House in the Mountains

22 Sep

Dear People who are karmically connected with me,

As you know I love beautiful mountains, dwellings in the mountains. Pastor Seng Piow on his own initiative has been just looking through various beautiful properties. Some are just breathtaking and when I see something beautiful I just want to share with others whom I feel might appreciate it also. This thread is just to share the pictures of the houses and the amazing environments. You don’t have to write anything or reply after my posts. You look at the pictures in your own relaxed liesure time. NO RUSH. JUST ENJOY. Just seeing some of these pictures is so relaxing and beautiful. May I share some the beauty of these places with you.

I wish all of you the opportunity to engage in deeper and more retreats as you get older because by retreats, we get closer to our Yidam and our Buddha within (mind) us. Retreats purifies tremendous karma, stabilizes our mind, overcomes obstacles, gives us real purpose, good preparation for future lives and gives us a chance to focus solely on ourselves in a good way. In the correct way. It is the best way to spend the little time we have left. We should always prepare for future lives as taught by the Sage Shakyamuni, Conqueror Tsongkapa, Heruka Pabongka in Lam Rim. We should be enthusiastic about that because it is for ourselves and we are the only one that can do this for ourselves. Meeting dharma is the result of karma collected in previous lives to afford us this opportunity to prepare. How lucky we are!! That is why I am attracted to mountain retreat houses.

So many times in life we want to do something good for ourselves by travelling, eating, getting lots of money, joining parties, dressing up, socializing, vacationing, finding partners, finding name and in the end we end up more unhappy and more bitter than we can imagine. This is not because we are bad, but because we approached finding happiness in all the wrong places without knowing it. We became more lonely and bitter than when we started. Thanks to our good karma, we found dharma, the most important find in our lives. Happiness only comes from peace we find within by the light of dharma wisdom we have applied. One of the ways to develop this wisdom is through our spiritual learning, spiritual convictions, contemplations and practice. We have to keep on learning and not stop. We can take it with us. The best thing we can ever do for ourselves is to get closer to our Yidam. And quiet retreats is one of the best ways. Having the fortune to spend time often in retreats contemplating, offering, prayering, reciting mantras and focussing on the Yidam is the best way to spend our lives and free time. We have little time left. All the great Mahasiddhas of the past gained their great attainments this way. All that we hold holy became holy this way. All that is holy exist to only point this way to us. So they show an infallible method and example to us. We are blessed. We must get closer to our Yidam. This should not be future tense always as we are not devas with immensely long lives. Our minds with the Yidam’s mind must merge by retreats, practice, learning and compassion. This is the best preparation for death and life.And all lives to come.

I have always sought the mountains, lakes, forests and solitude for this. My draw and attraction to the mountains is primarily for this reason. I wish to share this with you. Sharing the mountains and the dwellings is to share a spiritual message of retreats and therefore joining with our Yidams with you. I wish to share what makes me happy with you and what will make you happy represented by these mountains/dwellings. So on this special thread I will share beautiful pictures of houses in the mountains that bring back a ‘memory’ of dwellings in mountains perhaps for me from a different time and place. This is my most heartfelt desire and what is deep in me and you are invited. May you all realize and achieve and be loved and love without barriers.

My love, humiliy and genuine care to all of you. I sincerely wish deeply all of you will gain highest attainments and ascend to Kechara Paradise.

Tsem Rinpoche



Recently, Rinpoche wrote the above and sent it with several pictures of houses in the mountains to a few people including myself. Then, he asked me, “For years, I have been sending people pictures of houses in the mountains. Why do you think I send people these pictures?” I gave a cacophony of answers but none seemed to be the right answer. It took me awhile of asking people and finally, Rinpoche related the true reason for these pictures.

The pictures of houses in the mountains were meant to implant a thought of becoming one with our yidam. Yidam here means a personal meditational deity that could be Manjushri, Je Tsongkhapa, Vajrayogini or any other yidam. Becoming one with one’s Yidam can only be done by performing retreats in isolated places like these houses in the mountains just like those performed by the great Mahasiddhas and yogis of old in India and Tibet. By engaging in these retreats, we gain spiritual attainments and powerful transformation of the mind.

Spiritual attainments and transformation cannot be attained by being in the middle of a bustling city full of distractions and it cannot be done when we are constantly caught up with worldly affairs. It must be done in an isolated place and the ideal isolated place is where it is green, lush – has trees, rivers, mountains, lakes and so forth. Hence, Rinpoche had been encouraging people to engage in smaller retreats now to prepare them for longer retreats later. To engage in retreats, we must have some Dharma knowledge – learning and practice so we understand, appreciate and know how to engage in these retreats.

That was why Rinpoche send these beautiful pictures of isolated houses in the mountains to people. He said it is to implant that thought and to remind people of that thought so that they would engage in retreats later.


10 Responses to “House in the Mountains”

  1. Li kheng September 23, 2014 at 1:11 am #

    Thank you Pastor David for conveying the deeper significance of Rinpoche’s kind gesture of sharing beautiful images of suitable retreat spaces. Everything Rinpoche does has many-fold meanings and benefits. It is true, the bustling city is not a good place to do retreat or even reflect due to outer noises as well as inner noises of our untamed minds. In the embrace of isolated spaces, we can experience immediate calm, peace and clarity.

    I have had the good luck to do short retreats of Lama Tsongkapa in Kechara Forest Retreat and despite the short time frame and still very surface practice, the retreat creates a sense of serenity, clarity and harmony.

    Understanding that these short retreats are laying the grounds for longer retreats is exciting and may we all be blessed to make effort and collect the merits to consistently have the opportunity to be in retreat and connect with our Yidam.

  2. Edwin Tan September 23, 2014 at 1:32 am #

    Dear Pastor David,

    Thank you for the short explanation of why Rinpoche constantly send us images of lush, green forests / mountains, and quaint cottages that emits peace and serenity.

    Rinpoche does so much to help us connect with our Yidam and Dharmic practices.

    Now i understand the true meaning to all these.

    Deepest appreciation Pastor David

  3. May Phng September 23, 2014 at 3:23 am #

    Dear Pastor David, thank you for your explanations to Rinpoche’s frequent sending of mountains and mountains homes for our viewing.

    Personally I am also attracted to mountains. I remember once in 2009, while I was in Nepal with Rinpoche, we were having breakfast and we faced mountains, and Rinpoche asked me if I liked mountains and we had a chat about that.

    Once again, thank you Pastor David.

  4. Pastor Henry Ooi September 23, 2014 at 3:29 am #

    Thank you, Pastor David.

    Kechara Forest Retreat in Chamang, Bentong, Pahang, Malaysia would be the place to engage in such meditational retreats.

  5. Lucy Yap September 23, 2014 at 4:26 am #

    I love the beautiful mountains and the green color of the trees,the large size of the old trees and also the fresh mountain air.The great view of the mountains really make me feel grateful.Rinpoche shines with great compassion and wisdom and guides us continuously for our benefit.
    Thank you Rinpoche for the beautiful pictures and Pastor David Lai for sharing.

  6. Pastor Shin September 23, 2014 at 5:11 am #

    Thank you Pastor David for this post. Retreats, as shown by past masters and teachers is the way to gain spiritual attainments and powerful transformation.

    Thank you for sharing these precious moments with Rinpoche and the precious teachings.

  7. William Chua September 23, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

    Dear Pastor David,
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and what Rinpoche meant when he shares houses in the mountains. Not only Rinpoche share what he likes with us, he also implants Dharma seeds in us so that we will one day be able to go on retreats and to go nearer to our enlightenment.

    It is true that the countryside and mountain side is very peaceful and serene and with a nice and cosy house, it would be a perfect place for retreats.

  8. Patsy September 23, 2014 at 2:41 pm #

    Dear Pastor David,

    Thank you for taking the time to explain this to us. The photos of those houses that Rinpoche sent us are very beautiful. We are also very fortunate to have Kechara Forest Retreat in Chamang,Bentong, Pahang in Malaysia that is conducive for our retreats too.

  9. Li Kim September 24, 2014 at 5:18 pm #

    It is with appreciation I have read this article. It has been a while I have not caught up with your blog Pastor David. I’ve always enjoyed your writing.

    Thank you for this article. I now understand the deeper meaning for these wonderful and peaceful pictures. I also understand why Rinpoche always said KFR must be green and luscious. KFR is the place for us to connect with the Yidam. It’s our meditation destiny. How beautiful!

  10. Pastor David Lai October 21, 2014 at 3:20 am #

    Wow! Thanks guys. This is the most comments I have had in a long time. Glad you guys appreciate what I have to share.

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