Mandala is the intricate, art aspect of Tibetan culture, based on specific lineages of teachings passed from master to student over generations. If a lineage is lost or broken, then the art form would be nothing more than an ordinary person’s creation, without much essence. That is why building Zangdok Palri is central to the realization of our mission. The very process of building a Mandala is itself an act of teaching, or passing down, tools for peace and lasting happiness. Building Mandala teaches the qualities of patience, diligence etc. It is also an opportunity for learning about the ancient art form itself, its symbolism and meaning.”

The esoteric aspect of our mission is the belief that when such a Mandala is realized with the lineage intact, and then it is consecrated by the actual lineage holders—the very sources of wisdom and compassion—the entire monument becomes alive with blessings, which radiate outward for the benefit not only of the immediate area, but the entire world. The entire universe will benefit, first in balancing the elements. As we can see, the elements are completely disturbed by the terrible state of mind of humanity. More than ever before, nature’s expression of displeasure is causing inconceivable damage to life—human beings, wildlife and so forth. It is believed that building such a Mandala will contribute toward taming, balancing & settling mother nature’s elements.

The second most important aspect is that the blessings of such a Mandala will instill peace of mind. Human beings come to very limited conclusions when they lose their hope. Our capacity for reasoning beyond lost hope is limited, and we make decisions that will bring more suffering, damage and destruction. Monuments like Zangdok Palri are a source of hope to those who have a spiritual affinity. It is the same case with all of the world’s monuments. When we have a source of hope, a world of possibility opens up, and we are willing to explore.”

—Lama Chödak Gyatso Nubpa

Zangdok Palri is a highly symbolic and intricately detailed Mandala representing the enlightened qualities of Guru Padmasambhava, the master who brought Buddhism to Tibet in the ninth century. For those who see, touch, enter or remember this sacred structure, it is said that a connection is made to quicken one’s spiritual development and to realize one’s innate compassion. The initial stages for constructing this Mandala, as a centuries-lasting, four-story monument dedicated to global peace and harmony has already begun, under the direction of the Lama Chödak Gyatso.

During the Chinese communist takeover of Tibet in the twentieth century, almost every example of the Zangdok Palri Mandala in Tibet was lost as part of the destruction of six thousand monasteries and the subsequent loss of most of Tibet’s sacred art.

Historically this Mandala is extremely ornate and detailed, requiring rare, esoteric expertise that is currently in danger of being lost. Only a few elderly Tibetan masters remain with the knowledge required to accurately depict this cultural treasure, making time an urgent consideration in this project.

There is a significant danger of losing the lineage of Zangdok Palri due to lack of properly trained artists. Recognizing the importance of preserving this particular treasure of the Tibetan cultural heritage, the property in Tehachapi, Pema Drawa, will serve as the location to construct Zangdok Palri USA in the form of a four-story monument.