First Stupa Built in Portugal

| 01-21, 2009

    Humkara Dzong is a Tibetan Buddhist community, that sits in the Serra do Caldeirão hills (also known as Serra do Mú) in the Algarve, Portugal, forty five kilometers North of Faro. It was founded in 1982 by Lama Kunzang Dorje as a centre of the Ogyen Kunzang Chöling, a community of the Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism.

Some years ago it was decided to construct a “Stupa” there. The site, at the highest point in the hills overlooking the Algarve and the Atlantic Ocean beyond, was chosen according to traditional principles of tibetan geomancy and consecrated by His Holiness Trulshik Rinpoche, a great Tibetan Master resident in Nepal.

A “Stupa” (Chorten in Tibetan) is a buddhist monument containing thousands of prayers, relics, statues, incense and many other offerings. Its beneficial influence on the surrounding countryside, working in the same way as acupuncture treats the body, is immeasurable and profound.

The “Stupa” of Humkara Dzong is the first to be built in Portugal. The structure is of massive grey-rose granite quarried and sculptured in Portugal, 6 metres high and placed on a granite base one metre twenty in height. Its form represents the Buddha’s enlightenment.

Figura: Location of the “Stupa” (amplify using (+) )


In July 2008, Tulku Rizin Pema, a Lama particularly revered for his knowledge and skill in the construction of stupas, came to HumKara Dzong to complete and consecrate the mandalas, prayers, statues, incense, grains, shells, vases and other multifarious elements contained in the “Stupa”.

He was later joined by Pema Wangyal Rinpoche, Jigme Khyentse Rinpoche and Rangdrola Rinpoche for the final consecration ceremonies. The throne (earth) of the “Stupa” and then the sections representing the elements water, fire, air, sun and moon were put in place, and the “Stupa” was completed on 14 October 2008.

This “Stupa” contains precious relics from the last Buddha, and also the previous one, Kashyapa, Guru Rinpoche and many great lineage Masters. Everyone who comes to see the “Stupa” and walk around it will be touched by the wind which it has felt, will receive innumerable merits and will reach enlightenment in five lifetimes. Any person having emotional problems, health, family or financial worries, or suffering from depression or any other ailment, may think of the “Stupa”, visualise its form, pray to the Buddha and will obtain help and relief. It is a beacon of peace in a troubled world.

Humkara Dzong is projecting now to construct, on the surroundings, a square wall about the “Stupa” with entrances at the four directions. The wall symbolises protection for the mind against negative emotions and the four doors represent love, compassion, joy and equanimity. The pillars at each of the four corners are the seals of the Buddha’s teaching. A line of bells will lead from these pillars to the top of the “Stupa”, and the ringing of the bells will remind constantly the seals.

The Humkara Dzong community needs funds to complete this project, therefore, any contribution will be most welcome and a source of great merit.

Contacts for donations or for more information:

HumKara Dzong, Moinho do Malhão, Salir 8100-183 Loulé, Portugal.

Tel: +351 289 48 90 62

Fax: +351 289 48 91 50



Banco Espírito Santo, Loulé – Portugal

Ogyen Kunzang Chöling

Account N° 2472 7468 0008. SWIFT/BIC:  BESCPTPL

NIB: 000702470027468000809

IBAN: PT5000 070 247 002 7468 0008 09

Text by Richard Arndell

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Category: Articles, Buddhism

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Published by Grand Yoga with authorization of the promoter(s).