Rain Gray: "I'm sitting in
Kathmandu, Nepal. It's October 7, 1986. And I'm sitting with a friend of mine Lama Lobsang
Molam, who is a monk at a monastery in Swyambu, Kathmandu, Nepal. And we're here to
discuss the historical usage of singing bell bowls, and what we've been able to piece
together after researching for eight years, and trying to discover what these things are.
Lama Lobsang will be acting as translator because we have with us another monk who has
knowledge of these singing bowls from Tibet, before the Chinese invaded Tibet. Lama
Lobsang do you want to introduce yourself and our guest?"
Lama Lobsang Molam and Lama
Lama Lobsang Molam: "Yes, he's
Lama Lobsang Leshe. Actually he came to Nepal from Tibet, before 1959. In Tibet he was a
monk at Drepung Monastery, the biggest gompa in Tibet. There are four major monasteries in
Tibet. One is Drepung Losel Ling, one is Drepung Gomang, one is Ngapa Dartsang, one is
Dayang. There's four. So, he comes from Drepung Losel Ling."
Lama Lobsang Leshe: "Actually
the Tibetan government, Ganden Potang, is a. . . first Ganden Potang become Drepung
Monastery. Fifth Dalai Lama
built it in Drepung, his first palace is in Drepung Monastery. So that singing bowl lives
behind this palace, we call Kungar Awa, his throne, like a singing bowl house, you
"Someone says, one older
than him, a monk, he said 'This singing bowl came from India side and before this present
Buddha', we call Sange Wasong, 'is for begging bowl this is.' At that time this singing
bowl was used for a begging bowl of that previous Buddha."
"Does that mean Shakyamuni
Buddha? Or a previous incarnation?"
"No, no, no, a previous
incarnation, the third Buddha. This present Buddha is fourth one, isn't it. The third
At that time they
are using that singing bowl for begging bowl, and all the Arhats and disciples were using
singing bowls for begging bowls. This doctrine is Buddha Shakyamuni's doctrine. At the
present time we don't use singing bowls for begging bowls, we're using begging bowls made
of iron, you know, they are not singing bowls."