Sikkim floods: Karmapa’s message

October 7, 2023

Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa, shares the following message after the natural disaster in Sikkim.

Letter from Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa, on the floods in Sikkim

A transcript of the letter follows:

Dear Dharma friends,

I was deeply saddened to learn of the natural disaster that took place in North Sikkim last Wednesday, when a sudden cloudburst over Lhonak Lake caused the glacial lake to burst and send torrents of water down the Teesta River, washing away Chungthang Dam and leading to rapid overflowing of the river.

The floods have washed away houses and bridges and forced thousands of people to leave behind their homes and belongings. Altogether, more than 20,000 people have been affected by this natural calamity, one of the worst to have hit Sikkim in decades.

As I am writing these lines, the death toll has risen to over 40, and dozens of people are still missing, as search and rescue operations still continue.

My prayers and thoughts are with all the victims of the disaster – the deceased, the bereaved and all those rendered homeless by the flood.

I would also like to ask all our monasteries and all Dharma friends in Sikkim, India, and around the world to keep the victims of this disaster in their hearts and dedicate the merit of their practice to them.

Moreover, the members of our monastic institutions and our Karmapa Charitable Trust in Rumtek will provide whatever support they can to ease the material suffering resulting from this calamity.

With prayers,

Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa