A SPECIAL FAREWELL: Workers in Bloomington on Wednesday prepare the pyre where Taktser Rinpoche's body will be cremated. Photo/Indystar.com/SAM RICHE
New York, September 11 - Taktser Rinpoche Thupten Jigme Norbu’s body will be cremated today with ceremonial Buddhist rituals. Family members told Indystar.com, an online news portal that they were given special legal permission to conduct the outdoor cremation because of their religious beliefs and Norbu's place in the community.
Mourners paid their last respects to Taktser Rinpoche Thupten Jigme Norbu Wednesday at his temple home in Bloomington, Indiana.
More than 100 people in a procession dropped yellow, blue and white silk blessing scarves at the feet of Thubten J. Norbu, a former Indiana University professor who was the eldest brother of the Dalai Lama, reported Indystar.com.
Thubten J. Norbu, the eldest brother of the Dalai Lama and himself regarded as a reincarnated Lama, died Friday in Bloomington, Indiana. - PAUL SANCYA / The Star file photo
Rinpoche breathed his last on Friday (September 5) at his temple residence at the age of 86. Preserved since then with ice and air conditioning, Norbu's body is being given a traditional sendoff for a high lama, or Buddhist teacher.
“As mourners filed into his room, Norbu was positioned upright in his bed, seated in the lotus position and adorned with an ornate Buddhist headdress. Amid a fog of incense, eight robed monks sat along a wall chanting Tibetan prayers, clanging cymbals and ringing bells -- all aimed at helping him along his journey to rebirth”, Indystar.com reported.