Kadampa World Peace Temple


Good morning. This temple is arising through the wisdom and compassionate vision of our Spiritual Guide and Founder, Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche. Through his pure intention, this Temple has a profoundly beneficial purpose – dedicated to world peace and the perfect happiness and freedom of all living beings without exception.

We sincerely pray that the appearance of this precious Kadampa Temple in Williams, Arizona will bring great benefit to the people of the local area and people throughout the world, and may this benefit continue generation after generation.

In this way, may all suffering quickly cease, may all happiness and joy be fulfilled, and may holy Dharma flourish forevermore!”


Resident teacher of the IKRC Grand Canyon &
Deputy Spiritual Director of the New Kadampa Tradition

Thursday, March 22, 2017

from ground breaking to the opening in 7 minutes...

In the fall of 2019, the fifth Kadampa Temple for World Peace, based on the mandala and the heavenly mansion of Buddha Heruka, Buddha of Compassion, was inaugurated in the peaceful surroundings of the IKRC Grand Canyon. Both the special five-tiered architectural design and the sacred art within reveal that the Temple is a representation of the Pure Land of Buddha Heruka and Buddha Vajrayogini.

It is a modern Buddhist Temple designed by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche, a world-renowned Buddhist meditation master who has pioneered the introduction of Modern Buddhism into contemporary society.

The Temple is located at the International Kadampa Retreat Center Grand Canyon in Williams, Arizona. It is part of the New Kadampa Tradition which is an international spiritual community dedicated to achieving world peace through following the Buddhist path. Our community consists of residents – people who live on site, and others who live in the local area.

Buddhist Temples are representations of a Pure Land of an enlightened being – an enlightened heaven. Whoever sees them immediately experiences peace of mind, or inner peace. When we experience inner peace we are happy, so Temples function to give happiness to everyone, whether Buddhist or not.

The Symbolism of the Temple

The shrine at IKRC Grand Canyon is regarded as the model for future Kadampa Temples and KMCs.

In the center section is Buddha Shakyamuni with Avalokiteshvara on his right and Arya Tara on his left. On either side stand stupas, representations of a Buddha’s enlightened mind. In the right section as we face the shrine are the five lineages of the Wisdom Dharma Protector, with Thousand Armed Avalokiteshvara above. And in the left section is Je Tsongkhapa, the founder of the New Kadampa Tradition, with his sons (heart disciples) Gyaltsabje and Khedrubje.

Modern Kadampa Buddhists rely sincerely upon Je Tsongkhapa and regard their Spiritual Guide as his emanation through whom they receive special oral instructions. Accordingly, in front of Je Tsongkhapa in the shrine there is a statue of the holy Spiritual Guide Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, flanked by Heruka and Vajrayogini, the principal Highest Yoga Tantra Deities of the tradition.

On either side, at the top of the shrine are the collected works of Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche, the precious scriptures of Modern Kadampa Buddhism.

The Precious Wheel

The vast wheel inside the lantern contains precious scriptures symbolizing the teachings of Buddha spreading throughout the world. Buddha’s teachings are said to be like a precious wheel because, wherever they spread, the people in that area have the opportunity to control their minds by putting them into practice.

The Deer and the Dharma Wheel

The Dharma Wheel appears above the door of traditional Kadampa Temples between a male and female deer. These symbolize the stages of the path of Highest Yoga Tantra.

The eight auspicious signs symbolize in general how to progress along the Buddhist path. The Dharma Wheel, deer, and top vajra teach you the stages of the path of Highest Yoga Tantra. The male deer symbolizes the realization of great bliss. The female deer symbolizes the realization of emptiness. The Wheel of Dharma symbolizes the union of these two.

Through progressing in this union of great bliss and emptiness, finally you will attain the five omniscient wisdoms of a Buddha, which are symbolized by the top five-pronged vajra.

The Eight Auspicious Symbols

A complete set of the eight auspicious symbols symbolize the spiritual path that leads to freedom from suffering, and the permanent inner peace of enlightenment.

Outside, the temple feature 2 sets of these 8 auspicious symbols in each of the 4 cardinal directions — North, South, East and West — and inside there are 2 sets plated in gold leaf.