Tsurpu Monastery No. 1 ‘Brown’ Incense
- CAD: $48.57
Tsurpu Monastery Grade 1 ‘Brown’ Incense contains about 36 medicinal substances, including Tsurpu medicinal herbs, Ganden medicinal herbs, nectar pills, Tsurpu holy water, white sandalwood, purple sandalwood, and saffron crocus. This Grade 1 Incense is somewhat thinner than most Tibetan. The aroma is sophisticated — pure, soothing and refreshing, without being intrusive or ‘heavy’. The beautiful, hard-sided box is satin-covered inside and out and features a magnetic closure. The box is available in 2 colours — yellow or blue.
Tsurpu Monastery was founded in the twelfth century. It is a branch of the Kagyu tradition and considered the most important Kagyu monastery and seat of the Karmapa lineage. Their members are known as the Black Hats after the Second Karmapa was presented with one by Kublai Khan. The Karmapa were the first order to institute the system of reincarnated lamas — a tradition later adopted by the Gelugpa school.
Approx. 90-100 sticks per box | 23cm x 2.5-3 mm | Approx. 225g
My first thought on hitting this was that it was similar to the other Tibetans I’m reviewing, but then my second thought immediately went to how balanced this one is and I started wishing maybe a cologne or similar perfume might smell like this one. I find the balance of that ‘animal’ musk that I’ve been getting in other Tibetans is sort of perfectly played against the woods and herbs present here to give it a sort of divine cologne scent. I’d imagine that Buddha might smell something like this after a long meditation. The cologne of spirituality achieved through ultimate meditation. I also note that the ‘ingredients’ listed out on the page here include “purple sandalwood” and I’m intrigued and wonder what that might be. High altitude sandalwood? A different varietal? This is probably the most expensive set of sticks I’ve encountered, until I realized that at $80 for 100 sticks, it’s actually 80 cents a stick which is much less than some of these that are closer to a dollar or more a stick(like Tashilhunpo grade A).
I bought a box of this incense over five years ago and light it every once in a while as I have an extensive incense collection. Well, I just lit one up now and surprisingly, despite its age, its still highly aromatic. Seems like time has softened the aromas and made it even better than before.