As soon as a person dies, usually most Tibetans would write a letter requesting prayers and then send it with a small donation. Then they send this to Dalai Lama, to Karmapa, to Sakye Trinzin and all great and good lamas; incarnate lamas, rinpoches, khenpos, monasteries, every monastery that you have good connection with or you have devotion or positive connection with. You give them all a donation, because we can’t say exactly which lama has the right circumstance or connections or power to help this person who has died. So therefore the more widely you request prayers the more the chance is that there may be someone who is very good at helping, some right connections, so we send a small donation. In India it’s something like five rupees, ten rupees, two hundred rupees, five hundred rupees; if it’s a very important lama and you have a very great connection then you send more and if not, send just a little bit, even if it is five rupees, and a scarf or something like that, this is one thing which the Tibetans do, especially where I come from. It’s not which school or which sect or anything like that from this point of view – I would have no problem if Christians also pray for me, Muslims, or Jews or whoever, so I think it is good.
Ringu Tulku’s own words on making offerings for prayers