The Dharma lives within the yogi,
The yogi follows the Dharma.
If you really follow the Dharma, nothing can harm you.
Even if they take this life, they can’t take your next life.
~ Drupon Samten Rinpoche
(source: the film, The Secret Yogis of Tibet)
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Save the Date! We are honored and very pleased to announce that Guhyasamaja Center’s next week-long retreat with Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche will be July 1-7 , 2013 at a retreat center in Maryland. The topic will be “Realizing Emptiness: Praise to Dependent Origination.” This will be the first time that Rinpoche has given an extensive teaching on emptiness to Western students, and it’s a teaching not to be missed.
Everyone is welcome to attend.
Registration details will follow in a month or two on our website: http://www.guhyasamaja.org.
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Posted in Buddhism, Center news, Commentaries on Texts, Dharma Teachings And Events, Khensur Rinpoche discussion, Tantra, tagged completion stage practices, Khensur Rinpoche Losang Jampa, retreat, Tantra, vajrayana on August 18, 2012 |
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This week-long retreat with Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche Losang Jampa will focus on the completion stage practices of highest yoga tantra. A particular focus for the retreat this year will be on the subtle energies and channels of the body as described in Buddhist tantra. These teachings will cover the remarkable, skillful methods of the Vajrayana which allow a practitioner to achieve full enlightenment in one brief lifetime! The unique methods and qualities of illusory body and clear light will be discussed, which is an extremely rare opportunity. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has noted that studying the illusory body and clear light as presented in such teachings allows one to much more deeply and clearly understand the nature of enlightenment itself and how it is achieved.
Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche is a former abbot of Gyumed Tantric College and is also a senior teacher from Sera Monastic University. In India he often taught on tantra to other Lamas and Geshes. During this retreat, Rinpoche will give those same teachings to Western students!
During this week-long, residential retreat, Rinpoche will teach on the essential points for practicing the completion stage of Highest Yoga Tantra. His teachings will be based on a text that has been translated into English and will be available to participants entitled The Condensed Meaning of the Path of the Vajrayana. Rinpoche will focus on the sections of the text that address the practices of the completion stage of Highest Yoga Tantra. This text covers the stages and paths of tantric practice and contains the essence of all the teachings in Lama Tsongkhapa’s Great Path of Secret Mantra. The important points of deity yoga and the generation stage sadhanas are covered as are the secret instructions related to the completion stage which allow one to progress in realizing the Illusory Body, Clear Light, and their union. Rinpoche will also cover the topic of the 9 mixings, which is an essential element also taught in the Six Yogas of Naropa.
The retreat will be held November 5 – 12, 2012 at the Am Kolel Sanctuary, Beallsville, MD. The sanctuary is about a 30 – 45 minute drive from Washington, DC.
For more information and to register, please visit the Guhyasamaja Center website. Registration closes on October 15th.
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For seven days Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche Losang Jampa skillfully guided us through the complexities of each of the classes of tantra. He highlighted the differences and similarities between the different classes. Students who are new to tantra as well as those who have been practicing for a while all benefited from Rinpoche’s insights and left the retreat feeling as though they had a much stronger foundation for their practice.
One of the highlights of the retreat was taking the Eight Mahayana Precepts with Rinpoche at 4:45 in the morning. For several people, this was the first time they’d taken precepts, so that made it particularly special for all of us. Rinpoche patiently explained the meaning and benefits of precepts and chanted the Tibetan extra slowly so we could all repeat the words after him. We also did the Confession to the 35 Buddhas. Saturday evening we did a rousing 4 Mandala Offering to Chittamani Tara.
Tenzin Bhuchung did an excellent job of translating for Rinpoche, and his close relationship with Rinpoche was heart warming . Gusho Ngawang la worked quietly in the background helping arrange the altar, caring for Rinpoche, and fine-tuning the sound system. Venerable Desal from the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archives, graced us with her kind and steady presence as did Venerable Chime. Venerable Chime led a group in chanting White Tara’s mantra for Rinpoche. Lorne Ladner led not just one but two meditation and discussion classes a day and everyone really enjoyed them. Terry Ladner led several of the morning meditation sessions, and I finished up the rest.
We tried a new caterer this year, and she served the best vegetarian food! Everyone pitched in and helped with the dish washing and other tasks.
Each of us overcame many obstacles in order to attend the retreat. We all felt very grateful and humbled in Rinpoche’s presence. The text for the class, The Condensed Meaning of the Path of the Vajrayana, is very long, so Rinpoche did not finish his commentary. Center Director Lorne Ladner asked Rinpoche if he would return next year to continue the teaching, and he agreed!
Please share your thoughts about the retreat.
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Just in case you missed it, registration for the Light of the Path retreat hosted by the FPMT Kadampa Center opened several weeks ago. This is a “must attend” for anyone who wants to be immersed in Tibetan Buddhism and who enjoys Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s energizing and captivating style of teaching. It’s a rare opportunity on the East Coast to be amongst so many sangha (at least rare in the Gelukpa tradition) and serious lay practitioners. Over 200 people attended in 2009. I spoke with a woman from New Jersey who said she knew very little about Buddhism but when she heard about the retreat and Lama Zopa knew immediately that she had to drop everything and go. She made a lot of friends and enjoyed herself.
Last September, a typical day started with an opportunity to take the 8 Mahayana Precepts followed by the Lama Chopa guru prayer and other morning prayers. Lama Zopa Rinpoche taught a session after breakfast. We observed silence until after lunch (or at least we tried to!). There was a discussion led by a senior sangha in the gompa after lunch as well as smaller, less formal discussion groups with other sangha. The informal groups met outside on the wide veranda of Lee Hall, students and teachers sat in rocking chairs in the sunshine looking out at the distant mountains. There was plenty of time for walks in the woods — complete with exciting black bear encounters.
After dinner Lama Zopa taught a final session and led the dedication prayers. We wrapped up about midnight, although the last night of the retreat I think we ended around 2 am. Then we walked back up the steep hill to the housing area, or caught a ride from the ever-cheerful volunteers who ferried people back and forth.
I stayed in Lee Hall in a double room which I shared with a terrific nun who came all the way from Australia just to attend the retreat. The room had a very high ceiling, a hardwood floor, big window, and a private bathroom. It was clean, and the beds were comfortable. It did not have a table or telephone or alarm clock, nor did it have WiFi (although it is available in the common area). So if you bring a laptop and need to work, plan on doing it in the in the lobby and bring an extension cord as there are very few outlets.
This year the retreat runs from September 12 – 16, 2010. You can attend for just one week or a weekend, there are several options. Please check the Kadampa website for more information and registration details.
Hope to see you there!
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Recently several people have asked about opportunities for group retreats. Here are a few in our area that I’m aware of that represent a variety of traditions and subjects:
Guhyasamaja Center: Stages and Paths of Tantra with Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche Losang Jampa — June 14 – 20, Beallsville, MD.
Lotus Garden: Shedra with Khandro Rinpoche — July 15 – 25, Stanley, VA.
Mindfulness Practice Center of Fairfax: Anh-Huong Nguyen and Thu Nguyen — check for upcoming weekend retreats.
And no list would be complete without Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s Light of the Path retreat in North Carolina (September 12 – 26).
Please check individual websites for details as the dates are subject to change.
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Registration is Open
Venerable Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche Losang Jampa
Save the Dates! June 14-20, 2010.
This one week, residential teaching retreat with Khensur Rinpoche will be held in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, DC at the Am Kolel Retreat Sanctuary. The topic for this year will be Stages and Paths of Tantra. Khensur Rinpoche will teach intensively each day culminating with group, guided meditations.
Stages and Paths of Tantra explains the mechanics and methods that make Tantra or Vajrayana Buddhism a faster path to Enlightenment. It includes explanations of the four classes of Tantra, how to engage in tantric practice in general, key elements of the generation stage of Highest Yoga Tantra, and key methods from various tantric systems for progressing through the completion stage of Highest Yoga Tantra.
For those with a sincere interest in engaging in any of the Highest Yoga Tantra practices, these classes will be totally indispensable for understanding how to go about your practice from beginning to end!
Pre-Requisite:participants must have taken a Highest Yoga Tantra initiation
Details and registration will be posted on the website.
Suggested resources: Recording of Ven Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche’s teachings on Tantric Grounds and Paths, August 2003 at Vajrapani Institute
Short bio of Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche Losang Jampa.
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Posted in Buddhism, Sacred Sites, tagged retreat on September 1, 2009 |
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Many of you know Ven Tenzin Lhamo, she’s been a strong supporter, advisor, and guest teacher at the Guhyasamaja Center for many years. After much hard work, she has opened an incredible retreat house in Crestone, Colorado. The house is available for retreats to people of all Buddhist lineages (ordained and lay) at reasonable rates.
Ven Lhamo’s teacher, Venerable Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel, (bio at Land of Compassion Buddha), consecrated the house earlier. Several sangha have already completed retreats and others have already made plans to do so. Ven Lhamo’s generosity and kindness in creating the retreat house to share with the community of Buddhist practitioners is truly inspiring. The retreat house is a gift to all those on the path to Enlightenment. For more information, please visit the Compassion Buddha Retreat House website, or contact Venerable Tenzin Lhamo at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope you too can do your next retreat in Crestone. It’s not easy to find a beautiful, affordable place to do a retreat here in the U.S. When you have a look at the photos of the retreat house on the website, you’ll pack your bags for sure. : )
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