Retreats

Menla Prayer Wheel at Karuna Retreat Centre

Upcoming Australian Retreats in March 2019

The Stages of Meditation Training in Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism (3 full days)
7 – 11 March 2019
Venue: Brahma Kumaris, Frankston, Melbourne, Victoria
In this introductory retreat Wangdrak Rinpoche will give an overview of the stages of meditation training followed by dedicated practitioners in Tibet (particularly in Nyingma and Kagyu practice lineages). He will briefly introduce the Tibetan approaches of Shamatha & Vipashyana, yidam deity yoga, up to the most direct meditations to ascertain emptiness as the nature of the knowing mind. In giving this overview Rinpoche will highlight the principle of Buddha Nature that underlies the Tibetan Vajrayana path, and thereby help students to enhance whatever their regular meditation practice may be.

The Stages of Meditation Training in Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism (3 full days)
14
– 17 March 2019
Venue: Brahma Kumaris, Leura, Blue Mountains, NSW
In this introductory retreat Wangdrak Rinpoche will give an overview of the stages of meditation training followed by dedicated practitioners in Tibet (particularly in Nyingma and Kagyu practice lineages). He will briefly introduce the Tibetan approaches of Shamatha & Vipashyana, yidam deity yoga, up to the most direct meditations to ascertain emptiness as the nature of the knowing mind. In giving this overview Rinpoche will highlight the principle of Buddha Nature that underlies the Tibetan Vajrayana path, and thereby help students to enhance whatever their regular meditation practice may be.
(Although these teachings will cover the same theme as the Melbourne 3-day retreat, they will be adjusted for those participating. Rinpoche’s teaching style is experiential and engaging, and he likes to adapt his teaching to suit the people in the room.) 

Vast Wisdom of the Great Perfection (7 full days)
17
– 25 March 2019
Venue: Karuna Sanctuary, Saywell Rd, Katoomba, 2780
Tsangyang Gyamtso was the founder of Gebchak Gonpa and a remarkable yogin of the late 19th century, praised in the writings of his contemporaries Dza Patrul, Ju Mipham and Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoches. This teaching was given by Tsangyang Gyamtso as a pith instruction to the many Gebchak nuns and male yogins who were his disciples. It covers the View, Meditation and Conduct on the path of Vajrayana practice, and is a beautiful glimpse into the non-sectarian attitude of the Rimé era in which Tsangyang Gyamtso lived.

Wangdrak Rinpoche was recognized by Sakya Trizin as the reincarnation of Wangdrak Dorje, one of the early lamas of Gebchak Gonpa who worked to provide women with the same opportunity as men to train in the Buddhist path. At the age of nine Rinpoche began his monastic education in the Kagyu, Sakya and Nyingma traditions, later receiving the Khenpo degree in Buddhist philosophy at the non-sectarian Dzongsar College in Tibet. As a Lama of Gebchak Gonpa, Wangdrak Rinpoche is committed to the spiritual and material welfare of over 350 nuns in Eastern Tibet who are renowned for their devotion and profound practice of Vajrayana yogas and meditation. Rinpoche is currently developing a retreat hermitage in Nangchen, Tibet as a training hub for Gebchak lineage nuns and monks, as well as for international students. He regularly visits his students in Singapore, Malaysia and China, and visits Australia roughly every 18 months to lead meditation retreats.

Elizabeth McDougal (Tenzin Chozom), Rinpoche’s translator, is a Canadian who lived and trained as a Tibetan nun in India and Tibet for 18 years. Elizabeth has been Wangdrak Rinpoche’s translator and project coordinator for 13 years and has Masters’ degrees from Banaras and Sydney Universities. She is now a PhD candidate at Sydney University doing fieldwork-based research on Nangchen’s contemplative culture.

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