Vajra Sangha Retreat

About This Event

After a year of tremendous uncertainty the Vajra Sangha will gather online for the annual Vajra Sangha retreat to meet with Pema Khandro, practice together and study the root and branch vows. The Vajra Sangha are Pema Khandro’s personal long-term students.

Learn more about Vajra Sangha Membership here: Vajra Sangha Membership

Reviews     To review this event, visit the page for the venue or retreat leaders (above).

  • Willow M Renee   September 14, 2020

      Dakini Day Chod ~ Cutting Through Self-Deception

    I really appreciate the ability to practice and study Chod on Dakini Days with Pema Khandro Rinpoche. These classes help to reinforce and gain better skill in learning the instruments and melodies within the practice, as well as clarify questions that may come up from the practice. Thank you Rinpoche and Ngakpa International for this online opportunity of practice and study.

  • peche di   August 31, 2020

      Bodhisattva's Way of Life & Rage

    I love taking classes with Pema Khandro. She explained Buddhism teachings that we can use it in everyday life. In this class, we learn to use our anger as a tool to liberate us. Pema Khandro gave us several important examples how can we deal with our rage emotions. I'm looking forward to taking other classes with Pema Khandro.

  • Jivan Swann   August 28, 2020

      Transcending troubled times

    I appreciated the simple format, and the attention that was given to each question. I also appreciated the repetition of important details, along with gradually deepening insight. A lot of very relevant insights were shared in a honorable dialogue. I had some difficulty finding the link to the registration and had to download an app to run the level of zoom being used, luckily I figured out that the link was on the Website and not the email, and luckily I found the password for downloading the app. Seems like it could be easier, perhaps a tech support phone number.

  • Misty Complaint   August 16, 2020

      Dakinis

    One of the good consequences of the Wuhan virus is that many activities that used to be limited to in-person contact are now done online. I took this retreat by mistake, thinking it was going to be led by Khandro Dechen, who wrote Roaring Silence, a book I like a lot. This was a different group, led by an equally accomplished lama. The short (few hours-long) dakini retreat led by Pema Khandro Rinpoche, (i believe) a Nyingma teacher. The first part consisted of chanting sacred texts in Tibetan - not being taught the visualizations i lagged behind but found the sincerity of the practitioners very compelling. The subsequent dharma talk on the nature of the 5 elements (an important foundation for Bon, tantra and Dzogchen) was excellent. This clearly is a dedicated group devoted to the Budhadharma. If I lived in Berkeley I'd join them.

  • Donna Rushing   August 04, 2020

      Intro to Meditation Instructor Training

    I really appreciated being able to see Pema Khandro Rinpoche and hear her thoughts. Even though she was only there briefly, it was so supportive and she seemed so light and happy. I also was glad for the relaxation of not being on camera, but being one of of however many people of interest. As a teacher, I used a Learning Management System (LMS) called Canvas, so I'm curious if we will be able to explore the course before we commit to it. (I will check my email to see if I've received a link.) Since I had conflated the introduction with the actual training, I was surprised when the presenters casually touched on the payment and options, but scrolled quickly past the page with the actual info and moved on fairly quickly. I did ask about that at the end, and they went back and spent some time on the page and in explanation of the options, so my questions were answered. As a low income retiree, this piece is important to me. Since your organization has limited scholarships, I will pursue a scholarship from another organization that might fund me for this training and see what happens!

  • Laura Cannon   August 02, 2020

      A powerful transmission, even online!

    I am very grateful that despite the pandemic, this retreat was beautifully transmitted online. I wondered how the transmissions of such deep and powerful teachings typically given on residential retreat might translate to the online medium. Partially because I wondered if I would feel disconnected being online vs. in person and partially because I wondered if inside of my home I would be able to create proper conditions for the experience. On the retreat we were instructed about how to make a home altar on the very first evening. It was such a powerful part of the experience and it really felt like I was creating a connection between the virtual retreat and my actual inhabited space in my house by having the altar set up. By the end of the retreat I sincerely felt that I liked it even MORE than a live retreat. I highly recommend it.

  • peche di   July 17, 2020

      Amazing Buddhism Class!

    I've attended several classes with Pema Khandro. I love all the classes. I feel inclusive and welcoming. She's caring and wonderful. It's memorable to get to see an opening of Vajrayogini statue. I'm looking forward to joining her classes. ~ lotus

  • Courtney Smith   July 17, 2020

      Blissful #chodlover 🥰

    I love the teachings from Rinpoche before practice. She has a way of taking ancient doctrine and like a mother (Buddha) bird, breaking it down for easy digestion. I always learn how to apply what she shares to my life and practice. One of the most beneficial things is when she shares her personal journeys with her practices. Not only does this make her more "human" as a teacher to me lol (some amazing teachers are very disconnected from their students or separate themselves to appear "perfect" or above "worldly" things), but not only does this make her more relatable, but I find comfort that even her amazing Bodhicitta Self can also experience the same struggles and obstacles her students do and yet she is still benevolent (and patient) with herself. I instantly have more compassionate for myself every time I realize she has some of the same frustrating experiences I do (I can be hard on myself sometimes, thinking I shouldn't be "stuck" or Im not doing the practice well enough if I'm feeding the same demon every day). Another beneficial thing is how we didn't do the full Chod this week, we focused on one section. I realized this is WAY more beneficial for me in my practicing to be a Chodpa. It is less overwhelming, feels less like the practice is "work", and the visualizations became so much easier! I've already switched Chod from every night at 9pm to being my morning wakeup ritual (what better way to start the day then stomping on some demons? LOL). but I am now going to go back to basics. I am going to only do one section a day until I can fully visualize it in English while singing in Tibetan, and then I will move on to another section, including the one I previously became proficient in. Basically Dakini Days are my solace; they feed my soul and I am humbled to be able to receive this peace from Rinpoche's dharmic offerings 🙏🏾.

  • Michael Fijal   July 17, 2020

      5 Wisdom Dakinis Chod

    I always find Pema Khandro's teachings very penetrating and helpful. In the Chod, dealing with difficult emotions, it gives me great encouragement to hear about the ways we can approach their resolution. I felt empowered by Rinpoche's teaching. I was invigorated and inspired by the descriptions of the 5 Wisdom Dakinis, the poisons and their antidotes. I'm excited to explore more of this powerful and enchanting world of Vajrayana!

  • Kellie Rupard-Schorr   June 29, 2020

      Transforming, Brave and Safe

    The day was a mixture of tears and wisdom, comfort and peace. I have a better understand of the death process from the view of consciousness. After-Death is unique to Buddhism in Western Culture and knowing what to do, along with permission to be imperfect even as you love perfectly was so empowering. The memorial service gave me a flood of tears, the good cleansing kind, and even though I was on Zoom in my house, I felt Rinpoche and my sangha with me and I was not alone. I am changed by this offering.

  • Victoria Simon   June 23, 2020

      Lama Surya Das - outstanding!

    When I read “Letting Go of the Person You Used to Be” by Lama Surya Das years ago, it was life changing. I am so grateful Pema Khandro chose him as a guest and had great questions for him about the book and how he brings everything, even death and grieving, in the View and as a teaching. I admire how Lama Surya turns toward his deepest grief and engages it, and doesn’t avoid it, and sees the different layers of experience. This in itself, is a profound teaching. Thank you so much for an excellent, beneficial webinar, that includes timeless wisdom and teaching AND profound pithy Dzogchen meditation instructions. A jewel awaits any who view this webinar!

  • Könchok Wangchuk Palzang   June 17, 2020

      Another great session with Rinpoche and the sangha

    Rinpoche is great at explaining tantric teachings and symbolism in a way that makes sense to people who are approaching the teachings with Western schemas, background knowledge, and communication styles. She skilfully incorporates the language of contemporary psychology to accessibly explain why we as practitioners do things the way we do them and to explain, on some level, what makes the practices work. Last, but definitely not least, I love the friendliness, kindness, and welcoming attitude that I've gotten from so many people at Ngakpa, especially the two people I've had experiences interacting with so far, Tsal'gyur and Pema Khandro Rinpoche. They've been very kind and helpful in guiding my practice. Thank you all, once again!

  • Könchok Wangchuk Palzang   May 25, 2020

      Great event

    Rinpoche was an amazing teacher. She spoke in depth and with compassion and kindness, while keeping all of her instruction and discussion engaging and interesting. I'm very grateful.

  • Katalin Bogdan   April 20, 2020

      Great Teacher of our time

    Even with some studies and experience in Dharma Teachings, listening to Pema Khandro Rimpoche is always like a fresh breeze, totally timely and absolutely clarifying. Her teachings are easily accessible yet not simplified or shallow, in contrary, it is always surprising how vast her knowledge is supported by decades of practice and experience. For her age-group she is one of the most knowledgeable I have encountered among western Teachers in the tradition, and I am always amazed and delighted by the richness and applicability of her transmission. All her teachings I have heard are down to earth and totally practice oriented for the benefit of the listener. I have not yet attended any teaching in person, but would at any time if opportunity arises, till then i look forward to more - always, from this great Master.

  • Katherine Winge   April 19, 2020

      Deep wisdom

    Having the opportunity to receive the chod practice from Pema Khandro was a great gift. Her insight and experience with the practice was helpful to understand it. I love how well balanced her teachings are. They are deeply rooted tradition, practice and integrate psychology and common sense.

  • Linda Detsal Joy   April 19, 2020

      Retreats and Classes by Pema Khandro Rinpoche

    i have attended many of Pema Khandro's retreats and classes in person and online over the years. It always feels that she gives her utmost. Her teachings are not only practical but impart so much wisdom that rings true in my heart. I can hardly put into words how much she has helped me to make sense of life and given me deep resilience through troubled times. Teaching with so much compassion and empathy that it has deepened my own capacity for love and compassion in my life for my self and others. The atmosphere that is created in this community feels supportive, accepting and welcoming to anyone no matter who they are, which I believe is so needed in this world. I'm truly grateful to have been able to have access to these ancient and beautiful Buddhist teachings.

  • Philippe Guichard   April 16, 2020

      Transforming Fear | Shifting our perceptions

    I attended the series "Transforming Fear" online with Pema Khandro Rinpoche, it helped me find more space in my mind to deal with this transition we are all experiencing. One of the key teachings that I was reminded of was "Every experience will have a peak and it will dissolve", this helped remain in the openness of the mind and free our thoughts and emotions. A big thank you to Lama Pema Khandro Rinpoche and her team for making those teachings available. May this benefit all.

  • Susan Jackson Weirauch   March 23, 2020

      Medicine Buddha webinar 3/21/20

    Thank you so much for sharing all of that useful information. It was mentioned that participants would receive an email with all of the slides shown during the webinar, as much of the information was presented quickly. Will that email be forthcoming? I would love to review the material. My email address: susanweirauch@hotmail.com . Namaste.

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