Kootenay Shambhala Blog

Blessings and gratitude

June 7th, 2013 by Cameron Wenaus

Finding Freedom from Within: Buddhist Meditation Retreat

April 16th, 2012 by

July 28 – August 5

The Shambhala Meditation Centre of Nelson is offering a meditation retreat July 28 to August 5, at their retreat land south of Nelson. The retreat will take place in a screened pavilion in the forest, and will feature eight to ten hours of meditation daily, talks and meditation instruction. The retreat is open to beginning and experienced meditators. The Directors will be Andy and Wendy Karr. Andy is the author of two books: The Practice of Contemplative Photography, and Contemplating Reality, a study of mind and reality. Wendy teaches Japanese flower arranging and dharma art.

For more information and to register, go to the programs section on our website or visit http://kootenayforestretreat.org/

Suggested donation: $500, (see our accommodating Generosity Policy)


Lunch Time Buddha: Every Wednesday and Friday

April 16th, 2012 by

Feed your soul from 12pm – 1pm every Wednesday and Friday at the Nelson Shambhala Center.

Our public meditation practice sessions highlight the Shambhala community’s core practice—mindfulness-awareness meditation—in both sitting and walking forms.

Wednesday sessions start and end with chants. Everyone is welcome, and participation is free of charge. Participants may come and go as they wish.

Please go to our programs page to view more details on Lunch Time Buddha meditation and other upcoming events.



GREAT NEWS! Thursday is Yoga Night at the Shambhala Center

April 10th, 2012 by

5:10pm-6:40 pm

Come enjoy a beautiful yoga session where you can fully embrace your inner self.

This gentle class, that is open to all levels, will help bring strength ,flexibility and alignment

to your body .An intimate experience of your breath will be a main focus.This practice will also

cultivate awareness of your energetic self and how this connects to our sacred world.

This class is very much about a celebration of your very special life.

Please come a few minutes early, bring your mat if you have one and your open heart (of course)


$12 drop -in OR $40 for 4 classes Please contact Sylvan for more details

Living Room Dharma: Deepening the guide experience

April 10th, 2012 by

Every Thursday night at the Nelson Shambhala Center is an opportunity to deepen your understanding and experience of the written Dharma. Join us in our center’s cozy living room with your friends from the community from 7pm – 9pm.It’s a free ongoing program and everybody is welcome. Please visit Living Room Dharma on our website for the evening’s schedule. Don’t worry if you can’t stick to the schedule, you can drop in anytime between 7pm and 9pm.

If you have never meditated before, please come to our Open House on Monday nights where instructions to meditation is given as no instructions will be given on this evening

Friday 13 April 2012: Movie Night

April 10th, 2012 by

Once again, we are presenting a movie at the Shambhala Center. This month’s selection is Brilliant Moon, Glimpses of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, narrated by Richard Gere and Lou Reed.

Khyentse Rinpoche was one of the great Buddhist masters of the 20th century: a guru’s guru. He was a mentor to our founder Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and also to the current head of Shambhala International, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. He was known for his spacious mind and vast perspective.  The film was an Official Selection at the 2010 Sun Valley Spiritual Film Festival and also at the 2010 International Buddhist Film Festival.

Show time is 6:30 to 7:00 pm; $5.00 suggested donation.


Shambhala Training Level II: Birth of the Warrior-20 April to 22 April 2012

April 10th, 2012 by

with Sally Albert

This weekend program is part of The Way of Shambhala, our core path of training.

Prerequisite: Shambhala Training Level I

Meditation practice allows us to observe how we personally create a cocoon of habits to mask our fear. These habits trap us and prevent us from experiencing the full potential of our lives. Through meditation, we begin to appreciate that there is no fundamental obstacle to experiencing basic goodness.

Fri April 20: 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

Sat April 21: 8:30 AM – 6:00 PM

Sun April 22: 8:30 AM – 6:00 PM


Suggested donation: $120; $30 for repeat participants (see our accommodating Generosity Policy)

Even if you have done Level II, it is wonderful to do it again. If you are able to be part of the staff for the weekend, please let us know.

Registration: To pre-register, or for more information, contact Sally Albert at eldoradocreek@gmail.com.

Here is a link to the programs page where you can register for the program.

Exploring Pure Perception at Senge Ling

March 23rd, 2011 by Michael Foster

By Russell Rodgers

One of the key commitments in vajrayana Buddhism is to experience the world as sacred. Sacred in this context doesn’t mean that some deity proclaimed it so; it just is, primordially, in the present moment of fresh, pristine awareness. In our business, however, we live in our thoughts and concepts about the world rather than the world itself, and we lose touch with its sacredness and basic goodness. Our concepts can be so subtle and pervasive that we don’t even realize that they are there. We just feel deadened and disconnected from the magical, living quality in our surroundings. At the same time, we feel haunted by the feeling that something is missing.

In 2009, we did a retreat called “Touching the Earth”, which explored our connection with the natural world in dharmic terms. This summer I thought we could dig deeper into the aspect of pure perception and self existing, natural ordinary magic. We’ll use meditation and contemplation to dissolve barriers to direct, non-conceptual experience. We’ll do a lot of awakened heart practice to connect to our fellow sentient beings in the forest and in the world at large. We’ll use the Mahayana teachings on empty/fullness to explore our perceptions and establish an authentic relationship to our surroundings. Based on our meditation practice, we’ll look into drala, the naturally existing power of places that wakes us up into sacredness.

At this time in our history, we humans have extraordinary power over nature, and at the same time, we have become more disconnected from it. Over the past many years of doing outdoor meditation retreats at Senge Ling, I have been impressed with the power of practicing in the forest to restore my connections. The meditation pavilion, screened but open on all sides to the forest makes this possible. This summer, I think the time is ripe to use the wisdom of our tradition to deepen our relationship with the world more fully. Ultimately, our place in nature must be realized from the inside if we are to make a difference to the planet. This journey is not particularly political: it’s simply a profound and deep appreciation of what we have.

Here is a message from King Gesar to his subjects in the land of Ling in the 11th century in Tibet. I think it applies today:

The world is healed or harmed each instant
In the stillness of our hearts.
Whether we struggle or rejoice, this is so.
People of Ling, this is our power and the power of all.
We must open the true kingdom in our hearts.

For more information please see our program listing for the 2011 Public Weekthün.

Supporting Japan in meditation.

March 17th, 2011 by Bobbie Ogletree

Everybody is invited to share love and support our japanese friends who really need help in these hard times after the earthquake and the explosion of the nuclear centre in Fukushima.

You can meditate sitting with the hands in your heart, or you can dance, sing, paint…anything which makes easier to share your beauty and love. The important thing is to focus your intention on supporting Japan.

The meditation lasts 15 minutes and s…tarts on Saturday 19/3/2011 at 12.00 pm (italian time zone).

If your time zone is different, please check the different timing to meditate at the same time we do (www.worldtimeserver.com). If for any reason you can’t do it at that time, do it at any time is more comfortable for you.

It is also an invitation to pass from individual consciousness to collective consciousness, because our japanese friends are not far away, THEY ARE HERE…sharing this beautiful planet with us.

Don’t leave them alone, let’s connect all together to send love and support to them.

A New Kind of Governance

March 6th, 2011 by James Northcote

Rebecca Hazell

Rebecca Hazell

Rebecca Hazell, one of four shastris appointed to serve the Shambhala Pacific Northwest region, kindly submitted this article to shed light on the Kalapa Governance Gathering that took place in San Francisco last month. For all articles by Shastri Hazell, click here.

By Shastri Rebecca Hazell

In mid-February, one of several governance conferences around the world was held in San Francisco. Victoria Centre Director Layth Matthews, Practice and Education Director Mark Hazell, and Shastri Rebecca Hazell (me) attended this huge gathering. People came from as far away as Texas and Tehran (yes, in Iran!) to participate. Here’s what it was like to be there:

After an opening lhasang at the new SF Dzong, we all walked to the nearby Baha’i Center, where the conference was held. Many of us cheerfully chanted the ki ki so so ashe chant aloud, astounding bystanders who smiled equally cheerfully. One commented that this was the best-dressed parade he had ever seen.

This atmosphere continued throughout the program, although there were also many tears and much emotion, as the leaders guided us through a series of contemplative, interactive, and dramatic exercises designed to open our hearts, heal old wounds, and bring our collective wisdom to the fore. The general atmosphere was gentle, humorous, and fearless. Read the rest of this entry »