Sakyong The Sakyong, Jamgön Mipham Rinpoche Fri, 28 Aug 2015 19:01:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Letter to Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church Thu, 02 Jul 2015 15:59:21 +0000 The Sakyong, having just emerged from leading a deep retreat at Shambhala Mountain Center, wants to share with the Shambhala community the following letter he has written to Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Letter to Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church

To the congregation of Mother Emanuel, and to the families and loved ones of the recently deceased, I write to you from deep meditation retreat in Colorado, with sadness and compassion in my heart.

Accidents can strike suddenly. Sickness can slowly wither our body and spirit. Natural disasters leave us in a state of panic at the elemental power of the world. But in facing terrorism arising through the poison of racism, we are shocked into a state of horror — personally experiencing humanity at its most violent.

In this time of instability and extreme challenge, where can we find refuge? What can transcend these illusory boundaries of race, ethnic origin, personal background, or orientation of any sort?

Our only reliable source of strength is the goodness of our hearts. Our only foundation for coming to terms with the suffering of the times is our innate need to be decent human beings.

All of humanity has this worthiness, locked deep beneath the layers of hope and fear. I write to you today from that fundamental place, in the midst of our loved ones being taken from us, and our very identity being stripped away. Underneath the bewilderment, grief, and anger, we find ourselves questioning the whole thing — our ground has been shaken.

However, when we come this close to senseless terror, we begin to glimpse our true nature — goodness — and we remember the goodness of those we have lost. We see this kind of bravery in the profound forgiveness voiced by the families of those who were killed in South Carolina. This is such an example of basic goodness and the power of forgiveness, right in the midst of the most ruthless violence and pain.

We must find and reside on that innate ground of human goodness in order to move through the darkness of this age. We must take refuge in the warmth of human decency in order to weather the pain and confusion that assaults the sanctuary of our very heart. We must join together in wisdom and kindness to combat the senseless terror we see all around us.

With profound love,

The Sakyong
June 28, 2015

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CBS Religion & Culture covers the Sakyong’s visit to Chicago Fri, 26 Jun 2015 14:50:19 +0000 Three years ago, the Sakyong challenged Chicago Shambhala Meditation Center to bring peace, hope and empowerment to their surrounding community. In May, the Sakyong visited Chicago again and he spoke about making peace possible at Fourth Presbyterian Church, checked in with community members and faith leaders of Englewood, and delivered a community talk at Shambhala Chicago.  CBS Religion & Culture covered the Sakyong’s visit to Chicago as a part of a documentary that looks at mindfulness and meditation in today’s society. The piece will air on June 28th on CBS.  Follow this link to see when the broadcast airs in your town or to watch online starting the 28th of June.

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Nepal Solidarity Day Fri, 01 May 2015 17:44:32 +0000 Message from The Sakyong:

“I write to you today with a full heart of compassion for the victims of the devastating earthquake in Nepal. Reports continue to flood the media, telling us of the innumerable children who now find themselves without parents, the broken families without homes, and the isolated villages without access to aid.

In the midst of this disaster, please join me in meditation and prayer for the people of Nepal. Let us gather in silence to offer our wishes for healing and wellbeing, bearing witness to the suffering of our Nepalese brothers and sisters.

The Sakyong Wangmo and I would like to offer our Shambhala centres around the world as quiet and sacred spaces to bear witness and offer compassion to the suffering in Nepal, and other places, such as Baltimore, experiencing turmoil.”

Shambhala Centres and groups around the world will be opening their doors to the people in their cities and neighborhoods so that we may unite as a global community in this challenging time, practicing sitting meditation, sessions of the compassionate practice of Tong Len (sending and taking), and walking meditation or shamatha yoga throughout the day.

To find the Shambhala Centre closest to you, visit

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Nepal Earthquake: hold Nepalese people in your hearts Sun, 26 Apr 2015 19:17:39 +0000 Dear Shambhala Community:

Since hearing the news of the earthquake and aftershocks yesterday, the Sakyong Wangmo and I have engaged in practice and prayer for the families and people of Nepal.

The Sakyong Wangmo spoke with His Eminence, Namkha Drimed Rinpoche, who is in Kathmandu at the Ripa family residence. The Rigon Tashi Choling monastery in nearby Pharpeng sustained minimal damage and no one in the Ripa family or monastery was injured in any way.

The situation in Nepal is very difficult and communication with the rest of the world is still sporadic. We ask that you all hold the Nepalese and Tibetan community in your hearts and personal practice during the coming weeks. In particular, chanting the Seven-Line Supplication to Padmakara and the Shambhala protector practices would be very helpful.

Thank you for supporting our brothers and sisters in Nepal.


With love and blessings,

The Kongma Sakyong

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Sakyong and Sakyong Wangmo Expecting Third Child Thu, 06 Nov 2014 20:42:56 +0000  

The Kalapa Court is delighted to announce that the Kongma Sakyong, Jampal Trinley Dradül, and the Sakyong Wangmo, Dechen Chöying Sangmo are expecting the birth of their third child in the Spring of 2015. The Sakyong Wangmo is in good health and shares the delight of the Sakyong and the Princesses in this auspicious news.

In our community, the continuity of teachings is held within the sacred bonds of family lineage—gently and fearlessly passed from parent to child. Let us celebrate the growth of the Royal Family for the strength and continuity of the Shambhala tradition of basic goodness.

We may wish to gather to hold celebratory lhasangs as described below. May joy in the expansion of our lineage pervade all of our practices and may all beings enjoy Profound, Brilliant Glory. KI KI SO SO!

Recite the Homage chant 3 times
Then, arrange a lhasang and chant:

The virtuous mark, the great banner of inspiring windhorse,
And these clouds of offerings of all desirable things
We offer to you, great being Gesar with your retinue.
Fulfill all our wishes; be victorious in all directions.
Copyright Nalanda Translation Committee. All rights reserved.

Circle the lhasang smoke while chanting:



To read more on lhasang practice, please visit:
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De Sakyong spreekt op het Bright Now Festival in Amsterdam Mon, 29 Sep 2014 14:04:01 +0000 De Sakyong spreekt op het Bright Now Festival in Amsterdam over optimisme en over de fundamentele goedheid van de mens. The Optimist stelde hem vier vragen.

See the full Q&A HERE


Dit weekend vindt in Amsterdam het Bright Now Festival plaats. Vragen die centraal staan op dit festival zijn: hoe kunnen we goede, menselijk samenleving ontwikkelen? Elkaar met open hart ontmoeten? En de wereld in een positieve richting bewegen?

Eén van de belangrijke sprekers op het festival is Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. Als Tibetaanse boeddhist staat hij aan het hoofd van Shambhala, een wereldwijd netwerk van meditatie- en retraitecentra. De Shambhala-leer is gebaseerd op het idee dat mensen beschikken over een aangeboren goedheid. Sakyong betekent ‘koning’ in het Tibetaans, of letterlijk: beschermer van de aarde. The Optimist mocht de Sakyong vier vragen stellen.

1. Uw laatste boek is uitgekomen in een bloedige zomer: van het Midden-Oosten tot Europa steken conflicten de kop op. Ondertussen heerst er toenemende bezorgdheid over het milieu. Toch stelt u dat de ‘menselijk aard’ en ‘menselijke samenlevingen’ in principe ‘goed’ zijn. Hoe verzoent u dat met elkaar?

‘De verstoringen in het milieu, en de negativiteit die oprijst uit de conflicten wereldwijd, zijn symptomen van een dieperliggend probleem. Namelijk: een fundamenteel onvermogen om onze wezenlijke goedheid en waarden te herkennen. Waardigheid en kracht horen bij de aard van mensen, van de menselijke soort. Ze zijn de kern van wie wij zijn. Maar als we dat vergeten, voelen we ons onzeker. Daaruit komt woede voort, en dat leidt weer ertoe dat we een cyclus in gang zetten en in stand houden waarin we onszelf en anderen schaden. We verwaarlozen het milieu en proberen ons af te zonderen van de samenleving. Juist daarom is het terugvinden van onze intrinsieke waardigheid de grootste uitdaging van deze tijd. We staan op een kruispunt: zijn we in staat om over onszelf na te denken en te herontdekken wat we waard zijn? Of hebben we onze menselijkheid al opgegeven?
Als we inzien dat onze natuur goed en compleet is, is het mogelijk met goedheid en mededogen te handelen. Dan kunnen we anderen en onszelf waarderen, dan bekommeren we ons om het milieu. Stel je eens voor dat dit op wereldschaal gebeurt.’

2. Hoe is dan de behoefte aan oorlog en conflict te verklaren? En, evenzo, de behoefte om oorlog en conflict door middel van geweld op te lossen (zoals president Obama nu probeert te doen)? 

‘Fouten zijn onvermijdelijk. Onze verschillen zullen ons dwingen samen sterk te worden, maar dat is een moeilijke weg. Toch is het aan ons terug te keren tot de kern van ons bestaan, het vertrouwen in onze wezenlijke goedheid en kracht terug te vinden. Wanneer we diep in onszelf kijken, zien we wijsheid en kwetsbaarheid. Reageren we door naar de wereld uit te halen? Of richten we onze aandacht op de gezonde verhoudingen die een harmonieuze samenleving uitmaken? Het is veel moeilijker iets op te bouwen dan iets af te breken, maar we moeten de zaken op de lange termijn bekijken, en proberen om voor komende generaties een basis voor een stabiele en harmonieuze samenleving te creëren. Hoe krijgen we dat voor elkaar? Door goedheid, wijsheid en vastberadenheid.’

3. Hoe ziet u de rol van de media in hun berichtgeving over wat er in de wereld gebeurt, vooral als het gaat om oorlogsgebieden?

‘Bewustmaking van lijden, wanhoop en ongelijkheid is op zich een goede zaak, omdat dit de weg vrijmaakt voor een beter inzicht, voor mededogen en hopelijk actie. Er moet echter ook aandacht zijn voor menselijke vooruitgang en successen.’


See the full Q&A HERE


Full interview in English:


1. Your book comes out against the backdrop of a bloody summer: conflicts are on the rise from the Middle East to Europe, and meanwhile, more and more sound the alarm about our impact on the planet. Yet, you claim “human nature” and “human societies” are in principle good. How do you reconcile your point of view with how many people view the world around us now?

The disharmony we experience in the environment and the negativity we see in conflicts throughout the world are symptoms of a deeper issue. At a fundamental level, we are failing to recognize our own inherent goodness and worth. As a species on planet earth, our nature is dignity and strength. This is the core of who we are. When we forget this fact, we feel insecure. Anger arises, and we perpetuate a cycle of pain through harming ourselves and others. We ignore the environment and attempt to separate ourselves from society. In this way, remembering our intrinsic dignity is the most important issue of our time.

We are at a crossroads. Can we self-reflect and discover our own worthiness? Or have we already given up on the human heart?

When we see that our nature is good and complete, we act with kindness and compassion. Then, we have the ability to appreciate ourselves and others, and we care for the environment. Imagine if this occurred on a global level.

2. If people are in principle good, how do we explain the desire for war and conflict? And, similarly, how do we explain the desire to end war and conflict by violent means (like President Obama is now attempting to do)?

We will always make mistakes. And our differences will force us to grow strong together, which is a path fraught with difficulty. However, it is up to us to return to the focus of our lives—trust in our inherent kindness and strength. When we strip away the layers of our being, we find wisdom and vulnerability. Do we react by lashing out at the world? Or do we reach for the healthy relationships that make up a harmonious society?

It is much harder to build something than to tear it down. But we must take a long-term perspective. We should focus on creating the foundation of a stable and harmonious society for generations to come. How do we accomplish this? Through kindness, wisdom, and determination.

3. How do you see the role of the media in reporting about what’s happening in the world, especially when it comes to reporting about war zones?

Promoting awareness about suffering, despair, or inequality can be positive in that it allows for greater understanding, compassion, and hopefully action to occur. However, there must be reporting on human progress and triumphs as well.

4. Is it possible for those using the horrible violence we’re now witnessing at the IS, to discover their “hidden treasure” of fundamental goodness? If so, how? And, is there a way for others (us) to help them?

Every moment presents an opportunity to recognize the core of humanity—whether one is a bus driver, the president of a nation, or a murderer. In each instant, we can stop and reflect on who we are and what we are doing with our life. Even in the direst situations, when people are given the opportunity to discover their humanity, the possibility of it coming through can occur. By creating a global culture where humanity itself is respected, rather than simply our own agenda, we create a greater tendency for qualities such as empathy and wisdom to come about. The acts of aggression being experienced all over the world are not isolated occurrences. We all play a part in the health of our global community. We are in this together and we all have the opportunity to shift the degradation of our time to a stronger and brighter future.

I think this moment is an invitation for all of us to reflect on who we are and where we are headed as a species.


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I’m a Runner Wed, 09 Jul 2014 15:28:28 +0000 Back in February, the Sakyong and Michele Moses from Runner’s World got together to talk about running, meditation, and deepening our experience of life.
See the full article and video here.

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Sakyong Bestows Inaugural Friend of Shambhala Award Fri, 06 Jun 2014 11:28:35 +0000 Sakyong in Vermont

Governor Shumlin of Vermont receives the inaugural ‘Friend of Shambhala Award’ from Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche

On Tuesday June 3rd, in the Governor’s Ceremonial Office at the Vermont Statehouse, Shambhala Buddhist leader and best-selling author Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, presented the first ever “Friend of Shambhala” award to Governor Peter Shumlin and the people of Vermont, in recognition of the state’s continuing role in creating and propagating a climate of inclusivity and compassion for all Vermonters, and its historic role as the birthplace of what is now a strong Shambhala Buddhist community throughout the US.

Fifty students of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche were on hand to witness the Friend of Shambhala Award presentation to the Governor and three members of his Cabinet. The Award reads in part:

This award honors the people and institutions of Vermont for their commitment to the inherent dignity and worth of the human being. Vermont offers a generous spirit of welcome to people from all walks of life and beliefs. It fosters human community as a rich resource of care and connection, providing a safety net for all those in need including a livable wage and meaningful work, as well as quality, affordable and accessible patient-centered healthcare.

To read the full article, please visit

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Life is Worth Living Tue, 11 Mar 2014 15:12:19 +0000 Shambhala Day 2014

Transcript of the Sakyong’s Shambhala Day Address, 2014

Published by The Shambhala Times on Thursday, March 6, 2014

THE SAKYONG: I would like to begin this new year with a bow, an international bow from here in Dorje Dzong. We can extend our heart out and meet all those of you who are joining us online — from Europe, where it is much later, from Halifax in Nova Scotia, from the East Coast, the Midwest, the West Coast, and also from Latin America and Asia. At this particular moment, we come together as Shambhala, and we come together from the seat of basic goodness. Whatever your aspirations are for this year, please let us have a communal bow and raising of lungta. [All bow.]

Thank you, and a very cheerful Shambhala Day to all of you. Cheerful Shambhala Day! [All: “Cheerful Shambhala Day!”] That’s better. [Laughter] And a very cheerful Shambhala Day to all those of you who are joining us. I was actually wondering, as you might wonder if you were me, what is Shambhala Day? [Laughs; laughter] Why do we come together on this new day, this fresh-start day? Shambhala Day represents the notion that we — as a community, as a sangha, as an organization, as a multigenerational culture — raise our group energy, we raise our group lungta. As much as it is an occasion for all of us individually, Shambhala Day is very much a communal, social, raising of lungta. This is very important for us because many of us obviously work hard and life goes by quickly; it’s easy just to lose track of the days, months, and years. All of a sudden, the belly is either bigger or smaller or the hair has changed colors. So many things are occurring — it’s important that we take this astrological moment when, according to the lunar system, the new year is beginning. We take a moment to reflect on this precious existence, this experience of life that we are all going through.

We have come together around the teachings that my father, the Dorje Dradul, brought from his homeland of Tibet, about the message of human goodness, which have somehow touched and inspired us as a community and beyond. It is important in this constantly shifting world, where it is very difficult to know what to depend on, to know how to guide our life. It is important as individuals and as a community to regroup and think about the basic, essential principles and values that we all hold dear. We can do that, daily, but as a community I think it is very good to do it annually and see this particular moment as a spirit of “life is worth living.”

We have gone through challenges, but our whole makeup as human beings is geared toward living. And there is so much that can overwhelm us. As the geopolitical situation is increasingly more intense, we all begin to wonder about the goodness of being human. We all begin to wonder about the goodness of society. So this moment is our attempt as Shambhala — and globally, it’s not the only attempt — to come together and to make life meaningful and valuable. It takes a community to do that. We need to support each other and we need to wake ourselves up, so that we do not just look down.

Shambhala Day is about looking up, by the way. You can always check your lungta barometer by noticing where you meet people visually. If you find yourself looking a lot at their feet, you know where that’s going! But if you raise your gaze to the heart or the head, it’s getting higher.

Can we as a community raise our lungta? We gather, we practice, in order to do that. But even at an atomic, genetic level, we need to feel the purpose of living. We need to do that daily. Meditation teaches us how to be moment to moment. But together, astrologically, we need to do that annually. And we need to reset our orientation. Like a ship sailing in the vast ocean, it is very easy to lose direction. We need to know how to orient ourselves. Are these principles valuable to us? Are they what we would like to affect us?

So today is the moment when we do that, and we do it in a cheerful way. For whatever reason, my father decided to use the word cheerful instead of happy. If you know him, it makes perfect sense, but I am also okay with happy, by the way. [Laughter] Considering everything, it’s being nitpicky. So either happy or cheerful — that’s a transmission, because in this day, there is a tendency to be depressed. There’s a tendency to be hard, to be not optimistic, and we can see why. But this is an opportunity for us to see how our life can be worth living. And one of the most important things right now is how we do that. We need to galvanize not only our own energy, but also the community energy.

In the last few years, you have heard me talk about the notion of the Shambhala principle of basic goodness. The great Druk Sakyong, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, the Dorje Dradul of Mukpo, traveled to the West to bring this message. When we reflect on why such a great being would do this, it becomes more and more self-evident that it is time for us personally and globally to look at this fundamental message of human nature. Out of this comes the notion of how we can create good society. That is the notion of vision — as we say in Tibetan, lha, “what is above.” It is associated with the head, the eyes, and looking out. It’s having an attitude and a direction.

We have now also had time to reflect personally to see if we believe in or feel basic goodness. That has been a personal and a communal contemplation. I believe that now, as we enter into this Year of the Horse — which naturally correlates with the notion of windhorse, energy, action — that this is very much a year of doing, accomplishing.

It is very much a year of the nyen, as we say in Tibetan. Nyen is very much connected with the torso. It is the mountain and hills aspect of geography. For all of us who are in various positions and roles, it has to do with leadership. In Shambhala, we are at a point where we have a sense of vision and we have personally connected, but we need to join those together. We need the nyen. We need that heart and the chest. We need to know how to move forward in that way.

For me, what we have been asked to do is a daunting task. The more I reflect on the actual meaning of the Shambhala teachings — what we have inherited and what are we doing — I realize that it’s not so much that we are simply trying to meditate our way out of the problem — even though many of us have tried, [laughter] and keep trying, by the way. Rather, the Shambhala teachings are talking about the fabric and nature of creating a paradigm shift. They are actually looking at how society functions — the ethics by which society functions and how people value each other.

In this light, we have been given the task of becoming architects of a new civilization. We are actually being asked to contribute to how the world is going to be. Do we want it to be based upon aggression? Do we want it to be based on condescension? What are the value systems that we want to uphold? This task is very challenging for us.

Sometimes in our Shambhala centers, it is hard enough to just do the programming. We are overwhelmed. Personally, we may only have time to practice, amidst everything that’s going on. However, by reflecting myself and by talking with a lot of you, I know that we are deeply, viscerally, emotionally, and maybe subliminally concerned about the direction society is taking. What are the methods by which we are going to participate? Are we just going to abstain and hope it gets better?

Meditation itself is an indication of the power of the mind and heart. We are in a situation where we are trying to empower the human being. We call it “raising lungta.” We call it “planting the Ashe.” We call it “having the sun of basic goodness.” As my father would like to say, “we believe humanity, the human being, is naturally awake.” And that wakefulness has power and energy. We feel that. Sometimes that’s why we can’t sleep at night, that’s why we get frustrated — because it’s powerful. Not only is it powerful, it is intelligent. And it’s not just us as Shambhalians who have this wakefulness. Everyone has it.

Here we are, living on this planet, leading our lives, and we are all contributing to this social soup. With our attitude, either we are participating or we are abstaining. What I’m wearing is called a chuba. It’s a Tibetan dress. So in Tibet they say, “Hitch up your chuba!” It’s kind of like, “Roll up your sleeves.” [Laughter] This is very much a hitch-up-your-chuba-and-roll-up-your-sleeves kind of a year, depending on where you come from, and your order of selection. [Laughs; laughter] What that means is that we do not necessarily need to join an NGO. Of course, if we have the choice, we can help desperate situations around the world. But here it means embodying these principles and having the confidence to expand. One of the key ways that it really occurs is by creating a culture of kindness.

We have been focusing on kindness for a while. I have been giving the same speech for twenty years [laughter], and some of you are definitely old enough to remember. But kindness doesn’t mean a schmaltzy community. Kindness indicates an intelligent community. When you are kind, it means you are observant of another. And as soon as you see another and you are kind, you notice what? How you are similar. As soon as human beings realize they are similar, what happens? The tendency to help occurs. And in the Shambhala vernacular, what is the tendency to help? It’s called success. An unkind community is an unintelligent community where we simply notice the faults, the deficiencies. Then we abstain, and soon we become isolated.

So we need to become a kind community — not just a bunch of individuals together trying to be nice, but people who have the lungta, the vulnerability, and the bravery to actually extend. The moment you notice somebody and extend kindness, that’s brave. When that happens between two people, a culture of kindness is instantly created.

So today we are celebrating, food, meditation, and conversation. You can do less meditation today [laughter], and more food and more conversation. We have the power to create culture, which doesn’t necessarily require massive numbers of people. It occurs when one individual has discovered their inherent culture of goodness and is willing to share that. Although you can’t see it, that’s what’s happening between the aura and the energy. I’m using those words because we are in Boulder. [Laughs; laughter] You can’t see it, but there is something happening.

Subliminally, that’s what my father would be calling enlightened society — that invisible connectivity that is occurring. That is culture. When we drive our cars or eat food, we are always looking for that notion of connectivity. We as human beings need each other. Our emotional connectivity validates our existence. We know more about who we are. That is a human trait. If we think the world is shrinking and are afraid to connect, what kind of a lonely place is it going to be? We see ourselves as full of many seeming deficiencies, too. Then we create a culture of separation, mistrust, fear, and animosity, which is an abstaining culture.

For us here who are in a contemplative tradition, this should be a proactive culture. Not that we are forcing somebody else to think how we think, but that we are not embarrassed to engage and manifest our principles. Right now, as meditation becomes more common and popular, we have a little more leeway to actually feel less self-conscious about these principles, and to manifest them. Right now, we are at the cusp, or the beginning, of finding many ways for these principles and teachings to manifest — in the workplace, education, and so forth.

I would like to ask you to please participate! If you have done your program and you’re thinking, “I have done my bit,” that’s a teaser. This is a community. Those trainings are valuable and important, but we need to feel like we can participate in creating this culture. I trust your intelligence. As we become more intelligent, we will find different ways to be creative in education, technology, or science. In all these fields, basic goodness and wakefulness will become the norm. Then the Shambhala community can say, “When things seemed rocky, we didn’t fold.” Even the thought of trying sometimes seems overwhelming. As we know when we meet people, behind the fear there is a sense of tremendous . . . fear. [Laughter]

Can we project the energy of this horse? Traditionally, a horse represents many principles. It’s the notion of exertion, movement, success, and victory. For us, it is also the notion of inherent human dignity. We can actually connect with our dignity and connect with one another. When human beings take their seat as human beings — and even when a dog takes its seat as a dog, or a horse takes its seat as a horse — that intimidates us because they are being who they are. So when we are who we are as humans and have dignity, the elements line up. We are not afraid of nature.

We can be part of nature. We can be part of the elements. In our tradition, connecting in that way is called drala, magic, or inherent wakeful energy. Today — Shambhala Day — is very much the notion of magic. We are literally here, and somehow amongst all this there is amazing heart. When we think about it and reflect on it from that point of view, it is truly a miracle. It’s important that we allow ourselves to honor that.

I very much look forward to working with the Kalapa Council and all of you who are center directors and leaders. Leadership training is very important this year. I also feel like we have begun a very important transition. We have the vision, and there is so much happening. At the same time, we need to increase our understanding of finances. I’m extremely happy that we are already moving in this way in terms of the Unified Giving Model, and we have so much to do. Gathering people and having a community is naturally the element of richness and wealth. Inherently, it is part of the notion of dignity. It’s important that we are not afraid to think that we, as a community, can be successful. Leadership can move forward in this way.

So I encourage all of you to find out how you can participate and contribute. Effort is an essential component not only of what will keep this together but of how we will move forward. In that light, I want to encourage the wonderfulness of our multigenerational community. It keeps getting older, by the way. Those of you who are young – it’s important that you feel you can train and be leaders and participants in this community. Now is the time to step up and participate.

So I send my love and greetings. Those who are in Europe, I tried to speak as slowly as I could, so excuse me if I was too quick. Those of you who are in the evening, please enjoy the rest of your festivities. Those of you who are very early in the morning, please enjoy the beginning of your festivities. I look forward to the teachings and the programming that we have scheduled. We are continuing the effort of going out, doing more festivals and continuing that energy. We also have wonderful retreats planned. So those of you who have the time and opportunity, please join. In particular, please maintain that sense of bond that we have.

So on this particular day, I would like to say that I’m delighted to be here with the Sakyong Wangmo and obviously Lady Konchok, my mother, who still thinks I’m a boy [laughter]. As I get older, that’s fine with me! [Laughs; laughter]

So thank you everyone.


Sakyong Wangmo Shambhala Day, 2014Transcript of the Shambhala Day Address, 2014 from The Sakyong Wangmo, Dechen Choyong Sangmo

The Sakyong Wangmo: Cheerful Shambhala Day, everyone, and Happy Losar. Tashi Delek. I am delighted to be here with the Sakyong and our two daughters, Lady Konchok, and members of the family who have gathered on this most auspicious day, the first day of the New Year, the Year of Horse, which is a year of action. This is naturally connected with our ancestor, the enlightened King Gesar of Ling of Tibet, who is an embodiment of dignity and accomplishment.

Since our culture is based on basic goodness and enlightened society, this is the year to connect to the horse energy of raising our lungta, especially in continuing to fulfill the wishes of the Sakyong, who has asked all of us to expand Shambhala, making it strong and of benefit to the world. So I encourage all of you to raise your lungta, which I believe begins at home. How we live and conduct ourselves is the basis of our personal vitality and helps us be socially beneficial. I feel that we, as a community, have raised our windhorse and are in fact kinder, more cheerful, and more welcoming. This, I feel, is a true sign of genuine warriorship.

In this light, we owe gratitude to the Sakyong for continuing to inspire us. So I would like all of us to raise our collective windhorse and enter this New Year with the energy and spirit of our positive action. This feels like yet another important year for our community, therefore let’s begin this together.

So, Cheerful Shambhala Day again. Happy Losar. And please enjoy and celebrate with your family, friends and delek gatherings. Happy Losar and Cheerful Shambhala Day! [Cheers. Applause.] We need to say it loudly today, and cheerfully!


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The New Yorker features the Sakyong Wed, 11 Dec 2013 16:30:33 +0000

The New Yorker writes: Last week, New York welcomed Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, the leader of the Shambhala Buddhist community, when he spoke at the New York Society for Ethical Culture. The Sakyong, which means “king”—or, literally translated, “earth protector”—in Tibetan, is an incarnate lama. The Sakyong is a runner as well. “I couldn’t run very far at first,” he chuckles, lacing up his New Balances. Marathons are a regularity these days, and when he visits New York, he prefers to run the Central Park loop.

We visited with the Sakyong to get his thoughts on mindfulness.

Visit the New Yorker video channel, featuring profiles, commentary, interviews, and more.


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