First International Chöd-Zhije Conference: The Lineage of Machig Labdrön & Padampa Sangye
July 12 - 16, 2017
First International Chöd-Zhije Conference:
The Lineage of Machig Labdrön and Padampa Sangye
July 12-16, 2017
With follow-up retreats July 18-23, 2017
When Machig Labdrön asked Padampa Sangye how to best serve sentient beings, he answered:
“Approach that which you find repulsive,
Whoever you think you cannot help, help them,
Go to the places that scare you, like cemeteries,
Find the Buddha inside yourself.”
One thousand years later, the teachings of Machig Labdrön and Padampa Sangye continue to have great relevance. Their lineages of Chöd and Zhije Dug-ngal are practiced widely in the Tibetan tradition and have evolved through both kama (oral) and terma (revealed treasure) traditions. Considered one of the “Eight Great Chariots of Spiritual Accomplishment” in the Tibetan tradition, these teachings offer a paradigm of integration rather than opposition that can be applied at all levels of human life and society.
This historic First International Chöd-Zhije Conference draws together leading scholars and practitioners researching and teaching this unique lineage in its various manifestations. Keynotes, panel discussions, and small group sessions will explore the teachings of 11th century Tibetan yogini Machig Labdrön and her teacher, the renowned Indian yogi Padampa Sangye; the developments of the lineage over the last millennium; the role of women; as well as the application of these teachings to our modern world. Dharma teachings and performances of Chöd songs and dances will foster a rich and engaged experience. Follow-up retreats will offer the opportunity to learn some of the different Chöd practices.
Never before have scholars and practitioners of this lineage gathered together for a conference. The conference represents a major step in understanding the depth of this tradition and current research. It is designed for those with scholarly interests as well as Dharma practitioners who wish to deepen their understanding of Machig Labdrön’s lineage, and anyone interested in bringing this ancient wisdom into our modern world.
- Lama Tsultrim Allione, founder and spiritual director of Tara Mandala, is author of Feeding your Demons: Ancient Wisdom for Resolving Inner Conflict and Women of Wisdom and a teacher of Chöd.
- Lama Tsering Wangdu Rinpoche, lineage holder of the Longchen Nyingthig, Zhije, and Chöd traditions, is founder of the only monastery dedicated to Chöd teachings in Nepal.
- Gochen Tulku Sang-ngag Rinpoche was recognized as the 6th Incarnation of Drimed Lingpa by Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö, and is the founder and spiritual director of Ewam International Centers in USA, Nepal, India, Bhutan and Taiwan. Rinpoche is currently transmitting the full treasure cycle received in pure vision from Machig Labdrön and Padampa Sangye by Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje, called Dzinpa Rangdröl, at Tara Mandala.
- Sarah Harding translated Machik’s Complete Explanation: Clarifying the Meaning of Chöd, and Dudjom Lingpa’s cycle of Thröma Nakmo with Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche. As a fellow of the Tsadra Foundation, she recently completed the volume on Chöd in Jamgön Kongtrul’s Treasury of Precious Instructions. She is Associate Professor at Naropa University.
- Dan Martin, Ph.D., is a literary translator for the Institute of Tibetan Classics at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has written extensively on the Zhije tradition and Padampa Sangye.
- Sangye Khandro is a highly esteemed Tibetan translator; during the past forty years she has translated many of the liturgies that accompany the Dudjom Tersar terma tradition of Chöd, and has lead numerous retreats.
- Michael Sheehy, Ph.D., is the Director of Programs at the Mind & Life Institute, and an Assistant Professor in Religious Studies at the University of Virginia. He is the author of “Severing the Source of Fear: Contemplative Dynamics of the Tibetan Buddhist gCod Tradition.”
- Amelia Hall, Ph.D., received her doctorate at Oxford University; her dissertation translates and reflects upon the biography of HH Kunzang Dechen Lingpa and his development of a Healing Chöd practice presented in the West. She is Assistant Professor at Naropa University.
- Kunze Chimed is a Mongolian Chöd singer, and practitioner and teacher of Chöd in the Gelugpa tradition. She has published the Manual of Chöd Practice, among other works.
- Karma Lekshe Tsomo, Ph.D., is Professor of Theology and Religious Studies at University of San Diego. Working with the Sakyadhita International Association of Buddhist Women and the Jamyang Foundation, she is closely in touch with Chöd practitioners in India, Mongolia, Nepal, and Siberia.
- Michelle Sorensen, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religion, Western Carolina University. Her dissertation is entitled “Making the Old New Again and Again: Legitimation and Innovation in the Tibetan Buddhist Chöd Tradition.” She continues to research and write extensively on Machig Labdrön and Chöd philosophy and practice.
- Naksang Rinpoche was recognized as a tulku by HH the 14th Dalai Lama and completed the traditional three-year meditation retreat in a cave in the Indian Himalayas. He will share the unique healing Chöd ceremony from the mind treasure of Kunzang Dechen Lingpa.
- Sarah Jacoby, Ph.D., is Associate Professor in the Religious Studies Department at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. She is the author of Love and Liberation: Autobiographical Writings of the Tibetan Buddhist Visionary Sera Khandro.
- Tina Lang is a graduate student in Buddhist Studies at Rangjung Yeshe Institute in Kathmandu, Nepal, where she is focusing on the practice and study of Chöd.
- And others…
Tara Mandala is an international Buddhist organization supporting the development of wisdom and compassion, with a primary focus on the lineage of Machig Labdrön in both its ancient Tibetan forms and its modern adaptations. Founded by Lama Tsultrim Allione and David Petit in 1993, Tara Mandala Retreat Center is located on 700 acres outside of Pagosa Springs, Colorado, and is home to the Trikaya Tara Temple.