Chöd, the practice of severance, is a profound ritual for dealing with fears, illnesses, and difficult emotions. Developed in the 11th century by the great Tibetan yogini Machig Labdrön, the practice of Chöd slowly transformed from an obscure practice lineage into a cornerstone of multiple schools of Tibetan Buddhism.
The practice of Chöd is a unique blend of the Mahayana, Vajrayana, and Tibetan Shamanic traditions, with deep philosophical roots in the Prajñāparamitā (Perfection of Wisdom) literature. The practice is lively sung with accompaniment by a ritual drum and bell, creating a ritual environment that is rich with many layers of symbolic and energetic depth.
Chöd practitioners in Tibet were long renowned for their supreme healing capacity, especially in instances of epidemic disease. They would be regularly called upon to lead funerary activities, especially in cases when people have died from contagious disorders, due to their miraculous ability to deflect illness and work with unseen forces. While early western Tibetologists erroneously classified Chöd as a kind of wrathful “exorcism” ritual, Machig’s practice is in fact often regarded as a supremely peaceful offering rite. Instead of banishing or fighting with negative forces, the Chöd rite facilitates the ceremonial offering of one’s own body as sustenance for the various guests included in the feast. Through this profound act of love, one’s self-clinging is undermined and awakening naturally dawns.
Healing comes when fear, fixation, and self-clinging are cut through, based on nurturing instead of fighting what assails us, ultimately giving rise to an awareness of the empty nature of afflictive emotions.
For the first time, Tara Mandala is offering a complete online training in the Chöd practice developed by Chögyal Namkha’i Norbu Rinpoche. The course includes over 9 hours of streaming video teachings, audio/video downloads, and other practice supports. All materials are located on our online learning platform for on-demand viewing.
This 9-hour online course includes:
- • 9+ hours of exclusive video content
- • Downloadable text, images, and practice mp3
- • Live Oral Transmission (rLung) for the practice
- • Drum/instrument and melody guidance with Erik Jampa Andersson
- • 25% student discount on Chöd implements in the Tara Mandala store
Great for first-time Chödpas or seasoned practitioners, this program includes teachings and practice demonstrations centering around:
- • The historical and philosophical foundations of Chöd
- • The life story of Machig Labdrön, matriarch of the Chöd tradition
- • Meaning and symbolism of the Chöd implements
- • Practice explanation (Tri) for the Chöd sadhana of Chögyal Namkha’i Norbu Rinpoche
- • Instructions for performing a Chöd retreat or pilgrimage
- • Instructions for healing others with Chöd
- • Advice for integrating Chöd with Feeding Your Demons™
The practice of Chöd includes the use of traditional ritual instruments. For beginners, a Chöd drum and bell are the only necessary implements, both of which are available from the Tara Mandala bookstore. Students receive 15% off Chöd Implements in the Tara Mandala Store.
Sustaining Sangha discounts are available. For program-related and technical support inquiries, please contact email@example.com.