9-Day Mahamudra Retreat

Acharya Richard John

February 14–23, 2020

Tuition $0 + 9 nights

This retreat is restricted to tantrikas who attended Vajrayana Seminary or Sacred World Assembly, or who have received pointing out instruction from a Rinpoche in the Kagyu or Nyingma Lineages.

Tuition has been set to $0 and lodging prices for this retreat have been reduced by between 20% and 40%, depending on lodging type, to support the sangha in practicing at Shambhala Mountain Center. Learn more about Financial Assistance and Scholarships.

Mahamudra, the “great seal,” is among the most profound streams of teaching and practice of Vajrayana Buddhism. Revered as a powerful support for all other tantric practices, it is also extremely simple and direct, focused on recognizing and gaining confidence in the nature of mind through direct experience.

This year, the practice text will be Pointing Out the Dharmakaya, the classic liturgy by Wangchuk Dorje, the Ninth Karmapa. We will incorporate pith instructions by Yeshe Tsogyal, Lodro Thaye, Paltrul Rinpoche, Rangjung Dorje, Chogyam Trungpa and Sakyong Mipham.

The Retreat will be mostly silent, with times for circle conversation. Each day will include the physical practices of Lujong, Shamatha Yoga, and Lungtse. We will include the Stroke of Ashe, and there will be two sessions for Scorpion Seal practitioners to do the “morning practices” from SSA.

This retreat is appropriate for Shambhala tantrikas at all levels of practice. First-time participants must begin at the beginning and commit to the entire 9–day retreat. Participants who have already done a Mahamudra retreat using Pointing Out the Daharmakaya may attend as much of the retreat as they wish, starting from the beginning of the retreat. To register, please click on the “Register Now” button above and use the “Comments” box to type “Departure: [type the date you’ll depart], and for Payment select “Personal Check” from the dropdown list to bypass payment. This will register you, automatically notify us, and will not charge your card. We’ll edit your arrival & departure dates and finances, and contact you for credit card information. Thank you!

Prerequisite: Sacred World Assembly or Vajrayana Seminary in the Shambhala Tradition, or pointing out transmission from a Rinpoche in the Kagyu or Nyingma Lineages. Participants will need to bring a copy of the Pointing Out the Dharmakaya liturgy and sourcebook (not the published book) which will be sold at the SMC gift store and is also available from Nalanda Translation Committee. 

Acharya Richard John

An early student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Acharya John was appointed as Acharya
by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, and now teaches Shambhala Buddhist programs
throughout North America. Having completed the first Three-Year Retreat at Gampo
Abbey, Acharya John has led annual Mahamudra retreats at Shambhala land centers for
twenty years.


Program Details

Registration takes place from 2– 5 pm on your program start date. All participants and volunteer staff must check in at our Guest Registration house. Please arrive before 5 pm to check in and settle into your accommodations. Your program begins with dinner, followed by an orientation. The Guest Registration house closes at 5 pm after which no one is available to provide information or orient you to your accommodations. All programs usually end at 12:30 pm on the program's departure date, followed by lunch. Further specifics regarding your program's schedule will be available upon arrival. If applicable, you will receive an email from the program coordinator in the week prior to your program with any additional information you may need.