Knowing What Has Been Pointed Out: The Trekchö Instructions of Yeshe Tsögyal

Acharya Richard John

July 2–9, 2021

Tuition + 7 nights

The purpose of this retreat is to strengthen the recognition and direct experience of the guru’s vajrayana transmission. The practice framework will be based on a pith teaching called “Realization of the Ground,” which Yeshe Tsögyal received from Vajrayogini in a dream. This terma disappeared for a thousand years, then reappeared in the 19th century. These pith instructions (upadesha) are an incomparable and practical teaching on the practice of trekchö, “cutting through to primordial purity,” which is the dzogchen equivalent of mahamudra.

During this intensive practice retreat Yeshe Tsogyal’s instructions will be augmented by profound instructions from Mipham Rinpoche, Garab Dorje, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, and other great masters.

PREREQUISITE: It is imperative that participants have received pointing out transmission at a Vajrayana Seminary or Sacred World Assembly, or from a Kagyu or Nyingma Rinpoche. It is important to commit to the entire retreat schedule.

This is a hybrid program and you are on the registration page to attend in-person at SMC. If you prefer to attend from home, you can  REGISTER FOR THE ONLINE PROGRAM at this link.

Please review SMC’s current COVID-19 policy at this link, thanks.

General Schedule

A more specific daily schedule will be sent out with the program welcome letter. All times are in MDT.

7:00am  Morning Chants and Suchness Meditation
9:15am  Guru Yoga / ARJ Commentary / Practice Sessions
3:00pm  Guru Yoga / ARJ Commentary / Practice Sessions
5:00pm  ARJ Talk / Q&A
6:00pm  Protector & Evening Chants
7:30pm  Discussion Circle (some nights)
8:30pm  Conclude

— Gentle Silence during the evening hours —

Heart Gift

It is customary to offer a monetary heart gift to the teacher.  Like so many, Acharya John has had a substantial loss of income during the pandemic, and he is taking a reduced honorarium in order to help SMC. The heart gift is completely voluntary according to your inspiration, and any amount is appreciated.

Cash, checks and Paypal will be accepted.


Portions of this program will be recorded.


Acharya Richard John

A longtime student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, Acharya John has for many years taught Shambhala Buddhist programs throughout North America. He completed the first three-year group retreat at Gampo Abbey–where he first encountered these teachings–and leads mahamudra retreats at Dorje Denma Ling, Karme Chöling, SMC and Casa Werma. Richard and his wife Liz live in Halifax, Nova Scotia.


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. This program departs after breakfast on the final day. 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.