More than a Retreat Center: Buddhist Meditation in the Mahamudra Dzogchen Tradition
PRIMORDIAL PURITY and SPONTANEOUS PRESENCE
Vajra Vidya means “Indestructible Heart Wisdom” or “Diamond Knowledge”, the ever flowing clear awake stillness of the natural state; and also affectionately refers to 16th Gyalwa Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje , the previous spiritual leader of the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. He personally visited Crestone and declared a prophecy of this as a place to preserve the Dharma, practice sincerely and where many would attain realization as great Siddhas or beings of compassionate spiritual power.
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche; Tulku Urgyen; Thrangu Rinpoche; Tsoknyi Rinpoche; Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche and many other masters from various traditions have come here, conducted ceremony and echoed this declaration. Thrangu Rinpoche chose the site and established Vajra Vidya Retreat Center to support this intention.
With the wish to free all beings from the stormy waves of birth, old age, sickness and death may your time at VVRC allow your mind to rest uncontrived in the Heart of True Nature.
Our Shrine Room
The Retreat Center Shrine Room holds a palpable stream of spiritual blessings flowing from the ancient Karma Kagyu and Nyingma practice lineages of Buddhism.
The uplifting environment offers a rare and precious atmosphere which contains an 8 ft central statue of Shakyamuni Buddha; 21 forms of Tara; 8 Medicine Buddha statues and 1,000 statues representing Buddhas yet to come.
This sacred space holds all the necessary elements for deep meditation practice and transmits devotional energies of the many ceremonies, daily meditations, prayers and teaching given here over the years.
Vajra Vidya conducts it’s activities in the spirit of “Rime” or “non- sectarian” universal Buddhist studies. Practitioners from all faiths and lineages benefit from the center.
DAILY MEDITATION: All are welcome to attend our daily morning meditations from 9-10 am which include traditional aspiration prayers and quiet sitting.
Thrangu Rinpoche is the open hearted embodiment of joy, kindness and dedication he shares with others. He established Vajra Vidya Retreat Center as an authentic practice center for those in the West seeking to know their own true nature.
He has vast knowledge of the Dharma and his skills as a teacher are renowned. He is a recognized master of Mahamudra Meditation and personal tutor for His Holiness the 17th Karmapa.
He works tirelessly around the globe to promote the values of peace, dignity, self-realization and service to humanity. We have been extremely fortunate to have Thrangu Rinpoche offer many teachings and empowerments at V.V.R.C.
Guidance and Study
For your practice and study, the Vajra Vidya Retreat Center is a modern retreat center with a 35 acre campus. Explore both inner and outer nature in a beautiful setting. You are invited to do retreats from two nights or longer extended stays.
Two of Thrangu Rinpoche’s senior Khenpos—Khenpo Lobzang and Khenpo Jigme –are experienced qualified teachers at V.V.R.C.
They offer instruction in personal meditation and various traditional practices.; lead daily meditation practice and teach specialized courses in Buddhist philosophy, cultivating inner knowledge and applying skillful means.
Our Beautiful Surroundings
The Vajra Vidya Retreat Center is located in Crestone Colorado. This town reports a population of less than a thousand people but seems to have three or four times that number during the summer/fall seasons. Crestone is home to numerous spiritual training and service groups, Temples, Stupas, hiking trails, wildflowers, striking vistas and interesting people.
The Retreat Center, which is at 8,200 feet in elevation, is nestled in the protective base of five stunning fourteen thousand foot peaks of the Sangre de Cristo (blood of Christ) Mountain Range and faces the San Luis Valley.
Thrangu Rinpoche personally chose the location of V.V.R.C. specifically for it’s unique qualities. The geography of the San Luis Valley itself creates an unusual energetic container around Crestone which has historically been considered conducive for spiritual practice and renewal.
The immediate area is adjacent to the unique Great Sand Dunes National Park. Bold streams feed the vast aquifer beneath the valley and help sustain a variety of wildlife and flora. Three popular hot springs are located in the area. Across the valley the national wetlands sanctuary is home to the yearly winter migration of the Sandhill Cranes and numerous other birds.
Please see the ABOUT THE CENTER section for directions and Map.
Our Support Staff
Khenpo Lobzang was the Director of Vajra Vidya Institute,Sarnath India and, along with his many administrative responsibilities, he taught shedra classes for the monks, seminar classes for foreign students and was a guest lecturer at Central University of Tibet Studies in Sarnath. As Director he keeps things running smoothly and drops pithy bits of wisdom with joy and compassion.
Khenpo Jigme is skilled in both Buddhist philosophy, ritual, and meditation. He has served as a main teacher at Namo Buddha and Vajra Vidya Institues in Sarnath, India. He has been teaching western students since 2005. His joy and exuberance in teaching the Dharma are boundless!
Himani came to the Dharma Path after 25 years of practice in the
Himalayan Yogic Tradition. In 2008 she was introduced to the wondrous teachings of the Buddha. She is most dedicated and her focus is on providing a warm and supportive environment for retreatants.
Adam is a most experienced retreat cook and has cooked for retreat centers worldwide. Meals are always a delight and he has the shiniest pots and pans on the western side of the Mississippi!