by John LaFrance
No matter how many times ones ascends to the top of Khandroling and enters the Vajra Hall with the Universal Mandala, there’s always a moment of awe and appreciation for Rinpoche’s vision and contributions to the Dzogchen Community. It was no different at the start of this year’s annual Summer Sangha Retreat. Community members from North America gathered to renew our practice and enjoy the special energy that happens when we meet.
This year’s retreat focused on deepening our practice with the help of SMS instructors Lynn Newdome who gave instructions for newcomers on Integrating the teachings and Integrating with Sound and Mariano Gill who led practices of Shine/Lhatong, Guru Yoga of the White Ah and the Semdzin of the Song of the Vajra. In addition our local dance instructor Bodhi led the 12 Ah and Goma Devi dances and Yantra Yoga instructors Paula Barry and Naomi Zeitz led Yantra Yoga on the mat and on a chair. It was a special blessing to also have Dr. Phuntsog Wangmo explain and lead the Medicine Buddha and Shitro practices. Michael Katz also led an online Dream Yoga event co-sponsored by the Russian Dzogchen Community with attendance online by members worldwide.
Each afternoon we were especially fortunate to be able to view Rinpoche’s entire retreat on the Mejung Tantra through the auspices of the archive at Merigar. Having the video on a big screen was like experiencing a retreat with the Master, again!
The gathering concluded with a Community Meeting in which members shared many fruitful ideas for future gatherings followed by a Community BBQ and auction which raised needed funds for both Tsegyalgar East and the Shang Shung Institute’s School of Tibetan Medicine.
Following shortly after the Summer Retreat,Tsegyalgar East will host Vajra dancers from around the globe for Dance, Dance, Dance at Khandroling, the Land of the Dakinis, led by International Vajra Dance Teacher Prima Mai and Vajra Dance Instructors Bodhi, Kyu Kyuno and Carisa O’Kelly.
Tsegyalgar’s energy remains strong.