THE VOICE OF CLEAR LIGHT – Special Announcement Issue

News and Inspiration from Ligmincha Institute

Volume 9, Number 3 March 2009

For easy reading, we recommend that you print out "The Voice of Clear Light."

Live Internet teachings with Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche in April
Upcoming Retreats at Ligmincha’s Serenity Ridge Retreat Center
Ancient Tibetan Prayer Flags Offer Hope for Troubled Times

April 19, 2009 (Sunday), 3:30-5:00 p.m. LIVE INTERNET TEACHING with Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche
Please join us from your home computer as Rinpoche guides the practice of Sherap Chamma, a simple yet profound meditation practice that cultivates wisdom, love and compassion. For our Internet audience only, via live streaming video. To learn more and access the broadcast site, go to: ***

April 22, 2009 (Wed.), 7-8:30 p.m. TRANSCENDING FEAR Internet broadcast of Free Public Talk in Charlottesville by Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche On April 22 Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche will give his third live Internet teaching of 2009. In this 90-minute broadcast Rinpoche will be teaching from Ligmincha Institute's meditation center in downtown Charlottesville, Va. The public is invited to attend this free public talk in person or to view from a home computer. During this broadcast Rinpoche will draw on ancient Tibetan wisdom as he explains how you can transcend fear and live more joyfully even during uncertain or threatening times. Rinpoche presents the ancient Bon teachings in a way that is fresh and relevant to modern daily life. For more information and to enter the broadcast site, go to:


Ligmincha Institute’s retreat center in Nelson County, Va. To registeor for more information about teachings in the Bon Buddhist tradition of Tibet, please visit or contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 434-977-6161.

April 13-14, 2009 Prayer Flag Worksho
With Lharila Kalsang Nyima and Geshe Tenzin Yeshe

The flags are printed with prayers and auspicious symbols on cloth whose colors represent the five natural elements. When raised, theseflags create an uplifting energy and transmit blessings, protection anhealing power to all corners of the universe.

The geshes witll guide students in the traditional method of printing prayer flags on colored cloth using carved wooden blocks. They will explain how to raise the flags with the right mindset both inside the home and outdoors, where the flags typically are hung to blow in the breeze until they disintegrate in the elements. This stand-alone workshop serves as an ideal introduction to the retreat that follows with Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche, “Riding the Wind Horse of Good Fortune,” during which participants will learn more about the rituals for raising prayer flags.

Riding the Wind Hor
and Prosperity With Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche
limited support not only from the human realm but also from the worldof nature and the spirits. The ancient Tibetan rituals of the wind horse provide a way to communicate clearly and directly with the spirits of nature in order to gain their support and raise our prosperity, personal power and good fortune. This April at Ligmincha Institute's Serenity the mountains of central Virginia, Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche will teach shamanic rituals that Tibetans have practiced for thousands of years and which have their origins in the Bon tradition, the indigenouspiritual tradition of Tibet. This is an opportunity for participants
to gain knowledge of practices such as Sang Cho and the raising of prayer flags, while intimately connecting with and raising the uplifting qualities and energies engendered by these powerful ri In his 20 years of living and teaching in the West, Tenzin Rinpoche has become renowned for his ability to convey the ancient wisdom of Bon Buddhism in a way that is immediately relevant, inspiring, and applicable to the needs of modern Western students. Teparticipated in these rituals to join him at Serenity Ridge in this annual opportunity for healing. Retreat cost: $525
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The Six Lokas Purificati
A dzogchen retreat with Khenpo Tenpa
are pleased to announce that Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung R
abbot of Triten Norbutse Monastery, Kathmandu, Nepal, will again be teaching at Serenity Ridge this year. Through the power of the Meditation of the Six Lokas one relates to the emotional afflictions associated with each of the six realms of cyclic existence and purifies them in one’s own life. These afflictions are the six destructive emotions that are the obstacles to enlightenment: anger, greed, ignorance, jealousy, pride, and pleasurable distraction. During this retreat Khen Rinpoche will explain how mantra, imagery, and the base of contemplation can deeply purify the seeds of our karmic patterns and support the healing that comes from resting in one’s trunature, the source of all joy and happiness. Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung Rinpoche welcomes everSerenity Ridge when he offers commentary, practice instructions, and transmission of the Meditation of the Six Lokas. Retreat cost: $525
register: https://www
ne 3 - 7, 2009
The Experiential Transmission of Zhang Zhung, Part One: Ngondro - Dzogchen Foundational Practices
With Ponlop Trinley Nyima Rinpoche
This year we are again very fortunate to have Ponlop Trinley Nyima Rinpoche, the head teacher at Menri Monastery, India, teaching these beautiful and essential practices to us. The Ngondro, Part 1 of the Experiential Transmission of Zhang Zhung, is the entrance to a cycle of Bon dzogchen, or “Great Perfection,” teachings, which until the past decade were part of a secret transmission passed one-to-one from master to student. The ngondro teachings, a complete set of practices in themselves, offer instructions for taming, purifying, and perfecting oneself; and are the prerequisite for further study of the Experiential Transmission of Zhang Zhung. Although the practices that make up the ngondro are called preliminary or foundational practices, many practitioners adopt them as their main practice and complete the nine parts several times over the course of a lifetime. Within each of these beautiful and powerful practices is contained the entire path to liberation. The ngondro is the traditional method that provides a solid foundation of understanding and experience upon which a strong spiritual life can be developed. The practices of the ngondro can accompany the practitioner through the years like a lifelong friend. Students who attend this Ngondro retreat with Ponlop Rinpoche will be eligible to study Part 2 of the Experiential Transmission of Zhang Zhung with Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche at our 2009 winter retreat. Retreat cost (includes meals): $450 received by April 22; $525 received after April 22
Please visit Ligmincha’s Web site for further information and to register:,com_retreat/Itemid,138/retreat_id,35/
June 3 - 7, 2009
Ngondro Practice Retreat
Practice leader to be announced
Students who have received ngondro teachings and transmission are warmly invited to attend this practice retreat, which will focus on the practice of ngondro. This retreat will take place concurrently with the ngondro retreat with Ponlop Trinley Nyima Rinpoche (above); practitioners will meet in the Garuda House meditation room.
Tenzin Rinpoche highly recommends this intensive practice retreat for those students who received the ngondro teachings from him at the 2008 winter retreat as well as for other students who have received ngondro transmission in recent years and are practicing in preparation for the Part 2 teachings of the Experiential Transmission in December 2009.
The ngondro practice retreat offers a wonderful opportunity to experience the benefits of group practice within the boundary of our blessed and protected retreat land. The presence of the Ponlop Rinpoche and other students engaged in study and practice of the ngondro will add a powerful support for deep engagement with these beautiful and essential foundational practices of our lineage.
Special practice retreat price: $225.
June 21 – June 27
Summer Work Retreat
Free of charge. Whether you join us for one afternoon or the full week, this is a wonderful time to share with sangha and to be of joyful service. Our work retreat includes vigorous work periods, daily meditation practice, and ample time for a swim in the pool or a walk along the Rockfish River. Participants are provided with free tenting and meals, and for those who participate in the entire work retreat there will be a 50 percent discount on one week of the summer retreat.
For more information or to register, please email Ligmincha: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call us at 434-977-6161.
June 28 – July 18, 2009
Summer Retreat 2009: A-Tri Dzogchen
With Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche
This summer, at Ligmincha Institute's Serenity Ridge Retreat Center, Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche will present the complete (15-part) cycle of A-Tri dzogchen teachings. This is the first time that Tenzin Rinpoche will teach this complete cycle in the West during a single retreat. The A-Tri teachings are from one of three major lineages of dzogchen teachings from the Bon Buddhist tradition of Tibet (the two others are the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyu and Dzogchen lineages). They present very simple, clear and direct instructions for integrating spiritual practice through the three doors of body, speech and mind. Tenzin Rinpoche feels that the three-week format of the summer retreat will create ideal conditions for an in-depth study of this powerful dzogchen system of mind training. Week 1 will focus on practices to purify and awaken awareness of the nature of mind through the body; Week 2 through speech; and Week 3 through the mind. The A-Tri teachings are a way to receive a full cycle of dzogchen teachings in a relatively short time (three weeks, rather than many months or years). These teachings not only are a great introduction for beginners, they also complement study of the Experiential Transmission system from which Tenzin Rinpoche teaches each winter.
Because of the integrated nature of these teachings and the manner in which each week will build on the one before, Rinpoche strongly recommends that people come to all three weeks so they can receive the complete cycle. If this is not possible, Rinpoche suggests you come to at least two weeks. If you are new to Serenity Ridge, or able to come for only one week, Rinpoche recommends that you come to the first week, when an in-depth explanation of the practices will be offered. It is Tenzin Rinpoche's sincere wish that through this intensive study and practice opportunity, each student will find his or her own door to a life that is physically healthy, energetically vital and spiritually fulfilling.
Retreat cost (includes meals; accommodations are available): Week 1 and Week 3: $500 received by May 11; $575 received after May 11. Week 2 (includes auction banquet): $515 by May 11; $590 received after May 11.
FOR MORE INFORMATION about this retreat or to register, visit and click on “Retreats,” or go directly to:,com_retreat/Itemid,131/retreat_id,41/
DETAILED INFORMATION ABOUT A-TRI DZOGCHEN PRACTICE can be found in the book “The Stages of A-Khrid Meditation,” by Bru-sgom rGyal-ba g.yung-drung, translated by Per Kvaerne and Thupten K. Rikey. Available from Ligmincha Institute's Bookstore & Tibet Shop. Visit:
A WIDE VARIETY OF OTHER BOOKS ON DZOGCHEN ("The Great Perfection") can also be purchased from Ligmincha's Bookstore & Tibet Shop. Visit:
To register for any of the above retreats, or for more information about teachings in the Bon Buddhist tradition of Tibet, please visit or contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 434-977-6161.
This April, Bon Buddhist lamas will teach Westerners the ancient art and wisdom of Tibetan Buddhist prayer flags, to bring good fortune and prosperity in uncertain times.
While wealth and abundance may not be reflected in our bank accounts these days, they could be fluttering toward us on the wind.
Hanging colorful prayer flags on a tree outside your home can bring prosperity, inner strength, wisdom and good fortune, according to ancient Tibetan Buddhist traditions.
The good fortune doesn’t stop there. The prayers waft into the atmosphere to bless all beings in the universe. Not a bad return on a simple investment of cloth and string.
On April 13-14, 2009, this ancient and beautiful tradition of creating prayer flags will be taught by Tibetan lamas at Ligmincha Institute’s Serenity Ridge retreat center ( near Charlottesville, Va.
Tibetan lamas Lharila Kalsang Nyima and Geshe Tenzin Yeshe will guide students in the traditional method of printing prayer flags using carved wooden blocks. The lamas will explain the spiritual significance of the flags and show participants how to raise them with the right mindset to bring happiness, long life, prosperity and wellbeing.
These lamas hail from the Tibetan Bon tradition, the ancient indigenous culture of Tibet, form which prayer flags are believed to have originated thousands of years ago. Many fear that the Bon culture – one of the world’s most ancient cultural and spiritual traditions – is in danger of being lost as so many Tibetan Bon practitioners have been displaced from their homeland under Chinese rule.
Instruction on the Tibetan tradition of creating health, vitality and good fortune continues April 15-19 when Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche teaches “Riding the Wind Horse of Good Fortune: Increasing Your Inner Strength and Prosperity.”
Tenzin Wangyal – an accomplished author and international teacher – will instruct students in the ancient “Sang Chod” ritual surrounding the raising of prayer flags and show how these powerful teachings are important in today’s world.
[Retreat details above]
History of Prayer Flags
For many centuries the Tibetan people draped prayer flags from homes and trees, monasteries and mountain peaks in the Himalaya to bless the surrounding countryside. The tradition is believed to have originated in the Tibetan Bon tradition, the ancient indigenous culture that predated Buddhism in Tibet.
The prayer flags are printed with sacred images, symbols and mantras which are carried on the wind out to benefit the world.
Red, blue, green, yellow and white rectangles of cloth are strung to form the flags. These colors represent the five elements, which in the Bon tradition are fire (red), water (blue), air (green), earth (yellow) and space (white).
The flags are hung in a specific order and sequence. Though traditionally hung outside, they can also be hung indoors where slight movements of air send vibrations and blessings out of the home and into the world.
Originally the writings and renderings on prayer flags were hand painted. Later wood blocks allowed artists to reproduce the designs with a printing process. Since prayer flags were discouraged under Chinese rule, many of the traditional prayer flags today are made in Nepal and India by Tibetan refugees.
[Prayer flags are available for purchase at Ligmincha’s Bookstore and Tibet Shop. Visit the website for further details: HTTPS://WWW.LIGMINCHA.ORG/STORE/VIEW-ALL-PRODUCTS-IN-SHOP.HTML ]

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