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Special Events at Kagyu Samye Dzong Glasgow

  •  2019 Programme


    Choje Lama Rinpoche

    Choje Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche, our beloved and respected Abbot and spiritual guide is, through his many years joyously devoted to the diligent practice of The Lord Buddha’s Teachings, one of the greatest meditation masters in the world today. None other than His Holiness the 17th Karmapa said of him that if you wanted to know about meditation, look no further than Lama Yeshe Losal. There can be no higher recommendation, so we are indeed very fortunate.

    Appointed as the Abbot of Kagyu Samye Ling monastery in 1992, Lama Rinpoche has seen it continue to flourish and since the passing of his brother, Choje Akong Rinpoche in 2013, Lama Rinpoche has fearlessly taken on the responsibilities of his brother as well as his own, and due to his immense compassion, coupled with his single pointed determination and wisdom, has ensured that all these activities are continuing to flourish and thrive.

    Drupon Khen Rinpoche

    From the age of 2, his exceptional potential was first noticed, taking Getsul ordination aged 13, and by the time he was 18, he thought “I must accomplish this Dharma which is beneficial in this and all future lives” and entered a solitary retreat. A year later he entered a traditional 3 year retreat where he received many Dharma teachings and excellently accomplished many recitations and approach and accomplishment practices. Then he was given, stage by stage the essential points of profound Mahamudra and Dzogchen. 

    From this point onwards he strove with one pointed determination for the true nature of genuine reality. 

    Since then, he has gone on to receive many more teachings from the greatest teachers of the Kagyu and Nyingma Lineages.

    In 2008, he was invited by Akong Rinpoche to come to Scotland as Khenpo and Retreat master, and has returned to Scotland every year since, as retreat master(Drupon) and to lead the Sherda studies.

    Gelongma Lama Zangmo

    Lama Gelongma Zangmo first became a practising Buddhist when she arrived at Kagyu Samye Ling in 1977 and took refuge with His Holiness the 16th Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpe Dorje. Having received teachings from many highly respected lamas who visited Kagyu Samye Ling, she was inspired to enter the four-year closed retreat in 1984, during which time she became ordained as a Buddhist nun.

    When the next long retreat started in 1989 Lama Zangmo wished to further her retreat experience and she was also asked to help and advise the new retreatants. Having completed that retreat in 1993, Lama Zangmo then entered a third long retreat and became the resident retreat teacher to the other women retreatants. That retreat ended in 1997, bringing the total number of years Lama Zangmo spent in retreat to eleven and a half.

    In 1998 Lama Zangmo was one of a group of nuns who accompanied Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche to India, where she became fully ordained as a Gelongma (Bhikkuni) at a historic ceremony in Bodhgaya. This will in turn enable others to take full Gelongma ordination with the Tibetan Buddhist tradition in the future.

    Lama Zangmo’s strong connection with Kagyu lineage and in particular with Choje Akong Tulku Rinpoche and Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche has inspired her to work tirelessly and joyfully in service to the Dharma and helping others. In recognition of her long experience, selfless qualities and commitment, she became the first person in the UK to be honoured with the title of Lama by our organisation at a heart warming ceremony in Kagyu Samye Dzong London in June 2001.

    This has given Lama Zangmo a wealth of experience on which to draw as she joyously Teaches the Dharma.

    Dharmacarya Ken Holmes

    in 1970 Ken spent 6 months in Dharamsala, studying with the monks and lamas around HH the Dalai Lama. From there he went to Kagyu Samye Ling in Scotland, the first Tibetan Buddhist centre established in the West. Kagyu Samye Ling has been his base for the past 36 years, during which time his life has been devoted to making Tibetan Buddhist meditation and philosophy available to the Western world. With his wife Katia, he has co-translated some of the main Kagyu teaching texts into English, as well as much of the liturgy used in daily practice. Their works include the principal Kagyu textbook - Gampopa's Tarjen, published as "Gems of Dharma, Jewels of Freedom" and Asanga's Mahayana Uttara Tantra Shastra, published as "Maitreya on Buddha Nature".
    In 1977, after five years principally dedicated to the practice of meditation under the guidance of Chujé Akong Tulku Rinpoche, Ken spent six months travelling with His Holiness the Sixteenth Karmapa as his assistant for the European tour. It was during this time that His Holiness encouraged him and Katia to study Kagyu texts intensively and to prepare accurate English translations based upon the traditional lineage explanations. During those six months and in the six months which followed, their studies were closely guided by Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche. Following that, they studied under, and interpreted for, Kalu Rinpoche, Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, the Tai Situpa, the Goshir Gyaltsabpa, Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche and the other masters who spent long moments in those early years at Samye Ling. In the 1990s, Ken studied the principal theories of traditional Tibetan medicine and astrology, under the guidance of the late Khenpo Troru Tsenam Rinpoche, former abbot of Katok and Troru monasteries and holder of two university chairs. The latter gave Ken the dharmacarya (Dharma Teacher) title in 2002.
    From the Gyalwa Karmapa and these senior lamas, Ken received transmission of many of the main Kagyu sadhanas. However, he was unable to participate as planned in the traditional three-year retreats where they are practised, due to work duties helping Akong Rinpoche develop Samye Ling. Akong Rinpoche therefore encouraged Ken to concentrate on the meditation teachings of the non-sadhana mahamudra tradition, from Saraha. Ken has spent the past thirty years endeavouring to apply these, receiving transmission mainly through the "Ocean of Certainty" text, first under the guidance of Chujé Akong Rinpoché and then twice under the 12th Khentin Tai Situpa.

    Clive Holmes

    Clive Holmes has been teaching meditation for the last twenty years all over the UK, as well as in Samye Dzong centres overseas. He has completed over a year in intensive retreat and has studied in Europe and India with teachers from Burma, South East Asia, Japan and Tibet. He also has a degree in western philosophy. He is co-editor of  the books "Taming the Tiger"and "Restoring the Balance" by Choje Akong Tulku Rinpoche.  He also has an honorary appointment as Teaching Fellow in the School of Education at Aberdeen University and is involved in teaching MSc Mindfulness.




    Dates and times

    Clive Holmes   26th January

    10am – 4pm

    New Year New Beginnings

    “Changing habits of a lifetime”

    Every time we give in to a harmful habit from our past, we reinforce our limitations.  Would you rather be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future? Once we truly see, and accept, our habits, we can then embrace the ones that are helpful and let go of the ones that are harmful. Of course, this is not so easy. So together we will encourage one another to improve our life experience. Every moment gives us the opportunity to experience ourselves in a different way.

    Again and again the central message will be to simplify our ways of experience. We cannot change the world to fit in with all of our expectations; yet we can learn to be flexible and adaptable, accepting things as they are. 

    Gelongma Lama Zangmo  24th February

    10am – 4pm

    The Precious Garland

    The Precious Garland is a text by Gampopa which gives precise instructions on the view, meditation and conduct of a practitioner and outlines what we need to know in order to perfect our spiritual practice.

    Lama Zangmo will start from the beginning of this text and go through some of the chapters, explaining them in more detail. Each chapter is divided into ten or more points, all around a specific topic which helps us to see what we need to work through on our own personal path.

    This course will be a combination of teachings, actual meditation sessions and time for question and answers. It is suitable for anyone wishing to deepen their understanding of Buddhism and gain more experience in their meditation practice.

    Gampopa, also known as Dhakpo Rinpoche, is one of the most important figures in the Kagyu lineage and is the founder of the monastic order of the Kagyu School.

    Clive Holmes   9th March

    Topic tbc 10am – 4pm

    Dharmacarya Ken Holmes   27th April

    Topic tbc 10am – 4pm

    Choje Lama Rinpoche   date tbc

    Topic tbc   time tbc

    Drupon Khen Rinpoche   13th October

    Topic tbc 7pm – 9pm