Bodhi Path Annual Teachings with Shamar Rinpoche & Meditation Retreat

Two Summer Programs
at Bodhi Path Natural Bridge, VA

Program 1:

The Path to Awakening: Shamar Rinpoche's Annual Teaching Program on the Profound Practice of Mind Training
June 24 to 26, 2011

- and -
Annual Bodhi Path Members Meeting
June 27, 2011

Followed by
Program 2:

Conscious Breathing:
A 5-day Silent Meditation Retreat Led by Dharma Teacher Tsony
June 28 (evening intro) to July 3, 2011

New this year:

Dharma Movie Night and
Dharma Teacher's Panel Discussion
Details TBA

Program 1: The Path to Awakening
by Shamar Rinpoche
June 24-26

Mind Training, or Lojong, is a comprehensive practice which embodies the entire path to awakening. The Buddha recognized that we suffer because of our negative actions. Conversely, when we act positively, everyone benefits. In order to act positively in any situation, we must train our mind.

Mind Training nurtures and cultivates Buddha Nature, the pure seed of awakening at the heart of every sentient being. It has the power to transform egotistical actions into selfless generosity and compassion. Put into practice diligently, Lojong can lead to full awakening.

Shamar Rinpoche's book, The Path to Awakening: A Commentary on Ja Chekawa's Seven Points of Mind Training, edited and translated by Lara Braitstein, PhD, is the basis of this teaching program. Rinpoche will continue to explain the inner meaning of Chekawa's Seven Points.

In addition to Rinpoche's program, there will be a dharma movie night and a panel discussion with visiting dharma teachers. We will conclude with a celebration, Sunday evening, June 26.

Shamar Rinpoche
Shamar Rinpoche is the 14th Shamarpa, or Red Hat Lama of Tibet, the second-oldest reincarnate lineage. Rinpoche was born in 1952 and spent many years studying in India with Buddhist scholars. He began to travel and teach throughout Asia and the West in 1980. In 1996, he organized the Bodhi Path Buddhist Centers, a worldwide network of centers based on a non-sectarian approach to Buddhism. The curriculum of Bodhi Path centers is grounded in the teachings of the 11th century Indian Buddhist master Atisha, as they were transmitted by Gampopa.


Friday-Saturday, June 24-25
Teaching by Shamar Rinpoche.
Two sessions per day, 10 am to noon, 2 to 4 pm. Lunch provided.
Q & A with Dharma Teacher Tsony will follow an afternoon tea break at 4:30.
Program is open to all students.

Sunday morning, June 26
Teaching by Shamar Rinpoche continues.
One session only, 10 am to noon. A blessing will conclude Rinpoche's program.

Sunday afternoon, June 26
Dharma Teacher's panel discussion, 3 pm.
Sitting Posture Tune-up: The mechanics of proper meditation posture, and yoga stretches to support stable practice and ease discomfort. Taught by Dharma Teacher Rachel Parrish and Chris Fang, 4:30 pm.

Sunday evening, June 26
Bodhi Path celebration. 6 pm. Family and friends invited. Supper provided. Entertainment requested. Please bring your musical instruments and favorite dharma songs.

Monday, June 27
Bodhi Path members meeting. 10 am to 3 pm. This is an administrative meeting, primarily of interest to those involved in the day-to-day matters of their Bodhi Path Center.

Lunch will be provided at all events. Supper will be provided at the celebration.

*Dharma Movie Night date/time TBA

Program 2: 5-day Silent Meditation Retreat
led by Dharma Teacher Tsony
June 28 (evening intro)-July 3

"Mind needs to be tamed; thoughts controlled. To accomplish this you need to learn calm abiding meditation. First learn how to sit. Then in order to train the mind to concentrate, focus on your breath."
—Shamar Rinpoche

Based on instructions from Shamar Rinpoche's teaching and his book, The Path to Awakening, Dharma Teacher Tsony will lead a retreat, which explores the preliminaries of mind training. Practice will focus on methods for shamatha meditation to develop mind's stability, as well as reduce distraction and self-clinging. This program is a perfect opportunity to deepen understanding of Rinpoche's teaching through practice.

Dharma Teacher Tsony
A Buddhist monk for over 25 years, Tsony completed two traditional 3-year retreats under the guidance of the great meditation master Gendun Rinpoche. For 15 years, he was Abbot of Kundrel Ling Monastery in France. Since 1999 he has been teaching philosophy and meditation throughout Europe and the U.S. He is now the resident teacher at Bodhi Path Natural Bridge.


Tuesday evening, June 28
7 to 8:30 pm. Introduction to retreat.

Wednesday-Saturday, June 29-July 2
9 am to 6 pm. Lunch provided.

Sunday, July 3
9 am to noon. A picnic celebration will follow the conclusion of the retreat.

You may attend any or all of the meditation sessions, however, to preserve an atmosphere of tranquility, please enter the meditation hall only during a break.

General Information


All events for both programs will take place at Bodhi Path Natural Bridge, located eight miles south of Lexington, Virginia, at the south end of the beautiful Shenandoah Valley.

Address: 12 Bodhi Path, Natural Bridge, VA, 24578.


Please make your reservations directly with the establishment of choice as soon as possible.


For other accommodations 10+ miles from the center, please visit the Lexington Visitors Center's website at

Natural Bridge KOA. 540-291-2770. RV hook-ups, small cabins, tents. 2 miles from the center.

A shared house
For a few people attending both programs we have rented historic Middleton House, 111 South Jefferson Street, Lexington, to share. This lovely, completely renovated house has four bedrooms, two with queen beds ($50 per night), one with a double bed ($45 per night) and one with twin beds ($45 per bed per night). All have private bathrooms and there is a full kitchen. (To view house go to Located 9 miles from the Bodhi Path Center and walking distance to downtown Lexington, this house is available to the first people (1 or 2 couples and 3 or 4 singles) registering for both programs. Accommodation must be paid in full at time of registration. Please note: We are sorry, but there can be no refund for cancellations after June 1. Email to inquire about availability.

For a few people staying for Tsony's retreat, several spaces in cabins on site may become available after Rinpoche's program is over. $35 per person per night. Email to inquire about availability.


The closest airport is in Roanoke, Virginia, about 45 miles from the Bodhi Path. Car rental available at airport.
Limo Service available from: Roanoke Airport Transportation Service, 540-345-7710, and Prestige Limousine, Inc., 540-342-8049. Price depends on number of people traveling together. Call for pricing. Make arrangements early to insure availability.

Lynchburg, Virginia, is a regional airport about one and a half hours from the center. This airport is often cheapest for those flying from the west. You will need a rental car from this airport.

Washington DC airports, Dulles International or Reagan International, about 200 and 210 miles respectively. You will need a rental car if you fly into either of these airports

Baltimore International Airport, about 240 miles from the center. You will need a rental car if you fly into this airport.

Some special travel deals:
For folks coming from Florida or points south, check Allegiant Air's website for very cheap flights directly into Roanoke. However, Allegiant only flies from Tampa/St. Petersburg or Orlando. If you go on the site and sign up for their newsletter, they will let you know when they have the $9 sale to Roanoke! From New York City, Delta Airlines has a $150 round trip ticket to Lewisburg, West Virginia, which is a1.5 hour drive to Bodhi Path.

Ride Sharing:
Ride sharing information will be sent out with confirmation of registration.


Program 1: Shamar Rinpoche's Teaching, "The Path to Awakening"
$250 for entire program including teaching, celebration and lunch. (Housing additional.)

Program 2: Dharma Teacher Tsony's 5-Day Meditation Retreat
$150 for entire retreat or $40 per day. Lunch included. (Housing additional.)

If attending both programs:
$350. (Housing additional.)

Space is limited. Advanced registration is important, and must be made, along with full payment, no later than June 1, 2011. We expect a full house and highly recommend you make your program and hotel reservations as early as possible. (See Cancellation Policy below.)


Advanced registration for both programs must be made, along with full payment, by June 1, 2011. You may register and pay on line with a credit card or mail a check payable to Bodhi Path along with this printable registration form to:

Please reserve early to help our planning.


Prior to June 15, 2011 your total program fee, minus a $40 per person registration fee, will be refunded upon cancellation. After June 15, no refunds will be made.

For those sharing the nearby house (see above) no refunds will be made after June 1.


Call: 540-464-5117,

Bodhi Path Buddhist Center,
12 Bodhi Path, Natural Bridge, VA 24578.