We are happy to announce this course in Rangdrolling Amsterdam with instructions on the practice of Dzogchen, and overcoming obstacles and distracting states that arise during the practice of contemplation.
There are a few updates!
The course will start on Wednesday evening August 24th, 2022, 19:00, with an open lecture introducing Dzogchen and the course; and continue till Sunday August 28th. For the time schedule see below.
Suggested donations are listed below. If you only attend the Wednesday evening you can donate any amount you feel is appropriate. Thank you!
In the course Elías Capriles will present his book: The Source of Danger is Fear: Paradoxes from the realm of delusion and instructions on the practice of the Dzogchen Upadeshavarga.
The book was written after a retreat period of Dzogchen Practice based on the instructions given mainly by Dungse Thinle Norbu Rinpoche and later also by H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche.
In this book Elías gives advice on how, through the practice of Dzogchen contemplation, we can release the knots in which we tie ourselves, states in which relaxation and presence are hindered.
Update: We re-printed the book. Elías has updated it and it has been prepared for printing. The books have arrived and they are beautiful! You can buy it during the course and we will also send it to your address in Europe. Note that following at least one of the courses is required for buying the book.
We will practice Semdzins and Rushens together during the course.
At the bottom of this page, you can find much more information about the book, and an extended biography of Elías Capriles.
This course is meant for people who have received Dzogchen Transmission from a qualified Dzogchen teacher, or who have a serious intention to receive Dzogchen Transmission from one.
You can attend the course live or via zoom.
This course is presented in collaboration with Dargyäling Cologne, who will host a companion course from August 18th till August 21th, 2022. Please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive information on the course in Cologne.
Dates and Times (small changes in the time schedule are possible, they will be updated here) Times are in Central European Summer Time, UTC+2:00 (Amsterdam, Paris, Rome). Wednesday evening August 24 2022, 19:00 till 20:30 with space for questions afterwards, Update: The Wednesday evening session will be an open lecture introducing Dzogchen and this course, for the general public. Thursday August 25 till Sunday August 28 2022, 10:30-12:30 and 15:00 till 17:00.
The course will also be broadcast via zoom. Please register to receive the link.
ContributionFees (note: these are suggested donations, see below)
If you only attend the Wednesday evening, you can donate any amount you find appropriate. The below amounts are for the whole course.
Non-member of the International Dzogchen Community: 150€ Meritorious member of the International Dzogchen Community: 50€ Sustaining member of the International Dzogchen Community: 90€ Ordinary member of the International Dzogchen Community: 120€
Price for 1 day
Price for 2 days
Note, the above contributions are recommended donations. If you can, you are encouraged to donate more. Donating for teaching is a very meritorious action. However if you cannot afford these amounts due to financial limitations or difficulties, a discount is always possible. Please contact us and we will look at this together with you.
Payment Bank details: IBAN: NL72 INGB 0006 0658 80 BIC: INGBNL2A In name of: Int. Dzogchen Community of Rangdrolling With mention: Elías Capriles Course 2022
Elías Capriles is a Santi Maha Sangha Teacher appointed by Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, whom he met in 1978 in Boudhanath. He practiced Dzogchen in successive strict 3 months retreats on the Himalayas between 1977 and the end of 1982, after receiving Trekchö (Khregs chod) instructions from H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche and Dungse Thinle Norbu Rinpoche. He also received teachings and transmissions from H.H. Dilgo Khyentse, Dodrub Chen Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche and Pema Norbu Rinpoche. As a whole, he has had twenty books published, as well as five Internet books, over forty academic papers and twelve book chapters, dealing with Dzogchen and Tibetan Buddhism; transpersonal psychology; ontology; philosophy of history; aesthetics; political philosophy; epistemology; sociology; axiology, etc. Various of these are on Buddhism and Dzogchen (including a poetry work) and Buddhist philosophy (it is relevant to mention an as yet unachieved work called Buddhism and Dzogchen — Vol. I: Buddhism that is freely available on the Web). He is retired from the Chair of Eastern Studies and the Center for Studies on Africa and Asia the University of The Andes, Mérida, Venezuela, where he taught Philosophy, Buddhism, Asian Religions, Globalization and Asian Aesthetics and Arts. He has offered conferences in many Universities across the Americas, Europe and Asia, and has also led workshops and courses in many countries. He managed “spiritual emergency refuges” where “psychotics” would go through the natural self-healing process in which they unwillingly embarked, and has been an ecological activist. He is a member of the Board of the International Transpersonal Association; among his works on this subject, most recent and best known is the four-volume work The Beyond Mind Papers: Transpersonal and Metatranspersonal Theory (Blue Dolphin, Nevada City, CA, 2013). His most recent book is Chamanismo y Dzogchen (Barcelona, La Llave, 2019).
Extensive Information About the Book
THE SOURCE OF DANGER IS FEAR Paradoxes of the Realm of Delusion and Instructions for the Practice of the Dzogchen Upadesha
The book starts with an extensive 40-page introduction, treating subjects central to the Dzogchen Teachings. Then it continues to describe knots and give instructions on Time, Pleasure and Pain, Boredom, Desire, ‘Fear, Insecurity, Suffering and Refuge’, Tension, Contemplation and Uptight Mindfulness, Meaning, Purification, etc. (For a full list, see the table of contents below.)
Here are some comments by Elías on the origin and contents of the book and how it was approved by Rinpoche, a text from the cover of the book that gives more background, and the complete table of contents.
Elías about the book:
This is a book that describes the knots in which we tie ourselves up, creating tensions, anguish and suffering—yet it also shows how the knot may untie itself if we perform a simple action, comparable to pulling the end thread of a lace. In fact, it describes the knots in which I tied myself and the instructions that came to my mind when I was practicing in intense retreats in the Yölmo area in Nepal and up the mountain from there.
When I lost that book, I asked a girl who is British and who had a copy to send it to me. I was surprised when I received it from the hands of ChNN. I used the auspicious coincidence to ask him whether he had found any errors in what he read, and he said “NO”. Then I asked him for permission to publish it through the publishers of the DzC in Spanish, which at the time was “Editorial Reflejos”, and he said “yes”. But then when I began to distribute it, ChNN wrote to me saying I could not distribute it that way, and that I could only give it to those who have previously received that teaching from me.
(If you have attended a course about the book, you can e-mail email@example.com to order it. We currently only send the book to addresses in Europe, but write anyway so we can keep you informed about future possibilities.)
From the cover:
Elias Capriles studied Dzogchen with some of the greatest lamas of the twentieth century and, after receiving specific Trekchod instructions from Khyabjés Thinley Norbu and Dudjom Yeshe Dorje, did repeated three-months Nyingthik retreats in hermitages and caves in the higher Himalayan range. In 1978 he attended the teachings of Chögyal Namkhai Norbu in Boudhanath and forged a relationship with the Master, who on Elias’ invitation visited Venezuela in 1986 and founded the Dzogchen Community there.
Elías received nearly all available Buddhist Dzogchen transmissions from some of the top Masters of the last century, including Kyabjés Dudjom Yeshe Dorje, Dilgo Khyentse, Dodrub Chen, Chatral Sangye Dorje and Padma Norbu, as well as Dzogchen teachings from the first three of the above Masters and personal help from Chatral Sangye Dorje.
During his intensive Trekchod practice in his repeated three-months retreats, in his practice Elías met different apparent knots whereby saṃsāra and the ensuing suffering maintain themselves. This book describes those knots—which it calls “laces˝ because they can be undone by means of a most simple action—followed by the instructions that came to Elías’ mind for resolving them, and with the help of which they spontaneously resolved themselves.
INTRODUCTION 7 History of the Book 9 Structure of the Dzogchen Path 10 The Base, its Three Aspects and the Three Modes of Manifestation of Energy 13 The Kāyas as Stages of the Path 24 The Energy Volume Determining the Scope of Awareness 29 Inner Ngöndro, Rushen and Chod 35 Three Types of Avidyā and Three Types of Thought 40 Structure of the Book as it Stands Now 48 The Title of This Book 51 Words in Parentheses 52 Acknowledgements 53
TIME 55 PLEASURE AND PAIN 59 BOREDOM 61 DESIRE 63 FEAR, INSECURITY, SUFFERING AND REFUGE 65 TENSION 75 SELF-IMPORTANCE 84 BLAMING OTHERS 86 HATRED 89 CONTEMPLATION AND UPTIGHT MINDFULNESS 92 SELF-CONSCIOUSNESS 97 DELUSION, DISTRESS AND HERE-NOWNESS 101 LACKING 104 OTHERS, PRIDE AND VALUE 106 FAVORABLE CONDITIONS 109 WORRYING FOR OTHERS 112 ILLNESS AND PAIN 114 Dealing with Pain 116 Contemplation and Illness 118 GOOD AND EVIL 120 MEANING 128 MORALIST TEACHINGS AND RELATIVE PRACTICES 130 ABHOR THE PASSIONS? 135 PURIFICATION 139 OPENING UP 141 UNEASINESS IN MEDITATION 144 BOREDOM IN MEDITATION 149 TOO MANY PASSIONS AND DELUSIONS IN CONTEMPLATION 151 PROFOUND INSTRUCTIONS 153 PEACEFUL MANDALAS 155 WRATHFUL MANDALAS 157 CONCLUSION 161
APPENDIX 163 SOCIAL LACES 163 ECOLOGY AND SURVIVAL 165 SOCIAL CHANGE 167
September 11 till 16, 2021 with SMS Instructor Elías Capriles
Including September 11, 19:00 CEST Public Talk: The Three Phrases of Guru Garab Dorje’s Testament
Both the retreat and public talk will be broadcasted via Zoom. Translation to Italian and Spanish is also possible if it is required. The public talk is open for everyone, while to follow the retreat you need to have Direct Introduction.
For a description of the contents of the retreat and a biography of the teacher, please see below.
Location: Rangdrolling (Nemoland, Overbrakerpad 2, 1014 AZ Amsterdam)
Price public talk: non-Members 10€ Price retreat Zoom Members: 20€ per day / 80€ for entire course Price retreat Zoom non Members: 25€ per day / 100€ for entire course Price retreat Onsite sustaining: 20€ per day / 80€ for entire course Price retreat Onsite ordinary: 30€ per day / 120€ for entire course
Payment Bank details: IBAN: NL72 INGB 0006 0658 80 BIC: INGBNL2A In name of: Int. Dzogchen Community of Rangdrolling with mention Retreat or Public talk
Guru Garab Dorje was the Master who introduced Buddhist Dzogchen to our human world. In this lecture, Elías will explain the deep meaning of the three phrases of the testament of Guru Garab Dorje: (1) Direct Introduction; (2) to obtain a decisive certainty; (3) to continue in the state of rigpa.
(1) Direct Introduction means having an initial glimpse of rigpa, which is the nonconceptual, nondual Knowledge (of) the true condition of reality, in a state of instant, immediate, nondual Presence. (2) “To obtain a decisive certainty.” According to Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, this phrase has been inaccurately translated as “to decide upon this single point.” This is a mistranslation because when one decides, it is the conceptual, dualistic mind that decides, and thus this decision is delusive. So Rinpoche translates it as “Not to remain in doubt” (as to the fact that one had a glimpse of rigpa and that rigpa is the knowledge of the true condition of all reality)—because rigpa cannot be remembered reflexively, as ordinary, conceptual, dualistic memories are remembered. Paltrul Rinpoche noted that it also imperative “to gain confidence on self-liberation,” for we need to be certain that, when we look at a thought after Direct Introduction, it will self-liberate. (3) The last phrase refers to the main practice of Dzogchen, which consists in continuing in the state of rigpa to which one was Introduced.
Therefore, the three phrases of Garab Dorje’s testament are the summary of the whole practice of Dzogchen.
11th-16th September Retreat onSemdzins, Secret Rushens and Contemplation With the Emphasis on Kadag
This retreat will be focused mainly on practicing Semdzins, Secret Rushens and Contemplation with the emphasis on kadag. With the Semdzins and Secret Rushens we have a possibility of discovering rigpa, or returning to the state of rigpa if we have already had glimpses of it. That practice should help us be certain about our own discovery of rigpa and the fact that this condition is the true condition of ourselves and all reality (i.e., it will serve for “Not remaining in doubt,” which is how Chögyal Namkhai Norbu glossed the second phrase of Guru Garab Dorje’s testament). At the same time, the best way to become familiar with the self-liberation of thought in Dzogchen Katak Contemplation and to develop confidence on it (which is how Paltrul Rinpoche glossed the second phrase of Guru Garab dorje’s testament), is by nakedly and barely looking at the stuff and essence of the thoughts that arise immediately after having had a glimpse of rigpa. Once, (through the practices of Semdzin, Rushen, the Seventh Lojong, Khorwa Yedal and other introductory practices), we have given ourselves direct introduction, we have gone beyond doubt and we have developed confidence that thoughts liberate spontaneously upon looking at their stuff and essence, (barely and nakedly), then we can receive teachings on Trekchod to continue in the state of rigpa without deviating into samsara. And when we have developed enough confidence in spontaneous liberation in intense situations, we can then receive Thögal instructions and devote ourselves to that practice. Finally, there will be advice to the sangha, including an explanation of the principles of Contemplation with the emphasis on lhundrub.
Elías Capriles is a Santi Maha Sangha Teacher appointed by Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, whom he met in 1978 in Boudhanath. He practiced Dzogchen in successive strict 3 months retreats on the Himalayas between 1977 and the end of 1982, after receiving Trekchö (Khregs chod) instructions from H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche and Dungse Thinle Norbu Rinpoche. He also received teachings and transmissions from H.H. Dilgo Khyentse, Dodrub Chen Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche and Pema Norbu Rinpoche. As a whole, he has had twenty books published, as well as five Internet books, over forty academic papers and twelve book chapters, dealing with Dzogchen and Tibetan Buddhism; transpersonal psychology; ontology; philosophy of history; aesthetics; political philosophy; epistemology; sociology; axiology, etc. Various of these are on Buddhism and Dzogchen (including a poetry work) and Buddhist philosophy (it is relevant to mention an as yet unachieved work called Buddhism and Dzogchen — Vol. I: Buddhism that is freely available on the Web). He is retired from the Chair of Eastern Studies and the Center for Studies on Africa and Asia the University of The Andes, Mérida, Venezuela, where he taught Philosophy, Buddhism, Asian Religions, Globalization and Asian Aesthetics and Arts. He has offered conferences in many Universities across the Americas, Europe and Asia, and has also led workshops and courses in many countries. He managed “spiritual emergency refuges” where “psychotics” would go through the natural self-healing process in which they unwillingly embarked, and has been an ecological activist. He is a member of the Board of the International Transpersonal Association; among shis
works on this subject, most recent and best known is the four-volume work The Beyond Mind Papers: Transpersonal and Metatranspersonal Theory (Blue Dolphin, Nevada City, CA, 2013). His most recent book is Chamanismo y Dzogchen (Barcelona, La Llave, 2019).
Next July and August we will try out running Yantra Yoga classes at a yoga studio in the very city center, hidden in one of the oldest and most historic alleyways of Amsterdam.
The space is large and shoe-free, which is ideal for breathing. There is shower available, all the props, tea.
The classes will take place on Sunday at 16:00 till 17:30.
-Dzogchen community members EUR 5,-
-non-members EUR 9,-
Yantra Yoga classes are open for people of any skills level and age.
Master Namkhai Norbu Receives the Honor of Commander of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic.
On 10 September 2018, in the Arcidosso Town Hall, the Prefect of Grosseto, Cinzia Teresa Torraco, conferred the honor of ‘Commander of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic’ on Prof. Namkhai Norbu, for having dedicated his life to activities that have brought benefits to the community and the nation.
In thanking Master Namkhai Norbu, who inspires an exemplary model of life and represents for all a living testimony of the highest human values, both ethical and cultural, the Prefect recalled the importance of honoring charismatic figures such as his, capable of inspiring virtuous actions and behavior with the strength of their example and with the values of an authentic testimony expressed by life choices fully coherent with the thoughts of a noble and elevated nature.
During the ceremony the Prefect underlined the fact that in view of the very high profile of his personality, the Presidency of the Council of Ministers had decided to directly confer recognition of the honorary title ‘Commander’, the highest honorary award of the Italian Republic.
The ceremony was attended by the Mayor of Arcidosso, Jacopo Marini, and the President of the Regional Council, Eugenio Giani, in addition to the territorial authorities, the Mayor of Castel del Piano, Claudio Franci, the Mayor of Santa Fiora, Federico Balocchi, and the Prefect, Marco Valentini, director of the legislative affairs office and parliamentary reports of the Ministry of the Interior.
Prefect Cinzia Torraco, expressing her confidence that Master Namkhai Norbu’s message of peace and brotherhood would be auspicious for different and better future prospects with the hope of continuing his teaching activity, conferred on Master Namkhai Norbu the honor:
The President of the Republic
in consideration of particular merits on the proposal of the President of the Council of Ministers, after hearing the Council of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic on 2 June 2018, confers the honor of Commander on Master Norbu Namkhai with the right to wear the related insignia.
At the end of the ceremony the Mayor of Arcidosso presented a banner to the Master to recall the importance of the Community of Merigar for the territory, while the President of the Council of Tuscany presented a second banner from the Amiata Municipalities. and reaffirmed the value of the honor of Commander from the President of the Republic in recognizing the spiritual and human values that Master Namkhai Norbu has brought to Amiata, recalling the strong spiritual energy of the territory.
August 31, September 1&2 in Amsterdam with StoffelinaVerdonk
Rangdrolling Amsterdam is exited to announce the next Vajra Dance of The Song of the Vajra weekend in our series, specially suitable for refreshing and learning this Dance. It is the third weekend and we are starting the second half of the Dance. We will repeat what we have learned before and start from Sambharatha on.
A special element of this course is its focus on learning the correct rhythm and way of singing of the Song of the Vajra. Those who are not learning the Dance now, are welcome to join and learn!
About this course Stoffelina writes:
In this course the new Pamo are learning the steps, while the Pawo or others who are present, sing the natural sound of the Song of the Vajra. They can experience how to be present in the correct timing with the syllables and melody, while they sing. Then the new Pawo start learning the steps and the Pamo sing etc.
All sounds of The Song of the Vajra present a source for contemplation. We learn how to sing perfect way in timing, offering our presence, dancers and singers, relaxing in contemplation All together.
It is a perfect practice, also a Semdzin, in which we can discover how this singing and dancing is influencing our dance, our own dance, but also the dance in harmony of Pamo and Pawo present on the mandala.
Knowing the precise timing and way of singing is presented since long time by Rinpoche, also by Adriano Clemente. In Vajra Dance, especially for those who know longer the dance, timing is important. This is a very joyful way to dance AND sing together.
All Be most welcome!!!
About StoffelinaVerdonk Stoffelina is a certified performer and teacher of modern dance. She met Chögyal Namkhai Norbu in 1986. Since then she practices his teaching and collaborates within the Dzogchen Community. She became a second level Vajra Dance instructor in 1993, travelling to teach and practice Vajra Dance in and outside the International Dzogchen Community; and she is a very inspiring and experienced Vajra Dance teacher. In 2015 she was authorised as Santi Maha Sangha and Khaita instructor by Chögyal Namkhai Norbu.
For a fuller biography see: http://vajradance.net/stoffelina–verdonk/
For all interested to practicing Dzogchen Teaching we organize an explanation session of the coming World Wide Transmission from an eminent Dzogchen Master Chögyal Namkhai Norbu.
The starting point for the practice of Dzogchen is to receive a ‘Direct Transmission’ from the teacher. This ‘Direct Transmission’ is the means by which the teacher introduces us directly to the true nature of our mind: our primordial state or ‘rigpa’ (in Tibetan). On three occasions each year, corresponding to particular anniversaries in the Dzogchen calendar, Chögyal Namkhai Norbu gives the direct transmission of Guru Yoga necessary for starting to practice. The World Wide Transmissions are broadcast as live webcasts, this time it will be on the 22nd, July at 5:00.
In order to be ready for the Transmission we are giving explanations for newcomers, what is it and what should one expect, a week before, on the 15th of July at 14:00 at Rangdrolling.
Newcomers who want to participate at a World Wide Transmission (WWT) should be interested in the Dzogchen Teachings.
Please come if you are. You don’t need to bring anything.
This retreat will primarily focus on the practise of Chöd. We will practise the melodies, the use of the ritual instruments and do a word by word explanation of the textual material according to Chogyal Namkhai Norbu’s arrangement of the practise. During the course there will also be explanations of some of the principle points regarding view, meditation, and conduct.
Location: Rangdrolling (Overbrakerpad 2, 1014 AZ Amsterdam) Registration via email: firstname.lastname@example.org IBAN: NL72INGB0006065880 with mention Chod Retreat Price: sustaining € 100.- ; ordinary € 140.- Early bird price: sustaining € 70.- ; ordinary € 120.- (before June, 30th)
Fri, 27 19:00-21:00
Introduction Session Sat, 28 10:00-12:00 and 15:00-17:00 Sun, 29 10:00-12:00 and 15:00-17:00 Mon, 30 10:00-12:00 and 15:00-17:00 Tue, 31 10:00-12:00 and 15:00-17:00
Steven Landsberg began studying Tibetan Buddhism in 1967 whilst he was living in India. He also spent two years studying Sanskrit and Tibetan and many years doing preliminary practices.
In 1982, he attended his first retreat with Chogyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche and began practising under his guidance. After having studied and practised the Base Level, he passed the exam in 1996. He has continued to pursue his study and practise of SMS since that time and was authorized by Chogyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche to teach in August 2010. Since then, he has been giving courses on various aspects of the SMS base level as well as public courses on mindfulness and the application of presence and how these skills can be generally useful.
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