Home for a rare lineage of Tibetan BuddhismFamily environments in which kindness, openness and an enthusiasm for life are exemplified, are needed for there to be peace and harmony in the world. For these qualities to exist as examples for children, men and women need greater respect & appreciation for each other. The Aro gTér provides insight and methodology which are directly applicable to this need. — Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen
A lineage uniquely suited to the WestThe Aro gTér Lineage of the Nyingma Tradition is uniquely suited to the West, as it emphasises integration with the secular world. It cultivates gender equality founded on active appreciation – and teaches romantic relationship as one of the most essential practices. Both ordained and non-ordained practitioners engage with society, pursue careers, and enjoy family life. Emphasis is placed on the Arts, as creativity that extends into the broader spectrum of human endeavours – including environmental, sartorial, and culinary Art. In this, every human being is an Artist in the most profound sense.
Living in mainstream societyBuddhism, as commonly encountered, is monastically based – and thus not naturally aligned to contemporary culture. There is a growing need therefore, to establish a venue for receiving instruction that supports living within mainstream society. To this end, the Aro gTér lineage draws on the history of the 84 Tantric Adepts: amongst whom was an entrepreneur, merchant, farmer, cattle drover, fisherman, weaver, restaurateur, raconteur, launderer, dancer, poet, musician, athlete, refuse collector, king, and soldier; people from every walk of society – and each one achieved the highest accomplishment.
Establishing a retreat centreThe need to provide a facility where people can obtain inspiration without removing themselves from everyday society is clear. We are therefore looking to establish a retreat centre in Wales, where people can study with teachers – most of whom are married couples with children. Individuals will then be able to practise what they have assimilated – and return to their lives refreshed and invigorated. Open Teaching Retreats at Drala Jong will include guidance in systems of meditation, yogic song and music, physical yogas, romantic relationship – and, in the spiritual dimension of dance, art, and craft.
The vision of Kyabjé Düd’jom RinpocheThis will be the fulfilment of the vision of Kyabjé Düd’jom Rinpoche, the most remarkable Tibetan Lama of the 20th Century and Head of the Nyingma Buddhist Tradition, who gave instruction for the establishment of our organisation in 1977.
The name ‘Drala Jong’The name ‘Drala Jong’, means ‘Sparkling Meadow of Primal Iridescence’. Of this name, Spiritual Directors Ngak’chang Rinpoche and Khandro Déchen write:
Drala Jong innately exists in human beings. ‘Drala’ is the appreciative faculty which exponentially enlivens people the more they engage with the world. Appreciation is the key to enjoyment and to the delighting in the enjoyment of others. When we learn to appreciate phenomena our sense fields ‘Jong’ begin to sparkle and a sense of generosity is born which connects us with others. Although Vajrayana Buddhism is by no means unknown in the West – the sense in which enjoyment and compassion are mutually interdependent remains unexpressed. We would like Drala Jong to be a place where human beings could discover the pleasure of existence – the pleasure that animates the sense fields and revitalises the Arts – and the art of living.
Drala Jong facilitiesAs a venue Drala Jong will be used for:
- Talks, courses, and retreats – from single evenings to week long residential events
- Public teachings—irrespective of affiliation with Buddhism—on: healthy happy personal relationships; embracing emotions through meditation; Tibetan physical yogas; iconographic painting; and the Arts – including woodcraft, metal work, ceramics, dance, and music.
- Private teachings for qualified teachers and their personal students.
- House a library of books, audio-visual teaching recordings, texts, art, and photography pertaining to non-monastic Buddhist practice – and, to provide a venue for study by practitioners and academics, adults and children.
- Found a teacher training centre for the next generation ngak’phang teachers, as well as shorter courses on counselling and therapy influenced by Buddhist psychology.
- Establish a residential care centre for ageing practitioners to grow old in dignity and company – whilst providing opportunities to learn from their experience and insight.