More than 160 students joined Tsoknyi Rinpoche and stalwart translator Gerardo Abboud for the 16th annual Pundarika UK retreat, held again at Bruton School for Girls.

Rinpoche did not teach from a specific dharma text this year but spoke on the theme Dreamlike Enlightenment – Understanding Illusion from a Dzogchen Perspective
It’s a theme summed up by Rinpoche’s favourite and oft-repeated quotation from the Buddha: “My dreamlike form appeared to dreamlike beings to show them the dreamlike path to dreamlike enlightenment.”
The event was embellished by an overtone chanting recital by musician David Hykes

David Hykes’ recital

Tsoknyi Rinpoche demonstrates shamatha meditation.

and included a video presentation on Tsoknyi Gechak School and a recorded message from school director Fionnuala Shenpen.
Half a dozen students  took the opportunity to take refuge with Rinpoche and, at the end of the retreat,  there was a traditional ceremony requesting the teacher to remain as
the vajra body, speech and mind.
Even the English weather – described by Rinpoche as “spontaneous and unpredictable” – failed to dampen the retreatants’ spirits.
Translator Gerardo was this year sporting a beard following his month-long personal retreat in Cordoba, Argentina.
And it was the first outing for Pundarika UK’s new Buddha statue, bought from Nepal.
Carole Bishop, Pundarika UK director, said: “We are delighted to have had another wonderful retreat with Rinpoche and look forward to him joining us at Bruton again next Easter.
“I’d like to thank all the helpers from Pundarika UK and the staff from Bruton School for Girls for once more helping to ensure the smooth and successful running of the retreat.”
Audio recordings of the teachings will be made available shortly via this website, but only to those who attended the retreat.

 

 

Gloomy weather at Bruton.

Cloudy skies, clear minds? The spontaneous and unpredictable weather failed to dampen spirits.