Session #9 Friday September 4th

Dear NyingmaNet Friends,

On August 21 we started a new series of seven NyingmaNet sessions, running through November 13, 2020. These will occur every two weeks from now on, not once a week. During  the August 21 session, we heard about the fire dangers in Sonoma County and about Jack Petranker’s upcoming TSK Intensive. Jack also led a TSK practice. Morgan Wells demonstrated the new Nyingma Mandala website and Abbe Blum interviewed Bea Fleck about the Nyingma Group in Porto Alegre, Brasil, which is in the process of becoming an authorized center. We concluded with the Vajra Armour chant led by Claudio Moraes. 

Please join us again for NyingmaNet #9 on Friday, September 4. 

8.00-8.45am in California 12.00-12.45pm in Brazil
5.00-5.45pm in Europe 8.30-9.15pm in India 

Please also invite friends, family or neighbors new to Nyingma to join NyingmaNet. We would love to see the community of people that benefit from these timeless wisdom teachings grow! New participants should register by sending NyingmaNet their email  For security reasons please do not share the zoom link directly. Thank you.

This is what we expect to present in NyingmaNet #9, September 4:  

  • Elske van de Hulst interviews Helena Gold about the new courses based on Tarthang Tulku’s most recent book Caring.
  • Leigh Deering will lead us through a Caring exercise. 
  • Jack Petranker interviews Wangmo Dixey about the situation in India during the pandemic and the plans of Light of Buddhadharma Foundation in the next year.
  • SHORT NEWS from all corners of the worldwide Nyingma Mandala. You are welcome to send us proposals for items to mention.
  • Ignacio Ercole leads the Vajra Guru Mantra chant.

We hope to see you all September 4. 

We will be using this zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81076063805

Welcome!

NyingmaNet editorial team
Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King

New series NyingmaNet sessions starting August 21

NyingmaNet Returns! 

We are very happy to announce a new series of seven NyingmaNet sessions starting August 21. The new series will run through November 13, 2020 – not once a week but once every two weeks. 

You may want to mark the dates: 

August 21 • NyingmaNet # 8

September 4 • NyingmaNet # 9

September 18 • NyingmaNet # 0

October 2 • NyingmaNet # 11 

October 16 • NyingmaNet # 12

October 30 • NyingmaNet # 13

November 13 • NyingmaNet # 14

NyingmaNet continues to be a free offering for friends of Nyingma worldwide. However, if you can afford it, we would very much appreciate a donation that will help us pay for our Zoom subscription and for digital services that are being used to support the new Nyingma Mandala website where the NyingmaNet blog is now located. Donors will have access to recordings that we plan to make for archival and communication purposes. 

Support us here

As before, NyingmaNet will be offering news items, practices, interviews, discussions and announcements from within the world wide mandala of Tarthang Rinpoche’s Nyingma organizations and projects. Please also invite friends, family or neighbors new to Nyingma to join NyingmaNet. We would love to see the community of people that benefit from these timeless wisdom teachings grow! 

New participants should register by sending in their email here. For security reasons please do not share the zoom link directly. 

We welcome all of you to our re-opening session NyingmaNet #8 on Friday, August 21. We will be using this zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81076063805

Timing will be the same as before: 

8.00-8.45 am in California, 
12.00-12.45pm in Brazil, 
5.00-5.45pm in Europe, 
8.30-9.15pm in India. 

This is what we expect to present: 

  • Elske van de Hulst interviews Jack Petranker about the relevance TSK in these turbulent times, announcing an international TSK webinar retreat September 5-8 
  • Jack leads a TSK practice 
  • Ignacio Ercole will interview Morgan Wells about the new website, NyingmaMandala.org 
  • Abbe Blum interviews Bea Fleck about the newly authorized Porto Alegre Nyingma center 
  • Short news from all corners of the worldwide Nyingma Mandala. You are invited to send us proposed items to mention. 
  • Claudio Moraes leads us through a Vajra Armour Mantra chant, inviting you to also join the daily chants from Rio if you wish. 

We hope to see you all August 21 and please help us spread the word! 

NyingmaNet editorial team 

Jack Petranker 
Abbe Blum 
Elske van de Hulst 
Ignacio Ercole 
Wei-Li King

NyingmaNet will be back on August 21 meanwhile in June:

Dear NyingmaNet friends,

In NyingmaNet session #7 on May 29 we honoured Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche and our Nyingma lineage with a talk by Jack Petranker on lineage, a film of the most recent Planting Seeds of Healing trip to the Amazon and a reading in English of a longevity prayer composed by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche for Tarthang Tulku. The session concluded with Lama Palzang and Pema Gellek leading us through an invocation of Padmasambhava and a beautiful long life prayer composed by Chatral Rinpoche for Rinpoche.

We thank Rinpoche for bringing us into touch with the wisdom of his lineage, and we thank everyone who has been participating and presenting in these first seven sessions of NyingmaNet. We feel that the NyingmaNet medium could continue to be supportive in strengthening cooperation and communication within our Nyingma international mandala. 

We propose to start a next series of sessions—maybe not weekly but biweekly or monthly beginning in August. We will be reflecting on how best to proceed and invite all of you to let us know your thoughts and ideas. Please join us again Friday, August 21. We will be sending a new link. 

June 5 will be a very special Saga Dawa Full Moon Buddha’s Enlightenment celebration: you can join online mantra chants in Amsterdam, Cologne, Rio de Janeiro and Berkeley. You are also warmly invited to sponsor prayers in the Buddha’s Enlightenment Prayer Walk organised at the Odiyan Enlightenment Stupa by Nyingma Trust. 

We thought you might also be interested in a program June 7,14 and 21 called Quotes Conversations based on the international Tarthang Tulku Quotes Project. You can find more information and the zoomlink to attend here.

Quotes Conversations hosted by Barry Schieber
Sunday June 7, 2020 10:00 am Pacific Time Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89713038037?pwd=SDBLRmZWV3UwUmJVSi80TWZRVkpUQT09 Meeting ID: 897 1303 8037
Password: 112387

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts and suggestions,

NyingmaNet editorial team
Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King

Session #7 Friday May 29

The sixth NyingmaNet session featured Ralph McFall interviewed by Abbe about the history and plans for Dharma Publishing and DP Academy. Andis Egle led us through an invigorating Kum Nye Dancing practice: Leaving the Corral You Have Created for Yourself, and Elske interviewed Hugh Joswick, managing editor of Gesar, the Nyingma Mandala magazine. (You can subscribe here). Claudio Mendes Moraes from the Nyingma Center in Rio de Janeiro led the protective Vajra Armor Mantra chant. 

Next session, NyingmaNet #7, coming up Friday May 29, will be the last session before summer break. Here is the tentative program #7:

  • Jack Petranker on lineage
  • A short film on the Planting Seeds of Healing Project that happened recently in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, followed by an interview with Rita Toledo on the project.
  • Future of NyingmaNet, after a break until August 7
  • Reading of a Longevity Prayer for Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche written by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
  • Lama Palzang leads an Invocation of Padmasambhava and a longevity chant for Rinpoche 

Since we are thinking about how to maybe continue NyingmaNet after a summer break we warmly invite you to send us your comments, tips and feedback. And please join us for NyingmaNet #7 Friday May 29: 8.00-8.45am in California, 12.00-12.45am in Brazil, 5.00-5.45pm in Europe, 8.30-9.15pm in India.  

Feel free to pass along this message to friends and neighbors. For security reasons, please ask them to join by signing up here, rather than giving them the zoom link. Thank you!

Together our Nyingma organizations offer a very rich array of online courses, retreats and workshops that will sustain your practice in difficult times. Check out the links and a helpful calendar overview on our website. 

Looking forward to welcoming you back May 29.

NyingmaNet editorial team

Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King

How Gesar Wins the Throne

Gesar’s heart is cool and pulsing like a highland spring, and he holds tightly to Kyang-Go-Karkar’s reins. He does not move. Even as the dust cloud far ahead rises higher and higher and all that can be seen of the racing horses are the sparks from their hooves, even as his heart beats, he feels a calm detachment as if he were an eagle watching from the sky. And the sight for all these brave men and noble steeds striving their utmost in the midday sun fills him with profound joy.

Extract from How Gesar Wins the Throne from the last issue; if you want to subscribe to Gesar go to: https://nyingmamandala.org/gesar-magazine/

Please find below the table of contents. The table of contents and the cover also are found on the website.

Mandala Principles

The Mandala represents a realm where all elements are in balance, bringing a deep sense of peace and beauty to our world. It conveys an external structure that can also be reflected internally, in our minds. In this way, it shows a macrocosm and microcosm, at one and the same time a universe in perfect harmony and our minds in perfect balance. 

Structures of the Mandala 

An outer ring of five-colored flames represents the five types of wisdom. It shows that we are entering a sacred realm as we proceed into the mandala. 

Next is a ring of vajras, which represent spiritual power and protection. 

A ring of multicolored lotus petals comes next, signifying the purity of the realm. A lotus grows in a muddy place in stagnant water, but emerges untouched and pure. 

The inner parts of the mandala show a palace seen from above, as an architect would draw it. The basic structure of the palace is laid out on top of two crossed vajras that form a double vajra (Sanskrit) or double dorje (Tibetan), that symbolize balance. 

All that is seen of the vajras is their outer curves and tips, which form the gateways into the palace. Often two deer with a wheel between them are placed on top of the gateways, symbolizing the teaching of the Buddha. The Buddha gave his first teachings in Deer Park in Sarnath, India and it was said that even the deer came to listen to him teach. An umbrella above them symbolizes protection from the heat of desire. 

Next comes the five walls of the palace, each a different color. Within the walls, the inner courtyard is divided into four different quadrants in four colors. These represent the four cardinal directions, starting at the bottom with east (white), and going clockwise to find south (yellow), west (red), and north (green). The fifth direction in the Tibetan system is the center (blue). The zenith is the highpoint above the mandala, the nadir is at the depth below. 

In the center of the mandala is a circular lotus throne on which the central deity will reside. Sometimes a symbol such as a vajra will replace the deity it represents, in this case Buddha Akshobhya, who holds a vajra. Often there will be other deities placed on top of the lotus petals, representing a retinue of the associated deities. 

The Five Directions 

The five directions and the five colors associated with them provide a guide to the basic concepts of Tibetan art. Each direction has not only a color and element associated with it, but also a negative emotions a type of wisdom that can counteract that emotion, a Dhyani (Meditation) Buddha, a symbol, and a Bodhisattva. 

EAST: Starting at the bottom in the east is how we symbolically enter the mandala. The color is white; the element is water; the negative emotion is anger; the wisdom that counteracts anger is “Mirror-like Transcendent Wisdom’” the Buddha is Vairocana; the symbol he holds is the wheel; the Bodhisattva is Akashagarbha. 

SOUTH: To the left is south. The color is yellow; the element is earth; the negative emotion is pride; the wisdom to counteract that is the “Transcendent Wisdom of Equanimity;” the Buddha is Ratnasambhava; his symbol is a jewel; the Bodhisattva is Kshitigarbha. 

WEST: At the top of the mandala is west. The color is red; the element is fire; the negative emotion is greed; the wisdom to counteract it is “Transcendent Wisdom of Discrimination” that leads to compassion; the Buddha is Amitabha; the symbol is the lotus; the Bodhisattva is Avalokiteshvara. 

NORTH: To the right of the mandala is north. The color is green; the element is air; the negative emotion is envy; the wisdom to counteract it is the “Transcendent Wisdom of All-Accomplishing Action;” the Buddha is Amoghasiddhi; there are two symbols: the double vajra and the flaming sword; the Bodhisattva is Sarvanivarana Vishkhambhin. 

CENTER: In the center of the mandala the color is blue; the element is ether; the negative emotion is dullness or ignorance; the wisdom is the “Transcendent Wisdom of the Absolute Truth;” the Buddha is Akshobhya; the symbol is a vajra; the Bodhisattva is Vajrapani. 

ZENITH: Above the mandala is the zenith. The color is white like a radiant diamond from which all colors emanate; the wisdom is the “Five-fold Transcendent Wisdom;” the Buddha is the primordial or Adi Buddha Vajradhara; his symbols are the bell and vajra, shown crossed at his heart; the Bodhisattvas are Manjushri and Maitreya. 

NADIR: At the depth below the mandala is the nadir. The wisdom is also the “Five- fold Transcendent Wisdom;” the Buddha is the Adi Buddha,Vajrasattva; his symbols are the bell and vajra (the bell at his hip, the vajra at his heart); the Bodhisattva is Samantabhadra. 

Session #6 Friday May 22

Thank you for joining NyingmaNet. The fifth NyingmaNet session featured Nyingma veteran Judy Rasmussen on prayer flags, including the latest prayer flags printed for Covid-19 protection. Sylvia Lyra, Co-Dean of the Nyingma Center in São Paulo, Brazil, discussed the situation in Brazil, shared an inspiring quotation and compassion practice from Path of Heroes. Rosalyn White, Co-Director of Ratna Ling Retreat Center, interviewed by Ignacio Ercole,  shared her insights from a lifetime experience of working with Rinpoche on Tibetan Sacred Art and discussed the significance of the mandala principle. Ineke Smits from the Nyingma Center in Amsterdam led the Vajra Guru Mantra. 

Here is the tentative program for NyingmaNet #6, coming up Friday May 22. This will be the second to last session before summer break:

  • Interview with Ralph McFall, current director of Dharma Publishing.
  • Andis Egle from Dharma Publishing leads us through a Kum Nye Dancing practice.
  • Interview with Hugh Joswick on Gesar, the magazine of the Nyingma community.
  • Discussion of NyingmaNet as a model for future cooperation within the Nyingma mandala of organizations.
  • Claudio Mendes Moraes leads a Vajra Armour protective chant.  

We warmly invite you to  join us for this next NyingmaNet, Friday May 22: 8.00-8.45am in California, 12.00-12.45am in Brazil, 5.00-5.45pm in Europe, 8.30-9.15pm in India.  

After this session we will do one more session on May 29, and then adjourn for a summer break. NyingmaNet hopes to be back around the end of July. We’ll keep you posted. 

Please feel free to pass along this message to friends and neighbors. For security reasons, please ask them to join by signing up here, rather than giving them the zoom link. Thank you!

Together our Nyingma organizations offer a very rich array of online courses, retreats and workshops that will sustain your practice in difficult times. Check out the links and a helpful calendar overview on our website. 

Looking forward to welcoming you back May 22.

NyingmaNet editorial team

Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King

Session #5 Friday May 15

Happy to have had a great turn out for the 4th NyingmaNet session on May 8. The session featured voices from the next generation of community members, including interviews featuring Ignacio Ercole and Amira-Sade Moodie, participants in the Mindful Living Program, based at Mangalam Center, Berkeley and Charlotte van Leeuwen who initiated classes for young adults in the Amsterdam Nyingma Center. Adrian Roman, one of the organizers of the Mindful Living program led a practice based on Full Presence Mindfulness.

We are nearly complete with our first season of NyingmaNet and will decide in the next few weeks how to continue. What do you think? We appreciate hearing from you through the contact form. Thank you!

You’ll find the program below for the fifth NyingmaNet, coming up Friday May 15: 

  • Judy Rasmussen will report on the recently completed prayer flag silkscreening project done in the Padma Ling parking lot, complete with pictures.  
  • Abbe Blum interviews Sylvia Lyra, on the Executive Counsel of Centro Nyingma in São Paulo, on a passage in Rinpoche’s books that she has used in these difficult times.
  • Sylvia Lyra will also lead a practice.
  • Rosalyn White, co-director of Ratna Ling and a thanka painter for many years, describes how sacred art carries on the tradition of Nyingma wisdom teachings.
  • Ineke Smits, from the Dutch center, leads a brief Vajra Guru Mantra chant.   

We warmly invite you to  join us for this next NyingmaNet, Friday May 15: 
8.00-8.45 am in California, 12.00-12.45 am in Brazil, 5.00-5.45 pm in Europe, 8.30-9.15 pm in India.  

Please feel free to pass along  this message to friends and neighbors. For security reasons, please ask them to join by signing up here, rather than giving them the zoomlink. Thank you!

Together our Nyingma organizations offer a very rich array of online courses, retreats and workshops that will sustain your practice in difficult times. Check out the links and a helpful calendar overview on our website. 

Looking forward to welcoming you back May 15.

NyingmaNet editorial team

Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King

Session #4 Friday May 8

Thank you for having participated in the third NyingmaNet session. The session featured an interview about sheltering in place in Nyingma locations, a practice based on Caring,  led by Dagmar Traub from the center in Germany, and Dharma College teacher Robin Caton on the importance of understanding and befriending our minds in these challenging times. 

We are now halfway through our six initial NyingmaNet sessions and will decide in the next weeks if and how to continue. What do you think? We appreciate hearing from you through the contact form. Thank you!

Here is the tentative program for the fourth NyingmaNet, coming up Friday May 8: 

  • Morgan Wells interviews participants in the Mindful Living Program, based at Mangalam Center, Berkeley  
  • Adrian Roman, resident of Mangalam Center,  leads a Full Presence Mindfulness practice 
  • Jack Petranker interviews Charlotte van Leeuwen who initiated classes for young adults in the Amsterdam Nyingma Center
  • Mark Henderson, teacher of Tibetan language at the Berkeley Nyingma Institute, leads a brief Vajra Guru Mantra chant.    

We warmly invite you to  join us for this next NyingmaNet, Friday May 8:  8.00-8.45 am in California, 12.00-12.45 am in Brazil, 5.00-5.45 pm in Europe, 8.30-9.15 pm in India.  

Please feel free to pass along  this message to friends and neighbors. For security reasons, please ask them to join by signing up here, rather than giving them the zoomlink. Thank you!

Together our Nyingma organizations offer a very rich array of online courses, retreats and workshops that will sustain your practice in difficult times. Check out the links and a helpful calendar overview on our website. 

Looking forward to welcoming you back May 8.

NyingmaNet editorial team

Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King

Session #3 Friday May 1

Dear NyingmaNet friends

We hope you enjoyed our second NyingmaNet session, featuring an interview with Tsering Gellek, Olivia Hurd leading us through a Balancing Emotions practice, and Dr. Bob Dozor giving us an inclusive approach to staying healthy in body and mind. We posted a hand-out with more of his good doctor’s advice  on the NyingmaNet website. We’re sorry the connection with Tsering was not stable; here is a link here to the latest newsletter of Sarnath International Nyingma Institute, 

Please send feedback, tips or advice through the contact form. We’d love to hear from you

Expected on NyingmaNet #3, Friday May 1: 

  • Abbe Blum interviews Nyingma residents sheltering in place at Nyingma locations 
  • Dagmar Traub from the German Center leads us through a Caring practice 
  • Dharma College teacher Robin Caton addresses the importance of understanding and befriending our minds, especially in these challenging times. 
  • Mark Henderson, teacher at the Berkeley Nyingma institute, leads a brief Vajra Guru Mantra chant.    

Please join us for NyingmaNet #3 Friday May 1:  8.00-8.45 am in California, 12.00-12.45 am in Brazil, 5.00-5.45 pm in Europe, 8.30-9.15 pm in India, by clicking the zoomlink below. 

NyingmaNet welcomes new friends, so feel free to pass on this message to friends and neighbors.

For security reasons, please ask them to join by signing up here, rather than passing on the zoomlink, thank you!

New online courses are starting this week at Nyingma Institute and Dharma College, offering an array of helpful ways to support your caring and wisdom in these challenging times. The Nyingma Centers in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Cologne. and Amsterdam offer a choice of online classes in their local languages. In the Dharma Publishing webstore you can order books, meditation cushions, and also a choice of self study programs that you can do in your own time in your own pace.  You’ll find the links and a helpful calendar overview on our website. 

We hope the teachings will encourage and inspire us all to use our time well and not give in to even the slightest despair or fear. 

NyingmaNet editorial team

Jack Petranker
Abbe Blum
Elske van de Hulst
Ignacio Ercole
Wei-Li King