2021 In Review: the Year of the Metal Ox

This year, the Sakyong began his teaching with a Losar–New Year’s address to all students who had attended his teachings up to that point, followed by the final teachings of the Foundations of Dharma and Refuge course. He continued to offer teachings to a next generation young sangha group on the Supplication to the Shambhala Lineage, and offered Trident teachings to Dorje Kasung around the world. The Sakyong Wangmo joined almost all of the Sakyong’s teachings this year, sharing her deep appreciation for the dharma and the Sakyong, and her experience and advice for us as students.

In May, in response to supplications from his vajrayana students, the Sakyong offered a new cycle of teachings called the Great Mandala of Blessings, allowing vajrayana students to renew their vows and begin a series of practices focused on purification, gathering merit, and raising windhorse as a foundation for future teachings. This was also an opportunity for new students to take samaya with the Sakyong for the first time, and formally enter the vajrayana.

Over the summer, Rinpoche led a retreat for new students called The Path of Meditation, which included shamatha meditation instructions and the Shambhala meditation transmission. Many of those students then joined the next cycle of the Foundations of Dharma series called Foundations of Compassion and the Bodhisattva Vow, where fifty students took refuge for the first time.

In October, a new group of vajrayana students renewed their vows with the Sakyong, and Rinpoche taught an online week-long vajrayana retreat with over 700 students titled Pure Perception, where he continued to elaborate on the teachings and practices presented in the Great Mandala of Blessings. The retreat and feast were conducted from North America during a private visit by the Sakyong. Rinpoche will close out the year’s teaching with a celebratory vajrayana feast in December.

So far in 2021, the Sakyong’s dharma teachings have flourished through more than 41 teaching events attended by students from 26 countries.