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Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Transforming the Mind—Transforming the Heart
Eight Verses on Thought Transformation

Lama Zopa Rinpoche, the spiritual director of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT), is the recognized reincarnation of the great meditator known as the Lawudo Lama. Rinpoche was born in Thami, Nepal, in 1946, not far from the Lawudo cave, where his predecessor meditated for the final 20 years of his life. He first entered the monastery at age 4. Later at age 10, Rinpoche went to Tibet, where he stayed until the Chinese occupation of Tibet in 1959 forced him into exile in India. He continued his studies at Sera Jhe Monastery (in exile at the refuge camp in Buxa Duar). It is here that he met and studied with Lama Thubten Yeshe and became his heart disciple. Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa RinpocheÂ’s first contact with Westerners was in 1965 in Darjeeling. In 1969 they founded the Nepal Mahayana Gompa Center at Kopan, where the lamas began to teach courses on Buddhism for Westerners. In 1974, they began traveling around the world to teach and establish Dharma centers. When Lama Yeshe passed away in 1984, Rinpoche took over as spiritual head of the FPMT. Rinpoche is the author of several books, including Transforming Problems, Door to Satisfaction, Virtue and Reality, and Teachings from the Vajrasattva Retreat. With many projects around the world, Rinpoche is well known for his peerless dedication to the building of a 500-foot Maitreya Statue in northern India.

Ven. Geshe Ngawang Dakpa
Introduction to Kalachakra

Eight Verses of Thought Transformation

Four Noble Truths

Uttaratantra—Sublime Continuum of Mahayana

Cultivating a Bodhisattva’s Motivation

Bodhisattva’s Way of Life Commentary (2010 Sessions)

Six-Session Guru Yoga Commentary

Shantideva – Bodhisattva’s Way of Life (2011 Sessions)

Ven. Geshe Ngawang Dakpa serves as resident teacher at Tse Chen Ling Center. He was born in Nangchu, northeast of Lhasa, Tibet. He became a monk at the age of ten. At the monastery he studied both Dharma and secular subjects extensively before entering Sera Je Monastery eleven years later. He fled Tibet in 1959. Upon his arrival in India, Geshe-la not only continued his monastic studies, but also spent three years at the Sanskrit University in Benares, earning an MA with honors. Invited by the Queen of Sikkim, he taught at the University of Sikkim for nearly 20 years before returning to Sera monastery in South India and obtaining his Geshe degree.

Ven. Antonio Satta
Vipassana Meditation

Ven. Antonio Satta was born in Italy in 1956. He was first introduced to Tibetan Buddhism at Lama Tsong Khapa Institute, Italy. After meeting Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche in Italy, he took novice ordination in 1979 and then full ordination from HHDL in 1981. Ven. Antonio has received teachings from HHDL, Ling Rinpoche, Serkong Rinpoche, Song Rinpoche, Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche, Rilbur Rinpoche and various other teachers, including Geshe Jampa Lodro and Geshe Ngawang Dhargye. He also studied (including Tibetan language) for 4 years at Tharpa Choeling Switzerland with Geshe Rabten, and for 4 years at Nalanda Monastery with Geshe Jampa Techok. His main teachers are Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. In late 1981 Ven. Antonio spent a number of months in Sri Lanka at a Mahasi Sayadaw Insight Meditation Centre learning the practice of Vipassana. Since 1991 Ven. Antonio has been living in Australia, translating and teaching at Vajrayana Institue, Sydney, teaching and tutoring for the Buddhist Study Program at Chenrezig Institute, and teaching at other FPMT centres in Australia, New Zealand, Europe, and India. Over the last six years Ven. Antonio has been concentrating on trying to bring the Vipassana practice as taught in the Theravada system to westerners of Tibetan tradition.

Dr. Yangdron Kalzang Yangdron
The Art of Prostration

Menpa (Doctor) Kalzang graduated from the Tibetan Medical University in Lhasa, Tibet and received her Master’s degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine from Five Branches Institute College of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Santa Cruz. She has been working for many years in the field of Tibetan Medicine, both as a practicing physician and teacher. Her goal is to integrate Ancient Tibetan, Chinese and Western Medicine and she is especially interested in the area of Women’s Health. For more information, visit

Emily Hsu
Dealing with Anger

Dealing with Anger and Irritation

Emily was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska, but was a resident of San Francisco for many years before heading to Nepal in 1996. While there, she attended the November Course at Kopan which was her jumping point into the Dharma. She completed FPMT’s 7-year Masters program at Institut Lama Tsong Khapa in Italy in 2004 followed by a 9-month retreat to integrate the material. Lama Zopa Rinpoche observed that it came out well for Emily to teach “at all the Bay Area centers”. Emily is teaching the foundation level classes of the Buddhist Studies Program, becoming the junior professor to Geshe Dakpa’s senior professor! Emily brings a warm, vibrant and accessible energy to her teaching at Tse Chen Ling. She is also teaching weekly at Gyalwa Gyatso Buddhist Center in San Jose, periodically at Machig Labdron Study Group in Marin and leading workshops at other centers, including Vajrapani in Boulder Creek, CA.

Ven. Lobsang Chökyi
Using the Four Opponent Powers

Discovering Buddhism: How to Develop Bodhicitta

Lobsang Chokyi has worked at TCL for more than 12 years. She has been a Buddhist for 17 years and a nun for 13. She considers teaching the Dharma her most profound and difficult practice, and loves it for keeping her honest. Her main teacher is Lama Zopa Rinpoche and she has had the good fortune to study with many amazing teachers including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Ribur Rinpoche, Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche, Geshe Ngawang Dakpa, Ven. Robina Courtin, and Geshe Michael Roach. She spent a year in Nepal and India studying and doing retreat before getting ordained and hopes one day to return. She has been Center Director, Spiritual Program Coordinator and bookkeeper for Tse Chen Ling and now is happy just to teach. She is deeply honored to serve here.

Ven. Robina Courtin
How to Meditate

Practice Means Changing Your Mind

Pilgrimage in India; Stories and Allegories

A Tibetan Buddhist nun for 24 years, Ven. Robina travels around the world inspiring and guiding students. She is known for her penetrating insight and direct teaching style. In 1996 she founded Liberation Prison Project which serves people in prisons throughout America, Australia, England, Mongolia, New Zealand, and Russia, including men who are on death row or facing life sentences. The award-winning documentary of her life, “Chasing Buddha” showcases her dedication and persistence.

Ven. Sarah Thresher
Moving Forward on the Spiritual Path
Deepening Inner Confidence and Trust

Ven. Sarah is resident teacher at Land of Medicine Buddha in Soquel, California. Originally from England, she was ordained 16 years ago by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. In addition to teaching throughout the world, Ven. Sarah was resident teacher and spiritual program coordinator at Amitabha Buddhist Center in Singapore for several years. She is currently helping to restore Buddhism in Mongolia.

Ven. Tenzin Chogkyi
Radical Compassion

Tenzin Chogkyi (formerly Petra McWilliams) became interested in meditation after reading Be Here Now and Autobiography of a Yogi in the early ’70′s. For the next 30 years, her spiritual path was meandering and haphazard, and included several dead ends, until she bought a one-way ticket to India in early 1991 with the intention of meeting His Holiness the Dalai Lama. She became a student not only of His Holiness, but also of Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche and Lama Zopa Rinpoche during the year she spent studying at Tushita Retreat Center in Dharamsala and Kopan Monastery. In late 1991, she was asked by Lama Zopa Rinpoche to come back to the US to become the co-director of Vajrapani Institute in California. In 1995, she began working at FPMT International Office, first as co-director and then later as center services coordinator. In early 2000, she began a long, solitary retreat that lasted 6 ½ years. She became a Tibetan Buddhist nun in 2004. Since emerging from retreat in the summer of 2006, Tenzin Chogkyi travels and teaches worldwide and is known for her clarity, humor and warmth.

Ven. Tsenla
Guru Devotion

Venerable Tsenla, is a Tibetan nun based in the West. She’s a close student of Lama Zopa Rinpoche and the sister of Yangsi Rinpoche who teaches at the FPMT center in Portland, Oregon. She is an accomplished translator for many lamas, and the main energy behind establishment of the nunnery connected with the Kopan Monastery (the monastery of Lama Zopa Rinpoche located in Kathmandu, Nepal).