Heartdrops of Dharmakaya and Skygazing

Alejandro Chaoul, September 26-28, 2011

Heartdrops of Dharmakaya provides methods for introducing the nature of the mind, which remains hidden behind clouds of thoughts and emotions, until direct recognition of the source, the essence, the Heart Drop. This is the method of direct introduction to Dzogchen, the highest and most subtle path of meditation in Bön.

Heart Drops of Dharmakaya was composed by Shardza Tashi Gyaltsen, a Tibetan master who passed in 1935, achieving the rainbow body. One of the most influential teachers of his time, his works are still used as textbooks in many Tibetan monasteries and yogic communities.

With vibrant energy and warm humor, Alejandro Chaoul will lead us in a series of practices that use body, speech and mind in extraordinary ways to invoke direct perception of the Nature of Mind.  Unlike methods that watch the breath or calm thoughts, these practices use body postures and simple yet potent visualizations to draw us directly and quickly to experience our essence. With the introduction to Sky Gazing, we will learn to connect to and dissolve within the vast expanse of space. Crestone’s sky and sacred surrounding mountains provide the perfect backdrop for this practice.

We are very fortunate to have Alejandro Chaoul lead these teaching as he received  them from Geshe Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche and his teacher Yongdzin Namdak Rinpoche, considered by many as the greatest living Dzogchen master of the Bön lineage, and the author of the commentary on Heart Drops of Dharmakaya published by Snow Lion.

For those of you traveling from a distance, please note that directly preceding Heartdrops of Dharmakaya is the Pith Realizations of the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyü, a complementary teaching. While Heartdrops focuses on the methods of Dzogchen, the Pith Realizations of the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyü masters focuses on the view.

Alejandro Chaoul, Ph.D., is the Director of Research at Ligmincha and the Director of Ligmincha Texas Institute for Tibetan Meditative Healing Arts. A senior student of Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche, Alejandro Chaoul is the author of Chod Practice in the Bon Religion (Snow Lion Publications, 2009) and also author and co-author of various articles focusing on the role of mind-body practices in integrative cancer care and research. He is assistant professor at the McGovern Center for Humanities and Ethics at the University of Texas-Houston Health-Science Center, and holds and adjunct position at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, where since 1999 he has facilitated meditation for cancer patients and their support systems at the Integrative Medicine Center. He is part of a small team awarded $2.4 million grant by the National Cancer Institute to investigate the possible benefits for Tibetan Yoga intervention for woman with breast cancer. Since 1995, he has been teaching Tibetan meditation and mind-body techniques throughout the United States, Latin America and Europe.

Retreat Location & Lodging: This retreat will be held at the Dharma Ocean Retreat Center near Crestone. Here are directions to the retreat center. Lodging is available at many local B&B and inns. There is car camping with picnic tables nearby in the U.S. National Forest campground just north of Crestone, the North Crestone Campground . The White Eagle Village has recently closed.

Limited hike-in primitive tent sites will be available at the Chamma Ling retreat center for $40. See below to reserve and pay for a tenting site.

Crestone Area Visitor Accommodations offers referrals and reservations to many local B&Bs and inns:
 www.crestonevisit.com[email protected] 
(719) 256-5210. You can also find a listing of local inns at: http://www.saguachecountybusiness.org/directory/accommodations.html

Hostel Accommodations: We have available 27 hostel style beds on the lower level of the Dharma Ocean retreat center. These accommodations include a mattress on the floor, linen, access to showers, and use of a shared fridge, toaster, microwave and coffee pot for simple food preparation. Beds are three to six to a room. The cost is $75 for the entire Heartdrops of Dharmakaya retreat (Sunday through Tuesday nights). Use the appropriate button below to reserve a hostel bed.

Ride Board: You can share rides on the Chamma Ling ride board.

Retreat Fees: The retreat begins at 9 am Monday and concludes at noon Wednesday. The registration fee including light lunches Monday and Tuesday is $195. A limited number of work-study positions are available with discounted registration of $125. Work study staff help either during setup or take down of the retreat, and during the retreat itself, including lunch preparation and clean up. If you attend the Heartdrops of Dharmakaya retreat and the Pith Relizations of the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyud Masters retreat you can register for both at the discounted rate of $470. Cancellation fee: $30.

Click the button below to register and send payment of $195:


Click button below to register and make payment as a work study of $125:


Click the button below to register at the discounted rate of $470 for attending both this retreat and the Pith Teachings of the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyu Masters with Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche:


Click button below to reserve a hostel bed for $75:


Our volunteers are working hard on developing plans for this event. Check back soon for updates. 

Questions? Contact [email protected] or (919)286-5055.

We look forward to seeing you in Crestone!