(This page will ultimately be a section in the "Who We Are" page.)


("About Karme Choling" - is part of the original document but needs to go higher on the "Who We Are" page.)

About Karme Choling

Situated on 500 acres of serene countryside in Northeastern Vermont, Karme Choling is a residential meditation center founded by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. The land is enriched and supported by rolling meadows, woodland trails, a one-acre organic garden, and facilities such as retreat cabins and an archery range. Originally home to the Abenaki people, the land Karme Choling is now on was once a dairy farm before Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s first students purchased it and turned it into a retreat center. Starting as a farmhouse with one shrine room in the attic, Karme Choling was the first Karma Kagyu meditation center established in the United States.




A History of Shambhala's Lineage Teachers

Moving Forward With What We've Learned

Karmê Chöling continues to operate as a meditation retreat center. Although there have been controversies involving leadership throughout the history of Shambhala as an organization, Karmê Chöling is committed to building on what has been learned from the past. We have made remarkable strides to address systemic issues within the historical and cultural context of Shambhala.

In order to create an environment where students' practice can come first and be protected by a safe environment, we are taking responsibility to improve the overall health, morale, and welfare of the community. This work is vital for future generations to benefit from our tradition and heritage.

In the timeless classic Shambhala: The Sacred Path of the Warrior, Chögyam Tungpa Rinpoche says,

The essence of warriorship, or the essence of human bravery is refusing to give up on anyone or anything ... in the vision of the Great Eastern Sun, no human being is a lost cause. We don't feel we have to put a lid on anyone or anything. We are always willing to give things a chance to flower.

At Karmê Chöling, we are not hiding or denying our dirt. We are taking steps to address it and growing in the process. As a result, we are seeing many green shoots and blossoming flowers.

Steps That Have Been Taken Globally

At Shambhala Global Services (Karmê Chöling's parent organization)

Steps That Have Been Taken Locally

At Karmê Chöling

Additionally, Karmê Chöling has done considerable work in our local land center to address these same issues:

  • Care and Conduct Committee: We are updating our current Care and Conduct policy to strengthen our embodiment of the view and practices described in the Shambhala Code of Conduct.
  • The members on this committe will in turn become the staff that participants and household members can reach out to if they feel that there has been misconduct at Karmê Chöling.
  • Applicant Diversity Committee: We are finding ways to bring more diversity into our leadership, teachers, staff and participants.
  • College & University Outreach: Karmê Chöling is in community partnership with local and regional colleges and universities through workstudy programs.
  • Chaplain: Karmê Chöling has established and filled a position for a professional chaplain on staff. You can reach Chaplain Alley at:
  • Mediator: Karmê Chöling has a trained Formative Mediator on staff. Ella can be reached at:
  • Karmê Chöling also has a Code of Conduct facilitator from Shambhala Global on staff.
  • Women in Leadership Retreat: Karmê Chöling is hosting the first Women in Leadership program this year, sponsored by Shambhala Global Services and led by Tara Templin. Learn more and register

We have gone through the process of bearing witness to immense pain, discord, and division. We are committed to societal harmony and ensuring everyone's safety by engaging in continuing education, teacher training, staff training, and emphasizing the immense value of care and ethical conduct in our community. Furthermore, we are attempting to shine a light on the darkest corners of our checkered past by ensuring that marginalized voices are heard.

Furthermore, Karmê Chöling is developing new initiatives to create a culture of sanity, stability, inclusion, and change through meditation and social action. This is leading to compassionate dialogue, deep listening, and tolerance for individuals with other teachers, and community building -- as well as rebuilding.

Everyone is welcomed at Karmê Chöling!

At Karmê Chöling, you are invited to be a part of the positive change you want to see and feel. If you have ideas on how we can improve we are open to hearing your feedback!

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