The Power of Authentic Gesture

A Mudra Space Awareness Weekend

Mudra Program


Suzann Duquette

Vicky Moyle

Date & Time Details:

June 2023


Hybrid (online and on-land): Pavilion

Program Fee:

Generosity Price - $275

Tuition - $220

Room/Meals Fee:

This will be added in during the registration process.
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Heart Gift:

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Wellness Update:

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Contact Us:

Karmê Chöling
(802) 633-2384

This program has been cancelled.

Another Opportunity for Mudra Coming Soon!

Save the Dates for an In-person, 4-day Mudra embodied space awareness retreat, October 5-8. There will also be a weekend-only option.

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Mudra means 'gesture'

We make gestures all the time.
Our movements are gestures.
The words we speak are gestures.

Gestures are how we relate with others and the environment around us.

Our whole life is a gesture

Typically, we use gestures to express our personalities, to get what we want to convince or influence others, to ward off or avoid what we dislike. They are appropriated as transactional tools - intertwined with our preferences. Although we may put a great deal of effort into honing our speech and perfecting our actions, often we use our gestures in the short term without a thought for their living quality that lasts beyond a brief expression.

What if we looked at our gestures with a bigger sense of their impact?

What would a truly powerful gesture look like? More importantly, how would it feel
What if we didn't have to try so hard?

  • Could genuinely powerful expressions be less self-involved?
  • Could real power be something different from what we thought?
  • Could a gesture with power be non-aggressive?

Nonaggression is the key to life

Chögyam Trungpa said that nonaggression is the key to life. Mudra Space Awareness was a mind/body discipline that he developed and offered to his early dharma students. He saw how important it was to help them explore their perceptions deeply and discover their own particular styles of relating to reality.

Relating with our own tension

Chögyam Trungpa introduced Mudra, a series of core intensification and relaxation exercises, in 1973 at a major conference of theater leaders and visual and performance artists. He emphasized that:

In order to relate with space properly, we must learn to relate with our own tension first.

In Mudra Space Awareness, this fundamental approach leads us to see and feel how our human perceptions operate. We begin to better understand the basic energy of our senses - as well as our habitual responses - that underlie any activity we engage in. And we discover how this complements and refines our meditative awareness.

Discovering the hidden power of a spacious mind and authentic gesture

Mudra Space Awareness trains us to:

  • Explore the space in which the dramas of life arise
  • Synchronize our body, speech, and mind to respond to space -however it arises - with bravery and presence and
  • Engage in our living dramas with kindness, more kindness, intelligence, and fearlessness.
  • We learn how to meet our world more authentically

Core intensification and relaxation exercises open us to an expanded perceptual, emotional, and mental experience. Related exercises create a bridge for applying authentic gesture in all aspects of our lives.

There is nothing quite like Mudra - There is nothing quite like the core intensification and relaxation exercises of Mudra. With each exercise, every time, I feel a more spacious mind, a decrease in self absorption, an increase of awareness, and a lighter state of being. These core exercises are like a doorway to experiencing sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch in a fresh way, and are building blocks for authentic gesture.

Suzann Duquette

What can you expect in this retreat?

  • An introduction and/or deepening in the power of Mudra, or authentic gesture, based on nonaggression and space.
  • Core intensification and relaxation exercises - the building blocks for relating with our senses fully and for wakeful and compassionate living
  • Individual and group practices
  • Contemplations and slogans based on key Mudra principles
  • Shambhala Art-related exercises

This retreat is for you if you…

  • Are interested in exploring gesture and space in order to relate more genuinely and authentically to the present moment
  • Would like to have a better understanding of your reactions and underlying approach to events in life
  • Want to do deep work with the senses to understand their basic energy and how they affect your relation to reality
  • Are curious about experience from a perceptual, non-conceptual basis versus experience from the self-involved, ego mind
  • Would like to join others in this exploration of presence through gesture

Arrival & Departure

Please plan on arriving between 3pm and 6pm on June 23 to register and check-in.
Dinner is offered at 6:30pm.
The program begins that evening at 7:30pm.

The weekend will conclude on June 25 with lunch.

If you have any questions, we would love to hear from you. Please contact Joan Carney at

Prerequisites for attending on zoom:

Online Introduction to Mudra Space Awareness

For those new to Mudra, there will be two opportunities to take a short 3-hour introductory class. These will be offered on:

Attending this practice session will qualify you to attend the retreat via Zoom. Everyone is welcome to join this session, which will include a contextualization of Mudra, selected key postures and exercises, and discussion.


Karmê Chöling values its commitment to making programs affordable and available to all who wish to study with us. To support this commitment we provide two program price options.

Generosity Price: $275.00
You're able to help us with this commitment by choosing the "Generosity Price". The money above the basic tuition cost goes into a scholarship fund for those who might not be able to attend a program otherwise.

Tuition: $220.00
This is the price of the program, it does not include housing options or material fees.

Please Note:
Price does not include accommodations, which will be added during the registration process.


Payment Policies:
Please read the payment policy before proceeding with registration.

Financial Aid:
Karmê Chöling offers full-time student discounts, scholarships and other financial aid.

Program Credit:
If using existing program credit to pay for a program, you must pre-register for this program at least two weeks prior to the program start date by calling the front desk (802-633-2384 x3000). Program credit may not be used to pay for housing or practice materials and may not be used on or after arrival day.


Suzann Duquette Karme Choling
Suzann Duquette

Mudra Instructor - Suzann Duquette began her lifelong exploration of Mudra in 1974 as part of the Berkeley Mudra Space Awareness Group led by Dr. Craig Warren Smith. Suzann views the power of embodied awareness as essential to awakening, and Mudra, as taught by Chögyam Trungpa, as a profound method for tasting direct experience and bringing embodiment into effective action in all aspects of our lives. Among many Mudra gatherings and retreats, Suzann co-taught a landmark, month-long Mudra and meditation retreat with Dr. Smith in 2004 and the 2019 Mudra Summit that brought together leading Mudra teachers at Karmê Chöling. Appointed as co-director of Karmê Chöling (1995 - 2001) by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, Suzann was also a senior teacher of the center, 2007 - 2012, and its resident senior teacher, 2012 - 2023. Suzann also teaches Daoist-Qigong and strategic leadership in the lineages of Dr. Eva Wong. She lives with her husband, Jan, in Barnet, where they own and run Blue Skies, a B & B.

Vicky Moyle Karme Choling
Vicky Moyle

Since 2012, Vicky Moyle has studied the discipline of Mudra Space Awareness with 1st and 2nd generation teachers Craig Warren Smith, Lee Worley, Suzann Duquette, and Greg Heffron. She also considers as her teachers every Mudra practitioner she has ever met. She practiced Zen Buddhism for 13 years and has been a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche since 2011. She is retired from careers in professional counseling and teaching mathematics.

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