Living at Karmê Chöling

Residency at Karmê Chöling

Live at a Buddhist retreat center in Vermont
Meditate everyday with community
Keep your daytime job 

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“What do I love about living at Karmê Chöling?
I love absolutely everything about living here!”
Moya Hallstein


Why live at Karmê Chöling?

Residential Retreat Center

You don’t want to leave your work, studies or retirement life style

While most other residency programs don’t allow you to keep working, at Karme Choling you can telecommute to your regular job while living in a dharmic community.

You’re looking for structure and inspiration

Life is full of distractions and it can be difficult to settle into your meditation practice. It’s challenging to separate yourself out from your usual responsibilities. Without a community of people who understand what you are trying to do, it can feel lonely and isolating too. You’re looking for structure and inspiration within a community.

Your Life is in transition and you need to reflect

You’re in one of the transition points of life; the place where one phase ends and you are facing a new beginning. This can bring about a complete shift in perspective. You need a place to let your thoughts settle as you figure out your path forward. .

You’re tired of feeling trapped by your habitual patterns. You’re ready to progress on your path of meditation and mindfulness

You want to change how you view life, but you need a safe place to unpack, observe, and release old, harmful mental patterns that have been bottlenecking your personal growth. Realizing that conventional methods aren’t going to bring you happiness, you’re ready to give yourself the time and space to explore different options.

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Every flower needs the right conditions to grow

Karmê Chöling provides the ideal environment needed for personal growth and discovery

  • Quiet and serene setting on 700 rural acres in Vermont
  • A household that structures it’s day around meditation
  • A community of people who support meditation and mindfulness
  • Mentorship by experienced meditation practitioners
  • Cohorts who accept & support you on your spiritual path
  • A place to discover who you are

What Residents Say

About Living at Karmê Chöling


“Karme Choling was life transforming”

“My residency at Karme Choling was life transforming. After leaving a career in the military, I needed a place to unwind, unpack, find spiritual guidance, and experience Bodhichitta. In the process, I obtained life long friendships, a wonderful meditation instructor, opportunites to go on solo cabin retreats, and attend many in-house retreats. It’s made a huge difference in the overall quality of my life to be a member of Karme Choling and feel the Great Eastern Sun wherever I go — even on zoom. Whatever small merit gained from staying at KCL, dedicated it to others, do good, be inspired, be kind, and take the good medicine of dharma.”

“You never know who you’ll meet,”

“And what you’ll learn from the beautiful people and the blessed land of this community. The energies are supportive as you transform on the path. From the natural elemental wonders of the river flowing, the morning mist rising, the trees and meadow waving, the garuda moss surrounding, the crystal rock of dragon and lotus formations, the trails and sky are bountiful reflections, the offerings are endless and it is up to us to meet halfway. Nourished with food grown from the care of the earth and community hands is uplifting. This is a community of practitioners authentically living with laughter and tears as we encounter daily life and learn how to work with our mind and heart. No end of celebration and practice opportunities here. Show up, see how you meet what’s needed.”

“Residency is a true exploration”

“Residency is a true exploration in what it means to live in a meditative community. It humanizes others’ lives and allows people to take a look at what is beneath the speed of daily life. This happens because of the collective touchstone that is group meditation practice. Practicing together in an ongoing way over time can bring the meaning in life to the forefront of one’s experience; there isn’t another opportunity like this out there.”


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What to expect at Karmê Chöling

Mentorship, Dharma Teachings & Community Support


Live around world renowned dharma teachers who are in our household or live in the surrounding local community. These teachers include Acharya Suzann Duquette, Acharya Dan Hessey, and Acharya Michael Greenleaf, all who act as role models for the community. Receive formal Buddhist sitting meditation instruction from a mentor on a regular basis. This is an opportunity to discuss questions you have from your dharma reading or meditation and mindfulness practice


Residents attend many Karmê Chöling programs for FREE. These can include week long meditation retreats, classes on the Buddhist foundational material, Bodhisattva practices Shambhala classes, intro to Buddhism talks, and other hinayana and mahayana material. Gain access to archives and library materials. This is an amazing treasure of dharmic material that features well known luminaries from the Tibetan Buddhist world.


Step into a household structure that provides greater discipline for meditation and allows for the mental space to settle deeper into your practice. Attend our community meditation sessions twice a day and our dharma and mindfulness book groups once a week. Inspire and energize your mindful learning and meditation practice by living in a community of people who have a shared vision.

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Meditation Support for Residents

For Residents at Karmê Chöling

Amenities Available

To Karmê Chöling Residents

Costs & Fees

Start with a month Residency

We ask that people come for a one month stay initially to make sure residency is a good fit for everyone. If you are interested in staying longer it’s fine to say so from the beginning.
You may also want to consider some of our shorter guided group meditation classes or a meditation intensive.

Setup/Move-In Fee
$150 This fee covers setup/organizing of the overall residency.

Monthly Payment includes:

  • Room with shared bath
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Tea, & Supper
  • Utilities + wifi
  • Amenities
  • Regular meetings with meditation instructor
  • Many classes & retreats for Free

All for $1100 – $2200/month depending on the room you choose.
(This does not include office space)

Feel free to reach out to our Residency Coordinator at residencycoordinator@karmecholing.org with any questions you have concerning residency.

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Accommodations, Food & Office Space



Office Space


Living at Karmê Chöling

I’m not sure if I’m ready to commit to living long term at a retreat center. Is there some way I can try this out first without staying for an entire month?
Absolutely! In fact, we encourage everyone interested in joining our residency program to spend a little time with us first to make sure it’s a good fit. This can include popping by for a day visit, doing one of our arranged land retreats, or setting up your own personal meditation retreat with us. For those who live too far away to stop by, please feel free to check out one of our online retreats.
Do I have to be a Buddhist?
No, not at all, though you will need to be comfortable living within a Shambhala Buddhist community. We engage in chanting before sitting meditation sessions, which some people don’t care for and opt out of.
Do I have to meditate?
Yes, all residents at Karme Choling are expected to join in daily sitting meditation at least four times per week. In this way we continue to uphold our community and strengthen each other’s mindfulness practice.
Do I have to stay an entire month?
Not at all! For those who want to dip their toes into the waters of Karmê Chöling before signing up for a residential retreat, we strongly recommend trying a shorter retreat first. These can include a meditation intensive, either the Personal Meditation Retreat or one of our Cabin Retreats. These are perfect for getting to know the culture or Karme Choling. We have options that span from shorter terms, like a weekend retreat, to long term meditation retreats, like a ten day meditation retreat or a 3 month Buddhist retreat.
What are the working environments like?
Residents can choose to work from their room or to join our coworking program, which includes shared or private office space rentals. Whatever you choose, Karme Choling offers all residents on the land solid Wifi.
What’s the accommodations like?
There are a variety of spaces with shared bathrooms. There are limited options for private bathrooms. Please take a look at our accommodation page for details.
What if I realize that the residency program isn’t right for me after I arrive?
At Karme Choling we have a 7 day ‘change your mind’ policy where you can get a refund for the amount of unused days left (minus set-up fees) without penalty. If we aren’t the right fit, no hard feelings.
Can I bring my pet?
Sadly, no. There just isn’t enough space, not everyone is comfortable around animals and there are people with allergies.
How many people live at KCL?
Between 20-30 people live at Karmê Chöling at a time.
Do I have to be vaccinated for COVID-19?
Yes, all residents must be vaccinated before arrival.

How to join a Buddhist community

Join us at Karme Choling and continue your journey in becoming a more sane and compassionate person.

Remember, Karme Choling has a seven day “Not the right fit? Not a problem” refund guarantee.

The journey begins with a simple application. After we review it, we’ll be in touch promptly to set up an interview to discuss further details and answer any of your questions.

Are you ready to:

  • Develop mindfulness in real life?
  • Gain clarity and self-awareness through meditation?
  • Live in community within a Buddhist retreat center?

Take the leap

Apply for Residency