EXPERIENCES AT KTD: The Green Tara Retreat

_MG_8621_MG_8605A little before 6 a.m. the sound of the gong announces the start of the day’s activities at KTD. The first practice, Taking Refuge and prostrations, energizes us and leaves us prepared physically and mentally to receive the teachings of the day. A sense of joy has overtaken us. Each retreatant starts his/hers activities very diligently. The discipline that we generate throughout the day, as Venerable Dämcho says, helps us to control our mind, to be more conscious and to decide wisely so as not to be led by our impulses and emotions. As a result, this also helps kindness to arise within us. The environment in which we breathe is one of great peace, camaraderie and kindness towards all that surround us and towards ourselves.

_MG_8146_MG_8585The diverse activities of the retreat including the teachings, practices, workshops, and even the breaks, happen with fluidity and joyous effort. If retreatants aren’t in the gompa, they are giving time to their Karma Yoga jobs –thus serving others.  As a result of the tranquility and beauty we breathe in here, some are inspired to take hikes, while others exercise or take photos. Some of us write, talk to other participants and while others prefer to review teachings or read Dharma books. In some cases, we nap or rest to recharge so that we can continue with vitality throughout the day’s activities. We also meditate, reflect, and assimilate the marvelous teachings we are receiving on the Green Tara practice.

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_MG_8558The experiences in the retreat have been diverse and profound. The one that has especially filled us with happiness and inspiration: being in the presence of Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche, surrounded by the wisdom and compassion that he teaches us. Due to his generosity, we have had the opportunity to spend time one on one with him or in a group, and this has bred in us feelings of confidence, admiration and respect. We have also had the beautiful opportunity to meet participants from other countries and share together life lessons regarding the practice, our spiritual paths and our lives in general. This retreat space is very conducive to generating new friendships amongst us.

IMG_7897_MG_8593For many the most marvelous experience is just being here at KTD, receiving profound teachings that are so beneficial. No longer blocked by previous obstacles, we have at last gathered the external and internal conditions which have enabled us to attend this amazing retreat. Listening to commentary amongst us – and now more than halfway through the retreat—we consider ourselves very fortunate to be living this experience at KTD. We share profound feelings of happiness, confidence, inspiration, humility and responsibility, and a particularly profound gratitude towards Rinpoche and Venerable Dämcho. Because of them and the blessings from HH Karmapa, we are having this incredible opportunity and special encounter with Tara. We are also getting to know ourselves and the true nature of our own minds. Changes are happening at the most subtle of levels. They are radical; and they are taking place at the very root of our own being.

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RETIRO DE TARA VERDE, KTD 2014

Writers / Escritores
Andrea Tague
Lorena Orozco
Verónica Frutos
Arturo Cordero
América Vera

Translator / Traductora
Raquel Cajiga

Editors / Editores
Hope Jinishian
Beth Keenan

Photographs / Fotografías
Alessandra Otero
Nelly Toledo

Coordinators / Coordinadores
Leslie Serna
Ven. Tenzin Dapel
Alberto Fournier

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