Pema Khandro is a Tibetan Buddhist teacher, scholar and humanitarian,
She specializes in the philosophy and practice of Tibet’s Buddhist Yogis and the Great Perfection teachings (Dzogchen).
Ordained in the Nyingma lineage, enthroned as a tulku and trained as an academic, her teachings celebrate the dynamic coalescence of tradition and the modern context.
As an advocate for the importance of the non-monastic tradition of Buddhist Yogis in the future of American Buddhism, she also does academic research to fill the need for research on the non-monastic traditions of Buddhism. Pema Khandro has a master’s degree in the study of Tibetan Buddhism and speaks multiple languages including Tibetan, English, Chinese and Spanish. She is currently completing a PhD at the University of Virginia.
Pema Khandro is the founder of the Buddhist Yogis Sangha, the Yogic Medicine Institute and three residential centers. To learn more about Pema Khandro visit www.PemaKhandro.org
Pema Khandro’s Teachings
The major principles of Pema Khandro’s teachings are education, experience, embodiment and service.
The Importance of Education
Pema Khandro’s teachings focus on Buddhist philosophy and the cultivation of what she calls “spiritual intelligence,” the capacity to develop rigorous self-awareness and deep-questioning. She offers ongoing courses in Buddhist study such as Vajrayana Training and the Ngakpa Seminary in order to foster in-depth study of Buddhist philosophy in an accessible format.
The Importance of Integrated Experience
The trainings and courses offered by Pema Khandro emphasize practices which work with the view as the path. Therefore focus of the trainings are training one’s perception and learning to cultivate wisdom and presence in body and mind. It is especially focused on cultivating Buddhist practice within everyday life experiences.
Pema Khandro’s teaching is that mind, emotions, dream, changes, meditation practices, body, relationship and community provide ideal contexts for exploring the lived meaning of the Buddhist teachings.
This focus on the view as the path and embracing an active life are the continuation of the legacy of her lineage as a tulku in Tibetan Buddhism’s Nyingma and Kagyu traditions. Pema Khandro was recognized and enthroned as the reincarnation of a nineteenth century yogini who practiced in Eastern Tibet. She continues the legacy of those teachings offering courses on Dzogchen, Chod and the Six Yogas. Pema Khandro Rinpoche was ordained as a yogini in the Nyingma tradition and received authorization to pass the non-monastic lineage of Buddhist Yogis, Ngakpas and Naljorpas onto her students, a task which she has dedicated Ngakpa Intl. to since 1999.
The Importance of Embodied Practice
A major feature of Pema Khandro’s teachings is the prioritizing of the physical body as a key to spiritual transformation. This stems from her history of training yoga teachers and her work as a Tibetan naturopath. Her message is training the mind and working with emotions can be made most accessible when also considering the body’s ecology, the importance of nutrition and the practical tools of Tibetan Yoga and Dzogchen.
Pema Khandro’s Activities At over five hundred public teachings for more than a decade and a half, Pema Khandro has shared the practices of the Buddhist Yogis in public programs, in retreats and trainings. She offers regular online courses and ongoing trainings as well as weekend intensive retreats.
The current headquarters of her teaching is a residential urban retreat center in Berkeley, California which has a dozen full time residents.
The Importance of Service
Pema Khandro’s community is run by volunteers who are committed to giving back to Buddhism in its homeland. As the founder of Ngakpa House, she engages her students, friends and community in annual fundraising to provide financial support for children living the the borderlands of the Himalayas.
To learn more about Pema Khandro’s activities visit www.PemaKhandro.org