Free Programs


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Below is a list of our free programs. Click on the title or scroll down for details and descriptions.


Finding Inner Peace Classes
Monday through Friday, March 16-20, 7-8:00 PM, FREE

Each weeknight evening during our spring quarter break the Institute will offer free classes designed to increase inner peace and release tension. Each class will highlight movement and sitting practices that provide tools to break free of stress and deepen meditation. Everyone is welcome to attend the entire series, or to drop-in on any class session.

Monday, March 16, 7-8 PM: Meditation, the Key to Inner Peace

Tuesday, March 17, 7-8 PM: Cultivating a Loving Heart

Wednesday, March 18, 7-8 PM: Tibetan Yoga: Movement as Meditation

Thursday, March 19, 7-8 PM: Mantra: Healing Sound

Friday, March 20: 7-8 PM: Gentle Techniques for Releasing Stress



Every Sunday evening at the Nyingma Institute:

Tibetan Chanting
5-6 PM
The practice of mantra enables us to restore a natural balance and harmony in our lives. When we chant a mantra, we are free to transcend habitual reflexes. The sound of mantra can still the mind and senses, relax the body, and connect us with natural healing energy. - Tarthang Tulku, Hidden Mind of Freedom.
Every Sunday we invite the public to join us for an hour of Tibetan chanting and meditation.

Sunday Lecture Series

6-7 PM

A talk on Nyingma teachings is presented by a Nyingma Institute faculty member or visiting scholar. 

March 2015 Talks: Focus on Meditation

Nyingma Institute Open House

Upcoming Dates in 2015:

Sunday, March 22
 Sunday, June 7
Sunday, August 30
Sunday, October 4
Sunday, December 6

3-5 PM.

Quarterly open houses introduce Kum Nye, and meditation, and provide the opportunity to meet Institute faculty and staff. The open house program runs from 3-5 PM with light refreshments, followed by our regular Sunday chanting at 5 pm and talk at 6 PM. Come for some or all of the activities. All open house events are free.

  • Prayer wheel and meditation garden tour
  • Tibetan Relaxation (Kum Nye yoga) demonstration
  • Talk on the Nyingma Institute, its programs and activities
  • Class and program counseling
  • Reception with light refreshments


Full Moon Chant
Each month, 8-9:30 PM

In many Buddhist lands, the full moon is a time to gather for prayer and meditation. We continue this tradition at the Nyingma Institute through holding a chanting ceremony on full moon nights. Join Nyingma students and friends in chanting the Vajra Guru Mantra interspersed with periods of meditation. The chant is held in one of our classrooms and is led by a faculty member, from 8 - 9:30 PM.

Upcoming Full Moon Chants in 2015

  • Thursday, March 5

March 2015 Talks: Focus on Meditation

March talks explore some of the many doors to meditation and insight, utilizing analysis, movement, and introspective practices that open heart and mind.


Sunday, March 1, 6-7 PM
Ken McKeon on "Translucent Body; Radiant World."

Our way of relating to our bodies is often very rigid and tends to restrict our potential as embodied beings. However, this rather frozen picture can be thawed. It is possible to allow a greater measure of liveliness, clarity, and intimacy with our surroundings to replace the isolated appearances of ‘body’, ‘mind’, and ‘world’. Tarthang Tulku, Time, Space, and Knowledge.

This talk presents introspective practices drawn from the Time, Space, and Knowledge vision that cultivate an awareness of the interactions and interfaces between body and mind, objects and events. Surfaces and partitions become transparent to an unqualified openness of being.


Sunday, March 8, 6-7 PM
Olivia Hurd on "Meditations that Awaken the Heart."

An awakened heart, embodying our deepest knowledge of truth and love, can be the door to the spiritual path. Meditation instructor Olivia Hurd will discuss and present meditative practices designed to cultivate the ground for such awakening.

Sunday, March 15, 6-7 PM
Jack van der Meulen on "Grounding Awareness in the Body."

In the energetic system outlined in Tibetan Yoga, the lower body is the center of vitality and health. When we lose connection with this vitality through an overemphasis on mental tasks, we may feel drained by our work and become prone to a host of aches and pains. In this talk, Tibetan Yoga instructor Jack van der Meulen will demonstrate gentle exercises that re-energize the belly, hips, and legs, reconnecting us to the vitality of full embodiment.

Sunday, March 22, 6-7 PM
Hugh Joswick on "Insight through Meditation."

Western medical science has ample evidence of the beneficial physical and psychological effects of meditation. The Buddhist tradition also points out its value in catalyzing the process of insight. Meditation instructor Hugh Joswick will discuss the connection between meditation and insight and will lead participants in meditation practice.

Sunday, March 29, 6-7 PM
Sylvia Gretchen on "Death, Bardo, and Rebirth in the Tibetan Tradition."

Tibetan Buddhists (especially in the Nyingma tradition) have developed many powerful practices for use at the time of death. All of them are alike in recognizing the immense power of our mind—thoughts, attitudes, and openness—to shape experience. These teachings describe the states that one experiences after death (known as the ‘Bardo’) in great detail and also instruct us in how to move through these states in the best possible way.

We are taught that the transition between one life and another presents a unique opportunity for spiritual development for those with a stable meditation practice. This talk by the Co-Dean of the Nyingma Institute Sylvia Gretchen will give an overview of some of these teachings and will present a classic practice that helps prepares one for the time of death.


Please feel free to contact us at (510) 809-1000 or email us at