Dates for 2020 have not yet been announced.

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Celebrating the Buddha’s Birth, Enlightenment & Parinirvana

Saga Dawa 2019 

Saga Dawa, or the fourth month of the Tibetan calendar, starts June 4th and ends on July 2nd in 2019. This holy month includes days celebrating the Buddha’s birth, enlightenment, and passing away into parinirvana. 

You are invited to join us for a free half-day event at Nyingma Institute! 

Event: Prayers and Chanting for Saga Dawa 

Date: Saturday, June 22, 2019, from 10 am – 1 pm 

10 – 11:30 / Practice session

11:30 – Noon / Tea Break

Noon – 1 pm / Practice session

This event is followed by vegetarian lunch at 1 pm. If you’d like to join for lunch, please let us know in advance so we know how much to make! You can contact us at or (510) 809-1000.

Cost: Free, but donations are very much appreciated.


About Saga Dawa

Saga Dawa is the most holy month of the year for Tibetan Buddhists. It usually starts in May or June. During this very special time, meritorious action is multiplied 100,000 times, so positive actions are especially powerful. The most important days within the month of Saga Dawa are the birth of the Buddha and the Buddha’s Enlightenment and Parinirvana, which is known as Saga Dawa Düchen; düchen means “great occasion.”

Buddhists may travel to temples and monasteries to practice in a formal but celebratory way by reciting devotional prayer, sutras and mantras. They also may make a point to go on pilgrimage, practice circumambulation, and make offerings of generosity and butter lamps throughout this month. Of these meritorious practices, one of the most important is reciting and honoring the precious words of the Buddha. 

If you’d like to do something special during this period of time, we recommend reading and reciting sutras, doing extra practice, as well as observing vegetarianism and going alcohol-free.

Activities at Nyingma Institute

At the Nyingma Institute, we celebrate Saga Dawa each year with events and devotional practice, with traditional practices led by  the deans, Lama Palzang and Pema Gellek.

Usually we celebrate in the meditation garden, however this year it is under construction! Learn more.