September 12 to 20, 2015
Acharya Larry Mermelstein,
and Gampo Abbey Monastics
We are pleased to invite you to the fourth annual Vajrayogini Druppa, practice intensive. After last year's wonderful Vajrayogini druppa, Acharya Larry Mermelstein will return this fall to lead the druppa at Söpa Chöling, Three Year Retreat Centre.
The first druppa at Gampo Abbey was introduced in 1987 by Thrangu Rinpoche's three-year retreat master Lama Sherab Tendar. It involves the construction of a sand mandala, four practice sessions daily: practicing the entire sadhana including abhisheka and feast section. The dismantling of the sand mandala and offering this to the nagas by musical procession to the ocean concludes the druppa.
One of the many strengths of the druppa format is to familiarize new practitioners with all aspects of the entire sadhana in a very short time and to allow older practitioners to refresh their practice and to deepen it further.
"...this practice is so fundamental to the Vidyadhara’s transmission to us and such an important foundation for the vajrayana practice, especially for the mahamudra tradition." the Dorje Loppön Lodrö Dorje
Anyone who has received the Vajrayogini abhisheka is invited to attend. For more information about Söpa Chöling
Dates: September 12, 2015 to September 20, 2015
Cost: $700 Canadian
To apply: Download and complete the application form.
If you are unable to attend but have the means to make a donation to support someone else to attend this program or others at
Söpa Chöling. Click on the link below and choose Söpa Chöling Scholarship Fund.
Write to firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions
Vajrayogini Druppa 2014
In 2014 we continued with our tradition of hosting a very successful Vajrayogini Druppa at Söpa Chöling. Once again the retreat was lead by Acharya Larry Mermelstein, assisted by Nancy Huszagh, Söpa Chöling Druppon and Gampo Abbey monastics Ani Nyingje, Ani Shiwa and Ani Lhamo. Fourteen guests, many returning for a second or third Druppa, joined with the Abbey sangha for this practice intensive.
Vajrayogini Druppa 2013
Our second annual Vajrayogini Druppa, Sept 28 to Oct 6, was a great success. The Druppa was co-lead by Acharya Larry Mermelstein and Gelong Lodro Sangpo. Seventeen guests joined the ten Abbey residents and lay sangha members for 7 days of intensive practice at Söpa Chöling. We were filled to the brim, i.e., a total of 28. The new photo album highlights the preparation of the torma and sand mandala for our practice session as well as the final offering of the sand from the mandala into the Gulf of St Lawrence.
Planning has already begun for next year’s druppa.
Vajrayogini Druppa 2012
The first Vajrayogini Druppa was held at Söpa Chöling in July 2012 and was led by Dorje Loppön Lodrö Dorje and Gelong Lodrö Sangpo. Twenty-four yogis and yoginis, including 12 guests, gathered for this most wonderful and inspiring practice.
Druppa participants with their sand mandala
Dorje Loppön Lodrö Dorje teaching
Here is a report from Lodrö Sangpo:
We are happy to let you know that we have just completed (more than successfully) our Vajrayogini Druppa 2012. The participants filled the shrine room at Söpa Chöling to its full capacity. (To get an impression of the various stages, look at the photo album on our Facebook page.)
After months of preparation, which included the study of the Dorje Loppön's marvelous "Dancer in the Coemergent Mirror", the Dorje Loppön surprised us all by joining the Druppa itself for three full days during which he gave teachings going beyond his "Dancer". While emphasizing the sampannakrama, coemergence, and mahamudra aspect of the practice, he also gave detailed sadhana-related instructions on the self- and front-visualization, and in particular on the abhisheka section itself. In addition, he led us daily in the Long Werma Lhasang, followed by Lujong practice.
The Druppa itself — headed by Gelong Lodrö Sangpo — started with two days of preparation beginning with "Setting the boundaries" and "Asking for permission to construct the sand mandala", which was then followed by drawing and constructing the sand mandala, as well as the other mandalas involved, and by torma making and a little music training, since, here at the Abbey, we are performing the Druppa with the traditional "band", i.e., cymbals, drums, damaru, and bell.
The actual Druppa itself includes four daily practice sessions, during which at least once one chants through the abhisheka section, followed by a feast.
The Druppa ends with an elaborate feast which is followed by dismantling the sand mandala and the ceremonial returning of the sand to the ocean.
In our case, our last day was very joyful and became a "blast", ending with returning the sand to the ocean late at night.
May Druppa practice spread far and wide!
Some comments from participants:
"It all was perfect, sincerely! The Loppön’s methodical explanations of how to practice the sadhana were extremely helpful. Receiving the oral instructions for the abhisheka section was very important and useful. Now I know what to do!"
"Thank you for an extraordinary effort to make this program exceptional. The monastics from Gampo Abbey worked so hard and were able to create a very strong environment for practice."
"Appreciated being involved in all phases of the preparation, i.e., got some experience working on sand mandala as well as torma, etc. Appreciated the emphasis on practice versus a program and talks."
To see more photos of the 2012 Vajrayogini Druppa, click here.