Photo Galleries of Activities at Gampo Abbey

From this page you will be able to explore photos of many different aspects of life at Gampo Abbey.

Ordination and Hair Cutting Ceremony for Lion residents

At the request of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Venerable Thrangu Rinpoche introduced temporary ordination (Tsanchö Genyen/Upasaka Brahmacharya ordination) to give Dharma practitioners an opportunity to experience monasticism without making a lifetime commitment.  The prerequisite is the Refuge Vow.  Temporary ordination is offered within the context of our monastic residencies from the Shambhala Monastic Order.  Taking temporary ordination involves two ceremonies.  The first is a public hair cutting where the residents heads are shaved leaving a small top knot of hair.  At the end of the hair cutting ceremony residents are given their temporary monastic robes.  This is followed the next day by the actual ordination ceremony which is lead by the monastic preceptor.  The preceptor introduces the five precepts, cuts the last remaining hair of each participant and then offers the vow.  The vows are transmitted at the point in the ceremony where the preceptor snaps their fingers.


Gate Closing for 3 Year Retreat at Sopa Choling, Sept 16, 2016

A gate closing ceremony was held on September 2016 to begin the 3rd cycle of the Group G, 3 year retreat at Sopa Choling.  The ceremony began with a lhasang held below the retreat center attended by the retreatants, Gampo Abbey monastics and some members of the local sangha.  The lhasang is performed to purify the environment and bring down the energies in the environment to support the retreat.  Following the lhasang, a procession lead by the retreatants circumambulated the retreat center 3 times.  After the final circumambulation the retreatants joined the community outside the gate for one last good-bye before they returned to the retreat center.  A ceremonial offering was made to the local energies after the gate was closed to help create a supportive environment for the retreat.


Torma Making at Gampo Abbey

The preparation and offering of Tormas, ritual offerings made of barley dough, is a traditional practice of Buddhist monasteries in Tibet.  This practice was brought from Tibet and included in the daily practice schedule at Gampo Abbey.  This slide show documents the process of how torma are made.  While torma are offered each day as part of the evening chants, preparing of torma by the community is scheduled as required.


2016 Gagye Eve Talks

On the evening of the day before the end of the Yarne retreat all of the monastics at the Abbey must give a short talk based upon the theme of the Yarne retreat.  These talks are referred to as Gagye Eve talks.  Along with holding the annual Yarne retreat, giving the Gagye Eve talks are one of the requirements for all Buddhist monastic communities.  The other condition is to hold the bi-monthly sojong confession ceremony.  All these of these practices are held at Gampo Abbey.


2016 Annual Lobster Release

Our 2016 lobster release was highlighted by visitors from Canada’s national broadcaster the CBC’s regional maritime program Land and Sea.  They joined us for the day as we sailed with Captain Mark Timmons from Pleasant Bay harbour to the waters just off the shore from Gampo Abbey.  The cold winds kept the boat rolling as we released almost 200 lbs of lobsters in the same waters where many of them had been caught earlier that day.


Oryoki Practice, Yarne 2016 retreat

The annual Yarne retreat at Gampo Abbey traditionally includes two weeks of silent intensive retreat when meals are eaten Oryoki style.  These photos were taken during the 2016 Yarne retreat.  For more information on Oryoki practice within the Shambhala community follow this link.