Annual 9-Day Mahamudra Retreat

Richard John

February 3–12, 2023

Tuition $0 + 9 nights

In this deep meditation retreat, we will practice the classic liturgy by the Ninth Karmapa, Pointing Out the Dharmakaya. Our practice will be augmented by pith mahamudra and trekcho instructions of other great masters, including Khenpo Gangshar, Chögyam Trungpa, Tashi Namgyal, Yeshe Tsögyal, and “the Carefree Vagrant.”

This retreat will be on-site only (no online component). All participants should begin at the beginning and commit to the entire retreat. The discipline will emphasize silence, but there will be ample time for Q & A and discussion.

Tuition has been set to $0 and lodging prices for this retreat have been reduced to support the sangha in practicing at Drala Mountain Center.

Please review and understand DMC’s current COVID-19 policy before visiting DMC.


Participants must be vajrayana practitioners who have received the pointing out transmission at Vajradhatu Seminary, Sacred World Assembly, through Ocean, or from a qualified Kagyu or Nyingma rinpoche.


All participants should begin at the beginning and commit to the entire retreat.

Heart Gift

It is customary to offer a monetary Heart Gift to the teacher. The gift is completely voluntary according to your inspiration, and there is no suggested amount — any amount is appreciated!

Practice Liturgy

Those who wish to practice mahamudra on their own should purchase the Pointing Out the Dharmakaya liturgy and sourcebook from Nalanda Translation Committee (NTC).  If you want the liturgy in advance, please order it directly from the NTC website and pay for shipping.

If you want to receive the liturgy at the program (and avoid shipping fees), please indicate so on the registration form. The price is $65 and you’ll reimburse Richard John at the retreat. Please note: you will not be charged for the liturgy at registration, but you do need to indicate if you wish to purchase it from Richard on site at the retreat. You’ll need to register by January 20 so your copy can be ordered.

For those who do not wish to purchase the liturgy, you can use a temporary copy for the duration of the retreat.

Richard John

An early student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Richard served as acharya for Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche for 20 years. He completed the traditional Buddhist Three-year Retreat at Gampo Abbey, and has taught meditation programs and retreats for many years in the United States, Canada and Mexico. Richard and his wife Liz reside in Halifax, Nova Scotia.


Program Details

Registration takes place from 2– 5 pm on your program start date. All participants and volunteer staff must check in at our Guest Registration house. Please arrive before 5 pm to check-in and settle into your accommodations. Your program begins with dinner, followed by an orientation. The Guest Registration house closes at 5 pm after which no one is available to provide information or orient you to your accommodations. Feb. 12 is the departure day. Further specifics regarding your program's schedule will be available upon arrival. If applicable, you will receive an email from the program coordinator in the week prior to your program with any additional information you may need.