Welcome to Maitrivana

Maitrivana (Sanskrit: "Garden of Loving Kindness"), home of Nalandabodhi Vancouver, is a meditation and study centre offering an extensive, graduated curriculum of Buddhist theoretical study and meditation practice under the direction of The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche.

The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche is a leading scholar and meditation master in the Nyingma and Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism. Rinpoche is fully fluent in English and is known for his penetrating intellect, warm humour, and lucid teaching style.

Wheelchair accessableMaitrivana is located at 4610 Earles Street in east Vancouver.

Events, Programs & News

Rebel Buddha

Rebel Buddha Book CoverThere's a rebel within you. It's the part of you that already knows how to break free of fear and unhappiness. This rebel is the voice of your own awakened mind. Dzogchen Ponlop guides you through the inner revolution that comes from unleashing your rebel buddha. For more information on Rebel Buddha, please visit www.rebelbuddha.com.

Rebel Buddha is available for sale at Lotus Books at Maitrivana.

Sunday Morning Meditation Practice

Sunday, March 3
10 am to 12 noon

@ Maitrivana, 4610 Earles Street, Vancouver

Everyone's invited to Sunday morning meditation practice (10 am - 12 noon). The morning includes shamatha (calm-abiding/resting meditation), with both sitting and walking. Newcomers most welcome. By donation.

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Open Heart Circle
followed by "37 Cleaning Practices of a Bodhisattva"

Sun, March 17
10:00 - 11:30am

@ Maitrivana, 4610 Earles Street, Vancouver

Everyone's welcome to the Open Heart Circle, a practice dedicated to people near and dear who are ill or have recently died. This practice of loving kindness was created by Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche for Nalandabodhi and the community. Open Heart Circle combines shamata meditation (calm-abiding), tonglen (sending and receiving), sukhavati, and a special dedication.

Anyone can excel at the 37 Cleaning Practices of a Bodhisattva (11:30 am to 12:07 pm). Join in 37 mindful minutes of tending to the dharma centre, Maitrivana, Garden of Loving Kindness: vacuuming, sweeping, dusting, washing, etc.. Come for Open Heart Circle, then roll up your heart sleeve to buff the wheel of dharma.

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Introduction to Buddhism

Registration is still open for new students! Join us!

@ Maitrivana, 4610 Earles Street, Vancouver

Our Introduction to Buddhism course continues in 2019, and we're still accepting new students!

This foundational curriculum, combining meditation and Buddhist study classes, was designed by Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche (Rebel Buddha, Emotional Rescue).

Feeling overwhelmed by stress? Confused about the direction of your life? Distracted by addictive social media? Seeking a balanced path? Community?

Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche writes: "Meditation is simply getting to know your mind. In each meditation session, we gather knowledge about the mind through observation, questioning, and testing. We do this over and over, until we gradually develop a meaningful understanding of our own mind."

These classes give students an opportunity to learn the fundamentals of meditation practice while also exploring basic Buddhist principles, including the Four Noble Truths, taming the "monkey mind," working with emotional triggers, and understanding karma and selflessness.

Research has proven meditation works - providing extensive health benefits, including reduced stress levels, better emotional health, and enhanced self-awareness. Mindfulness training helps us in both our workplace and personal lives - interacting with family, friends, colleagues and, well, everyone!


WHEN: Saturday mornings, 11:00 - 12:30
Here's our 2019 schedule:

  • Sat. January 5 Meditation
  • Sat. January 12 Study
  • Sat. January 26 Study
  • Sat. February 9 Study
  • Sat. February 16 Meditation
  • Sat. February 23 Study
  • Sat. March 9 Study
  • Sat. March 16 Meditation
  • Sat. March 23 Study
  • Sat. April 6 Study
  • Sat. April 13 Meditation
  • Sat. April 20 Study
  • Sat. May 4 Study
  • Sat. May 11 Meditation
  • Sat. May 18 Study
  • Sat. June 1 Study
  • Sat. June 8 Meditation

Cost for this term is $80, which includes two booklets.
Questions? Please email our Study Co-ordinator: study@nalandabodhi.ca

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Monday Night DVD Dharma Series

Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche's "Seizing Transitions as Opportunities."
Teachings by Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche.

@ Maitrivana, 4610 Earles Street, Vancouver

All are welcome to this month's screening of "Seizing Transitions as Opportunities" by Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche.

Rinpoche reminds us that "Change is the only thing we can be sure will happen. Change is always happening. . . . Change brings transition, but is not positive or negative. It is simply a moment of opportunity. Change provides opportunity. It is up to us what we do with it."

We all experience sudden tragic changes at some point in our lives, including the death of a family member, the loss of a job, divorce, sudden illness, and many other similar challenges. These changes generate sadness associated with loss and fear associated with the significant transitions that such changes bring to our lives. In these five talks, Rinpoche teaches us how to train our minds so that the shock of sudden change is diminished. Rinpoche then offers detailed guidance on how to skillfully process sudden changes when they occur. He teaches us that by working with sudden change in these ways, it is possible to see and seize the opportunities for positive transformation that manifest in the context of change and transition.

Even planned changes such as marriage, retirement, seeking education, and finding a job come with challenges and transition. Rinpoche provides guidance for negotiating planned changes, including preparing for the reality that planned changes do not always go the way we anticipate.

We learn that the key to working with all forms of change lies in our ability to remain present in every moment. Meditation provides the training we need to maintain present awareness.

Feel free to drop by, even if you have missed earlier sessions.

(except not Feb. 4 or 18)
DOORS OPEN: 6:30 pm
MEDITATION: 6:45 pm to 7:15 pm
DVD SCREENING & DISCUSSION: 7:30 pm to approx. 8:45
Suggested donation: $5 or what you can afford - no one turned away
Open to all - drop-ins and newcomers are welcome, even if you have missed previous sessions!

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Chenrezig (Avalokiteshvara) & Mahakala Practice

Thursdays (7:30 pm to 9 pm)

@ Maitrivana, 4610 Earles Street, Vancouver
By donation - Newcomers welcome

Nalandabodhi Vancouver invites you to join us in practicing Chenrezig (Avalokiteshvara) and Mahakala practice every Thursday evening.

These are traditional practices chanted in Tibetan, led by our resident Lama, Lama Rabten Tshering.*

CHENREZIG (Avalokiteshvara) is the Buddha of Compassion. Practicing Chenrezig helps one to develop bodhicitta (loving kindness) towards all sentient beings.

MAHAKALA is a protector deity for the Karma Kagyu Lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. Practicing Mahakala helps to pacify obstacles for oneself and others.

7:30 pm - 8:30 pm: Chenrezig
8:30 pm - 9:00 pm: Mahakala

By donation ($5 suggested donation, or what you can afford; no one turned away for lack of funds). For more information, contact vancouver@nalandabodhi.ca or phone 604 675 9282.

Open to everyone - newcomers are most welcome.

*If Lama Rabten is away, then this practice is led by senior Chenrezig & Mahakala practitioners.

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Community Practice Day & Potluck

Sunday, Mar. 31

@ Maitrivana, 4610 Earles Street, Vancouver

Community Practice Day is open to alll. This month features Tara Practice (10 am til 11:45 am). Therafter, partake of a vegetarian potluck lunch (12 to 1 pm): a chance to connect with others, ask questions, and chow down on the goodness of sangha.

Tara is a powerful practice that helps to dispel obstacles and fears. As Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche says, "If you are a person who has entered and is practicing the path, then supplicating Tara helps dispel all obstacles that get in the way of making your practice fruitional. Tara also clears away obstacles of all those with whom we have connections: our friends, our relatives, our partners . . . anyone for whom we wish that they be free of illness, negative spirits, and other obstacles. When you supplicate Tara you will receive her blessing."

Tara Practice: 10 am to noon
Vegetarian potluck lunch: noon - 1 pm

Everyone is welcome, including newcomers. By donation. Feel free to pass this message along.

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Rinpoche visits his Guru in Nepal

A Message from The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche

Dear Sangha Friends,

DPR in Nepal

I recently had the great fortune to visit and spend time with my guru Khenpo Rinpoche at Tek Chok Ling in Kathmandu, Nepal. Rinpoche is doing very well and he is cheerful and happy to see students and give teachings. I, along with six other students arrived in Kathmandu on November 16. We had daily audiences with Rinpoche in the morning and received profound instructions in doha form. Students also had the chance to ask questions and Rinpoche answered them perfectly in doha verses, just as before. With his instructions, we also sang and danced as before. Rinpoche gave further instructions on how to dance. Rinpoche is also teaching the nuns occasionally and we were so lucky to have Rinpoche at one of the evening Tara dance practices of the nuns. As requested by the head nuns during my stay at Tek Chok Ling, and with the permission of Rinpoche, I taught the nuns on various topics, including Khenpo Rinpoche's guru yoga that was written by the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa. Rinpoche spends his time resting in the nature of mind retreat when he isn't seeing students or engaging with his close disciples and personal staff. I also met many of Rinpoche's disciples from the east and the west. They were also enjoying the true presence and instructions of our beloved father guru, who is the Buddha in person for us. As always, Rinpoche continues to manifest as a very spontaneous, unconventional, and uncompromising true vajra guru. His true, attachment-free love and compassion for beings is shining as brightly as ever with the sharp wisdom of his Buddha mind.


I was extremely happy to see the completion of the new nunnery, Tek Chok Ling and the Dhondrup Guesthouse. It was beautifully designed by an American architect named Lama Tenzin. The construction was directed by Chime Dorje, the son of Rinpoche's late general secretary, Karma Dargye. The nunnery is maintained and overseen beautifully by the Ani Lopon, Jampa Chozom. Rinpoche is served and cared for deeply by the nuns and his personal attendant and secretary Tsepak Dorje, another son of Rinpoche's late general secretary. Rinpoche is enjoying his presence there and is in good hands.

I wanted to share this cheerful news with all my dharma brothers and sisters of the lineage. Here are some pictures and A Dreamlike Song of Appearance-Emptiness which I had the fortune to write down. Please enjoy and continue to serve our lineage and our guru, Vajradhara Dechen Rangdrol.

With love,

Download A Dreamlike Song of Appearance-Emptiness (PDF)

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Nalandabodhi Vancouver's Dharma Centre, Maitrivana (Sanskrit: "Garden of Loving Kindness"; pronounced my-tree-vana), is open to the public. All are welcome. Having completed our renovations (started in March 2007) and successfully acquiring a Certificate of Occupancy from the City of Vancouver (November 2007), we are fully permitted and equipped to host public programs.

Please visit our Calendar to see what kind of teaching, meditation, and study programs Nalandabodhi has to offer in the coming months.

Group Photo at Maitrivana
Lhabab Duchen 2007: First group photo taken in Maitrivana's new and completed shrineroom.

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Artwork by His Holiness The 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Orgyen Drudul Trinley Dorje

Nalandabodhi, as a registered non-profit organization in Canada, provides high calibre Dharma study and practice opportunities to the greater community, at very nominal or no cost. We fundamentally believe that the teachings of the Buddha should be free!

However, being part of the material world, we must also meet our financial obligations, just like any other householder, including the mortgage for our new Dharma centre, Matirivana (The Garden of Loving Kindness).

Help us help others! If you happen to like what we do and what we have to offer the community, we have a very special way of enabling you to support us. To our great fortune, His Holiness The 17th Gyalwang Karmapa gifted Nalandabodhi with original artwork to aid our financial sustainability projects. We have made the highest quality fine art reproductions of this artwork and we're "selling" these limited edition reproductions to the public as way of generating financial support for our activities.

His Holiness Karmapa's Calligraphy
Note: watermarks do not appear on the originals

In the Tibetan tradition of Buddhism, The Karmapa is regarded as a very high spiritual figure, much like His Holiness The Dalai Lama.

One of the best ways you can help Nalandabodhi is to purchase one of these Limited edition reproductions. All the funds generated by these art sales will go towards supporting Nalandabodhi with its Maitrivana project costs (i.e. renovation and ongoing mortgage costs). By purchasing one of His Holiness' artwork reproductions you not only support Nalandbodhi's activities, but you also take home a beautiful piece of spiritual artwork. To view samples and for more details click here.

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