Northwest Dharma Association



Northwest Dharma News

A Quarterly Online Publication
Fall 2017, Volume 30, #3

Lots to Celebrate, as NWDA Opens New Doors Letter from the President and Executive Director

Northwest Dharma Association brings people from many traditions together in harmony, as it has for many years. This photo is of the 2005 Change Your Mind Day celebration, in Seattle’s Volunteer Park.

Everything changes…so the Buddha said. A cold winter becomes a wet spring becomes a dry summer. Northwest Dharma Association is changing too. We’re building inclusive communities, partnering with contemplative caregivers, co-sponsoring the international Buddhist Recovery Summit in October. And of course we maintain our online directory and calendar of Buddhist organizations and their events, across Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, and…

For the First Time, Washington Prison Inmates To Teach Mindfulness to Others Behind Bars

Nate, second from right, leads a mindful movement exercise, a component of every class.

Four Washington state prison inmates are making history by becoming the first inmates certified to teach Path of Freedom, an emotional intelligence program based on mindfulness meditation. As certified trainers the four are starting to teach the 12-week curriculum to other men behind bars. The Path of Freedom program was developed by the Massachusetts-based Prison Mindfulness Institute. These enthusiastic and…

Washington Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal Visits With Tibetan Community at Sakya Monastery

Abbot of Sakya Monastery Khenpo Jampa Tenphel, Congresswoman Jayapal and her husband, spinning prayer wheels outside the monastery.

U.S. Representative Pramila Jayapal made a rare visit to Seattle’s Sakya Monastery of Tibetan Buddhism in June, responding to an invitation from the local Tibetan community. Congresswoman Jayapal, a member of the Democratic Party, is the first Indian-American woman to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives, the first woman to represent the 7th District in Congress, and the first…

Vancouver Shambhala Finds New Home Despite Fast-Rising Real Estate Prices

Practicing in the main shrine room: First row Zachariah Finley, Jerry Chapman, Sandy Brooks; second row Paul Belserene, Maria Stella; third row Mariel Gomez, Rolf Erni, Chantal Latendresse; fourth row Nicholas Talloni, Gabriel Latendresse.

We knew it was coming. The specter of homelessness for The Vancouver Shambhala Center was just over the horizon. Our mission statement is to Wake Up! We weren’t caught sleepwalking. Sensing an uncertain future we formed a group six months before we received the notice that our lease would not be renewed. The Vancouver, British Columbia building we were in,…

In India, Seattle Lama Presents on Links Between African Americans’ and Untouchables’ Experience

Martin Luther King III, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, Nobel Laureate Kailash Satyarthi, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and others, during the inauguration of the Dr B R Ambedkar International Conference 2017.

Lama Choyin Rangdrol, a Seattle-based African American lama of Tibetan Buddhism, traveled to India in July as an invited presenter to the B.R. Ambedkar International Conference in Bangalore, India. Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar, an important figure in India’s history in many ways, is best known among Buddhists for his mass conversion of hundreds of thousands of Indian people to Buddhism. Ambedkar…

Featured Events

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Buddhist Paths: Women’s Choices

Fifth Annual Women in Buddhism Conference presented by the Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple September 23, 2017 – 9:30-3:30 A day devoted to understanding the place of Buddhism in our everyday lives – Buddhist Paths: Women’s Choices with featured speakers Rev. Carol Himaka, Resident Minister Southern Alameda County Buddhist Church on The 35th Vow of Dharmakara/Amida Buddha and its meaning to…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple

Date: Saturday, September 23
Time: 9:30 am - 3:30 pm
Event Type:

Tradition: True Pure Land
Teacher: Master Shinran

The ground from which the path arises: From youth to aging, sickness and death

The beauty and joy of awakening, complete peace and release, do not come from a life of comfort and complacency. They arise out of directly facing the toughest challenges of human life. In this retreat we will explore the territory of deep life experiences, the wake-up calls, beginning in our youth. We will draw upon the tools the Buddha gave…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Bellingham Insight Meditation Society

Start: Monday, October 9 @ 5:00 pm
End: Sunday, October 15 @ 12:00 pm
Event Type: ,

Tradition: Vipassana
Teacher: Ayya Santussikka

Roots of Mindfulness: A 7-Day Silent Retreat

The Roots of Mindfulness: a week of extended Mindfulness Practice exploring the theme Beginner’s Mind. Join us for a full week-long retreat of mindfulness practices in the style of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) at a beautiful retreat site in the Skagit Valley (roughly 90 minutes north of Seattle and 2 hours south of Vancouver, BC). The retreat will be a deep…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Mindfulness Northwest

Start: Sunday, October 15 @ 4:00 pm
End: Sunday, October 22 @ 12:00 pm
Event Type: , ,

Tradition: MBSR, Zen
Teacher: Tim Burnett

Buddhist Recovery Summit 2017

Buddhist teachers and leaders are developing innovative practices that support recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. The Buddhist Recovery Network and the Northwest Dharma Assoication are bringing these leaders together in a working retreat in Lacey Washington in October 2017. While the retreat is invitation-only, you can participate in several ways. We are raising money to help cover the costs of bringing…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Northwest Dharma Association

Start: Friday, October 20 @ 5:00 pm
End: Sunday, October 22 @ 2:00 pm
Event Type: ,

Tradition: Non-sectarian

Becoming Tara with Anne Carolyn Klein, Portland

 We practice Tārā to become her. This weekend retreat is for immersing ourselves in the blessings and vision of Tārā and to find Tārā’s pure land right with us in Portland. We sing and imagine in chantable English and Tibetan the poetic simplicity of Adzom Drukpa’s Tārā practice, from his famous Secret Luminous Vajra Treasury. We call this retreat a…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Samden Ling

Start: Friday, October 20 @ 7:00 pm
End: Sunday, October 22 @ 3:00 pm
Event Type:

Tradition: Tibetan
Teacher: Anne Carolyn Klein/Rigzin Drolma

Celebrating the Sangha

The Northwest Buddhist community is huge, and diverse, encompassing traditional temples from every Buddhist culture, modern practice and study groups, and creative applications of Buddhist perspectives by health professionals, teachers, social activists, and others. NWDA invites you to explore our shared aspirations as Buddhists and contemplative practitioners. We’ll engage in large and small group discussion to strengthen our individual and…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Northwest Dharma Association

Date: Saturday, November 11
Time: 9:00 am - 9:00 pm
Event Type: ,

Tradition: Non-sectarian

Rainbow of Infinite Light: LGBTQ and Shin Buddhism

Date:          Saturday, November 18th, 2017 Time:         10 am – 4 pm (check in begins at 9:15 am) Location:  Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple, 1427 S. Main Street, Seattle, WA 98144 Ticket Price:  $40 (Students $20) which includes a box lunch (vegetarian option available) Please register by November 8th at The Buddhist Churches…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Seattle Betsuin Buddhist Temple

Date: Saturday, November 18
Time: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Event Type:

Tradition: Jodo Shinshu
Teacher: Rev. Katsuya Kusunoki


Calendar of Events

Spokane: Ven. Chodron at UU

Sustaining Hope Through Social Action Ven. Thubten Chodron is the UU Sunday speaker Two Sunday Services  9:15 & 11:00 “The opposite of love is not hate, it is indifference.” Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel knew what he was talking about. But how do we stay engaged and hopeful in challenging times? Venerable Thubten Chodron asserts there is no room for despair in…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Sravasti Abbey

Date: Sunday, October 29
Time: 9:15 am - 12:00 pm

Tradition: Tibetan
Teacher: Ven. Thubten Chodron

Weekend Retreat w/ Christina Feldman

Each day of this retreat begins at 9:00 am and ends at 4:30 pm. Christina Feldman is a co-founder and guiding teacher of Gaia House in England (, and has been leading Insight Meditation retreats since 1976. She is a guiding teacher of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts. As well as teaching retreats worldwide, she is committed to…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Seattle Insight Meditation Society

Start: Saturday, October 21 @ 9:00 am
End: Sunday, October 22 @ 4:30 pm
Event Type: ,

Tradition: Vipassana
Teacher: Christina Feldman

New Year’s Non-Residential Retreat

Welcome in the New Year with reflection and introspection at a week-end non-residential retreat at the Pine Street Sangha. At retreats there is ample time for sitting meditation, silent reflection, dharma talks and group discussion. New perspectives are discovered in interviews. Non-residential retreats are low cost, while offering an in-depth experience. Local participants can sleep in the comfort of their…

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Pine Street Sangha

Start: Friday, December 29 @ 6:30 pm
End: Sunday, December 31 @ 3:30 pm
Event Type:

Tradition: Vipassana
Teacher: Nelly Kaufer

Spokane UU: Buddhist Meditation

Nuns from Sravasti Abbey offer a weekly meditation and Dharma discussion course drawn from the book, Working with Anger. The course is practical, the group is welcoming, and the discussion is lively. Drop-ins welcomed. Books are available, but not necessary to join in. There is no charge and donations are welcomed.

Mahasangha Event

Member Group: Sravasti Abbey

Date: Monday, October 23
Time: 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Tradition: Tibetan

Go to the main calendar page!

What's Happening

Buddhist Global Relief 2017 Walks to Feed the Hungry

Buddhist Global Relief’s Walks to Feed the Hungry will take place in Seattle (Sept 30) and Portland (October 21). Join us for fun and fellowship as we raise money to support Buddhist Global Relief projects around the world!

More >

Khenpo Kartin in Portland & Trout Lake

Sept. 9-11 at at the NWTCA Bodkhang in Portland OR

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Buddhist Recovery Summit

There is addiction to indulgence of sense-pleasures, which is low, coarse, the way of ordinary people, unworthy, and unprofitable; and there is addiction to self-mortification, which is painful, unworthy, and unprofitable. Avoiding both these extremes, the Tathagata (The Perfect One) has realized the Middle Path; it gives vision, gives knowledge, and leads to calm, to insight, to enlightenment and to Nibbana.

More >

Group Members

Chagdud Gonpa Amrita

Chagdud Gonpa Amrita is the Seattle branch of Chagdud Gonpa Foundation. Since 1983, it has provided a place for beginning students and long-time practitioners to gather for teachings and practice in the Nyingma lineage of Tibetan Buddhism.

Tradition: Tibetan || Location: Edmonds, WA

Dharma Rain Zen Center

DRZC is a diverse group of people who come together to share the practice of meditation, and to study the principles of Buddhism. The purpose of the Center is to offer instruction in Zen practice and Buddhist teachings, and to provide a place where people can form a community that supports Zen practice in everyday life.

Tradition: Zen || Location: Portland, OR

1Open Heart

We practice loving kindness and mindfulness meditation followed by Dharma learning and discussion. If you provide your e-mail address we can keep you on the distribution list.

Tradition: Theravada || Location: Shoreline, WA

Go to the Group Directory page for more!