The holdings of the Shambhala Archives

The holdings of the Shambhala Archives include a large selection of video, photographic, and audio materials, as well as documents, books, manuscripts, calligraphies, and other physical objects. These holdings include many of the teachings of Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche; as well as the teachings of many other Buddhist teachers, and oral histories of their students.

 

1988.287.002The Shambhala Archives has approximately 50,000 images in its photo collection. The majority were taken between 1963 and 1988, in the analogue universe of negatives, prints, and transparencies. A small number of these have been converted to digital images. We are in the process of converting several thousand images to digital files, in order to provide online access to parts of our collection.

The majority of the photographs in the Archives relate to the life and teachings of the founder of Shambhala, the Vidyadhara the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. The original Information Office of Vajradhatu had around 20,000 photographs that relate to Trungpa Rinpoche’s activities. These were transferred to the Archives after his death in 1987. The Vidyadhara’s family has donated many family photos as well as his personal photos to the Archives. In addition, several photographers have donated large collections of material related to the life and teachings of the Vidyadhara. We are grateful to all the photographers and welcome the donation and/or bequest of personal and professional collections.

Please visit our photograph portfolio!

 

The holdings of the Shambhala Archives includes more than:

  • IMGP0063_00010,000 Audio Cassettes
  • 3,500 Audio Reels
  • 3,000 Video Cassettes
  • 4,500 CD and other optical media
  • 2,500 high resolution digital audio files

 

History

In 1970, upon his arrival in North America and commencing teaching in the summer, the Vidyadhara, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche specified that all his lectures be recorded on audio tape. In the following few years he created the Department of Vajradhatu Recordings within the overall Vajradhatu organization, to ensure that the teachings by lineage holders within the Vajradhatu mandala were documented, recorded and preserved. As the Audio Fonds of the Shambhala Archives details, eventually over 2400 audio recordings were accumulated of his various teachings and presentations.

The Shambhala Archives is the storage and preservation facility for these teachings, having been transferred from Vajradhatu Recordings, now Kalapa Recordings in the late 1980s. The teachings are catalogued into a database that acts as a resource for the sangha in locating information on specific talks.  Kalapa Recordings continues its responsibility for managing the documentation of the teachings of the current lineage holder, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, senior Acharyas, and visiting teachers.

Making these materials available to students and dharma centers is a shared responsibility. Audio, video, and books in print and electronic form are published and available through Kalapa Publications. Online classes and streaming delivery of video and audio is provided through Shambhala Online

Principal among our on-going projects in the Archives is the Audio Recovery Program. As detailed in a report by PHD student Cynthia Cochran, in 2006, the ARP project began the initial migration to digital formats of the analog audio holdings of Trungpa Rinpoche in the Archives. This digitization work continues as we turn to the teachings on analog tape of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, and those of visiting teachers, reaching back into the 1970s.

These teachings include:

  • 2,400 talks by Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche
  • 1,000 talks by Sakyong Jamgon Mipham, Rinpoche
  • 1,000 talks by the Vajra Regent Osel Tendzin
  • 700 talks by Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso, Rinpoche
  • His Holiness the XVIth Gyalwa Karmapa
  • His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
  • His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche
  • His Holiness the Dalai Lama
  • His Eminence Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche
  • His Eminence Shamar Rinpoche
  • His Eminence Situ Rinpoche
  • His Eminence Tenga Rinpoche
  • Ven. Khandro Rinpoche
  • Ven. Ponlop Rinpoche
  • Suzuki Roshi
  • Maezumi Roshi
  • Pema Chödrön
  • Allan Ginsberg
  • Alan Watts
  • The Nalanda Translation Group

Digital Audio  

Since the mid-2000s centers have been recording to a digital audio formats  Digitally recording in full resolution .aiff, .wav, .au, or other lossless audio file formats is the standard specified through the Shambhala International Policy for documenting dharma talks. After each teaching program a set of files on a hard-drive goes to the Shambhala Archives, where they are backed up to a server for storage and further access. These procedures for documenting teachings in audio and video formats, and stewarding them in digital formats  are on-going through the combined work of Kalapa Recordings, Centre East Productions and the Shambhala Archives. 

Audio Recovery Project

Project History –

written by Cynthia L. Cochran, May 1, 2006

photographs taken 2007-2008

The ARP was first proposed in 1996. The equipment and methodologies employed have evolved over the subsequent nine years as technological advances offered better solutions. All aspects of the digitization process have been, and continue to be, handled by SA staff, utilizing equipment purchased and funded by SA. Over these ten years, project protocols have included the use of a Sony PCM digital audiotape recorder to digitize and record to VHS videotapes; migrating to new analog reels and type IV metal cassette tapes; digitizing and recording to audio CD-Rs, DVD-Rs, and to hard drives, configured in a redundant array of inexpensive discs (RAID), which provide two terabytes of storage on a computer server (Levy, email to author, 24 April 2006). Link to the full article below:

http://www.shambhalaarchives.org/audio-recovery-project/

This link is to the more technical specs of the project:
Download the Audio Recovery Implementation Plan (Downloads a .pdf file on click).

 

Video Recordings of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche

1988.287.001

The video recordings of Chögyam Trungpa are a precious resource. For many students, the ability to see him presenting the teachings is very powerful.

Of the collection of 261 early B/W videos, over 80% is now converted to professional digital video formats—best for preservation. Although a relatively small collection of material, the video recordings are extremely important. All of the seminars given by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in the first three years of Naropa University (1974 -1976), were recorded on black and white video, and the material is in excellent condition. The Video Recovery Project was the first preservation project undertaken by Archives staff. Between 1992 and 1995, over 200 of these video tapes were copied to more robust analog formats. Half of the converted videos have since been published as DVDs with study guides for classes.

Additionally, there are other early seminars given in Boulder, Colorado and at Karme‐Choling in Vermont, and a small number of talks at other locations, including two seminars in California. A detailed archival level description of this fonds is found further down. A number of these seminars have also been published and are available through Kalapa Media.

The color video collection, which is about one third of the whole, includes two Shambhala Training public talks, a seminar on visual dharma from 1978, a vajra assembly conducted by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and a number of other ceremonies and talks.

The further migration of the Archives’ video collection began with equipment being funded by the Shambhala Trust in the early 2000s. Playback/capture of the VRP videos into DV25 video format files enabled the Archives’ staff to begin migration of the entire analog video collection into industry recognized digital file storage and then publishing in DVD format. Today these files are also beginning to make their way to the online library of Shambhala Online for streamable access.

All of these digital files, (audio and video), are stored on RAIDs (bundled hard-drive servers), a storage protocol of choice for audio-visual collections. Our continued digital migration activity necessitates the need to acquire more RAID servers. We also hope to acquire a linear tape-drive system to provide additional backup support. This system would ensure additional  redundancy.

Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche ~ Born-Digital Storage

Most of the data we need to back up now includes born-digital media files, the best example being the teachings of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. His teachings have been recorded digitally since 2005 (through Kalapa Recordings and affiliates at all teaching programs), and stored in original digital form on our hard-drive servers. Our holdings of Sakyong Mipham comprise over 15 Terabytes (15,000 GB) of audio and video files.

Here is an example of how our digital storage is organized:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please feel free to browse our online video offerings here!

 

The VCTR Collection is a treasury of the belongings of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, consisting of several thousand objects. It includes robes and religious relics that he hand-carried out of Tibet, as well as many objects—both secular and religious—that he purchased or received as gifts. It is traditional for students to maintain these belongings as sacred objects, viewing them as revealing the enlightened activity of the teacher.

In his will, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche stated,

“The monumental objects should be cherished and kept. The household articles should be treated as special…. I have never conducted myself frivolously, so all my collections should be regarded as objects of learning.”

15SEALS-CASE-WEBDuring his lifetime and for several years after Rinpoche’s death, close students who were personal attendants of the Vidyadhara were the caretakers of these objects. In the mid 1990s, responsibility for the Collection was transferred to the Shambhala Archives and has been maintained by the Archives through the donation of time and funds by students of the Vidyadhara. Some of them can be viewed here. 

The inventory and appraisal of all the artifacts is complete and all are safely stored in new boxes. All of the objects have been photographed, cataloged, described and entered into our database, a museum quality software.

Much remains to be done. Many items need additional archival quality storage, and treatment by a professional art conservator. Funds for an environmental control system for the storage space is critical. At present the Collection is kept in the Relics Room at the Shambhala Archives, where it is looked after by the Archives staff. But the temperature and humidity in the storage room is not currently controlled by a reliable system. This situation puts the Collection into jeopardy, since environmental control is critical to protecting it from deterioration.

Last summer, 2016, we began a reorganization of the storage space to facilitate requests for exhibits, like the Great Eastern Sun Exhibit, Halifax, NS.


Every year on April 4 the Archives displays the personal belongings of VCTR for people who come to the Centre in Halifax for Parinirvana Day.

Here are some photos of those through the years:

Parinirvana 2014-5-6 exhibits
Great Eastern Sun Exhibit Article
Parinirvana 2012 exhibit, Halifax Shambhala Centre:

PHOTOGRAPHS — Fonds Level Description

Fonds for the Photographic Holding

Scope and Content

The fonds consists of extensive photographic documentation of various activities of the founder of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation, Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche, and members of his family; of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin, who acted as the spiritual successor of Trungpa Rinpoche from 1976 to 1990, and members of his family; of numerous events sponsored by and participated in by Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation; of visits to North America by His Holiness the Sixteenth Gyalwa Karmapa, head of the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism; of activities of a number of important Tibetan Buddhist teachers, as well as teachers of Zen and other traditions; of the major residential practice and educational centers established by Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation; of exhibitions and demonstrations sponsored by Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation on the visual arts; and of the work of a specific photographers.

A small series of administrative records provides some information on the original order of the photographs and their care and preservation during the existence of the office. Additionally, there is a description, probably created in the 1980’s, of the entire body of records of the Information Office.

The fonds contains approximately 19,500 photographic images, as well as a small amount of textual and other graphic materials. The photographic images include black and white prints and negatives; color prints, negatives and contact sheets; transparencies; and one reel of microfilm.

The fonds is arranged into fifteen series, listed below.
1/A. Photographs of Vidyadhara the Venerable ChogyamTrungpa, Rinpoche
1/B. Photographs of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin
1/C. Photographs of His Holiness Rangjung Rigpe Dorje, the Sixteenth Gyalwa Karmapa
1/D. Photographs of His Holiness Dingo Khyentse Rinpoche
1/E. Photographs of His Holiness the Dalai Lama
1/F. Photographs of other Tibetan teachers
1/G. Photographs of other Buddhist teachers
1/H. Photographs of events, celebrations and people
1/J. Photographs of properties, places
1/K. Photographs of art
1/L. Photographs of Dharma Art seminars and related events
1/M. Photographs by specific photographers
1/N. Oversized materials
1/O. Administrative records
1/P. Microfilm of Tibetan painted scrolls

Notes
Title based on contents of the fonds. Restoration of original order in the fonds was carried out with the assistance of three former staff members of the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office: Jane Hester, Miriam Garrett, and Liza Matthews.
Access to portions of the fonds is by permission as noted in the relevant series descriptions.
Permission to reproduce and publish photographs in the fonds may be subject to copyright restrictions.
A full inventory of the fonds is included in the finding aid, as well as a guide to the numbering system and abbreviations used in the fonds.

Associated material having the same provenance:
See also: Vajradhatu and Nalanda Information Office administrative records fonds
No further accruals are expected.
Related groups of records in different fonds: See also Andrea Craig Roth photographic fonds; Karme-Choling photographic fonds; Vajradhatu Recordings audiotape fonds; Vajradhatu Editorial Department transcript fonds.

Administrative History
Date of Founding:
The Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information office was established by resolution of the Nalanda Foundation Board of Directors at a meeting on August 15, 1975.

Mandate/Sphere of Functional Responsibility
The mandate of the Information Office encompassed advertising, publicity, and public relations. In the area of advertising, the Office produced and reviewed the content of all advertisements, flyers, posters, mailings, and brochures of all divisions of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation. Assistance in the preparation of these materials was routinely provided to the various divisions of those organizations. Information as to the effects of advertising was collected and analyzed and made available to these divisions. The Information Office engaged in publicity through direct contacts with media and other public relations agencies. The Office was also responsible for writing, and providing editorial assistance in writing, publicity brochures and other material intended for public dissemination, to all divisions of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation. The Office engaged in public relations work by overseeing communications with members of the public in order to further an understanding of the activities of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation. In support of all of these activities, the Office maintained photographic files of all major activities of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation. In 1978 Vajradhatu founded the Vajradhatu Sun, a bi-monthly publication of buddhist news, and placed its management under the Information Office. In the course of its production, the Sun made extensive use of these photographic files.

Administrative Relationships
From its creation in 1975 until 1977, the Information Office was under the direction of an Information Officer, Joshua K. Zim. Beginning in 1977, the activities of the Office were brought under the supervision of Karl G. Springer, a member of the Boards of Directors of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation in charge of the external affairs of both organizations. That same year, two assistant information officers were named: Eric Weiss for Vajradhatu and Miriam Garrett for Nalanda Foundation. In 1980, Mrs. Garrett succeeded to the post of chief information officer, and continued in that position until the closure of the office in 1988. Administrative Structure Vajradhatu, an international organization of Buddhist meditation and study centers, and Nalanda Foundation, an educational foundation, were founded in 1973 and 1975, respectively, by the Ven. Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche. At the time of creation of the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Information Office, the Boards of Directors of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation were composed of the same individuals, and the organizations regularly held its board meetings concurrently and, when appropriate, created joint administrative structures, as in the case of the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office.

Current Address of Shambhala International ( Formerly the Vajradhatu Buddhist Church)
1084 Tower Road
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3H 2Y5 Canada

Custodial History
During 1985 and 1986, the international headquarters of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation were relocated from Boulder, Colorado to Halifax, Nova Scotia. The photographic files of the Information Office, however, remained in Boulder but were transferred to the custody of the Vajradhatu Sun, where they remained until early in 1988. At that time, the Information Office was closed and the photographic files were transferred to the custody of the Archives.

AUDIO — Fonds Level Description

Nalanda Foundation Fonds

[sound recordings]. — June 3, 1970- June 13, 1984. — ca. 122 audio cassettes and 82 audio reels

On January 18, 1974, Nalanda Foundation, a nonprofit educational corporation, was established in Boulder, Colorado, by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Nalanda Foundation is named after Nalanda University, a center of Buddhist learning which flourished in India from the fifth to twelfth centuries. In addition to Shambhala Training and Naropa Institute, divisions of Nalanda Foundation have included the Alaya preschool, the Vidya elementary school, the Maitri space awareness project, the Mudra theatre group, and the Nalanda and Vajravairocana translation committees. It has also sponsored a number of groups organized for the study and practice of the traditional Japanese arts of flower arranging, kyudo (archery), and tea ceremony; and Amara, an association of health professionals.

Nalanda Foundation of Canada was established on March 31, 1983, for the purpose of establishing the Shambhala Training Program and a Naropa Institute project in Canada. The foundation began moving its international headquarters from Boulder to Halifax in 1985. Since late 1992, together with Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches also founded by Trungpa Rinpoche, Nalanda Foundation has been doing business under the name “Shambhala” at 1084 Tower Road, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Trungpa Rinpoche acted as president of the foundation until his death in 1987. He was succeeded by the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin until his death in 1990. The current president of the foundation is Trungpa Rinpoche’s eldest son, the Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.

Sound recordings of Nalanda Foundation activities were created or acquired by and retained in the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings in Boulder, Colorado, a department of Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Vajradhatu Recordings recorded Nalanda Foundation events pursuant to its policy of creating a permanent record of the teaching and administrative activities of Trungpa Rinpoche and other principal teachers and administrators of the Nalanda Foundation and its divisions. Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) retained custody of these sound recordings until their transfer to the Vajradhatu Archives in 1989. Fonds consists of sound recordings of a broad range of activities of Nalanda Foundation, including general administrative activities; public talks and seminars on dharma art; activities of the Mudra theatre group; activities related to the Maitri project; and meetings of and events sponsored by a number of other special interest groups within the foundation. All of these activities were conducted or presided over by its founder and president, the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, or his successor the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin, or other principal teachers and administrators.

The fonds is arranged in the following series: 1. Administration 2. Alaya preschool 3. Amara association of health professionals 4. Dharma art event 5. Film 6. Kalapa Cha 7. Kalapa Ikebana 8. Kyudo 9. Maitri project 10. Mudra theatre group 11. Shambhala School of Dressage 12. Vidya elementary school.

Title based on contents of the fonds. Extent includes duplicates. Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration. As a conservation measure a number of audio reels have been exercised and copied to both digital and high-quality cassette formats. Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director. Inventories accompany series descriptions.

For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.
Related materials may be in the custody of The Naropa Institute. Further accruals are expected. Videocassette recordings related to portions of the fonds exist and are described in a finding aid for the Vajradhatu Archives Video Recovery Project.
Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche fonds; the Vajradhatu fonds; the Vajradhatu Seminary fonds; the Naropa Institute events fonds; the Shambhala Training events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds.

An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.

Naropa Institute Events Fonds

[sound recordings]. — June, 1974-July 26, 1985. — ca. 205 audio reels and 190 audio cassettes.

The Naropa Institute is a private, non-profit liberal arts college located in Boulder, Colorado, offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in the arts, social sciences and humanities. The institute was founded in 1974 as a division of the Nalanda Foundation, a non-profit, nonsectarian educational organization, by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, who envisioned a university that would combine contemplative studies with traditional Western scholastic and artistic disciplines. The Naropa Institute is modeled on Nalanda University, a Buddhist institution of scholastic and contemplative disciplines which flourished in India from the fifth to the twelfth centuries. It takes its name from Naropa, the eleventh-century abbot of Nalanda University and a renowned Buddhist scholar, teacher and practitioner.

When the institute opened in the summer of 1974, its program of studies, expected to draw 300 to 400 participants, attracted 1,800 students and eighty faculty. Over 100 courses and workshops were offered in Eastern and Western traditions of meditation, philosophy, psychology, poetry, creative writing, theater, dance, music, and visual arts. Faculty have included well-known figures such as Allen Ginsberg, John Cage, Gregory Bateson, R. D. Laing, Anne Waldman, Harvey Cox, William Burroughs, and Herbert Guenther, among many others. Trungpa Rinpoche acted as president of the institute from 1974 to 1985. That year the institute was reorganized as a separate non-profit educational corporation under the direction of a board of trustees, of which Trungpa Rinpoche was an ex-officio member until his death in 1987.

In 1980 the institute appointed its first dean, Judith Lief, who was succeeded in 1985 by Chancellor Barbara Dilley. After Trungpa Rinpoche’s death in 1987, the title of president became available, and in 1989 the title of chancellor was changed to reflect that. The current president of the institute is John W. Cobb. The institute received accreditation from the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools in 1986. On July 25, 1990 the institute formally reasserted its original name, “The Naropa Institute.” Its current address is 2130 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder, Colorado, 80302-6697.

The sound recordings in the fonds were maintained in the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings in Boulder, Colorado, until their acquisition by the Archives in 1989. Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) is a department of Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. The fonds consists of sound recordings created or acquired by Vajradhatu Recordings pursuant to its policy of creating a permanent record of the teaching and administrative activities of the Venerable Trungpa Rinpoche and other principal teachers and administrators of the Nalanda Foundation and its divisions. Included are recordings of academic and administrative events presided over or conducted by Trungpa Rinpoche or his successor, the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin, and by other noted teachers, scholars or artists.

The fonds is arranged in the following series:
Administrative activity
Public talk or seminar
Special event, workshop or conference
Summer session founder’s course
Title based on contents of the fonds.
Extent includes duplicates.
Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration.

Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director.
Inventories accompany series descriptions. For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.
Related materials may be found in the Naropa Institute Allen Ginsberg Library.
Further accruals are expected. Videocassette recordings related to portions of the fonds exist and are described in a finding aid for the Vajradhatu Archives Video Recovery Project.

Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche fonds; the Vajradhatu fonds; the Vajradhatu Seminary fonds; the Nalanda Foundation fonds; the Shambhala Training events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds.

An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.

Vajradhatu Seminary Fonds

[sound recordings]. — September 27, 1973- August 25, 1990. — ca. 666 audio cassettes and 340 audio reels

The Vajradhatu Seminary was founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche as a program of advanced training in Buddhist study and meditation practice. The tradition of intensive periods of study and practice goes back to the time of the Buddha, who instituted a three-month retreat during the Indian monsoon season. In the epilogue to his autobiography, “Born in Tibet” (London: Unwin Hyman Ltd., 1987), Trungpa Rinpoche says, “As students became more completely involved with practice and study, I felt there was a need for more advanced training in the tradition of Jamgön Köngtrul the Great and of the Kagyü contemplative order. A situation was needed in which a systematic and thorough presentation of the dharma could be made. Accordingly, I initiated the annual Vajradhatu Seminary, a three-month intensive practice and study retreat for mature students . . . Periods of all-day sitting meditation alternated with a study programme methodically progressing through the three yanas of Buddhist teaching: hinayana, mahayana and vajrayana.”

The programs were offered by Vajradhatu, an international organization of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by Trungpa Rinpoche, but their size and scope necessitated separate administrative staffs and faculty. Admission was by application, with final approval at the discretion of the presiding teacher. In addition to teaching the main class, the presiding teacher customarily performed traditional Buddhist ceremonies, convened meetings of teachers, meditation instructors and administrators, and presided at social occasions. The curriculum also included additional required and elective courses taught by senior students. At the conclusion of the program, participants could request permission to begin the preliminary practices [Tibetan: “ngondro”] of the vajrayana. Trungpa Rinpoche presided over the first seminary in 1973 and twelve subsequent seminaries, held annually except in 1977 and 1987.

After his death in 1987, the program continued under the direction of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin in 1988 and 1990, and the Sawang Ösel Mukpo (now Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche) in 1992 and 1994. The originals and all copies of the sound recordings produced at Vajradhatu Seminaries were transferred, at the conclusion of each program, to the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings, a department of Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in Boulder, Colorado. No copies, other than for conservation or transcribing purposes or for use in limited study at Vajradhatu centres or by authorized individuals, were made.

Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) retained custody of these sound recordings until their transfer to the Vajradhatu Archives in 1989. The fonds consists of sound recordings made at fifteen seminary programs from 1973 to 1990 by Vajradhatu Recordings pursuant to its policy of creating a permanent record of the teaching and administrative activities of the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and other principal teachers and administrators of Vajradhatu. Although all of the seminaries adhered to the same basic curriculum, as the program evolved the kind and number of activities-talks, classes, ceremonies, liturgies, administrative meetings, and social events-grew and were documented in sound recordings. The main lectures, including the question and answer periods following them, predominate.

Lectures from the thirteen seminaries taught by Trungpa Rinpoche comprise a unique cycle of oral instruction in the meditative discipline and philosophical view of the Kagyü and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan buddhism. The lectures are delivered in English, rather than in Trungpa Rinpoche’s native Tibetan tongue. Trungpa Rinpoche learned English in India and at Oxford and thereafter spoke it as a matter of choice. He taught his Western students in English, a practice which was generally not followed by other Tibetan teachers in the West. This marked the first time that teachings on Buddhism, and particularly the advanced teachings that Trungpa Rinpoche transmitted, were systematically presented to Western students in their own language and idiom. At his request, recordings of his principal lectures were transcribed, edited and published in limited editions as the Vajradhatu Seminary Transcripts.

Title based on contents of the fonds.
Extent includes duplicates.
Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration.
As a conservation measure a number of audio reels have been exercised and copied to both digital and high-quality cassette formats.
Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director.
Inventories accompany series descriptions.

For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings. Further accruals are expected, including the sound recordings from future Vajradhatu Seminaries presided over by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.
Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche fonds; the Vajradhatu fonds; the Nalanda Foundation fonds; the Naropa Institute events fonds; the Shambhala Training events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds.

Videocassette recordings related to portions of the fonds are in the custody of the Archives; a partial inventory is available.
Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.

An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.

Shambhala Training Events Fonds

[sound recordings]. — August 26, 1977-November 21, 1987 — ca. 236 audio cassettes and 86 audio reels

Shambhala Training was originated by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, the renowned Tibetan meditation master, who was one of the first major teachers of Buddhism in the West and a lineage holder of the Shambhala teachings. Trungpa Rinpoche’s interest in the Shambhala teachings dated from his years in Tibet, where he was the supreme abbot of the Surmang monasteries. As a young man, he studied Buddhist texts that discuss the legendary kingdom of Shambhala, the path to it, and its inner significance. After teaching Buddhism in the West for over fifteen years, Trungpa Rinpoche began in 1976 to present the Shambhala teachings in a nonsectarian program of study and meditation practice.

Trungpa Rinpoche describes this path as based on “the principles of sacredness, dignity and warriorship.” In the autumn of 1976 the first public programs offering this training, called “Weekend Intensive Meditation Programs,” were held; however, its acronym, “WIMP,” was considered inappropriate and the program was renamed “SIT” or “Shambhala Intensive Training.” Shortly thereafter it adopted its present name, Shambhala Training Program. Trungpa Rinpoche designated his chief student and spiritual successor, Ösel Tendzin, as co-founder of the program, which was established on February 22, 1977, by resolution of the board of directors of the Nalanda Foundation, an educational organization founded by Trungpa Rinpoche in 1974 in Boulder, Colorado.

Management of the program was placed under the direction of Karl Springer, a member of the board of directors of Nalanda Foundation. In 1978, Trungpa Rinpoche and Ösel Tendzin, working with a group of seasoned students, began to train them as teachers, called “program directors,” of the Shambhala Training Program. In March of that same year, Trungpa Rinpoche presented the teachings of Shambhala Training for the first time at a public talk at the University of Colorado in Boulder. By that time the program had been developed into a series of five weekend programs, or “levels.” The first three levels were taught by trained program directors; level four was presented by Ösel Tendzin; and level five by Trungpa Rinpoche.

The first level four and level five programs were held in February and November, 1979, respectively, in Boulder, Colorado. Also in 1979, a course of advanced training for program directors, called “Shambhala Education,” was created; later some of the material in this program was incorporated into a series of graduate level programs which followed the completion of the first five levels of training. Shambhala training currently offers a three-part program of study and practice: the Heart of Warriorship, which consists of five levels of training; the Sacred Path of Warriorship, consisting of six levels of training followed by a two-week residential program called the “Warrior Assembly”; and the Shambhala Training Seminary, a three-week residential program.

Each program offers meditation instruction and practice, talks on the Shambhala teachings, group discussions and individual interviews. In 1983 the Shambhala Training Program moved from Boulder, Colorado, to Halifax, Nova Scotia, at 1084 Tower Road. After Trungpa Rinpoche’s death in 1987 the program was carried on under the direction of Ösel Tendzin until his death in 1990. It is presently under the direction of Trungpa Rinpoche’s eldest son, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. The international administration is headed by education director Jeremy Hayward, an early member of the Nalanda Foundation board of directors, who has supervised the program from 1982 to the present time, and associate director Shelley Pierce.

A collection of the teachings of Trungpa Rinpoche on Shambhala, many of which were presented by him in the various levels of the program, were published in Shambhala: The Sacred Path of the Warrior (Shambhala Publications: 1984). A second volume of teachings is in preparation as of the writing of this description. Sound recordings of Shambhala Training events were created or acquired by and retained in the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings in Boulder, Colorado, a department of Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Vajradhatu Recordings recorded Nalanda Foundation events, of which Shambhala Training Program was a division, pursuant to its policy of creating a permanent record of the teaching and administrative activities of Trungpa Rinpoche and other principal teachers and administrators of the Foundation and its divisions. Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) retained custody of these sound recordings until their transfer to the Vajradhatu Archives in 1989.

Fonds consists of sound recordings of Shambhala Training events, including administrative activities; public talks and seminars; graduate and undergraduate level programs and associated activities; Shambhala Education talks; and talks to program directors. The majority of these activities were conducted or presided over by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, or his successor the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin.

The fonds is arranged in the following series:
Administrative activity
Graduate level talk or program
Public talk or seminar
Shambhala Education talk
Talk to directors
Undergraduate level talk or program
Title based on contents of fonds.
Extent includes duplicates.
Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration.

As a conservation measure a number of audio reels have been exercised and copied to both digital and high-quality cassette formats.
Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director.
Inventories accompany series descriptions.

For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.
Further accruals are expected.

Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche fonds; the Vajradhatu fonds; the Vajradhatu Seminary fonds; the Nalanda Foundation fonds; the Naropa Institute events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds.

An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.
Inventories accompany series descriptions.
For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.

Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche Fonds

[sound recordings]. — [ca. 1963?]-January 12, 1986. — ca. 992 audio reels and 848 audio cassettes

The Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche was born in Tibet in 1940. At the age of eleven months he was recognized as the successor to the tenth Trungpa tulku, or incarnate teacher, and entered his chief monastery in Surmang, located in eastern Tibet. During the next nineteen years he was fully trained in the Kagyü and Nyingma traditions of Buddhism, receiving the degree of khenpo, the equivalent of a doctorate. During this period he was enthroned as the abbot of the Surmang group of monasteries and empowered as Lord Mukpo, the civil governor of the Surmang region.

With the invasion of the Chinese communists in 1959, Trungpa Rinpoche was forced to flee on foot from Tibet to India. He spent four years in India before traveling to Oxford University on a Spalding scholarship, where he studied Western psychology, arts, and comparative religion and philosophy.

While at Oxford he began to teach Buddhism to Western students and in 1968 founded a meditation centre, Samye-Ling, in Dumfriesshire, Scotland. That same year Trungpa Rinpoche visited Bhutan at the invitation of the Bhutanese royal family. The following year, he relinquished his monastic vows and married an Englishwoman, Diana Pybus, and in May of 1970 moved with her to North America in response to invitations to teach there.

Shortly after his arrival, he founded a meditation and study centre in Vermont called Tail of the Tiger (later renamed Karme-Chöling) and another, Karma Dzong, in Boulder, Colorado. In 1973 he founded Vajradhatu, an international association of Buddhist meditation and study centres, and in 1974, the Nalanda Foundation, a nonprofit, educational organization. Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation, under Trungpa Rinpoche’s leadership, established numerous divisions, groups and projects promoting all aspects of Buddhist practice and study.

Vajradhatu centers include Karme-Chöling; Rocky Mountain Shambhala Center, a retreat center in Colorado; Gampo Abbey, a monastery in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia; and over 100 local centers worldwide. Major divisions of Nalanda Foundation include Naropa Institute and Shambhala Training. In 1977 Trungpa Rinpoche made the first of a series of visits to the Province of Nova Scotia, Canada, eventually selecting it as the new headquarters of Vajradhatu and the Nalanda Foundation. He and his family moved to Halifax late in 1986, and he died there the following year.

From 1970 to 1987, Trungpa Rinpoche traveled continually, criss-crossing the North American continent and, occasionally, Europe, teaching and lecturing to tens of thousands of people. He concentrated a great deal of his teaching activities in two locations: in Vermont, at Tail of the Tiger in Vermont (now Karme-Chöling); and in Colorado, at Rocky Mountain Dharma Center and at Karma Dzong in Boulder.
After his escape from Tibet, Trungpa Rinpoche studied English in India and at Oxford and thereafter spoke it as a matter of choice. He taught his Western students in English rather than in his native Tibetan tongue, a practice which was generally not followed by other Tibetan teachers in the West. This marked the first time that teachings on Buddhism, particularly the advanced teachings that Trungpa Rinpoche transmitted, were systematically presented to Western students in their own language and idiom.

To say that Trungpa Rinpoche was a prolific teacher is almost an understatement; the sound recordings in this fonds represent only a portion of the prodigious amount of teaching he did during his lifetime. His students, and later the organizations he founded, created and collected sound recordings of his teachings, from almost the moment he set foot in North America until his death. Many of the sound recordings of the teachings of Trungpa Rinpoche have been published in over thirty volumes by Shambhala Publications, Inc. (Horticultural Hall, 300 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02116); and in several dozen additional volumes, by Vajradhatu’s in-house publishing division, Vajradhatu Publications. Vajradhatu Recordings, a department of Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, was responsible for the creation, acquisition, custody, and use of sound recordings of the teaching and administrative activities of Trungpa Rinpoche, as well as of his successors, of other Buddhist teachers, and of administrators of Vajradhatu and of Nalanda Foundation.

Records indicate that systematic creation, acquisition and custody of sound recordings of Trungpa Rinpoche had begun as early as 1969. Among early documents is a list of recordings offered for sale, including a brief description of the ongoing effort to record, transcribe and disseminate Trungpa Rinpoche’s teachings through this medium. In the early 1970’s, these activities were carried on by Karma Dzong Recordings in Boulder, Colorado. Around the time of the founding of Vajradhatu, in 1973, Karma Dzong Recordings was renamed Vajradhatu Recordings. Sound recordings of Trungpa Rinpoche were maintained in the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) until 1989, when they were transferred to the Vajradhatu Archives.

Fonds consists of a large collection of sound recordings of Trungpa Rinpoche dating from 1969 to 1987, predominantly of public talks and seminars taught over a seventeen-year period throughout North America and Europe. The fonds also includes sound recordings of a series of courses taught by Trungpa Rinpoche in the early 1970’s at the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado; of traditional Buddhist ceremonies conducted by Trungpa Rinpoche; of interviews with groups of students to discuss various aspects of meditation practice and study; of two talks at dathuns, month-long programs of meditation practice; of informal discussions on a variety of topics; of poetry readings and exercises in elocution; of interviews conducted on behalf of various media, including radio, television and newspapers; and of a small group of “mystery” recordings.

The fonds is divided into the following series:
Early Scotland talk
1970 public talk or seminar
1971 public talk or seminar
1972 public talk or seminar
1973 public talk or seminar
1974 public talk or seminar
1975 public talk or seminar
1976 public talk or seminar
1978 public talk or seminar
1979 public talk or seminar
1980 public talk or seminar
1981 public talk or seminar
1982 public talk or seminar
1983 public talk or seminar
1985 public talk or seminar
1986 public talk or seminar
Ceremony
Dathun talk
Informal discussion
Meditation instruction audience or interview
Mysteries
Poetry and elocution
Radio, magazine or newspaper interview
University of Colorado class
Title based on contents of the fonds.
Extent includes duplicates. Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration. As a conservation measure a number of audio reels have been exercised and copied to both digital and high-quality cassette formats.

Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director.
Inventories accompany series descriptions.

For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.
Further accruals are expected.
Videocassette recordings related to portions of the fonds are in the custody of the Archives, and some are described in a finding aid for the Vajradhatu Archives Video Recovery Project.
Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.
Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Vajradhatu fonds; the Vajradhatu Seminary fonds; the Nalanda Foundation fonds; the Naropa Institute events fonds; the Shambhala Training events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds.

An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.

Vajradhatu Fonds

[sound recordings]. — October 17, 1970- February 26, 1990. — ca. 387 audio cassettes and 182 audio reels

Vajradhatu, an international organization of Buddhist churches, takes its name from the Sanskrit term meaning “indestructible space.” It was established by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in Boulder, Colorado, on February 22, 1973, to consolidate the activities of Tail of the Tiger in Vermont and Karma Dzong in Boulder, Colorado, both of which had been previously founded by him. Trungpa Rinpoche served as president of Vajradhatu until his death in 1987. He was succeeded by the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin.

Following the Vajra Regent’s death in 1990, Trungpa Rinpoche’s eldest son, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, was named president. The administrative functions and activities of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation were closely linked: their respective boards of directors were composed of the same individuals, with a few exceptions, and the corporations typically held joint board meetings. On September 6, 1977, Vajradhatu was incorporated in Canada as an Ontario corporation. The organization began moving its international headquarters to Halifax, Nova Scotia, in 1985, and on August 8, 1989, was reincorporated in the Province of Nova Scotia as “Vajradhatu Buddhist Church.”

Vajradhatu currently operates several large contemplative centres and over 100 local groups worldwide. Late in 1992, together with Nalanda Foundation, a nonprofit educational organization also founded by Trungpa Rinpoche, it began doing business under the name “Shambhala.” Vajradhatu’s head offices are currently located at 1084 Tower Road, Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) was the department of Vajradhatu responsible for creating sound recordings of the teaching and administrative activities of Trungpa Rinpoche and of other principal teachers and administrators of Vajradhatu, for a twofold purpose: to make a permanent record of these activities, and to provide the means for disseminating their contents to a wider audience through the sale of sound recordings as well as through their transcription and publication in written form. The articles of incorporation of Vajradhatu include the mandate “to promote, encourage, and advance the teachings of buddhism through development and dissemination of audio visual materials including tape recordings and motion picture films, and any other forms of communication.” Sound recordings were created or acquired by and retained in the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings in Boulder, Colorado pursuant to its policy of creating a permanent record of the teaching and administrative activities of the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and other principal teachers and administrators of Vajradhatu.

Vajradhatu Recordings retained custody of these sound recordings until their transfer to the Vajradhatu Archives in 1989. Fonds consists of sound recordings of a broad range of activities of Vajradhatu, including general administrative activities, community activities such as meetings, social events, holiday observances, and volunteer groups; ceremonies; and visits from important Buddhist teachers. All of these activities were conducted or presided over by its founder and president, the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, or his successor the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin, or other principal teachers and administrators.

The fonds is arranged in the following series:
Business conference or meeting
Ceremony for Buddhist lineage holder
Community holiday
Community social event
Community talk or meeting
Delek and dekyong system
Dharmadhatu or international sangha conference
International administration
Meditation instructor or teacher training
Music
Ngetön School of Higher Learning
Shrine blessing or dedication of centre
Visiting teacher
Volunteer or service group
Young people’s education.
Title based on contents of the fonds.
Extent includes duplicates.
Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration.

As a conservation measure a number of audio reels have been exercised and copied to both digital and high-quality cassette formats.
Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director.
Inventories accompany series descriptions.
For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.
Further accruals are expected.
Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche fonds; the Vajradhatu Seminary fonds; the Nalanda Foundation fonds; the Naropa Institute events fonds; the Shambhala Training events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds. An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.

Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin Fonds

[sound recordings]. — January 23, 1976-April 24, 1988. — ca. 270 audio cassettes and 197 audio reels

On August 22, 1976, in a public ceremony at Karma Dzong, the seat of Vajradhatu, an organization of Buddhist churches he founded in 1973, the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche empowered Thomas F. Rich as his Vajra Regent. In doing so he formally authorized him as his spiritual successor and indicated that he would continue to work closely with him to train him as a holder of the Kagyü and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan Buddhism.

In 1977, His Holiness Rangjung Rigpe Dorje, the sixteenth Gyalwa Karmapa and head of the Kagyü lineage, confirmed the Vajra Regent’s appointment as a lineage holder of the Kagyü. The Vajra Regent was the first Westerner to hold such a position.
Thomas F. Rich was born in 1943 in Passaic, New Jersey. He graduated in 1965 from Fordham University and then worked as a physical therapist in New York and Los Angeles. In 1966 he met Swami Satchidananda, a teacher of the Hindu tradition, and became one of his principle students, and was given the Hindu name, Narayana. He continued his studies in that tradition until 1971, when he first met Trungpa Rinpoche in Boulder, Colorado. With the blessings of Satchidananda, he moved to Tail of the Tiger, a residential community in Vermont founded by Trungpa Rinpoche.

Thomas Rich took the Buddhist vows of refuge while at Tail of the Tiger, receiving the name Ösel Tendzin, which means “luminosity holder of the teachings.” He served on the executive committee of Tail of the Tiger and in 1972 was appointed director of the Maitri program, a therapeutic community in Elizabethtown, New York, founded by Trungpa Rinpoche. It was at Tail of the Tiger that Ösel Tendzin first learned of Trungpa Rinpoche’s intentions for him, although he was not formally empowered as Vajra Regent until four years later.

In 1973 Ösel Tendzin attended the first Vajradhatu seminary program, a three-month residential program of meditation practice and study established by Trungpa Rinpoche for qualified students. Following that program, Ösel Tendzin moved to Boulder, Colorado, and soon after was appointed to the board of directors of the newly-founded Vajradhatu. Later, at the time of his empowerment as Vajra Regent, he was named executive vice-president of Vajradhatu and of Nalanda Foundation, a nonprofit educational organization founded in 1974 by Trungpa Rinpoche.

Following his empowerment as Vajra Regent, Ösel Tendzin began to travel and teach Buddhist doctrine and practice throughout North America and Europe, often joining with Trungpa Rinpoche in teaching programs. He was also the first of Trungpa Rinpoche’s students empowered to conduct traditional Buddhist ceremonies and confer empowerments for advanced students.

In 1977, the year after the Vajra Regent’s empowerment, Trungpa Rinpoche went on an extended retreat, leaving the management of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation, as well as the primary teaching responsibilities, in the hands of the Vajra Regent. In the late 1970’s, the Vajra Regent co-founded the Shambhala Training Program with Trungpa Rinpoche. The Vajra Regent also taught regularly at The Naropa Institute, a liberal arts college in Boulder, Colorado, founded by Trungpa Rinpoche, and worked closely with the institute’s administration and faculty in shaping its development. He founded the Regent’s Club, an association of major donors in support of the institute.

In 1981 Ösel Tendzin published Buddha in the Palm of Your Hand, based on talks he had given between 1976 and 1979. In addition to his teaching and administrative duties, the Vajra Regent practiced the arts of calligraphy, poetry and photography. He was also an avid golfer and participated in the annual Regent’s Open Golf Tournament in Boulder, Colorado. In 1985, the Vajra Regent moved with his family from Boulder, Colorado, to Halifax, Nova Scotia, to supervise the relocation of Vajradhatu’s administrative headquarters there. A year later, when Trungpa Rinpoche moved to Halifax, he requested the Vajra Regent to preside over the final weeks of the 1986 Vajradhatu seminary program on his behalf.

After the death of Trungpa Rinpoche in 1987 Ösel Tendzin succeeded to the post of president of Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation. He continued to travel and teach and presided over the 1988 Vajradhatu seminary program. Following that program, his health, which had been poor for some time, declined further, and he moved with his family to Ojai, California. On the advice of His Holiness Dingo Khyentse Rinpoche, an eminent teacher of the Nyingma lineage, the Vajra Regent entered into retreat at his residence in Ojai. The Vajra Regent died on August 25, 1990.

Vajradhatu Recordings, a department of Vajradhatu, an association of Buddhist churches founded in 1973 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, was responsible for the creation, acquisition, custody, and use of sound recordings of the teaching and administrative activities of Trungpa Rinpoche, as well as of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin and other Buddhist teachers and administrators of Vajradhatu and of Nalanda Foundation. Until 1989, when they were transferred to the Vajradhatu Archives, sound recordings of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin were maintained in the custody of Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings).

Fonds consists of sound recordings of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin created between 1976 and 1988, predominantly of public talks and seminars taught throughout North America and Europe. The fonds also includes sound recordings of traditional Buddhist ceremonies conducted by Ösel Tendzin; of interviews with groups of students to discuss various aspects of meditation practice and study; of talks at dathuns, month-long programs of meditation practice; of informal discussions on a variety of topics; of radio interviews; and of a small group of “mystery” recordings.

The fonds is arranged in the following series: 1. 1976 public talk or seminar 2. 1977 public talk or seminar 3. 1978 public talk or seminar 4. 1979 public talk or seminar 5. 1980 public talk or seminar 6. 1981 public talk or seminar 7. 1982 public talk or seminar 8. 1983 public talk or seminar 9. 1984 public talk or seminar 10. 1985 public talk or seminar 11. 1986 public talk or seminar 12. 1987 public talk or seminar 13. 1988 public talk or seminar 14. Ceremony 15. Dathun talk 16. Informal discussion 17. Meditation instruction audience or interview 18. Mysteries 19. Radio, magazine or newspaper interview.

Title based on contents of the fonds.
Extent includes duplicates.

Some audio reels show evidence of deterioration. As a conservation measure a number of audio reels have been exercised and copied to both digital and high-quality cassette formats.

Portions of the fonds are restricted to authorized students. Access to those records is by arrangement with the Archives Director. Access to other records is by permission of Lila Rich. Inventories accompany series descriptions. For additional details see the Vajradhatu Archives Database of Holdings.
Further accruals are expected.
Videocassette recordings related to portions of the fonds are in the custody of the Archives.

Photographic records related to portions of the fonds are described in the Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds Finding Aid.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: the Vajradhatu fonds; the Vajradhatu Seminary fonds; the Nalanda Foundation fonds; the Naropa Institute events fonds; the Shambhala Training events fonds; and the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin fonds.

An inventory of verbatim transcriptions of portions of the fonds exists.

VIDEO — Fonds Level Description

Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche American Teachings Fonds

The Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche video fonds.

[moving images]. — July 18, 1973 – [November 1, 1979?]. — ca. 100 video reels (ca. 90 hours): b&w

In the early 1970s, an organizational frame-work began to develop in support of the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s steadily expanding teaching activity. In 1970 some of Trungpa Rinpoche’s students preceded him to North America and established “Tail of the Tiger” (later Karme-Chôling) a rural retreat near Barnet, Vermont. It was here that Trungpa Rinpoche gave his first American seminar in 1970.

Soon after his arrival at Tail of the Tiger, Trungpa Rinpoche traveled to California on his first American teaching tour, at the invitation of Samuel Bercholz, founder of Shambhala Publications, a Berkeley publishing house established in 1969 to disseminate the teachings of Trungpa Rinpoche.

In 1971, following Trungpa Rinpoche’s decision to settle in Boulder, he and a group of his students established a meditation center there, naming it Karma Dzong, and a rural retreat in northern Colorado, the Rocky Mountain Dharma Center. But while he now had a home in Boulder, Trungpa Rinpoche spent much of his time traveling and teaching. Since Trungpa Rinpoche spoke witty, idiomatic English, wore Western clothing, and was comfortably familiar with Western culture, he succeeded, where no Buddhist teacher had before, in establishing a connection with North American language and custom, and his message was well received by a wide audience.

As Trungpa Rinpoche attracted more and more students, local meditation and study centers were established in communities throughout Canada and the United States, in addition to the centers already established by Trungpa Rinpoche and his first North American students. In 1973, Trungpa Rinpoche founded Vajradhatu, with headquarters in Boulder, as an international coordinating association for all these centers, followed in 1974 by the Nalanda Foundation. To ensure that the spiritual development of this expanding community kept pace with its organizational growth, Trungpa Rinpoche continued to travel widely and frequently on teaching tours across North America.

While he was impressed with the enthusiasm and energy which greeted his message, Trungpa Rinpoche was also concerned with the post-1960s dilettantism, or “spiritual shopping”, of many North Americans, and he therefore devoted much of his energy to ensuring that his students embraced the “disciplined” meditation practice which Buddhists view as essential for the attainment of basic sanity or enlightenment. This sort of teaching, aimed at the spiritual and intellectual development of the whole person, obviously required a suitable and specialized environment, hence the establishment of Vajradhatu and Nalanda. However, Trungpa Rinpoche was also active as a messenger, as well as a teacher. While much of his teaching was delivered in the form of extended, intensive seminars at Vajradhatu centers, he also gave frequent public talks in many cities and towns across North America, so as to introduce Buddhist philosophy and meditation to new audiences.

At the same time, Trungpa Rinpoche’s own family was also growing . In 1971, his first son, Ösel Rangdröl Mukpo, born in northern India in 1962, came to live with Trungpa Rinpoche and his wife, Diana Mukpo. In that same year, Diana Mukpo gave birth to Tendzin Lhawang Tagtrug, followed in 1973 by the couple’s second child, also a son, Arthur Gesar Mukpo. All three boys were later recognized as reincarnations of important Tibetan Buddhist gurus, and Ösel Rangdröl was invested by Trungpa Rinpoche with the title of Sawang (Earth Prince) in 1979.

The video recordings of Trungpa Rinpoche’s seminars at Karmê-Chöling (formerly Tail of the Tiger) and of his public talks and seminars in Boston were donated to the Shambhala Archives in 1992, by Mr. Jeff Krouk. The remaining tapes were either donated to the Archives in 1992 by the Naropa Institute or were donated by the individual creators of the recordings.

Between 1992 and 1994, the Vajradhatu Archives, in partnership with the Naropa Institute and the Public Archives of Nova Scotia, implemented a Video Recovery Project, in which many of the recordings in this fonds were transferred to more stable video formats. Item level descriptions of transferred videos were prepared during the project.

The fonds consists of black and white video recordings of seminars and public talks delivered by Trungpa Rinpoche at various locations across the United States, and of several important ceremonies involving members of his family which he conducted during the 1970s.

Although the recordings in this fonds capture only a fraction of Trungpa Rinpoche’s prodigious teaching activity during this time, they present an interesting cross-section of this work, since both intensive seminars delivered to his more advanced students and public talks intended for a general audience are contained in the fonds.

Many aspects of Trungpa Rinpoche’s teachings are recorded here, on such themes as “Zen & Tantra”, Buddhist aesthetics, “Tibetan Buddhism & American Karma”, and the three main “Vehicles” of Buddhist teaching, Hinayana, Mahayana, and Vajrayana.

The fonds is arranged in the following series:

  1. Seminars
  2. Public talks and seminars
  3. Ceremonies

Title based on the contents of the fonds.

Video reels show evidence of the problems inherent to the 1/2 inch reel to reel video format, notably deterioration of signal, loss of lubricant or binder, and oxide shedding. Video reels transferred in Video Recovery Project were vacuum-cleaned during transfer. Most video reels were donated to the Shambhala Archives by the Naropa Institute or by Mr. Jeff Krouk in 1992. Videocassette copies, in S-VHS, 3/4 inch-SP, and VHS formats, are available in the Shambhala Archives. Due to preservation concerns, access is permitted to videocassette copies only.

Copyright is held by the Shambhala Archives and by Diana J. Mukpo.
Inventories attached to series descriptions.
Non-RAD item level descriptions available.
Further accruals are not expected.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche fonds; Naropa Institute events fonds. These are described in: Guide to the Sound Recordings of Vajradhatu Recordings: Volume One and Volume Three respectively.

Photographic records relating to portions of this fonds also exist, and are described in: Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds: Finding Aid.

 

Naropa Institute Fonds

The Naropa Institute video fonds.

[moving images]. — June 10, 1974 – [July, 1977?]. — ca. 203 video reels (ca. 180 hours): b&w.

The Naropa Institute is a private, non-profit liberal arts college located in Boulder, Colorado, offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in the arts, social sciences, and humanities. The Institute was one of the three original divisions of the Nalanda Foundation, a non-profit educational and social service organization incorporated on January 18, 1974 by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche. The other two divisions of the Nalanda Foundation were: the Maitri Project, a mental health training program; and Mudra Theater, an experimental theater group.

The Naropa Institute grew out of Trungpa Rinpoche’s vision of a university which would combine contemplative Buddhist studies with Western scholastic and artistic disciplines, following the example of Nalanda University, a Buddhist institution of scholastic and contemplative disciplines which flourished in India from the fifth to the eleventh centuries. The Naropa Institute was named after Naropa, a renowned Buddhist scholar, teacher, and practitioner, who had served as Nalanda University’s abbot in the eleventh century.

In late 1973 and early 1974, Trungpa Rinpoche and a dedicated group of volunteers, none of whom had any prior experience in university administration, labored mightily to realize his vision, building a university “from scratch” in the space of a few months. Most of the project’s financing, and many of its personnel, came from Karma Dzong, a Buddhist meditation and study center established by Trungpa Rinpoche in Boulder in 1971. These efforts came to fruition in June, 1974, when, instead of the anticipated enrollment of 300 to 400 students, almost 2000 students and faculty arrived in Boulder to take part in Naropa Institute’s first summer session of over 100 courses and workshops in Eastern and Western disciplines of meditation, philosophy, psychology, poetry, creative writing, theater, dance, music, and visual arts.

Ever since Trungpa Rinpoche had begun teaching in the West during the late 1960s, his students had been recording many of his lectures on audio tape, and this activity was formalized in 1973 when Trungpa Rinpoche established Vajradhatu Recordings for the express purpose of creating and distributing sound recordings of his teachings. However, it was decided in 1974 that Trungpa Rinpoche’s innovative experiment in education at Naropa should be recorded in an innovative way. The Naropa Institute obtained a grant from the United States’ National Endowment for the Arts for the purchase of high-quality 1/2 inch reel to reel, black & white video recording equipment.

Although audio tape remained the favored method of recording Naropa Institute activity into the 1980s, much of the Institute’s work throughout the mid-1970s was also recorded by the video project, under the auspices of its Department of Public Relations, resulting in an audio-visual record which powerfully evokes the spirit and energy of the Naropa Institute’s early years. Many prominent American academics, poets, and performing artists, including Allen Ginsberg, John Cage, Harvey Cox, John Ashbery, Ann Waldman, Gregory Bateson, Herbert Guenther, William S. Burroughs, Lee Worley, and Barbara Dilley, to name but a few, came to teach at Naropa, either as faculty members or guest lecturers. This ability to attract prestigious faculty has continued to be a hallmark of the Naropa Institute.

After a second successful summer session in 1975, the Naropa Institute began offering degree and certificate programs year-round in 1976. In July, 1978, Naropa was granted candidacy for accreditation by the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, although the Institute was not fully accredited until 1986. After the initial summer sessions, enrollment at Naropa declined slightly, and the Institute weathered years of financial hardship. The Institute also generated some controversy, due largely to the somewhat unconventional instructional methods practiced by Trungpa Rinpoche and other Naropa faculty. However, positive interest in the Naropa Institute remained strong, and its position stabilized considerably during the early 1980s.

The Institute’s first Executive Director was Martin W. Janowitz (this title was later changed to Dean, and then to President), with John Baker, Jeremy Hayward, and Bill Indich serving as Vice Presidents. Trungpa Rinpoche acted as president of the Naropa Institute from 1974 until its 1985 reorganization as an autonomous, non-profit educational corporation under the direction of a board of trustees, at which time he became an ex-officio member of the board until his death in 1987. The Institute’s first dean, Judith Lief, was appointed in 1980, and served until 1984, when she was succeeded by Chancellor Barbara Dilley. The title of Chancellor was changed to President in 1989, and Barbara Dilley served in this position until in 1993, when she was succeeded by the current president, John W. Cobb.

Many of the individuals active in helping Trungpa Rinpoche establish Naropa, such as Jeremy Hayward, Chuck Lief, and Martin Janowitz, continue to serve on the Institute’s Board of Trustees. The Naropa Institute’s current address is 2130 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder, Colorado, 80302-6697.

The video recordings in this fonds were maintained in the custody of their creating agency, the Naropa Institute, until the late 1970s. At this time, the recordings came into the possession of the Vajradhatu Office of Publications. Volunteers cleaned, packed, and inventoried the video recordings, and Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) stored them until 1988, when, following Vajradhatu’s move from Boulder to Halifax, N.S. and the establishment of a formal Vajradhatu Archives (now Shambhala Archives), the recordings were housed in the climate-controlled vaults of the Public Archives of Nova Scotia to stabilize their fragile condition. At this time, the video reels were reboxed, and a new inventory was prepared by the Shambhala Archives.

The Naropa Institute donated the recordings to the Shambhala Archives in 1992. Between 1992 and 1994, the Shambhala Archives, in partnership with the Naropa Institute and the Public Archives of Nova Scotia, implemented a Video Recovery Project, in which most of the recordings in this fonds were transferred to more stable video formats.

Item level descriptions of transferred videos were prepared during the Project. At the present time, approximately 65 of the video reels in this fonds, mostly from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics series and the Naropa Institute faculty lectures and public talks series, remain to be transferred.

Fonds consists of video recordings of a wide variety of the Naropa Institute’s early activities, including: the Institute’s 1974 convocation ceremony; promotional and educational programs recorded by the Institute for public broadcast; lectures delivered by the Institute’s faculty and guest lecturers; and numerous lectures from the Institute’s summer session founder’s course, delivered by the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and his successor, the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin.

A generous representation of the institute’s fundraising and outreach work is recorded in this fonds, with a number of videos of public lectures or readings given by Trungpa Rinpoche and many of Naropa’s regular faculty and guest lecturers. While the recordings are fairly diverse in their scope and content, there is a consistent overall focus on the Naropa Institute’s educational mission to explore various Western artistic and academic disciplines in a Buddhist contemplative context.

The fonds is arranged in the following series:

  1. Summer session founder’s course
  2. Special events and promotional activity
  3. “Open Secret” panel discussions
  4. Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics readings and lectures
  5. Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche Naropa public talks
  6. Naropa faculty lectures and public talks

Title based on the contents of the fonds.

Video reels show evidence of the problems inherent to the 1/2 inch reel to reel video format, notably deterioration of signal, loss of lubricant or binder, and oxide shedding.
Video reels transferred in Video Recovery Project were vacuum cleaned during transfer.
Video reels donated by Naropa Institute in 1992.
Videocassette copies, in S-VHS, 3/4inch-SP, and VHS formats, are available for transferred videos in the Shambhala Archives.
Due to preservation concerns, access is permitted to videocassette copies only.

Copyright for all recordings in which the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche (VCTR) appears is held by Shambhala Archives and Diana J. Mukpo. [For all recordings in which VCTR does not appear, copyright is held by the Naropa Institute and the artist(s) appearing in the recording.]Inventories accompany series-level descriptions. Non-RAD item-level descriptions available for transferred videos in the Shambhala Archives’ offices.
Associated materials may be found in the Naropa Institute Allen Ginsberg Library.
Further accruals are not expected.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: Vajradhatu fonds; Naropa Institute events fonds. These are described in: The Guide to the Sound Recordings of Vajradhatu Recordings: VOLUME TWO and VOLUME THREE respectively.

Photographic records relating to portions of this fonds also exist, and are described in: Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds: Finding Aid.

Researchers seeking further information about the early years of the Naropa Institute should note that a binder of newspaper clippings relating to the activities of the Institute and its faculty from the years 1974 to 1980 was compiled by the Nalanda Foundation Information Office, and is now held in the offices of the Shambhala Archives.

Also held in the offices of the Shambhala Archives are photocopies of Naropa Institute course calendars and faculty biographies from 1976 and 1977, forwarded by the institute’s Allen Ginsberg Library to assist in the preparation of this finding aid.

Another unpublished source of information held in the archives’ office is a bound volume containing photocopied excerpts from a “Status Study Report to the Commission of Higher Education of the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools” prepared by Naropa Institute in November, 1977 as part of the institute’s bid for accreditation.

Two publications of interest are LOKA and LOKA 2, both edited by Rick Fields, which record the Naropa Institute’s 1974 and 1975 summer sessions, respectively. Both of these journals, published by Anchor Books, contain a generous selection of writings (or transcripts of lectures), interviews, illustrations, and photographs prepared by faculty and students during Naropa’s first two summer sessions.

The Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche gives a brief account of the establishment and the early days of the Naropa Institute in the Epilogue of the 1977 edition of his autobiography, Born in Tibet (Boston: Shambhala Publications, 1985).

The Mudra Theatre Training Fonds

The Mudra Theatre Training video fonds.

[moving images]. — [June, 1974?] – [June, 1975?]. — 8 video reels (c. 6 hours): b&w

In addition to the traditional teachings and practice of Buddhism, one of the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s interests was to take elements of the existing North American culture, and transform them so that they would serve as a suitable vehicle for Buddhist teaching. An early step in this direction was the establishment of the Mudra Theater group.

In 1972, Trungpa Rinpoche developed a series of mantra-like “sound cycles” for the training of mind and speech. In the winter of 1972-1973, Trungpa Rinpoche and some of his students hosted a theater conference in Boulder, which brought together members of experimental theater groups from across the United States, including the Open Theater, the Byrd-Hoffman, and the Provisional Theater. Prominent participants at this conference included Lee Worley, Jean-Claude Van Itallie, and Robert Wilson. Following the conference, Trungpa Rinpoche presented a group of his students who had participated with a series of “mudra theater exercises” (“mudra” refers to a symbolic gesture), based on traditional Tibetan monastic dance and Tibetan yoga, which focused on principles of center and space and their mutual intensification and diffusion. This reflected Trungpa Rinpoche’s emphasis on training body, mind, and speech rather than staging conventional theatrical performances.

The Mudra group’s first director was David Rome, who was quickly succeeded by Andrew Karr, who led the group, along with Trungpa Rinpoche, until 1976. When Trungpa Rinpoche established the Nalanda Foundation in January, 1974, Mudra Theater was designated as one of the foundation’s main divisions. At about this time, Trungpa Rinpoche also presented the Mudra group with the script for their first perfomance, entitled Prajna, which he based on the Heart Sutra, an important collection of Mahayana Buddhist writings. Mudra premiered this piece at the second Mudra Theater Conference, and also performed it at the “Dharma Art Festival” in San Francisco in October, 1974 and at the Naropa Institute.

In addition to Prajna, Mudra staged or worked with a number of plays by Trungpa Rinpoche, including Sandcastles and Kingdom of Philosophy (1972), and Water Festival (1976). While Mudra Theater and the Naropa Institute were formally distinct divisions of the Nalanda Foundation, both were based in Boulder and used many of the same facilities. In addition, many Mudra members were also active with Naropa, most notably Lee Worley, who created Naropa’s theater program, and was also a founding member of Mudra.

Naropa’s own theater training program was based on “mudra” principles, and the Mudra Theater group occasionally performed at Naropa. It is probable that this close working relationship led to some of Mudra’s work being recorded by the Naropa Institute’s video project. Although productions from Mudra’s repertory are now rarely performed, the training exercises are still being taught, especially in Europe, as “mudra space awareness training”. The Naropa Institute’s Theater program also continues to use elements of “mudra training”. The video recording of the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche conducting theater exercise at Tail of the Tiger was made by Mr. Jeff Krouk, who donated the recording to the Vajradhatu Archives (now Shambhala Archives) in 1992.

All of the other video recordings in this fonds were maintained in the custody of their creating agency, the Naropa Institute, until the late 1970s. At this time, the recordings came into the possession of the Vajradhatu Office of Publications. Volunteers cleaned, packed, and inventoried the video recordings, and Vajradhatu Recordings (now Kalapa Recordings) stored them until 1988, when, following Vajradhatu’s move from Boulder to Halifax, N.S. and the establishment of a formal Vajradhatu Archives (now Shambhala Archives), the recordings were housed in the climate-controlled vaults of the Public Archives of Nova Scotia to stabilize their fragile condition. At this time, the video reels were reboxed, and a new inventory was prepared by the Shambhala Archives.

The Naropa Institute donated the recordings to the Shambhala Archives in 1992. Between 1992 and 1994, the Shambhala Archives, in partnership with the Naropa Institute and the Public Archives of Nova Scotia, implemented a Video Recovery Project, in which some of the recordings in this fonds were transferred to more stable video formats. Fonds consists of video recordings of several theatrical performances and workshops conducted by the Mudra Theater group in Boulder in the mid-1970s.

One of the performances recorded is the Boulder debut of Trungpa Rinpoche’s play Prajna, directed by Andy Karr, and one of the workshops was recorded with Trungpa Rinpoche acting as camera operator. There is also an interesting video of Trungpa Rinpoche leading a group of students in mudra theater exercises at Tail of the Tiger in Vermont in July, 1973. The video recordings in this fonds provide what may well be the only surviving audio-visual record of the early years of the Mudra Theater group.

Title based on the contents of the fonds.
Video reels show evidence of the problems inherent to the 1/2 inch reel to reel video format, notably deterioration of signal, loss of lubricant or binder, and oxide shedding.
Video reels transferred in Video Recovery Project were vacuum cleaned during transfer.
Video reels donated to the Shambhala Archives by the Naropa Institute or by Mr. Jeff Krouk in 1992.
Videocassette copies, in S-VHS, 3/4inch-SP, and VHS formats, are available for transferred videos in the Shambhala Archives.
Due to preservation concerns, access is permitted to videocassette copies only.

Copyright for all recordings in which the Venerable Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche (VCTR) appears is held by Shambhala Archives and Diana J. Mukpo. [For all recordings in which VCTR does not appear, copyright is held by the Naropa Institute and the artist(s) appearing in the recording.]Inventory accompanies description.
Associated materials may be found in the Naropa Institute Allen Ginsberg Library.
Further accruals are not expected.

Related materials may be found in the following fonds of sound recordings: Nalanda Foundation fonds. These are described in: The Guide to the Sound Recordings of Vajradhatu Recordings: Volume Three.

Photographic records relating to portions of this fonds also exist, and are described in: Vajradhatu and Nalanda Foundation Information Office Photographic Fonds: Finding Aid.

In addition to Born in Tibet (Boston: Shambhala Publications, 1985), there are several unpublished sources of information on the early days of the Mudra Theater Group.

A binder of newspaper clippings compiled by the Nalanda Foundation Information Office covering the years 1974 to 1980 is now held in the offices of the Shambhala Archives.
Most of the clippings relate to the Naropa Institute and its faculty, but there are also some articles on the Mudra Theater group.

The Shambhala Archives holds manuscripts for most of Trungpa Rinpöche’s plays, along with audio recordings and transcripts of some of his classes on mudra theater principles, and guide sheets for mudra workshops.

The Archives also holds some textual records relating to a Mudra Theater Conference. Some of this material, which has not yet been arranged or described, was donated by David Rome, while the remainder was donated by Mr. Andrew Karr in 1991. Mr. Karr also gave an interview in April, 1997 to assist in the preparation of this finding aid, and his time and insight are gratefully acknowledged.