Medicine Buddha Rejuvenation Retreat
Dr. Nida Chenagtsang and Robert Thurman | April 7-12, 2023
Tantric Ngagpa Lama Doctor, Yuthok Yonten Gonpo the Younger (1126-1202 CE), transmitted the Buddha’s medical knowledge and teaching developed over 17 centuries by learned and enlightened mendicant and lay physicians in various kingdoms in the Indian subcontinent, revealed outside Vaishali city by Shākyamuni Buddha and transformed for the occasion into the dark blue sapphire-colored radiant Eighth Medicine Guru Buddha (Bhaiṣhajyaguru Buddha). In fact, the Younger Yuthok was himself considered an emanation of the Medicine Buddha, resurrecting the Indian Four Medicine Tantras codified by Vāgbhaṭṭa, the vast literature of Indian Buddhist medicine that burned with the destruction of the Library of Nālandā Monastic University in 1172 CE. Dr. Nida is renowned in our time as both a Master physician and an eminent Ngagpa (lay Tantric master) carrying the banner of healing of the spiritual/physical mind/body sentient human.
Although our era is known as allowing humans in general to live in a particular body for only a century or so, Tibetan Buddhist Medicine theory defines ultimate health as mind-body full enlightenment, where one realizes one’s flesh and blood and bone is also made of clearlight, and so one blisses out no matter what happens. Short of that blessed state of grace, one has imbalances of physical and emotional energies that cause one suffering, but the bonus is if one develops intelligence into wisdom, one can feel the default probability of bliss-freedom indivisible reality, at least simulate that bliss-state experience, and focus one’s precious human life energy on getting to Buddhahood for real, in order to enjoy the full ability of loving and helping others. This is what we will work on with Ngagpa Dr. Nida and Thurman.
There is bcud ken, “essence-taking,” various kinds of special fasting yoga (these take a bit longer but will be introduced). There are also routine dietary and behavioral rejuvenating disciplines to learn, and mentally there are the yogas of cultivating transcendence/compassion and the super-wisdom of emptiness/openness/infinite connectivity that realistically and easily intensifies vitality at any age, culminating in the Dzogchen “Great Connectivity” (mahāsaṁdhi) that is the Ngagpa specialty. It is what enabled Yuthok himself to live a full rich life transmitting the vivid vision of the Medicine Buddha’s pure land, healing people right and left, cultivating a wide circle of enlightening bodhisattva disciples through Great Connectivity perfection teachings with all its detailed sutric and tantric scaffolding. He then departed that one body in the time of his own choosing into the sparklingly visible Rainbow Body, singing his song of prayerful vows to emanate as many healing emanation embodiments as all beings everywhere and everywhen would ever need without ceasing.
Takeaways from this retreat include: a thorough overview of the Medicine Buddha pure land and teaching from RootTantra, introduction to/reminder of Great Connectivity Perfection transcendent wisdom, tasting of the three life-bardo-betweens of lucid waking, dreaming, and meditating, practicing vajrayogas with expert supervision, experiencing by individual choice external Tibetan therapies at the Dewa Spa, as well as forest bathing in the Menla forest gardens, and perhaps ceremonial blessings of longevity and rejuvenation according to the tradition of Yuthok Yonten Gonpo.
Open to all levels of experience.
We have a limited number of spots for students needing scholarship assistance. These are need based and will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis. To apply, please email [email protected].
To register for in-person attendance for this retreat, please visit: www.menla.org.