Teachers

Over the 25+ years since Dorje Denma Ling was established, we have been fortunate to host many accomplished Buddhist and Shambhala teachers, as well as other directors who have shared their wisdom through contemplative arts, cultural and community-building retreats. The list is too long to present here.

The individuals featured on this page are teachers who will be leading online or in-person retreats during 2021.

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Acharya Richard John

A longtime student of both the Vidyadhara and the Sakyong, Acharya John has for many years taught Shambhala Buddhist programs throughout North America. He completed the first three-year group retreat at Gampo Abbey, and leads annual 9-Day Mahamudra Retreats at DDL, Karme Choling, SMC and Casa Werma. Richard and his wife Liz live in Halifax.

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Catherine Neill

Catherine Neill became the Executive Director of Dorje Denma Ling in February 2019. She has served in the Shambhala mandela in a variety of roles, including as Operations Commander for the Dorje Kasung, as Drala Regional Commander, and as a Resident Director of Shambhala Training. Catherine has been a member of the Shambhala community since 1981 and was a student of Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche. She is also a student of his son, Sakyong Mipham, Rinpoche.

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Christie Cashman

Christie first encountered the dharma as a young girl. During a long stay in Japan, she made daily visits to Buddhist and Shinto temples and began to feel a deep connection with the penetrating quietude of these environments. It was years later in 1968, while studying at the University of California in Berkeley, that Christie learned to meditate under the guidance of Suzuki Roshi. A few years later Christie picked up Trungpa Rrinpoche’s Meditation in Action.  Learning of Rinpoche’s “resonant and outrageous” lifestyle, she sold her belongings, packed a little bag and moved to Boulder, Colorado to become his student. That…

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Christine Heming

Christine Heming, a senior teacher in Shambhala, has been a meditation instructor and teacher of the buddhadharma for over 40 years.  She has been a student of the Vidyadhara Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, the Venerable Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. She has completed a three-year retreat in the Kagyu Buddhist tradition. She lives in Port Royal, Nova Scotia.

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Elizabeth Callahan

Elizabeth Callahan began her contemplative training and Tibetan studies in 1977, and completed two three-year retreats at Kagyu Thubten Chöling, New York, under the direction of Kalu Rinpoche. She is a student of Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche, and has translated key texts of the Karma Kagyu tradition, including Mahamudra: Ocean of Definitive Meaning, Profound Inner Principles, and, most recently, Moonbeams of Mahamudra. She has been a Tsadra Foundation Fellow since 2002 and is the director of the Tsadra Foundation Studies Scholarship Program.

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Hope Martin

Hope Martin has taught the Alexander Technique for 33 years, trained Alexander teachers for two decades at the American Center for the Alexander Technique, and operates Hope Martin Studio in New York City. She is a Meditation Instructor, a Focusing trainer and has been a close student of Pema Chodron for 28 years. Her particular passion is in helping her students discover how easeful, upright posture is an expression of their human dignity, confidence, and innate wakefulness. To learn more about Hope’s work, visit hopemartinstudio.com

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Irini Rockwell

Irini Rockwell has been internationally recognized for over 30 years as a Buddhist teacher, author, coach, and trainer. Her writings include two books: The Five Wisdom Energies, a Buddhist Way of Understanding Personalities, Emotions and Relationships (in 10 languages; published in 2002) and Natural Brilliance (published 2012). Of her calling, Irini explains, “For decades I have been deeply interested in the essence of who we are and how we can bring out our best to serve the world. The Five Wisdoms have been the vehicle to bring together my training in Buddhist dharma, psychology, meditation, (mindfulness and awareness), compassion, psychotherapy, leadership, mind/body disciplines, movement, and…

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John McQuade

John McQuade is the founder of Nalanda Miksang Photography, and has established Nalanda Miksang teachers in North America, Europe and Australia. He is also co-author of two books in his field: Looking and Seeing, and Heart of Photography. He is currently on the faculty of the Halliburton School of Art and Design and is completing a PhD on the classic photographer, Edward Weston. John is also a practising Buddhist, having studied with Chogyam Trungpa from 1979 until Rinpoche’s death in 1987. Besides being an accomplished meditation master, Trungpa Rinpoche was also an artist, a poet and a photographer. Nalanda Miksang contemplative photography is based on the…

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John Rockwell

John Rockwell has been on the path of dharma for 45 years. He met Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1975 and studied and practiced the Buddhist and Shambhala teachings for 12 years with him, and in particular worked with him on translating Tibetan texts into English. For ten years, he studied and taught at Naropa University in the Buddhist Studies department. For many years, he served as an acharya or senior teacher for Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, and also studied intensively with Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche. John’s inspiration is to share the profound and practical teachings that he has received.

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Kiron Khosla

In the last decade I have completed more than a thousand hours of Chinese medicine, specifically acupuncture and massage, in the August Brodde School in Wuppertal, Germany. I have been teaching Qi Gong (working with energy) and Taiji Quan (the highest law of fist) since 2011 to a small circle of people on a regular basis. I teach everything from the “top of the mountain” — meaning I lay all the secrets bare from the first, so that in principle, anyone can join the class in the middle of the curriculum and walk down with a view. I find this…

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Kristine McCutcheon

Kristine McCutcheon is a householder yogi in the Shambhala tradition.  Whose buddhist practice includes completing a 3 year retreat, studying with Ven. Thrangu Rinpoche, Khenpo Rinpoche, Pema Chodron and her heart teacher Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. Kristine lives with her husband in Cape Breton between the mountain and ocean.

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Mark Nowakowski

Mark Nowakowski met the Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1972 and has been his student ever since. He currently studies with other Kagyü and Nyingma masters. Mark is a senior member of the Nalanda Translation Committee and a senior teacher in the Shambhala mandala. He did his first Fire Offering in 1985, and his second that same year with the Vidyadhara, and with Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche the following year. Since then he has led many Amending and Four Karma Fire Offerings. In 2006, he requested the Sakyong’s blessing and permission to do weekend rite-of-aid fire offerings to benefit our mandala…

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Nancy Huszagh

Nancy became a student of the Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1979. In 2010, she completed the three-year-retreat at Söpa Chöling under the direction of Thrangu Rinpoche and subsequently assumed the role of Druppon for the latest retreat which concluded August 2017.

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Nick Kranz

Nick Kranz has been a student of Buddhism since 1997. He has developed an approach to cultural transformation with the practice of Social Meditation Learn more at www.nickkranz.com. Teacher Nick Kranz is an experienced and dynamic meditation teacher with a passion for sharing authentic wisdom. He’s interested in social innovation, cultural transformation, and collaborative business that positively impacts society. Skillful Guide After 20 years of deep training in the practice of meditation, Nick has a profound belief in everyone’s potential to explore and benefit from the practice, and is devoted to guiding people along the path with friendliness and skill. He has studied with Khenpo…

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Scott Perkins

Scott Perkins is a certified Recovery Coach, Recovery Coach Trainer, and Meditation Teacher. He began practicing Buddhism in 1988 and completed a Master’s degree in Buddhist Studies from Naropa University in 1992.  Scott has been teaching on Buddhism and Meditation for over 25 years. Scott began his own path of recovery on Christmas Day, 2005 and has been exploring the intersection of recovery and meditation since that time. In his role as a Recovery Coach, Scott helps others craft personal paths/programs that supports their recovery from addictions and strengthens their ability to experience life with sanity, courage, and compassion. In 2006, Scott founded and continues to lead the Washington DC…

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Scott Wellenbach

Scott Wellenbach has been a member of the Nalanda Translation Committee for over 30 years. He was an early student of Trungpa Rinpoche and is now a member of Ponlop Rinpoche’s Nithartha faculty. Scott is known for his learned and accessible teaching style, with particular emphasis on Mahamudra instructions.

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Shastri Mary Campbell

As a student of Shambhala Buddhism, Mary has studied and practiced meditation extensively for over 35 years.   Since 2010, she has served as a shastri (senior teacher) for the Halifax Shambhala Centre.  Mary teaches widely, leading public and advanced programs.  Professionally, Mary is a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Psychiatry and Mental Health and for many years has taught meditation within health care settings.  She has written on mindfulness for nursing publications and been a co-investigator in mindfulness research.  Mary lives in Halifax with her husband.

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Shastri Steve Gleich

Shastri Steve Gleich feels very fortunate to have received teachings from Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche and their senior students and to have been in the Shambhala Buddhist world since 1982. He is now retired from 30+ years career in psychology and mental health and 10+ years career as woodworker. He has been married to Lilly for 38 years, and they are now living in Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia. He continues to volunteer with Dorje Denma Ling, Tatamagouche Shambhala Meditation Group, Dorje Kasung Land Group, and the local food bank.

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Tom Bell, Senior Teacher

Shastri Tom Bell became a student of the Vidyadhara in 1972, and has been active since then in direct service to both of the Sakyongs and also to the current Sakyong Wangmo. He was on the staff of RMDC (Shambhala Mountain Centre) in the mid-70s, was the director of Karme Choling from 2000-2003, and has been an active Shambhala teacher since 1976. He has worked to support his family through a career in business and economic development in Colorado and Nova Scotia. His immediate family now numbers fifteen, including his wife, three children, their spouses, and seven grandchildren. He was…