March 2024 Member Newsletter

We’re excited to share what’s new to the Wisdom Experience this March and hope these resources continue to provide you with moments of inspiration, adventure, and awakening all month long.

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The In-Depth membership is a way for dedicated practitioners to spend a year in comprehensive study with beloved teachers and renowned masters. In-Depth members can enroll in four of the courses in the Wisdom Experience Course Catalog a year, for less than the price of two. In-Depth members also save 20% on all physical and ebooks they purchase through Wisdom, and as always, our non-profit mission means we’re committed to reinvesting every membership contribution into sharing the Dharma, supporting teachers, and expanding our library of exceptional Buddhist content. Dive deeply into profound wisdom, upgrade to an In-Depth Membership today. You’ll instantly unlock a world of wisdom, savings, and exclusive content. To learn more, click here.

As you read the rest of the newsletter, remember to keep an eye out for the membership level icon in the corner of each image. These mark what level of membership the content is available to. 


During the month of March, Fathoming The Mind and the film The Geshema is Born are available to Free members.


Fathoming the Mind continues the commentary on Düdjom Lingpa’s Vajra Essence that appeared in Stilling the Mind, daringly contextualizing Buddhist teachings on the Great Perfection as a revolutionary challenge to many contemporary beliefs. This companion volume stems from an oral commentary that B. Alan Wallace gave to the next section of the Vajra Essence, on the cultivation of contemplative insight, or vipaśyanā, that fathoms the nature of existence as a whole. Düdjom Lingpa’s revelation consists of a fascinating dialogue that occurred during his pure vision of Samantabhadra, the personification of primordial consciousness, manifesting as the youthful form of the Lake-born Vajra emanation of Padmasambhava, in dialogue with an entourage of bodhisattvas symbolizing various aspects of Düdjom Lingpa’s mind.


For the Buddha, establishing a community of nuns was a radical experiment for its time. Over the centuries Buddhist religious life was available to women, and many historical events mention highly accomplished nuns. But the highest monastic qualifications were denied to them. His Holiness the Dalai Lama worked for decades along with Tibetan Buddhist nuns to empower and enable them to finally receive the same education and degree as the monks. In achieving this the nuns impact the potential of women across all faiths and foreground the wisdom and uniqueness of the feminine experience. The Geshema is Born traces the journey of an exceptional nun, Namdol Phuntsok, the first woman ever to be awarded the highest degree in Tibetan philosophy—the Geshema degree, which stands for the “knower of virtue.”


Don’t forget, you can invite your friends to sign up for a Free membership to join you.



We’re pleased to announce that we’re adding the Vajra Essence, Part 4 to our offerings for our In-Depth and All-Access members. The Vajra Essense, Part 4 is an eight-week retreat with Lama Alan Wallace. During this retreat, Lama Alan grants an oral transmission and commentary to Düdjom Lingpa’s revealed treatise, The Vajra Essence. This retreat focuses on Dudjom Lingpa’s famous text, The Vajra Essence: From the Matrix of Pure Appearances and Primordial Consciousness, a Self-Emergent Tantra of the Nature of Existence.

In this final 8-week retreat of this series on Düdjom Lingpa’s revelations of the Great Perfection, we come to the culmination of the Lake-Born Vajra’s teachings in The Vajra Essence on cutting through to the original purity of pristine awareness (tekchö). Part 1 and Part 2 covered the first three phases and part of the fourth phase of this masterpiece, in which the Lake-Born Vajra gives complete teachings on achieving śamatha and vipaśyanā and on identifying pristine awareness. Part 3 completes phase 4, and provides a detailed explanation of core elements of the stages of generation and completion practice as viewed from the perspective of the Great Perfection. 

Part 4, concludes as a primarily meditative retreat. Included is a series of pointing-out instructions drawing critical distinctions between the mind and pristine awareness, between conditioned consciousness and primordial consciousness, and other fundamental distinctions within the Dzogchen view. These instructions are followed by detailed teachings on the final stage of Dzogchen practice known as the direct crossing-over to spontaneous actualization (tögal), which comes to its fruition in the achievement of various manifestations of the rainbow body. Finally, an oral commentary will be offered on the Lake-Born Vajra’s concluding teachings on the six transitional phases (bardo), including dream yoga.

Please note that due to the nature of the teachings, the content of this retreat is available only to students who have complete Part 1


Be sure to register for our upcoming Wisdom Dharma Chats episode this March!

Join us for a special episode of Wisdom Dharma Chats with Yongey Mingur Rinpoche, on Sunday, March 24 at 10:30 AM EDT. Please note this is not during our usual Wednesday evening time.

Born in the Himalayan border regions between Tibet and Nepal, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche is a rising star among the new generation of Tibetan Buddhist teachers. His candid, often humorous accounts of his personal difficulties have endeared him to audiences around the world.

During this Wisdom Dharma Chat host, Daniel Aitken, and Yongey Mingur Rinpoche will discuss Dorje Drolö, a Buddhist practice meant specifically for use during difficult times in human history, as well as Rinpoche’s upcoming teachings in Nepal this June, and much more. To register to watch this Wisdom Dharma Chat live over Zoom, register here.


If you weren’t able to join us for out first Wisdom Dharma Chats of the year, with special guest, Peter Skilling, you can now watch the recording. Peter is a special lecturer at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, and an honorary associate, Department of Indian Sub-Continental Studies, University of Sydney, Australia. Until his retirement in 2017, he was a professor of the French School of Asian Studies (EFEO) based in Bangkok. He is an honorary member of the Siam Society, Bangkok, and in 2017 he was elected an honorary fellow of the Asiatic Society of Mumbai. He has published widely on the Buddhist literature, history, and epigraphy of South and Southeast Asia. During this Wisdom Dharma Chat host Daniel Aitken and Peter discuss Peter’s new anthology, Buddha’s Words for Tough Times, and more. 

In-Depth, Plus, and All-Access Members are invited to read Buddha’s Words for Tough Times in advance here in the reading room.

Discover all of the books in our Reading Room under the “Explore” menu on our website. Books in our Reading Room are available exclusively to Plus, All-Access, and In-Depth members.

New and Featured in the Reading Room

Saraha’s Spontaneous Songs
by Klaus-Dieter Mathes and Péter-Dániel Szántó

“This is the most important book on Saraha in a generation—and arguably in the past sixty years. Saraha, the ‘Great Brahman,’ is a key poet and theorizer of Indian tantric Buddhism and a vital figure for Tibetan Buddhists, who consider him the human source of their teachings on mahāmudrā, the great seal. He remains, however, elusive to modern scholars. With Saraha’s Spontaneous Songs, Klaus-Dieter Mathes and Péter-Dániel Szántó help to dispel some of the fog surrounding the Saraha, providing fresh editions and translations of the key South Asian and Tibetan texts that contain his greatest work, the Treasury of Dohās (Dohākoṣa), in some cases drawing on previously unstudied manuscripts. Their philology is first-rate, their translations are precise yet readable, and their introduction and notes provide an informed perspective on who Saraha may have been and what he may have taught. Saraha’s Spontaneous Songs will be the foundation for any serious study of Saraha and his Treasury of Dohās for many decades to come, and all students of South Asian and Tibetan Buddhism should be profoundly grateful to Mathes and Szántó for having collaborated on this landmark work.”—Roger R. Jackson, author of Mind Seeing Mind


Ocean of Attainments
translated by Yael Bentor and Penpa Dorjee

“Yael Bentor and Penpa Dorjee have excelled. Not only is this translation of a high standard, it is preceded by an introductory essay that covers in great depth the essential components of a successful creation-stage meditation, such as the process and rationale behind offsetting ordinary appearance with divine pride, the necessity of using mental consciousness over sensory consciousnesses, the sequence and functions of the conceptual cognition and direction, and much more. For anyone inspired by creation-stage meditation, this work on the Guhyasamāja Tantra, the king of tantras, is essential reading.”—Gavin Kilty, translator of Tsongkhapa’s Lamp to Illuminate the Five Stages


Also in Your Reading Room
Exclusively for In-Depth, Plus, and All-Access members

New Releases & Back in Stock

The following books were released in January, are available to purchase early on our website, or are now back in stock:


This episode of the Wisdom Podcast, recorded live as a Wisdom Dharma Chat features special guest John Brehm. John is the author of several books of poems, The Poetry of Impermanence, Mindfulness, and Joy and The Dharma of Poetry, Sea of Faith, Help Is On the Way, and No Day at the Beach. He is the associate editor of The Oxford Book of American Poetry and his poems have appeared in Poetry, The Southern Review, New Ohio Review, The Sun, The Gettysburg Review, Gulf Coast, The Writer’s Almanac, The Norton Introduction to Literature, Best American Poetry, and many other journals and anthologies. He lives in Portland, Oregon, and teaches for Literary Arts and Mountain Writers Series in Portland and for the Lighthouse Writers Workshop in Denver, Colorado.

In this episode, host Daniel Aitken and John discuss:

  • John’s process for writing poetry;
  • The art of appreciative reading and how to incorporate this in your practice; 
  • John selects poems from his newest collection, Dharma Talk, to read and guides us through reflecting on them; and
  • much more!


In-Depth, Plus, and All-Access members, April marks a new Gompa Wisdom Teaching so don’t miss out on this chance to learn from Venerable Khenpo Dr. Ngawang Jorden in this Gompa Wisdom Teaching on ‘Cultivating Method and Realizing Wisdom’. In the first week of this course, devoted to method, Khenpo Jorden gives teachings on mindfulness and introspection. Without these two qualities, it is impossible to make significant progress on the path. It is therefore important to learn how to cultivate these skilfully, not only in meditation but also in daily life, in order to establish continuity in one’s practice. The teaching will be based on two chapters of Shantideva’s ‘The Way of the Bodhisattva’ (Bodhicaryavatara) and will include essential meditation instructions.

In the second week, Khenpo Jorden explores two core areas for the development of wisdom: dependent arising and emptiness. The Buddha’s teachings on dependent arising are the foundation for attaining liberating insight into the nature of ultimate reality. These teachings explain how things come to appear in the world and, most significantly, how we are caught in a net of suffering and dissatisfaction and how we might liberate ourselves from this net of suffering and dissatisfaction. April marks a new Gompa Wisdom Teaching so don’t miss out on this chance to learn from Venerable Khenpo Dr. Ngawang Jorden.


This episode of the Wisdom Podcast, recorded live as a Wisdom Dharma Chat features special guest, Thupten Jinpa. Jinpa-la was educated in the classical Tibetan monastic academia and received the highest academic degree of Geshe Lharam (equivalent to a doctorate in divinity). He also holds a BA in philosophy and a PhD in religious studies, both from the University of Cambridge, England. Since 1985, he has been the principal translator to the Dalai Lama, accompanying him to the United States, Canada, and Europe. Jinpa-la is currently the president and editor-in-chief of the Institute of Tibetan Classics, a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to translating key Tibetan classics into contemporary languages. He also currently chairs the Mind and Life Institute and the Compassion Institute. During this episode, host Daniel Aitken, and Jinpa-la discuss his latest translation work in the Library of Tibetan Classics series, Stages of the Path and the Oral Transmission, how he chose to structure Stages of the Path and the Oral Transmission, his Wisdom Academy course, How the Mind Works, and much more!

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