Program Details

Milarepa Day (with childcare)

February 24 / 8:30 AM - February 24 / 7:00 PM

Have you ever wondered what the mind of enlightenment is like? Come find out at this annual community retreat day during which we celebrate the enlightenment and life example of Milarepa, one of the most revered enlightened masters of the Kagyu lineage!

One of Trungpa Rinpoche's great translation efforts, the rendering into English of the 'songs of realization' of the greatest teachers of our Kagyu lineage was profoundly important. These were published as The Rain of Wisdom: The Vajra Songs of the Kagyu Gurus. We read aloud through the entire book, annually, on Milarepa Day, keeping functional silence so that we can soak our minds in the minds of the gurus. One gains from this a connection to the personal experiences of practice, realization, and instruction of the great gurus, who wrote them for that purpose, for our encouragement. They are pithy, profound, beautiful, and touching.

According to Trungpa Rinpoche: "Students are advised to read this book for instructions when their life is filled with disruption, uncertainty and neurosis. Even reading only one passage is better than going to a psychiatrist or taking a dose of aspirin. This is not a myth: from my personal experience, these songs do provide a staircase of liberation. They actually enable us to interrupt our personal subconscious gossip, awaken ourselves on the path, and energize ourselves so that we can help others."


  • 8:30 AM: opening session (we will begin promptly!)

  • 12:30 - 1:00 PM: silent brown bag lunch

  • 1:00 - approx. 7:00 PM: afternoon session (please bring an extra snack to cover if we run past dinner)

Tea will be provided throughout the day and you may take breaks as you need them.

While attending the entire day is a wonderful and powerful experience, you can participate for as much or as little as your schedule allows. If you need to arrive after the practice starts, or anytime you enter or leave the shrine room, please chant the Vajrasattva mantra (OM VAJRASATTVA HUM). Please bring a copy of The Rain of Wisdom if you have one (but there are extra copies at the Center if you don’t have one).

This program will take the place of the morning meditation and discussion that normally occurs on Sunday -- if you were planning to come to sit, come to this instead!

If you can volunteer as a reader (taking turns reading aloud from The Rain of Wisdom), or if you have any other questions, please contact Bret at

Childcare will be available throughout the day (8:30 AM - 7:00 PM, except during the lunch break). Please contact Robin ( or 425-442-4547) in advance if you know when your child will be at childcare, but drop-ins are also welcome.

Prerequisites: None (open to everyone).

Location: Seattle Shambhala Center, 3107 E Harrison St, Seattle.

Questions? Contact Bret at

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