Pema Chödrön is an American Buddhist nun in the lineage of Chögyam Trungpa. She is resident teacher at Gampo Abbey in Nova Scotia, the first Tibetan monastery in North America established for Westerners. She is the author of many books and audiobooks, including the best-selling When Things Fall Apart and Don't Bite the Hook. Learn more about her and her work here.
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Books & Audio
Heart Advice for Difficult Times
The beautiful practicality of her teaching has made Pema Chödrön one of the most beloved of contemporary American spiritual authors among Buddhists and non-Buddhists alike. A collection of talks she gave between 1987 and 1994, the book is a treasury… Read More
Convertir el miedo en fortaleza en tiempos dificiles
Pema Chödrön nos enseña que siempre tenemos la oportunidad de elegir: podemos permitir que las circunstancias de nuestras vidas nos endurezcan y nos hagan cada vez más resentidos y temerosos, o podemos dejar que nos ablanden y nos hagan más… Read More
en la incertidumbre y el cambio
Vivimos en épocas difíciles. En ocasiones la vida parece un río turbulento que amenaza con ahogarnos y destruir al mundo. ¿Por qué entonces no deberíamos aferrarnos a la certidumbre de la orilla —a nuestros patrones y hábitos familiares? Porque, según… Read More
Shambhala Publications Authors on the Path of Boundless Love
What is compassion? Much more than just being nice, compassion is about looking deeply at ourselves and others and recognizing the fundamental goodness we all share. It’s about opening up to the vulnerable space inside every one of us and… Read More
with Uncertainty and Change
We live in difficult times. Life sometimes seems like a roiling and turbulent river threatening to drown us and destroy the world. Why, then, shouldn’t we cling to the certainty of the shore—to our familiar patterns and habits? Because, Pema… Read More
Palabras sabias para momentos dificiles
Tenemos a nuestro alcance una oportunidad fundamental de felicidad que por lo general desperdiciamos, irónicamente, por estar atrapados en nuestros intentos por escapar del dolor y el sufrimiento. Pema Chödrön da un consejo compasivo y radical extraído de la sabiduría… Read More
A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva
Over the years, Pema Chödrön's books have offered readers an exciting new way of living: developing fearlessness, generosity, and compassion in all aspects of their lives. In this new book, she invites readers to venture further along the path of… Read More
And Other Lojong Teachings on Awakening Compassion and Fearlessness
For centuries Tibetan Buddhists have relied on a collection of fifty-nine pith teachings (called lojong in Tibetan) to help them develop wisdom and compassion amid the challenges of daily living. In this book Pema Chödrön introduces these transformative teachings and… Read More
Based on talks given during a one-month meditation retreat at Gampo Abbey, this book contains teachings that were intended to inspire and encourage practitioners to remain wholeheartedly awake to everything that occurs and to use the abundant material of daily… Read More
108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion
This book offers short, stand-alone readings designed to help us cultivate compassion and awareness amid the challenges of daily living. More than a collection of thoughts for the day, Comfortable with Uncertainty offers a progressive program of spiritual… Read More
A Guide to Fearlessness in Difficult Times
We always have a choice, Pema Chödrön teaches: We can let the circumstances of our lives harden us and make us increasingly resentful and afraid, or we can let them soften us and make us kinder. Here Pema provides the… Read More
Here is a treasury of 108 short selections from the best-selling books of Pema Chödrön, the beloved Buddhist nun. Designed for on-the-go inspiration, this collection offers teachings on: becoming fearless breaking free of destructive patterns developing patience, kindness, and… Read More
With war and violence flaring all over the world, many of us are left feeling vulnerable and utterly helpless. In this book Pema Chödrön draws on Buddhist teachings to explore the origins of aggression, hatred, and war, explaining that… Read More
Awakening the True Heart of Bravery
Many of us, without even realizing it, are dominated by fear. We might be aware of some of our fears—perhaps we are afraid of public speaking, of financial hardship, or of losing a loved one. Chögyam Trungpa shows us that… Read More
A Guide to Compassionate Living
Start Where You Are is an indispensable handbook for cultivating fearlessness and awakening a compassionate heart. With insight and humor, Pema Chödrön presents down-to-earth guidance on how we can "start where we are"—embracing rather than denying the painful aspects… Read More
About the Author
Pema Chödrön is an American Buddhist nun in the lineage of Chögyam Trungpa. She is resident teacher at Gampo Abbey in Nova Scotia, the first Tibetan monastery in North America established for Westerners. She is the author of many books and audiobooks, including the best-selling When Things Fall Apart and Don't Bite the Hook.
Pema Chödrön was born Deirdre Blomfield-Brown in 1936, in New York City. She attended Miss Porter’s School in Connecticut and graduated from the University of California at Berkeley. She taught as an elementary school teacher for many years in both New Mexico and California. Pema has two children and three grandchildren.
While in her mid-thirties, Pema traveled to the French Alps and encountered Lama Chime Rinpoche, with whom she studied for several years. She became a novice nun in 1974 while studying with Lama Chime in London. His Holiness the Sixteenth Karmapa came to England at that time, and Pema received her ordination from him.
Pema first met her root teacher, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, in 1972. Lama Chime encouraged her to work with Rinpoche, and it was with him that she ultimately made her most profound connection, studying with him from 1974 until his death in 1987. At the request of the Sixteenth Karmapa, she received the full monastic ordination in the Chinese lineage of Buddhism in 1981 in Hong Kong.
Pema served as the director of Karma Dzong, in Boulder, until moving in 1984 to rural Cape Breton, Nova Scotia to be the director of Gampo Abbey. Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche asked her to work towards the establishment of a monastery for western monks and nuns.
Pema currently teaches in the United States and Canada and plans for an increased amount of time in solitary retreat under the guidance of Venerable Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche.
Videos & More
Pema Chodron with Bill Moyers (Part 2)
Pema Chodron with Bill Moyers (Part 3)
Pema Chodron with Bill Moyers (Part 4)
Pema Chodron with Bill Moyers (Part 5)
Pema Chodron with Bill Moyers (Part 6)