Tara Mandala Retreat Center in Southwest Colorado

The following article is from the Spring, 1995 issue of the Snow Lion Newsletter and is for historical reference only. You can see this in context of the original newsletter here.

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Center for Teachings & Long-term Retreats

Tara Mandala is a retreat center located in SW Colorado. It was founded in late 1993 by Tsultrim Allione, M.A, and is devoted to the preservation and development of Buddhist traditions and wisdom lineages. Tsultrim Allione has been a Tibetan Buddhist practitioner for 27 years, and lived in Nepal and India in the late 60's and early 70's. She was the first American ordained as a nun by H.H. Karmapa in 1970. Several years later, she returned her vows and came back to the United States with a vision to create a retreat center and spread the wisdom of Tibetan Buddhism.

During the years she was raising her children she always kept this vision. She searched for land that would be conducive to in-depth meditation experiences, similar to that which existed in Tibet, and where it would be possible to experience profound silence and vast space. In October of 1993, a wild and beautiful piece of land which had these qualities was discovered near Pagosa Hot Springs.

The land encompasses 850 acres of mountains, canyons, dragon's back ridges, forests, and meadowsall filled with wildlife. Some areas contain ponds where the elk come to drink and other areas are densely wooded with Ponderosa pine and inhabited by black bears. At the center of this land is a breast-shaped peak from which spectacular views abound. The many hills and ridges rise to as much as 8100 feet. Fortunately the land is protected on several sides by National Forest and the Ute Reservation.

Tara Mandala sponsors large summer teachings and group retreats and is in the process of creating a retreat facility for long-term group retreats for twenty people and to provide space for all individuals wishing to experience hermitage. They primarily offer teachings in the Dzogchen lineage of Chogyal Namkhai Norbu, Rinpoche and sponsor teachers of various contemplative traditions.

Last year Tara Mandala sponsored several different teachings. Tsok Nyi Rinpoche came to consecrate the land in July.

This Year's Teachings

Teachings this year include a ten day vipassana retreat, a Dzogchen retreat on the nature of mind, a Tara dance retreat, tantric practice retreats and elders from the Ute Reservation will return to share their wisdom. Tara Mandala will also sponsor several weekends of Practicing Permaculture where they will begin to restore areas of the land that have been damaged from logging, by planting trees and setting up check dams.

Tara Mandala is one hour east of Durango, two and one-half hours northwest of Santa Fe and close to all of the historic attractions of the Four Corners Area. Pagosa Hot Springs is renowned as the hottest, deepest and most healing of the mineral springs in the USA There is also a Tara Mandala Bookstore located next to the hot springs. For information, contact: Tara Mandala, PO Box 3040, Pagosa Hot Springs, CO 81147, 970-264-6177, fa x# 970-264-6169, e-mail 75402,1127@compuserve.com.

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