The Maine Retreat

Maine Elective Classes 2020

Morning Mindful Movement & Optional Afternoon Yoga Class
Daily Movement

Linda Sparrowe

While sitting meditation is a big component of our program, it is also helpful to work with mindful movement practice as well as with stillness. This year we will once again be incorporating gentle movement as a component of our morning group sitting practice. We will also have the option to work further with yoga during our our 4-5 pm open period. You do not need to bring anything for the morning movement sessions but if you want to participate in the optional afternoon yoga class, you will need to bring your own yoga mat.


Linda Sparrowe is the former editor of Yoga International and Yoga Journal magazines, and has been teaching, talking and writing about yoga for more than 20 years. Certified at the 500-hour level through OM Yoga in New York City, she specializes in yoga for women’s health issues and in bringing the deeper teachings of yoga to bear on our everyday lives. You can find more information about Linda on her website

The Power of Speech

Carolyn Gimian

Language is our human heritage.  Other creatures bark or neigh, but we have a very special gift known as “language.” So language is a very important gift that human beings have developed.  
~ Chogyam Trungpa

In this class, we will examine many elements of speech and communication, exploring how we use language and how others use it, as well as exploring contemplative disciplines related to speech.  These will include the Six Points of Mindful Speech developed by Chogyam Trungpa, as well as the practice of elocution that he introduced. We will also explore how to unlock the power of speech as mantra, or sacred incantation, and as onomatopoeia: embodying the energy and power inherent in words.

We will be reading poetry, giving short speeches, enunciating vowels and consonants, and finding delight and humor in the disciplines of speech.


Carolyn Gimian will be teaching the class, along with guests and friends. She was trained by Chogyam Trungpa and empowered to teach elocution by him.  She is the editor of The Collected Works of Chogyam Trungpa and other books by Trungpa Rinpoche. For more information on Trungpa Rinpoche’s approach to elocution and Carolyn’s training, please see Elocution Lessons Part 1 and Part 2 on The Chronicles of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche.

Bodhicitta and the 46 Ways of Falling Down
An Exploration of the Grey Areas of the Bodhisattva Vow

Derek Kolleeny and Chris Willcox

This course will focus on the ethical components of the Bodhisattva Precepts, especially the 46 secondary vows, or downfalls. These range from relatively straightforward (“Not answering questions”) to nuanced (“Not performing evil actions even though it is permitted when one has compassion and there is a need”), challenging our simplistic, black-and-white notions of good and bad. 

Our sources will be primarily the Mahayana bodhisattva-bodhicitta vow sections of Jamgon Kongtrul’s Treasury of Knowledge and Perfect Conduct, a commentary by Jikdral Dudjom Rinpoche on a root text by Pema Wangyi Gyalpo, Ascertaining the Three Vows. Reading materials will be made available. 


Derek Kolleeny became a student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1976. He was a member of the Nalanda Translation Committee and worked in External Affairs at Vajradhatu for many years. Derek is the teacher at Rimé Shedra NYC and is a senior teacher at the Westchester Buddhist Center which is dedicated to the tradition of the Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche.


Chris Willcox is an artist and dharma student in the tradition of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche based in Los Angeles, California. He began his Buddhist practice and study in 2009 at Kagyu Samye Ling in Scotland, and later continued in Brooklyn, New York, studying at Rimé Shedra with Derek Kolleeny and running a small study group out of his apartment. He completed his teacher training at the Profound Treasury Retreat in 2018, where he is returning to teach for the second year.

#BirthDenialOldAgeSickness&Death WT?!

Valerie Lorig and Paul McIntyre

This class offers an opportunity to explore contemplative approaches to self and others in relation to health and illness. Through short talks, facilitated discussions, and contemplative and experiential exercises, we will engage with questions such as: Is one either healthy or ill? How do we skillfully work with our own emotions, hopes and fears? How can we be helpful to ourselves or others suffering from dis-ease? What can living teach us about dying? Bring your curiosity and join us as we explore.


Valerie Lorig, LPC, is a long-time Buddhist practitioner who worked closely with Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. As a full-time faculty member at Naropa University, she teaches classes on Buddhist psychology, meditation, compassion, somatic psychology, and trauma. Valerie practices contemplative psychotherapy at Auspicious Coincidence Counseling in Boulder, CO. In her spare time, she can be found practicing calligraphy, attempting to learn Spanish, and enjoying her three sassy children.


Paul McIntyre is a physician at Hospice Halifax and a Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He lives in Halifax with his wife, Dominique. They have two daughters who are attending university.

Tigers, Snow Lions, Garudas…Oh my!
Manifesting the Qualities of the Shambhala Warrior in Everyday Life

Mikayla Sanford and Cathy Zimmerman

In the tradition of Shambhala, we cultivate genuineness, gentleness and fearlessness so we can actually bring benefit to our world. This class will explore the four dignities of the Shambhala Warrior, or the qualities of meek, perky, outrageous and inscrutable and how we can manifest them and apply them to our everyday life. We will look into how we, as warriors-in-training, can work with the obstacles on the path to bring alive the vision of a more benevolent society.


Mikayla Sanford was raised in the lineage of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. She first received mediation instruction at the age of eight and has been teaching in contemplative education for over 14 years. In addition to teaching at the Buddhist inspired Alaya Preschool in Boulder, CO, she has designed curriculum for numerous programs in the United States, Europe and in Asia. Mikayla received her Bachelor’s degree from The New School University, New York. She has also studied dance, archery, fine arts and photography, and child development extensively. 


Cathy Zimmerman has been a student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche since 1974. She is also a contemplative psychotherapist with a private practice in Boulder, CO for the last 20 years. In her private practice, she brings together the view and skillful means of the Buddhist path with contemporary psychology. She has been an adjunct faculty member at Naropa University since 1999 in the Transpersonal and Contemplative psychology graduate programs, and also leads Maitri retreats for Naropa students. She is a mother of two adult daughters and two young grandsons. She is an artist, working with collage in mixed media and painting in oils.

Singing from the Heart/Characters who Dwell Within
Exploring How Practice Supports Creative Action

Meredith Monk, Lanny Harrison and Michele Laporte

This class will involve sessions exploring the myriad aspects of the human voice led by Meredith Monk, and movement improvisations and character investigations led by Lanny Harrison. These forms will alternate and merge as participants discover both their individual and group voices and delve into their imaginations.  By exploring our retreat environment with clarified perception, Michele Laporte will lead participants in preparing the space for these creative expressions.


Meredith Monk is a composer, singer, director/choreographer, filmmaker, and creator of new opera, music-theater works, films and installations. Recognized as one of the most unique and influential artists of our time, she is a pioneer of what is now called “extended vocal technique” and “interdisciplinary performance”. Celebrated internationally, she recently received three of the highest honors bestowed to a living artist in the United States: induction into the American Academy of Arts and Letters (2019), the 2017 Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize, and a 2015 National Medal of Arts from President Barack Obama. Meredith first encountered Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche in the mid-1970s and is a longtime Buddhist practitioner. 


Lanny Harrison, performer, teacher, poet, and visual artist began her career in S. Yakim’s NY Pantomime Theater.  In 1969 she joined Meredith Monk & The House. Over the years she has created one-woman shows and collaborated with dancers, musicians, actors, and visual artists. She has taught at Naropa University; founded kids and adult workshops at West Kortright Centre; teaches a course entitled “Performing Stories: East Meets West” at NYU’s Gallatin Division; and has an ongoing workshop “Characters in Motion” in NYC. She is currently birthing a book, with editor Jane Zipp, about her workshops. Also in the works is a new show, “Threshold”, Robin Daniels and Christine Alicino. Lanny has been a student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche since 1971. She is a certified Meditation Instructor and Dharma Art teacher.


Michele Laporte is an illustrator, painting conservator, graphic designer, consultant on Asian art, meditation instructor, and avid cyclist. For several years she has been teaching a course on climate change and sustainability at Parsons School of Design, and she serves on the board of the Manhattan Land Trust, an organization in support of community gardens. When she is not grading homework, she can often be found cramming for the next discussion of The Profound Treasury Book Club of New York. Due to a twist of tremendous good fortune, this will be her sixth year of participation at the Profound Treasury Retreat in Maine.