the lotus represents our enlightened state

Cornwall Buddhists

The Karma Kagyu Tradition

The Kagyu Lineage is an unbroken line of oral transmissions from teacher to student for several hundred years. The present head of the Karma Kagyu tradition is H.H. 17th Gyalwa Karmapa Ogyen Drodul Trinley Dorje. Many great teachers form part of the Lineage; what follows is a very brief historical summary. The lineages of the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism derives primarily from Marpa Chokyi Lodoe (1012-1099).

Marpa studied at the feet of 108 spiritual masters and adepts, principally Naropa (taught by Tilopa) and Maitripa. He brought the lineages to Tibet, passing them on to his foremost disciple, Milarepa (1040-1123), the most celebrated and accomplished of Tibet’s tantric yogis, who achieved the ultimate goal of enlightenment in one lifetime.

Among Milarepa’s disciples, Gampopa (1084-1161), also known as Dakpo Lhaje, and Rechungpa (1084-1161) were the most illustrious. The former received the teaching and practice of Mahamudra and the Six Yogas of Naropa from Milarepa, and combined them into one lineage. This came to be known as Dakpo Kagyu, the mother lineage of the Kagyu tradition.

Karma Kagyu was founded by the 1st Karmapa Dusum Khyenpa (1110-1193). This tradition has remained strong, in large part due to the presence of an unbroken line of reincarnations of the founder, the successive Karmapas.

Dying as best one can

Weekend Retreat with Ken Holmes

Practical teachings for the end of life from Atisha’s Seven Point Mind Training

Saturday 1st December – Sunday 2nd Decemberr

at Roselidden Farm, Trevenen Bal, Helston, Cornwall, TR13 OPT

Of the various Buddhist teachings helping one prepare for death, the most appropriate and successful for the modern Western practiser are those from Atisha’s famous Seven Points. Ken will take us through the various areas of very practical work, dealing with family, possessions and relationships on the outside but mainly one’s own experience and thoughts on the inside. The course will include a simulation of a peaceful death. Although vital for anyone engaged in the Seven Points process, this retreat will contain much helpful advice, reflection and practice accessible to anyone. Our experience is that it not only prepares for death but awakens one brilliantly to life.

Face of Ken Holmes, the weekend's teacher

Ken's life is spent teaching dharma and meditation in Samye Dzongs in Europe and Africa, as well as occasionally interpreting for visiting Tibetan lamas. He was a founder member of the Scottish Inter-Faith Council and has worked with the British Cabinet Office and the European Community on training programmes. In 2002, he represented Buddhism at meetings in Brussels to discuss religious representation in the new European constitution.

Ken's travels through the Middle East and Afghanistan took him to India and on to Kagyu Samye Ling in Scotland, which has been his base for the past 45 years. His life has been devoted to making Tibetan Buddhist meditation and philosophy available to the Western world and to assisting the late Akong Rinpoche. With his wife Katia, he has co-translated some of the main Kagyu teaching texts into English, as well as much of the liturgy used in daily practice. Ken’s main dharma teachers included the 16th Karmapa, the Tai Situpa, Gyaltsab Rinpoche, Akong Rinpoche, Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche and Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoc he.

Non-residential, with some accommodation available for those traveling from afar.

Please bring vegetarian lunch to share

Suggested donation £40 for the weekend, £25 per day

For further information and booking, please contact Sophie Muir

Please display a Poster if you can.

Sophie leads retreats in Cornwall, Wales and elsewhere and offers a direct and simple approach based in ‘Bodhicitta Heart’. An artist and mum with 2 young sons, Sophie works teaching T’ai Chi and Mindfulness for adults and in schools.

Contact Sophie Muir


At Mawgan village, near Helston, drive past the Post Office/Spar on your left, then the Church on left and follow the road down hill to the Helford River; cross the 1st bridge at the first creek and just before Gear Bridge on the 2nd creek, turn right and take the left hand gate, following the rough track upstream to Gear Mill at the end. Please turn your car on arrival and park to allow others space – Thank–you! There is some parking on the road along the creek with room for one car only just outside the gate.

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