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Los Angeles, CA

Shambhala Art can be seen as a process, a product, and an arts education program.  As a process, it brings wakefulness and awareness to the creative and viewing processes through the integration of contemplation and meditation.  As a product, it is art that wakes people up. Shambhala Art is also an international non-profit arts education program based on the Dharma Art teachings of the late Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, the founder of Shambhala Buddhism, Shambhala International, and Naropa Institute.  Shambhala Art is a division of Shambhala and is presided over by his son and heir, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. This program is taught by trained and authorized Shambhala Art teachers.


Educator Training

Shambhala Art provides the opportunity for dedicated practitioners to become Shambhala Art Educators.

With a dharma art series, you are using what’s available in order to teach people. There needs to be some basic level with meditation that happens initially—just introducing people to their basic awareness mind, and so forth. Now they may actually want to decide, “This is something interesting and I would like to know more about it. In fact, I want it to become part of my life. How do I that? What exactly do I do?
— Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche

There are three levels of Educator: Assistant Teachers, Teachers of Parts 1-3, and Teachers of 1-5.

There are nearly a hundred authorized teachers across the globe who have taken the Shambhala Art Educator Trainings. Shambhala Art authorizations prepare aspiring teachers to:

  1. Coordinate Shambhala Art Day, an annual festival held on or near the Spring equinox.

  2. Conduct study groups and classes on the foundations of Shambhala Art, particularly the book True Perception and the three video collections on dharma art from Kalapa Media.

  3. Offer Parts 1 - 3 of the Shambhala Art curriculum.

  4. Offer Parts 4 - 5 of the Shambhala Art curriculum.

  5. Support programs such as nyinthüns and weekthüns as a facilitator or co-teacher offering a contemplative art component.

At the end of Educator Training, the program directors determine the authorization level of participants. The following table summarizes offerings by level of authorization.

Can offer


Assistant teachers

1, 2, 3 [if co-Teacher is a Parts 1-3 Teacher]

Parts 1 - 3 Teachers

1, 2, 3, [4, 5 if co-Teacher is a Part 1-5 Teacher]

Parts 1 - 5 Teachers

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Requirements and Next Steps to Become an Educator

Attending Educator Training begins with meeting the following prerequisites:

  1. Completion of all five parts of the Shambhala Art training curriculum.

  2. Authorization as a Shambhala Guide or Shambhala Path Meditation Instructor.

  3. Completion of Enlightened Society Assembly (ESA) (and by extension ESA's prerequisites for attendance).

  4. A demonstrable and on-going personal practice of the principles of Shambhala Art.

When an Educator Training is offered, aspiring educators submit an application that is reviewed by the program directors. Educators will be notified of their acceptance on a rolling basis. Acceptance into the program is not a guarantee of authorization, and complete attendance at all program components is a requirement for authorization.

Educators who are seeking to retrain or to promote to another level of authorization (e.g. Assistant Teacher to Parts 1 - 3) will also need to complete the above process.

Authorization for Parts 4 - 5

Authorization for Parts 4 - 5 requires additional requirements and training:

  1. Attendance at Sacred World Assembly (SWA) (and by extension SWA's requirements for attendance).

  2. Taught Parts 1 - 3 at least once in the last 5 years.

  3. A demonstrable and on-going personal practice of the principles of Shambhala Art, as well as demonstrated work to share the Shambhala Art teachings with others.

Trainings to teach Parts 4 - 5 are offered infrequently. Those interested in receiving authorization for Parts 1 - 3 should reach out to Shambhala Art to express a desire for this training.