Apprenticeship with Ngala Nor'dzin Pamo and Ngala '-Dzin Tridral
Ngala Nor’dzin Pamo and Ngala ’ö-Dzin Tridral

embracing experience as the path of liberation

Vajrayana apprenticeship with a teaching couple of the Aro Tradition

Ngakma Nor’dzin Pamo & Ngakpa ’ö-Dzin Tridral

apprenticeship

Present moments are infinite. They will never end. We will never cease to have opportunities to start again. We will never cease to have opportunities to experience presence.Spacious Passion—Ngakma Nor’dzin

Apprenticeship within the Aro Tradition continues the ancient practice of small groups of students practising and studying with their Lamas. The Vajrayana path of transformation is well suited to people who wish to practise Buddhism within the context of ordinary life—working, home-making, living in a relationship, having children—and are inspired to discover their life circumstances as the path to realisation.

opportunities afforded by apprenticeship

Through the practice of the religion of Dharma one discovers that the nature of being has already been understood by one’s teachers, and that it can be discovered for ourselves through the methods of practice they reveal.Spacious Passion—Ngakma Nor’dzin

Apprenticeship offers the opportunity to experience a warm and informal relationship with Lamas Nor’dzin and ’ö-Dzin. Participation is encouraged in regular apprentice-only retreats. These occur at the Lamas’ home in Cardiff, and also at a yogic encampment in Shropshire. Lamas Nor’dzin and ’ö-Dzin also teach at other events in the UK, as well as teaching in Germany, France and Austria.

Apprentices have access to the Aro apprentice website which provides a variety of resources for practice and study at the apprentice level.

Lamas Nor’dzin and ’ö-Dzin have been Buddhist practitioners throughout their married life and have raised two sons to adulthood. They have a wealth of experience of practising within the context of working and family life. Ngakpa ’ö-Dzin works full-time at Cardiff University and Ngakma Nor’dzin dedicates her time to apprentices, the Aro Tradition and her work as an author. In the Aro Tradition, the Lama teaching couple give transmission through dynamic personal instruction; apprentice group question and answer sessions; shared meditation and yogic song; and through the simple spontaneity of informal situations.

the requirements of apprenticeship

openness

Through the development of spaciousness our patterning can become totally open and transparent.Spacious Passion—Ngakma Nor’dzin

Apprenticeship combines the commitment to being guided, with freedom and personal responsibility. To become an apprentice is to be willing to change, and to be open to having views and habit patterns challenged. The Lamas offer pastoral guidance based in Dharma, but apprentices remain responsible for their spiritual development and life choices. Courage and enthusiasm are required to embrace the view that every situation is available for transformation into the path of Vajrayana. This may require us to dissolve our prejudice and habitual response into emptiness and let go of justification. Openness and the development of awareness is the internal commitment of an apprentice.

kindness

… we must live our lives as warriors: fearless, without need of reward or recognition, honourably upholding the cause of kindness and awareness …Spacious Passion—Ngakma Nor’dzin

An harmonious and genuine relationship with one’s vajra brothers and sisters is essential to enable transmission to occur. Apprentices study and practice together in an atmosphere of kindness, good humour and friendship. The apprentice group includes people of diverse personalities, backgrounds and lifestyles sharing a common interest in Buddhist practice, teachings, and lineage. Apprentices engage with joyful enthusiasm and vividness in all aspects of life.

Apprenticeship can be joyful and bewildering, supportive and challenging, relaxed and demanding. Apprenticeship can be very gentle, or stretch the apprentice to their capacity, depending on what the apprentice requests. Apprentices take responsibility for balancing being kind to themselves and embracing change enthusiastically. The development of kindness is the external commitment of an apprentice.

making the teachings accessible

Part of the practical commitment of apprenticeship is a financial contribution. The purpose of apprenticeship fees is to provide an income that enables Lamas Nor’dzin and ’ö-Dzin to dedicate time to apprentices, teaching, writing and practice. It is important that financial hardship should never prevent access to the Vajrayana teachings for anyone with serious commitment, and alternative methods of contribution can be discussed where necessary.

what to do next

If you are interested in applying for apprenticeship with Lamas Nor’dzin and ’ö-Dzin please contact the apprenticeship secretary by email at: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

It is recommended that you talk to other apprentices and attend one or more open teaching events before applying for apprenticeship. This will enable you to gain some understanding of the nature of apprenticeship.

Please read Ngakma Nor’dzin’s books: Spacious Passion and Relaxing into Meditation. Both are available through Aro Books worldwide. Spacious Passion is also available to read on-line.

Please also read the valuable information available at the Aro Tradition websites: Aro Community; Approaching Aro; Aro Encyclopædia.