Learning Programs

Path of Meditation Level One

Key Learning Points

Calm abiding meditation

Understanding the mind

Introduction to core Buddhist principles

Importance of ethics

Holistic approach to meditation

Cultivation of renunciation and bodhicitta

This home practice program guides one in a clear progression to develop a mature, strong and stable practice of meditation. The program covers a wide variety of methods and meditation techniques, presented sequentially. We explain key points of the Dharma and encourage and support your reflection. Phakchok Rinpoche and instructors give specific practice instructions for each month of practice. Reflection questions and exercises help to reinforce the teachings.


We warmly invite you to The Path of Meditation Home Practice Program. This path is suitable for both absolute beginners and for those who wish to rededicate themselves to meditation practice. This program does not presuppose any background in Buddhist practice or meditation. We encourage all those with sincere interest to  take advantage of this structured approach. Here, Phakchok Rinpoche guides us gradually through an experiential practice of the path.

Meditation Benefits Us in Two Ways

  • First, on the relative level, meditation helps us develop a balanced and healthy life.
  • And ultimately, we connect with our own basic goodness, our awakened Buddha nature.

What Is the Path of Meditation and Mahamudra?

Buddhist teachings include 84,000 varieties. These include the foundational Theravada traditions, the Mahayana sutra traditions, and the Vajrayana lineages. And all of these teach a variety of meditation techniques. In this program, Phakchok Rinpoche encourages students to take up the practice of Mahamudra meditation.

And why should we do that? In a recent teaching, Rinpoche observed:

Maha means great mind. Mudra means all-pervasive. When we are first learning meditation, it is important to know two things. First, the mind is the base of happiness and suffering. Our mind is not reliable as as a source of calmness. It always changes… The most important thing to understand is that when the mind is calm, the mind is happy. When the mind is not calm, the mind is not happy… These differences are very important things for the meditator to know. Not just knowing in the mind (intellectually), but having the experience.

The second thing is the nature of the mind. When you recognize the nature of the mind, it is very peaceful. In that moment of recognition, you are the happiest person. It’s very strange to say that, but that’s how it is… When you recognize nature of mind…that is called seeing or recognizing, or having a short glimpse of Buddha.

Here, in the following video clip, Rinpoche explains why he sees value in teaching the Mahamudra path of gradual progress. As Rinpoche explains, he usually teaches students this path over a period of three to five years.

We can reflect on the following advantages:

  • students take time to develop understanding and experience
  • we gain glimpses of realization that prepare us for other practices
  • we spend time on knowing our minds and practicing
  • this path requires less time in study–the focus is meditation

What Is Meditation?

Meditation is not only about sitting on a cushion. In the video clip below, Rinpoche reminds us that meditation is holistic. Throughout this program, we will practice integrating the insights from meditation in all aspects of our life.

What Are the Benefits of Meditation?

As modern people, we are very busy and have so many options. So, why should we meditate? And does meditation really benefit me and my loved ones?

In this video clip, Rinpoche explains that meditation helps us to grow in an intelligent way. Moreover, he mentions the following benefits of practice:

  • calmness and peacefulness
  • a more relaxed, natural and loose approach to life
  • space to see what is going on in our mind and emotional states
  • happier mind-set
  • less stress–more able to handle problems
  • reduced ego-clinging
  • less hope and fear
  • transformation–real change in our way of being
  • gaining realization of emptiness
  • ultimate awakening/enlightenment

About Phakchok Rinpoche

Phakchok Rinpoche was born in 1981. He holds the lineage of the Profound Treasures of Chokgyur Lingpa. This lineage is part of the Nyingma School of Early Translations. Moreover, Rinpoche is one of the throne-holders of the Riwoche Taklung Kagyu Lineage. Phakchok Rinpoche’s primary root gurus are his grandfather, the late Kyabje Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, and the late Kyabje Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche.

Phakchok Rinpoche.

Rinpoche received a traditional education and a Khenpo degree from the Dzongsar Shedra in India. He also received the complete Chokling New Treasures lineage transmission from Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche and Kyabje Tsikey Chokling Rinpoche. Finally, he received the Great Perfection lineage from Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche.

Teaching Style

Rinpoche addresses the needs of his audience using a very direct teaching style. He presents the authentic Dharma, respecting the transmission of the lineage and past masters. At the same time, he expresses authentic teachings in simple language. He interweaves modern examples with traditional training. Therefore people with diverse backgrounds and interests easily relate to and appreciate his teachings. In this home practice program, Rinpoche teaches in English.

Rinpoche speaks directly to the concerns of modern students. He often uses humor and personal stories to touch our hearts. Additionally, Rinpoche has traveled widely and taught to people from different backgrounds. And, he conducts many question and answer sessions with students during his travels. Therefore, he understands problems and issues facing students today. Moreover, he accepts that students have busy lives and many demands. Thus, in this course he often gives short practice tips designed for busy people.

Balance in Life

Rinpoche is a yogi practitioner with both a family and the responsibility of monastic institutions. Thus, he is deeply familiar with multiple demands. His own life defines what it means to be a dharma practitioner in today’s world. Therefore he regularly emphasizes that all practitioners need to cultivate balance in their lives.

Principles of Practice

We progress best when we build a base of study and contemplation. With this foundation, we can understand the profound views of the Buddha’s teachings. Next, we also must do the practice. Then we can begin to genuinely reduce ego clinging. Also, we learn how to transform our negative emotions. In this process, we use a wide range of methods and practices.

Further, we address the needs of our families, communities and the larger world by participating in altruistic activity. This activity arises as the expression of the compassion and wisdom cultivated in practice. These are some of the main principles that Rinpoche practices and teaches to his own students.

The Path of Meditation Home Practice Program presents classic, authentic instructions in short, clear modules. In this way, students may properly reflect on the message of the instructions. Most importantly, students learn exactly what to practice. In this way, we develop confidence in our ability to gain experience and realization.


Phakchok Rinpoche designed the Path Of Meditation Practice Chart that outlines the entire path. Here, in a clear visual one-page map, we can see the gradual and natural unfolding of practice.

The major stages of the path evolve as follows:

  • First, we begin meditation training by practicing calm abiding meditation.
  • Next, we progress step-by-step to clear seeing, or insight, meditation.
  • Finally, we begin the main practice: supreme clear seeing

This home practice program follows the practice chart. We offer both video and audio teachings. In these, Rinpoche instructs us on the important themes of the Buddha’s teachings. And most importantly, he focuses on practice instruction in meditation itself. Throughout the process, we also provide reflection exercises and contemplation questions to help you process the material you are studying.



Course Curriculum

An Overview of the Path of Meditation FREE 00:00:00
Mahamudra: An Introduction 00:00:00
Advice as You Begin 00:00:00
Advice for the Home Practice Program 00:00:00
How to Practice During This Program 00:00:00
Setting Up a Tibetan Buddhist Shrine 00:00:00
The Treasury of Blessings: Buddha Shakyamuni Practice 00:00:00
Path of Meditation Chart 00:00:00
The Ground
What Is Dharma? 00:00:00
The Four Mind Changings 00:00:00
Refuge and Bodhichitta 00:00:00
Dza Patrul Rinpoche’s Teaching on Refuge 00:00:00
Patrul Rinpoche’s Essential Instructions on Bodhicitta 00:00:00
Study and Reflection 00:00:00
Source of the Buddhadharma and the Mahamudra Lineage 00:00:00
Connecting to the Lineage Masters 00:00:00
Masters of Mahamudra 00:00:00
How to Validate the Dharma FREE 00:00:00
Essence of the Ground 00:00:00
Seeing Faults: Notice, But Don’t Judge 00:00:00
The Mechanism of Samsara 00:00:00
Enhancement Dispelling Obstacles 00:00:00
The Path
Right Motivation 00:00:00
Five Experiences of a Meditator FREE 00:00:00
One-Pointedness 00:00:00
The Great Master Attitude 00:00:00
Mind Becoming Functional 00:00:00
Daily Life Training 00:00:00
Posture and Seven Points of Vairocana 00:00:00
Training Guidelines 00:00:00
Month 1: Pure and Impure Physical Support FREE 00:00:00
Month 2: Focusing on the Breath 00:00:00
Month 3: Vase Breath 00:00:00
Vase Breath Technique Demonstration FREE 00:00:00
Month 4: Vajra Breath 00:00:00
Month 5-6: Pure Mental Object 00:00:00
Month 7-9: Natural State Śamatha 00:00:00
Month 10-12: Tightening and Loosening 00:00:00
Supplication: Enhancing Your Practice Through the Düsum Sangye Prayer 00:00:00
Teaching on the Concise Sang Offering of Lamé Tukdrub Barché Künsel 00:00:00
The Concise Sang Offering of Lamé Tukdrub Barché Künsel  FREE 00:00:00
Advanced Tonglen FREE 00:00:00
Dealing With Meditation Obstacles FREE 00:02:00
Countering Distraction: Dealing With Obstacles in Meditation FREE 00:02:00
Amṛta Meditation FREE 00:00:00
Guru Citta Meditation FREE 00:00:00
Path of Meditation Suggested Reading List FREE 00:00:00
How to Progress 00:00:00

About the Instructor

Phakchok Rinpoche

Phakchok Rinpoche was born in 1981 and is a lineage holder of the Profound Treasures of Chokgyur Lingpa from the...

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Program Details

379 Students Enrolled


Duration: Lifetime Access

Price: $108.00

Suggested Reading

Dudjom Rinpoche, The Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, trans. and ed. by Gyurme Dorje and Matthew Kapstein (Boston: Wisdom Publications, 1991), vol. 1, pages 468–474.

Ngawang Zangpo, Guru Rinpoche: His Life and Times, Ithaca: Snow Lion, 2002.

Nyoshul Khenpo, A Marvelous Garland of Rare Gems: Biographies of Masters of Awareness in the Dzogchen Lineage, trans. Richard Barron (Junction City: Padma Publishing, 2005), pages 41–48.

Padmasambhava, Legend of the Great Stupa, Berkeley: Dharma Publishing, 1973

Padmasambhava & Jamgön Kongtrul, The Light of Wisdom, trans. by Erik Pema Kunsang (Boudhanath: Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 1986-1999), pages 43-47 & Appendix 5.

Taranatha, The Life of Padmasambhava, Shang Shung Edizioni, 2005

Tulku Thondup, Masters of Meditation and Miracles, Shambhala, 1996.

Yeshe Tsogyal, Life and Liberation of Padmasambhava, translated by Kenneth Douglas and Gwendolyn Bays (Emeryville: Dharma Publishing, 1978, republished 2008).

Yeshe Tsogyal, Lotus Born: The Life Story of Padmasambhava, Rangjung Yeshe Publications, 2004.

‘The Life of Guru Padmasambhava’ in A Great Treasure of Blessings, The Tertön Sogyal Trust, 2004.