Waking Up in the Dark Age: May Confusion Dawn as Wisdom

with Acharya Richard John

May 15th

Date details +
  • $40 Program Price
  • $60 Patron Price
  • $20 Other Price
  • Or pay what you can afford (just write in the amount).
Room: Online Program
Program Registration is Closed.

Registration for this online program has ended
(as of 8:00 pm, Friday, May 14 2021). 


The Four Dharmas of Gampopa

Grant your blessings so that my mind may become one with the dharma
Grant your blessings so that dharma may progress along the path
Grant your blessings so that the path may clarify confusion
Grant your blessings so that confusion may dawn as wisdom



We are truly experiencing the onset of the dark age, which the Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche described as a time of “pollution and interruption,” when “the blessings of spiritual energy are being lost.” For committed practitioners, these times call for dharma teachings of urgent simplicity.

One of the most elegant pith instructions describing the dynamic process of the buddhist path is well known as the Four Dharmas of Gampopa. A mainstay of the “practice lineages,” they are attributed to Gampopa, the main disciple of Milarepa and guru to the first Karmapa.

Each of the Four Dharmas contains practice advice that is accessible and free of intellectual speculation, and immediately relevant for all of us in this day and age.


You might find that the elementary level [of teaching] is very profound and brilliant. This is the same way that I, myself, was raised as a true Mukpo.
—Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche


The Four Dharmas

This is the fourth of a 4-part series that has been exploring the Four Dharmas of Gampopa. Each program has been sponsored at a different center. Every session includes meditation, a talk, and ample time for questions and conversation. The two previous talks were: 

May Dharma Progress Along the Path 
January 16th with Davis Shambhala

May the Path Clarify Confusion
March 13th with Berkeley Shambhala


About Acharya Richard John

A long-time friend of the Northern California Shambhala Centers, Acharya John took refuge with Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in Berkeley in 1976. He was appointed acharya by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, and for many years has taught Shambhala Buddhist programs in the US, Canada, and internationally. He completed the first three-year group retreat at Gampo Abbey, and now teaches full time. Acharya John and his wife Liz reside in Halifax, Canada.

Heart Gifts for Acharya Richard John

This completely voluntary gift can be made according to your inspiration. It is an expression of gratitude for receiving the teachings. There is no suggested amount—any amount is appreciated.


Program Price: $40
Patron Price: $60*
Seniors, students, and limited income: $20 (please use other price)
Or pay what you can afford, nobody will be turned away for lack of funds. Write in the amount.

*Paying the patron price helps others who cannot pay full price.


Please register and pay at least 24-hours in advance in order to receive the Zoom link. Note that all registrations must be manually processed and there will be a lag time before receiving the zoom link. 

Please note that registration for this online program will close at 8:00 pm, Fri, May 14 2021.


If you have any questions, please contact Program Coordinator, Marcia Clayburg at [email protected].


Zoom About Zoom

This program is through the Zoom platform. It is available for computers, smart phones, and tablets. You will need to download the free app on your device before joining the session. Once it is loaded, all you need to do is click the link and follow the prompts to join the session.

It’s best to join 5-10 minutes in advance so that you are set up when the session begins.

Learn more about Zoom: https://zoom.us

You can find is a list of Zoom FAQs at this link.