Upcoming Retreats

  • Commuting – $609.00
  • RV/Camper Van – $847.00
  • Women's Dorm – $931.00
  • Men's Dorm – $931.00
  • Women's Quad – $1,288.00
  • Men's Quad – $1,288.00
  • Private Room- Twin Bed – $1,645.00
  • Private Room- Double bed – $1,645.00
  • Private Cabin #1 - "Vajrapani" – $1,820.00
  • Private Cabin #2 - "Chenrezig" – $1,820.00
  • Private Cabin #3 - "Vajrayogini" – $1,820.00
  • Private Cabin #4 - "Chakrasamvara" – $1,820.00
  • Private Cabin #5 - "Tara" – $1,820.00
  • Private Cabin #6 - "Yamantaka" – $1,820.00
  • Private Cabin - Most Secret Cabin – $1,820.00

Water Bowl Offering Retreat: The Power of Purification

Venerable Angie Muir

October 5 - 12, 2024

When we offer water, our mind, like the quality of water becomes gentle and soft and we generate loving kindness and compassion towards all living beings, bodhichitta.” – Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche


For any type of spiritual growth or realizations to develop in our hearts we need to create the internal conditions through the practices of purification and accumulation of merit. Whether you have a commitment to do the preliminary practice of water bowls from your teacher or have a wish to purify, offering water bowls is an excellent opportunity to experience the power of purification as well as being a method to accumulate great merit and counteract the mind of miserliness.


Lama Zopa Rinpoche has given special permission for this practice to be completed by groups of people who, in performing the practice, can each accumulate the full count of offerings made during the retreat. That means whatever total count of water bowls we reach as a group during the retreat can be added to your commitment.


For those counting this as part of their preliminary practice, there is no need to maintain the practice in between. As well as making extensive water bowl offerings together, there will be an opportunity to learn about or deepen these other essential practices listed below. By including these, you will experience the full scope of all the elements necessary in any given retreat you undertake in the future to make it most meaningful.

  1. Morning Prostrations to the 35 Buddhas
  2. Lama Tsong Khapa Guru Yoga practice to receive blessings
  3. Lam Rim Prayers and Meditation on the Gradual Path to Enlightenment
  4. Final Day: A session of Dorje Khadro: Fire Purification Ritual
  5. One evening of introduction to Sur Practice: A practice highly praised by Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche (and fun!) We hope you can join us for this opportunity. The more


Additional Benefits of Making Water Bowls Offerings
from Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand by Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche

Offer water that has eight qualities, each one representing a quality that you will develop in the future as a result of offering the water with a good motivation now:

  1. Your ethics will be pure because the water you offer is cool.
  2. Because the water is delicious, you will come to enjoy delicious food.
  3. The lightness of the water indicates that your mind and body will become fit.
  4. The water’s softness results in a gentle mindstream.
  5. A clear mind results from the water’s clearness.
  6. Its being free from a bad smell will purify your karmic obscurations.
  7. Because the water does not hurt the stomach, your body will be free of illness.
  8. Its being easy on the throat indicates you will come to have pleasant speech.



Additional Retreat Information


About Varjapani Institute

Vajrapani Institute for Wisdom Culture was the first Tibetan Buddhist Retreat Center in America.  Vajrapani aims to provide a friendly and conducive environment for people of all nationalities to learn and put into practice the teachings of the Buddha, and connect with other Dharma practitioners.  Located on 70 acres of secluded land within the redwood forests of the Santa Cruz mountains, Vajrapani Institute has been an immersive space for people of all backgrounds to find and deepen their spiritual practices, with the main goal of bridging the gap between the head and heart of practice.


About Retreat Fees (includes accommodation, 3 meals a day, and facility costs)

The collected registration fees include all accommodations, 3 nutritious vegetarian meals a day, and general facility/operating costs.  Retreat registrations help support the center to keep everything operating, allowing us to invite so many precious teachers, and to hold this precious space of 70+ acres of secluded redwood forest to allow guests to have the quiet, contemplative space to continue spiritual growth.

Teacher’s Offerings

Traditionally, spiritual teachings are considered priceless; remuneration of our teacher(s) is not included in the fee information detailed on this page. Instead, we invite you to consider bringing a cash donation with you to express your gratitude for the teachings. Participants get a chance to present a cash offering to the teachers on the last day of the retreat and this is supplemented by a donation from Vajrapani Institute. Please note that we don’t offer a credit card option for teacher’s fees.

Financial Aid/ Scholarships

We want to make retreat available to everyone. With this in mind, we will gladly work out a payment plan with you if needed. If more assistance is necessary, we offer several scholarships. Please note that the scholarship deadline is one month before retreat begins.


Venerable Angie Muir
Ven. Angie Muir, a Tibetan Buddhist Nun from Scotland, has been ordained for 18 years.  During this time she has studied and practiced in the East – India and Nepal – and the West, Scotland and the USA.  She has also been centrally involved in serving, teaching and leading meditations at these places. She currently resides in California, serving at Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s private residence.
Learn more about Venerable Angie Muir