Buddhactivity.org   Community Directory :: Life Stories

Vajra Dakini Nunnery
Khenmo Drolma
PO 382
Bristol   Vermont
USA   05443
802 452 6867

  Khenmo Drolma is the Abbess of Vajra Dakini Nunnery. She is a heart student of Ven Dhyani Ywahoo, studying with her for over 20 years. She has trained with the foremost spiritual teachers of our time including H.H. Dalai Lama, H.H. Chetsang Rinpoche (the head of the Drikung Kagyu Lineage), and Ven Pema Chödrön. In 1995 she made a pilgrimage to India and stayed at Namgyal monastery studying Lam Rim texts at the Tibetan Library of Works and Archives. She returned in 1996 to take Novice ordination with HH Chetsang Rinpoche. She then received many cycles of Drikung teachings and empowerments and made a 5 month retreat in the mountains. Returning to the US she was the Dean of Buddhist studies for Sunray Meditation Society, studying closely with Pema Sangzin Khandrö. From there she traveled to Nova Scotia for monastic training at Gampo Abbey and studied with Ven. Pema Chödrön. She spent the next two years in shedra studying Buddhist classics of philosophy including the Abhidharmakosa, Dudra, Lorig, Tarig, The Bodhisattva’s Way of Life, the Uttara Tantra, Tenet systems and debate. While there she created a statue of Gampopa for the Stupa there and directed monastic training. She returned to Sunray to supervise the building of a Peace stupa. During her next trip to India she received the Drikung lungs and Empowerments at the Snake Year Teachings.
In 2002 Khenmo Drolma was invited to come to India to fulfill the vision of HH Chetsang Rinpoche. He requested that she make a statue of King Songtsen Gonpo based on a dream of the 10 th Panchen Lama. This statue originally was to have been placed in the main square of Lhasa, Tibet. Due to the invasion of Tibet by China all plans were abandoned. She stayed in India to direct the creation of all the art for Songtsen Library. This international library specializes in preserving the cultures of the Himalayas. H.H. Chetsang Rinpoche commissioned many original works for the library, asking that they reflect his special interest in the Dunhuang region on the border of Tibet. There in scrolls unearthed in caves which lie along the ancient silk road, we find the earliest known documentation of life in the Himalayan region. To actualize H.H. Chetsang Rinpoche’s artistic vision, Khenmo Drolma led an international team of 16 artists in creating 40’ ceiling Thangkas, an elaborate entry door and numerous statues using traditional Tibetan techniques and materials dating back to the 1500’s. Khenmo Drolma, aware of the significance of the statue and importance of historical accuracy of the depiction of King Songtsen Gampo, researched details in the great libraries of India to document 7th century fabric, clothing, jewelry and horse harnesses.
HH Chetsang Rinpoche encouraged Khenmo to take full ordination as a bhiksunni in Taiwan at the Ji Yu Chen Monastery, becoming the first fully ordained nun in the Drikung Lineage. Following that she again went into retreat for 3 months. At the request of Ven. Dhyani Ywahoo, Khenmo returned to the US to begin working on establishing Vajra Dakini Nunnery. In 2004 she made a pilgrimage with Ven. Dhyani to Lumbini in Nepal to attend the Monkey Year teachings. There on Chitrul Duchen she was installed as a Khenmo in the Drikung lineage, becoming the first westerner to hold the responsibility of abbot. Since then she has worked continuously to establish Vajra Dakini Nunnery and teach the Dharma internationally.
A former college professor, she has a wide scope of experience ranging from Tibetan arts to Buddhist philosophy as well as stories of adventures within the Tibetan community and from traveling throughout Asia. Khenmo spent many years in the Hospice field serving as an Art Fellow at the Connecticut Hospice and on the board of Hospice of Maine. A cancer survivor herself, she has unique insights in the area of arts and healing. Because she is a modern woman committed to living within ancient wisdom systems, she carries words of inspiration that reflect the integrity of their lineage while being easily understandable to people of all ages, from any walk of life. The lectures are interdisciplinary and suitable for many areas of student interest including art history, philosophy, anthropology, women studies, healthcare and social work.
Khenmo teaches many topics on fundamental Buddhist philosophy and meditation. They include Refuge, Introduction to meditation, Lojong: Seven stages of Mental Development, and classic texts; The Bodhisattva Way of Life Jewel Ornament of Liberation, The Uttara Tantra.

Teachers | Centres | Community | Tools