Lama Mark's Retreats & Classes

We are very fortunate to host Lama Mark Webber as Resident Teacher and Retreat Master, for the Retreats and Classes as listed here. For information about Lama Mark’s teaching in other parts of Canada and around the world please visit his website at :


21st Annual Summer Retreat at Crystal Mountain Society with Lama Mark Webber 

Dates: July 31st to August 29th, 2021 

Location: Crystal Mountain Society Retreat and Namgyal Choling Gompa, Galiano Island, B.C. Canada 

Contact: For more information and registration, contact Barbara Shields 



Crystal Mountain Society is very pleased to announce that for the 21st year Lama Mark Webber will be teaching, leading meditation and guiding practitioners at the Crystal Mountain Summer Retreat. 

Schedule and Topics: 

Week 1: 

a) Introducing the awakening mind and Buddhist Meditation 

b) Sensory In-touchment and Enlivening 

• Four Noble Truths, Emptiness and Compassion: Study, Reflection and Meditation. 

• Progressively deepening awareness of our bodies is a vital part of liberation. Gradu-ally bringing in-touchment and enlivening to our body experience is a major compo-nent of this summer’s retreat. 

• Many sessions each day of yoga, Feldenkrais and explorations by Lama Mark. (Led by Laurel Jacobson, Lama Mark and others) 

Week 2: 

The meditation of Amitayus from the Drikung Dzogchen tradition. 

• Group and individual practice. 

• Integrating sound, speech, mantra and breath into all our practices (led by Michael Gohl). 

• Learning vajra recitation. 

• Many sessions each day of yoga, Feldenkrais and explorations by Lama Mark. (Led by Laurel Jacobson, Lama Mark and others) 

• The empowerment of Amitayus. Date to be announced. 

Week 3: 

Instructions and teachings on appearances and the Illusory Body, through the progres-sive stages of emptiness 

• The meditation of Amitayus continued with emphasis on inner yoga. Group and individual practice. 

• Integrating sound, speech, mantra and breath into all our practices continued (led by Michael Gohl). 

• Vajra recitation continued. 

• Many sessions each day of yoga, Feldenkrais and explorations by Lama Mark. (led by Laurel Jacobson, Lama Mark and others) 

Week 4: 

Instructions and teachings on Illusory Body, through the progressive stages of empti-ness: interdependence and totality. 

• The meditation of Amitayus continued. Group and individual practice. 

• Continuing sessions each day of sound, yoga, Feldenkrais and explorations sensory awareness. (led by Laurel Jacobson and others) Other Empowerments, transmissions and practices to be announced. 


The retreat will end with an empowerment and community feast (Tsog). 

Crystal Mountain will be following current COVID 19 protocols as directed by the Health Department .

 Ongoing Online Classes with Lho Ontül Rinpoche and Lama Mark Webber

We are pleased to announce that during the CoVid-19 pandemic Lho Ontül Rinpoche and Lama Mark Webber are continuing their teachings online.  For more information and up to date class times please go to the following webpages.

Lho Ontül Rinpoche:


Please join us in a wonderful meditation and prayer: collectively reciting 100 million Guru Rinpoche Mantras.

In the May 16th class and meditation with Drikung Ontul Rinpoche, Lho Ratna Rinpoche invited us all to join them and the community of Tso Pema*, India in reciting Vajra Guru mantras:  


Let’s all celebrate Saga Dawa**, the 4th lunar month, May 23 up until June 22, 2020 with at least 100 million blessings of liberation, health, peace and prosperity.

Please send in your weekly tallies to:

Totals will be posted every week on:

May we fill the ten directions and all sentient beings with great compassion and wisdom!

Lama Chokyi Gyaltsen (Mark Webber) on behalf of Lho Ontul Rinpoche and Lho Karma Rinpoche

Lho Ontul Rinpoche says:

“An important announcement to all the Dharma friends whose faith and samaya are in union. As you all know the Covid-19 pandemic has spread to every part of every continent, causing harm and suffering for many. In view of these unfortunate times, respective governments and medical experts have issued guidelines and have explained the essential measures and practices to best respond to this fearful pandemic. The precautionary measures of what needs to be accepted and rejected. With that established, I don’t need to say how important it is to be diligent. As said in a Tibetan proverb: When the path is joyous it’s “ala thala”, when the path is dangerous it’s “Guru Pema Jungney”. If one makes single pointed supplication to the sole sufficient King, embodiment of all object of refuge, the Buddha of three times Guru Padmasambhava, the temporal benefits are, in his own words, “depletion of obstacles to a long life will definitely be removed”. Pacifying swiftly illnesses, famine, armed conflict and elemental harms, and at the time of death, the terrors and fears of death will pacify in their self-nature. There is no doubt of the instant transference to pure realm of personal experience. A Tibetan proverb goes: “Supplicate to one deity and be persistent in one path”. At the extraordinary place of Tso Pema, and during the extraordinary month of Saga Dawa, with the spontaneous gathering of all the interdependent originations, we will be engaging in the accumulation of 100 million Vajra Guru Mantras. This is an appeal for all to exert themselves to accumulate the vast root of virtue in this practice.”

* Tso Pema, Lotus Lake, in the town of Rewalsar is a holy place full of Guru Rinpoche blessings and centuries of Dharma practice. In the 8th century the great Guru came to the Land of Zahor, found princess Mandarava meditating in a cave and both got arrested by the King. Though the King tried to burn Padmasambhava alive, he was found sitting on a lotus, cool and refreshed. He transformed the burning pyre into a lake; an extraordinary miracle. Overcome with deep remorse, the King gave Guru Rinpoche his garments, his five royal robes, the kingdom, his people and the Princess. Today we can visit the caves and meditate where the Guru and Princess Mandarava practiced together. We can be interconnected with the many sincere, accomplished practitioners and teachers in monasteries, caves, apartments and doing Kora around the lake, all striving for awakening and benefiting countless living beings. It is here that Drikung Ontul Rinpoche made a three-year retreat and later in 1971 founded the Drikung Kagyu Monastery:

** Saga Dawa is the 4th month of the Tibetan lunar year and  commemorates the birth, enlightenment, and parinirvana of Shakyamuni Buddha.

20th Annual Summer Retreat 
at Crystal Mountain Society

Lama Mark Webber

Dates:  August 1 to  August 30, 2020

Location: Crystal Mountain Society Retreat 
and Namgyal Choling Gompa, 
Galiano Island, B.C. Canada

Contact: For more information and registration, contact 
Barbara Shields


Crystal Mountain Society is very pleased to announce that for the 20th year Lama Mark Webber will be teaching, leading meditation and guiding practitioners at the Crystal Mountain Summer Retreat.

Schedule and Topics:

Week 1: 

An Introduction to the practice of Buddha Dharma and meditation: 

  • Four Noble Truths
  • Hollow Body Practice into Lovingkindness and Compassion 
  • Generating Bodhicitta: wisdom awareness and compassion for all beings
  • The Seven Limbed Prayer
  • An Empowerment at the end of the 1st week. To be announced. 

Week 2 & 3: 

The Bodhicittavivarana—Exposition of the Awakening Mind. Attributed to Nagarjuna. A most extraordinary text on the progressive stages of unfolding Bodhicitta, the awakening mind. The Lama will give, explanations, classic and modern meditations, all step by step based on this text.

Parnashavari (Logyönma) - The Leaf Clad One. From the Drikung Kagyu, a practice for removing sickness, epidemics and all kinds of obstacles.

 Week 4:

Vajra Yogini Initiation and Practice. Full mandala Empowerment. The main focus will be on bodhicitta, inner yoga, mantra, breath connected with this extraordinary meditation.

Other Empowerments, transmissions and practices to be announced.

The retreat will end with a purification smoke offering (indoors), empowerment and community feast (Tsog).



An Abhidhamma Transmission, Study & Retreat

September 21 – February 3

with Lama Mark Webber

Crystal Mountain Retreat Centre, & Namgyal Choling Gompa, BC, Canada

September 21, 2019 – February 8, 2020

— transmission and step by step teachings & meditation for 3 months, plus 1 month intensive Vipassana retreat —

In response to requests for another deep study of Abhidhamma with Lama Mark, there will be a four month retreat on Galiano Island.

The Abhidhamma (Pali for “Higher Laws” or “Higher Phenomena”, Sanskrit: Abhidharma) is one of the three-baskets (collections) of the Buddha’s teachings. The emphasis of this retreat will be on combining study with an approach and practice of Vipassana via the tradition of Abhidhamma as Lama Mark received it from the Venerable Namgyal Rinpoche. In this mode of transmission there is less emphasis on the Abhidhamma as Buddhist philosophy, and more on the entire scope of the Buddha’s teachings and how we can practice it to an extraordinary depth. It is a profound study and series of meditative investigations into: mind and form; mental states; meditative concentration; realms of being; mental processes and cognition; stages of liberation; emptiness; interdependent origination; and the causality/emptiness teaching of the interdependence of all phenomena (Patthana). Highly recommended for practitioners who are or may someday teach and guide people in Dharma and meditation.

The Course/Retreat Plan:

Two day orientation, 5 day setting up and settling in;
Three-months of continuous Abhidhamma teachings (as per the tradition of full transmission), with study and short meditation periods. Manjusri empowerments;
One month Vipassana/Abhidhamma retreat;
One week coming out of retreat.
Lama Mark will give the entire transmission of the text, the Abhidhammathasangaha, with occasional teachings from the Abhidhammakosa interspersed with modern cognitive, neuroscience, life sciences, ecology, physics, chemistry and space science perspectives. Be prepared to study, meditate, investigate together and do lab explorations! There are often two x 2 – 2.5 hour classes from Lama Mark and a practitioner’s study and review session most days, except during the meditation periods. There will be the opportunity for interviews and guidance.

Empowerments and other teachings to be announced.

We are currently working on a budget. Details on costs and accommodation will be shared regularly with those who are registered/interested. A non-refundable deposit schedule will be announced. Enquire about scholarships.

If you seriously wish to attend this retreat or have any questions please contact Susan van Asselt, the retreat coordinators.

Note: Only participants who attended the last four month Abhidhamma retreat will be considered for attending part of the program.

Lama Mark Webber

Lama Mark Webber will be in residence and retreat on Galiano Island at Namgyal Choling Gompa from December 6, 2016 to January 10, 2017. Due to the background of most of the participants he will be giving teachings and leading group meditations in the tradition of the Drikung Yangzab Dzogchen. 

There is no specified retreat length, please participate for one month or less.

In addition, he has offered to individually guide people in all types of Buddhist meditation, depending on their interests and backgrounds. 

Accommodation: Lodging to be located and food obtained on an individual basis. 

For registration please contact
Susan van Asselt

For coordinating class times, group sessions, empowerments and individual interviews please contact
Cole Ramsey: & 778-883-2025



For information about Lama Mark, please see:

The 16th Annual Crystal Mountain Summer Retreat: Karma, Causality and Finding our Lucid Awareness

Taught by Lama Mark Webber.

July 2nd to 30th, 2016, Galiano Island, BC, Canada


* Week 1: Introduction. Transforming our habit patterns, one step at a time. Understanding and meditating on karma—a key that unlocks the door to Liberation.

* Week 2 to 4 (3 weeks): Further meditations, contemplations and teachings on the nature of karma (causation). A three-week Samatha-Vipassana retreat. 

* Week 4: optional, The Common and Preliminary Meditations of the Drikung Yangzab Dzogchen Lineage


Crystal Mountain is very pleased to announce that for the 16th year Lama Mark Webber will be teaching the Crystal Mountain Summer Retreat. One of the cornerstones of Buddhist meditation is karma, the process of causality. Lama Mark will use a number classic texts, such as the Abhidharma, the Four Foundations of Mindfulness and the Jewel Ornament of Liberation, and modern science, to explain this important Buddhist teaching. Lama Mark often recalls the Ven. Namgyal Rinpoche saying, “the main thing hindering beings progress in meditation is not more meditation, but their karma. Free up karma and meditation is unhindered.”  The Buddha taught that understanding causality is essential to the meditation that leads one on the great path of lucid awareness, joy and compassion.

The Vipassana tradition of the great Burmese teacher Mahasi Sayadaw will serve as the main meditation. There will be practice time in groups and individual sessions and opportunities for meditation interviews. Classes on the stages of Insight and Dharma will provide guidance for practitioners to gain lasting insight and compassion. Regular movement classes by Laurel Jacobson will assist in flexibility and energy to be clear and balanced.

The one week teaching on the Preliminary Meditations of the Drikung Yangzab Dzogchen Lineage will be taught alongside the main retreat during the last week of the retreat. It will also be excellent preparation for the three-month Dzogchen retreat starting in September 2016.

For more info, please contact


or Ted: 

Mini-retreats and meditations with Lama Mark Webber

An introductory weekend on the Buddhist path of Liberation, called ‘Dharma’. This is a path of step by step instructions for the body and mind which is understandable, logical, direct and practical. The Dharma has been practiced successfully by hundreds of thousands of people in all walks of life and education for over 2,500 years.


Lama Mark Webber will begin by explaining the meaning of Dharma. Then we will be shown how to change our lives by unbinding and re-shaping our habit patterns; our motivations and intentions being the major shapers. Finally to understand why and where we are headed. With meditation and wholesome conduct in our lives, we can find the clear, unobstructed mind. This luminous clarity of mind is always present, it has just been hidden for a while. Lama Mark will suggest meditation practices, guide us through short meditation sessions, provide lots of instructions and give supportive handouts during these talks.


In addition, Lama Mark will bestow empowerments during some of these weekends as requested.


June 3 - 5, 2016: Bowen Island Yoga, Bowen Island, B.C.

Contact Helen: or

June 10 - 12, 2016: Camp Rory, Rossland, B.C.

Contact Susan:

June 24 - 26, 2016: Rotary Field House, Nanaimo, B.C.

Contact Laura: or visit


Please note new date of the Galiano teachings

Aug 5-7, 2016: Crystal Mountain Society land, Galiano Island, B.C. 

Contact Sue:


As a meditator living in the heart of Vancouver, I can’t express how fortunate I feel to join others in this beautiful environment to regain my sense of equilibrium and refresh my commitment to a compassionate life.  Renata Healy

Crystal Mountain Bell and Dorje

Crystal Mountain Society for Eastern and Western Studies