Welcome to Olmo Ling

Olmo Ling is a religious educational non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the ancient teachings of the Bon tradition of Tibet and making them available and accessible to lay practitioners.

Olmo Ling offers weekly meditation practice and teachings, prayers, meditation instruction and private interviews, and a study program that includes regular retreats with Tempa Dukte Lama and visiting lamas of the Bon tradition.

More about Olmo Ling… or visit the 2019 teaching and retreat schedule.

Tuesday evening talk and meditation with Jim DelBianco, September 17: Chanting and Contemplation

Tempa Lama is currently in Nepal, where he and Roshi Joan Halifax will lead a month-long medical service trip to Humla, Tempa Lama’s home region. During Tempa Lama’s travels we will continue our weekly offering of a meditation and Buddhist talk on Tuesday evenings (7-8:15pm) and meditation and chanting on Saturday mornings (9-10am). Tempa Lama has invited senior students to offer the weekly talks during his travels. We are also honored to be hosting Zen priest Catherine Gammon for an evening talk on October 15.

This coming Tuesday, Olmo Ling chant leader Jim DelBianco will guide us in chanting the three Heart Mantras of Bon, the Tse Drup Longevity Mantra, and the Healing Mantra of Sidpa Gyalmo. Following each chant, we will spend time in contemplation.

  • September 17, Jim DelBianco: Chanting and Contemplation
  • September 24, Stan Perelman: The Nine Breaths of Purification and Tsa Lung
  • October 1, Jason T Campbell: Bon Thrul Khor practice
  • October 8, Andrew Kaiser: Bon Chod Practice
  • October 15, Zen priest Catherine Gammon: Dogen’s Genjokoan: Finding Our Place Where We Are
  • October 22, Gary Terner: Silent Meditation & Chanting
  • October 29, Bob Marin: The Space of Awareness
  • November 5, Iris Grossmann and Jim DelBianco: Loving Mother practice
Details: Evening meditation and talk on Tuesdays, 7-8:15pm at Olmo Ling, 1101 Greenfield Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15217.
Our weekly schedule is open to all and is offered free of charge (donations welcome). No need to register, just show up and join us!


Writing as a Wisdom Project – Workshop with Soto Zen Priest Catherine Gammon

Saturday October 19, 9am-5pm at Olmo Ling, 1101 Greenfield Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15217

Combining meditation in the Zen tradition with the practice of imaginative writing, this workshop invites intimate and creative study of the mind. Engaging playfully with language, we write together from prompts and read aloud, listen, and respond to one another’s words. Our writings and responses are explorations, and our conversations are based in imaginative insight rather than craft or critique. The day is appropriate for participants at any level of literary or meditation experience. Meditation guidance will be offered.

Catherine Gammon is a fiction writer and Soto Zen priest. Her novel Sorrow (Braddock Avenue Books, 2013) was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. Her novel Isabel Out of the Rain was published by Mercury House in 1991, and her shorter fiction has appeared in literary journals for many years. Before beginning residential Zen training at San Francisco Zen Center’s Tassajara and Green Gulch Farm, Catherine served for ten years on the faculty of the MFA program of the University of Pittsburgh. She leads the Neighborhood Zen practice group in Greenfield.

Read more and register…

Bon A Khrid Dzogchen Transmission and Practice Part I with Tempa Dukte Lama

Fri. Nov. 15, 10am through Sun. Nov. 17, 2pm, Sequanota Center, Boswell, PA

We are excited that Tempa Dukte Lama will begin a new cycle of the A Khrid Dzogchen teachings this fall. Join us to receive the first part of the transmission and instruction of the Heart Essence of the A Khrid Dzogchen teachings from Tempa Lama.

The Bon Dzogchen teachings are the highest teachings of Bon as they offer a means to directly recognize the true nature of the mind and attain stabilization of this recognition. Tempa Lama received these teachings directly from the late His Holiness 33rd Menri Trizin in an extended one-on-one teaching. This retreat is a special opportunity to directly recognize the mind’s innate purity. The retreat will combine teachings and dialogue with time spent in contemplation to deepen our experience.

The Bon A Khrid teachings consist of three retreats. Attendance of this Part I retreat is required to attend the Part II and III teachings in 2020. This year Tempa Lama will focus on teaching the Nyoshi through his vivid fresh understanding and experience. Nyoshi is the actual practice of the A Khrid Dzogchen including the pointing out of the nature of the mind.

Space for this residential 3-day retreat is limited. Read more and register…

New: Monday evening Thrul Khor Tibetan Yoga practice with Jason T Campbell – starting September 30

Mondays 7-8pm at Olmo Ling, 1101 Greenfield Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15217

The Thrul Khor Tibetan yoga practice with Jason T Campbell will start at 7pm with the prayer of the Thrul Khor lineage masters and a brief meditation. Jason will then guide the group through the preliminary practices of Tsa Lung for about 30 minutes. The session will conclude with a short rest period and chanting the Three Heart Mantras of Bon.

Through the practice of Thrul Khor we clear our mind and retain its clarity and insight. Tibetan Yoga practice can clear conditioning that cause disturbances and imbalances in the threefold humors of wind, bile and phlegm and thus helps us maintain a healthy body. No prior knowledge of Thrul Khor is required. The Tsa Lung practices are gentle and suited to practitioners at all levels.

This practice will be offered weekly from Monday September 30.

New book release: Thrul Khor – Ancient Tibetan Bon Yoga

By Tempa Dukte Lama

Olmo Ling Publications, August 2019
Paperback, 272 pp., $23.95

Now available at the Olmo Ling bookstore

Thrul Khor is an ancient Tibetan practice that employs breathing, physical movement, visualization, and deep meditative awareness as a path of harmonizing the body, mind, and energy, and ultimately attaining awakening. In this first comprehensive English-language guide to Bon Thrul Khor, Tempa Dukte Lama offers step-by-step instructions for 85 practices according to the A Khrid, Ma Gyud (Mother Tantra), and Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyud cycles of Bon Thrul Khor, supported by 499 photographs. He also explains the benefits of the Thrul Khor practices for our spiritual path and for our physical health and wellbeing.

Thrul Khor works with our mind, body, and energy to support us in stabilizing our understanding. The pure energy of awareness appears in the five colors, the energetic expression of the Five Wisdoms: Wisdom of Emptiness, Mirror-like Wisdom, Wisdom of Equanimity, Wisdom of Discernment, and All-accomplishing Wisdom. The innate essence of the five elements manifests from these five colors. Within the body, the five elements are expressed as flesh, blood, metabolic heat, breath, and mind. When we purify these five aspects through Thrul Khor, we will experience the true essence of the elements, which is the innate luminosity or innate awareness. Ultimately, the rainbow body can be attained.

The book includes the Tsa Lung prayers in English and Tibetan as well as guidelines for an intensive 100-day Thrul Khor retreat.

Order your copy now!

Olmo Ling monthly Youth Sangha – restarting Friday September 27

The Olmo Ling Youth Sangha is offered monthly on Fridays from 6:30-8PM.
Please note that this is a half hour later start time than previous years.

Venue: Olmo Ling Bon Center, 1101 Greenfield Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15217. This program is offered free of charge. We appreciate donations to help us cover material expenses.


The Friday evening Youth Sangha is a mindful way to end the school week and begin the weekend. This Program is free and open to all ages birth to teens, and newcomers are always warmly welcome. Children over age 5 may be dropped off, although parents generally stay to share this time with their children and fellowship with other families. For children 5 and under, we request that a guardian remain and participate. Gatherings include a snack, meditation, mantras, and an art activity such as calligraphy, music & literature or discussions and service projects.

Although we are based in the Tibetan Bon tradition, we have been expanding activities to include more traditions and Youth Sangha is appropriate for all Buddhists as well as other wisdom traditions. Dharma is for everyone, so please share this invitation with others, especially if you belong to another Sangha! While there is no charge for any of the activities, contributing to the shared snack (all nut & peanut free) is always appreciated and there is a bowl for donations to Olmo Ling right inside the door, but please never let any of those requests be a hindrance to joining us!

Please make sure to RSVP with the Youth Sangha coordinator Bonnie Weiss at earthmom3@comcast.net to ensure adequate materials are available for class as well as to advise about any food allergies or special accommodations that might benefit your child

Upcoming dates

9/27/19: We will start the season of Youth Sangha off with an introduction to mindfulness and basic sitting meditation in addition to reciting our wisdom deity mantra. Our contemplative art activity will be making malas, beaded bracelets traditionally used to count mantras, but also a great tool for children to use to count breaths when learning to self-regulate.

10/25/19: In the ancient Bon tradition there are many traditional dances that are performed in beautiful costumes and symbolic masks. We will watch videos of some authentic dances performed at Menri monastery then make our own paper masks of Chitipati skeletons, ancient Tibetan characters with an interesting story. Similar to the imagery of the upcoming dia de los Muertos, they teach us that death is not final or fearsome.

11/22/19: For this special session of Youth Sangha, we will have a guest teacher, J.T. Campbell, a senior student of Tempa Lama who assisted greatly with the recently published book Thrul Khor-Ancient Tibetan Bon Yoga. Thrul Khor is an ancient Tibetan practice that employs breathing, physical movement, visualization, and deep meditative awareness as a path of harmonizing the body, mind, and energy, and ultimately attaining awakening. No previous experience is necessary to try this unique form of yoga.

12/20/19: This special Youth Sangha will be a sort of Winter Solstice holiday party with Jamie Christian of Lettuce Turnip the Beet Community and School Garden Assoc. (and long-time YS parent) guiding us in preparing traditional Tibetan momos, or dumplings, to share after we cook them along with any other treats the community wants to bring as a pot luck.

1/18/20: One of the most renowned practices in Tibetan Buddhism and Bon is the making of sand mandalas which represent the impermanence of all things. Although we obviously don’t have time to construct an authentic one in an hour, we will collaborate to construct a nature mandala of seasonal greenery, pebbles, twigs, and seashells in addition to colored sand. after completing this family friendly community activity, we will brush it away to foster non-attachment.

Monthly Day of Practice: Sunday September 29, 2019

The day of meditation is offered each month and is open to all levels of practitioners as well as non-practitioners. The time will be spent in silent meditation. The day is divided into 45 minute sessions with a 15 minute break. You are invited to stay for as long as you desire. You can sit on a cushion, in a chair, stand or any other position that works best for you. The Day of Practice begins at 9am and ends at 4pm

Coffee, tea and water will be available. No advance registration is necessary. There is no charge, but, donations to Olmo Long are always appreciated.

The Day of Meditation is guided by Olmo Ling chant leader Jim DelBianco. If you have any questions email Jim at sangha@olmoling.org. Please check the website for cancellations.


Visit of His Holiness 34th Menri Trizin Lungtok Dawa Dhargye to Olmo Ling

We are deeply honored to have hosted His Holiness the 34th Menri Trizin as part of his first world tour. Following the passing of the late 33rd Menri Trizin last fall, Geshe Dawa Dhargyal was determined as the new spiritual head of Bon and Abbot of Menri on January 1, 2018 through an intensive weeklong prayer ritual conducted by Bon nuns and monks from across Asia.

His Holiness offered a public talk Awakening the Heart of Compassion, at the First Unitarian Church, a daylong teaching on the Loving Mother Sherab Jamma at Olmo Ling, and the Mawe Senge wisdom deity empowerment at Olmo Ling. He joined a benefit dinner for the nuns and children at Menri Monastery. His Holiness also visited the Mayor’s office and the Art in the Garden children’s program offered by OMA Pittsburgh.

Read more about His Holiness’ visit in the post-event newsletter and in an article in the Post Gazette.


Heart Drop of the Loving Mother

By Tempa Dukte Lama

Olmo Ling Publications, June 2014
Paperback 176pp, $16.95

In Heart Drop of the Loving Mother, Tempa Dukte Lama opens the door to the practice of embodying the Great Loving Mother, known in Tibetan Bön as Sherab Jamma, the female Buddha of love and wisdom. The Loving Mother is the mother of all. She is the source of our wisdom and wholesome aspiration. She is the ceaseless source of compassion, skillful means, and power. Through these qualities, the Loving Mother nurtures all beings without hindrance. She is clarity without obstacles. She is the awakened nature of all beings. She is love because she wants all beings to be happy. She is compassion because she wants all beings to be free from suffering. She is presence because she is always there, offering us strength, protection, and clarity.

The Heart Drop of the Loving Mother Practice helps us connect with our primordial capacity to love and care unconditionally for one another and for ourselves. If we take some time for this practice every day, it will deeply transform us.

Order your copy of Heart Drop of the Loving Mother from our store here.


Journey into Buddhahood

The Five Paths and Ten Stages of Compassionate Beings

By Tempa Dukte Lama
Foreword by H.E. Menri Lopon.

Olmo Ling Publications, September 2013
Paperback 249pp, $18.95

The Journey into Buddhahood is the practice of realizing the true nature of reality. We enter this journey when we first have the thought of helping all beings without distinction.

This is the first time that the Bon teachings on the Paths and Stages of compassionate beings are written in English or any other Western language. This book is like the rain coming at the right time and place. It will be of great benefit to all aspiring beings.
- His Eminence Menri Lopon Rinpoche.

Read more here and order your copy of Journey into Buddhahood from our store here.

Other Publications from Olmo Ling

Tempa Lama’s other two books, Inexhaustible Miracles: The Ten Perfections on the Path of Compassionate Beings and The Intimate Mind: Illuminating Emotion and Transformation are available from our online store and from Amazon.