Our lineage

The Auckland Shambhala Centre is part of Shambhala, an international community of meditation centres and groups that was founded by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and has until recently been led by his son and lineage holder Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.

Our lineage combines the Kagyü and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan Buddhism with the Shambhala tradition of living an uplifted life, fully engaged with the world.



Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche (1939-1987) was one of the most dynamic teachers of Buddhism in the 20th century. He was a pioneer in bringing the Buddhist teachings of Tibet to the West and is credited with introducing many Buddhist concepts into the English language and psyche in a fresh and new way.

The former supreme abbot of Surmang Monasteries in Tibet, Rinpoche is known as one of the foremost meditation masters and teachers of Tibetan Buddhism in the West. In the early 1970s, he founded Naropa University, the first Buddhist-inspired university in North America, along with over 100 meditation centres worldwide. He also authored two dozen books on meditation, poetry, art and the Shambhala path of warriorship.

For more about Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, go to Shambhala’s Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche webpage.


The acharyas (senior teachers) of Shambhala are deeply experienced teachers, empowered to offer Buddhist refuge and bodhisattva vows, and to bring the continuity of our spiritual lineage into the living teaching environment of local Shambhala Centres.

The Auckland Shambhala Centre hosts acharyas regularly, and particularly to direct retreats.

For more about the acharyas, go to Shambhala’s Acharyas webpage.


Our Auckland resident teacher and Shastri is Helen Bennett. Resident teacher for Wellington is Shastri Marion Bond.