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. The Center 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. A Refuge for Practitioners Our weekly program offers a space of refuge; a space where people can support each other in their practice and where we can reconnect with our innate pure nature and good heart. Bon Studies Olmo Ling’s study program offers the Bon teachings through retreats and workshops on a variety of topics for practitioners of all ages. In order to preserve the Bon traditions for current and future practitioners, the Center publishes new and commentary texts and translations of essential Bon practices. Bon Social Action The Bon spiritual teachings of compassion and liberation from suffering become alive when we express them through our actions. Olmo Ling offers special training practices in the area of healing and programs in compassionate care and spiritual support for the dying. We are currently working to establish a Project on Being with Dying, a Children and Teen Project, and a Prison Project. The Project on Being with Dying offers training programs in compassionate care for working with the dying along with spiritual help and support for the dying. The Olmo Ling Prison Project offers prisoners guided meditation instruction in ways to transform their difficulties. These training programs enable people who wish to actively help others to become a resource for them through social action inspired by the Bon teachings
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Directed by Olmo Ling chant leader Eileen Nadzam, Music for Menri provides Western instruments and music lessons to nuns in the Renla Menling Nunnery at Menri Monastery, India, as well as Western music education for students in the Menri Monastery school. Eileen is also building an extensive collection of transcriptions of Bon chants and other sacred music into Western notation to support their preservation for future generations.
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Eileen Nadzam has loved music since she can remember. She received a M.F.A. in Music from Carnegie Mellon University, is a member of the Pittsburgh Musicians’ Union, and currently owns a music studio that serves a number of students. Eileen became interested in Tibetan Bon in 2008 when she met Tempa Lama, who had recently moved to Pittsburgh to start the Olmo Ling temple. When Eileen attended her first meditation and Bon talk with Tempa Lama, she felt as if she had “finally come home.” As Eileen says, “Everything seemed somehow familiar to me.” The music of the chants, and especially the vibrations within the chants, transported her to a beautiful place within herself.
Eileen decided to transcribe the Bon chant melodies into western musical notation so they could be preserved for posterity in their original form. Her first chant transcriptions were published in a book of chants that was presented to His Holiness when he visited Pittsburgh in June 2011. His Holiness then invited Eileen to spend time at Menri Monastery teaching the nuns Western music on the violin (an instrument he finds especially pleasing), as well as to record and transcribe music. The Music for Menri project was born!
Eileen and her husband John have generously donated violins for the project and also sponsor two young Menri nuns so they may have a complete education.
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