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A Brief History of Pema Osel Ling & The Vajrayana Foundation

The story of Pema Osel Ling (Lotus Land of Clear Light) begins in 1984 when Lama Tharchin Rinpoche, an accomplished Tibetan Buddhist Lama (teacher) of the Nyingma tradition, came to America. In 1988 he settled in Santa Cruz, CA and founded the non-profit Vajrayana Foundation to preserve the spiritual, cultural, and artistic traditions of Tibetan Buddhism through education, sacred arts, meditation retreats, and text translation. 

By 1990, the Foundation had outgrown its small center and began searching for another home. A gentle rain left Camp Corralitos glistening on a morning in November when an excited group of members visited. Lama Tharchin quickly recognized the special beauty of the land that has both redwood groves and panoramic views. With generous support, the Foundation was able to purchase the property and Pema Osel Ling was born.

Lama Tharchin Rinpoche

We began hosting group events and weddings as a way to support our non-profit activity and to share the peace and beauty of this land with everyone. When you are here, we invite you to visit our Shrine area.  You will see a 20-foot statue of the Buddha Padmasambhava, three reliquary stupas and other traditional Tibetan art work created here on the land under the direction of Lama Tharchin Rinpoche and our current spiritual director, Lama Sonam Tsering Rinpoche and his brother Tulku Jamyang Rinpoche. You can also stroll down the redwood and madrone forest trail to our Stupa World Peace Park, where you will see a truly unique spiritual monument.

Lama Sonam at Pema Osel Ling
Stupas at Pema Osel Ling

The pristine redwood setting, with views of the Monterey Bay, offers a place of refuge and renewal for guests throughout the year and a wide variety of people, from all faiths and backgrounds, choose to hold their events at Pema Osel Ling, in support of our mission to cultivate the Buddhist ideals of peace and compassion.

*We request that our guests follow rules of conduct in accordance with our spiritual practice. These include: no smoking on the land; no abuse of drugs; no use or threat of physical violence; no propagation of misguided racial or sexual attitudes, abuse, or harassment.  

May All Beings Benefit

Stupa at Pema Osel Ling

Photo: C Wagner Photography

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