Timekeeper and Umdze Training with Toby Sifton in Portland

with Toby Sifton

January 26th

Date details +
    Room: Portland

    Timekeeper and Umdze Training with Toby Sifton

    Saturday, January 26, 2019 8:30am – 4:30 pm

    Timekeepers and umdzes (chant leaders) play a lead role in helping provide a practice environment at Shambhala Centers.   Serving the center as an umdze is a rewarding opportunity to deepen your meditation practice while making group sitting sessions available to others.   

    During this full-day training we will explore the view, forms and practice of the timekeeper/umdze. The training will cover how to:

    • greet and welcome people to the center
    • uphold Shambhala shrine room etiquette
    • relate to the various elements on the shrines
    • properly ring the gong; time sitting and walking sessions
    • lead chants (there is no obligation after the training to be a chant leader)
    • maintain a safe environment at all times

    This training is a practice of great generosity and deepening of mindfulness. It is open to anyone interested in leading sits at the Shambhala Centers.  The only requirements are:

    • you have a personal meditation practice
    • feel a personal connection to the Shambhala Center and/or teachings 
    • feel that you are able to sit comfortably in meditation for 25-30 minutes.  

    PLEASE NOTE:  It is strongly suggested that anyone wanting to hold the seat of timekeeper at the new Portland Center at Woodfords Church, attend this training to become familiar with the Woodford layout and specific security procedures. 

    The training is free of charge, but pre-registration is required. 

    For more information, contact Frank Sanfillipo [email protected]





    Toby was trained as an Umdze for his first dathün as a monastic with Pema Chödrön at Gampo Abbey in 1997, was an Umdze at Vajradhatu Seminary in 2000, was practice director in New York in the early 2000s, and then Umdze for monthly Padmasambhava feast practice with Lama Onchen Pegyal and Lady Kunchok in Boulder from 2005 to 2008.  He attended the first Ritual Academy in 2012.