Refuge Vow Ceremony

with Acharya Eric Spiegel

October 1st

Date details +
  • $50 Members
  • $50 Non-members

With the Refuge Vow, we make a commitment to the path of sanity in our own lives.

By taking the RefugeVow we commit ourselves to freedom…There is a general tendency to be involved in all kind of fascinations and delusions, and nothing very much ever takes root in one’s basic being.  Everything in one’s life experience, concerning spirituality or anything else, is purely a matter of shopping…. We have allegiance to “that” and allegiance to “this.” There are hundreds and millions of choices involved in our lives—particularly in regard to our sense of discipline, our ethics and our spiritual path. People are very confused in the chaotic world about what is really the right thing to do.  There are all kinds of rationales, taken from all kinds of traditions and philosophies.  We may try to combine all of them together; sometimes they work together harmoniously.  But we are constant shopping and that is actually the basic problem….

By taking this particular vow, we end our shopping in the spiritual supermarket. We decide to stick to a particular brand for the rest of our lives…. Once we take this step, we have no alternatives; there is no longer the entertainment of indulging in so-called freedom.  We take a definite vow to enter a discipline of choicelessness—which saves us a lot of money, a lot of energy, and lots and lots of superfluous thinking. – Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

Following the Rigden Weekend on September 28-30, 2018, Acharya Spiegel will offer the Refuge and Boddhisattva Vows on Monday, October 1st.  If you aspire to take one of these vows, here is some information which might be useful in preparation.

First, Acharya Spiegel has given a talk for each vow, which will be helpful to listen to in preparation for the weekend, including the Q&A.  Please listen to this talk for the Refuge Vow: 


Second, Acharya Spiegel has provided additional instructions.  He asks that you….

 … purchase the sourcebook for the vow you are intending to take -- these books have talks by a variety of teachers with varying perspectives. Some of the teachers are very traditional in their presentation, and others more contemporary. If you can only read one or two chapters, please read the talks given by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. These chapters are taken from some of the talks he gave at vow ceremonies in the '70s, and they are the most comprehensive view I have seen.

 Please continue your practice in the remaining time leading up to the date you take the vow. This will really help the vow to have genuine meaning. We are taking these vows in order to set something firmly in our mind stream.  On one hand we are all doing the best we can; at the same time if we create the proper ground the seeds will have the best support to take root and be strong.

Both ceremonies will be on Monday evening, October 1, 2018.  Preceding the ceremonies, you will have a short meeting with the Acharya.  Most likely, this will be scheduled on Monday morning.

Please register on our website by July 31st, 2018.  Gainesville Shambhala will order sourcebooks for both vows based on the number of registrants on that date.  The books will be available for purchase at the center.

Those taking the Refuge Vow will need to meet with Acharya Spiegel in advance for a brief private interview. 

The Refuge Vow ceremony is open to the public.  A reception will follow the ceremony.