History of our centre
Kagyu Samye Dzong Cardiff started in 1997, operating from Anthony’s attic in his house in Caerphilly. The shrine room was decorated in traditional Tibetan style and colours. There were thangkas on the walls and a lovely small shrine. Our dear late teacher, Akong Rinpoche, came and blessed the shrine room. It could hold about 15 of us. He was accompanied by Gelong Thubten and Ani Tsultrim from Samye Ling Monastery in Scotland.
We then moved from Anthony’s attic to proper premises in Caerphilly, which were overlooking Caerphilly castle and the moat. We rented this place from 2008 to 2015.
Ani Kunzang from Samye Ling came and taught us how to play musical instruments for pujas, as well as instructions on many of the deity practices. We would also hire retreat places in Southerndown where she would run Dharma weekends. Donal Creedon came and gave many teachings and ran retreats with us in various places. such as the Gower, Porthcawl, Broneirion, Mid Wales and many other venues for over 10 years. Regular teachers such as Gelong Thubten and Ken Holmes gave teachings every year.
We also hired venues in Cardiff to run our meditation classes for many years.
We were all so fortunate to have Akong Rinpoche give empowerments, such as Medicine Buddha, Guru Rinpoche, Chenrezig and Green Tara, as well as teachings in Cardiff. We were truly blessed. We hired Insole Court, St Michael’s College and many other venues and it soon became evident we needed our own place as the Cardiff group needed a home. On one occasion we had the Very Venerable Dulmo Choje Rinpoche and his attendant, as well asTulku Pasang to stay with us in the Manor House Hotel, Cardiff, where we totally transformed the lounge into a Shrine room for empowerments and teachings.
A couple of our volunteers were going to India; we gave them a map of Cardiff and asked them to take it to HE Thrangu Rinpoche to ask him if he would point to where we should have a centre. He drew a circle on the map where he felt the centre should be. We ended up buying a centre and we discovered later that our centre sits within the circle he had drawn on our map.
We finally purchased our own centre in the heart of Cardiff in 2015. Our dear teacher Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche opened the centre in June 2015. (Video above) Our group of volunteers were and are amazing people. They were working until early hours of the morning to paint, plaster, clean and get the place ready for the opening. Lama Yeshe Rinpoche blessed all corners of the building. Then as he stood outside the building he said “I see 3 flags over all 3 buildings”. How right he was. We bought the 252 building in 2016 and the 248 building in 2017. HH Karmapa blessed the photographs of our buildings after us seeing him in Sarnarth, India in 2015, then again after his teachings in Nurburging, Germany in 2016, and after his teachings in Paris, France in 2017.
We have been running our centre successfully from the three adjloining buildings since 2017.