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Contemplative Photography and Liberation: The Outer and Inner Teachings

June 3, 2023 @ 1:00 pm - July 8, 2023 @ 3:00 pm

yellow and blue reflection - water - Impressionism - Miksang - copyright - John McQuade

“If you are able to relax – relax to a cloud by looking at it, relax to a drop of rain and experience its genuineness – you can see the unconditionality of reality… you experience a vast realm of perceptions unfolding… the realm of perception is limitless, so limitless that perception itself is primordial… there are endless fields of perception.”

– Chogyam Trungpa, Shambhala Sacred Path of the Warrior


This course will take you on a deep dive into the world of contemplative photography and is open to everyone. No previous dharma or photography experience is required!

A basic introduction to the practice of contemplative photography will be explored – as well as the liberation aspects of this practice.

This course works with both our sense of Sight and Insight – which leads to a different and fresh way of seeing and experiencing our world. So it is both a dharma practice and a contemplative art exploration.

The “clear seeing” you will experience as a part of this course opens up many realms of perception that we typically do not engage with in our daily life. We will explore some fields of perception such as flowers and weeds, the “ordinary world” and impressionism. We will contemplate how this “true perception way” has implications for more primordial insight and deep realization.

We will also contemplate some Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche texts from the books True Perception and Shambhala: Sacred Path of the Warrior. If you do not have these books, excerpts will be provided.

The course proceeds through teachings, assignments, and assignment reviews. No photographic experience necessary, but a digital camera is required. A smartphone camera is workable.

Read John’s McQuade’s article in the Shambhala Times titled Contemplative Art and Liberation: How it Works, here.

About the Teacher

John McQuade is a long time student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and is a Shambhala Training Teacher and Meditation Instructor. He is also a Maitri Five Wisdoms Teacher and a founder of Nalanda Miksang Contemplative Photography (www.miksang.org). He is the co-author of two books: Looking and Seeing and Heart of Photography. He teaches contemplative arts ( www.dralaimage.com) and holds a PhD in Phenomenology.


June 3, 2023 @ 1:00 pm
July 8, 2023 @ 3:00 pm
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Shambhala Online
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