Love & Life’s Purpose – Empowerment of Buddha Maitreya and Teachings on Loving Kindness

Love is a central theme around which we can orient our entire life. A life filled with love is a life well-lived, a meaningful life, a life that brings tremendous joy and benefit to ourselves and others.

During this special weekend event, Gen Kelsang Rigpa will grant the blessing empowerment of Buddha Maitreya, the enlightened manifestation of pure love, and give teachings on “Love and Life’s Purpose.”

Training in these beautiful and empowering ways of thinking, we will gain the profound ability to learn to love others, bringing deep peace, happiness and meaning to our life. Through the practice of love, each day will have a clear direction and purpose, and we will gradually access our potential to experience a powerful, pure, and all-embracing love that brings tremendous joy and meaning to our family, friends, and finally to all living beings.



Empowerment & Teachings

Gen Kelsang Rigpa is an American Buddhist monk, the Western US National Spiritual Director and the Resident Teacher at KMC-Hollywood. He is a close disciple of Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, having received lineage blessings and oral transmissions directly from him.

Gen Rigpa’s heartfelt and practical teachings are presented with warmth and humor, making them accessible to everyone. He shows the joy of living a spiritual life, and is an inspiring example of Buddhism in practice. Through his clear presentation, he is able to help students discover for themselves how to integrate these timeless teachings into our modern world, making everyday life joyful and meaningful.


Kadam Lucy James is the Resident Teacher at KMC Colorado. One of the senior teachers of Kadampa Buddhism, Kadam Lucy has taught extensively in England, Florida, and San Francisco. Kadam Lucy is appreciated for her deep wisdom, clear mind, and inspiring yet practical presentation of Buddha’s teachings and meditations. She is very skilled at explaining how to make these teachings immediately effective in our busy modern lives, to help both ourselves and everyone around us.


Gen Kelsang Wangpo is the Resident Teacher at KMC Houston, and has taught in Olympia and Tacoma, Washington, as well as in Santa Barbara, California for many years. Gen Wangpo is well known for his practical and skilled way of presenting ancient Buddhist wisdom. He is particularly talented in analyzing subjects deeply, from many angles. With this, he is able to deliver advice that is effective and produces quick results. Combined with many years of Buddhist learning, and over a decade of teaching, he provides powerful spiritual guidance that benefits all aspects of human life.


Gen Kelsang Menla has studied under the guidance of Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche for over 20 years and was requested by him to become the Resident Teacher of Kadampa Meditation Center Texas in June 2017. Gen Menla was ordained as a Kadampa Buddhist monk in 2001 and has worked and taught within the New Kadampa Tradition for many years. He brings a warm heart and joyful attitude to sharing Buddha’s teachings and the practice of meditation.



Intro – 7:30pm-9pm
with Kadam Lucy James


Meditation – 9am-10am
with Gen Wangpo

Empowerment – 11am-1pm with Gen Rigpa

Commentary – 4pm-5:30pm with Gen Rigpa



Meditation – 9am-10am
with Gen Wangpo 

Commentary – 11am-12:30pm with Gen Rigpa

Commentary – 4pm-5:30pm with Gen Rigpa

Retreat Session #1: 7:30-8:30pm with Gen Menla



Retreat – 9am-10am
with Gen Menla

Retreat – 11am-12pm
with Gen Menla

The Empowerment is only available at the the time it is scheduled for and not available for replay. This is the NKT’s new policy for Empowerments. All sessions will be available until 1 week after (PDT)


Who can register?

The Southwest Dharma Celebration is open to the people of the Southwest region of the United States. This includes: Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Colorado. As well as: Nevada, Utah, Idaho, North and South Dakota.

If you do not live in the Southwest region of the United States but had planned to attend the Celebration in person at IKRC Grand Canyon before it became a livestream event, you are welcome to register. 

Late Bookings

Registrations received within 24 hours of the start of the event, will receive the links to the teachings at least 24 hours after registration. To ensure that you receive links to the sessions in a timely manner, please do not book last minute.

Receiving  Links to the Sessions

You will receive an email with details of how you will access links to the sessions.

Everyone who can is encouraged to join the sessions together at the actual times they are being streamed. However, we understand this is not always possible. The teaching Celebration session links will remain active until 12pm (PDT) 1 week after the celebration to allow time for you to watch according to your own schedule or re-watch as you’d like.

COVID Guidelines

Due to the uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic, in-person SWDC guidelines and attendance will depend on Arizona state and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) COVID-19 guidelines, and the Celebration organizers’ discretion. We will update the below guidelines as needed and will inform anyone booked of any changes if needed.

In accordance with the CDC, fully vaccinated people are not required to wear masks or socially distance at IKRC Grand Canyon during the SWDC, but are welcome to continue to do so. In accordance with federal CDC guidance, unvaccinated individuals are responsible for continuing to wear masks, and to keep six foot distance from others where possible.

In the interest of the safety of everyone who attends, we strongly request that unvaccinated individuals don’t stay in dorm or shared accommodations because face coverings cannot be worn and proper social distancing cannot be maintained in these spaces, but instead book private/single rooms, camping or off-site accommodations.

Celebration Pricing:

In-person Celebration
Full Celebration:

Online Celebration
Full Celebration:
Saturday Only:

Accommodation Pricing
(please click on link for details):

Audio Recordings Pricing:

May be purchased when making a booking. Audio recordings are of the teaching sessions and empowerment talk only, and do not include the guided meditations, retreat sessions or chanted prayers. Recordings may only be purchased for sessions that you have registered for. Recordings are for the sole use of the registered recipient and should not be shared.

Full Event: $25
Saturday Only:

You must register for the whole event in order to also
purchase the audio recordings.

The recordings only include the teaching sessions, including the empowerment talk, but not the morning meditations.

Cancellations and Refunds

A $5 admin fee will be retained for all cancellations up to 24 hours before the start of the Celebration. Within 24 hours of the start of the Celebration, all fees are non-refundable. Any non-refunded fees for cancellations received will be donated to the NKT International Temples Project.

Tharpa Collection

To support your celebration, visit Tharpa at Maitreya Collection.

Contact Us

Questions about the Southwest Dharma Celebration?

Our office is open Monday – Friday from 9am – 5pm (PDT)

(928) 637-6232