Visiting Teachers

We’ve been fortunate enough to have several international Shambhala teachers come to Melbourne to lead programmes and perform Refuge and Bodhisattva Vow ceremonies. Many have become good friends of Shambhala Melbourne. These teachers include those listed below:


Shashtri Marian Bond

Wellington Shambhala Centre in New Zealand

Marian was firstly a student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and is now a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.  She is the Shastri (senior teacher) for Australia and New Zealand and for many years held the role of Director for our region, organising overseas teachers visits and joint programs such as Enlightened Society Assembly and Warrior Assembly. 


Acharya Emily Bower

Los Angeles, USA

Acharya Emily Bower has been practicing in the Shambhala International Buddhist community in the U.S. since 1987. She became an acharya, or senior teacher, in 2004, at the invitation of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, the spiritual leader of Shambhala International.

Emily is a professional book editor since 1987, specializing in Buddhism, Eastern Philosophy, and Yoga. She began studying with Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche when he came to teach in Berkeley in 1991, and served as his editor for various projects, including his first book, Turning the Mind into an Ally. She is currently working on books for Shambhala Publications, as well as translations of the sutras the international non-profit translation project, She is on the staff of Dharma Spring, a start-up online Buddhist bookstore (look for Dharma Spring on Facebook.).

Emily also travels to teach meditation workshops and lead retreats. Emily has studied kyudo with Kanjuro Shibata Sensei and is a lifelong member of the Dorje Kasung. Her home is in Los Angeles, California, where she lives with her husband, Sanskrit and Tibetan translator Peter Alan Roberts.

Rebecca Hazell

Victoria, Canada

Rebecca Hazell is a respected senior Shambhala teacher, artist, author and educator based in British Columbia, Canada.

She has written, illustrated and published 4 non-fiction children’s books, several educational film strips and designed educational craft kits for children.  She is currently working on a 5th children’s book, and a novel for adults.

Her artistic talents are extremely vast and she has exhibited her watercolor paintings in galleries and boutiques, designed and custom made high-end garments and painted professionally as a needlepoint canvas designer in San Francisco.

She holds a BA from UC Santa Cruz in Russian and Chinese history.

Rebecca spent many years living in the San Francisco Bay area where her 2 children, Elisabeth and Stephan were born.  In 1988 she moved across the continent and spent nearly 2 decades in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She currently lives with her husband of nearly 40 years, Mark, in the beautiful Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island.

Rebecca’s website:


Shastri Samten Kobelt


Samten is senior teacher in the Shambhala Tradition. Born in Switzerland, he first met the dharma in Switzerland in 1984, reading a book by the Druk Sakyong, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. He attended Naropa University in the same year and started his meditation path with Shambhala Training in Boulder. He began teaching in the early 1990s in Europe, and has continued to deepen his training by living and teaching at Karme Choling, Shambhala Mountain Center and most recently, as a Shastri in Boulder, Colorado. He has taught Shambhala and Buddhism as well as Qigong and Contemplative Dance in many places, including the US, Europe and Australia/New Zealand.

Acharya Alyn Lyon

Shambhala Mountain Centre, Colorado, USA

Allyn is currently the resident Acharya at Shambhala Mountain Centre.
Born in Ohio in 1937, Allyn R. Lyon was raised in northern New Jersey. In her “younger days,” Allyn’s interest was in politics and social issues. But somewhere during the course of two marriages and the adoption of her son Chris, it became clear to Allyn that “the ‘problem’ lay in the human mind.” Like many in her generation, Allyn began to read eastern philosophy in the early ’70s. By good fortune, she found herself at The Naropa Institute in the summer of 1974. “Naropa, of course, radically changed my life,” she says. By 1977, Allyn and her son were living at Karmê Chöling. As a meditation instructor, Allyn managed to sit five dathuns and began teaching. She went to the 1979 Vajradhatu Seminary, the first of seven that she would attend as a student, staff member or teacher.

Due to what she calls “interesting karma,” Allyn has held a number of administrative positions in the Shambhala Mandala including at The Naropa Institute, Vajradhatu, and Boulder Karma Dzong. In 1992, she traveled to Asia to direct three Naropa Nepal Programs and then to Crestone, Co to direct two three-month Maitri Space Awareness programs. In 1995, Allyn “found herself volunteering” to take on the position of Director of Rocky Mountain Shambhala Center and during that time, she managed to combine center administration with teaching trips to Europe, Mexico, the Pacific Northwest, and elsewhere.

In 2000 she was appointed an Acharya. Allyn is the resident Acharya for Los Angeles, CA and is on the Board of Casa Werma in Mexico. Recently, she has traveled to South America to teach in Brazil and Chile. She is currently the Resident Acharya at Shambhala Mountain Center, CO where she lives and teaches eight months of the year.

Allyn’s main interest in teaching dharma remains the nature of mind and how it functions: “What is mind? How does practice work with mind? What is real?” But if there’s a bottom line, Allyn says, “it’s that I really enjoy practicing the dharma, teaching and sharing my love of the dharma with students.”

Acharya Allyn Lyon first met Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche at Naropa in 1974. She was named Acharya in 2000. She has served as director of Shambhala Mountain and has served as either student, staff member or teacher at some seven Vajradhatu Seminaries. Allyn has traveled and taught extensively in Europe, the U.S. and Mexico, as well as at Naropa University.
She has served as resident Acharya in both Tepotzlan, Mexico, and Los Angeles, California.

Jesse Miller

California, USA

Jesse has been a student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche for over thirty years and has been directing Shambhala Training programs since 1991. He is also a teacher of Buddhist programs and has worked closely with Pema Chodron in several large programs in the Bay Area and at Shambhala Mountain Center . A member of the Berkeley Shambhala Center, Jesse often travels to other centers to teach and is a regular yearly visitor to the sanghas of Auckland and Wellington in New Zealand.

Janet Solyntjes

Boulder, Colorado, USA

Janet Solyntjes, MA, CYT, a practitioner of mind-body disciplines since 1977, Janet completed a professional training in MBSR with Jon Kabat-Zinn and Saki Santorelli in 2002 and an MBSR Teacher Development Intensive at the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in 2005. Janet leads meditation and yoga retreats in the US,Canada, Australia, and New Zealand and is a senior teacher in the Shambhala tradition and Adjunct Professor at Naropa University.