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Feb 22
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Great Path Tapes and Books

Bodhi guards the Pema Chodron archives. Photo by author.

Joni guards the Pema Chodron archives. Photo by author.

Moving to the Kalamazoo area of Michigan in 1997 from Northern Michigan was as deliberate as it was vague. Robert, an astrologer, had generated astrology charts for us which put our natal planetary positions on a map to help determine a good area for us to move to that was in range of his ailing mother. Both of our astrological charts indicated that the Kalamazoo/Portage area would be auspicious.

For a few years following our arrival, I was employed as a computer typesetter, and Robert as adjunct faculty and tutoring coordinator for two colleges. We started a small Shambhala meditation group that gathered in our living room (and still does!)

In 2000, the task of duplicating and selling Pema Chodron’s audio teachings came our way. Amazingly, because of our decision where to move in 1997, we had landed less than two miles from Lynne Vandebunte, who had been providing students with copies of Ani Pema’s audios for a number of years. When Lynne approached us with the idea of taking over, we answered with a resounding YES!

I immediately quit my job, and Robert followed a year or so later as the demand for Ani Pema’s teachings grew and as the necessity for transferring her teachings to digital media became obvious. At Pema’s request, we became her official archivists. With Robert’s experience in running a mail-order bookstore for Karma Triyana Dharmachakra (seat of His Holiness Karmapa in North America) and my years of working in desktop publishing, along with our shared admiration for Pema Chodron’s teachings, we founded Great Path Tapes and Books.

We began the lengthy task of cataloguing Ani Pema’s teachings and transferring several hundred talks from cassette to digital, work which is ongoing. The search for master audio cassettes and videos continues. If you or your center or meditation group has teachings of Pema Chodron in your library that are not in our catalog, please share them with us for the archive. You can access our catalog here, or write us at [email protected].

[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/CIeetlSjwvg" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

Sales set up at a Pema Chodron program, Omega Institute, New York

Sales set up at a Pema Chodron program, Omega Institute, New York

We are also proud to provide Sounds True and Shambhala Publications with master files for their sets of Pema Chodron’s teachings. Since their ability to distribute to a wide audience is greater than ours, we advise and provide them with notes and suggestions about archival sets for their production. Great Path royalties also support The Pema Chodron Foundation.

Over the years, many people have connected to the dharma through Pema Chodron’s teachings. We often help students find local meditation instructors or Shambhala Meditation Centers or Groups. As a meditation instructor, Robert has connected with a number of students in remote areas through Great Path, whom he advises via email and/or phone.

In general, we are happy to help students go further with the study and practice of buddhadharma, drawing on Pema Chodron’s archive as well as the teachings of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and other dharma teachers. Since we work at home, we are available much of the time.

Robert and I also coordinate the Southwest Michigan Shambhala Meditation Group, staffing Shambhala Training levels and weekend programs in Michigan. Robert is a Shambhala Training director and teacher of Shambhala Buddhism. I continue my studies on the Shambhala Buddhist path and coordinate our local group and classes with the help of our three cats, Gesar, Joni, and Bodhi.

Visit our website for more information: pemachodrontapes.org

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