On The Nagi Gompa Nuns

“For me, the most inspiring thing about the Nagi nuns is that they are always practicing.  Whatever activity it is they are doing around the nunnery, the more time that I would spend with them the more I could see, it is not normal activity for them when they are cleaning or cooking, or taking care of Yangsi Rinpoche [Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche’s reincarnation], or taking care of the guests who would come, or the guests who come to see Rinpoche also.

Serving tea, and cooking meals, and helping the Westerners to settle in, and helping the trekkers who come by, and helping all the animals who wander in… I mean, it’s really a place that is open to everyone.  They never turn anyone away.  And every person who walks in the door is welcome, and is really treated as a guest, as a sentient being who is suffering and who doesn’t want to suffer, and who if we can possibly help in any way, then let’s do it, let’s help them. 

So, for me, it was so inspiring!  Because I would be with Ani Sonam doing dishes, or with Ani Gyen Tara helping to clean up, or helping to set up space, or helping to cook… and their … how to say it, their eyes were always looking inwards, rather than looking outwards.

There is really this sense of everything, everything, everything is part of practice.  And to not reject anything.  Just to work with everything that comes.  So I learned so much from them.  I mean, of course, I also learned about the practices, the sadhanas, and things like that, but mostly I learned about how to use daily life as practice.  That has stuck with me – now I have been gone like almost 5 years – and I hope that never leaves.  And if it ever starts to wane, then for sure I need to go back and spend more time with them.

I miss them terribly… I mean, I spent a lot of time from 2008 until 2014.  I just spent all my free time with them that I could.  And I learned so much and I am so grateful!  I hope very very much that other people will be as inspired by the nuns as I was, becase they have been probably the strongest influence on my path.

I felt Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche… I felt his teachings just by spending time with his nuns.  I mean, I had seen videos and I had read books, but I was able to understand and try to live my life that way because of the example they had set.

~ Ani Sangye

American Nun
Gomde Pyrenees, France


Watch The Yogini Project’s Interview with Ani Gyen Tara, Nagi Gompa


Three year retreatant nuns after their retreat with Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche and Ani Choying Drolma


Top Photo:  Ani Sangye with Ani Gyen Tara.

All Photos at Nagi Gompa by Chris Zvitkovits.