lady lila rich biography

Lila Rich began studying with Vidyadhara Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche in 1970, when she became a resident of Karme Chöling meditation center, together with her husband Thomas Rich, and their young son. During that period Thomas Rich was asked by Trungpa Rinpoche to be his Regent and the dharma heir to his Buddhist lineage. The family then attended the 1973 Vajradhatu seminary, followed by relocating to Boulder, CO, the headquarters of Vajradhatu and the seat of the Vidyadhara's dharma activity.

In Boulder Thomas Rich began serving on the board of directors of Vajradhatu. Lila Rich gave birth to a second son in 1975. By 1976, the formal public ceremony was conducted to empower Thomas Rich as Vajra Regent and holder of the Kagyü and Nyingma lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. He was given the name Ösel Tendzin (radiant holder of the teachaings) and Lila Rich was given the title Lady Lila Rich. In 1979, Lady Rich was appointed as international director of the Shambhala Training program that had been co-founded by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and Ösel Tendzin. She served in that capacity until 1989, teaching extensively throughout North America and Europe.

In 1985 the Vidhadhara relocated the seat of Vajradhatu to Halifax, Nova Scotia. The family of Lady Rich and Ösel Tendzin had expanded with twins, a boy and a girl, and the entire family moved to Halifax that year. Following the passing of the Vidyadhara in the spring of 1987, her husband assumed the presidency of Vajradhatu. Two years later, Ösel Tendzin became seriously ill, at which time the family moved to Ojai, California, to be near the place where he was doing an extended spiritual retreat.

After the death of her husband in 1990, Lady Rich and their children remained in California where she served the community of the Vajra Regent's students who had also gathered there. She was instrumental in the founding of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin Library and Archives, of which she is director, as well as the inception of Satdharma, established as the seat of the Vajra Regent's successor, Patrick Sweeney, Trimé Lhawang. Satdharma is the umbrella organization for the propagation of the teachings of the lineage inheritance from the Vidyadhara and the Vajra Regent.

Lady Rich directs the continued expansion of the activities of the Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin Library.