Employment and Volunteering

Working and Growing

We are first and foremost a spiritual community committed to helping retreaters and staff develop their minds. By joining our team you will

 

  • Offer your talents and skills to an organization dedicating to serving others
  • Nurture a sense of service within yourself
  • Participate in a mindful and contemplative work culture
  • Stimulate your mind by having access to staff classes and our regular program

 

“I feel as if I have found a precious little oasis, where I have the opportunity to work, study and practice amidst an enchanting redwood forest. The atmosphere is one of tranquility and serenity, which I find are very good conditions to cultivate a peaceful mind. Serving a Buddhist community feels very rewarding.”

– Cristian

Our Community

Living in community in an isolated place creates long-lasting friendships and a real sense of teamwork. Co-workers feel more like family. Everyone contributes what they can above and beyond what is required. The “family feeling” Lama Yeshe spoke of still lives on and prospers at Vajrapani Institute.

Living in the Forest

Camping is the main option for work/study volunteers. We have a number of campsites that ensure relative comfort and privacy. Occasionally, a housing option may open up, but this is rare. The weather from May to September is usually quite warm and temperate.

What We Are Looking For

Ideal candidates will

 

  • Possess strong communication skills
  • Be content with rugged and rustic conditions
  • Be comfortable with prolonged relative isolation
  • Have a mature personal spiritual practice
  • Possess an attitude of altruism and generosity
  • Be proactive and organized

 

Being a Buddhist is not a requirement for working here. We welcome practitioners from all traditions.

Study the Dharma

Our staff and work/study participants are welcome to attend any of our programs if it doesn’t conflict with their work schedules. Make sure to mention ahead of time what programs you are most interested in so we can try to make arrangements for you to attend. We have an extensive library with many out of print books, as well as a video library of teachings and documentaries. We have senior practitioners on the land and on staff that are available for interviews and discussions.

Volunteer Work-Study Program

Our Work-Study Program that offers an opportunity to experience living and working in the richness of a Dharma Community.

Here are the details:
  • In exchange for a 28-hour workweek, members of our Work-Study Program are provided with a campsite, nutritious vegetarian meals, and the ability to attend some of the courses offered at the center free of charge.
  • A 3-month minimum commitment.
  • As a member of the Work-Study program, you have the opportunity to be an integral part of our staff that hosts spiritual group retreats and supports individuals on private retreats. 
  • Depending on your interests and aptitudes, you may be asked to support in the following areas:  housekeeping (preparing the facilities for guests), caring for the land, assisting in the kitchen, and various other tasks that may arise. 
  • Ideal candidates have a desire to better themselves, are service-oriented, have an innate flexibility of mind and a willingness to pitch in when and as needed. 
Please note:  Due to our wet winters, our Work-Study program only runs from April-October each year. We happily accept applications from February-July, we will not be  reviewing any applications outside of those months.

Employment Opportunities

Kitchen Manager
The full-time Kitchen Manager directs and leads the Kitchen department in meeting both retreater and staff needs as it relates to meal service and kitchen organization. This position is a precious opportunity to share one’s culinary skills while connecting with a community of dedicated spiritual practitioners.
January 31, 2020
Community Relations Coordinator
The Community Relations Coordinator (CRC) is the primary person responsible for VPI’s Main Office. This means that the CRC takes ownership and responsibility for running the Main Office smoothly, efficiently and spaciously. Because the Main Office is the communication hub of the Institute, the CRC plays a key role in retreater and staff relations. Therefore, providing clear communication, being highly organized, and having sharp attention to detail will foster the harmony that is vital to the delivery of VPI’s retreat services in this role.
January 31, 2020

Upcoming Retreats

Finding Greater Ease: Introduction to Meditation

Elaine Jackson

February 6 - 9, 2020
Everyone wants happiness. Unfortunately, the faulty assumptions by which we live our lives do not afford us the pleasure of abiding in a state of perpetual happiness, peace, and contentment. Buddhism promises such a state. When successfully training our minds through various meditation techniques, happiness follows.

The Heart of Chenrezig: Mindfulness, Self-Compassion & Meditation Techniques for Challenging Times

Venerable Amy Miller

February 27 - March 1, 2020
In this program, Ven. Amy Miller will help us explore how being present with our pain, fear and aversion, and moving with kindness and mindfulness through less than comfortable mind states, is the key to transformation.

Our Blog

  • by Heidi Oehler, Vajrapani Institute’s Executive Director   It’s time to take a deep exhale. Time to breathe and be. How often do you get caught up in the doing? The going? The ‘making’ things happen? Sensing into this energy, can you feel the quality......

Vajrapani Institute is affiliated with the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition www.FPMT.org

The Vajrapani Institue will be closed during the month of January for our staff retreat. We will reopen on Saturday, February 1st.