Home > The Sangdo Palri Temple of Wisdom and Compassion

sangdo palri temple side view

The Sangdo Palri Temple of Wisdom and Compassion is a seat for the Longchen Nyingtik tradition of the Nyingma Lineage as transmitted by Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche.  The Sangdo Palri Temple is located at Longchen Jigme Samten Ling, Mangala Shri Bhuti’s retreat center in Crestone, Colorado, whose rugged natural beauty and deep silence make an ideal setting for a building dedicated to spiritual awakening. Many great teachers, such as HH 16th Gyalwa Karmapa and Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, have said that Crestone is an ideal location for spiritual practice. In this setting, the Sangdo Palri Temple is a beacon of hope, a reminder of our inclination toward the spiritual path, a modern pilgrimage spot, and a stronghold of aspirations and prayers. Read more.

The Temple’s design follows a traditional four-sided mandala shape. Inside the three shrine rooms rest one on top of the next. This Sangdo Palri Temple departs from traditional Tibetan architecture, however, while featuring Tibetan elements inside and out,  the style is more Japanese, where the use of wood, plain outer walls, curved roofs, and simple colors complement the natural setting. The blend of the Tibetan and Japanese elements make this Sangdo Palri Temple a unique vision, conceived by Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, and executed by architect Kelly Smith.

guru rinpoche statue in the main shrine room

Inside the Temple’s three shrine rooms continue to blend the simplicity of Japanese architecture aesthetic with the richness of the Tibetan tradition. Their purpose is to create a sacred environment that catalyzes our innate appreciation of the spiritual. The main floor is devoted almost entirely to a large shrine hall with a Guru Rinpoche statue as the central focus. With 14-18 foot ceilings, many large windows and a clear story, this shrine room features columns, colors and ornamentation drawn from classical Tibetan monasteries; this floor also houses a library, three protector rooms, cooking and tsok preparation facilities, and a sitting room for teachers. The second floor, with its lovely verandas, is entirely a shrine room, this one devoted to Avalokiteshvara, the bodhisattva of compassion. The third floor shrine room, with an arched ceiling, will be a seat for Amitabha and many lineage statues. Including the basement, where various systems and facilities sit, the building is about 6,800 sq feet.

Altogether the Sangdo Palri Temple represents the pure realm of Guru Rinpoche, a state of being completely free from ordinary perceptions and ignorance. The more open our mind is, the more this realm is accessible. For all who visit the Temple is a place of refuge and peace, prayer and aspiration, enlightened vision and compassion.

The Temple has regular visiting periods each month, weather dependent during the Winter. *Please note visiting hours are suspended during the Covid-19 pandemic crisis.