About Awakening Vajra

Our Vision

Awakening Vajra will provide an ongoing program for the community for anyone wanting to open their hearts to love compassion and wisdom. There will be a number of  ongoing courses to help create awareness and to facilitate growth and change in a sustainable way.There will be ongoing classes in Meditation and Mindfulness Practice, Retreats, Art and Sculpture,  Wellness Retreats (combining mediation, yoga, alternative healing),  Astrology and Feng Shui, amongst others.

The Awakening Vajra (AV) Center for Awareness is fulfilling the dreams of His Eminence Choden Rinpoche to teach and preserve the Five Branches of study from the Nalanda spiritual tradition. The Five Branches are:

Some Topics to Include:

The 4 Noble Truths – Understanding suffering and its causes, and how to alleviate suffering and its causes.

Understanding Mind and Emotions – How would it feel to over-come anger?
How would it feel to tame extreme desires and addictions?
Overcoming aversion and fear?

The 6 Perfections: Perfection of Generosity, Perfection of Morality, Perfection of Patience, Perfection of Energy – Zeal!, Perfection of Meditation.

The Study of Buddhist Tantra (Vajrayana): There will be courses running on this topic for more advanced students.

Currently we are facing many issues and challenges that are affecting us on both an individual and collective level. These challenges are affecting our physical, mental and emotional well-being.  Our current ways of living, especially in the west are assisting with disconnection on all levels. The AV NZ centers aim is to promote holistic healing for both the individual and the community.

 The Centers aim to provide a safe and supportive environment where individuals of all ages and cultures can come together and feel part of one global family. Please see the course curriculum section for an overview of the courses we will be running for beginners, intermediate and advanced students

Our History

The Awakening Vajra Center for Awareness has been established at the beautiful retreat center of Kawai Purapura, Albany North Shore Auckland. The foundations were laid in April 2014 when Ven Gyalten Senge, (also known as Zac), organised an International Retreat for his teacher, a great Tibetan Yogi, Scholar and Meditator His Eminence Choden Rinpoche.

On the back of the success of this retreat, and with an alignment of values and ethics it was decided to set up the New Zealand Center of “Awakening Vajra” An International Buddhist organisation, Founded By Eminence Choden Rinpoche and Geshe Gyalten, with now 7 centers globally.

“Vajra” is a Sanskrit word meaning both thunderbolt and diamond. Additionally it is a ritual object to symbolize both the properties of a diamond (indestructibility) and a thunderbolt (irresistible force) and represents firmness of spirit and spiritual power.

Buddha Dharma - A Way Of Life

When Buddha Dharma is applied, a whole new way of living and being can facilitate change on a massive level, allowing us to feel more enriched and empowered. 

The Buddha taught “Do no harm, create virtue, and subdue the mind.”  The center will run a range of courses and workshops where this method of living and being can be applied to our everyday lives. When the universal principles of Love and Compassion are applied a whole new potential for living and being can open up before us.  Our experiences of separation and disconnection can change, making us feel more connected to ourselves and others.



Awakening Vajra International  - A Global Center Network

Awakening Vajra (AV) is an international nonprofit 501(c) 3 religious organization, founded in 2010 by Venerable Geshe Gyalten, spiritual heir to H. E. Choden Rinpoche. The main emphasis of Awakening Vajra is to preserve and propagate the Buddhadharma throughout the world. The mission of Awakening Vajra is to preserve and spread the precious teachings of H. E. Choden Rinpoche. AV assists Geshe Gyalten, current spiritual director of AV, in providing extensive Buddhist teachings throughout the world, raises monies for many special ongoing spiritual projects, and strives to fulfill the dream of H. E. Choden Rinpoche to reintroduce and invigorate the Five Branches of study from the ancient Nalanda spiritual tradition through a modern course of study.

We currently have 7 centers worldwide. Taiwan (2), USA, Malaysia, Singapore, Kuala Lumpar, and New Zealand. The head office is based in San Jose, California. We continue to grow, to fulfill the wishes of H.E Choden Rinpoche, to create love and harmony throughout the world. www.awakeningvajra.org