Phowa Foundation
A Special Project of Orgyen Khamdroling

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I attend Dying with Confidence if I’m not a Buddhist?
This program was designed for people who are already Buddhist practitioners, or people who have a desire to practice Buddhism. Many of our trainees were not Buddhists when they began the program, yet had an excellent experience because they had a strong desire to learn more about Buddhism. If you are currently a practitioner, or have been reading and reflecting on the Buddhist teachings, and are looking for a way to develop a Buddhist practice, we think you will have a good experience with our training program.

I have interest and curiosity about Dying with Confidence and Buddhism, but not very much experience with practices or teachings. I am not sure I can confidently make a commitment to the three levels of training. Is there an intermediate class or program I can take that would provide supportive experiences and instruction so that I might be better prepared to make an informed decision?

Yes, there is. The Introductory Dying With Confidence Retreat was specifically designed for just such reasons. Over the course of five days participants are introduced to foundational Buddhist teachings and practices, presented by Anyen Rinpoche, an authentic Buddhist Master. The experience is gentle, informative, and with enough immersion that for most participants, upon completion of the retreat, they will know if proceeding on to training is right for them. The Introductory Dying With Confidence Retreat is also helpful to Buddhist practitioners who would like to explore Phowa teachings or refresh and renew their daily practice.

Are these teachings only for hospice staff or medical professionals working with the dying?
These teachings are open to anyone interested in learning how to work with their own mind so that the moment of death can be harnessed as a vehicle for enlightenment. No prior experience in working with the dying is required.

Can I take Level I and decide afterwards if I want to take Levels II and III?
Students commit to all three trainings prior to sending in their application for Level I. To gain clarity about whether or not to make this significant commitment students have read Rinpoche’s books, Dying with Confidence and Living and Dying With Confidence; have heard Rinpoche offering teachings; have attended an Introductory Dying With Confidence Retreat, and/or have met Rinpoche at a public program and have made a sincere commitment to receiving and accomplishing these teachings.

What if I take Levels I and II, but have a sudden difficult circumstance that makes it difficult for me to attend the Level III with my training cohort?
In this kind of situation, you can contact us as the Phowa Foundation and we will assist you in registering for and attending a subsequent Level III with a different group of students.

How do I get involved with a local group of students who have been through the Dying with Confidence practice program?
We are happy to help you find people near you who regularly do the phowa practice together.

How can I bring a Dying with Confidence Training Program to my area?
Please contact us ( so that we can discuss this possibility!