Named after the great Nyingma saint Longchenpa’s favourite retreat centre and final resting place, Orgyan Osal Cho Dzong is a 350 acre centre for the study and practice of Nyingma Dharma. Located in southeastern Ontario near the town of Madoc, the centre is situated in the midst of an extensive forest at the foot of Mount Moriah, an ancient aboriginal power spot and south-eastern Ontario’s highest peak. The centre’s facilities include a large temple featuring a 7 foot tall Shakyamuni Buddha Statue, a 15 room retreat house and a Lama house. Orgyan Dzong was founded by Ven. Peling Tulku, Rinpoche in 1984 and blessed by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche during the transmission of the Long Chen Nying Thig in 1988. The centre is renowned for its natural beauty and an energy which is extremely conducive to Dharma practice.
The name of the centre, Orgyan Osal Cho Dzong, can be translated as The Citadel of Padmasambhava’s Clear Light Dharma. The Tibetan word Orgyan is the name of Padmasambhava’s homeland (Sanskrit: Oddiyana), which was north west of India, in present day Pakistan/Afghanistan, and signifies Padmasambhava and the Nyingma (ancient) Lineage. Osal (Sanskrit: Prabhasvara) is translated as Clear Light, the primordial enlightened nature of all beings. Cho (Sanskrit: Dharma) are the teachings of the Buddha, and Dzong is a fortress or citadel. This name is commonly abbreviated to Orgyan Dzong for convenience.
An interesting coincidence occurred when Ven. Peling Tulku Rinpoche named the centre. In Tibetan, the signifier for the “O” vowel, called ‘naro’, looks like a soaring bird, and is placed above its related consonant, thus the name of the centre, Orgyan Osal Cho Dzong, has four naro marks above it: