August 2019

The Process Team (PT) Working Groups (WGs) continue to evolve. In this update, several WGs share information on their progress. You may notice that not all WGs report every month; some groups are continuing to work on projects mentioned in the last update, as well as exploring ways to take these to the community; some groups are revisiting their objectives or dissolving; and many have shared their updates below. As always, please feel free to contact us if you have questions or comments.

The Process Team Steering Committee (SC)

The PTSC has been reflecting on the journey we embarked upon at the beginning of this year and clarifying where we hope the work of the PT will go. Much of our recent effort has focused on how best to help the work of the PT “land” (in other words, become useful for the community, in the real world). To this end, we have enlisted the help of people inside and beyond the PT to introduce Theory U to those unfamiliar with this social change methodology and to invite interested PT and community members to train alongside us. You may read more about Theory U, why we settled on this methodology, how to enroll, and much more on the PT website (Theory U links appear on the left menu).

The Survey Working Group (SWG)

The SWG administered the second major online survey of the Shambhala community since our last update. Nearly 3,000 people participated in this survey about experiences with the Care and Conduct policy. The Interim Board will report results to the community in the next few weeks. The SWG is working with the Process Team and the Interim Board to prepare several more surveys for late 2019.

The Community Building Working Group: Centre and Group Support Sub-Group

The Centre and Group Support Working Group has launched a Director’s Cafe series, consisting of zoom drop-in meetings, for anyone in Centre or Group leadership to share experiences and seek input. They have also implemented a system of Centre Liaisons, so that any Centre or Group can have one PT member as their channel for two-way communication. Please email if you are in Centre leadership and wish to have more information about either of these initiatives.

The Charter Working Group (a combined Sub-Group from Governance and Processes)

The Charter Working Group collectively produced a short list of strategic aims linking our group’s mission and vision statements, then created a template which we distributed to other PT working groups, asking that they submit strategic aims as our next step in creating a Charter. At every step of the process, our group examined how key words are defined and used in many of the first languages spoken by Shambhala members.

The Governance Working Group: Models Sub-Group

Over the past few months, Government Models completed our Ground and Mission statements, and began:

    • Interviewing current and former leaders in Shambhala/Vajradhatu about their experiences of our organization’s governing structures
    • Developing questions to be sent to Acharyas and other teachers about their understanding of VCTR and SMR’s political teachings
    • Developing survey questions regarding Shambhala’s governance to be sent to all members, and
    • Organizing a library of writings from both within and outside of Shambhala about enlightened governance.

We are clearly in a “gathering” stage and are feeling very curious about the interview, questionnaire, and survey responses that will be coming our way!

The Governance Working Group: Finance and Legal Sub-Group (FLWG)

The Finance and Legal Working Group has been actively working toward gathering information more widely, using multiple approaches:

    1. Generating a list of people with official experience of financial and legal matters in Shambhala to interview “formally,” as well as questions to ask them
    2. Developing an informal network of people in Shambhala (with or without official positions) to have conversations with about their perspective on financial and legal matters; and
    3. Considering the possibility of offering some open zoom calls for discussion of Shambhala financial and legal matters.

We expect to move forward with these initiatives in September.

The Theory U Planning and Implementation Team

The Theory U Planning and Implementation Team invited the Shambhala community to participate in the Fall uLab and the Shambhala Hub. As of the end of August, over 200 Shambhalians have registered for the uLab and we are really looking forward to learning with everyone! The uLab starts on September 12th, and you can continue to enroll in it after that time and catch up. Please email PT Theory U Coordinator Nancy KapLon at if you have enrolled in the uLab or have any questions. Instructions for signing up for the Shambhala Hub (after enrolling in the uLab or otherwise training in Theory U) can be found here.