Guru Viking Podcast

Ep159: Meeting of Ngakpas - Lama Glenn Mullin & Dr Nida Chenagtsang

In this episode I host a dialogue between Tibetologist and Tantric Buddhist Lama Glenn Mullin and doctor of Tibetan Medicine and Yuthok Nyingthig spiritual teacher Dr Nida Chenagtsang.

Lama Glenn and Dr Nida discuss impact of three key revolutionary figures in Tibetan Buddhism from historical and doctrinal perspectives: Padmasambhava, Atisha, and Tsongkhapa.

The discussion extends to include the history and evolution of the famous 6 Yogas of Naropa. Both Lama Glenn and Dr Nida are known to teach these hitherto secretive practices relatively openly, and they discuss the issues that have influenced them to do so, including prophecy, the true meaning of secrecy, and the importance of including the body in religious practice.

Lama Glenn and Dr Nida also discuss subjects such as the geomancy of Samye and the surrounding areas, the pros and cons of the multiplicity of religious sects in Tibet, similarities between Buddhist lineages and Western psychological schools, and more.


Video version:

Also available on Youtube, iTunes, & Spotify – search ‘Guru Viking Podcast’.

Topics include:

00:00 - Intro

01:10 - Jimi Hendrix and Je Tsongkhapa

03:29 - 3 revolutionaries: Padmasambhava, Atisha, Tsongkhapa

09:38 - Tsongkhapa’s 5 stages of the Dzogrim vs 6 Yogas of Naropa

14:13 - Padmasambhava’s big breakthrough

18:07 - Civil war, religious persecution, and Muslim invasion

20:08 - Why was Atisha special?

21:09 - Sect consciousness

21:41 - Tsongkhapa and the Sarma Renaissance

23:27 - Importance of historical perspective in understanding Tibetan Buddhism

26:16 - Samye College & the 5 Perfections

29:27 - Similarities with psychology schools

31:07 - Milarepa and experiential learning

35:38 - Core of all the schools

37:24 - Pros and cons of many schools

41:16 - The geomancy of Samye and Tibet

48:26 - Geomancy and dream yoga

51:36 - Historical evolution of the 6 Yogas of Naropa

56:34 - Why secrecy?

59:06 - Experiential vs academic learning

01:04:07 - Completion stage secrecy doesn’t make sense

01:08:08 - Body liberation is essential in tantra

01:12:47 - Physical activity is important

01:15:07 - Subtle body yogas of vajrayana

01:23:29 - Glenn’s closing remarks on the pros and cons of recent spread of Buddhism

01:33:19 - Nida’s closing remarks on social awareness and finding balance in Buddhist teaching

01:41:14 - The need for female teachers

01:43:32 - BONUS: Lama Glenn & Dr Nida's first meeting (in Tibetan)

Previous episodes with Lama Glenn Mullin:


Previous episodes with Dr Nida Chenagtsang:


To find out more about Lama Glenn Mullin, visit:



To find out more about Dr Nida Chenagtsang, visit:



For more interviews, videos, and more visit:


Music ‘Deva Dasi’ by Steve James

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