The 3 Doors Online Compassion Project
Sept 30, 2020-May 19, 2021

The 3 Doors Compassion Project teaches simple, accessible meditation practices to healthcare professionals, educators, therapists, and those who wish to empower their capacity to serve others and experience the benefits of self-compassion. In this 9-month program, we will explore how The 3 Doors meditation practices of body, speech, and mind can support personal transformation and the emergence of positive qualities in relation to self, family, and community.

Through personal reflection and meditation, you will develop skills to prevent burnout and restore your natural resilience.  This program supports you to:

  • Renew energy and reduce stress levels 
  • Respond to others from a place of presence and compassion
  • Practice self-compassion 
  • Recognize and deeply experience moments of joy
  • Process difficult or painful situations with more ease
  • Learn ancient Tibetan meditation practices from the Dzogchen tradition of Bon Buddhism — taught in a way that is relevant and accessible

Program Design

The 3 Doors online Compassion Project is an interactive course taught on video conference with supplemental small group practice/discussion sessions as well as a virtual resource room of recorded guided meditations from the live sessions. The delivery structure is flexible to accommodate work schedules. If you miss or would like to review a session again, you will have access to stream or download the teachings and guided practices. 

Led by The 3 Doors Senior Teachers, Marcy Vaughn and Gabriel Rocco, this 9-month course supports you in learning, applying, and deepening your meditation practice in the warmth of a community of fellow practitioners. 

Our first Wednesday class introduces the three doors of body, speech, and mind: stillness, silence, and spaciousness. Through drawing your attention inward and resting your attention on these doors you can find a sense of inner refuge that has qualities of spaciousness, awareness, and warmth. Becoming familiar with this refuge is the foundation of our training, and your capacity to abide within it is deepened and strengthened in all subsequent sessions. We introduce the informal practice of the Three Precious Pills. Recommended reading is the first half of Awakening the Luminous Mind and pages 1-28 of Spontaneous Creativity.

The second Wednesday class builds on the foundation of inner refuge and focuses on the fundamental ways our recognition of the inner refuge is obscured: through aversion, attachment, and ignorance. We reflect on our awareness of these patterns in our life and introduce the practice of the Nine Breathings of Purification (practice of channels and winds) to release these patterns and support a relationship with the sacred body. The source book for these teachings is the first section of Tenzin Wangyal’s Awakening the Sacred Body.

The third Wednesday class introduces the chakra system of the body and continues to explore the principle of inner winds that hold habitual patterns and obscure our recognition of our natural mind, source of compassion and positive qualities. Through the practice of Tsa Lung (yogas of breath and movement) we increase our awareness of the subtle energy centers in order to clear habitual patterns and connect to openness, supporting us to be able to live life and respond to others in a more authentic way. The source book: Awakening the Sacred Body.

The fourth Wednesday class explores the dimension of speech. We engage the power of sound and silence through the meditation practice of the Five Warrior Syllables. We will pay particular attention to the way we experience sound to help clear obstacles that prevent us from being fully present and to support the emergence of positive qualities such as the warmth of well-being and compassion for self and others. The book Tibetan Sound Healing will be referenced. Read pages 31-79 in Spontaneous Creativity.

The fifth Wednesday class focuses on personal reflection and identifying patterns of habitual response and obstacles to compassion in relation to oneself. We discuss pain body/identity, pain speech, and pain mind. We explore becoming conscious of these limiting experiences of self and hosting these patterns while abiding in open awareness and through using the Nine Breathings, Tsa Lung, and the Five Warrior Syllable practices. We explore how pain becomes our path to compassion, and particularly self-compassion.

One important aspect of your journey in the Compassion Project is to engage the process of transformation, the practice of bringing presence to a separate and limited sense of self, a pain identity, with compassion. You will be encouraged to reflect in three areas of your life: your relationship to yourself, your relationships with family and close friends, and your relationship to your professional life and community. In month five, we focus on the first area, relation to self. Throughout the next month, using formal and informal practices of the 3 Doors methods, you will be asked to articulate the progression of your practice by reflecting on the suffering of separation and any obstacles to self-compassion, finding support in your formal and informal practice to bring presence to these experiences, and noticing any shifts or changes you experience in your life as you bring challenges into practice. We provide a four-step template to guide this process, and ask that you to apply it to one pain identity in relationship to self. We will reference pages 76-79 (part of last month’s reading) in Spontaneous Creativity.

The sixth Wednesday class focuses on increasing familiarity with the transformative power of our practices. We now focus on being present to family pain and challenges in our close relationships. We reflect on the presence or absence of compassion in those relationships, hosting the collective relationship and family pain body as it lives in us. As we bring presence to pain, we open to the warmth of compassion that becomes available. This month you will be asked to identify one pain identity in the area of family, bring this to formal and informal practice, noticing any changes in your life as a result, and articulate this process through the four-step template.

In the seventh Wednesday class you will be supported to focus your reflection and practice on a pain identity that arises in your professional life or in relation to institutional and societal pain as you experience it. You will explore your relationship to organizations, to media, to information about the collective, and to the visions that you carry of this larger sense of “other.” Recognizing your pain body, speech, and mind and practicing with this pain as an opportunity or door, you will explore how to bring pain to the path and to experience compassion. This month you will be asked to identify one such pain identity in the area of work and society, bring it to both formal and informal practice, noticing any changes in your life as a result, and articulate the process through the four-step template.

This will be a day of group retreat consisting of three 3-hour sessions of practice throughout the day, deepening our relationship with the practices. The meditation sessions will be guided and there will be opportunity to share experiences that come up. Meditation Intensive Schedule: 7 am – 10 am; 10:30 am – 1:30 pm 2:30 pm – 5:30 pm EST. (You are encouraged to attend at least two of these sessions and all three if possible.)

In our eighth class we articulate the process of hosting the pain body, speech, and mind as we encounter this within our relation to self, family, or institution or group. Choosing one pain identity to stay with for this class, we engage the practice of stillness, silence, and spaciousness to experience the pain and allow it fully. We acknowledge the support of group practice to host our pain with openness, awareness, and warmth, and to be present to its dissolution, recognizing a fresh and new space once occupied by pain. It is the recognition of openness (wisdom) which allows for the emergence of the healing quality—compassion. We explore the power of intention in our meditation practice as we engage the phrase: “In liberating my own being may I benefit others.” Read pages 101-118 in Spontaneous Creativity.

In the ninth and final class we review the principles of the path of The 3 Doors Compassion Project. We review the basic concepts of the three doors, what the doors access in terms of the inner refuge, what is pain identity, pain speech, and pain imagination, and how pain becomes the path to liberation. We are reminded of the 4-step template for processing transformations and the invitation to continue to journal and give voice to our practice. We take this time to express the fruits of our experiences through our nine month journey. We end by dedicating the merits of our time together, including loved ones and colleagues who are injured, ill, oppressed or forgotten, or who have recently died by bringing them to mind and hosting them in our practice in the warmth of compassion.


The most helpful part of the program for me was the support of the small groups, providing the opportunity to practice intimately, twice a month, and benefit from each other’s questions and sharing. As an Academy graduate and later a 3 Doors Presenter, I found it invaluable to hear the subtle changes Marcy and Gabriel made in their teaching and vocabulary over the years. The recordings and the current ongoing monthly guiding continue to be a wonderful support.

Renée D. - Hospice volunteer

I was grateful for a chance to deepen my meditation practice and appreciate the perspectives that Marcy and Gabriel each bring. I also loved the diverse community of practitioners. In every small group experience, I found what others offered as a way to deepen my own experience. Also, having the opportunity to share my experience, helped me clarify and own it, which, for me leads to on-going reflection.

Denise J. - Nonprofit Executive Director

Because I’ve spent most of my life doing and not necessarily “being”, this is a seismic shift in my approach to living – and the benefits are profound… Being able to just be with the things that I struggle with is another level of self-care that I haven’t ever experienced before.

Tami B. - Surgeon

I’ve gained more understanding in relationships with my clients and a lot more compassion for the nurses and nursing aides I work with. I’m able to see what they have to deal with and understand a lot better where they’re coming from.

Ted J. - Music Therapist

Because my own practice is deepening, it comes into how I teach. Last weekend I did a workshop on cultivating compassion and I could really feel the depth of my own practice supporting how I was able to hold the space.

Aleeze M. - Assoc. Director Mindfulness Institute

I find that there is a settling that is noticeable after a few months in the 3 Doors. I am able to trust that just being there is helpful, without the pressure to make the right interpretation and say the right thing. Something is different in me. It is more enjoyable.

Rebecca E. - Psychologist - Director of Clinical Training

Program Details:

DATES/TIMES: Sept 2020 – May 2021

  • 9 Whole Group Sessions of teaching and practice, with both teachers. These 2.5 hour monthly sessions are held on Wednesdays from 11:00 am – 1:30 pm New York time (Time Zone Calculator), and you will have access to stream and download these recordings.
    • September 30, 2020
    • October 28, 2020
    • November 18, 2020
    • December 16, 2020
    • January 27, 2021
    • February 24, 2021
    • March 17, 2021
    • April 21, 2021
    • May 19, 2021
  • 8 Community Practice Sessions, monthly 1.5 hour sessions are open to all current and past Compassion Project participants.  They will be held on Wednesdays at 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. New York time.  Time Zone Calculator
    • October 7, 2020
    • November 11, 2020
    • December 9, 2020
    • January 6, 2021
    • February 10, 2021
    • March 10, 2021
    • April 14, 2021
    • May 12, 2021
  • 1 Full Day Practice Retreat on April 25, 2021. Attend at least two of the three 3-hour sessions offered: 7 am – 10 am; 10:30 am – 1:30 pm; 2:30 pm – 5:30 pm New York time.  Time Zone Calculator
  • 16 Small Group Sessions of practice and discussion, half with Marcy Vaughn and half with Gabriel Rocco. These sessions are held twice a month, 1.5 hours a session and are limited to 8-10 people for personalized attention. There are scheduling options, so you will be able to choose times that are convenient for you. The small group sessions are not recorded.

TEACHERS: Marcy Vaughn and Gabriel Rocco

TRANSLATION:  Live Spanish translation available on dedicated Zoom channel.

RECORDINGS:  Access to the whole-group teachings and guided meditations available to stream or download.

DISCUSSION ROOM:  A chat function in our learning management system enables participants to share experiences and ask questions of the teachers at any time. Information and access to this chat room is kept strictly confidential among participants.

COST:  Early bird cost of $1395 or $155 per month until Sept 10, 2020.  Regular price $1450.00 or $161 per month. You may choose to pay the entire fee or set up automatic monthly payments at the time of registration.

CANCELLATION POLICY:  No refunds are provided once the program has begun. If you are paying in installments, you are still responsible for the full 9 month tuition.

SUPPORT MATERIALS:  4 recommended books by Tenzin Wangyal (and edited by Marcy Vaughn), available on Amazon, approximate total cost $60:  Awakening the Luminous MindAwakening the Sacred BodyTibetan Sound Healing, and Spontaneous Creativity.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Health care professionals, educators, therapists, caregivers, and anyone who is motivated by compassion.

If you have questions, please contact


Program Commitments

The 3 Doors Compassion Project is a nine-month commitment of focus and energy. You will be invited to fulfill these requirements:

  • Attend LIVE Online or watch the recording of each monthly 2.5 hour class. 
  • Attend both 1.5 hour LIVE Online small group sessions each month. These sessions are not recorded. They provide an opportunity for meditation practice, for sharing experiences, and for personal attention to ask any questions about the practice that may arise.
  • Participate in a day-long retreat on April 25, 2021, choosing at least two among three 3-hour segments of LIVE online guided meditation.
  • Maintain a daily 3 Doors meditation practice and keep a [private] practice journal.
  • Document and work with three challenges, one in each of these three areas of your life: your relationship to yourself, your relationships with family and close friends, and your relationship to your professional life and community.
  • Read suggested sections of the four source books: Awakening the Luminous Mind, Awakening the Sacred Body, Tibetan Sound Healing, and Spontaneous Creativity.

Teacher Bios

Gabriel Rocco
Gabriel RoccoSenior Teacher
Gabriel Rocco has studied and practiced under the guidance of Tenzin Wangyal for twenty years. Gabriel earned his master’s degree in Contemplative Psychotherapy from Naropa University. His personal meditation practice benefits from intimate study with leading meditation masters, spiritual teachers, and healing professionals from a diversity of healing traditions. Gabriel is a senior instructor for the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Program for Mindfulness where he teaches Mindfulness-based Stress Management programs, advanced classes in meditation, and leads group retreats. Gabriel is a senior teacher in the 3 Doors Academy. He also served as the Mind Body Specialist at The Wellness Community of Philadelphia for twenty years, where he facilitated programs to support cancer patients and caregivers through the integration of mind, body, and spirit.
Marcy Vaughn
Marcy VaughnSenior Teacher
Marcy Vaughn has been a practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism for more than forty years and is a senior student of Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche. She has edited Rinpoche’s books Tibetan Sound Healing, Awakening the Sacred Body, Awakening the Luminous Mind, and Spontaneous Creativity. She is a senior teacher in The 3 Doors Academy and a beloved teacher throughout the US, Mexico, and Europe for Ligmincha International. Marcy earned her master’s degree in Contemplative Psychotherapy from Naropa University, where she also taught and performed in a dance ensemble. She has a private therapy practice in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania and is co-founder of Contemplative Arts Studio; her husband Gabriel Rocco is the other co-founder.