Grievance Procedure

Independent Grievance Council

In the event that satisfactory advice is not found within the Rigpa sangha, an Independent Council has been made available. At present two senior western Buddhist teachers, unaffiliated with the Rigpa sangha, represent this council. 

The purpose of the Independent Council is as follows:

  • To offer an open, approachable, and discreet listening forum to any sangha member with serious concerns about ethical conduct, their own or another’s, if/when that advice is not found through the Rigpa organization;
  • To offer advice in such situations;
  • To act as an appeals panel for complaints that have been dealt with within the Rigpa sangha;
  • To make recommendations to the Rigpa Boards, including the Vision Board, which the Board(s) commit to act upon.

The Independent Grievance Council can be contacted at [email protected] You can read more about the members of the Independent Grievance Council below.


Lopön Helen Berliner has been a student and practitioner of Buddhism and contemplative disciplines since 1970. During this time, she has had the good fortune to receive teachings and empowerments from masters of the four great lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. Since 1993, she has been a student of Mindrolling Jetsün Khandro Rinpoche. Grateful for the awakening of dharma in the western world, she has served in sangha administrative and teaching roles for over forty years and is currently on staff at Mindrolling Lotus Garden in Virginia. With degrees in fine arts and psychology, she has also served as a hospital chaplain and crisis counselor. Her master’s degree is in Buddhist Studies, with a focus on environmental psychology. She is author of the book Enlightened by Design, and editor of books by authors including Jetsun Khandro Rinpoche, Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, and Ane Pema Chödron.
With the mutual aspiration to consider fairly and fearlessly the ethical concerns on the path of practice, Lopön Helen is available to Rigpa sangha.
Lopön Jann Jackson began her study and practice of buddhadharma in 1975 and has been blessed to receive teachings and transmissions in the four main lineages of Tibetan Buddhism. Since 1994 she began receiving teachings from Mindrolling Jetsun Khandro Rinpoche, with whom she has been studying ever since. She is deeply committed to supporting the transmission of buddhadharma in the West and to supporting students in their practice and studies.
Lopön Jann received a master’s degree in counseling psychology. She has worked in the human service field for forty-five years, with a focus on helping families, communities, and public systems to interrupt patterns that cause harm and to create cultures of respect and care. In this spirit, she is available to members of the Rigpa sangha and its leadership, to listen with an open mind and heart and explore concerns within the context of Buddhist ethics.