Dr. Shakya Dorje

Participants at the annual Shedra for the past two years have receive in-depth information and education regarding the unique and profound method of Sowa Rigpa (Science of Healing) along with specific guidance on healthy lifestyle choices and the opportunity to receive individual consultations and healing compounds (Tibetan medicines) from the eminent Dr. Shakya Dorje la who trained under some of the most accomplished Tibetan physicians and has been educating and treating Western practitioners for many years.

Dr. Shakya Dorje at Lotus Garden
Dr. Shakya Dorje at Lotus Garden

Tibetan medicine, properly called Sowa Rigpa (Science of Healing), is the unique, indigenous form of natural medicine native to the Tibetan culture. It has developed over many centuries on the Tibetan plateau, is recorded in texts in the Tibetan language and is taught in schools devoted to its study and is practiced in clinics throughout upper Asia. The Tibetan medical system, based in Buddhist understanding, approaches the individual with a unique and detailed understanding of the integrity and wholeness of body and mind. Patients are diagnosed not only by interview but also by the distinct Tibetan method of pulse diagnosis. Dr. Shakya Dorje la is also a translator for many other eminent Tibetan physicians and speaks fluent English.


Shakya Dorje la is a fully qualified Emchi, or physician of Tibetan medicine. He was given his qualification as both a physician and pharmacist in the Tibetan tradition in 1989, and has based his practice in Toronto, Canada, since 1991.

Dr. Shakya Dorje la studied the Tibetan medical system as an apprentice under the eminent Tibetan physician, Ven. Dr. Trogawa Rinpoche, from 1983-1990. This apprenticeship consisted of a complete study of the classics; in-depth teaching on diagnosis and treatment; detailed instructions during consultations with thousands of patients; study and practice in compounding; and herb-gathering expeditions. During this time he was also sent to study with other prominent physicians, most particularly Lamen Tenzin Chodak and Nyerongsha Kunga Gyurme.

From 1968 on, he received teachings in Buddhist meditation and understanding from Chatral Sangye Dorje Rinpoche. From 1971, He also studied and practiced under other Buddhist teachers including Khenpo Palden Sherab (professor, Tibetan Institute of Higher studies, Varunasi, India); the Drukpa Kagyud master Apo Yeshe Rangdrol; the Karma Kagyud master Khenpo Thrangu Tulku; and Nyingma masters H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche and Thinley Norbu Rinpoche.

In 1983, Dr. Shakya Dorje la was the chief interpreter at the “First Conference of Tibetan Medicine,” in Venice and Arcidosso, Italy. In 1998, he was one of the Emchis participating in the “First International Congress on Tibetan Medicine”, in Washington, D.C., sponsored by the National Institute of Health. Since 1990 he maintains a clinic in Toronto, where he not only treats patients but also produces most of his own compounds according to traditional formulas. He regularly holds clinics in a number of other cities.