Welcome to our Geshe & Advanced Topics course schedule
These include courses taught by our resident Tibetan teacher (translated into English) and more advanced courses taught by other teachers. It is recommended that you have a good grasp of the fundamentals of Buddhist philosophy as these courses can be quite challenging.
Realizing the Nature of the Mind: Mahamudra Retreat with Glen Svensson
In the words of Panchen Losang Chogyi Gyeltsen:
“May all migrators quickly gain victory over the two obscurations by means of this path, as there is no other second gateway to the state of peace.”
During this weekend retreat we will be investigating the Gelug tradition of mahamudra using the Panchen Lama’s text A Root Text for the Precious Gelug/Kagyu Tradition of Mahamudra.
The main practices covered will be how to develop single-pointed concentration through focussing on the mind (shamatha) and how to gain insight into the ultimate nature of the mind (vipashyana). This retreat will also highlight the preliminary practices which act as a foundation for mahamudra practice along with a brief discussion of the tantra or vajrayana level of practice.
This retreat is suitable for both beginners and those already established in the practice.
Friday 19th January 6.30pm – Sunday 21st January, 4.00pm. Held in the Gompa at Chenrezig Institute.
Facility Fee $108.
Originally from Australia, Glen Svensson has been a student and practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism since 1995 and graduated from the seven-year Masters Program in Advanced Buddhist Studies of Sutra and Tantra at the Lama Tsong Khapa Institute Pomaia, Italy) in 2004. Since 2005 he has taught and led meditation retreats in India, Europe, North America and Australia with a teaching style emphasizing clarity and stressing the integration of philosophical view, meditation and daily life conduct.
The Perfection of Meditation: Teachings from The Bodhisattva Way of Life with Geshe Thubten Sherab
In the whole of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition there is no single treatise more deeply revered or widely practiced than A Guide to the Bodhisattva Way of Life. Composed in the eighth century by the Indian Bodhisattva Santideva, it became an instant classic in the curricula of the Buddhist monastic universities of India, and its renown has grown ever since.
Santideva presents methods to harmonize one’s life with the Bodhisattva ideal and inspires the reader to cultivate the perfections of the Bodhisattva–generosity, ethics, patience, joyus effort, meditative concentration and wisdom.
Special Guest Geshe Sherab returns once again to inspire us with teachings and insight to motivate our meditation practice and help us find solutions to obstacles and challenges. This retreat is an incredible opportunity to learn direct from a master fluent in English.
Accommodation and meals available separately. Book for the entire retreat and receive a further discount of 10% discount to meals and accommodation.
Geshe Thubten Sherab was born in Menang, Nepal in 1967 and entered Kopan Monastery at the age of nine. After ten years of study, he went to Sera Je Monastery, eventually graduating as a Geshe. He continued on to Gyume Tantric College for one year and then to Kopan Monastery for one year to teach young monks.
From 2001 – 2003, Geshe Sherab served as a Board member at FPMT International Office, Taos, USA. He also taught at Thubten Norbu Ling Center, Santa Fe and Ksiti Garba Center, Taos.
After returning to Nepal for his own practices in 2003, he was later appointed as Head Master of Kopan Monastery (2006 – 2010) and served as acting Abbot in 2011. For the last few years, Geshe Sherab has been teaching at FPMT Centers around the world, including USA, Mexico, Guatamala, Asia, Europe and Australia. Currently Geshe-la is resident teacher at Thubten Norbu Ling Center, Santa Fe, USA.
Lama Tsongkhapa Guru Yoga Retreat
Within Tibetan Buddhism, there is an emphasis on creating a connection with a spiritual friend or teacher who will be able to support and nurture your personal development. The ultimate Life to Life Coach!
When choosing this teacher, students are advised by the Buddha to look carefully for specific qualities and not to make a commitment until they are completely sure. Lama Tsongkhapa Guru Yoga is a particularly powerful practice for creating the karma to meet a qualified spiritual teacher. It removes obstacles for creating this important connection and increases the blessings that come from this mentoring relationship. The retreat will conclude with a powerful offering ceremony.
Geshe Phuntsok Tsultrim will attend the retreat, assisting and inspiring us with a transmission of the recitation as well as sharing motivations, teachings, visualisations and other tips to help us understand and benefit from this practice. This retreat is ideal for students who have taken refuge with Geshela.
Retreat Leader will be experienced teacher, Ven Yonten. Known for her fresh, modern approach and warm, engaging teaching style Ven. Yonten regularly teaches at Mahamudra Centre in New Zealand and is a faculty member of Human Spirit: Psychoanalytic-Buddhist Training Program in Lod, Israel.
Facility fee $200
Accommodation and meals available separately for purchase. They are discounted by 10% for those attending the full retreat.
Advanced Study Programme at Chenrezig Institute
Offering intensive study for serious students and creating FPMT teachers!
Plans for 2017
All five modules in 2017 will be devoted to an extensive study of Lam Rim focusing on Lama Tsong Khapa’s Middle Length Lam Rim [lam rim ‘bring ba].
We’ll start on Losar (Tibetan New Year / 27th Feb), a most auspicious time for new beginnings. Monlam Chenmo is a two-week period of holy days after Losar, during which the Buddha performed various miracles culminating in the Day of Miracles on the 15th day.
Although of course it is best to study this most important subject in full, individual modules will be open to everyone. We’ll send out an outline of which specific subjects are likely to be taught during each module to help you choose.
Booking in advance for all courses is essential.
Download more information about the Lam Rim teachings in 2017 including all the dates of individual modules and the topics that will be included in each HERE
Registration forms for the entire subject and for individual modules will be available from January 2017. Return your form as quickly as possible to email@example.com and you will then be sent information about how to formalise your booking with any applicable discount [members 10% on course fees, substantial discounts for full-time students on accommodation charges etc] Sangha are offered these teachings free of charge but are also asked to send their registration to the coordinator as early as possible.
We are also committed to helping those in financial need to attend. Please contact the coordinator early to discuss any financial issues. Please contact the coordinator on firstname.lastname@example.org to be included on an email update list or for further information about the courses – or if you have any problem downloading these materials.
The Advanced Study Programme offered at Chenrezig Institute is a comprehensive, practice oriented course of Buddhist Study for both ordained and lay students wishing to extend their understanding of Buddhist thought and to receive a qualification which will enable them to become teachers within FPMT centres.
Currently we are following the FPMT Basic Programme, a five-year course of study designed by Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche. Three full rounds of the subjects have already been completed at the centre, as well as an extended two-year study of Madhyamika at the higher Masters Programme Level.
Teachings are with our resident teacher, Geshe Phuntsok Tsultrim, personally chosen for Chenrezig Institute by Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche, with his experienced interpreter and Basic Programme graduate, Ven Kartson (aka Yaki Platt), who is also assisting with tutorials.
Our presentation of the Basic Programme is special, and unique in this area, since we are able to offer intensive in house teachings in modules of between four to eight weeks, although some subjects like the Grounds and Paths of Secret Mantra and the Graduated Path to Enlightenment may be studied over 2 or even up to five of these modules. Teachings and tutorials are offered four days per week (for between 22 and 28 weeks of the year) and are complemented by group discussion and regular meditation.
Recommended attendance is full-time – attending all sessions and tests, but we do allow casual and part-time attendance where this is not possible. Please discuss this with the coordinator. It is also recommended to attend all subjects in the order they are offered for the best results, but students are permitted to attend individual modules. Homestudy packages of all subjects are available in case students wish to complete some subjects at home and others at the centre.
In line with Lama Zopa’s advice, all students are also recommended to make merit through taking part in regular service and to make their study time joyful and beneficial by applying the teachings to their meditations and behaviour. Students are able to stay on site and involve themselves in all the other spiritual practices of a busy dharma centre.
It should be clear to all that this programme is advanced study for students who have some basic understanding of Buddhist Principles and who wish to apply themselves seriously to the sometimes complex material taught. The teaching assistant and senior students will support newer students along the way as much as possible and materials from previous courses are made available both for preparation prior to attending the courses, and for clarification during the study time.
The nine core subjects of FPMT’s Basic Programme are:
- Mind and Cognition
- Buddhist Tenets
- A Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life
- The Graduated Path to Enlightenment
- The Heart Sutra
- Mahayana Mind Training (Wheel of Sharp Weapons)
- The Sublime Continuum
- The Fourth Chapter of the Ornament of Clear Realisation
- The Grounds and Paths of Secret Mantra – the Lower Tantras and
- Highest Yoga Tantra
Plus three supplementary subjects
- Seventy Topics
- Death Intermediate State and Rebirth (the Three Kayas)
- A Highest Yoga Tantra Commentary
In addition Chenrezig Institute complements these subjects with:
- Collected Topics
- Sutra Grounds and Paths
- Signs and Reasoning
Download an information pack which explains our programme more fully HERE.
If you simply can’t get to the centre regularly but would still like a course of study to follow, please contact email@example.com about the various options.
We can send details of intermediate level study ie Discovering Buddhism modules or more advanced study ie Basic Programme packages you can work through in your own time at your own leisure. We also have a lovely package made from one of the January Lam Rim Down Under retreats, suitable for any level.
Download information on Homestudy options HERE.