Advanced Studies in Buddhist Philosophy
English Language Course -

McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala, India

Dalai Lama, McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala

2008 — 2d Year of PERFECTION OF WISDOM Course - April thru July

First Class: 1 APRIL 2008, Tuesday

Weekly Schedule: TUESDAY, THURSDAY & SATURDAY: 4:00 – 5:30 pm

Ven. Kelsang Wangmo — teacher

Subject of Second Year:
Differentiating the Interpretable & Definitive Meaning (of Buddha's teachings) based on Lama Tsong Khapa's Treatise: ESSENCE OF ELOQUENCE.

English Published Text:

IBD Office Phone: 1892-221215.
IBD Registration contacts: Gen Gelek or Gen Namzay (cell 94180-45842)
Fee: 200 Rupees per month
For more information, email: [email protected]


SCOPE — The Perfection of Wisdom course unlocks the structure of the Mahayana Path, the implicit meaning of the Perfection of Wisdom {Prajnaparamita} Sutras, by examining the Ornament for Clear Realizations {Abhisamayalamkara}, Maitreya's commentary on those sutras. Understanding the Ornament necessitates the study of several other treatises by ancient Indian and Tibetan commentators. Many of these treatises have not been translated from the Tibetan language into English. This couse is taught in all Tibetan monastic colleges and is part of the core curriculum of the Tibetan Geluk Geshe studies taught at IBD and was the subject matter of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's January 2008 teaching for the inauguration of Drepung Loseling Monastery's new prayer hall.

TEACHER — We are extremely fortunate to have a highly qualified, English-language teacher — Ven. Kelsang Wangmo! [Most teachers speak Tibetan and require a qualified English translator to present the Prajnaparamita course subjects].

DURATION — Several years are required to cover the subjects included in this course. For IBD's Geshe-degree prorgam, this course is presented over Six Years. Successful completion of IBD's Tibetan language course (including all of the exams and pre-requisite courses) is roughly equivalent to completion of a Bachelor of Arts in Buddhist Philosophy.

This English language course will be presented over six years — 2007-2012. Classes usually run for four or five months each year and begin after His Holiness the Dalai Lama completes annual Tibetan New Year (Lo-sar) teachings.

The English Language courses are not offered in a 'degree' program; nor are students required to apply for admission, nor are exams administered, nor does IBD provide housing for students.

STUDENTS — We are extremely fortunate to have a core community of dharma students residing in McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala! These students have attended the pre-requisite courses (the Collected Topics, Mind & Mental Factors, Tenets) and are committed to completing the Perfection of Wisdom Studies Course.

Additionally, many dharma students travel to Dharamsala for one-month or longer visits — they are welcome to attend the course when they are here. In fact, any dharma student who visits McLeod Ganj, is welcome to visit the class or attend while they are in town. [The 200 Rupee/month tuition donation supports scholarship for IBD's Tibetan monastic students].

Due to the difficulties of assembling qualified teachers and students for six years, this essential course of Mahayana Buddhist Philosophy and Practice has rarely been available to English speakers.

2008 Curriculum — The Second Year of the Perfection of Wisdom Studies course will follow the syllabus of the Geluk Monastic Universities. The second year studies the important questions raised when considering how to distinguish which of Buddha's teachings are 'definitive' and which require 'interpretation'. The tool for focusing that examination is an in-depth investigation of the tenets of the Mind Only (Cittamatrin) School of Buddhism as presented in Lama Tsong Khapa's examination of Cittamatrin philosophy in the Essence of Eloquence.

2008 Text — Our textbook will be EMPTINESS IN THE MIND ONLY SCHOOL OF BUDDHISM, Jeffrey Hopkins' annotated English translation of the Cittamatrin portion of Lama Tsong Khapa's Essence of Eloquence.

IBD English Language Programs of Advanced Studies in Buddhist Philosophy - Residential & Non-Residential

Non-Residential / Non-Matriculating Classes in McLeod Ganj

Background. In 2000, "Tenzin Josh", an Englishman enrolled in IBD's Tibetan geshe studies program, began teaching the introductory philosophical classes in English at various venues in Dharamshala, with the intention of educating a core group of students who would be qualified to study the Abhisamayalamkara - Perfection of Wisdom curriculum. In 2004, IBD inaugurated its English Language program of Advanced Studies in Buddhist Philosophy at its McLeod Ganj campus. Tenzin Josh taught the subjects covered in the first year of Perfection of Wisdom Studies. Ven. Kelsang Wangmo and Don Eisenberg taught the Collected Topics. Tenzin Josh departed India after that. IBD's Advanced Studies in Buddhist Philosophy English Language program in McLeod Ganj has continued since then with Ven. Kelsang Wangmo teaching Mind & Mental Factors in 2005, Tenets in 2006, and the first year of Perfection of Wisdom Studies in 2007.

No admission process is required for this program, the completion of which does not lead to the award of any type of "degree". Ven. Kelsang Wangmo seeks to make the material comprehensible to those with an English-language background in Buddhist philosphy who have not had an opportunity to complete the traditional requisite courses. Material from the 2007 course, including mp3's and supporting documents, is in the process of being made available for download on this site. Perhaps in the future we will post similar material from the pre-requisite courses. Additionally, class materials and mp3's from the 2008 course will be posted on this site.

Residential/Full Time Program - NEW!

October 6, 2008 - February 6, 2009

Basic Buddhist Philosophy in English at CHTS, IBD's Sarah campus

Subject: Collected Topics. Teacher: Geshe Graham Woodhouse. Location: IBD's branch College for Higher Tibetan Studies [CHTS] campus located in the Kangra valley.

Application for Admission/Acceptance required!

P.O Sarah—176215, Dharamsala, Kangra Dist. Himachal Pradesh, INDIA
Phone: +91 1892 204333 / 203205
E-mail: [email protected]

2007 Perfection of Wisdom
DOWNLOAD MP3's and documents for 2007 Classes
  • Class 16 held on 08 May 2007>
  • Class 17 held on 10 May 2007
  • Class 18 held on 12 May 2007
  • Class 19 held on 10 May 2007
  • Links to most of the other 2007 Classes will be posted in early March 2008

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Temple image, McLeod Ganj