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From January 27, 2020 until April 24, 2020

At Namgyal Monastery Institute of Buddhist Studies,

Ithaca, NY 14850


Namgyal Monastery Institute of Buddhist Studies. / Email: office@namgyal.or OR Call - 607-279-8805


January 27th– April 24, 2020

One Week Break for Losar: February 24-March 1



Full-Time Tuition: Full-time tuition for Monday through Thursday classes is $950, which includes access to all courses offered. Full-time students are also granted access to two weekend intensives throughout the semester (excludes special programming). Payment schedules can be arranged with the Administrator prior to the beginning of each session.


Senior Citizen Discount: A discount of 15% will be granted to seniors (age 65 or older), applicable to full-time tuition or tuition for individual classes.


Live-Stream Recordings: Classes will be live-streamed and Livestream video recordings can be viewed at any time that is convenient and the links to the recordings remain available for 2-3 months. The cost for live-stream access is $200. To register for live-stream recording email deana_bodnar@msn.com and send payment to Namgyal Monastery by check or by online payment by visiting our website www.namgyal.org for information email: office@namgyal.org OR Call – 607-279-8805.


Buddhist Science and Philosophy: The Physical World (Part One)

Instructor: Geshe Lobsang Dhondrup translation by Palden Oshoe

Mondays 6:30-7:45 Jan 27, Feb 3, 10, 17, March 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, April 6, 13, 20

Tuition: $265.00 for semester (payable in full or in two $132.50 installments)


For over 35years, His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama has engaged in annual Mind-Life Conferences with Western scientist from various disciplines to explore the commonalities and differences in Buddhist and Western views on the nature of reality and the mind. One outcome of these discussions is that HHDL convened a group of renown Buddhist scholars (Geshes) to compile all the treatises from classical Indian Buddhists texts that provided discourses on Buddhist science and philosophy. The first volume in this series provides a compilation and synthesis of teachings on the Indian Buddhist view of nature of the physical world. In this class, Geshe-la will take students through the first two parts of this volume which includes: 1) an overview of the methodology used in Buddhist science to classify and analyze phenomena and 2) an explanation and discussion of the different types of knowable objects identified within Buddhist Science and how these define the nature of reality. This class provides an unique opportunity for students to gain understanding and have discussion about foundational concepts the classical Indian Buddhist views of the world. Geshe Dhondrup is not only a highly trained Buddhist scholar, but also has attended several Mind-Life conferences with HHDL and so has developed understanding of views Western students bring to these topics as well.


Text: Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics Vol. 1: The Physical World

Conceived and Introduced by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Edited by Thupten Jinpa



Cultivating Special Insight

Lam Rim (Stages of the Path to Enlightenment) Part 4

Instructor: Geshe Lobsang Dhondrup translation by Palden Oshoe

Tuesdays 6:30-7:45 Jan 28, Feb 4, 11, 18 March 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 April 7, 14, 21

Tuition: $265.00 for semester (payable in full or in two $132.50 installments)


In Tibetan Buddhism, the views selflessness and emptiness are central to the philosophical underpinnings of various teachings and practices. Hence, developing a correct understanding of emptiness is considered critical to both overcoming ignorance and transforming the mind. The goal is for practitioners to develop a non-conceptual wisdom that directly cognizes emptiness. However, to get there, one must first cultivate a conceptual understanding of emptiness in relation to both conventional and ultimate truths. Part Four of the Lam Rim covers the final stage of the path, in which one develops deeper insight into the conventional and ultimate views of reality. In particular, one develops an understanding of the differences in the Madhyamaka Svantrika and Prasangika views, the lack of intrinsic nature of persons and phenomena and uniting calm abiding and special insight.. This class is an excellent complement to the philosophical tenets class on Madhyamaka, Prasangika.


Text: Lama Tsongkhapa’s the Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment Vol. 3



The Foundation of All Good Qualities by Lama Tsongkapa

Instructor: Geshe Lobsang Dhondrup translation by Palden Oshoe

Wednesdays 6:30-7:45 Jan 29, Feb 5, 12, 19, March 4, 11, 18, 25, April 1, 8, 15, 22

Tuition: $265.00 for semester (payable in full or in two $132.50 installments)


This short text by Lama Tsongkapa contains the entire stages of the path to enlightenment. These include: the importance of relying on a spiritual teacher, the preciousness of a human birth, impermanence, renunciation, the altruistic intention of bodhichitta and the wisdom realizing emptiness.   Geshe-la will provide extensive explanation of these different topics and provide instruction in how to develop daily practices that help us to cultivate these qualities in our lives. This is an excellent course for persons new to Tibetan Buddhism as it will give an overview of all the foundational practices.


Text: The Foundation of All Good Qualities by Lama Tsongkapa (text available online)



Neurobiology of Meditation and Mind-Training

Instructor: Deana Bodnar, LMSW PhD

Thursdays 6:30-7:45 Jan 30, Feb 6,13,20, March 5,12,19, 26April 2, 9, 16, 23

Tuition: $265.00 for semester (payable in full or in two $132.50 installments)


This course will provide students with a practical understanding of how various meditation and mind training practices in Tibetan Buddhism can change neural circuits in the brain and lead to associated changes in emotions and behaviors in one’s daily life. We will first review the basic of neurobiology such as neuron function and coding, communication between neurons and the processes that underlie changes in neural connections. Then we will examine the neural circuits involved in different types of meditation such as mindfulness, calm-abiding and compassion meditations and how these change with continued practice. This will include discussing the scientific studies demonstrating these changes. We will then examine the neural circuits underlying various negative emotions and habitual patterns and how these can be altered through meditation and mind-raining practices. All class sessions will include time to directly practice and experience the different types of meditation and mind-training practices discussed during each class. No previous knowledge of neurobiology, meditation or Buddhism is required.


Recommended texts (not required):

The Mindful Brain: Reflection and Attunement in the Development of Well-Being (2007)

by Daniel Seigel


The Monastery and the Microscope: Conversations with the Dalai Lama on Mind, Mindfulness, and the Nature of Reality (2017), Edited by Wendy Hasenkamp and Janna Whyte

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