Buddhist Resources in the Five College region

Younge Khachab Rinpoche 

The Western Massachusetts sangha of Rime Shedrub Ling (Academy of Non-Sectarian Study and Practice) is pleased to announce the arrival of Younge Khachab Rinpoche, a nonsectarian teacher of Tibetan Buddhism. Email the sangha.

The Barre Center for Buddhist Studies
Barre, Massachusetts

"The Barre Center for Buddhist Studies is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to exploring Buddhist thought and practice as a living tradition, faithful to its origins, yet adaptable to the current world. [...] The study center offers a variety of courses, workshops, retreats and self-study programs to further research, study and practice. Our programming is rooted in the classical Buddhist tradition of the earliest teachings and practices, but calls for dialogue with other schools of Buddhism and with other academic fields. All courses support both silent meditation practice and conscious investigation of the teachings."

Insight Meditation Society
Barre, Massachusetts

"Primarily, we offer instruction and guidance in insight and loving kindness meditations—practices that help bring genuine happiness to our lives."

Vipassana Meditation Center
Shelburne, MA

The Vipassana Meditation Center (VMC) of Shelburne, MA, offers 10-day residential, silent meditation courses twice monthly to the public without charge on an unsolicited, voluntary, pay-it-forward, donation basis. VMC, in partnership with UMass Amherst, is reserving ten spaces for Pioneer Valley, Massachusetts Five College students, faculty and staff for its August 8th and December 26th 2018 courses. Typically, VMC course retreats are full with a waitlist for three months in advance. Vipassana means “to see things as they really are” and is a way of self-transformation through self-observation. It focuses on the deep interconnection between mind and body, which can be experienced directly by disciplined attention to the physical sensations that form the life of the body, and that continuously interconnect and condition the life of the mind. It is this observation-based, self-exploratory journey to the common root of mind and body that gradually dissolves mental impurity, resulting in a balanced mind full of love and compassion. It was rediscovered by Gotama Buddha more than 2,600 years ago and was taught by him as a universal remedy for universal ills, i.e., an art of living. The technique, taught in a non-sectarian manner, aims for the total eradication of mental impurities and the resultant highest happiness of full liberation. To apply for either of the courses, please visit http://www.dhamma.org/en-US/schedules/schdhara, select either the August 8th or December 26th course applications and identify yourself as a Five College student, faculty or staff member in the application. 

Tibetan language classes with Dara Juels 

"I have been studying Tibetan Buddhism for the past 15 years with private tutors and teachers including Ka-nying Shedrup Ling in Kathmandu, and I recently completed translator training at Rangung Yeshe Institute in California. Lama Changchup Dorje, my husband, is originally from Mugu, Nepal, and spent 10 years studying at Samye Memorial Gonpa in Kathmandu where he studied Buddhist philosophy and history before undertaking the traditional three-year retreat twice under the guidance of Khenpo Zangpo Rinpoche.
"I am offering classes in written and spoken Tibetan. The classical component will begin with learning to recognize and write the alphabet, spelling, phonetic decoding and reading simple texts. The spoken component will include writing and reciting simple sentences as well as conversing in Tibetan. 
Working from the Manual of Standard Tibetan textbook, we also will supplement with recordings and transcripts made by my Changchup in order to develop proper pronunciation. In addition, I can also act as an oral interpreter for my husband if further clarification of traditional Buddhist texts is desired."
Phone: 413 362-2158


Research Associateships at Mangalam Research Center for Buddhist Languages
Located in Berkeley, California

"Although it has only recently come into operation, MRC has quickly been recognized by the international aca­demic community as a serious, unique and valuable institution in the field of Buddhist studies. This is due in part to its status as part of a larger organization with well-established and highly successful programs for the promo­tion, study and preservation of Buddhist teachings and texts. It is also due to MRC’s commitment to working closely with the Western scholarly community and its clear recognition of the value of the work that Western academics have done over the past 150 years. Finally, it reflects MRC’s single-minded focus on the language of Dharma transmission and on developing the resources and knowledge that support this focus."


Study and Travel Abroad Opportunities

Cambodia Buddhist Immersion
Global Service Corps’ Buddhist Immersion Program offers volunteers a chance to be both the teacher and the student. Participants learn about the Khmer culture on social, spiritual and intellectual levels while giving something to their new community through teaching English at the wat and other service-learning projects.

South Asia Summer Language Institute
SASLI is dedicated to training students, faculty members and professionals in the languages of South Asia. 

University of Virginia Summer Language Institute
The Summer Language Institute of the University of Virginia offers Tibetan and Chinese.

Rangjung Yeshe Institute
Rangjung Yeshe Institute's mission is to be a center of higher learning, working to the highest standards, to provide both traditional and modern Buddhist education through teaching, translation, publication, research and practice.

The 2013 language programs offer a full immersion into Tibetan, Sanskrit and Nepali languages. The Buddhist Studies program provides a living exposure to Buddhist philosophy and a practical introduction to the richness of personal meditation training. All summer programs are fully accredited by Kathmandu University.

Woodenfish Project 
Woodenfish Project offers students a chance to experience life at Fuyan Temple at Heng Shan (Heng Mountain), Hunan Province, in southern China. All participants will be provided lodging on the monastic grounds. All courses and activities will be conducted in English—or in Chinese with English translation provided.

Tibetan Studies in India
As part of an ongoing academic exchange program with the Tibetan universities in exile in India, each year the Five Colleges send 15 students to spend January term studying Buddhist philosophy, Tibetan history and culture and Tibetan textual analysis in an intensive program taught by the faculty of the Central University of Tibetan Studies in Sarnath, India. The University is a research and teaching university established and jointly administered by the Tibetan Government in exile and the Ministry of Education of India.

Antioch Program in Buddhist Studies
A semester of study and meditation while living in a Buddhist monastery near the site of Buddha Shakyamuni’s enlightenment.

This program weaves together the diverse resources of Bodh Gaya into a fall semester of study emphasizing a comparative approach to both theory and practice. At the heart of the Buddhist Studies in India program is the desire to allow students to explore this subject from as many different points of view as possible. Western academic models are systematically used in the core courses, while Buddhist philosophies are tested in the Meditation Traditions course.

Himalayan Health Exchange
Himalayan Health Exchange's expeditions combine service, education and adventure to provide care to the underserved populations in select, remote areas of Indo-Tibetan Borderlands. Each trip combines service and adventure, with team members providing care while also experiencing the land, its natural environment, people and culture.

Interexchange Abroad
Experience the juxtaposition of old and new on one of these programs in Asia. Whether you want to see the opulent cities of Turkey, a country that spans both the European and Asian continents, or the incredible modern cities filled with ancient temples in China, their Teach English and Au Pair programs will help you be more than a tourist while abroad.

The Jamyang Foundation
Equal educational opportunities are a global ideal, but in many parts of the world women still lack basic literacy. To address these disparities, Jamyang Foundation supports innovative education projects for indigenous girls and women in two of the neediest and most remote parts of the world: the Indian Himalayas and the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh.

ISLE Program
ISLE is an atypical study abroad program. It is a demanding academic and intense cultural experience designed for highly motivated students with interests in various aspects of South Asian cultures and societies. Past students have found studying in Sri Lanka enriching in many ways: intellectually, emotionally, socially and physically. Students with an open mind who are ready to be challenged will find the ISLE program a deeply rewarding study abroad experience. (Offered in fall and spring semesters.)

Emory Tibetan Studies Program
Situated in the foothills of the Himalayas and home to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Dharamsala is the cultural and intellectual capital of the Tibetan exile community. The program integrates academic study, traditional Buddhist pedagogy and field research. Emory University and its partner the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics (IBD) offer two study abroad programs (spring semester and summer term) for students interested in both India and Tibet. Both programs are open to undergraduate students from any accredited university.

Summer Language Study in India
The American Institute of Indian Studies offers instruction in Bangla, Hindi, Malayalam, Marathi, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Tamil, Urdu, Telugu and Kannada as well as other languages if there is interest. The programs, located in India, have as their goal to provide a teaching and learning environment of professionalism, excellence and integrity and that operates in a joyful and hospitable manner.