There will certainly be a college

Perhaps the greatest gift bequeathed to us by Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche is a curriculum that draws on the Buddha’s vast and profound educational heritage through a time-tested approach that enables students of Dharma to progress on the path of inner transformation.

(Photo Courtesy Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive) Lama Zopa Rinpoche and Lama Yeshe in a tent at Syangboche, Solu Khumbu, 1972

In 2022, we launched a new cycle of Discovering Buddhism, enrolling over 100 students. The level of engagement for this course, which is running concurrently with Basic Programme and Exploring Buddhism, is a course co-created by Geshe Namdak for Western students. Jamyang is one of the first centres to offer the course in Europe. These courses reaffirm our commitment to making Jamyang London Buddhist Centre a beacon of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition’s (FPMT) educational model.

We are well on our way to establishing the Dharma college that Lama Yeshe envisioned at the centre’s founding, his words in the photo below.

Recognising that the inner transformation that students seek depends on a variety of elements that supplement formal study, we are creating more opportunities for discussion, meditation, and preliminary practices. This holistic education structure, which we will continue to build on, is intended to provide students with everything they need to internalise the teachings.

Another benefit of our educational approach, no less meaningful, is its capacity to build community. Through our courses, friendships and support networks are formed, and as the world deals with the challenges of economic and political uncertainty and climate change, these relationships will be vital.

To achieve our goal of bringing to fruition Lama Yeshe’s vision of a Buddhist college at Jamyang London Buddhist Centre, we need to grow our teaching faculty to support the tireless efforts of our Resident Teacher, Geshe Tenzin Namdak.

We are drawing on the talents of various community members to develop a teacher training programme that will nurture students who show potential and interest in becoming facilitators at Jamyang London Buddhist Centre, such as our Inclusivity Ambassadors.

Our aim is to support these students so that their names can eventually be added to the FPMT Registered Teacher’s list, and they can confidently deliver classes and lead meditations for the next courses.

Throughout its history, Jamyang’s education programme has been incredibly fortunate to be sustained by a large team of facilitators, Teaching Assistants and meditation leaders. The plan is to expand this team even further, to accommodate future generations of Dharma students.

May the cultivation of wisdom and compassion through Dharma education flourish at Jamyang for years to come.