FPMT » Education: The Heart of FPMT http://fpmt.org Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition Fri, 28 Aug 2015 13:41:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Resources for Learning FPMT Preferred Tunes and Pronunciationshttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/resources-for-learning-fpmt-preferred-tunes-and-pronunciations/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/resources-for-learning-fpmt-preferred-tunes-and-pronunciations/#comments Wed, 19 Aug 2015 18:20:03 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=47178 read full article]]>

 

EBPTunes NEWCD label

Education Services now has a variety of resources for those wishing to learn the FPMT preferred tunes and pronunciations for standard prayers, practices and mantras. 

Students can take advantage of these downloads and other available resources: 


Through comprehensive study programspractice materialstraining seminars, and scholarships, FPMT Education nourishes the development of compassion, wisdom, kindness, and true happiness in individuals of all ages.

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FPMT Online Learning Center Has Reached 20,000 Usershttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/fpmt-online-learning-center-has-reached-20000-users/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/fpmt-online-learning-center-has-reached-20000-users/#comments Wed, 05 Aug 2015 17:29:18 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=46421 read full article]]>

LOP Videos

The FPMT Online Learning Center (OLC) is providing access to FPMT Education programs for an incredible amount of people. The OLC recently passed 20,000 total registered users and gets over 4,000 visitors per month! Discovering Buddhism Module 2: How to Meditate alone has 4,400 students enrolled.  

The OLC hosts most of the learning programs developed by FPMT Education Services. OLC’s programs encompass the study of Buddhist fundamentals through more advanced philosophical topics in a very interactive learning format.

EDU logo whitePrograms of Discovering Buddhism, Living in the Path, Basic Program and other courses and commentaries are available in their complete forms as online courses in English, with a number of courses in French and Spanish.  

The OLC has been especially valuable for those who are not close to an FPMT center or for those who are connected to a center but can’t make their schedule fit with their center’s programs. It also gives the opportunity to take courses that local FPMT centers don’t regularly offer.

Jason, an OLC student in the United States comments, “I feel so fortunate to have found FPMT – this forum allows me to feel part of a spiritual community in a way I have not experienced before. It is tremendously comforting and reassuring to read the correspondence, and be able to dialogue with kind and wise people. For nearly a year I have been concerned with how to make my quest for personal growth a less solitary one. This works well for me.” 

Online learning can be a refuge for students who feel that just reading on their own isn’t enough for them and want the extra structure, motivation and support that comes with being in a class. It’s also attractive for those having a hard time knowing where to start within Buddhism’s vast amount of teachings. 

OLC sample for blog July 2015The Online Learning Center allows users the freedom to take courses at their own pace and on their own schedule while giving the added structure of homework and reading assignments, study guides, online discussion forums, activities and exams to help learning go much deeper.

“When I first started trying to get a sense of Buddhism I read widely and in a way that, looking back, was really very scattered. After a time, and even studying with Tibetan teachers in India, I longed for a systematic approach that would begin at the beginning and fill in the foundational details that I knew I was missing. Discovering Buddhism is where I found them,” shares Tim, an OLC user in Japan.

There is a selection of free courses offered through the Friends of FPMT program and complete access to all courses is given to Dharma Supporters and Patron Friends of FPMT. The Friends program serves as a key source of funding for the Foundation while providing supporters with lots of education materials and connection to the global FPMT family. You can learn more about the Friends of FPMT program here.

Individual courses in the OLC can also be purchased through the Foundation Store. IMI Sangha are provided free access to all courses and scholarships are available to students who need financial assistance.  

Through comprehensive study programspractice materialstraining seminars, and scholarships, FPMT Education nourishes the development of compassion, wisdom, kindness, and true happiness in individuals of all ages.

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Blessing Medicine Practice Now Available from FPMT Education Serviceshttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/blessing-medicine-practice-now-available-from-fpmt-education-services/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/blessing-medicine-practice-now-available-from-fpmt-education-services/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 15:15:22 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=46468 read full article]]>
Medicine Buddhas thangka by Bob Cayton.

Photo of Medicine Buddhas thangka by Bob Cayton.

 

Lama Zopa Rinpoche teaches that every activity can be transformed into an opportunity to benefit ourselves and others. FPMT Education Services is pleased to release, as a free PDF, Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s translation of Pänchen Losang Chögyen’s Blessing Medicine practice. This practice can be done when taking medicine. 

Through comprehensive study programspractice materialstraining seminars, and scholarships, FPMT Education nourishes the development of compassion, wisdom, kindness, and true happiness in individuals of all ages

 

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New Audio Books of Lama Zopa Rinpoche from the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archivehttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/new-audio-books-of-lama-zopa-rinpoche-from-the-lama-yeshe-wisdom-archive/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/new-audio-books-of-lama-zopa-rinpoche-from-the-lama-yeshe-wisdom-archive/#comments Thu, 09 Jul 2015 15:19:56 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=45486 read full article]]>
LZR How Things Exist

The Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive brings great news that Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s How Things Exist and How to Practice Dharma are now available as audio books through Audible.com. Please also enjoy the audio versions of Lama Yeshe’s Becoming Your Own Therapist / Make Your Mind An Ocean and Illuminating the Path by His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

The Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive (LYWA) is the collected works of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. 

You can find more teachings and advice by, as well as news and updates about Lama Zopa Rinpoche


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Shantideva Meditation Center Offers New Video Serieshttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/shantideva-meditation-center-offers-new-video-series/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/shantideva-meditation-center-offers-new-video-series/#comments Wed, 01 Jul 2015 18:00:50 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=45275 read full article]]>
Geshe Ngwang Tenley teaching at Shantideva Meditation Center, New York. Photo courtesty of SMC's Facebook page.

Geshe Ngwang Tenley teaching at Shantideva Meditation Center, New York. Photo courtesy of SMC’s Facebook page.

Shantideva Meditation Center in New York has recently started to offer short online videos to bring the wisdom of its visiting teachers to people outside of its geographic area.  Unlike recorded teachings, which could be a few hours long and more likely appeal to seasoned students, these concise clips are designed to engage newcomers who are curious about the fundamentals of Buddhism and how it might benefit their lives.

Following the FPMT’s practical and integrative approach to education, subjects include: How Can We Stay Patient When Dealing With Difficult People? by Geshe Ngawang Tenley and How Does One Begin a Meditation Practice? by Ven. Amy Miller.

Special attention has also been made to create aesthetically pleasing videos to mirror the philosophical beauty of the teachings, invoking the help of students who wish to channel their professional skills as an offering to the Dharma.  

Shantideva Meditation Center explains this new series, “In a rapidly developing world where attention spans are short and there is saturation of media fueled by consumerism, the hope is to offer to people all over the world concise teachings packed with wisdom and compassion, so that they may be inspired to discover their inner potential for happiness and cultivate all the positive qualities of an awakened being.”

 

You can watch more videos, learn about Shantideva Meditation Center or explore other opportunities for Dharma teachings and study from FPMT Education Services

 

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Tibetan Translation: Comments from a Master, Geshe Thupten Jinpahttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/tibetan-translation-comments-from-a-master-geshe-thupten-jinpa/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/tibetan-translation-comments-from-a-master-geshe-thupten-jinpa/#comments Fri, 12 Jun 2015 16:30:48 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=44750 read full article]]>

In 2011 FPMT Translation Services organized “Taking Up the Challenge of Translating Buddhism,” a translation and editorial conference that focused on discussing the future of translation within the FPMT. Since this conference, FPMT Translation Services has been working towards creating a coherent Tibetan to English translation policy for the organization in order to address a number of critical issues ranging from terminology and consistency to translation style.

Geshe Thupten Jinpa with Maitripa College students , staff and President Yangsi Rinpoche. May, 2015. Photo by Marc Sakamoto.

Geshe Thupten Jinpa with Maitripa College students , staff and President Yangsi Rinpoche. May, 2015. Photo by Marc Sakamoto.

Geshe Thupten Jinpa, PhD, principal translator of His Holiness the Dalai Lama since 1985, visited Maitripa College in Portland, Oregon, USA, May 10-12, 2015. While there, he spoke to Maitripa’s translation students about issues in translating Tibetan. His answers to students’ questions, which range in topic from importance of interpretative-communicative translation, the poetry of translation, as well as suggestions for future focus which are not only relevant to this current work, but also to translation in the more distant future, have been transcribed and edited by Maitripa student and Mandala contributor Donna Lynn Brown. 

What are the priorities and opportunities right now for translation?

Twenty years ago there were very few translators, but now there are a lot.  Are there enough? I don’t think so. There are still a huge number of texts needing to be translated. 

I would like to see a lot more instructional materials out there, including, especially, those of Gelug masters. At the moment, there are many Lam Rim texts, but a lot of Gelug practice texts haven’t been translated. Most of the “instructions on the view” (lta khri) genre still needs to be translated. An important one is Maitriyogi’s Instructions of Three Essential Points; instructions from this and associated texts are, at the moment, not in widespread use in Gelug circles. But if you look at the collected works of Gelug masters of the past, almost every major Gelug master wrote a guide on this particular practice. And it’s all instructions based on Avalokiteshvara, highest yoga tantra, as revealed by the mystical experience of Maitriyogi. These are very moving and powerful practices for the three essential times, which are waking life, bardo, and the point of death. Also, most of the Gelug Mahamudra textual tradition is still to be translated. My own translation focus to date has been more on Tibetan traditions as a whole, rather than Gelug works in particular. But there are specific Gelug instructional texts that need to be done. And some of these are very accessible, very inspiring, and one would be immediately able to practice them.

Geshe Thupten Jinpa speaking at Maitripa College, Portland, OR, May 2015. Photo by Marc Sakamoto.

Geshe Thupten Jinpa speaking at Maitripa College, Portland, OR, May 2015. Photo by Marc Sakamoto.

What is necessary to produce a high quality translation?

I actually read the final product aloud, especially if it is a verse text. How does it sound? Because English is a very beautiful language. It is very versatile and has tremendous expressive capacity.  And not to be able to use the full resource that is available in English is a real tragedy. In the end you want to give the reader an experience that is joyful. Most of the Tibetan texts are written by good scholars who express themselves well. Especially if you are producing practice material like sadhanas, you really need to bring out that musical quality, because these are something people use on a daily basis. You want them to sub-consciously associate the text with joy. For practice material, you should bring in spontaneity, music and rhythm. That really makes a difference.

Evoking not just the same understanding but also the same emotion as the original might mean being inconsistent with translation equivalents.

That’s OK. Literalness defeats the purpose. I believe in the ability to arrive at a product where you do full justice to the integrity of the original text, yet at the same time respect the reader. You cannot just produce texts saying that this is what I think the author is saying; I don’t care whether you understand it or not. That’s sometimes what happens. It’s very unkind to the reader.

You have to translate some words differently in different contexts. Generally, it makes no sense to equate one Tibetan word with one English word. English has so many more words. If you try to translate one to one, you don’t use the full resource of the English language. For some technical terms, yes, having just one translation is best. But many verbs require several translations, such as bsgom, which can be meditate, cultivate, familiarize, or even ‘form a habit.’ Even within a single text, a word may be used slightly differently. Tibetan is very contextual. English has a broader vocabulary, and meaning depends less on context. Words have shades of meaning, and a good writer chooses the right word in the right context. For example, ‘dzin is to hold, to apprehend, and to grasp, and bdag-‘dzin I translate as self-grasping, because that catches the emotional sense. 

How should we work with Tibetan Lamas and Geshes when translating?

I don’t think there is much role for them in a translation, beyond helping with comprehension. That is what their role is really about. People who ground their choices of particular words in instructions from their Lamas face challenges. How can you invoke a Rinpoche’s authority regarding your choice of a particular English word if he doesn’t speak English? 

What kind of texts should we work on while learning to translate?

In learning to translate, it’s good to work on sadhanas. They test your ability to do a lyrical translation.  They are like movie scripts. Take a look at the Penguin edition of the Tibetan Book of the Dead, for which I was an editor: we tried to get that feel. And then try your hand at verse. Verse writing tests you. When I was doing The Book of Kadam, a large chunk of it in verse, I read Dante to inspire me.  It has those long lines and evocative language. I can only read it in translation, but if the translation of Dante speaks to me, then the translation of a poetic work into English should be able to speak to the reader (laughs). I read Dante, Rilke, and Rabindranath Tagore in translation, to get a feel for poetry.

When we practice, we may use translations that are imperfect, or in which the English words have the wrong connotations. How do we practice correctly given imperfect translations?

On the whole there is enough accurate material to eventually point out to you what is correct, unless you are going toward vajrayana practices; then it’s still quite complicated. Most general Buddhist ideas – there’s enough material out there.

Do you manage to find time for practice, along with your translation and other work?

I feel the yearning. But it’s one thing to have the yearning and another to act on it. There are practicalities to consider. At this stage of my life, I have responsibilities for my children, my wife. I’m also in a unique position because of my role and the contributions I can make, so it’s a struggle. But I still hope that at some point in my life I’ll be able to devote more time. The yearning is there. 

Geshe Thubten Jinpa is the translator and author of numerous books, including his recently published A Fearless Heart: How the Courage to Be Compassionate Can Transform Our Lives. Geshe-la is also an adjunct professor at McGill University, Montréal, Canada, a core member of the Mind and Life Institute, and the founder and president of the Institute of Tibetan Classics. 

Through comprehensive study programs, practice materials, training seminars, and scholarships, FPMT Education nourishes the development of compassion, wisdom, kindness, and true happiness in individuals of all ages.

 

 

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Creating Compassionate Cultures Celebrates a Major Milestone!http://fpmt.org/edu-news/creating-compassionate-cultures-celebrates-a-major-milestone/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/creating-compassionate-cultures-celebrates-a-major-milestone/#comments Wed, 27 May 2015 16:29:26 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=44237 read full article]]>
​Annabelle Gaillard, OICCC participant, leading a lesson in the Monarch class at our pilot program, Tara Redwood School in Soquel, California, US. Photo courrtesy of CCC.

​Annabelle Gaillard, OICCC participant, leading a lesson in the Monarch class at our pilot program, Tara Redwood School in Soquel, California, US. Photo courrtesy of CCC.

Creating Compassionate Cultures (CCC) recently celebrated the completion of its inaugural Online Institute for Creating Compassionate Cultures (OICCC) certificate program,” reported CCC team member Mer Stafford in May 2015. “Thirty-six students from 10 countries participated in the course.”

Developed by CCC founder Pam Cayton with the help of colleague Amanda Bauscher, OICCC was designed to support educators, parents and guides in a deep study of the “Seven Steps to Knowledge, Strength, and Compassion,” a curriculum inspired by Lama Yeshe’s vision of a secular education based on universal wisdom and developed over the course of 20 years in the classrooms of Tara Redwood School in California. The curriculum itself starts with “Mindful Intention” and proceeds in a systematic way, each step building on the preceding one.

“The training was very helpful to transform my mind,” said student Annabelle Gaillard. “It created a lot of tolerance, much more tolerance in me, much more wisdom and much more compassion. And I think it helped me a lot with my family also, with my child, with my parents, with my environment. So that’s why I think that it could be very helpful for everyone, because I see just how it transformed my life within one year.”

“The OICCC certificate program offers 12 interrelated modules that lead participants through the Seven Steps pedagogy, providing the opportunity for deep personal and professional growth, as well as practical application of the Seven Steps methodologies,” Mer explained. “Participants in the program spend one year studying concepts via dynamic audio and video lessons provided on the OICCC portal. This is followed by a two-week internship at our pilot project, Tara Redwood School. Finally, a portfolio project is completed that requires research, serious reflection, and application of course materials.”

Several students from the inaugural class of OICCC have traveled to Soquel, California, to take part in the internship as part of the OICCC certification program. “The guidance and skillful presence of Pam (and all the staff) are so precious. Never judgmental, always teaching by being and working together as family,” shared Nicolas Brun from Toulouse, France. 

Mary Webster, from the Netherlands, is already implementing her studies in the classrooms at the International School where she has been teaching for the past 17 years. “The main way that my teaching has been transformed by the study is that it comes from a different starting place,” Mary said. “So the curriculum is the same, the children are the same, but the starting point is the Seven Steps. That very subtly shifts the dynamics in the class and shifts everyone’s perspective in whatever we are studying. That has created a really positive learning situation in the class, and a really positive social situation, which is what supports the learning

Mary Webster leads a drama exercise in the Evergreen class at our pilot program, Tara Redwood School in Soquel, California, US. Photo courtesy of CCC.

Mary Webster leads a drama exercise in the Evergreen class at our pilot program, Tara Redwood School in Soquel, California, US. Photo courtesy of CCC.

The next OICCC Certificate Program begins August 3, 2015. For more information, or to register, please visit our website: http://www.oiccctraining.org. An early bird registration special discount runs May 19-June 16.

Creating Compassionate Cultures is a Foundation for Developing Compassion and Wisdom (FDCW) recognized learning program.

Through comprehensive study programs, practice materials, training seminars, and scholarships, FPMT Education nourishes the development of compassion, wisdom, kindness, and true happiness in individuals of all ages.

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The Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive Now Offering Audio Bookshttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/the-lama-yeshe-wisdom-archive-now-offering-audio-books/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/the-lama-yeshe-wisdom-archive-now-offering-audio-books/#comments Wed, 20 May 2015 21:30:20 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=44107 read full article]]>
BYMY-audible copy
The Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive has begun offering audio books through Audible.com! Audio books are a powerful way to make the Dharma more accessible to anyone who can understand spoken English. Narrator Brian Nishii offers an accessible presentation of Illuminating the Path to Enlightenment by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Becoming Your Own Therapist / Make Your Mind An Ocean by Lama Yeshe. You can listen to five minute audio samples of both and even consider enrolling in a free trial membership. Coming up next: Audio versions of Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s How Things Exist and How to Practice Dharma: Teachings on the Eight Worldly Dharmas.  
The Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive (LYWA) is the collected works of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. You can learn more about the activities of the archive
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A New Book by Lama Zopa Rinpoche: ‘How to Help Your Loved Ones Enjoy Death and Go Happily to Their Next Rebirth’http://fpmt.org/edu-news/a-new-book-by-lama-zopa-rinpoche-how-to-help-your-loved-ones-enjoy-death-and-go-happily-to-their-next-rebirth/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/a-new-book-by-lama-zopa-rinpoche-how-to-help-your-loved-ones-enjoy-death-and-go-happily-to-their-next-rebirth/#comments Wed, 13 May 2015 15:03:42 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=43808 read full article]]>

cover2In this handbook – now available as a free download – Lama Zopa Rinpoche gives a huge amount of advice about how to help our loved ones before, during, and after death. 

This 400+ page book, compiled and edited by Ven. Robina Courtin, takes much of the material in FPMT’s Heart Practices for Death and Dying and Heart Advice for Death and Dying (both published in 2008), but radically restructures and reorganizes it into an easy-to-use manual. 

As Ven. Robina explains in the introduction:

“For a Buddhist, the ideal way to die is to die gradually, contrary to an often-stated view that it’s best to die in our sleep so that we don’t know about it. And the reason is clear: given that most of us live in denial of this natural event, our loved ones need time to get ready for death, at peace and unafraid, so that they can, indeed, go happily to their next rebirth, either a precious human rebirth in which they can continue to practice their spiritual path or rebirth in a pure land, such as Buddha Amitabha’s, in which they can easily become a buddha and thus be qualified to perfectly help others.

“As Rinpoche says in the Prologue: ‘When suddenly one day one of your loved ones dies and you don’t know what to do to help, you’ll feel so confused, so lost. Knowing how to help others at the time of death is such important education to have.'”

Wisdom Publications will be publishing this material as a book entitled Preparing for Death: How to Meet Life’s Final Challenge without Fear in 2016.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche has given extensive advice on preparing for death and caring for others at the time of death. You can access all of this advice and practices on fpmt.org/death

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Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s Teachings from Bodhgayahttp://fpmt.org/edu-news/lama-zopa-rinpoches-teachings-from-bodhgaya/ http://fpmt.org/edu-news/lama-zopa-rinpoches-teachings-from-bodhgaya/#comments Wed, 06 May 2015 19:22:31 +0000 http://fpmt.org/?p=43604 read full article]]>
Lama Zopa Rinpoche teaching at Root Institute, March 2015. Photo by Andy Melnic.

Lama Zopa Rinpoche teaching at Root Institute, March 2015. Photo by Andy Melnic.

During February and March of this year, Lama Zopa Rinpoche taught in Bodhgaya at Root Institute. FPMT International Office is happy to make these teachings available to the public as videos and MP3 downloads via Rinpoche Available NOW

Topics covered by Rinpoche in these talks include:

  • the importance of practicing patience
  • definitions of Dharma
  • precious human rebirth
  • emptiness

You are welcome to explore all that Rinpoche Available NOW has to offer. You will find many archived teachings by Lama Zopa Rinpoche freely available to you. 

 Through comprehensive study programs, practice materials, training seminars, and scholarships, FPMT Education nourishes the development of compassion, wisdom, kindness, and true happiness in individuals of all ages.

 

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