Discovering Buddhism at Home Teachers
|Thubten Yeshe, teacher of module 1, Mind and its Potential|
In 1974 Thubten Yeshe (T.Y.) met her teachers Lama Thubten Yeshe and Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche. For five years she studied in Nepal and India, during which time she was ordained as a Buddhist nun. She remained a nun for nine years. T.Y. has received teachings over the years from many lamas, including Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche, Geshe Ngawang Dargyey, Kyabje Song Rinpoche, Ribur Rinpoche, Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche and His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Since those early days, she has lived and worked in FPMT centers around the world. In 1985 she moved to Australia, where she teaches, lead retreats and engages in other work within the FPMT.
|Ven. Sangye Khadro, teacher of Module 2, How to Meditate|
Ven. Sangye Khadro was born in California in 1952 and took her first courses in Buddhism in Dharamsala, India, in 1973. She was ordained as a Buddhist nun in Kopan Monastery, Nepal, in 1974. She has studied Buddhism with various teachers, such as Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Lama Thubten Yeshe, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey, and Geshe Jampa Tekchog, and in various countries such as India, Nepal, England, France, and Australia. At the request of her teachers, Ven. Sangye Khadro began teaching in 1979, while living in England, and since then has taught in many countries around the world, most recently at Amitabha Buddhist Centre in Singapore, for eleven years. In 1988, Sangye Khadro took the full ordination or gelongma vows.
|Ven. Robina Courtin, teacher of module 3, Presenting the Path|
Since taking her first vows as a Buddhist nun from Lama Zopa Rinpoche in early 1978, Ven. Robina Courtin has worked full-time for the FPMT, serving at different times as editorial director of Wisdom Publications, editor of Mandala magazine, executive director of Liberation Prison Project, and, since 1987, as a teacher of Buddhist philosophy and practice. She now teaches throughout the year at FPMT centers worldwide and continues to edit the books of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. Her life, as well as her work with prisoners, have been featured in the documentary films Chasing Buddha and Key to Freedom.
|Ven. Constance Miller, teacher of module 4, The Spiritual Teacher|
Ordained in 1978 as a Buddhist nun in the Tibetan tradition, Ven. Constance Miller has taught Buddhist practice and philosophy in Buddhist centers in Europe, Asia, and the Americas since 1982. In particular, Ven. Connie has directed her knowledge and energy toward bringing the wisdom of Buddhism into Western culture, focusing specifically on the fields of education and publishing. In addition to her professional ability as a writer and editor, Ven. Connie has dedicated her energy for many years to the development of Universal Education, assisting Lama Thubten Yeshe in launching this project from its beginning in the early 1980s. She has focused her attention primarily on developing a clear exposition of the pedagogical principles that are the foundation of this initiative, which is now named Universal Education for Compassion and Wisdom (UECW). Over the years, she has taught in various FPMT centers and is currently teaching at Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa in Pomaia, Italy, one of the largest and most active Buddhist centers in Europe. She is responsible for designing, developing, and teaching new and innovative learning programs for adults and adolescents, as well as training programs for teachers and educators. She seeks ways to bring together more harmoniously the pedagogical approaches of East and West in modern education, while encouraging an exploration of themes pertaining to ethics and the development of the whole person in all aspects—emotional, cognitive, social, and so on—through the use of contemplative pedagogical methods.
|Dr. Nicolas Ribush, teacher of module 5, Death and Rebirth|
Dr. Nicholas Ribush, MB, BS, is a graduate of Melbourne University Medical School (1964) who first encountered Buddhism at Kopan Monastery, Nepal in 1972. Since then he has been a student of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche and a full-time worker for their international organization, the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT). He was a monk from 1974 to 1986. He established FPMT archiving and publishing activities at Kopan in 1973, and with Lama Yeshe founded Wisdom Publications in 1975. Between 1981 and 1996 he served variously as Wisdom’s director, editorial director, and director of development. Over the years he has edited and published many teachings by Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche and established and/or directed several other FPMT activities, including the International Mahayana Institute, Tushita Mahayana Meditation Centre, the Enlightened Experience Celebration, Mahayana Publications, Kurukulla Center for Tibetan Buddhist Studies, and now the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive. He was a member of the FPMT board of directors from its inception in 1983 until 2002.
|Renate Ogilvie, teacher of module 6, All About Karma|
Renate Ogilvie was born in East Germany, and worked as a literary agent and editor in London where she became interested in Buddhism. Since meeting Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 1990, she has been studying and teaching Buddhism in the Tibetan tradition at his request. She set up and served as director of Shakyamuni Buddha Hospice, training volunteers for working with the dying. As a psychotherapist working in private practice, she is interested in applying the principles of the Dharma to the specific suffering of modern life. She lives in Sydney with her husband and teenage son.
|Ven. Thubten Dondrub, teacher of module 7, Refuge in the Three Jewels|
Venerable Thubten Dondrub is an Australian-born monk in the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism. He has been teaching Buddhism to people around the world since the 1980s and has served as attendant to such eminent lamas as Khensur Ngawang Legden of Sera-je Monastery and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. An active participant in issues promoting peace, Ven. Dondrub is currently serving as the Education Officer of the International Mahayana Institute, the FPMT’s organization of monks and nuns, and is presently the resident teacher at Hayagriva Center, Perth, Australia.
|Kendall Magnussen, teacher of module 8, Establishing a Daily Practice|
Kendall Magnussen has been a Tibetan Buddhist practitioner since 1984. She has received extensive teachings on the complete path from Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Ven. Ribur Rinpoche, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and other qualified masters. Kendall has accumulated over four years of pilgrimage and retreat time in the US, Nepal, India, and Tibet. Since 1991, she has offered her life in service to Lama Zopa Rinpoche in a variety of capacities. In 2000-2004 she served in the FPMT Education Services as a trainer for those who work in FPMT centers and as the project coordinator for the creation of the Discovering BUDDHISM program. Kendall is now doing long-term retreat.
|Ven. Fedor Stracke, teacher of module 9, Samsara and Nirvana|
Ven. Tenzin Fedor was born in 1967 in Germany and has been a Buddhist monk since 1988. He has spent more than ten years in Sera Je Monastic University studying for the esteemed Geshe degree, which he is now close to attain. He was one of the founders and the first director of Sera Je IMI house, a complex especially built for the Western monks studying at the monastery. During his time in India he also attended many of the public teachings given by His Holiness the Dalai Lama on a variety of subjects in both Dharamsala and south India. Ven Fedor has been teaching in FPMT centers since 1988 and from 1996 has also served as Tibetan interpreted for various FPMT and non-FPMT geshes.
|Ven. Kaye Miner, teacher of module 10, How to Develop Bodhichitta|
Venerable Kaye Miner is an Australian nun in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. Since her ordination in 1990, she has been teaching Buddhism in FPMT centers in Australia and Europe. In 1999 she became the resident teacher at Maitreya Institute Amsterdam in The Netherlands combining, since 2003, the additional responsibility as Director of Maitreya Institute Emst, The Netherlands.
|Ven. Tenzin Tsaphel, teacher of module 11, Transforming Problems|
Ven. Tenzin Tsapel is Australia born and was inspired to become a Buddhist at her first Buddhist course when she met Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa in 1979. She was ordained in 1985 by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and has been an active teacher in Australia and New Zealand. She is one of the senior nuns at the Chenrezig Nuns Community in Queensland, Australia and for the last eight years has been studying with Geshe Tashi Tsering at Chenrezig Institute’s Buddhist Studies Programme, assisting as tutor for two modules of the Lamrim Chen-mo. During this time she has taught all of the Discovering BUDDHISM modules at Chenrezig.
|Tubten Pende, teacher of module 12, The Wisdom of Emptiness|
Tubten Pende, a.k.a. Jim Dougherty, is a practicing Buddhist since 1972 when he was introduced to Tibetan Buddhism in India. Pende was included in the first wave of the FPMT’s Western Buddhist teachers. He was the coordinator of the Geshe Studies Program at Manjushri Institute, England; spiritual program coordinator, director, and later resident teacher at Nalanda Monastery, France; and an FPMT International Office Education Services program developer of the Masters Program at Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa, Italy. He is interested in the effective application of Buddhist theory and practice in the daily life of ordinary people.
|Jon Landaw, teacher of module 13, Introduction to Tantra|
Jon Landaw, author of Buddhism for Dummies, was born in New Jersey in 1944. From 1972 to 1977 Jon worked as an English editor for the Translation Bureau of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India, producing numerous texts under the guidance of Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey. As a student of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche since 1973, Jon has edited numerous works for Wisdom Publications, including Wisdom Energy and Introduction to Tantra. He is also the author of Prince Siddhartha, a biography of Buddha for children, and Images of Enlightenment, published by Snow Lion in 1993. As an instructor of Buddhist meditation, he has taught in numerous Dharma centers throughout the United States, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and elsewhere. He currently lives in Capitola, California, USA with his wife and three children, and leads the Discovering Buddhism courses at Land of Medicine Buddha.
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The office is a place for Dharma practice. When one goes to the office, dealing with people, one has to recognize it’s a place to practice lam-rim, the three principles of the path, tantra, and the six paramitas. The six paramitas fit very well for daily life. They offer protection for you. Everything is there.