Our centres are blessed each year from the teachings of our Gurus and teachers from FPMT. Here are our teachers from 2021.
KYABJE LAMA ZOPA RINPOCHE
Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche is our Guru and our Spiritual Director. Each year, our centres invite, Rinpoche, to kindly come and teach at our individual centres.
Rinpoche has been in the precious Kopan Monastery since March 2020, and has been giving teachings via video recordings to all His students.
We pray that Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche comes to India soon.
VISITING TEACHERS OF 2021 FROM THE GELUK LINEAGE
KYABJE KHANDRO KUNGA BHUMA RINPOCHE
Rangjung Neljorma Khadro Namsel Drönme (Khadro-la) was introduced to the Maitripa College in 2012 by Lama Zopa Rinpoche where she met with Yangsi Rinpoche, toured and blessed the offices, classroom, and Jokhang, and gave one of her first teachings in the west to the Maitripa College community.
Khadro-la is the State Medium of the Tenma Oracle (The Tenma Goddesses are Twelve Guardian Deities of Tibetan Buddhism). Ven. Roger Kunsang’s interview with Khadro la in the 2008 edition of Mandala magazine provides an introduction to her early life (excerpted here). The October – December 2012 edition of Mandala magazine also has an interview with Khadro-la
HIS EMINENCE KYABJE JHADO RINPOCHE
His Eminence, Kyabje Jhado Rinpoche, bestowed teachings to students via Tushita Meditation Centre’s Choekhor Duchen teachings in the month of July 2021.
Jhado Rinpoche (Tenzin Jungne) was born in 1954 to a nomadic family living in the area of Namtso Lake, 220 kilometers north of Lhasa, Tibet. At the age of three he was recognized and enthroned as the 6th incarnation of the abbot of Jhado Monastery.
Jhado Tulku Rinpoche is one of the most highly esteemed lamas in the Geluk lineage today. In addition to his excellent education in the Geluk monastic college system, over the years Rinpoche has also received many oral transmissions and empowerments from His Holiness the Dalai Lama and his two main tutors, as well as from many great teachers from other traditions, including the famous Nyingma master Trulshik Rinpoche and Chogye Trichen Rinpoche.
Renowned for his keen intelligence and dynamic teaching style, Jhado Rinpoche is also highly acclaimed for his ability to engage Western students in ways that are interesting and personally relevant. In addition to these qualities, Rinpoche is also well known and loved for his gentle demeanor and his kindness
HIS EMINENCE KYABJE SERKONG TENSHAB RINPOCHE
Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche is the reincarnation of Tsenshab Serkong Rinpoche, a highly accomplished lama born in Tibet in 1914. In 1948, having received his Geshe Lharampa degree, Tsenshab Serkong Rinpoche was appointed one of the seven Tsenshab or master debate partners to His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. Tsenshab Serkong Rinpoche, who passed away in 1983, served His Holiness in this capacity for the rest of his life and imparted to His Holiness many lineages, initiations and oral transmissions.
Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche was born in the Spiti Valley in India in 1984.
GESHE TENZIN ZOPA
Geshe Tenzin Zopa holds the honoured Geshe (Doctorate) degree from Sera Je Monastic University, South India having completed the 20 year monastic curriculum in just 17 years. He was ordained at the age of 9 by the late great mahasiddha Geshe Lama Konchog, received novice ordination from Geshe Lundrup Sopa Rinpoche and full ordination from HH the 14th Dalai Lama
A prolific teacher, Geshela is the author of 12 books, “Buddha Nature and Preliminary Prayers and Their Explanations”, “Karma & the 12 Links”, “Ask the Geshe – Ancient Wisdom for Modern Times”, “Mirror to Your Life”, “Whose Truth?”, “The Yamantaka Short Sadhana Practice”, “Meditation”, “A concise commentary to the Lamp on the Path to Enlightenment”; “Lam Rim – Graduated Path to Enlightenment” and “Buddhist Tenets – A commentary on Chokyi Gyaltsen’s A Presentation of Tenets” , “The Thousand Buddha Relic Stupa”, “The Holy Child of Kopan” and 3 more are in the pipeline “37 Practices to Enlightenment”, “Commentary on the Bodhicaryavatara” and “Buddhist Tantra – The Practice of Purity”
Geshe Tenzin Zopa gave teachings on Atisha’s Lamp on the Path to Enlightenment at Choe Khor Sum Ling, Bangalore and Revealing the True Essence of the Mind over 4 sessions at Tushita Meditation Centre, Dharamkot. We had the pleasure of hearing Geshe Zopa in An Open Heart Conversation with Aman Bansal as a part of Choe Khor Sum Ling’s series with teachers.
VENERABLE GESHE LHAKDOR
Ven. Geshe Lhakdor has served His Holiness the Dalai Lama as his translator and religious assistant since 1989. A distinguished Buddhist scholar, Geshe Lhakdor was the English translator for His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama, from 1989 to 2005. He has co-translated and co-produced several books by the Dalai Lama. As Director of the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives in Dharamsala, Geshe facilitates the Science for Monks program and shares his own expertise as a scholar of science and philosophy. Geshe is a trustee of the Foundation for Universal Responsibility, established by His Holiness. He is also the Director of the Central Archive of His Holiness and a member of the Advisory Board of the Institute of Tibetan Classics in Montreal, Canada. He is now the Director of the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives in Dharamshala India, and head of the Science Education Project.
From 1976 to 1986, he studied specialized Buddhist philosophy in the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics, Dharamshala and received the Master of Prajnaparamita in 1982. He also received the Master of Madhyamika in 1989 and the Master of Philosophy from the University of Delhi. Since 2002, Geshe Lhakdor has been an Honorary Professor at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. In 2008, he was also conferred an Honorary Professorship by the University of Delhi, Department of Psychology.
Geshe la, gave teachings at Tushita this year, on Riding the Emotional Roller Coster.
GESHE DORJI DAMDUL
Geshe Dorji Damdul did his schooling in Tibetan Children’s Village School, Dharamsala with a main interest in Physics and Mathematics. In 1988 he joined the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics, Dharamsala for formal studies in Buddhist logic, philosophy and epistemology. He finished his Geshe Lharampa Degree (equivalent to PhD) in 2002 from Drepung Loseling Monastery after 15 years of study in Buddhist philosophy.
While assigned with the task of translating for H.H. the Dalai Lama in India and abroad, Geshe-la was appointed by the Office of H.H. the Dalai lama as the Deputy Director of Tibet House, Cultural Centre of H.H. the Dalai Lama, New Delhi to take on the responsibility to teach the many young people who are interested in philosophy, human values and psychology.
Geshe la taught the Wisdom of Emptiness – Summary of Mulamadhyamikakarika at Root Institute for Wisdom Culture, Bodhgaya, this April 2021. This was organised in collaboration with Tushita Meditation Centre, Dharamkot.
Upcoming teachings – Bodhichitta retreat – 28 – 31 October 2021 at Root Institute.
Geshe Dorji Damdul: Bodhicitta Retreat – 28 Oct–31 Oct 2020
GESHE TENZIN NAMDAK
Geshe Tenzin Namdak studied for 20 years at Sera Jey, one of the great Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in India, where he received his Geshe degree 2017. He continued his practice at Gyume Tantric College for one year and was also appointed by the office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to teach monastic conduct to Western aspirants in Dharamsala, India. He is the resident teacher at Jamyang Buddhist Centre, London, and teaches also at other centres in Europe and India.
Here is an interview of Geshe Tenzin Namdak given to FPMT Mandala, Online magazine in 2017.
GESHE MA KELSANG WANGMO
Geshe Kelsang Wangmo was raised in a Catholic family in Germany. She attended church but grew uninterested in religion in her teens. After completing high school in 1989, she went on an extensive backpacking trip, which included India. She had planned to stay for a couple of weeks before returning to start university, studying medicine. But eventually, she stayed on.
She joined an introduction to Buddhism course at Tushita Meditation Centre in Dharamshala. She went on to study Buddhism seriously. She took ordination as a nun in April 1991. She later enrolled in the traditional Geshe curriculum (a 16-year course, considered equivalent to a Ph. D. in Buddhist philosophy) at the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics (IBD) in Dharamshala. In 2011, the IBD conferred the degree of Geshe, a Tibetan Buddhist academic degree for monastics, on her, thus making her the world’s first female Geshe. Since 2004, she has been teaching Buddhist philosophy classes in English in Dharamsala, following the curriculum of the IBD.
In July 2021 – Geshe ma Kelsang Wangmo expertly summarised and reviewed in a Q and A the precious teachings on Recognizing My Mother: An Experiential Song on the View by Changkya Rölpai Dorjé given by His Eminence Yangten Rinpoche at Tushita Meditation Centre.
FPMT Registered Teachers
VENERABLE TENZIN LEGTSOK
Venerable Legtsok was born in the USA and named Brian, in 1973. After being inspired by explanations of the Lam-Rim and the amazing attitude of Bodhicitta, he became a monk in 2001 and has since taken the full-ordination vows. In 2004, he entered the Geshe studies program at Sera Je Monastery in South India. He is an FPMT accredited teacher.
Since 2007, Ven. Legtsok has given monthly talks about the Buddhist path at Choe Khor Sum Ling study group in Bangalore. While he warns students that “he has no positive qualities whatsoever but you might have a good laugh watching him bumble along”, he enjoys celebrating the good fortune to have met the Buddha Dharma in this life, by sharing his knowledge of Buddhist thought and practice with others.
VENERABLE TENZIN DROLMA
Venerable Tenzin Drolma was born in Chicago, US, in 1961 and became a lifelong learner. She received her undergraduate degree in religious studies, philosophy and psychology. She has graduates degree in Counseling Psychology from the University of Denver and in Buddhist Studies from Maitripa College. For 25 years she worked in the mental health field.
Ven. Drolma was ordained as a nun in the Tibetan tradition in 2009. She moved to Vajrapani Institute and was resident sangha and assistant SPC for four years. While at Vajrapani Institute she taught courses and led meditations as well.
Ven. Drolma’s teaching style includes the psychological aspects of Buddhism and she has been described as a very approachable teacher. While strongly based in the tradition of the Gelukpa school, her teaching emphasizes those aspects most helpful to modern students.
VENERABLE SANGYE KHADRO
Originally from California, Kathleen McDonald (Sangye Khadro) began studying Buddhism with Tibetan lamas in Dharamsala, India, in 1973. She became a nun in Nepal the following year, and received full (bhikshuni) ordination in 1988. At the request of her teachers, she began teaching in 1980, and since then has been teaching Buddhism and meditation in various countries around the world, occasionally taking time off for personal retreats. She served as resident teacher in Buddha House, Australia, for two years and in Amitabha Buddhist Centre in Singapore for eleven years. From 2008-2015 she followed and graduated from the Masters Program at Lama Tsong Khapa Institute in Italy. She was the resident teacher at the Center for Wisdom and Compassion in Copenhagen, Denmark from 2016-2018. She is the author of two books, How to Meditate and Awakening the Kind Heart.
VENERABLE OLIVIER ROSSI
Born in France in 1969, Ven. Olivier joined the Masters Program at Institute Lama Tzong Khapa in Italy from 1998 to 2005 under the guidance of Venerable Geshe Jampa Gyatso of Sera Jay Jhadrel Khamtsen and took ordination in June 98. On the advice of his teacher he took the positions of teacher assistant for the residential Basic Program at ILTK from 2005 to 2007, for the Masters Program 2008 to 2013 and again for the Masters Program in 2015-2016.
He is currently teaching the residential Basic Program at Munigyana Center in Sicily. Over his 23 years of ordination Ven. Olivier has also been leading numerous retreats and weekend courses in FPMT centers in Europe and India.
VENERABLE TENZIN NAMJONG
Born and raised in Hawaii, Venerable Tenzin Namjong studied and trained in Zen and Theravada traditions before embracing the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, due mainly to the kindness of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
He holds a B.A. in Philosophy from Princeton University and has been part of the 19-year Geshe (Doctorate of Buddhist Philosophy) study program at Sera Je Monastery in Bylakuppe, India since 2007.
Venerable Namjong is a registered teacher of the FPMT and regularly teaches at Choe Khor Sum Ling Centre in Bangalore.
VENERABLE ROUBINA COURTIN
Ven Robina is the founder of the Liberation Prison Project, which brings free Dharma into prisons all around the world: liberationprisonproject.org.
Ven Robina is a dynamic teacher with great skill in articulating the Dharma for Western audiences, in a style that combines wit, sharp insight, and deep compassion.
To know more about Ven. Robina please visit her website: robinacourtin.com
VENERABLE TENZIN GACHE
This is an intermediate course, suitable for students who have attended one of our 10-day Introduction to Buddhism courses or have taken the full online program, The Buddhist Path of Training the Mind and Going Deeper: The Buddhist Path of Training the Mind.
The way we learn to be successful and happy brings us often to a place of restlessness, unhappiness, and dissatisfaction.
The actual cause of our dissatisfied mind is our inability to see the nature of reality as it is.
This course touches on both the level of the heart and the view. You will learn techniques that will help you to live more in accordance with your nature. When the mind aligns with this natural balance, the body also relaxes, releasing patterns of attachment and aversion to reclaim the present moment with freedom and ease.
VENERABLE THUBTEN KHADRO
Ven Thubten Khadro was born in Venezuela of European parents, emigrated to New Zealand in 2004, and has led courses and retreats for FPMT Centers in NZ, Australia, India, Nepal, Germany, Spain, US and Latin America. Her international background allows her to have an open, friendly and warm manner. Ven. Khadro is a FPMT Registered Teacher; currently studying an online Master Programme in Buddhist Philosophy, is a Buddhist Hospice / Healthcare Chaplain, a 16 Guidelines Accredited Facilitator and has served in various FPMT centres around the world.
Ven. Khadro, who has a unique gift to make these authentic, ancient teachings relevant to the 21st century and our modern lives.
Kabir Saxena, was born to an English mother and an Indian father and raised in both Delhi and London, attending Oxford University.
He met his main teachers Lama Thubten Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 1979 and has been living and working in FPMT Centres almost ever since, including helping to establish Root Institute and serving as its Director for many years, before being ordained as a monk in 2002. He is currently the Spiritual Programme Coordinator at Tushita Delhi.
Kabir ji has been teaching Buddhism to Westerners and Indians in India and Nepal since 1988 and presents the Dharma in an appropriately humourous and meaningful way for modern students.
We pray that our Gurus and Teachers have long, health, stable lives, and fulfil their dharma aspirations without obstacles.