How to Practice the Sadhana of Guru Yoga of Sapan - Manjushri
To follow up on our recent empowerment visit by HH the Sakya Trizin, Geshe Jamyang plans to offer a teaching on the Guru Yoga practice of Sakya Pandita (Sapan) and Manjushri. He will institute this as the main practice for Nalanda's Vajrayana program for the upcoming year, on the 2nd and 4th Mondays.
Part of the day may include a compare & contrast introduction to the Chakrasamava Sadhana as well. (For lunch information, see schedule below.) Although these sessions are particularly suited to those who received the empowerments, even if you did not attend the empowerments you are welcome to attend. In this case, you would be "auditing" to discover the foundations of these practices, rather than developing the formal practice for personal use.
The teaching plan may be adjusted to fit the needs of those attending, based on their interests, experience, and capacity. But for those who received the initiations, you should expect to hear an explanation of the Guru Yoga sadhana and how to do it, as well as more information about the Chakrasamvara sadhana. This plan is still in evolution, so be flexible but mark your calendar for a day of practice-oriented learning for Meditators, Bodhisattva aspirants, and Vajrayana initiates.
Four Tuesdays - Sept 3, 10, 17, and 24
7 - 8:30 pm
Introduction to Buddhism
This class is intended for people new to Buddhism. It’s common to be exposed to certain parts of Buddhism and to end up with a lot of questions about how it all fits together. This class will explain the important concepts and practices and goals, and will also paint a picture of how the various pieces fit together and form a coherent path. It will be on four 1.5 hour classes on Tuesday evenings. The class will cover:
How to Meditate and Orientation to Nalanda
The Main Ideas of Buddhism: Four Noble Truths, Suffering, Enlightenment
The Main Ideas, Deeper: Compassion, Karma, the Middle Way
Buddhist Wisdom, Goals, and Following the Path
Questions and discussion are encouraged. Each class will have hand-outs. The recommended text is Buddhism for Beginners by Thubten Chodren.
The instructor, Bob Saunders, has been studying and practicing Buddhism for over 35 years. He has studied with Nalanda founder, Loppon Jamyang Tsultrim, for 30 years; has had over 30 days of instruction from His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and has been on pilgrimage to the 8 holy sites in India & Nepal and to Tibet.
For questions, send an email to Nalanda or contact Bob Saunders at 360 402-6815 or email Bob directly.
2nd & 4th Mondays of the Month
Classical Buddhist Foundation Practice [Ngöndro]
Geshe-la will be on summer break during July and August. We will practice as a group over the summer. These sessions will be a great chance to join the group and catch up with help from the students as we practice and discuss what we have covered, up through the mandala offering.
"Ngöndro" is the preliminary or foundation practices of Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism. We meet on the second and fourth Monday evenings of each month (except July 8). Geshe-la plans to transform this group into a Guru Yoga practice group in the fall.
Two practice texts for participants are available through Nalanda ($10 each), and one published book is recommended for participants to buy on their own: Turning Confusion into Clarity by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche (Snow Lion, about $25). Please call Jan Vleck 360-594-5972 to learn more about joining this group.
Training the Mind, Changing our Self
Chanting, Meditation, and Discussion
These sessions are appropriate for any level of student. We meet all year, including during the summer, for a 7 PM meditation featuring chanting, meditation and discussion. Weekly discussion periods after the closing dedication prayer are intended to support your meditation and understanding-- they form around questions and comments of those in attendance. Plus they're a fun way to get to know your sangha companions.
Although first Thursdays of each month are typically Dharma teachings by Geshe Jamyang, he takes a summer break so mark your calendar for his next teaching on September 5. During the summer, Thursday sessions will be led by senior meditators.
1:30 - 3 pm
BOOK DISCUSSION on "Tantra"
This group meets weekly to read and discuss the book Tantra by Geshe Tashi Tsering, which was selected to increase our benefit from the Highest Guru Yoga empowerments presented earlier this month. Sonam Dorje joins us as a fellow student and expert resource.
Tantra (Wisdom Publications; volume 6 in The Foundations of Buddhist Thought) is written for a contemporary reader. The jacket says, Anticipating the many questions Westerners have upon first encountering tantra's colorful imagery and veiled language, Tantra uses straight talk to explain deities, initiations, mandalas, and the body's subtle physiology of channels and chakras. Please obtain your own copy of the book - Nalanda is not providing them.
For more information call either Bob Harris 360-352-2819 or Jan Vleck 360-584-5972.
Green Tara Group
2nd Sunday of each month
12:15 - 1:45 pm
Meditation, Music, Mantras, and Movement
The Tara Circle is a wonderful way to engage body, voice, and mind. Moving to recorded music, our Tara Circle learns hand mudras and movements to bring bliss and joy. We move then we 'sit' for 20 minutes.
This practice follows the second Sunday 'Long Sits'.
For information, contact Kim Abbey at 206-387-6134 (phone or text).
The Nalanda Study Group
1st & 3rd Saturday of the Month
1 - 3 pm
Come and try out this friendly ongoing book group, guided by Sonam Dorje. Each book will be discussed at alternate sessions. You may read either or both (and attend either 1st or 3rd Saturdays, or both as you choose). Typically the group reads aloud, then discusses, so it's low pressure. Books are not available through Nalanda.
1st Saturdays: The Sun of Wisdom by Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche, a commentary on Nagarjuna’s Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way.
3rd Saturdays: Being Nobody Going Nowhere by Ayya Khema, contemporary clear, practical instruction on meditation and techniques for overcoming counterproductive mental habits and beliefs in our daily lives.
2nd Sunday of the Month
Are you curious to try out longer meditation sessions? Come to the monthly long sit, where the conditions are highly conducive to practice: you will be with other meditators and surrounded by a beautiful dharma center! Mark your calendar for the second Sunday each month.
Selected Teachings from Nalanda
Some of Geshe Jamyang Tsultrim's teachings on the first Thursday of each month as well as teachings from Nalanda's Retreats are now available online at Talks.
Retreat at Friday Harbor with Khenpo Pema
Lojong Retreat (Mind Training)
The week before Khenpo Pema teaches at Nalanda, he is guiding a Lojong retreat, for transforming the mind by cultivating beneficial mental habits. No prerequisites; appropriate for beginners or experienced meditators. Residential retreat; $200 includes 2 daily meals.
Khenpo Pema to Give Public Talk
Being of Service From a Bodhisattva Perspective
Khenpo Pema will address the Buddhist perspective on engaging in generous service to others through volunteering and the like. Invite your friends and family.
Khenpo Pema Will Offer Dharma Teaching
Khenpo Pema's discussion will include our intentions, attitudes, limitations to be overcome, and burnout prevention. It is important to compliment our study and meditation with compassionate service. Volunteering in social service is an opportunity to practice all six paramitas simultaneously, yet it is also important to practice self-care while helping others. Come and learn more about this intricate balance.
Loppon Jamyang Teaching
Late Fall 2019
The Aspiration of Samantabadhra
Loppon Jamyang would like to repeat the teaching he gave in June at Sakya Monastery on "The Aspiration of Samantabadhra", an aspirational prayer we have recited on special Nalanda occasions over the years. Jan attended the Seattle talk and very much enjoyed it because it provided enormous insight into the structure and meaning of the prayer. He teaches from an untranslated commentary written by his own teacher, Khenchen Appey Rinpoche (1927-2010), so the commentary is from a very direct lineage master who is no longer with us.