With Kadam Michelle Gauthier
Tuesdays 6:30pm – 8:30pm
The Foundation Program is a study program for those who wish to study Buddhism in a more in-depth and structured way. Join us in our study of Geshe Kelsang Gyatso’s book “Universal Compassion.”
Universal Compassion is about transformation. Based on a famous Buddhist poem, Training the Mind in Seven Points, it shows how true mental freedom and lasting happiness can be achieved by transforming our mind.
The fundamental insight underlying this book is that the world we experience is a reflection of our mind and so if we want to experience the world in a positive way we need to develop a positive mind. The supremely positive mind is universal compassion, which is developed using the special meditations in this book.
As we gradually replace our habitual self-cherishing with a genuine cherishing of others, we find our powers of transformation increase. Eventually we reach the point where we can transform any situation, however unpleasant, into a positive experience and an opportunity to make progress in our spiritual development.
Class Format: Each class includes prayers, meditation, teaching and paired discussion. This class Tuesdays 6:30pm – 8:30pm. Click here for our most current schedule.
What is Foundation Program?
The Foundation Program is a unique structured study program that enables us to gain an experience of Buddhist teachings with a deeper understanding and to develop a regular meditation practice. It is ideal for those who have an introductory understanding of Buddhism and who wish to learn more. We meet each week during term times, and have regular term breaks and a longer break in the summer. Students are requested to enroll for a section of the text and commit to attend all the classes, as well as try to go to a puja (chanted meditation) and General Program class.
Read a transcript of Geshe Kelsang Gyatso’s teaching on the Foundation Program here: Geshe Kelsang’s Foundation Program Transcript
Benefits of Foundation Program
Through regular teachings, meditation, systematic study and group discussion, the Foundation Program offers deep support for your spiritual life. In essence, it is the same training followed by spiritual practitioners in an unbroken lineage dating back to Buddha Shakyamuni. Its special quality is that we can gain authentic experience without abandoning our modern lifestyle. By studying on this program we will gain great confidence in meditation – from basic techniques for overcoming our everyday problems, to practices leading to unsurpassed happiness and permanent inner peace.
Click Here for a detailed brochure of the Foundation Program.
How to Enroll
If you are interested in joining FP, or if you just want to find out more about the study program, please call (602)243-5220 or email Michelle Bales at FP@MeditationINArizona.org
The Foundation Program is for those who wish to deepen their understanding and experience of Buddhism by engaging in the systematic study of six essential Buddhist text.
Joyful Path of Good Fortune – A commentary to Atisha’s Lamrim instructions, The Stages of the Path to Enlightenment. By studying Joyful Path, we gain the ability to put all Buddha’s teachings of both Sutra and Tantra into practice. We can easily make progress and complete the stages of the path to the supreme happiness of enlightenment. From a practical point of view, Lamrim is the main body of Buddha’s teachings, and the other teachings are like the limbs.
Universal Compassion – A commentary to Bodhisattva Chekhawa’s Training the Mind in Seven Points. By studying Universal Compassion, we gain the ability to integrate Buddha’s teachings into our daily lives and solve all our human problems.
The New Heart of Wisdom – A commentary to the Heart Sutra. Through studying Heart of Wisdom, we gain a realization of the ultimate nature of reality. By gaining this realization, we can eliminate the ignorance of self-grasping which is the root of all our suffering.
Meaningful to Behold – A commentary to Shantideva’s Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life. When we study Meaningful to Behold, we learn how to transform our daily activities into the Bodhisattva’s way of life, thereby making every moment of our human life meaningful.
How to Understand the Mind – A detailed explanation of the mind, based on the works of the Buddhist scholars Dharmakirti and Dignaga. By studying Understanding the Mind, we understand the relationship between our mind and its external objects. If we understand that objects depend upon the subjective mind, we can change the way objects appear to us by changing our own mind. Gradually, we shall gain the ability to control our mind and in this way, solve all our problems.
Eight Steps to Happiness – A commentary to eight beautiful verses that comprise one of Buddhism’s best-loved and most enduring teachings, Eight Verses of Training the Mind. Composed by the great Tibetan Bodhisattva, Langri Tangpa, this short poem shows how we can transform all life’s difficulties into valuable spiritual insights.