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GESHE GYALTSEN TSERING (BUDDHIST PHILOSOPHY CLASS)

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FIRST BUDDHIST PHILOSOPHY CLASS

Time: 9:00 am to 10:15 am
Text: Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment (lam rim chen mo)
Teacher: Geshe Gyaltsen Tsering

Lama Tsongkhapa (1357–1419) was one of the greatest reformers of Tibetan Buddhism and founder of the Gelukpa tradition. He wrote the Lamrim Chenmo to give students a reliable guide to the stages of the path, from the very beginning all the way through to the attainment of enlightenment itself. This text is one of Lama Tsongkhapa’s greatest works. It is a commentary on Atisha’s Lamp of the Path to Enlightenment (Byang chub lam sgron).

This year Geshe la will continue guiding us through the following subjects from the section on Training in the Path of a Person of Great Capacity in Je Tsongkhapa’s masterpiece work:

March 1 – July 13

  • Preparing for calm abiding (shamatha; zhi gnas)
  • Focusing your mind
  • Dealing with laxity and excitement
  • Attaining calm abiding
  • Calm abiding as part of the path
  • Why special insight (vipashyana; lhag mthong) is necessary

August 1 – December 12

  • Identifying the object of negation
  • Dependent arising and emptiness
  • The concept of validity at the conventional level
  • The distinction between the Svatantrika and Prasangika schools
  • The selflessness of phenomena and persons and the reasons establishing it
  • How to train in the unification of calm abiding and special insight

Recommended Text:
Tsongkhapa’s Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, Vol. I–III, translated by the Lamrim Chenmo Translation Committee, Snow Lion.

Additional Reading:

  • Atisha’s Lamp for the Path to Enlightenment, commentary by Geshe Sonam Rinchen, translated by Ruth Sonam, Snow Lion.
  • Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand, Pabongka Rinpoche, translated by Michael Richards, Wisdom Publications.
  • Life and Teachings of Tsongkhapa, edited by Professor Robert Thurman, LTWA.
  • The Essence of Superfine Gold, His Holiness the Third Dalai Lama, translated by Dr Chok, LTWA.
  • The Jewel Ornament of Liberation, Gampopa, translated by Khenpo Konchog Gyaltsen, Snow Lion.
  • The Three Principal Aspects of the Path, Je Tsongkapha with commentary by His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama, translated by Geshe Lhakdor and Jeremy Russell, LTWA.
  • Words of My Perfect Teacher, Patrul Rinpoche, translated by the Padmakara Translation Group, Shambhala.
  • Opening the Mind and Generating a Good Heart, His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, translated by Jeremy Russell, LTWA.