Calm Abiding & Special Insight
Available in English, French & Spanish
About the course
After we already have covered the topics from guru devotion up to the section on joyous effort, including death and rebirth, the twelve links, karma, ethics, how to develop renunciation and Bodhicitta and the first four of the six perfections with Geshe Losel, from September 2021 onwards, we study the last two of the six perfections: Calm Abiding (concentration) and Special insight (wisdom) with Nalanda’s abbot – Geshe Jamphel.
In the chapter on calm abiding in his Great Graduated Path, Je Tsongkhapa presents what conditions are necessary to develop calm abiding. He explains how to develop concentration, which object to choose, how to actually focus ones mind and he identifies the main hindrances for the development of calm abiding. Based on this, we will study the nine mental abidings for the development of calm abiding, the six forces and four attentions.
Je Tsongkhapa also clarifies the measure that calm abiding and special insight have been achieved, he refutes mistaken assertions of what calm abiding and special insight means and describes how these two are developed in stages.
In the extensive chapter on special insight, in which we will be absorbed in for the most of 2022, Je Tsongkhapa describes in extensive detail how to develop a correct view on emptiness.
First we will explore how to correctly identify the object of negation by examining others’ assertions that Je Tsongkhapa describes as mistaken and clarifying the Madhyamaka position according to Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition. In this way Je Tsongkhapa shows how to avoid a too broad or a too narrow identification of the object of negation.
After the identification of the object of negation, the Great Stages illustrates the procedure of how to refute the object of negation.
Then the text shows how to use this procedure to generate the right philosophical view within our own mind-stream by explaining the meditation on the absence of inherent existence based on a chariot and how to apply this example to the self.
In the refutation of a self of phenomena, we will explore the refutation of production from self, other, both or neither.
Je Tsongkhapa goes into great detail on refuting others’ assertions and on clarifying his own position.
As Geshe Jamphel mentioned previously, the Lamrim Chenmo goes into great detail within the section of special insight and it might be philosophically challenging.
Geshe Jamphel is well-known for the clarity and depth of his explanations, therefore students have the opportunity to delve deep into these two important topics.
- The course consists of 2-3 hours of teachings Monday to Thursday, with one-week breaks every few weeks and holidays in winter and summer.
- The teachings are streamed live and recorded.
- Additionally, there are regular revision sessions with one of our course assistants.
- Revision sessions are available online in English via ZOOM.
Also available online
We are now happy to offer an online studying option. The online study platform includes live-streamed classes, all course materials, review classes via Zoom and possibility to meet and interact with other students.
How to join
You can still join us as a resident or online student. To do so, please contact Program Coordinator – Ven. Tsöndrü via email@example.com.