VAJRA VIDYA INSTITUTE, in Sarnath, India near Varnasi, is the realization of a longtime dream of the Venerable Thrangu Rinpoche to create a monastic college (shedra) where Kagyu monks can be trained in the same place where the Buddha gave his first teaching. The Institute -- named for the 16th Karmapa, Rigpa Dorje ("Indestructible Knowledge") -- is constructed according to the original architectural plans of Nalanda, the great Buddhist university that flourished in India more than a thousand years ago.
Thrangu Rinpoche inaugurated the shedra in October, 1999 with H.H. Dalai Lama as its first teacher. The first course was taught by Thrangu Rinpoche, who will continue to act as director and faculty. The shedra offers a 5-year program, culminating in the degree of Khenpo. Future plans include expanding this to a 9-year program. Currently 71 monks and 6 faculty are in residence. The Institute also has a unique program of advanced training for monks from other Kagyu shedras to come together for study and debate. Additionally the Institute will be made available to Rinpoche's students from all over the world to attend teachings and retreat.
VAJRA VIDYA INSTITUTE is soliciting funding in the following areas:
- transcription and publication of texts; library and computer support
- scholarship fund
- salaries: English and Chinese teachers, additional scholastic faculty
THE VENERABLE THRANGU RINPOCHE was recognized as a tulku at the age of 4. He is one of the foremost teachers of the Kagyu lineage, and is now tutor to the 17th Karmapa. Rinpoche is Abbot of Gampo Abbey in Nova Scotia, director of Mangal D.V.I.P. Children's School, Namo Buddha Retreat, Tashi Choling Monastery and Tara Abbey, all in Nepal.
Donations are tax-deductible. Please make checks payable to
VAJRA VIDYA INSTITUTE. Please mail donations and inquiries to:
Debra Ann Robinson
Himalayan Children's Fund
P.O. Box 15644
Beverly Hills, California 90209