Three Spiritual Programs
Buddhism teaches that to find lasting happiness and meaning in our lives we need to follow a spiritual path. To follow this path it is important to have a close connection with a qualified teacher who can give us personal advice and encouragement, to listen to pure Dharma teachings, and to belong to a strong spiritual community. These enable us to penetrate deeply into the meaning of Buddha’s teachings, to maintain a daily meditation practice that is both focused and powerful, and to make genuine spiritual progress. Geshe Kelsang Gyatso has designed three programs for the study and practice of Kadampa Buddhism that are especially suited to the modern world:
- The General Program (GP)
- The Foundation Program (FP)
- The Teacher Training Program (TTP)
The General Program (GP) provides a basic introduction to Buddhist teachings and meditation that is suitable for beginners. Through these classes we can learn how to use Buddha’s advice in our daily lives to solve our problems and find the peace and happiness we seek. The GP classes also include advanced teachings and practices from both Sutra and Tantra. Classes take place at the Barrie Centre and at branch locations.
Through regular teachings and meditation, systematic study and group discussion, the Foundation Program (FP) offers the same training followed by spiritual practitioners in an unbroken lineage dating back to Buddha Shakyamuni. In this way we can gain authentic experience of the Dharma while still maintaining our contemporary lifestyle. By studying on this program we shall gain confidence in meditation – from basic techniques for overcoming everyday problems to practices leading to more advanced practices. Warm friendships develop as students inspire each other, sharing insights and experiences of the spiritual path.
Teacher Training Program
The Teacher Training Program (TTP) is designed for people who wish to train as authentic Dharma Teachers or simply engage with Buddha’s teachings in the deepest possible manner. In addition to completing the study of fourteen texts of Sutra and Tantra, the student is required to observe certain commitments with regard to behavior and way of life, and to complete a number of meditation retreats. Through a deep and continuing commitment to the program of study, meditation, discussion, and retreat, we can gain deep experience of Buddha’s teachings, establish a strong meditation practice, and become a qualified teacher in our own right. The Teacher Training Program is not yet offered at Jampa Ling Kadampa Buddhist Centre.