Spiritual programme

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Appearance and Reality – With Geshe Namdak
From Monday, 8. January 2018
To Thursday, 11. January 2018
Location : Main gompa

This course will cover the explanation of the two truths, the conventional and the ultimate. In Tibetan Buddhism it is said that all phenomena possess these two aspects, the conventional/relative/concealing aspect, how things appear to us and the ultimate/absolute, how things really exist. 

Venerable Geshe Tenzin Namdak is a Dutch monk graduated from the Sera Je Monastic University, as the first Westerner ever to complete the full formar studies of the geshe degree. He is an FPMT registered teacher and has extensive teaching experience.

This course will include meditations, Buddhist philosophy classes and group discussions.

Beginners are welcome too. If you consider yourself a beginner, we recommend as preparation following these Lam Rim guided meditations – PDF – by Ven. Thubten Chodron.


Mon 8  
6:00pm Supper
7:00pm Introduction to the course by Spiritual Coordinator
Tue 9 to Wed 10  
6:45am Morning meditation
7:30am Breakfast
8:30am Session with Geshe Namdak
10.00am Break
10.30am Session with Geshe Namdak
12 noon Lunch
2:00pm Discussion group
3:15pm Break
3:30pm Session with Geshe Namdak
5.00pm Break
6:00pm Supper
7:00pm Evening meditation 
Thu 11  
6:45am Morning meditation
7:30am Breakfast
8:30am Session with Geshe Namdak
10.00am Break
10.30am Last session with Geshe Namdak
12 noon Big Love Lunch

Please note: this schedule is subject to change.

Guidelines of behaviour in a Dharma environment

Root Institute is a delightful, semi-monastic meditation centre.

To maintain a conducive, spiritually harmonious atmosphere for inner reflection and meditation, we kindly ask all our students, guests and visitors to observe the following guidelines:

  • Respect all life: do not intentionally kill any living being, even small insects.

  • Respect others' property: do not steal or take anything not freely given.

  • Be honest and straightforward: do not lie or intentionally deceive others.

  • Be celibate: no sexual activity; this also includes no romantic holding hands, hugging, massages and other physical displays of affection.

  • Be alert and mindful*: avoid intoxicants such as alcohol, drugs and cigarettes; we encourage you to stop smoking while here, but if this is impossible, you can smoke outside the gates.

  • Be considerate of others' silence: keep silence in the appropriate areas and at all times during residential courses, especially in the meditation hall (gompa) and dormitories; no singing or playing music and, in general, maintain a quiet demeanour while on the property.

  • Be considerate of the monks and nuns: dress respectfully; please no shorts above the knee, tank-top shirts, or tight and revealing clothing.

  • Couples: can stay in the same room for two weeks or less under the celibacy policy.

Please be aware:

  • * The Bihar state government has passed laws totally prohibiting the sale and consumption of alcohol in the state, with very severe penalties! Please ensure that you do not carry any alcohol with you in Bihar.

  • Also, please note that those in service or teaching in FPMT centers and projects do not engage in the practice of Shugden.

General information about the spiritual programme

Our spiritual programme now runs from beginning of September through to end of April.

On the appropriate dates in the Tibetan calendar year-round, however, we observe the standard pujas of the Gelug tradition and these are drop-in sessions which anyone can attend. If you are in Bodhgaya and would like to come along, please feel welcome to join us for:

  • Tara puja
  • Medicine Buddha puja
  • Lama Ch'opa ts'og offering
  • Protector puja

Unless otherwise indicated, registration is required for all spiritual programme events except drop-in sessions, Festival of Lights & Merit, and Mahabodhi Stupa events.

To book your own individual or group retreat, please go to Blessings > Retreat – at Stupa Garden of Compassion, through which you can also book accommodation.