Foundation Program

The Foundation Program (FP) at KMC Plymouth provides an opportunity to engage in systematic study and meditation on the essential subjects of Kadampa Buddhism based on six books by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche. The emphasis in the classes, which consist of teachings, meditation, and discussion, is on gaining practical experience of Buddha’s teachings that you can apply to your daily life.

FP is a tried and tested way to gain a deeper understanding of the meaning of Buddha’s teachings, maintain a daily meditation practice that is both focused and powerful, and make genuine spiritual progress. If you have been coming to classes regularly and have been getting a lot out of your GP classes but feel you want to go a bit deeper with your study and practice – the systematic study of these essential Buddhist texts on FP may be a perfect next step for you.

“Our present understanding and experience of Dharma is quite superficial. We are like someone who has entered a huge food store and seen many things but sampled only a few. We may have received many different teachings from many different teachers, but we have taken in very little, just a few morsels.

There is a gap between us and the Dharma. It feels as if the Dharma is there and we are here. Our mind is not mixed with Dharma and so we cannot apply it in our daily lives. As a result our ordinary everyday problems remain. We also find it difficult to integrate our spiritual path into our daily lives so we cannot use this Dharma to solve our daily problems.

When we study Dharma out mind remains passive, like someone watching television. Therefore our life and our Dharma remain completely separate and unrelated.

Why is this? It is because we are not studying and practicing systematically according to a specially designed spiritual program. If we just dabble superficially in a spiritual path we will never gain a deep and stable experience, and our wisdom will never develop to its full potential. This is why the spiritual programs offered by the New Kadampa Tradition are so important.”  — Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche

Participants enrol for one book at a time and undertake to attend all the classes, memorise the Condensed Meaning of the text being studied and sit a written exam at the end of each section of a book.

Books and subjects studied on the program:

The New Heart of Wisdom, a commentary to the Heart Sutra.

How to Understand the Mind, an explanation of the types of mind

Joyful Path of Good Fortune, an explanation of the stages of the path to enlightenment

Universal Compassion and The New Eight Steps to Happiness, an explanation of the practices of Training the Mind (lojong)

Meaningful to Behold the commentary to Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life

Further information & enrolment
For more information and enrolment please contact the Education Programme Coordinator on: [email protected]