Teacher Training Program

The Teacher Training Program (TTP) is for people who wish to become qualified Kadampa Buddhist teachers or who simply wish to go deeper into Buddhist study.

TTP is designed for people who wish to train as authentic Dharma Teachers or simply engage with Buddha’s teachings more deeply. 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.

Program Structure

Students sign up to complete all the books in the program and undertake to attend every class, to learn the material, and to take tests at various intervals throughout the study of each book.

Class Structure

Prior to class, students study an assigned portion of the text, usually a few pages long, and memorize the essential points. The class begins with chanted prayers and a guided meditation. The teacher then reads the assigned portion from the book while giving commentary to the text. Afterwards the students divide into pairs to discuss the section. The teacher and students then conclude with suggestions for what to meditate on in the next class and how to practice during the week.

Commitments

Commitments include:

Attending all classes and taking part in class discussions

Attending TTP retreats

Attending a puja once a week

Taking an exam at the conclusion of either the end of a section of the book or the entire book

If, for a suitable reason, a student is not able to attend the class in person, he or she is expected to listen to the class recording and complete a study summary that is to be given to the teacher.

Teacher

Gen Kelsang Chöma

Gen Kelsang Chöma is a senior Teacher and Buddhist nun with the New Kadampa Tradition of Modern Buddhism. She has studied extensively on the Teacher Training Program for over 30 years and is qualified to teach both Sutra and Tantra. She is the Resident Teacher at Kadampa Meditation Center San Francisco and is invited to teach nationally. People enjoy her teachings for their clarity and warmth.

Essence of Vajrayana

Sunday 4:30-7:00pm

Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche explains with clarity and precision how we can practice the sublime meditations of Heruka body mandala, and thereby gradually transform our ordinary world and experiences into those of a Buddha, a fully enlightened being. He follows this with definitive instructions on the completion stage practices that can lead directly to the supreme bliss of full enlightenment in this very life. This is a treasury of practical instructions for those seriously interested in following the Tantric path.

The program comprises the following twelve subjects, based on Buddha's Sutra and Tantra teachings and the corresponding commentaries by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche:

1. The Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, based on the commentary Joyful Path of Good Fortune

2. Training the Mind, based on the commentaries Universal Compassion and The New Eight Steps to Happiness

3. The Heart Sutra, based on the commentary The New Heart of Wisdom

4. Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life, based on the commentary Meaningful to Behold

5. Types of Mind, based on the commentary How to Understand the Mind

6. Guide to the Middle Way, based on the commentary Ocean of Nectar

7. Vajrayana Mahamudra, based on the commentary Clear Light of Bliss

8. The Bodhisattva’s Moral Discipline, based on the commentary The Bodhisattva Vow

9. Offering to the Spiritual Guide, based on the commentaries Great Treasury of Merit and Mahamudra Tantra

10. Vajrayogini Tantra, based on the commentary New Guide to Dakini Land

11. Grounds and Paths of Secret Mantra, based on the commentary Tantric Grounds and Paths

12. The Practice of Heruka Body Mandala, based on the commentary Essence of Vajrayana

Please contact epc@meditateinsanfrancisco.org if you are interested in the joining Teacher Training Program or if you have questions. The cost is $100/month and includes other benefits such as admission to General Program classes and some workshops and retreats.

If everyone were to practice cherishing others, many of the major problems of the world would be solved in a few years.

— Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche