Study At Drepung Monastery

The following article is from the Winter, 1992 issue of the Snow Lion Newsletter and is for historical reference only. You can see this in context of the original newsletter here.

Gomang College of Drepung Monastic University in south India now provides a special opportunity for Western monks to undertake traditional studies in Buddhist philosophy leading to the degree of geshe.

In accordance with the advice from the Dalai Lama (see Dreloma XVIII-XIX), a separate hostel or khatigtsen has been established with the particular needs of Westerners in mind. It is called Thosam Khangtsen.

The aims of Thosam Khangtsen are to provide facilities for Western monks to become geshes, translators and teachers, and thus establish and continue the tradition of Gelugpa monasticism and scholarship in Western countries. It also hopes to provide accomodation and library services to visiting lay scholars.

Western monks at Drepung, like other monks, will be expected to attend all classes and debates, but exemption from pujas and ceremonies would be granted to those who wish to undertake a more accelerated course of studies and complete the course in ten or twelve years.

Among the various colleges of Sera, Gaden and Drepung, Gomang college is unique in studying the textbook literature composed by The Omniscient Jamyang Shedpa. For this reason the college has strong historical ties with monks from other countries such as Mongolia and Siberia who have chosen primarily to enter Gomang.

The first floor of a building to accomodate seven monks in spacious single rooms is now under construction. However, further funds are needed to complete the project. The environment for learning Tibetan language and studying philosophy at Gomang is ideal, with many highly qualified geshes who will give special attention to Western students. The cost of living is very low and the climate on the Deccan plateau at 500 m above sea level is pleasant all year round.

Those wishing Co know more about Thosam Khangtsen and procedures for obtaining necessary visas, permits, etc. should write to Australian monk Lobsang Tsultrim at: Thosam Khangtsen, Drepung-Gomang L.C. No. 2, P.O. Tibetan Colony, Mund-god, Distt. U.K. 581411, Karnata-ka State, India.

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