Communiques

Buddhist Education

Rinpoche has consistently urged Khyentse Foundation to develop programs that will establish academically respected elementary and high schools with Buddhist-based curricula. Accordingly, KF continues to explore new educational models, based on Buddhist principles of compassion and nonviolence, coupled with academic excellence, to invigorate and inspire the next generation. Here are a few of the projects supported by the Foundation.

Deer Park Institute, Bir, India

A center for the study of classical Indian wisdom traditions based on the spirit of Nalanda, the great Buddhist university of ancient India, in which all traditions of Buddhism were studied and practiced, along with other schools of classical Indian philosophy, arts, and sciences. Deer Park Institute is open to lay students from India and all over the world.

Lhomon Education Initiative, Bhutan

An initiative to address the country’s education needs in the 21st century, aimed at increasing Gross National Happiness. The project involves the development of Buddhist education units based on secular themes, teacher training, and fostering a community of educators with shared goals. Rinpoche offered his monastery in Dewathang, East Bhutan, as a laboratory, and 20 of his young monks are being trained using the newly developed curricula and educational approach. It is hoped that this model, if successful, can be used in other parts of Bhutan, and even in other countries.

Santi Sena Buddhist Primary Schools, Cambodia

Six pilot Buddhist primary schools were set up in Svay Rieng province, one of the poorest areas of Cambodia, at the initiation of Ven. Dr. Nhem Kim Teng, founder and spiritual director of Santi Sena (Peace Army), to directly address the degeneration of the Buddhadharma among the ordained sangha and the lay community in post-conflict Cambodia. These pilot schools have inspired participation and support from the local community, educators, Buddhist leaders, and government departments. Hopefully, these schools will become models for others across the country.