In This Issue
Chinese Artist Receives Grant to Study in Japan: Han Weimeng goes to Tokyo.
Women in Buddhism: Two KF grants support projects for women Buddhists.
Focus Reentry: Program assists prisoners with transition from prison.
The banner image is a detail of a painting by Han Weimeng
"If we sincerely want to carry on the traditions of Buddhism in the East, and if we are talking about establishing Buddhism in the West, we need to think ahead to the next generation. This means creating lasting structures that foster practice and make the Dharma available to anyone who is interested… The whole purpose of Khyentse Foundation is to create a system of support for the continuing study and practice of the Dharma."
—Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Help us build Khyentse Foundation's funding base so that we can continue to support Buddhists around the world.
Did you know?
When you become a monthly donor, every dollar you donate is matched by the Patrons of Manjushri.
A sample of the 2015 grantees:
A Vietnamese monk studying at the Mindrolling Shedra in Dehradun
A Taiwanese student continuing a PhD with a thesis based on the Tathagatagarbha sutras and shastras
A German student learning Tibetan at Thosamling Nunnery
A Bangladeshi monk completing a BA at the Buddhist and Pāli University of Homagama, Sri Lanka
A Swedish nurse studying translation
A Chinese PhD candidate studying in England
A Few Words from Our Grantees
“We wish to express our gratitude for your support, which has helped us to enable many people in their effort to find a better way. Your funding has helped our organization to reach higher plateaus in serving the community and in helping others in their quest to find enlightenment, inner peace and peace with the community.”
— Jerry Frangas, Focus Reentry Executive Director
“The aim of Japanese copying is pure. From the beginning, the way of their methods has shown a careful, rigorous, almost like a scientific style of copying. In the Japanese copying tradition, they tend to not mix with any personal style in the copying works, but to focus on the representation of the murals’ texture so as to produce works that are more natural and close to the original murals.”
— Han Weimeng
How Khyentse Foundation Gives
Khyentse Foundation supports individuals and institutions engaged in the practice and study of Buddhism. In 2015, KF gave 45 individual grants and scholarships to applicants from around the world, in addition to numerous Ashoka grants and translation studies scholarships. Recipients are people from all walks of life who are interested in any tradition of Buddhism—monks, nuns, stay-at-home-moms, nurses, addiction counselors, students, accountants, professors, tennis pros. The foundation encourages applicants to think creatively about how the Dharma can remain a vital tradition for generations to come. Read about the different kinds of grants and scholarships available here.
Applications are accepted during one-month periods each year:
Individual Practice Grants and Buddhist Studies Scholarships
December 15, 2015-January 15, 2016; June 15-July 15, 2016
January 15-February 15, 2016; July 15-August 15, 2016
Translation Studies Scholarships
February 15-March 15, 2016 (one application period)
Chinese Artist Studies Restoration
Arts in Japan
(Tokyo, Japan)—Han Weimeng received an Ashoka grant for the 2014-2015 academic year at the Tokyo University of Arts. The grant is enabling him to complete a Master of Arts course in traditional Japanese painting. His goals are to acquire traditional copying techniques of Japanese murals and to enhance Buddhist art preservation skills.
Weimeng was educated at the Fine Art Institute of Dunhuang Academy in China, where he studied Buddhist mural copying art. He chose to go to Japan to learn new methods to apply in his field. He also wanted to increase his exposure to new art forms to enhance his personal expression, using art as part of his Buddhist practice. He is studying Nihonga, a classic Japanese painting technique that focuses on the trans-dimensional, timeless aspect of representation using natural materials such as ground rock containing a crystalline substance, as well as azurite, malachite, and cinnabar.
Weimeng wants to apply his new skills at the Magao Grotto caves in Dunhuang China...
Two Grants Support Education and Inspiration for Buddhist Women
In many countries, Buddhist women don’t have the same opportunities for education, study, and formal practice that men do. Khyentse Foundation works with groups and individuals to bring these opportunities to women of all ages and in many countries. Two projects in particular, the Pal Ewam Namgon Nunnery School and the Mongolian Buddhist Women’s Conference, show the breadth and impact of KF’s support in 2015.
A School for Nuns
The Pal Ewam Namgon Nunnery School was established in 2011 to provide free Buddhist and secular modern education to underprivileged or orphaned girls in the remote Himalayan region of Mustang, a district of Nepal. Currently the school is home to 39 nuns from around Nepal. KF contributes to the education of these young women by funding the salaries of several of the school’s teachers.
“In this modern age, education is important. In Nepal, due to gender differences, many daughters were deprived of education,” said principal Lekshey Tendar. “Considering these past circumstances, we are motivating nuns [by providing] quality education in pleasant environments.”
In addition to offering modern education, the school is helping to restore the nunnery tradition by keeping Buddhism alive in harmony with more traditional schooling. In 2016, the school plans to take the nuns on a pilgrimage to Buddhist historical sites to inspire their learning and practice.
“Our goal is to awaken a consciousness in the heart of the nuns so they will be a responsible part of the larger community and uplift all humanity through prayers and blessings,” said Tendar.
Recognizing the Fortitude of the
Buddhist Women of Mongolia
The goal of the July, 2015 Mongolian Buddhist Women’s Conference was to bring together 300 Mongolian Buddhist women who are active in their local communities, both rural and urban, to share their experiences, aspirations, and challenges, to learn from each other, and to establish common goals and cooperation.
“Women constitute the majority of the Mongolian population and the majority of those who attend Buddhist teachings and engage in Buddhist practices, complete university degrees, teach in schools, and are active in social work,” said Vesna Wallace, conference organizer and professor of Religious Studies at University of California Santa Barbara. “However, their contribution to society has not received adequate attention.”
Attendees included lay and ordained women, Buddhist scholars, nuns who study in India, women representing Buddhist centers, female Dharma teachers, western women scholars, and some prominent Mongolia lamas. A Khyentse Foundation grant helped to cover travel assistance and stipends to women from rural areas who otherwise might not have been able to attend, as well as meals and rental of the conference space.
Focus Reentry Assists Prisoners with
Transition from Prison
(Boulder, Colorado)—Focus Reentry is a mentoring program founded on Buddhist principles that offers free counseling and help in securing resources to meet the immediate needs of offenders who are reentering society. Khyentse Foundation has been supporting Focus Reentry since 2012. A 2014-2015 KF grant helped the organization to serve people in two capacities: Human Needs and Mentor Support.
In 2014-15, Focus provided 8 clients with Human Needs support and connected 27 new clients with mentors (Mentor Support) to aid their reentry. Of the total of 35 clients paired with a mentor, 5 (a little over 14%) went back to jail during this period. According to a report by the Pew Center, 43.3% percent of prisoners incarcerated in America in 2011 were arrested and jailed again within 5 years of their release.
Human Needs support helps people to secure basic resources immediately after being released from jail. These clients are referred to Focus by the jail with little notice; Focus does not turn any referral away. Human Needs connects clients with either a mentor or the program director, who helps them secure the resources to meet their immediate needs, with the hope of keeping them stable and building a strong relationship with a mentor on the outside.
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