Foundation Programme

Thursdays 7pm to 9pm

The Foundation Programme (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 meditation classes but feel you want to go a bit deeper with your study and practice – the systematic study of an essential Buddhist text on FP may be a perfect next step for you.

From September 2024, FP will study The New Eight Steps to Happiness: Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso’s inspiring commentary to one of Buddhism’s best-loved teachings, Eight Verses of Training the Mind. This poem, composed by Geshe Langri Tangpa, has inspired generations of Buddhist practitioners for almost a thousand years.

It shows how we can transform all life’s difficulties into valuable spiritual insights, by revealing practical ways we can use this timeless wisdom to find meaning and lasting happiness in our busy modern life.

To apply to join foundation programme please email fp@meditationinleeds.org for more info. Premium membership required, fee: £35 per month.

You can also attend two free taster sessions before enroling, to see if the programme is for you.

Gen Kelsang Dornying teaching

About the Teacher

The programme is taught by Gen Kelsang Dornying. He has taught Kadampa Buddhism worldwide for over 20 years. With his inspiring and light-hearted approach, Gen Dornying makes Buddha’s teachings clear, accessible, and applicable to modern life.

man and woman meditating and smiling

Benefits of the Programme

– Deepen your personal insights into Dharma (Buddha’s teachings)
– Give structure to your meditation practice and study of Buddhism
– Learn from Gen Dornying’s practical and profound experience
– Enjoy the help and support of like-minded spiritual friends
– Cultivate a state of mind that is calm, clear and positive all the time
– Develop and realise the true limitless potential of your own mind

KMC Leeds meditation hall

What happens in a class?

We ask that you commit for about three to six months initially, to give the programme a good try. Of course you can quit at any time. It takes 6 months to 2+ years to complete a book, depending on how big the book is, because we normally cover 3 to 4 pages per class. These really are in-depth study programmes! When we finish one book, we begin to study another one.

Many students have been in these programmes for many years because Buddha’s teachings (Dharma) are very extensive and it takes time for our minds to really change. Considering that the ultimate intention is to attain enlightenment, you need to decide how far you wish to go. KMC Leeds strives to offer the conditions to support you in your study and practice of Dharma, at whichever level is most comfortable for you.

Group of people discussing meditation

What are the commitments?

– Obtain a copy of the text to be studied
– Prepare before each class by studying the text
– Make a sincere effort to attend every class
– Put effort into memorising the essential points
– Attend weekly classes for at least three months

all tharpa books displayed in reading order

Books and subjects studied on the programme

The Foundation Programme systematically studies six texts by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche. These are:

  • Joyful Path of Good Fortune, an explanation of the stages of the path to enlightenment (lamrim)
  • Eight Steps to Happiness, a commentary to the poem Eight Verses of Training the Mind
  • The New Heart of Wisdom, a commentary to the Heart Sutra
  • How to Understand the Mind, an explanation of the types of mind
  • 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

KMC Leeds is currently studying Joyful Path of Good Fortune, and next we will study Eight Steps to Happiness.

Interested in joining Foundation Programme?

Email fp@meditationinleeds.org

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