Get Our Extension

Tibetan Nuns Project

From Wikipedia, in a visual modern way
Tibetan Nuns Project
Founded1991[1]
TypeNonprofit organization
Location
Websitehttp://tnp.org/

The Tibetan Nuns Project, founded in 1987, is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating and supporting Buddhist female monastics in India from all Tibetan Buddhist lineages. It helps nuns who want to study and advance their ordination.[2] The Tibetan Nuns Project's mission is to educate and empower Tibetan Buddhist nuns as teachers and leaders, as well as to establish, strengthen, and support educational institutions in order to preserve Tibetan religion and culture. In India, the organization supports seven nunneries and over 800 nuns.

History

Gompas (Buddhist convents) have historically been well established in Tibet, certainly from the twelfth century and with traditions reaching back as far as the eighth century. Before the Chinese invasion in 1949, there were at least 818 nunneries and nearly 28,000 nuns living in Tibet. Traditional education in the nunneries included reading, writing, and lessons in ancient scriptures and prayers taught by the senior nuns or lamas from monasteries. Traditional activities for the nuns included performance of rituals requested by the lay community and crafts such as embroidery and sewing. Administrative and maintenance tasks were rotated so that all nuns gained experience in running the nunnery.

In the late 1980s and in the 1990s, due to the repressive conditions in Tibet, a large number of Tibetan Buddhist nuns escaped from Tibet and joined the refugee communities in India and Nepal. Ranging in age from pre-teen to mid-eighties, these nuns came from all parts of Tibet and from many different backgrounds. Upon arrival in India, many nuns were suffering severely from the stresses of their long, arduous and often dangerous journeys of escape. Some had faced torture and imprisonment at the hands of the Chinese authorities in Tibet and were enduring immense physical and emotional pain. In most cases, the nuns arrived without money or possessions. The majority of nuns were illiterate.

In the mid 80s, under the auspices of the Department of Religion and Culture of the 14th Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Women's Association, the Tibetan Nuns Project (TNP) was established to assist the refugee nuns from Tibet as well as to improve the overall status and level of ordained Tibetan women. The main objectives of the project are to provide basic care for these women, and educate them in traditional values and philosophy, as well as the essential skills and knowledge needed to function in the modern world. The Tibetan Nuns Project also works to establish a role for ordained women as teachers and leaders comparable to that of monks.

The Tibetan Nuns Project works to:

  • Contribute to the preservation of Tibetan cultural and religious traditions.
  • Improve the health and living conditions of Tibetan nuns in exile.
  • Provide traditional as well as modern education for Tibetan women.
  • Provide highly educated female teachers to the Tibetan Buddhist community and the world at large.
  • Help with self-sufficiency projects in the nunneries.

Rinchen Khandro Choegyal coordinates the Tibetan Nuns Project. In 1996, the Tibetan Nuns Project was responsible for around 400 nuns in Dharamsala, their numbers are steadily increasing, with more nuns coming from Tibet, Ladakh, and other parts of India.[3]

Discover more about History related topics

Gompa

Gompa

A Gompa or Gönpa, also known as ling, is a Buddhist ecclesiastical fortification of learning, lineage and sādhanā that may be understood as a conflation of a fortification, a vihara and a university associated with Tibetan Buddhism and thus common in historical Tibetan regions including parts of China, India, Nepal, and Bhutan. Bhutanese dzong architecture is a subset of traditional gompa design.

Tibet

Tibet

Tibet is a region in East Asia, covering much of the Tibetan Plateau and spanning about 2,500,000 km2 (970,000 sq mi). It is the traditional homeland of the Tibetan people. Also resident on the plateau are some other ethnic groups such as Monpa, Tamang, Qiang, Sherpa and Lhoba peoples and now also considerable numbers of Han Chinese and Hui settlers. Since 1951, the entire plateau has been under the administration of the People's Republic of China, a major portion in the Tibet Autonomous Region, and other portions in the Qinghai and Sichuan provinces.

Annexation of Tibet by the People's Republic of China

Annexation of Tibet by the People's Republic of China

Tibet came under the control of People's Republic of China (PRC) after the Government of Tibet signed the Seventeen Point Agreement which the 14th Dalai Lama ratified on 24 October 1951, but later repudiated on the grounds that he rendered his approval for the agreement while under duress. This occurred after attempts by the Tibetan Government to gain international recognition, efforts to modernize its military, negotiations between the Government of Tibet and the PRC, and a military conflict in the Chamdo area of western Kham in October 1950. The series of events came to be called the "Peaceful Liberation of Tibet" by the Chinese government, and the "Chinese invasion of Tibet" by the Central Tibetan Administration and the Tibetan diaspora.

India

India

India, officially the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by area, the second-most populous country, and the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, and the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west; China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north; and Bangladesh and Myanmar to the east. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives; its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand, Myanmar, and Indonesia. The nation's capital city is New Delhi.

Nepal

Nepal

Nepal, formerly the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked country in South Asia. It is mainly situated in the Himalayas, but also includes parts of the Indo-Gangetic Plain, bordering the Tibet Autonomous Region of China to the north, and India in the south, east, and west, while it is narrowly separated from Bangladesh by the Siliguri Corridor, and from Bhutan by the Indian state of Sikkim. Nepal has a diverse geography, including fertile plains, subalpine forested hills, and eight of the world's ten tallest mountains, including Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth. Nepal is a multi-ethnic, multi-lingual, multi-religious and multi-cultural state, with Nepali as the official language. Kathmandu is the nation's capital and the largest city.

14th Dalai Lama

14th Dalai Lama

The 14th Dalai Lama, known as Gyalwa Rinpoche to the Tibetan people, is the current Dalai Lama. He is the highest spiritual leader and former head of state of Tibet. He was born on 6 July 1935, or in the Tibetan calendar, in the Wood-Pig Year, 5th month, 5th day. He is considered a living Bodhisattva, specifically, an emanation of Avalokiteśvara in Sanskrit and Chenrezig in Tibetan. He is also the leader and a monk of the Gelug school, the newest school of Tibetan Buddhism, formally headed by the Ganden Tripa. The central government of Tibet, the Ganden Phodrang, invested the Dalai Lama with temporal duties until his exile in 1959.

Tibetan Women's Association

Tibetan Women's Association

The Tibetan Women's Association (TWA) is a women's association based in McLeodGanj, Dharamshala, India. The group was officially formed on 10 September 1984 in India, by Rinchen Khando Choegyal, a former Tibetan Youth Congress activist, although the group itself claims that a precursor was created in Tibet during the 1959 Tibetan Rebellion. Stephanie Roemer traces the organization back to the Lhasa Patriotic Woman's Association, founded in 1953 by the People's Liberation Army, which introduced the idea of women participating in politics, which was "radical" to Tibet.

Programs

The Tibetan Nuns Project supports 7 nunneries in northern India as well as some nuns living on their own.

The largest of these nunneries is Dolma Ling Nunnery and Institute which was built and is fully supported by the Tibetan Nuns Project. It is the first institute dedicated specifically to higher education for Tibetan Buddhist nuns. It is open to nuns from all traditions. Upon graduation from a 19-year program, the nuns will be thoroughly trained in their Buddhist tradition and will be eligible to receive a Geshe degree (Geshema for women), equivalent to a Ph.D. in Tibetan Buddhism.

Shugsep Nunnery, a Nyingma nunnery, was re-established in India and is fully supported by the Tibetan Nuns Project. The nunnery traces its lineage back to some of the greatest female teachers in Tibetan Buddhism. Upon completion of a nine-year academic program, nuns receive a lopon degree (equivalent to a M.A.) and may then do research towards obtaining a khenpo degree (khenmo degree work women, equivalent to a Ph.D.). These nuns will then be able to give the full Nyingma teachings to other monastics.

Gaden Choeling Nunnery, a Gelug institution, is the oldest Dharamsala nunnery.

Karma Drubgyu Thargay Ling or Tilokpur Nunnery, a Kagyu institution, provides scriptural and ritual training and has a basic study program.

Sherab Choeling in the Spiti Valley has 45 resident nuns who have begun a rigorous course of study, the first of its kind for women of that region.

Sakya College for Nuns in Mundawala near Dehradun offers the full course of studies followed by the monks of Sakya College.

Discover more about Programs related topics

Geshe

Geshe

Geshe or geshema is a Tibetan Buddhist academic degree for monks and nuns. The degree is emphasized primarily by the Gelug lineage, but is also awarded in the Sakya and Bön traditions. The equivalent geshema degree is awarded to women.

Nyingma

Nyingma

Nyingma is the oldest of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism. It is also often referred to as Ngangyur, "order of the ancient translations". The Nyingma school is founded on the first lineages and translations of Buddhist scriptures from Sanskrit into Tibetan in the eighth century, during the reign of King Trisong Detsen.

Lopon

Lopon

Lopon is a spiritual degree given in Tibetan Buddhism equal to M. A.

Khenpo

Khenpo

The term khenpo, or khenmo is a degree for higher Buddhist studies given in Tibetan Buddhism. In the Nyingma, Kagyu, and Sakya traditions, the title is awarded usually after a period of 13 years of intensive study after secondary school. It may roughly translate to either a bachelor's degree, or nowadays more likely to a terminal degree in Buddhist Studies equivalent to a PhD or MPhil. The degree is awarded to students who can publicly defend their erudition and mastery in at least five subjects of Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, namely Prajñāpāramitā, Madhyamaka, Pramāṇa, Abhidharma, and Vinaya. After successfully passing their examination they are entitled to serve as teachers of Buddhism.

Gaden Choeling Nunnery

Gaden Choeling Nunnery

Ganden Choeling Nunnery or Geden Chöling is a Tibetan Buddhist vihara for Buddhist nuns in Dharamshala, India. It is near the monastery in which the 14th Dalai Lama resides.

Gelug

Gelug

The Gelug is the newest of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism. It was founded by Je Tsongkhapa (1357–1419), a Tibetan philosopher, tantric yogi and lama and further expanded and developed by his disciples.

Kagyu

Kagyu

The Kagyu school, also transliterated as Kagyü, or Kagyud, which translates to "Oral Lineage" or "Whispered Transmission" school, is one of the main schools of Tibetan Buddhism. The Kagyu lineages trace themselves back to the 11th century Indian Mahasiddhas Naropa, Maitripa and the yogini Niguma, via their student Marpa Lotsawa (1012–1097), who brought their teachings to Tibet. Marpa's student Milarepa was also an influential poet and teacher.

Dehradun

Dehradun

Dehradun is the capital and the most populous city of the Indian state of Uttarakhand. It is the administrative headquarters of the eponymous district and is governed by the Dehradun Municipal Corporation, with the Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly holding its winter sessions in the city as its winter capital. Part of the Garhwal region, and housing the headquarters of its Divisional Commissioner. Dehradun is one of the "Counter Magnets" of the National Capital Region (NCR) being developed as an alternative center of growth to help ease the migration and population explosion in the Delhi metropolitan area and to establish a smart city in the Himalayas. It is the third largest city in the Himalayas after Kathmandu and Srinagar.

Funding

Donations

The Project is primarily funded by generous donations from individuals and organisations. Early funding came from the Heinrich Böll Foundation of Germany, the Norwegian Tibet Committee Women's Group and the Norwegian organisations Fokus and Norad, the Swedish foundation Soir-IM, the American Himalayan Foundation, Rigpa Foundation of London, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Hershey Family Foundation, and the Betsy Gordon Foundation.

Sponsorships

In 1998, the Tibetan Nuns Project created a sponsorship program whereby international donors can sponsor a nun through monthly or yearly contributions. The sponsorships provide food, shelter, medical care, and education to the nuns. Sponsors receive a photo and biography and contact information for the nun(s) that they sponsor. The minimum cost for annual sponsorship is $360 USD.

Sales

The Tibetan Nuns Project has an online store which sells handmade traditional Buddhist items made by the nuns in India such as malas, prayer flags, kataks, bags, and Tibetan door curtains. Additional funding is provided by the sale of a printed calendar with photographs.

Discover more about Funding related topics

Heinrich Böll Foundation

Heinrich Böll Foundation

The Heinrich Böll Foundation is a German, legally independent political foundation. Affiliated with the German Green Party, it was founded in 1997 when three predecessors merged. The foundation was named after German writer Heinrich Böll (1917–1985).

American Himalayan Foundation

American Himalayan Foundation

The American Himalayan Foundation (AHF) is a non-profit organization in the United States that helps Tibetans, Sherpas, and Nepalis living throughout the Himalayas. AHF builds schools, plants trees, trains doctors, funds hospitals, takes care of children and the elderly, and restores sacred sites. The San Francisco-based organization also helps Tibetans rebuild and maintain their culture both in exile and inside Tibet.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), a merging of the William H. Gates Foundation and the Gates Learning Foundation, is an American private foundation founded by Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates. Based in Seattle, Washington, it was launched in 2000 and is reported as of 2020 to be the second largest charitable foundation in the world, holding $49.8 billion in assets. On his 43rd birthday, Bill Gates gave the foundation $1 billion. The primary stated goals of the foundation are to enhance healthcare and reduce extreme poverty across the world, and to expand educational opportunities and access to information technology in the U.S. Key individuals of the foundation include Bill Gates, Melinda French Gates, Warren Buffett, chief executive officer Mark Suzman, and Michael Larson.

Khata

Khata

A khata or khatag is a traditional ceremonial scarf in Tibetan Buddhism and in tengerism. It originated in Tibetan culture and is common in cultures and countries where Tibetan Buddhism is practiced or has strong influence.

Calendar

Calendar

A calendar is a system of organizing days. This is done by giving names to periods of time, typically days, weeks, months and years. A date is the designation of a single, specific day within such a system. A calendar is also a physical record of such a system. A calendar can also mean a list of planned events, such as a court calendar or a partly or fully chronological list of documents, such as a calendar of wills.

Source: "Tibetan Nuns Project", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, November 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tibetan_Nuns_Project.

Enjoying Wikiz?

Enjoying Wikiz?

Get our FREE extension now!

References
  1. ^ "Tibetan nuns thrive in exile". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. August 29, 2005. Retrieved 2010-08-30.
  2. ^ writer, RITA ANNAN-BRADY, staff. "North Caldwell native treks to northern India to see Dalai Lama". New Jersey Hills. Retrieved 2022-10-19.
  3. ^ Bertrand Odelys, Dharamsala, Chroniques tibétaines, Albin Michel, 2003, ISBN 2226142592, 9782226142597, p 92-104
External links

The content of this page is based on the Wikipedia article written by contributors..
The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike Licence & the media files are available under their respective licenses; additional terms may apply.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use & Privacy Policy.
Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization & is not affiliated to WikiZ.com.