Ignorance is the cause of suffering

The goal of the Rime Shedra is to make accessible the vast treasures of Buddhist wisdom to those who wish to progress further in their understanding of the profound principles presented in these advanced Buddhist texts. The understanding of the ultimate nature of reality is the key to liberation. For practitioners this program provides an opportunity to develop a more sophisticated understanding of the nature of reality.  For scholars it provides an opportunity to expand their understanding of Buddhism by cultivating an experiential understanding. The program is based upon the traditional Shedra, or monastic college, curriculum which is the cornerstone of Buddhist education in all of the schools of Tibetan Buddhism.

Reading the Words of the Buddha

In this course we will study excerpts from the following major mahayana sutras:

  • Prajnaparamita Sutras – The presentation of the emptiness of the second turning
  • The Lotus Sutra – The presentation of ekayana, one path, as opposed to multiple separate paths of shravaka, etc., and of the skillful means of the Buddha
  • Questions of Kashyapa – A core presentation of the middle way, including reference to the 500 arhats who were shocked by this teaching
  • Teachings of Vimalakirti – Completely outrageous presentation of the inconceivability of the dharma
  • The Lankavatara Sutra – The presentation of mind only and alayavijnana
  • Samdhinirmocana Sutra – The presentation of the three natures
  • Tathagatagarbha Sutra –  The main presentation of buddha nature
  • Dialogue with Queen Srimaladevi – A more fully developed version of buddha nature
  • The Aspiration of Samantabhadra – The conclusion of the immense Avatamsaka Sutra, one of the most repeated sutras of the Tibetan tradition


Core Materials

  1. Sourcebook

Supplemental Materials

  1. Supplementary Readings, Part 1
  2. Supplementary Readings, Part 2

Class Recordings

  1. September 25, 2012
  2. October 2, 2012
  3. October 9, 2012
  4. October 16, 2012
  5. November 6, 2012
  6. November 13, 2012
  7. November 27, 2012
  8. December 4, 2012
  9. December 11, 2012
  10. January 8, 2013
  11. January 15, 2013