Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Geshe Kelsang Wangmo - Graduation Day




For the Guinness World Record Book: Ven. Kelsang Wangmo is First Woman to Receive Geshe diploma (conferred by Tibetan Buddhist institution).



His Holiness the Dalai Lama authorized the Institute for Buddhist Dialectical Studies (IBD) to award Rime Geshe degrees in 2009.


The first ceremony to confer the degree took place 27 April 2011 at The College for Higher Tibetan Studies (a newer branch college of IBD with a large campus located in Sarah village, Dharamsala township, Kangra Valley, Himachal Pradesh, India).



Our teacher, Ven. Kelsang Wangmo, and her classmates who completed the requirements for the degree in 2010, were the first to receive this Geshe degree.

 
The degree is entitled Rime Geshe [i.e., Non-Sectarian Geshe] because the curriculum includes study with Nyingma, Sakya and Kagyu masters of their respective presentations  of philosophy.  In addition to the normal Geshe curriculum study of the Five Great Canonical Texts, Geshe Wangmo and her classmates  studied tantra for two years at IBD.  Those who receive the Rime Geshe have completed exhaustive annual examinations comparable to those now  administered at the three great Geluk monastic universities in south India, and submitted Tibetan dissertations. 

IBD and The College for Higher Tibetan Studies conferred degrees upon students of all their programs at the graduation.  IBD presented diplomas for Masters of Buddhist Philosophy to the class members (including a nun from Taiwan) who had successfully completed the curriculum through the Madhyamika course:



For those of you in Dharamsala, we will be arranging a 'tea party' to afford you the traditional opportunity to celebrate/pay respects/offer khata scarfs in the near future. Some of us were able to attend the graduation:







In the 1990's, IBD began teaching the Geshe curriculum to a class of nuns from Jamyang Chosling Nunnery, which caters to nuns from Himalyan regions outside of Tibet (primarily located in modern India). This was one of the earliest programs to teach the advanced Buddhist philosophy to nuns in India. For many long years, the nun students lived in shacks without basic amenities. A few of those pioneering nuns are celebrating with Geshe Wangmo! A few years ago, a modern nunnery was inaugurated in the Kangra Valley with its own teachers and geshe program and it has attracted nuns from Nepal and the west.

More photos on earlier post and on flickr.

17 comments:

Ayya Tathaaloka said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ayya Tathaaloka said...

from the Blessed One ~

the immaculate moon

Just as the immaculate moon, gliding through the realm of the sky
Shines more brightly in its spendor, than all the host of the world's stars;
So too does the faithful person, the one accomplished in virtue,
Shine more brightly by her giving, than all the selfish of this world.

-- The Buddha, to Sumana (the Raja's daughter), AN 5.31

-----
This is wonderful news. My warm congratulations.

Tathaaloka Bhikkhuni, with metta

Jeffrey Kotyk said...

Congrats Geshe Kelsang Wangmo!

Tenzin Dechen Rochard said...

Dearest Geshe Kelsang Wangmo-la - many congratulations on receiving the Rime Geshe degree - that is fantastic news!! And it is excellent that you are presenting such a well structured teaching programme for Westerners in Dharamsala!! Yes - may all this ripen in the supreme fruit of the enlightenment of all beings!! With love, Tenzin Dechen xx

Anonymous said...

Wonderful, congratulations Geshela

Anonymous said...

Impressive. What an accomplishment !

Owllife said...

There really is something incredibly admirable about Kalsang Wangmo. To have worked as hard and as long, and trod the difficult path through to the end... I stand respectfully and bow my head to you.

Efi & Eti Paz said...

Dear Geshe-Le,
Me and Eti want to congratulate you for the Geshe title and inauguration - we know you deserve it and we are sure you will use it for the benefit of all (at least most) sentient beings, including us in Israel.

Efi & Eti Paz

Rinchen Chodron said...

Thank you so much for representing women in Buddhism! Congratulations on your Geshe degree. I look forward to learning more.

gyalpo said...

Hello Geshe Wango la...you may not know me, but I stayed at Dharamsala for a month way back in 2008, when I came to Jamyang Choling and I came to know about you. Today I am really happy that you have attained the Geshe Degree which is a feat for every Buddhist women to look upto...Congrates :)

Nima said...

Congrats Geshe Kelsang Wangmo!
As I have GeShe Lharam digree, I know how difficult to get that. Next step is help people. All the best.

Nima said...

Congrats Geshe Kelsang Wangmo!
As I have GeShe Lharam digree, I know how difficult to get that. Next step is help people. All the best.

Nima said...

Congrats Geshe Kelsang Wangmo!
As I have GeShe Lharam digree, I know how difficult to get that. Next step is help people. All the best.

Nima said...

Congrats Geshe Kelsang Wangmo!
As I have GeShe Lharam digree, I know how difficult to get that. Next step is help people. All the best.

Sippy Singh said...

Dear Geshe Wangmo, I attended your talk in Leh two weeks ago (was the only turbaned guy in the crowd). I had some follow up questions: what is the best way to reach you?

nordron said...

Dear Singh,

Please email me you contact information to me (this blog's administrator) at choslags-ibd@yahoo.com. Then I will forward your email address or other contact information to Geshe Wangmo.

Anonymous said...

Hii dear.......Congratulation on your Geshe Ceremony,,,,,It is much awaited news and so so nice to hear through my ears....Nyima Negi Varanasi...