Rumtek Dharma Chakra Center
Founder and Spiritual Leads H.H. the 16th Gyalwang Karmapa/Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche and Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche
Address: Dharma Chakra Centre, P.O. Rumtek Monastery, East Sikkim, India 737-135
Karma Shri Nalanda Institute for Higher Buddhist Studies
Karma Shri Nalanda Institute (KSNI) was inaugurated in 1981 as a branch of Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre, the main seat-in-exile of H.H. the XVIth Karmapa. KSNI was founded to preserve and propagate the noble teachings of Lord Buddha and, in particular, the Kagyu tradition of Mahayana Buddhism, to help spread the nectar of dharma throughout the world. Here, serious students are afforded the opportunity to train under the most experienced teachers in the living Buddhist tradition of Tibet: the sutras, tantras, and meditation. Students must have an eighth-grade level or equivalent education for admission to the shedra. Once admitted, they are required to take a two-year preliminary course of study before they can enroll in the university-level courses.
Since 1987, while maintaining its independent administration, the institute has been formally affiliated with Sampurnanand Sanskrit University of Varanasi, India, becoming an officially accredited institution. This enables Nalanda students to have certified qualifications acceptable to other universities and programs.
Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche and Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche are the principal teachers at Nalanda Institute.
Karma Jamyang Khang Primary School
Before he established the Karma Shri Nalanda Institute (KSNI), the Karmapa founded the Karma Jamyang Khang Primary School in 1978 as a preparatory school where students would begin their rigorous education as a foundation for later teaching. Since KSNI was founded, Karma Jamyang Khang serves solely to educate young members of the monks’ community in Tibetan grammar and poetry, English, the ritual arts, and instruction in Buddhist texts and sadhanas. This program of study continues for many years, and culminates with intensive training in an area of ritual practice.
Young monks begin their monastic training with a nine-year program of study of the ritual texts of the Karma Kagyu lineage. According to the Tsurphu tradition in which the monks are trained, there are thirty-six sets of texts that must be memorized. With this part of their monastic education complete, the monks embark on intensive training in all aspects of the tantric rites conducted at the monastery. Several years are spent learning each ritual skill, including shrine keeping, chanting, torma making, the playing of musical instruments, construction of sand mandalas, and sacred dance. Eventually, each monk specializes in one of these areas.