Advanced Program

A Centre for Buddhist Study, Meditation & Retreat

Chenrezig Institute to start Fifth Round of FPMT’s Basic Program in April 2020!

Since 1997, the Basic Program has been taught, developed and refined by our resident teachers at Chenrezig Institute, Khensur Rinpoche, Geshe Tashi Tsering, Geshe Lozang Jamyang, and more recently Geshe Phuntsok Tsultrim, ably assisted by very qualified interpreters and tutors. Chenrezig Institute has now completed four full rounds of all subjects of the Basic Program, and two years of Middle Way studies at the masters Program level.

In the words of the very precious Kyabje Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche: ‘Establishing the study Program makes it more sure that the students take it seriously to learn and complete the texts and clearly understand the Buddhist philosophy for their own deeper and clearer understanding, for their attainments, realisations and enlightenment. Also you need that clearer and deeper understanding to spread the Dharma to other beings.’

The Basic Program is a unique and contemporary course providing a well-rounded structured education in the Buddhadharma for committed students ready to progress beyond an introductory level of study and practice.

The Basic Program, as laid out by FPMT, comprises nine core subjects plus three supplementary subjects. At Chenrezig Institute, it is studied over a period of four to five years in intensive study modules of between 6 – 8 weeks scheduled throughout the year to fit around other important events at the centre, especially visits from Lama Zopa Rinpoche. Students are encouraged to attend all modules and to fulfil the completion requirements (retreat and final examination) but may also attend individual subjects as they wish. Full information about the individual subjects is available here.

Basic Program courses in 2020 will be taught by our precious resident teacher, Geshe Phuntsok Tsultrim, personally chosen for our centre by Lama Zopa Rinpoche. We are very fortunate that he will continue (for 2020 at least) to be assisted by Ven Kartson, our excellent Advanced Program interpreter and tutor who is himself a Basic Program graduate.

For a fuller explanation of the different aspects of the Program as advised by Lama Zopa Rinpoche, including completion and Basic Program certification click here

Basic Program 2020

Bodhisattva's Way of Life

To introduce this, our fifth round of the Basic Program teachings, we plan, first of all, two modules studying Shantideva’s beautiful and inspiring Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life. This deceptively simple text teaches how to develop the precious mind of enlightenment (bodhicitta), and how to maintain it perfectly through the practice of the perfections. It is the basis of the Mahayana Path and a perfect motivation for all further study and practice.

The Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life part 1: 29th April – 20th May 4 weeks
The Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life part 2: 9th June – 22nd July 7 weeks

Our usual schedule is 9:00am to 5:00pm Tuesday and Wednesday each week for the duration of each module (except for the first week of this module – changed to Wednesday April 29th and Thursday April 30th to accommodate the late arrival of our interpreter).

These two modules will cover the text up to and including Chapter 8 on Concentration. The rather difficult and profound chapter on Wisdom and the closing one on Dedication will be offered later in the progress of the round of teachings.

Course fee for this 11 week course (‘inhouse’ ie in person in the Gompa) – $770
Course fee for this 11 week course (Online) – $575
(Sangha free of charge)


Buddhist Tenets

Buddhist Tenets: Sept/Oct/Nov – 8 weeks
(Our dates are not yet definite but will be sent out as soon as possible.)

An overview of the four schools of Buddhist thought, examining their assertions on how objects and subjects exist and how we develop along the path to enlightenment. From the coarsest view of the Great Exposition School, we move through more and more subtle views until we arrive at the most subtle one – that of the Middle Way Consequence School.

Course fee for this 8 week module (‘inhouse’ ie in person in the Gompa) – $560
Course fee for this 8 week module (Online) – $420
(Sangha free of charge)

If you’d like to be included on a Basic Program email list, send your details to [email protected] and send this information on to anyone you feel would be interested in attending inhouse or accessing the teachings online.

Please note that we are determined that no student should be excluded because of financial difficulties. Please contact us about time payments and/or reduced fees if you have any such concerns.
Ordained sangha are offered all the teachings free of charge.

IMPORTANT: Registrations are done on line through the Chenrezig website and requested at least 10 days prior to the start of each module to enable preparation of texts etc. If you are unable to register officially but intend to attend, please inform the course coordinator on [email protected]