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Foundation Program

The Foundation Program gives you the opportunity to engage in a structured study and meditation program on the essential teachings of the Buddhist spiritual path right here at Kadampa Meditation Center Madison.

Buddhism teaches that to find lasting happiness and meaning in our lives we need to follow a spiritual path. To follow this path it is important to have a close connection with a qualified teacher who can give us personal advice and encouragement, to listen to pure Dharma teachings and to be a part of a strong spiritual community. In this way we are able to gain a deeper understanding of the meaning of Buddha’s teachings, maintain a daily meditation practice that is both focused and powerful, and make genuine spiritual progress.

 

A Unique Study Program

Through regular teachings and meditation, systematic study, and group discussion, the Foundation Program (FP) offers the same training followed by spiritual practitioners in an unbroken lineage dating back to Buddha Shakyamuni. In this way we can gain authentic experience of the Dharma while still maintaining our contemporary lifestyle. By studying on this program we shall gain great confidence in meditation – from basic techniques for overcoming our everyday problems to practices leading to unsurpassed happiness and permanent inner peace. Warm friendships develop as students inspire each other, sharing insights and experiences of the spiritual path.

What is the structure?

The secret of the Foundation Program’s success lies in the manageable commitment made by the student and in the clear structure of study. Students sign up to study a book or part of a book, agree to attend every class, learn the material, and to take a test at the conclusion of the study. Class meets once a week for two hours on Tuesday nights. There is also a commitment to participate in at least one chanted prayer session or General Program Class weekly.

 

 What happens at a class?

Prior to class, students study an assigned portion of the text, usually a few pages long, and memorize the essential points. The class begins with chanted prayers and guided meditation. The teacher then reads the assigned selection from the book while giving commentary to the text. The students then divide into pairs to discuss the material. The teacher and students conclude by deciding what to meditate on in the next class and how to practice during the coming week.

 

What books are studied?

The purpose of the Foundation Program is to provide a systematic presentation of particular subjects of Mahayana Buddhism to enable practitioners to deepen their knowledge and experience of Buddhism.

 

Five subjects

The program comprises the following five subjects, based on Buddha’s Sutra teachings and the corresponding commentaries by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso:

1. The Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, based on the commentary, Joyful Path of Good Fortune
2. Training the Mind, based on the commentaries, Universal Compassion and Eight Steps to Happiness
3. The Heart Sutra, based on the commentary, Heart of Wisdom
4. Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life, based on the commentary, Meaningful to Behold
5. Types of Mind, based on the commentary, Understanding the Mind

Currently on Monday nights Joyful Path of Good Fortune is studied, and on Wednesday nights How to Understand the Mind is studied.

The benefits of studying and practicing these texts are as follows:

Joyful Path of Good Fortune – we gain the ability to put all Buddha’s teachings of both Sutra and Tantra into practice. We can easily make progress on and complete the stages of the path to the supreme happiness of enlightenment. From a practical point of view, the Stages of the Path is the main body of Buddha’s teachings, and the other teachings are like its limbs.

How to Understand the Mind – we gain the ability to transform our day-to-day living – including even the most difficult conditions – into opportunities for personal and spiritual development. By pointing the way to an unchanging freedom and happiness, this immensely readable book challenges us to grow, and will have a remarkable impact on our life.

If you have any questions about our Tuesday Evening Foundation Program, or would like more information, please contact us at info@meditationinmadison.org. Also, more info about  Foundation Program Membership can be found within this site.

Kadampa Meditation Center Madison

Year at a Glance

 

August

Noontime Meditation | Wednesdays and Fridays August 1-30 12:00-12:30 PM

Free Sunday Morning Class and Fall Open House | Sunday, August 18 10:00-11:30 AM

Sunday Morning Series: The Confidence to Change | Sundays August 18 and 25 (No Class August 4 or 11) 10:00-11:30 AM

Meditation for Kids | Sundays August 18 and 25 (No Class August 4 or 11) 10:00-11:30 AM

KMC Madison Fall Fair and Yard Sale | Saturday, August 31 9:00 AM-5:00 PM

 

September

Sunday Morning Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Sundays, September 1-22 10:00-11:30 AM (No Class Sunday, September 29 due to Fall International Festival) 

Meditation for Kids | Sundays, September 1-15 10:00-11:30 AM (No Classes Sunday, September 22 or 29 Due to Fall International Festival and Preparations) 10:00-11:30 AM

Noontime Meditation | Wednesdays and Fridays September 4-27 12:00-12:30 PM

New! Wednesday Night Drop-in Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Wednesdays, September 4-18 7:00-8:30 PM  (No Class Wednesday, September 25 due to Fall International Festival)

New! Thursday Morning Class: Basic Buddhist Meditations for Busy People | Thursdays September 5-19 10:00-11:15 AM (No Class Thursday, September 26 due to Fall International Festival)

Mala Making Workshop | Saturday, September 7 10:00 AM- 1:00 PM

Friday Night Lecture: Wisdom: Reliable Intuition | Friday, September 20 7:00 -8:30 PM

 

October

Noontime Meditation | Wednesdays and Fridays October 2-30 12:00-12:30 PM

Sunday Morning Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Sundays, October 6-27 10:00-11:30 AM

Meditation for Kids | Sundays, October 6-27 10:00-11:30 AM

New! Wednesday Night Drop-in Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Wednesdays, October 9-30 7:00-8:30 PM (No Class Wednesday, October 2 due to Fall International Festival)

New! Thursday Morning Class: Basic Buddhist Meditations for Busy People | Thursdays October 10-31 10:00-11:15 AM (No Class Thursday, October 3 due to Fall International Festival)

Friday Night Lecture: Overcoming Craving and Addiction: A Buddhist Perspective | Friday, October 18 7:00 -8:30 PM

Happiness from the Inside Out: A Meditation Workshop | Saturday, October 26 10:00 AM- 1 PM

 

November

Noontime Meditation | Wednesdays and Fridays November 1-29 12:00-12:30 PM (No Class Friday November 15 due to Midwest Dharma Celebration)

Sunday Morning Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Sundays, November 3, 10 & 24 10:00-11:30 AM (No Class Sunday, November 17 due to Midwest Dharma Celebration)

Meditation for Kids | Sundays, November 3, 10 & 24 10:00-11:30 AM (No Class Sunday, November 17 due to Midwest Dharma Celebration)

New! Wednesday Night Drop-in Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Wednesdays, November 6-20 (No Class Wednesday, November 27)

New! Thursday Morning Class: Basic Buddhist Meditations for Busy People | Thursdays November 7-21 10:00-11:15 AM (No Class Thursday, November 28)

A Life Without Anger Meditation Workshop | Saturday, November 9 10:00 AM-1:00 PM

Midwest Dharma Celebration | Friday, November 15-Sunday, November 17

 

December

Noontime Meditation | Wednesdays and Fridays December 4-28 12:00-12:30 PM (No Class Wednesday, December 25)

Sunday Morning Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Sundays, December 1-29 10:00-11:30 AM 

Meditation for Kids | Sundays, December 1-29 10:00-11:30 AM 

New! Wednesday Night Drop-in Series: Compassion and Wisdom: Meditations for a Happy Life | Wednesdays, December 4-18 (No Class Wednesday, December 25)

New! Thursday Morning Class: Basic Buddhist Meditations for Busy People | Thursdays December 5-19 7 10:00-11:15 AM (No Class Thursday, November 28)

Streams of Purifying Nectar: Vajrasattva Purification Retreat | Saturday, December 14 9:00 AM-5:00 PM

New Year's Eve Candlelight Meditations for World Peace | Tuesday, December 31 7:00-8:30 PM

 

Starting in 2019

Classes in Milwaukee | New! Series starts September 9, 2019 - Sign up for details and updates!

Fall International Festival at International Kadampa Retreat Center Grand Canyon, USA  | September 27-October 3