Adhisthana has hosted many residential courses since it began. These courses hope to train new generations in Bhante’s elucidation of the Dharma by enabling a substantial number, especially of young people, to become deeply familiar with his words and imbibe the spirit they express. The experience is often incredibly enjoyable for both those who come on them and the Adhisthana community – they have often been described as one of the best things that happens here.
The Dharma Life Course for Young People
We have had the delight of hosting 10 Dharma Life Courses since 2013. These are usually five months long, and are residential courses at Adhisthana providing a thorough grounding in the principles and practice of Triratna Buddhism. They are aimed at mitras and those training for ordination, usually under the age of 35.
Half of the people on all the previous courses have come from outside the UK. This internationality is an important aspect of the course. It creates connections across our community and helps take the benefit of the course out into the world.
Coming on a course here is an opportunity to live an intensive Dharma Life: to live, practise, study and work together with others on the course community, while held within the wider context of Adhisthana. The programme is designed to deepen Dharma knowledge and practice. The courses are overseen by a team of Order members, who draw on the experience and skills of others within the Order to lead particular weeks.
Community living is an important part of the course and participants share rooms while here, as well as having a community night, and a Going For Refuge group if they are training for Ordination. Those on Dharma Life Courses also participate in the life of the wider Adhisthana community, meditating and eating together, as well as meeting up with individuals.
If you would like to know more about upcoming Dharma Life Courses, send us an email. The next course for women will begin in April 2021. The next men’s course will be in late 2021.
International Course for Order Members
In 2018 Adhisthana ran a one-month international course for 16 Order Members from across the world who have taken on significant responsibilities within Triratna. The aim was to provide training and support, as well as forging deep friendships and connections between the international sangha.
The course was run by a team of Order members who live and work at Adhisthana – the Chair of Adhisthana, the International Order Convenors, the co-ordinator of the International Council, and a couple of members of the Public Preceptors College.
While there is commonality between Triratna globally, there is also difference, so enabling people to come together to get to know each other more deeply, creating Kalyāṇa-mittatā, is a significant aspect of the course. Studying the four lineages, learning how to lead study, creating a culture of feedback, and exploring how to contribute more to our international community.
For some coming here, it had in part been a pilgrimage to meet Sangharakshita. Members of the course we able to meet him during their time here. However in the final week, Sangharakshita died. Those on the course supported the Adhisthana community, helping to hold a constant vigil throughout the days between his death and the returning of his body to Adhisthana.