Namgyal Monastery Institute of Buddhist Studies in Ithaca, New York, is the North American Seat of the Personal Monastery of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The founding of Namgyal-Ithaca in 1992 marked an important new phase in the history of Buddhism and Tibetan culture in America. Launched with the inspiration of the late Venerable Pema Losang Chogyen, a Namgyal monk, and several of his American friends, Namgyal-Ithaca was established as a branch of the main Namgyal Monastery located in Dharamsala, India. The primary mission of the newly established Ithaca branch was to offer Western students the opportunity to study authentic Tibetan Buddhism in a monastic setting.
In keeping with the tradition of the original Namgyal Monastery in Tibet, Namgyal-Ithaca is a non-sectarian institution and thus offers students the opportunity to study aspects of all the sects in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. Classes at the monastery are taught by our faculty of Namgyal monks and visiting teachers. Students are part-time and full-time and range in age, background, interest and profession.
Since its founding, the monastery has developed a regular student base and has expanded its teaching and events programming to fit the growing needs of the students. Programs include a three year core curriculum, weekend teachings, summer retreats, daily meditation, conferences, guided pilgrimages, and the celebration of Tibetan holidays. Namgyal’s visiting faculty includes prominent western scholars, clergy, and teachers from all traditions of Buddhism.