NEW PRIMARY SCHOOL FUNDRAISER!
$100,000 CHALLENGE GRANT
FROM SCOTT WELLENBACH & THE PEMA CHÖDRÖN!
Please click HERE for more information
Funds raised for this original campaign began in 2012. Thanks to the generosity of our worldwide donors, we have less than $ 200,00 left to raise as of Summer 2018. Miscellaneous construction and expenses such as landscaping, pavers, tiles for the outdoor veranda and furnishings still remain. Capital campaign donations are still needed.
Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s vision for Tsoknyi Gechak Ling Nunnery includes a Primary School, Nuns’ Residence and Shedra, an International Meditation Center, a large Main Temple, a Three Year Retreat Building and Nun’s Kitchen and Dining Hall. Some of the buildings have been fully sponsored, but several are still in need of funding. Funding is needed for the following additional spaces – Ritual Room, Archive Room, Administrative Offices, Public Dining Hall, Lecture Hall, and Library.
Tsoknyi Gechak Ling
- Nun’s Shedra and Residence
- International Meditation Center
- Pema Chödrön Drubde
- Tsoknyi Gechak Primary School
- Main Temple
- Original Chobar Temple
- Nun’s Kitchen and Dining Hall
- Additional Spaces – Ritual Room, Archive Room, Administrative Offices, Lecture Hall, Public Dining Hall, and Library.
TSOKNYI GECHAK PRIMARY SCHOOL
The Primary School was completed as of July 2013. One hundred young nuns moved in and started school in May 2013. Currently, one hundred and thirty-five young nuns are receiving a rare and life-changing education. The Nuns are receiving a Nepali Government Certified Secular Education, Kindergarten through 8th Grade. The final cost of the Primary School was $493,000 and is fully funded.
The primary school building includes both dormitories and classrooms. Many of the nuns are very young and have recently come from mountain villages where access to education is limited and difficult. Therefore the first step in the nuns’ education is to teach them to read and write. As the nuns are growing up in the modern world, it is important that they receive a secular education. We provide Tibetan, English and Nepali classes, as well as other general topics of study. This primary education gives them a foundation in reading, writing, math, social studies, science, art, mindfulness, and meditation which prepares them for the higher study of Buddhist philosophy.
The nun’s residence will provide housing for the nuns and classrooms for the Shedra. Historically, nuns have struggled to have access to higher Buddhist education in Asia. By opening one of the first separate nun’s Shedras in Nepal, we are providing the nuns at Chobhar with a full Buddhist University Education comparable to a monk’s Shedra. A 9-year curriculum has now been established, and as of Spring 2017, the first class of Shedra students began their 7th year of this course. They will read the most important Buddhist texts, and study the complete range of topics of Buddhist philosophy, logic, debate and metaphysics. Upon completion of this course, they will be learned scholars and capable of teaching others.
The total cost of the Shedra and Nun’s Residence is $1,103,000 as of Spring 2017, an additional $54,000 is needed to complete funding.
The Inauguration Celebration of the Nuns’ Shedra and Residence Building was in November 2014.
INTERNATIONAL RETREAT CENTER
Estimated Cost of Construction: USD $922,000.
The 40 individual rooms have been sponsored by Rinpoche’s students from Hong Kong and around the world. As of Spring 2017, the total budget is $922,000 and $140,000 needs to be raised. There will be additional dorm rooms, community bathrooms and a dining hall and kitchen as part of the facility.
Over the years many students and friends have sought a conducive environment for practice in Nepal, and a place supported by other spiritual practitioners. We will offer visitors an opportunity to meditate and learn about Dharma alongside the nuns at Tsoknyi Gechak Ling. There will be comfortable single and double rooms with balconies and private bathrooms. The rooms at the center will be available year-round for shorter or longer meditation retreats, and there will be occasional teachings offered by Rinpoche, Tsoknyi Lineage Nuns, and Khenpos.
THE MAIN TEMPLE
Estimated Cost of Construction: USD $2,000,300. -As of Winter 2108, approximately $472,000 still needs to be raised. Construction began in 2014. We are grateful to Rinpoche’s students from Taiwan and Hong Kong for funding a large part of this building.
Photo Credits- Michael Kunkel
The central focal point of a nunnery or monastery is the main temple. It is the largest gathering space and holds sacred statues, paintings, and ritual items. The images inside are consecrated with relics from sublime beings and serve as a support for offerings. It is decorated with beautiful artwork, sculpture, murals, and classic Tibetan architectural features, which create a powerful and inspiring atmosphere for meditation, prayers, pujas, and visitors. All the ceremonies and group practices happen in the main temple – it is the spiritual heart of the community.
Visitors Kitchen and Dining Hall
THE PEMA CHÖDRÖN DRUBDE (Three Year Retreat Center)
This building has been sponsored by the Pema Chödrön Foundation. The budget for the building was $734,000 and is fully funded. Many thanks to Pema Chödrön and her organization’s donors for their generosity and vision to provide retreat facilities for female monastics. Tsoknyi Rinpoche and the Tsoknyi Nepal Nuns have decided to name the retreat center The Pema Chödrön Drubde to honor this generous gift.
Photo Credits- Michael Kunkel
Spiritual progress and deep transformation require time, energy and a great deal of dedication. The sprouts of genuine human qualities, such as humility, gentleness, and compassion, must be carefully nurtured and refined. The optimal environment for this process is a strict retreat. The Gechak nuns are renowned for their intensive meditation, and this retreat center will provide an opportunity for them to focus exclusively on inner development, and stabilize the mind. They uphold a special system of practice designed for female practitioners by the first Tsoknyi Rinpoche and his main disciple. We are creating a secluded environment so the nuns of Tsoknyi Gechak Ling can continue this extraordinary tradition, and practice intensively for periods of three years at a time.
THE KITCHEN AND DINING HALL
The budget for the Kitchen and Dining Hall is $600,000 and $100,000 is left to raise. This building needs no explanation and it will provide the final necessary piece in the design of this nunnery – a place to gather and be nourished both physically and spiritually. As you can see from the pictures below, the nuns currently have a makeshift routine for their meals.
Photo Credits – Michael Kunkel
Please visit our DONATE page for information on how you can join the international effort to make real this vision of a wellspring of goodness in Nepal.
All donations, in any amount, are gratefully accepted and appreciated. It is a tribute to the devotion of Rinpoche’s students and their generosity that much of the construction was begun quickly. The Tsoknyi Lineage Nuns will soon have a true place of refuge and prayer.
The education and empowerment of girls and women have been shown to have the greatest effect on peace in the area and beyond. Your donation will not only help the nuns build their nunnery; it also will enable them to become teachers more quickly. Their practice, prayers, and teachings will ripple out into the world, bringing lessons of peace and compassion, and completing the circle of giving.
Donation checks should be mailed to TNN with your special instructions to sponsor a particular building, or can be sent to the general building fund. A donation in honor of a loved one can be accommodated.
Please make checks payable to:
Tsoknyi Humanitarian Foundation
39575 County Road 33
Steamboat Springs, Colorado 80487 USA