Venerable Geshe Doga
Beaumaris Buddhist Meditation Centre is delighted to announce that Venerable Geshe Doga, Resident Lama from Tara Institute has accepted our request to teach at the centre as part of our Advanced Teaching Program.
Geshe Doga has a long friendship with Therese build over many years. He combines the insights of traditional scholarship with his personal warmth and humanity.
Venerable Geshe Doga was born in July 1935 in a small village called Khamze, situated in the remote Kham region of North-East Tibet.
At the age of seven he was admitted to the local monastery. Once there the Abbot of the monastery predicted that he would become a Geshe and so ordained him as a novice monk he studied here for ten years.
Geshe Doga then studied at Sera Monastery where he met his main teacher, Venerable Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey. As a young monk he studied three of the five major areas of learning - the Paramitas, Madhyamika philosophy and Pramanavatrika. He stayed there until he was twenty four years old, when in 1959, he was forced to flee Tibet.
Escaping Tibet was an arduous and dangerous task. The journey was long and the Chinese army were ruthless in their pursuit of any Tibetans attempting to escape to India. Geshe Doga stayed at the refugee camp at Buxta for eight years. Here he studied the two remaining major treatises, the Vinaya and Abidharma with his Guru, Venerable Gyume Khensur Urgyen Tsetan. Thus, Geshe-la completed the entire studies for the geshe degree.
He was one of thirteen monks chosen by the Indian Government to complete Sanskrit studies at Varanasi University. Their task was to translate Buddhist texts for the Indians and help restore the great Mahayana tradition in its homeland. This work earned much respect and was nine years of study which earned the Indian university degree of 'Acharya'.
Geshe Doga was faced with a big choice, for once a monk has become a Lharampa Geshe he is in much demand as a teacher. But he can also choose to go into solitude and meditate. We are very fortunate that he decided to teach.
At this time Lama Yeshe founder of the 'Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition' (FPMT) and a colleague at Buxta invited Geshe-la to teach young monks at Kopan Monastery in Nepal for three years. It is during this time he had contact with Western students for the first time.
From here Lama Yeshe requested that he go to Atisha Centre in Australia, this was in 1983. In September 1984 Geshe Doga accepted FPMT's request to become resident monk at Tara Institute his first teachings were from Shantideva's A guide to the Bodhisattva's Way of Life.
In March 1982 he passed his final exam for the highest monastic degree of Lharampa Geshe.
Geshe Doga has spent decades, memorizing texts, studying and debating them, meditating on them and being guided by his Gurus so that he makes no mistakes with his understanding of them. With great care and thoroughness he teaches with wisdom, clarity and the biggest of smiles. (reference Tara Institute website).
These teachings at BBMC are a wondrous opportunity for us to all make contact with a fully ordained Tibetan monk and experience authentic Tibetan Buddhist wisdom. Students will derive much benefit from attending. then contemplating and meditating on them.