Ponlop RinpocheThe two primary tracks for Nitartha Summer Institute students, Shedra and Gomdra, are complementary and feed back into each other. The Shedra track presents the Hinayana, Mahayana, and Vajrayana view through a well-developed progressive series of courses designed as Foundation, Intermediate, and Advanced curriculum studies. The Shedra classes emphasize learning the crucial distinctions about mind and processes of consciousness.

In essence, how do we know what we know, and how do we know if this knowledge is correct? It is like a decoder key to the pith instructions for training on the path.

The Shedra program becomes extremely beneficial and supportive for our practice. The studies we do in the Shedra classes are not just for becoming a scholar or well versed in literature. They are all connected with our practice and they help us to demystify our mind and its world.  Everybody likes Mahamudra und Dzogchen, but the practice of Mahamudra und Dzogchen very much depends on the understanding that we develop through the Shedra classes.
– Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche

Shedra DebateTeachers in the Shedra track include Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche and Nitartha Institute core faculty. In 2018, for the first time ever, students in the Shedra track can attend some Gomdra teachings and students in the Gomdra track can attend some Shedra classes, as their schedule permits. This gives you a unique opportunity to explore both tracks.

The main teachings by Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche and Acharya Lama Tenpa Gyaltsen will be offered with Chinese translation. 

The Shedra track is divided in 2 sessions:

Shedra discussion

Shedra Session 1 (14 days)
July 6 (Friday) – July 19 (Thursday)
Travel Day: July 20 (Friday)

Shedra Session 2 (14 days)
July 21 (Saturday) – August 3 (Friday)
Travel Day: August 4 (Saturday)

I had a thoroughly fantastic time exploring the Dharma along with fellow scholars and practitioners in a beautiful environment. The opportunity to meet and talk with so many excellent teachers continues to inspire me, and I attribute my enthusiasm for Tibetan debate to my time spent at the Nitartha Institute this summer. Nitartha holds a special place as a rare opportunity to be completely immersed in a diverse community of Buddhist scholars and practitioners from around the world.
– Cody Foster, 2017 Nitartha Summer Institute Student