Root Institute for Wisdom Culture is a beautiful oasis of tranquillity located in the holy land of Bodhgaya, where Gautama Buddha attained enlightenment more than 2,500 years ago. We offer courses and retreats on Tibetan Buddhist meditation and philosophy in English, and pilgrimages steeped in the history and culture of Buddhism. Our courses are taught by experienced Western and Tibetan teachers and emphasize the practical application of the Buddha’s teachings to increase wisdom, compassion, peace, and happiness in one’s daily life.
Additionally, our social service projects – school, clinic, and welfare – bring immediate benefit to our rural community.
Join us in the land of enlightenment for this seven-day course where long-term teacher and practitioner, Jimi Neal, will lead us to a deeper understanding of how and why the essential and profound spiritual practice of compassion is the only true path to enlightenment.
The retreat includes the Mahayana practices of tonglen, taking on others’ suffering and giving away one’s happiness, and lojong, translated as “mind training” or “thought transformation”, and draws upon the Buddha’s profound wisdom of emptiness as taught in the Prajñāpāramitāhṛdayasutra, often translated as the Heart Sutra, as it is considered the heart or very essence of the perfection of wisdom. Suitable for advanced students and sincere beginners.
1 – 7 Jan 2020
This course is offered via a suggested donation. Please note that we will not turn away anybody for lack of funds. Do let us know how we can make your visit to Root Institute possible.
For established students or adventurous beginners
Our intermediate courses are ideal for those who are looking to challenge themselves beyond foundational Buddhist philosophy. Having said that, each course or retreat is open to anyone who may wish to attend.
Beginners may find some concepts a little challenging to understand. If you are in this category, you may like to prepare by way of reading or listening to online teachings.
Our intermediate courses are typically taught by special teachers or high lamas who visit Root Institute.
This course is offered offline / in person at the Root Institute for Wisdom Culture in the holy land of Bodhgaya.
Sitting on over two acres, Root Institute offers a tranquil and spiritual environment for individuals or groups wishing to attend one of our courses, undertake meditation retreat, or simply wanting a peaceful place to stay during a visit to Bodhgaya.
Flights to and from Gaya Airport are available between September and June. Domestic flights are from Delhi, Varanasi and Kolkata, and international from Bangkok, Colombo, and Yangon. We are 10 km or 20 minutes from Gaya Airport.
Gaya Railway Station is 16 km or 40 minutes away. Gaya is on the main train line with Delhi, Kolkata, and Varanasi. By train, Gaya is ∼4–5 hours from Varanasi, ∼12–15 hours from Delhi, and ∼5–6 hours from Kolkata. Direct trains to Gaya are also available from many other cities including Mumbai, Chennai, Dehradun, and Haridwar (for travel to/from Rishikesh).
Jimi / Jigme Neal has been a student and practitioner of Tibetan Buddha Dharma since meeting Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche at Kopan Nepal in 1974.
He has studied and completed many retreats under Lama Yeshe, Kyabjes Ling, Song, and Serkong Rinpoches, Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche and lamas from all four Tibetan traditions: Dilgo Kyentse Rinpoche, Dudjom Rinpoche, Sakya Trizin, Kalu Rinpoche. Ordained from 1980 to 1995, he was a founding monk of Nalanda Monastery in France where he studied under Kempo Geshe Jhampa Tekchok for more than ten years.
Jimi has lived mostly in India since 1972, teaching courses and retreats since 1995. He has also led retreats and taught in Spain, America, Israel, South Africa, and Mexico. And of course the Root Institute for the last 20 years.