For many years, the Ashoka Grant program has been the main channel between KF and the Buddhist public in need of support. Any person or organization engaged in a project to promote Buddhist study or practice can apply for an Ashoka Grant, and the program helps us connect with an array of interesting projects. Here are some examples of projects that KF has supported through Ashoka Grants. 

  • Rodrigo Reijers of Denmark is recording dharma chants, prayers, and recitations in English. Available at  https://vajrasound.com. 
  • Haiti Vipassana Association offered a 10-day vipassana retreat just outside of Port-au-Prince in 2017. The materials and instructions were translated into Haitian Creole so that all Haitians could participate, not just the French and English speaking populations. “The Haiti Vipassana Association is grateful for the local and global Vipassana community as well as Khyentse Foundation, whose support made possible for more lives to be deeply touched by the teachings of the Buddha.

 

The meditation hall

Some participants of the retreat in Haiti

 

  • The Bodhi Tree Project (hyper link to https://bodhitreeproject.org) of Oregon State University, in the United States, worked with a group of university students to study the genetics of bodhi trees. “The Bodhi Tree Project offers a scholarly learning environment that brings together the teachings and practices of Buddhism with the teachings and practices of science. We investigate, contemplate, grow, and share bodhi trees, known to science as Ficus religiosa.”

 

The Bodhi Tree Project

  • Susan Shannon, an American Buddhist chaplain, received a grant from KF in 2018 to teach dharma to Death Row Inmates at San Quentin State Prison in California. They studied texts including the Bodhicaryavatara, the Satipatthana Sutra, and the Medicine Buddha sadhana. The inmates also practiced Tara and mantra recitation.

In Shannon’s words,

So much of what goes on in prison is unseen. I would like your sponsors to know that every meeting I have ever had in prison ends with a dedication to all the causes and conditions which arranged to allow that meeting to take place. Of course, this includes all the patrons and donors to Khyentse Foundation.

If the Department of Corrections was focused on the transformation of the hearts and minds of the incarcerated rather than mass incarceration, they would be so grateful for the spread of Buddhism among their locked-up population. Greater degrees of kindness, compassion, tolerance, patience, generosity, connection, and interconnection among the inmates at San Quentin are a direct result of the generosity of Khyentse Foundation’s donors and patrons.

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So much of what goes on in prison is unseen. I would like your sponsors to know that every meeting I have ever had in prison ends with a dedication to all the causes and conditions which arranged to allow that meeting to take place. Of course, this includes all the patrons and donors to Khyentse Foundation.

If the Department of Corrections was focused on the transformation of the hearts and minds of the incarcerated rather than mass incarceration, they would be so grateful for the spread of Buddhism among their locked-up population. Greater degrees of kindness, compassion, tolerance, patience, generosity, connection, and interconnection among the inmates at San Quentin are a direct result of the generosity of Khyentse Foundation’s donors and patrons.

We continue to strengthen our efforts to train 21st-century Buddhist teachers for the West, and to develop Buddhist education for children, all aimed at providing the necessary conditions for Buddhadharma to flourish in new Buddhist countries in the future.