In This Issue:
Announcing two landmark new books
The tremendous success of 84000 demonstrates how KF is able to support enlightened activity with funding and infrastructure to ensure the preservation and continuation of Buddhadharma. We celebrate by announcing the release of a beautiful new illustrated sutra that would not have seen the light of day without 84000.
We are also pleased to announce the long-awaited publication of
Free Download of the Newly Illustrated Vimalakirti Sutra
With Commentary by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
In celebration of Saga Dawa, the month that many Buddhists commemorate the birth, enlightenment, and passing of Shakyamuni Buddha, Khyentse Foundation and 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha are pleased to announce the launch of The Sutra of The Teaching of Vimalakirti.
The book is offered in two sections, a prefatory commentary by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, “A Celebrity Falls Sick,” and a new 84000 edition of Robert A. F. Thurman’s English translation of the acclaimed Buddhist sutra, The Teaching of Vimalakirti.
Illustrated by DALeast, the book is available in English, Simplified Chinese, and Traditional Chinese as a free download on the 84000 website, offered as a thank you gift from Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche to the many supporters of Khyentse Foundation and 84000.
Khyentse Foundation often invests in related programs to augment its core efforts. For example, for the 84000 Kangyur translation, the foundation supports training the next generation of translators. KF has also:
Set up special scholarships for people enrolled in major university programs to study Tibetan and Dharma translation.
Collaborated with Rangjung Yeshe Institute in Nepal to set up an MA program for Dharma translation studies.
Helped support Tibetan translation programs at the University of Vienna.
Assisted khenpos to become proficient in English, so they can answer difficult questions that arise in translation.
Help us build Khyentse Foundation's funding base so that we can continue to support the study and practice of all traditions of Buddhism around the world.
Monthly Donations Matched
When you become a monthly donor, every dollar you donate is matched by the Patrons of Manjushri.
Two Ways of Supporting Dharma Activities: Funding Existing Projects and Creating New Ones
KF began as primarily a funding organization, with grants to monasteries and to individuals who wished to go on retreat; it was not set up to be operational or to run projects on its own. But everything changed as faith in the foundation's ability to actualize Rinpoche’s vast vision grew, resources increased, and our team of volunteers expanded.
First, KF branched out to make major grants to TBRC (now BDRC), Fragile Palm Leaves Foundation, and others. But it soon became clear that there were important gaps where no programs existed to be funded.
Now the three key aspects of Khyentse Foundation’s mission—preserving and empowering all lineages of Buddhism, in the 21st century and beyond; supporting relationships so that the impact of KF grants and funding is successful and enduring; and transferring knowledge—are carried out in two distinct ways:
- Funding existing Buddhist institutions and individuals
- Creating projects and initiatives that fill a recognized gap
84000: A Case Study
A prime example of how KF closed a gap is 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha. When Rinpoche first expressed his wish that the words of the Buddha be translated into all modern languages, and to make the translations available to everyone free of charge, the KF team found that no comprehensive translation initiative was tackling this tremendous need. So KF launched the project, hosting the historic Translating the Words of the Buddha conference in March 2009.
More than 50 of the world’s leading Tibetan Buddhist teachers, translators, and academics gathered to discuss translation of the Buddhist canon, especially the translation of the Tibetan Kangyur into English. All participants agreed that the very survival of Buddhism depended on working together to preserve the words of the Buddha for future generations, and 84000 – a project of all Buddhists, for all Buddhists -- was born. KF broadened its mandate to provide interim administrative infrastructure in addition to financial support, incubating 84000 to become an independent organization. In June 2013, 84000 became a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization with its own board of directors. Its mission is to translate and publish the 70,000 pages of the Kangyur within 25 years, and to translate and publish the 161,800 pages of the Tengyur within 100 years. Currently, about a third of the Kangyur — more than 23,000 pages — is being translated. That's approximately 10% of the entire Kangyur and Tengyur. Until 50% of the Kangyur has been translated, 84000 is focusing on translation into English.
Recognizing Unmet Needs
KF is serving a similar incubating role in other projects arising from unmet needs – such as Middle Way Education (a Buddhist education for children initiative), establishing training and development programs for 21st-century Buddhist teachers, and a major cross-translation project
, translating missing parts of the Tibetan Kangyur in the Chinese Tripitaka into Chinese, and vice-versa. (See the sidebar for more examples.)
KF continues to enhance its funding with additional resources to strengthen certain funded projects. For example, the foundation promotes the training of qualified translators to meet the needs of existing translation projects.
The tremendous success of 84000 demonstrates how, through the support of generous donors and the guidance of Rinpoche, KF is able to catalyze and support enlightened activity to help ensure the preservation and continuation of the Buddhadharma.
Chökyi Lodrö Namtar to Be Released in July
The Life and Times of Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö: The Great Biography by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and other stories
Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö was one of the most outstanding Rimé masters of the 20th century. After he passed away in 1959, his spiritual wife, Khandro Tsering Chodrön, asked one of his closest students, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, to write the official biography. In the Tibetan tradition, a great master’s biography, or namtar, not only describes events in that master’s life, it sets out the entire path to enlightenment.
In July of 2017, Shambhala Publications will publish the first English translation of Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö’s namtar, along with stories that Orgyen Tobgyal Rinpoche has gathered throughout his life from Jamyang Khyentse’s teachers, students, friends, and relatives. As Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche writes in his introduction to the book, “Reading the namtar of such a great being can help on many levels. Not least, it shows us that although our world is home to countless selfish, shortsighted scavengers, great compassionate visionaries continue to manifest, and there is still hope for humankind.”
READ NEWS AND RELATED STORIES FROM OUR ARCHIVES BELOW
The banner photo features a detail from artist DALeast's artwork, comissioned by Rinpoche for the Vimalakirti book, which was edited by Janine Shulz. Janine also edited the Chökyi Lodrö book with Drubgyud Tenzin Rinpoche and Khenpo Sonam Phuntshok.