My online study experience at RYI
During my first semester at RYI, I took fundamentals of Buddhist philosophy, Buddhist History and culture, Intermediate classical Tibetan, and Bodhisattvas way of life.
In the fundamentals of Buddhist philosophy class, guided by Professor Diane Denis la, we get to write reflection paper, annotated Bibliography and essay on No self. This paper really helped me understand the fundamental views of Buddhism and an overview of Buddhist tenet schools, and also helped me shape my approach towards writing a critical constructive essays.
In Buddhist History and culture class, guided by Professor Julia Stenzel la, again we had to present essay on given topic and quiz every week. This class guided me through history of Theravada Buddhism, Mahayana Buddhism and Vajrayana Buddhism.
In Bodhisattvas way of life class, guided by Lopon Tsondru Tharchin la, we learned quite a lot about the practices of Bodhisattvas, covering mainly the 6 paramita in detail, 5path, 10 Bhumi, overall constituting the Mahayana ideals. In this class we read the resources in Tibetan as well as in English language, which helped me a lot to improve my classical Tibetan and English in a way.
In classical Tibetan class, we worked on translating the works of famous Tibetan Buddhist masters such as Ju Mipham, Je Rinpoche, Rongton etc. We mainly worked on translating shorter writings, phrases etc by these renouned masters.
In my second semester, I am now being more cautious when it comes to reading articles by various Buddhist scholars. I began to reflect more on each sentences and emphasize more on connecting various article, sourcing the common ground and observing the deviations. This semester I took Buddha nature class, tenets in Tibetan Buddhism, classical Tibetan, and Academic English and letter to a friend by Nāgārjuna. All of these subjects are amazing and also while studying it, I felt like untying the knots. Overall, what I really like about study at RYI is the coming together of the study of Traditional text, as well as the study of recent Academic scholarship on various sutras and commentaries. Also the emphasis not only on study of Buddhist thought but also on reflecting what we studied, building arguments and forming an critical constructing essays.