5 Indien



There are four holy places associated with the Buddha:

Lumbini, in Nepal, where he was born;

Sarnath, near Varanasi, where he gave his first teachings;

Kushinagar, near Gorakhpur, where he died; and

Bodhgaya where he attained Enlightenment.

A Bo tree growing at Bodhgaya is said to be a direct descendant of the original tree under which the Buddha sat, meditated and achieved Enlightenment. Buddhist from all over the world flock to Bodhgaya, along with many westerners who come to learn about Buddhism and meditation.

How to get there from Gaya:

Several government-run Nagar Seva buses journey each day to Bodh Gaya from the railway station in Gaya (last service 6pm; Rs3), as do private buses from the Zila School bus stand, 1 km south of the station. Auto-rickshaws cost around Rs80, while horse drawn tongas (1hr 30min) charge Rs50. At night only travel by taxi (Rs250); after 7pm very little traffic moves along the route which is considered dangerous. All buses - including the few direct services from Patna and Rajgir - stop an the main road north of the Mahabodhi temple. Most sites are within walking distance.


The Burmese Vihara

Gaya Road, Bodhgaya

Location: In Bihar Sate. Bodhgaya is 13km from Gaya and auto-rickshaws shuttle back and forth. They start from the Kacheri in the city centre at Gaya. Buses depart less frequently.

The Burmese monastery is particularly popular because of its study courses. There are often western visitors here although most of the rooms are very basic. The monastery has a garden and a library with English books. If you stay remember that dignified conduct is expected of the guests. There is no charge for staying here but you should, of course, make a donation.


Wat Pa Buddhagaya (Buddhagaya Vanaram Temple)

Bodhgaya, Bihar, India

Tel: 91-631-400528, Fax: 91-631-400845

Location: In Bihar Sate. Bodhgaya is 13km from Gaya and auto-rickshaws shuttle back and forth. They start from the Kacheri in the city centre at Gaya. Buses depart less frequently.

There are Thai monks staying at the temple. From time to time, meditation retreats are held at the temple. The Thai temple is built as a typical Wat with a terracotta roof of overlapping eaves. It is in a decorative garden at the end of a short road.

Two ten-day courses in the Vipassana Theravadin tradition, run by Christopher Titmus, a western Buddhist, are held every January at the Thai temple; the price (US$70) includes food and lodging - ask at the Burmese Vihara or Thomas Jost at the Burmese Vihara ; information can also be obtained in advance from Gaia House, West Ogwell, Newton Abbot, Devon TQ12 6EN, UK. Telephone: (+ 44) (0) 1626 333613


Web site:


The International Meditation Centre

PO Bodh-Gaya 824231

Dist, Gaya, Bihar

Abbot: Ven. Dr. Rastrapal, Mahathera

Meditation System: Affiliated Mahasi Sayadaw Meditation Centre

The International Meditation Centre hosts ten-day beginners' courses in Vipassana, and thirty-day courses for the more experienced. Donations are accepted, as there are no fixed fees. Their new and underdeveloped site, 5km away near the university, the Dhamma Bodhi International Meditation Centre, also organises ten-day courses and offers a motley collection of basic bungalows and tents. Several other courses take place throughout the



Root Institute (FPMT)

PO Bodhgaa Gaya District, Bihar 824 231

Tel: (+6 31) 400714 Fax: (+6 31) 444548


Web site:

Director: Tony Simmons

Tradition: Tibetan. Foundation For the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT). Along with seminars, the Root Institute for Wisdom Culture, in a rural setting 1.5km west of the main temple, organises short and week-long residential courses, mostly focussing an the Mahayana tradition. The institute does not belong to any religious order, and has a low-key approach, working with the local community an education and health projects. Mud huts are available for retreats, and guests who appreciate a quiet environment are also welcome.


Tushita Mahayana Meditation Centre (New Delhi)

9 Padmini Enclave Hauz Khas

New Delhi, 110016, India

Tel: (91) (11) 651 3400, Fax: (91) (11) 469 2963


Tushita Meditation centre was founded in 1979 by the late Lama Thubten Yeshe and by the current Spiritual Director, Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche as a member of the FPMT. Since its inception, Tushita has provided a safe haven in which to investigate mind and heart, and a sacred place in which to find inner peace and clarity. Many great masters of the Tibetan tradition, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, have taught at Tushita and helped to inspire others along the spiritual path.

The Centre Offers:


Tushita Meditation Centre (Dharamsala)

McLeod Ganj Dharamsala

Kangra District HP 176 219

Tel: (91) (1892) 21866, Fax: (91) (1892) 21246 Attn. Tushita


Director: Sally Barraud

Dharamsala, India a member of the FPMT

Established in 1972, Tushita is a centre for the study and practice of Buddhism from the Tibetan Mahayana Tradition, and is situated an a forested mountain slope above Dharamsala, at an altitude of 2100m. We aim to provide a friendly and conducive environment for people to contact, learn and put into practice the teachings of the Buddha.

With this intention, we organize regular introductory courses an Buddhist philosophy and meditation, as well as group retreats throughout the year. We also provide facilities for people who wish to engage in private retreat. The Centre is under the guidance of Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche, and is a member of the FPMT. For further information please feel free to contact us. Response to e-mail inquiries may be delayed due to technical problems with Indian telephone network:


Mahabodhi International Meditation Centre (MIMC)

Main Office, Ladakh

Postal address: Devachan, P.O.Box 22, Leh, Ladakh - 194101, India

Tel: 91-1982-44025 / 44155

MIMC Delhi Office:

Postal address: A-116, 2nd Floor, Arjun Nagar, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi - 110001, India

Tel: 91-11-6165017, Fax: 91-11-6162978 / 6164444


Web site:

Meditation Courses:

Ladakh, a land of enchanting beauty and tranquility, is a paradise for meditation and yoga practices. With its established reputation, experience and expertise, MIMC offers numerous residential and non-residential meditation courses.

A variety of free meditation courses such as Vipassana, Zen and Tibetan are conducted every summer ranging from 2 to 10 days at the main Devachan Centre. Twin shared rooms with modern amenities are available at the Centre for Rs 200 - 500 per night including vegetarian meals. Evening meditation classes are held at the sub-Centre at Changspa in Leh as well as over the weekend at the Devachan Centre. An additional attraction offered by the Centre is the Milarepa Meditation & Trekking Camp, a retreat program in beautiful remote valleys for those seekers who wish to experience the splendor of both inner and outer realms.


Vipassana International Academy (Dhammagiri)

Dhamma Giri; P.O. Box 6

Igatpuri 422 403

District Nasik; Maharashtra; India.

Tel: [91] (025) 538-4076,4086,4302; Fax: [91] (025)538-4176.


For Information an Goenka Vipassana Centres in India (Maharashtra, Gujarat, Northern India, Central India, Eastern India and Southern India) with the Schedule of Courses, please check the Web site.


Web site:

Lineage: The tradition of Sayagyi U Ba Khin as taught by S.N. Goenka Description: Offers ten-day courses of Vipassana meditation.

Meditation System: As taught by S.N. Goenka. In a ten day retreat, meditators begin by undertaking the Five Precepts of moral conduct as the basis for their practice. They work to concentrate the mind by focusing an the natural breath at the nostril. Once sufficient concentration is established, they proceed to the technique of Vipassana proper: They explore their mental and physical nature by moving attention systematically throughout the body, dispassionately observing the physical sensations that occur. This ever­deepening introspection sets in motion a process by which past conditioning of the mind is eliminated layer by layer. The course concludes with the practice of Metta Bhavana, the mental sharing with others the benefits meditators have gained by their practice.

Intensive silent retreats are open to the general public. The usual course format is ten days. There is no charge for the teaching. Donations are accepted from participants only to cover room, board, and other operating expenses. Most courses are conducted by authorised assistant teachers.


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