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Buddhism in a Nutshell


Buddhism in a Nutshell is an introductory course that provides an overview of Tibetan Buddhist concepts and practice for complete beginners. It is also suitable for people who have heard or read some Buddhist teachings but would like a more structured approach to understanding the path to enlightenment as taught by Shakyamuni Buddha. 

It begins with an introduction to the life of Shakyamuni Buddha and then discusses the Buddha’s first teaching on “the four noble truths”—the truths of suffering, the cause of suffering, the cessation of suffering, and the path to the cessation of suffering. This teaching is common to all Buddhist traditions and forms the cornerstone for all the other teachings given by the Buddha.

It also provides an overview of Tibetan Buddhism based on the three principal aspects of the path to enlightenment—renunciation, bodhichitta, and the right view of emptiness—as taught in the stages of the path (Lam Rim) teachings and based here on the short text 'Foundation of All Good Qualities' by Lama Tsong Khapa. 

The course also provides a brief presentation of meditation and five guided meditations suitable for beginners. It is advised however to do the course How to meditate? before or after Buddhism in a Nutshell to have a more complete introduction into the practice of meditation.

Buddhism in a Nutshell is regularly taught in Amsterdam and Loenen (sometimes only in Dutch).