Foundation Program

For those students who want to deepen their experience of Buddhism, Geshe Kelsang Gyatso designed the Foundation Program. Foundation Program offers an immersion in Buddhist teachings by systematically studying one of six texts on the curriculum. If you are interested in this program, please contact the Education Program Coordinator at

NEW! Daytime Foundation Program studying Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso's book Universal Compassion.

Meets Thursdays 1:00-3:00pm - send an email to learn more.

Foundation Program


We all have the potential for self-transformation and a limitless capacity for the growth of good qualities, but to fulfill this potential we need to know what to do along each stage of our spiritual journey. In the book The New Eight Steps to Happiness, Geshe Kelsang Gyatso reveals practical ways in which we can use the timeless wisdom from the eight beautiful verses that comprise one of Buddhism’s best-loved teachings. Composed by the great Tibetan Bodhisattva, Geshe Langri Tangpa, the poem The Eight Verses of Training the Mind shows how we can transform all life’s difficulties into valuable spiritual insights.

Foundation Program teacher Noreen Flack has been practicing Dharma for many years. She served as Education Program Coordinator and then Administrative Director of KMC Washington for many years, helping Kadam Dharma to flourish in the Pacific Northwest. Noreen has many years experience teaching both beginners and intermediate students. She is deeply respected for her clear teachings and humble example of a modern Buddhist practitioner.

“Everyone, whether religious or non-religious, is looking for happiness all the time and wants to be free from problems and suffering permanently. We can fulfill these wishes through understanding and practicing the instructions given in this book”
Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche

What is the Foundation Program?

The Foundation Program is a uniquely structured study program that enables us to gain deeper understanding and experience of Buddhist teachings and to develop a regular meditation practice. It is ideal for those who have an introductory understanding of Buddhism and wish to learn more. We meet each week during term times, and have regular term breaks and a longer break in the summer.

Benefits of Foundation Program

Through regular teachings, meditation, systematic study and group discussion, the Foundation Program offers deep support for your spiritual life. In essence, it is the same training followed by spiritual practitioners in an unbroken lineage dating back to Buddha Shakyamuni. Its special quality is that we can gain authentic experience without abandoning our modern lifestyle. By studying on this program we will gain great confidence in meditation – from basic techniques for overcoming our everyday problems, to practices leading to unsurpassed happiness and permanent inner peace.


The donation for Foundation Program is $85 per month, which includes all Foundation Program classes, General Program classes at KMC Washington in Ballard and our branch locations, and a discounted rate for day courses and other events. Kadampa Meditation Center Washington is a registered not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization dedicated to benefiting the general public through our International Temples Project. The monthly donation for Foundation Program is fully tax deductible.

If you have the wish to join Foundation Program or would like to learn more, please contact the Education Program Coordinator at KMC Washington, (206) 526-9565 or email

About the Program

The purpose of the Foundation Program is to provide a systematic presentation of particular subjects of Mahayana Buddhism to enable practitioners to deepen their knowledge and experience of Buddhism. The program comprises the following five subjects, based on Buddha’s Sutra teachings and the corresponding commentaries by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso:

The Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, based on the commentary Joyful Path of Good Fortune
Training the Mind, based on the commentaries Universal Compassion and The New Eight Steps to Happiness
The Heart Sutra, based on the commentary The New Heart of Wisdom
Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life, based on the commentary Meaningful to Behold
Types of Mind, based on the commentary How to Understand the Mind