Modern Kadampa Buddhism

Kadampa Buddhism is a Mahayana Buddhist school founded by the great Indian Buddhist Master Atisha (AD 982-1054). ‘Ka’ refers to Buddha’s teachings, and ‘dam’ to Atisha’s special Lamrim instructions known as ‘the stages of the path to enlightenment’. Kadampas learn to use Buddha’s teachings as practical methods for transforming all their daily activities into the path to enlightenment. 

The Kadampa tradition was later promoted widely in Tibet by Je Tsongkhapa and his followers, known as the ‘New Kadampas’, who were not only great scholars but also spiritual practitioners of immense purity and sincerity.

Modern Buddhism
The New Kadampa Tradition

After Je Tsongkhapa, the New Kadampa lineage flourished for hundreds of years, down to the present day. In recent years, it has been promoted widely throughout the world by the contemporary Buddhist Master, Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche, who founded the New Kadampa Tradition – International Kadampa Buddhist Union (NKT-IKBU). The New Kadampa Tradition is an association of over 1200 Buddhist Centres and groups that derive their inspiration from the ancient Kadampa Buddhist Masters and aim to preserve Kadampa Buddhism for the future.

BUDDHA SHAKYAMUNI

Buddha Shakyamuni is the founder of Buddhism who demonstrated the attainment of full enlightenment and how to awaken from the sleep of ignorance and cyclic rebirth. He then passed the teachings, or dharma, in an unbroken lineage through the ancient Kadampa teachers Atisha and Je Tsongkhapa.

VENERABLE ATISHA

The great Indian Buddhist Master Atisha (982-1054 AD) was responsible for reintroducing pure Buddhism into Tibet. He was asked to present a Dharma that everybody could follow and show how all paths of Sutra and Tantra could be practised together. Atisha wrote Lamp for the Path, the original Lamrim text that served as the basis for all subsequent Lamrim instructions.

JE TSONGKHAPA

Je Tsongkhapa was a great 14th century Tibetan Buddhist Master who promoted and developed the Kadampa Buddhism that Atisha had introduced three centuries earlier. His followers became known as the ‘New Kadampas’, and to this day New Kadampas worldwide study his teachings and strive to emulate his pure example.