Ceremony & Ritual

Buddhist Liturgy
In-class or independent study of terms and concepts in such ceremonies as repentances, great transference, Pure Land, recitation liturgy, and the methods of practice involved in these rituals. Specific content of course decided upon between student and evaluating instructor.

Daily Ceremonies
Bilingual study of liturgy, training in performance of ritual. Students may enroll as follows: Morning Recitation, Evening Recitation, Noon Meal Ceremony
and Closing Triple Refuge,


Heart Mantra. Requires daily participation for the entire semester.

Dharma Instruments
Instruction in proper deportment when handling Dharma instruments, and basic rhythm and technique in accompanying English and Chinese morning, noon, and evening recitation.

Recitation Sessions
Participation in regularly scheduled intensive recitation sessions. Attendance record of practice required.


Developing Inherent Wisdom
This course is primarily designed to develop the students’ ability to think critically, evaluate situations, make sound judgments, and express themselves orally and in writing. It is normally taken as a combination of critical listening to others’ lectures, lecturing oneself, group evaluation, and discussion. Writing or the equivalent may be substituted for lecturing in some cases.

Independent study course in which student selects a Sutra, Shastra, Vinaya text, mantra, syllabary, or other approved Buddhist text or passages thereof to memorize.

Introduction to Buddhism
A general introduction to Buddhism. See current bulletin for content.

Chan Study
Introduction to passages of Sutras and other texts that describe Chan and the methods of practice. Repeatable when content is new to student.

Mantra Study
Introduction to passages of Sutras and other texts that describe mantras and the methods of practice. Repeatable
when content is new to student.

Repentance Study
Study of the principles discussed in selected repentance texts. Repeatable when content is new to student.

Recitation Study
Introduction to Sutras and passages of texts that describe the Pure Land and methods of practice. Repeatable when content is new to student.

Fundamental Shastras
Study of selected fundamental Shastra texts such as the Hundred Dharmas Shastra, Consciousness-Only texts, Awakening of Faith Shastra, and
Flower Adornment Prologue. See current bulletin for specific content.

This course delves into various Sutras and precepts that deal specifically with the principles which prohibit the taking of life and the eating of the flesh of living beings. It also includes research to verify these timeless Buddhist principles.

Topics in Sutra Studies
Content coordinated with Developing Inherent Wisdom.


Fundamental Sutras
Investigation of Mahayana canonical texts and their application along with commentarial literature where appropriate. See current bulletin for specific content.

Dharma Flower Sutra
In-depth study of the Dharma Flower Sutra using the Ven. Master Hua’s commentary. Repeatable when content is new to student.

Flower Adornment Sutra
In-depth study of the Flower Adornment Sutra using the Ven. Master Hua’s commentary. Repeatable when content is new to student.

Shurangama Sutra
In-depth study of the Shurangama Sutra using the Ven. Master Hua’s commentary and with reference to other traditional commentaries. Repeatable when content is new to student.

Chinese Ethical Thought
A survey course on Chinese ethical systems. From within the vast scope of Chinese philosophy is very vast, this course will only focus on the four
major traditional approaches -- their respective founders, teachings, works and influence.

Chinese Culture & Philosophy
A review of Chinese philosophy from the pre-Chin Dynasty to the present.

Chinese Psychological Theory:
The Five Elements

Basics of traditional Chinese psychology founded on the concept of the five elements: water, wind, air, fire and wood, and their mutual interaction.

Ethics and the Family
The course focuses on filial respect as the major requirement for character development. It features a comparative study between traditional Confucian and Buddhist ethical concepts, based on the Classic of Filial Piety (Confucian text) and the Sutra of the Buddha Speaks of the Difficulty of Repaying Parents’ Kindness. Through a class format involving formal lecture, analysis and discussion, students achieve a deeper understanding of the principles of filial respect and apply them in their daily lives, so as to reshape their characters and improve their social relationships.


Buddhist Pilgrimage
Opportunities for selected students to participate in occasional group pilgrimages
to Buddhist temples, monasteries and shrines in Asia, South and Southeast Asia, and other parts of the world. Open to highly qualified students only. Repeatable.

Group Sutra Recitation
Sequential recitation of Mahayana Sutras. One hour daily recitation of scriptures containing Buddhism’s most profound principles. Repeatable.
Mantra Practice Student will keep a daily record of reciting and/or memorizing the mantra. Repeatable.

Recitation Practice
Recitation of Amitabha Buddha’s
name and/or selected related texts and chants such as Gwan Yin Bodhisattva’s name, the Universal Door Chapter of the Dharma Flower Sutra, the sections in the Shurangama Sutra describing Gwan Yin Bodhisattva’s and Great Strength Bodhisattva’s methods of perfect penetration, the Great Compassion Mantra, and other Dharma-doors leading to rebirth in the Pure Land. Repeatable when content is new to student. See current bulletin for content.

Repentance Sessions
Active participation in intensive sessions held periodically. Attendance record required.

Chan Practice
Course includes practice of sitting in full lotus or alternative postures in any of the following formats:
1) supervised, individual practice
requiring faculty approval, observation, and evaluation. Repeatable with permission of instructor;
2) participation in an intensive meditation session during which one complies with the rules of the Chan hall and follows the group scheduled periods of meditation and walking. Attendance record required. Repeatable.

Repentance Practice
Course may include the following:
1) approved and supervised, individual or group practice using traditional repentance texts and ceremonies of Mahayana Buddhism: Attendance record required.
2) group participation requires observing the schedule and rules of the ceremonial hall. A letter grade is given.

Special Ceremonies
Study of traditional Buddhist rituals and ceremonies.

Universal Bowing
One hour of chanting and bowing in repentance every day. Instruction in the principle and practice of repentance. Attendance record required.