for University Students

The Gurukul started in 1994 as a month long programme to bring together the two communities of guru (teacher) and chela (student-), and revive the centuries-old relationship of learning exchange between Indians and Tibetans.

For over 20 years, Gurukul, held annually, has been able to provide a meaningful opportunity for the university students in India to live in Dharamasala that is the home of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the headquarters of the Central Tibetan Administration. Participants receive an extended introduction to the different aspects of life of the exiled Tibetan community. It provides a unique exposure to the everyday life, culture, rituals and beliefs of a remarkable community that has shown both resilience and adaptability in the land of its refuge.  The Gurukul Programme includes:

  • An audience with H.H. the Dalai Lama and H.H. the Karmapa
  • A three-day familiarization tour of Dharamsala
  • Special sessions of discussions, lectures, and discourses with luminaries of the exile community
  • Immersion activities such as; learning a traditional Tibetan craft; song and dance
  • Classes on Buddhist philosophy and so on
  • An intensive workshop on Universal Ethics
  • Meditation sessions in the morning (weekdays) under the supervision of experienced masters

Living in the ‘sacred’ spaces of monasteries and nunneries and observing the Gurus’ (preceptors) way of life at close quarters, the participants are engaged to envision new definitions of success, achievement and fulfillment and serious engagement with the host community and also the unique experience of the diaspora in negotiating with issues of displacement, identity and survival.

The programme strives to encourage participants to critically reflect on their formal educational experiences and provoke them with incentives and motivation to enrich it with an informed altruism that benefits larger sections of humanity.