So… what’s the point of the new shedra cycle?
Many of us have known Rinpoche for a long time, attended many advanced courses and have a feeling of being with the Dharma pretty long. So is it worth going back to study the basics now?
Rinpoche opened the shedra study programme to give the students a complete and gradual path to the Dharma. He strongly insisted on thoroughly studying the sutras and many fundamental points of the path.
It was and is clear:
If you seriously wish to study the Dharma,
you should start from the very beginning.
What is more, Rinpoche put a lot of effort to prepare the books for us, learn English and develop the syllabus. As we all know he is a shrewd cookie and wouldn’t waste his time if it wasn’t essential.
Rinpoche opened the first cycle in 2005, the second in 2007 and a while later, in 2011, the third cycle. There were no right conditions to open any new cycles until now.
Many students joined the 3d shedra cycle over the years. Nevertheless, many of them skipped the first years. The question is: was skipping year one or year two a speck of luck or rather unluck, as certain teachings were not transmitted?
Being a student of the first cycle, following nearly 20 years, year after year I deeply appreciate the shedra course and especially its hard first years. It is vital to get the complete set of teachings and it is relevant to our full understanding of Rinpoche’s idea and endeavours. I recommend the new shedra course to everybody: seasoned practitioners, all those exploring various Dharma courses and especially the real beginners.