Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the main teacher and which lineage does Nitartha Institute belong to?2021-05-05T16:39:03-07:00
Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche is Nitartha Institute’s founder and spiritual director. Ponlop Rinpoche is acknowledged to be one of the foremost scholars of his generation in the Kagyu and Nyingma traditions of Tibetan Buddhism.

Rinpoche travels and teaches widely and is well-versed in Western culture and technology and is the founder of Nalandabodhi, a non-profit organization with centers around the world that provide a complete curriculum of study, meditation, and mindful activity, based on an authentic lineage of Buddhist teachings, that is accessible and relevant to everyday life.

Rinpoche is known for his warmth, humor, and lucid presentation of Buddhist teachings in a manner relevant to contemporary life.

Read Ponlop Rinpoche’s life story.

Are discounts available for students with limited resources?2021-05-05T16:41:40-07:00
Nitartha Institute aims to enable everyone who is interested in attending our courses to access our programs. Therefore, we established the Payment Plan and Financial Assistance (PPFA) program, which provides tuition assistance to any Nitartha participants who would not otherwise be able to attend due to financial reasons. Click here to apply.
How long does it take to complete Nitartha’s curriculum?2021-05-05T16:42:10-07:00

Nitartha’s Foundation and Intermediate curricula can be completed in 3 years by taking three Summer Institutes combined with semester or self-paced courses. Or they can be taken entirely as Self-Paced Online Courses according to your own schedule. The courses in the advanced curriculum are gradually being offered as semester courses, and will become available as self-paced courses in the near future.

How do I order the required books?2021-05-05T16:42:34-07:00
Ordering texts: Please allow plenty of time for ordering your texts: approximately 4 weeks for orders outside the United States, 1 week for orders in the United States. (For students in Europe, texts will be shipped from within Europe.)

If you have any questions, please contact us by email info@nitarthainstitute.org.

Do I have to be a student of Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche?2021-05-05T16:39:36-07:00
Nitartha is open to everyone regardless of their teacher-student relationships. Some Nitartha students are formal students of Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, some are formal students of other teachers, and some do not have a formal student-teacher relationship with one teacher.
Do I have to be familiar with Buddhist philosophy?2021-05-05T16:40:00-07:00

While there are no requirements to attend Mind & Its World I, some prior Buddhist studies would be helpful, especially knowledge about basic topics such as the Four Noble Truths, impermanence, karma, and interdependence.

Do I need to be a Buddhist in order to attend?2021-05-05T16:40:25-07:00
Nitartha Summer Institute is open to people from all types of religious backgrounds. While some of our formal practice sessions include Buddhist liturgy, you do not need to be Buddhist in order to participate.
Why are there prerequisites for some classes?2021-05-05T16:40:47-07:00
Since some of Nitartha’s classes are advanced, it is important to have the right kind of preparation in order to benefit from taking those classes. The prerequisites are designed with that in mind, to help students get the most out of their experience at Nitartha.
What is the payment and refund policy?2021-07-30T14:12:27-07:00

All payments are made in full when registering for a course, unless a PPFA (Payment Plan/Financial Assistance) is approved (see below).

Participants with limited funds can apply for a payment plan or financial assistance (PPFA). You can choose to pay in installments prior to the first class, and/or request a discount. Please click here if you would like to apply for financial assistance or an installment plan.


Semester courses: If students withdraw from a semester course, refunds will be issued before the start of the second class. No refunds are possible once the second class is held.

SPOC courses:  No refunds after the first week of registration in a SPOC course.

Is it best to start with Self-Paced Online Courses or by attending the Summer Institute?2021-05-05T16:43:56-07:00

It is best to start.

I am completely new to Buddhism. Can I attend Nitartha classes?2021-05-05T16:44:10-07:00


Go to Top