Abhidharmakosha with Acharya Kelzang Wangdi

Acharya Kelzang Wangdi

Join us for Acharya Kelzang Wangdi’s fourth year of teachings on the Eighth Karmapa’s commentary for Vasubandhu’s Treasury of Higher Knowledge (Abhidharmakośa) in Boulder, Monday, December 31, 2018 through Saturday, January 12, 2019.

This course is an in-depth study of Abhidharmakośa – the seminal work of Buddhist Abhidharma tradition – based on the commentary by the Eight Karmapa, Mikyö Dorje (1507-1554). Abhidharmakośa consists of eight chapters. The first six chapters, taught in three previous retreats, cover topics of phenomenology (skandhas, āyatanas, dhātus); the truth of suffering; the outer vessel (the world) and its inner contents (sentient beings); and karma, from which the world and its beings arise; mental afflictions, as well as the path of relinquishing afflictions.

Acharya Kelzang will be teaching the last two chapters, seven and eight, covering topics of wisdoms gained on the path, and absorptions from which the wisdoms arise. Acharya Kelzang will teach in Tibetan, with oral translation by Jules Levinson. The teachings will be presented in the format of an intensive two-week retreat.

Acharya Lama Kelzang Wangdi

Acharya Lama Kelzang Wangdi is the resident lama and spiritual leader of Kamalashila Institute, the European seat of His Holiness Ogyen Trinley Dorje near Cologne, Germany. Acharya Kelzang studied at the Karma Shri Nalanda Institute at Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim from 1989 to 2001, where he obtained a master’s degree in Buddhist philosophy and the academic title of Acharya. He began teaching junior students at Karma Shri Nalanda Institute already in 1995 and continued teaching there after graduation until 2003. He received many teachings from H.E. Gyaltsab Rinpoche, Sangye Nyenpa Rinpoche, and Dzogchen Pönlop Rinpoche on the doctrine and the practice of the buddhadharma. In the early part of 2004 Lama Kelzang Wangdi went to the USA to teach at Nitartha Institute, where he continues to teach once a year. Acharya Kelzang also teaches at various other Buddhist centers throughout Germany, France, Austria, and Switzerland.


These teachings are part of Nitartha Institute’s Advanced Curriculum and are related to the Mind and Its World III and Mind and Its World IV courses of Nitartha’s Foundation Curriculum, and to the Paths and Bhumis course of the Intermediate Curriculum. Vasubandhu’s text is one of two final texts we need taught to complete the translation of oral teachings into English for all the major texts of the Tibetan monastic college (shedra) curriculum. After 20 years of such teaching and translation effort, we are now just about to finish the first set of teachings on all these major texts, so this is another huge milestone for Nitartha!

Who can attend?

This course is offered for residential and online students. Everyone is welcome to attend the live talks for free at the Nalandabodhi center in Boulder, Colorado. It is suggested that students offer a donation for attending talks.

This course is also offered online, which makes the course recordings and any handouts available online for both residential and online students for a fee (see below). The lectures will be available in real-time webcast with the option to view or listen to the archived lectures later.

Required Text

Jewels from the Treasury: Vasubandhu’s Verses on the Treasury of Abhidharma and Its Commentary Youthful Play by the Ninth Karmapa Wangchuk Dorje, translated by David Karma Choephel, 2012, KTD Publications.

This is based on the commentary by the Eighth Karmapa, extracting the commentary specifically on Vasubandhu’s root verses.

You can order this text directly from the KTD Bookstore or on Amazon.

Costs and Registration

$100 – in-person or webcast (with online access)
$50 –  students and seniors (with online access)
free – in-person only (without online access)

Please register here.

Daily schedule

Classes will be held at Odantapuri, Nalandabodhi Boulder, and will run for two weeks, Monday through Saturday, with Sunday in the middle off.

December 31, 2018 – January 12, 2019
No class on Sunday, January 6.

10:00 am–12:00 pm

Morning Session
Lunch Break
Afternoon Session

Acharya Kelzang Wangdi teaches for practitioners, so, while the material can be detailed, he regularly connects the material to practice. However, given the specialized, detailed nature of these materials and the limited time, students who have not completed the Intermediate curriculum are kindly requested to refrain from asking questions.

You are warmly invited to attend any session of the course that fits your schedule.


Nalandabodhi Boulder
100 Arapahoe Ave. #6
Boulder,CO 80302

Phone: 720-310-0422