Center for Wisdom & Compassion – Tong-Nyi Nying-Je Ling – is a Tibetan-Buddhist Center offering classes, courses and retreats on Buddhism and Buddhist Meditation with world renowned practitioners and scholars in the heart of Copenhagen.
The center is affiliated with The Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition and follows the spiritual direction of Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
Our Brief History
The center was founded by Lise Lotte Brooks and Maria Damsholt in 1996 after meeting with Lama Zopa Rinpoche at Jamyang Centre in London that year. Rinpoche liked the idea of a center in Copenhagen, Denmark and gave the burgeoning group a name: Tong-nyi Nying-je Ling, the Center for Wisdom and Compassion. From the very beginning, the center started a volunteer hospice service, Pure Land of Medicine Buddha, which has been very active and helped numerous people to a peaceful passing. The center also includes a small publishing house, Dharma Wisdom, with six books translated and published in Danish.
Activities in the Center
The center has activities most days, presenting and practicing the Dharma in many ways, including classes on meditation and Tibetan Buddhism. These are the regular programs taught mainly by various teachers and experienced students. We also lead the traditional Buddhist practices such as pujas as well as introductory FPMT courses. We also host many weekend courses with visiting teachers. By having this variety of activities, the center tries to hold several different gateways open for introducing people to the Dharma while still offering more advanced courses for experienced students.
The Value of Volunteers
One of the main reasons for many people being able to come to the center and benefit from the teachings and meditation is the collective effort of the many volunteers running the center. All of the people working for the center are volunteers. That Tong-nyi Nying-je Ling is able to run the center on a volunteer basis shows how dedicated and how important many people find the center to be. Monthly volunteer meetings are held where the volunteer groups organize themselves and initiate many projects. Although things are discussed between the volunteers and with the board before projects are initiated, we have found it to be a great strength to give the volunteer groups freedom to work fairly independently as this really empowers people and makes them feel trusted.
Harmony as Our Strategy
Before we had a teacher we wondered why people kept on coming to the center. They did not come to receive great teachings; inexperienced as we were, we could not offer that. However, we soon realized that the harmonious and welcoming atmosphere we created around our weekly Dharma evenings attracted many people. Harmony has for years been top of the list of our annual strategy plan. We truly believe harmony to be the most powerful means for success and growth.
How is Harmony Maintained?
As most staff in Dharma centers will know, we tend to get attached to things being in a certain way. That is natural. The Dharma is precious to us. However, the result is that our ego starts to play a role in the way we think, speak and act in the center. More than one ego tends to create friction, in Dharma centers. To counteract this Tong-nyi Nying-je Ling starts any meeting with the clear motivation of only thinking, speaking and acting according to what will help the center and its users. We strive to park our egos outside the center door.
Our center has always been gifted with many young people. They bring much fresh and positive energy. For years it has been part of our strategy to keep on attracting youth. How do we do that? We have purposely included young people on our board for years. That brings the young energy into the core of the center. It also results in decisions and activities that attract more young people. When new young people come to the center for the first time, we make an effort to speak with them and try to include them in our activities.
The Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition
FPMT is an international, non-profit organization, founded in 1975 by Lama Thubten Yeshe (1935-84), a Tibetan Buddhist monk. The Foundation is devoted to the transmission of the Mahayana Buddhist tradition and values worldwide through teaching, meditation, and community service. The Center for Wisdom & Compassion is a part of this organisation.
FPMT provides integrated education through which people’s minds and hearts can be transformed into their highest potential for the benefit of others, inspired by an attitude of universal responsibility. The organization is committed to creating harmonious environments and helping all beings develop their full potential of infinite wisdom and compassion. Our organization is based on the Buddhist tradition of Lama Tsongkhapa of Tibet as taught to us by our founder Lama Thubten Yeshe and spiritual director Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
FPMT a Documentary
This Documentary is a Work in Progress that explores the history and future of FPMT and the Mahayana Tradition.
Every living being has the potential to be free from suffering and to develop limitless love and compassion for others. Working to help human beings fulfill this potential are the FPMT meditation, retreat and study centers, monasteries, publishing houses, businesses and students. The FPMT strives to follow the example and inspiration of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in his compassionate service to humanity.
FPMT students try to serve others throughout the world with kindness and wisdom. We are a rapidly growing non-profit organization participating in many aspects of the world community. Some of the projects which are affiliated with FPMT are: