Slide thumbnail
Institute I – Fall Meeting (3-weeks)
September 3rd to 20th, 2019
Slide thumbnail
Institute II – Spring Meeting (1-week)
March 2nd to 7th, 2020
Slide thumbnail
10-Day Introductory Science Workshop – “What is Life?”
Kopan Nunnery, Nepal : April 24 to May 4, 2019
Slide thumbnail
5-Day Introductory Science Workshop – “The Senses”
Kopan Nunnery, Nepal: July 29 to August 2, 2018

Science Leadership for Nuns

1st Leadership Cohort

In September, 2019, we recruited a volunteer group of 33 nuns from five different nunneries that will receive 3-years of support and training. Bi-annual institutes and nun-driven projects will provide a structure for these nun-leaders to do things, to grow their confidence and lead with vision. Nuns, as leaders of science, through the activities they facilitate, will further the dialogue with science started by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, take on new education and community development initiatives, and overall improve and strengthen monastic education.

Institute II – Spring Meeting (1-week)

March 2nd to 7th, 2020
Library of Tibetan Works and Archives

Faculty

Tanya Baker, National Writing Project

Institute I – Fall Meeting (3-weeks)

September 3rd to 20th, 2019
Library of Tibetan Works and Archives

Faculty

Tanya Baker, National Writing Project
Sonia Galaviz, National Writing Project
Lori Lambertson, Exploratorium
Hilleary Osheroff, Exploratorium

Exploratory Workshops at Kopan Nunnery, Kathmandu

Intensive introductory workshops have reached 40 scholarly nuns, all philosophy students at Kopan Nunnery. The purpose of the workshops are to help introduce basic principles of science, explore scientific practices and provide a baseline foundation for future learning and activities. Kopan Nunnery is located in Kathmandu and with more than 400 nuns is the largest nunnery in Nepal.

10-Day Introductory Science Workshop –  “What is Life?”

April 24 to May 4, 2019

Faculty

Julie Yu, Exploratorium
Tory Brady, Exploratorium

5-Day Introductory Science Workshop –  “The Senses”

July 29 to August 2, 2018

Faculty

David Presti, UC Berkeley
Bryce Johnson, Science for Monks & Nuns

Nuns, mostly from Gelug nunneries in India, have been involved in nearly all our programs since 2008. But until 2017, nuns never comprised more than about 20% of the participating monastics in any one year. In 2017, we organized our first all-nuns program, a 4-week introductory workshop (see more…) and a 3-day conference (see more…)

“There are interesting differences and similarities in science and Buddhism. For example, a similarity is the concept of interdependence among all organisms and a difference is that science claims that mental functions are carried out by the nervous system.”

Tenzin Youdon
Monastic Graduate (Nun) Participant
(September, 2017)

The nun’s want to have the same leadership trainings as the monks, and Buddhist nuns can play an essential role in helping to strengthen and modernize this vibrant thousand-year-old learning community. We have an enduring vision of a growing and energetic network of nun science leaders that are actively shaping activities that infuse scientific inquiry while simultaneously leveraging the wisdom and practices of their learning tradition.


Some of the major Nunneries in India, Nepal, and Bhutan (we hope to reach)

Science for monks & nuns

 In 2016, after nearly 30 years of the Dalai Lama’s pushing for reform, the first Gelug nuns in India graduated with geshe degrees (equivalent of a PhD degree), and a few science questions were part of their final exam. Enough nuns in India have now been involved with science to establish an opportunity, a demand, and the nuns themselves have requested more opportunities, including an all-nuns leadership program. Nuns constitute about 10% of the overall monastic population.