The first ever online version of the Meditation Instructor Training created by Pema Khandro was completed last weekend. This course has been taught in a variety of formats over the last fifteen years, a ninety-day course, a twenty-one day retreat, a once a month year-long retreat, and now as an online training. Participants completed 60 hours of training. (Read more about the training here – Pema Khandro’s Meditation Teacher Training.) This included daily meditation practice and lessons led by Assistant Teachers, Satya Shiva and Aruna Rigdzin, as well as a daily teaching on meditation led by Pema Khandro Rinpoche. The lessons focused on the practice of Calm Abiding Meditation and the science of mind in Buddhist thought.
Twenty-one lessons focused on the practice of Calm Abiding Meditation, known as Zhine in Tibetan or Shamatha in Sanskrit. It included lessons on what is mind, the stages of meditation, techniques for Calm Abiding Meditation, breathing practices for warm-ups for meditation, ethics for teaching, teaching methodology and more. There were extensive weekly exams on the material and weekend workshops on teaching. The weekend workshops were interactive for the trainees using the online format. This gave them an opportunity to see each other, receive feedback on teaching and dialogue as a group. They also completed daily meditation journals throughout the course.
There were extensive weekly exams on the material and weekend workshops on teaching. The weekend workshops were interactive for the trainees using the online format. This gave them an opportunity to see each other, receive feedback and dialogue as a group. They also had daily meditation journals.
One of the surprising elements of the course is the bond formed by all the participants, who practiced together, wrote and read each other’s daily meditation journals, met in workshops and supported each other through the teaching exams.
Twenty-students began the course and sixteen students finished. They were offered the choice to finish the final requirement, which was a teaching practicum, within the month-long period of the training or to take three months to finish it. Four students finished it within the first month and graduated. Twelve more students will have until August to complete their practicum. The practicum required the trainees to teach three meditation classes in an underserved community. This included classes for people suffering from anxiety and trauma, classes for youth with behavioral challenges, classes for mothers in a small town in Bali and classes for people with chronic stress.
Congratulations to the four graduates and best wishes to the twelve students as they complete their practicum.