First traditional Tibetan medicine program in U.S. accepting students

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    Conway, MA – The Shang Shung Institute of America is now accepting applications for Fall 2006 enrollment in its newly created Traditional Tibetan Medicine Program. The certification program, now in its second year, follows a recent revival of Tibetan medicine in the East and marks one of the most significant advances for its preservation and practice since His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama in exile, re-established the Men-Tsee-Khang in Dharamsala, India, in 1961.

    The innovative curriculum is the first-of-its-kind in English and the only full-time, four-year traditional Tibetan medicine certification program offered in the United States. Graduates will be among the first American-trained certified practitioners and will help put the institute on the path of becoming the first fully accredited school of Tibetan medicine in the West.

    The institute also offers introductory seasonal intensives that can be applied toward certification. Limited work-study opportunities are available, and new students can apply online for both fall enrollment and summer intensives at ShangShung.org.

    Under the direction of Dr. Phuntsog Wangmo, a physician with an advanced degree from Lhasa University in Traditional Tibetan Medicine, the program closely parallels traditional training rooted in the Gyud Zhi (pronounced "gyu shee"), the fundamental text of Tibetan medicine better known as "The Four Tantras" in English. The ancient Tantras classify an amazing 1,600 types of diseases and corresponding treatments using more than 3,000 medicinal plants native to the Himalayas. The comprehensive curriculum also covers Tibetan physician ethics, medical history and language and includes clinical training, medicine preparation and Kunye massage therapy.

    With a history going back over 2,500 years, traditional Tibetan medicine is one of the oldest continuously practiced healing systems on Earth. Regarded as science, art and philosophy, it is an ancient form of holistic heath care indigenous to the Tibetan people that integrates the core Buddhist principles of altruism, karma and ethics. Initially influenced by Ayurveda, traditional Tibetan medicine evolved into a synthesis of thousands of years of accumulated empirical knowledge from China, Persia, India and Greece. It was practiced continuously in Tibet until the Chinese invasion in the 1950s and is still practiced today wherever Tibetans live in exile.
     
    Summer 2006 Intensives
    Course: Introduction to Tibetan Medical History and Fundamental Theory
    Teacher: Yang Ga, assistant professor of Tibetan medicine at Tibetan Medical College in Lhasa, Tibet and Harvard PhD candidate
    Dates: June 5-15 daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Tuition: $500 ($400 with Shang Shung membership)
    Lodging: $15 per night ($10 per night with Shang Shung membership)
     
    Course: History and Origin of the Science of Tibetan Astrology
    Teacher: Professor Chimed Rabten, a full-fledged Tibetan scholar and physician
    Dates: June 19-29 daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Tuition: $500 ($400 with Shang Shung membership)
    Lodging: $15 per night ($10 per night with Shang Shung membership)
     
    Course: Health of Body, Mind & Spirit in Tibetan Medicine
    Teacher: Dr. Kunchok Gyaltsen, Tibetan Medical Doctor and Buddhist Monk
    Dates: July 17-27 daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Tuition: $500 ($400 with Shang Shung membership)
    Lodging: $15 per night ($10 per night with Shang Shung membership)
     
    Course: Kunye Level One
    Teacher: Dr. Phuntsog Wangmo, a Tibetan-trained physician and director of the Shang Shung Institute’s Traditional Tibetan Medicine Program
    Dates: August 21-26 daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Tuition: $375 ($300 with Shang Shung membership)
    Lodging: $15 per night ($10 per night with Shang Shung membership)

    The Shang Shung Institute in America is a non-profit organization located in Conway, Mass. The Institute receives funding from members, private donors, corporate matching grants and foundations. For more information, visit ShangShung.org

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    Tim Miejan
    Tim Miejan is a writer who served as former editor and publisher of The Edge for twenty-five years. Contact him at [email protected].

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