Nagaloka Centre is the home of the Nagarjuna Training Institute, which offers a one-year residential training program in Buddhism and Social Action for young men and women from all over India. The goal of the program is to train people in meditation, Dhamma and social action so they can return to their home regions and share their knowledge of the Dhamma and help create a society free of caste and discrimination.
The Buddhism and Social Action training program is a full-time residential course for 80 to 100 men and women. Students attend daily classes, participate in cultural activities, visit social projects in Nagpur, and learn meditation and Dhamma.
The Nagarjuna Training Institute is the only program of its kind in India. Students come from many different states and caste communities all over India to develop their skills, confidence and friendships. Having grown up in some of the most deprived and oppressed situations in the world, these young people often feel that the year of Dhamma practice and coursework completely transforms them and gives them a new vision of life. Many alumni are active in their communities, teaching the Dhamma and establishing social projects.
Benefits of Training
The training at NTI provides students with a very special opportunity to learn about the Dhamma and develop skills that will allow them to benefit their communities. They develop confidence in themselves and confidence in the Dhamma and Dr. Ambedkar’s great vision of just society.
The different Scheduled caste communities in India do not usually cooperate with each other, even after they have become Buddhists. At the Nagarjuna Institute they relate to each other just as Buddhists and not in terms of the caste they have come from, and they gradually cease to identify with the old Untouchable castes. This is an enormous contribution to a truly democratic society.
Students who complete the training are able to share their experience with many people in their villages and towns. The ex-students participate in the Nagaloka Alumni Association, a network covering over 19 states in India that helps to organize local activities, retreats and lecture tours. Through this work they make a very significant contribution to the development of Buddhism in India.
A number of ex-students have started social projects. For example, a group of the first students started two hostels in Tamil Nadu for children who suffered from the Tsunami.
Who Should Attend?
The Buddhism and Social Action training program is open to people from all over India who want to create a New India based on liberty, equality and fraternity. These are the ideals that Dr. Ambedkar derived from his master, The Buddha.
Students should be interested in learning about Dhamma, the thought of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, and social activism.
The program requires hard work and commitment from all students, so candidates should be ready to set aside all study and family responsibilities for one year. The daily routine at the Nagarjuna Training Institute includes morning and evening Pujas as well as work, study and class periods.
Eligibility is primarily for people who are:
- H.S.C appeared
- Minimum age of 18 years
- Interested in social activism
- Conversant in Hindi language
- Preference is given to candidates from outside of Maharashtra.