Our Founder

Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso is a fully accomplished meditation master and internationally renowned teacher of Buddhism. Geshe-la, as he is affectionately called by his students, is primarily responsible for the worldwide revival of Kadampa Buddhism in our time.

Geshe Kelsang holds a complete lineage of Buddha’s teachings that he received through an unbroken chain of realized masters dating back to Buddha himself. He pioneered the development of modern Buddhism in contemporary society by creating a special presentation of Buddha’s teachings that preserves their original meaning, while simultaneously making them easily accessible and relevant to the modern world.

Ordained as a Buddhist monk at eight years old, Geshe Kelsang spent 20 years in Tibetan monasteries learning to meditate and studying Buddha’s teachings. After concluding his studies and earning the prestigious title of Geshe (“virtuous spiritual friend”), he engaged in nearly 20 years of retreat where where he developed a reputation as a great meditator, with many regarding him as a modern day Mahasiddha (“accomplished master”).

In 1977, Geshe Kelsang accepted an invitation from Manjushri Centre in England to become the Resident Teacher at what was then a fledgling Buddhist centre. 

From this humble beginning at Manjushri Centre, Venerable Geshe-la has today established more than 1,200 Kadampa Meditation Centres, temples and groups in 40-plus countries. Though he has now retired from active teaching, Geshe-la continues to work tirelessly to spread precious Kadampa Buddhism teachings globally, with the intention that every living being will eventually experience the supreme inner peace of enlightenment. He is the author of more than 20 highly acclaimed books on Buddhism and meditation.