Seminar on Reading & Translating Buddhist Texts

March 9, 2018

2018 Seminar on Reading & Translating Buddhist Texts

This seven-day seminar held in the peaceful setting of a Mahayana Buddhist monastery in Ukiah, California—the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, will introduce participants to early Buddhist literature. This year, the seminar will offer eight tracks of Buddhist text translation:

(A) From Classical Chinese to English;

(B) From Sanskrit to English;

(C) From Classical Chinese or English to Spanish;

(D) From Classical Chinese or English to Portuguese;

(E) From Classical Chinese or English to Korean;

(F) From Classical Chinese or English to German;

(G) From Classical Chinese or English to French; and

(H) From Classical Chinese or English to Russian;

Working with Buddhist monastics who are experienced translators, participants will read a selected work and related commentaries.

Video from 2016 Seminar

Seminar Outcomes

• Read and translate a selected Chinese or Sanskrit Buddhist text

• Use key reference tools for the study and translation of Buddhist texts

• Attend daily meditation and ceremonies

• Participate in other activities of interest


1.     Those applying to (A) should have at least one year of Classical Chinese before applying. A limited number of exceptions will be granted to interested applicants to (A) who are qualified in other ways.

2.     Students who apply to (B) should have learned basic Sanskrit grammar and have some experience reading texts beyond a primer.

3.     Those applying to (C), (D), (E), (F), (G), or (H) should either be native speakers or have some experience reading literary texts. Knowledge of English, Chinese, and Buddhism are preferred but not required.

Knowledge of Buddhist history and philosophy is helpful, but not required. Applications will be accepted based on suitability.

Suggested Donation

$165.00 (food, lodging, and materials)


Faculty Profiles

Our faculty come from a variety of backgrounds and hold varying academic degrees. For bios of selected faculty members, see below (listed alphabetically by their first names):



Special Lecturers

Program Coordinator

Bhikshuni Heng Yi was ordained in 1995 under the guidance of the late Venerable Master Hsuan Hua. She holds an MA in Asian Studies from California State University - Long Beach, and a PhD in Buddhist Studies from UCLA. Since 2011, she has been an Assistant Professor at Dharma Realm Buddhist University, teaching courses on Mahayana sutras and shastras. She has been a translator, reviewer, and translation team leader for the Buddhist Text Translation Society. She aspires to help develop a Buddhist Text Translation Institute as a space for those with talent in languages to be trained and to translate Buddhist texts as a form of spiritual practice.


For more information, please contact