Film Screening | In Honor of Dalai Lama’s Visit to DC

unnamed (5)In honor of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s visit to Washington DC, the Tibet Governance Project screened the award winning film The Cup on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 4pm.
The Cup is the story of a group of young monks from a remote Himalayan monastery desperately trying to find a television to watch the World Cup final. The atmosphere of serene contemplation in the monastery is disrupted by soccer fever, the chief instigator being a young student, the soccer enthusiast Orgyen. Prevented by various circumstances from seeing the Cup finals on television in a nearby village, Orgyen sets out to organize the rental of a TV set for the monastery. The enterprise becomes a test of solidarity, resourcefulness and friendship for the students, while the Lama, head of the monastery, contemplates the challenges of teaching the word of Buddha in a rapidly changing world. The film is based on true events of a time when the World Cup came to the filmmaker’s remote village via satellite dish. This is a film packed with universal themes of tradition vs modernity and the value of human endeavor. The Cup is one of the first films made in the Tibetan language.

Training of the Mind and Tibetan Contemplative Practices in Historical and Comparative Context

The Tibet Governance Project and the GW Mind-Brain Institute hosted Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro, abbot of Larung Gar of Serthar, Tibet, for a seminar at the Sigur Center for Asian Studies.

Screen Shot 2016-05-27 at 7.09.25 AM.png

Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro, Abbot of Serthar Larung Gar

Moderated by Eyal Aviv, Assistant Professor, Department of Religion

Friday, May 27, 2016 from 1-3pm

5th floor Seminar Room, Sigur Center for Asian Studies


Dialogue on Science and Buddhist Thought

unnamed (1)

Thought Leaders and Civic Space in  Contemporary Tibet

khenpo tsultrim lodroThe Tibet Governance Project at the Elliott School of International Affairs was honored to host prominent Buddhist scholar and dynamic public thinker Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro as part of the Research Initiative on Thought Leaders and Civic Space in Contemporary Tibet.

The public dialogue was held at the GW Jack Morton Auditorium on Thursday, May 26th from 6.30-8.30pm, featuring Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro in conversation with cognitive scientist Dr. Elissa Eppel  of UCSF School of Medicine, and Professor Tadeusz Zawidzki, chair of the Philosophy department at GW and co-convener of the GW Mind-Brain Institute.  

Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro is a distinguished Buddhist scholar and dynamic lecturer and public thinker inside contemporary Tibet. As abbot of Larung Gar Buddhist Academy in eastern Tibet, Khenpo is part of the core leadership of the world’s largest residential Buddhist community.  Khenpo has lectured widely to both Tibetan and Chinese audiences on ethics, civic life and contemplative practice while leading a public conversation inside Tibet on language revitalization, HIV/AIDS awareness and Tibetan vegetarianism. One of the most provocative public commentators on Tibetan civic life today, Khenpo has been deeply committed to expanding a dialogue between modern science and Buddhist philosophy.

Exploring Limits: A Conversation with Shidé Nyima

Shide Nyima talk short

Filmmaker and comedian Shidé Nyima with Tashi Rabgey (L) and Lugyal Bum (R)

By Tashi Rabgey

Shidé Nyima is one of the most dynamic cultural producers in contemporary Tibet.  A prominent comedian, writer, producer and filmmaker, he is a pioneer in Tibetan-language television, and is a prolific writer of song lyrics, comedy sketches, and poetry.  He has won several awards for his achievements in poetry, stage, and film.  Most recently he has won acclaim for his title role in Pema Tseden’s award-winning THARLO (2015), including Best Actor award from the Shanghai Film Critics Awards, and a nomination for Best Actor in the 9th Asia Pacific Film Awards.  He was recently based in Washington DC as a Tibetan Artist in Residence with the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.  This was Shidé Nyima’s first visit to the United States.

There is a moment in Shidé Nyima’s vivid documentary of a young Tibetan shepherd that appears to get to the bottom of things:  a young woman stares off into the distance as she reassures her brother that he can carry on with his studies as she has taken on the burden of tending the family livestock; he barely manages to acknowledge her as he focuses intensely on his book.  For many at last night’s George Washington University screening of Tsezung Lhamo, the gender gap evident in this long and meticulously captured moment was a distillation of the broader message of gender inequality of the film. 

Or was that the case?
Read the rest of this entry »

Film Screening with Shidéy Nyima

The Tibet Governance Project at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs presents:

An Evening with Shidéy Nyima

Film Screening and Discussion

Tsezung Lhamo, A New Feature Documentary from Tibet
A film that examines Tibetan experience at the crossroads of tradition and modernity

ShideNyimaposter Read the rest of this entry »

A creative force opens new spaces for Tibetan women

ani choyingBlogpost by Tenzin Wangmo

Ani Choying Drolma, the “Rock Star Nun” and renowned Tibetan performing artist, spoke at the Tibet Governance Project of the Elliott School on Tuesday, March 29 on “Gender, Faith and Public Performance.” 

Drawing on her unique experience as a nun in a non-traditional role, Ani Choying engaged in a frank and candid conversation with an enthralled audience. The issues she raised, ranging from mental illness and gender discrimination to health and spiritual wellbeing, provided insight into the personal journey of a dynamic creative force. 

Read the rest of this entry »

Gender, Faith and Public Performance in Contemporary Tibetan Society

The Tibet Governance Project at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs presents:

Gender, Faith and Public Performance
in Contemporary Tibetan Society:
A Front Line Perspective

Seminar with Ani Choying Drolma

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E Street NW Room 503
Washington, DC 20052

Click here to RSVP

Ani Choying Drolma is a Buddhist nun and musician from the Nagi Gompa Nunnery in Nepal. She is known in Nepal and throughout the world for bringing many Tibetan Buddhist chants and feast songs to the mainstream audience. She is the UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador to Nepal, and has been involved in several humanitarian works including the education of young girls, care of older people, and providing medical services for the underprivileged through Ani Foundation.

Pedagogy in Religious Studies in Contemporary Tibet: The Kagyu Tradition at Larung Gar Buddhist Academy

mmexport1445098982997 Khenpo Jamyang Gyaltsen, Director of Kagyu Tradition at Larung Gar, Serthar, Tibet


Monday, March 28, 2016


Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E Street NW Room 503
Washington, DC 20052

Click here to RSVP

Khenpo Jamyang Gyaltsen is the director of training for the Kagyu tradition at the Larung Gar Buddhist Academy in Serthar county of Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture.  He is currently one of the main teachers at Larung Gar, which is the largest monastic institution in Tibet.  Originally from Nyarong, Khenpo joined Tshokha monastery at 17 before spending several years in meditation.  He was an attendant to Khenchen Jigme Phuntsok and traveled to India in 2002 where he was designated by 17th Karmapa, head of the Karma Kagyu tradition, to oversee the reconstruction of monasteries in Kham.


The visit of Khenpo Jamyang Gyaltsen to GWU is in conjunction with Columbia University Modern Tibetan Studies. Khenpo’s visit to GW is supported by Machik, the Global Gender Program and Sigur Center for Asian Studies.

Seminar on Cultural Politics of Tibet in the PRC

Drifting in the Mirage of Tibetan Landscape: Geopoetics, Buddhist Spirituality and Materialism in China

Dan Smyer Yu, Distinguished Professor at Yunnan Minzu University

Friday, January 29, 2016 at 4 – 5pm

Elliott School of International Affairs
Read the rest of this entry »

Public Lecture: HIV/AIDs Education in Tibet

Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 12.13.31 AM

On November 16, the Tibet Governance Project at the Elliott School of International Affairs hosted a talk by Chupal Sangpo, one of the most important frontline figures in community building in Tibet today. Mr. Sangpo delivered a riveting talk about his years of experience empowering Tibetans through public health education, challenges faced along the way, and how he has built a grassroots health movement to combat spread of HIV/AIDS on the plateau. Around 20 people attended the talk including some students from School of Public Health who showed interest in collaborating with Chusang for future projects.