Our Philosophy of Education

Liberal Education at DRBU

When universities were first created, they were meant to embrace and portray an endless and vast vision, an expanse that encompasses humanity and stretches throughout the universe. That is why a “university” is so named. The Buddhist phrasing for this notion of the universe is Dharma Realm, while the word buddha simply means “awakening.” Hence, the name Dharma Realm Buddhist University expresses an Eastern rendering for the same idea: the university as a place devoted to understanding ourselves, the nature of the wider universe and its workings, and our place in it.

Dharma Realm Buddhist University, founded in 1976, is a small private school dedicated to liberal education in the broad Buddhist tradition. read more

Towards a Classics Curriculum

The seminal texts of both Eastern and Western traditions continue to shed light on the persisting inquiries, challenges, and possibilities of human existence. They come embedded with sophisticated methods of deep questioning, testing, and affirming. The highest inspirations and cautionary limitations of the human condition find their clearest and most thoughtful expression in these enduring works. They are both timeless and timely. What have come to be known as the “classics” represent humanity’s rich legacy of thought, debate, and insight into the abiding issues that confront humankind. At DRBU deep engagement with primary texts from both East and West and an integrated approach to learning constitute the core curriculum. read more

Learning through Shared Inquiry

The individual student, each in his or her own way, needs to question and be questioned. The pedagogical goal—the rationale for the texts, curricular strands, writing, discussion, supplementary lectures, laboratory materials, contemplative exercises, and language tutorials—all center on arriving at one goal: the students’ knowing for and through themselves. While a direct encounter with primary texts is essential for achieving these desired outcomes, it is not in itself sufficient. How does one know? What is required to truly “know thyself”? read more