Loading Events

« All Courses

Stars at Dawn: Deepening Our Connections with Our Buddhist Foremothers
Dates: Oct 10, 2021 - Nov 14, 2021
Online Course

Instructor(s): Wendy Garling

Course Navigation


Our foremothers root us to our own beginnings. We are the branches and the fruit that arise from the gifts they have left us. But what if we never knew them, their stories or what wisdom they would share? For today’s Buddhist practitioners reconnecting with our foremothers is long overdue. 

Join author Wendy Garling for an in-depth, six-week study of Stars at Dawn: Forgotten Stories of Women in the Buddha’s Life (Shambhala, 2016). Through individual reading and group discussion we’ll explore the stories and hear the voices of the women who lived and practiced at the dawn of Buddhism, drawing from Wendy’s extensive research over more than a decade into overlooked Pāli and Sanskrit sources. Through re-telling these remarkable narratives obscured by millennia of Buddhist patriarchy, we’ll discover the tremendous sacrifices, commitments, and contributions the first generation of lay and monastic women brought to the Buddha’s original purpose of establishing an equal four-fold community of dharma practitioners. As active participants, these first women helped lay the very foundations of Buddhism. As the foremothers of women from all Buddhist schools, they re-emerge in today‘s readings as women whose struggles we can relate to and whose wisdom we can learn from. Join us in remembering and celebrating our Buddhist foremothers as we embrace them in our practices and restore them to their rightful place in Buddhism’s rich heritage.

Online Course: This course will be hosted on the Zoom video conferencing platform and closed captions are available. Our intention is to build sangha and provide meaningful virtual interactions with each other and with teachers in our online programs. When registering for this course, please plan to attend as many sessions as possible. 

Meeting Time: Sundays, 2:30 – 4:00 pm EST between October 10 and November 14

Meeting Dates: October 10, 17, 24, 31, November 7, 14

Please check the time of the group meetings in your timezone here, and please note that sessions will not be recorded.

Registration fees for online courses are nonrefundable after the course start date. Cancellations prior to the start date of the course will incur a $25 admin fee. Thank you for your understanding.

As we work to become a more inclusive, equitable, and diverse community, we invite feedback/suggestions you may have regarding ways that we can make participation in the program more accessible and welcoming; please email us at contact@buddhistinquiry.org.

  • Wendy Garling is a writer, mother, independent scholar, and authorized dharma teacher with a BA from Wellesley College and an MA in Sanskrit language and literature from the University of California, Berkeley. A Tibetan Buddhist practitioner since her twenties, she took refuge with His Holiness the 16th Karmapa and studied for many years under the kind guidance of her root lama, the late Geshe Acharya Thubten Loden. She is the author of the critically acclaimed Stars at Dawn: Forgotten Stories of Women in the Buddha's Life (2016, Shambhala), and has recently completed her second book, The Woman Who Raised the Buddha: The Extraordinary Life of Mahaprajapati (March 2021, Shambhala).

Calendar powered by The Events Calendar