The Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT) is a network of Buddhist centers focusing on the Gelugpa tradition of Tibet. Buddhism is a family of beliefs and practices The Gelug or Gelug-pa, also known as the Yellow Hat sect, is a school of Buddhism founded by Tsongkhapa (1357–1419 a Philosopher Definitions of Tibet See also Definitions of Tibet Name In English The English word Tibet, like the word for Tibet in most European Founded in 1975 by Lama Thubten Yeshe and Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche, who began teaching Buddhism to Western students in Nepal, the FPMT has grown to encompass 150 teaching centers, projects, and social services in 33 countries. Thubten Yeshe (1935–1984 was a Tibetan Lama who while exiled in Nepal, co-founded Kopan Monastery (1969 and the Foundation for the Preservation Thubten Zopa Rinpoche (born 1946) is a Lama from Thami, a village in the Khumbu region of Nepal. Nepal (नेपाल) is a Landlocked country in South Asia. Since the death (and subsequent reincarnation) of Lama Yeshe in 1984, the FPMT's spiritual director has been his colleague, Lama Zopa.
The FPMT's international headquarters are in Portland, Oregon (USA). Portland is a city located in the Northwestern United States, near the Confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers The central office has previously been located at:
In addition, the FPMT has numerous local centers in various countries around the world. Taos (ˈtaʊs is a town in Taos County in the north-central region of New Mexico. Soquel (soʊˈkɛl is a Census-designated place (CDP in Santa Cruz County, California, United States. The Land of Medicine Buddha is one of the FPMT ( Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition) centers which is located in the Santa Cruz Mountains Kathmandu (काठमांडौ येँ is the Capital and the largest city of Nepal. Kopan Monastery is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery near Boudhanath, on the outskirts of Kathmandu, Nepal. Activity is most visible within Nepal and India (especially within their subculture of Western backpackers), Australia and New Zealand, the USA and Canada, Europe, Mongolia, and among the ethnic Chinese communities of Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, and Malaysia. See the FPMT website for a full listing. 
The name and structure of the FPMT date to 1975, in the wake of an international teaching tour by Lamas Yeshe and Zopa. However, the two had been teaching Western travelers since at least 1965, when they met Zina Rachevsky, their student and patron, in Darjeeling. Darjeeling ( Nepali:) is a town in the Indian state of West Bengal. In 1969, the three of them founded the Nepal Mahayana Gompa Centre (now Kopan Monastery). Kopan Monastery is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery near Boudhanath, on the outskirts of Kathmandu, Nepal. Rachevsky died shortly afterwards, during a Buddhist retreat.
Over the next few years (the early 1970's), hundreds of Westerners attended teachings by Lama Yeshe in Nepal. Historical descriptions and recollections routinely characterize early Western participants as hippies--backpackers on extended overland tours of Asia, often with a penchant for recreational drugs and alternative lifestyles--to whom Lama Yeshe's style of discourse especially appealed. The Hippie Subculture was originally a Youth movement that began in the United States during the early 1960s and spread around the world (See "hippie trail". The hippie trail is a term used to describe the journeys taken by Hippies and others in the 1960s and 1970s from Europe, overland to and from eastern Asia )
In December of 1973, Lama Yeshe ordained fourteen Western monks and nuns under the name of the International Mahayana Institute. Around this time, Lama Yeshe's students began returning to their own countries. The result was the founding of an ever-increasing number of dharma centers.
In his description of the FPMT, Jeffrey Paine (see bibliography) emphasizes the charisma, intuition, drive, and organizational ability of Lama Yeshe. Paine asks us to consider how a refugee with neither financial resources nor language skills could manage to create an international network with more than a hundred centers and study groups.
David N. Kay (see bibliography) makes the following observation:
As a result, says Kay, at the same time that the FPMT was consolidating its structure and practices, several local groups and teachers defected, founding independent networks. Geshe Loden of Australia's Chenrezig Institute left the FPMT in 1979. More consequentially, Geshe Kelsang Gyatso and his students caused the Manjushri Institute--the FPMT's flagship center in England--to sever its FPMT ties. Kelsang Gyatso is a Buddhist Monk, Gelug teacher (scholar and author of 21 Buddhist books based on the works of Buddha Shakyamuni and Je At issue was whether the centers and their students ought to identify primarily with Lama Yeshe, local teachers, the Gelugpa tradition, or Tibetan Buddhism as a whole. The FPMT now asks its lamas to sign a "Geshe Agreement" which make explicit the organization's expectations. (Complicating the latter dispute was controversy over Dorje Shugden; the FPMT has accepted the Dalai Lama's ban on the worship of this deity. See also Dorje Shugden controversy, Dorje Shugden ( Chinese 多杰雄登 or 多杰修丹 " Vajra Possessing Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso (born Lhamo Döndrub ( 6 July 1935 in Qinghai) He is the head of the Tibetan government-in-exile )
Lama Yeshe's death in 1984 led to his succession as spiritual director by Lama Zopa Rinpoche. In 1986, a Spanish boy named Ösel Hita Torres (later Tenzin Ösel Rinpoche) was identified as the tulku of Lama Yeshe. Tenzin Ösel Rinpoche ( was born in 1985 in Bubion, Granada, to Spanish parents who had been students of Lama Thubten Yeshe. A tulku ( also tülku, trulku) is a Tibetan Buddhist Lama who has through Phowa and Siddhi, consciously In 2005 the FPMT projected that Lama Ösel would "again take on the position as Director of the Organization once he has finished his formal monastic studies. " ; Lama Ösel apparently affirmed the sentiment as recently as 2006. 
The FPMT is a federation of dharma centers. A Dharma centre is a non monastic Buddhist centre in the community Each center is separately incorporated and locally financed, but follows common policies and spiritual guidance.
There is no such thing as FPMT "membership" for individuals, although many centers offer local membership. (The "Membership Area" of the FPMT's website is restricted to center directors, board members, and other officers. )
The FPMT is headed by a board of directors, with its spiritual director (presently Lama Zopa) as an ex officio member. The FPMT International Office represents the board's executive function. The president / CEO of the FPMT is currently (2008) Ven. Roger Kunsang.
FPMT centers have their own local boards, which appoint center directors with the approval of the International Board. Centers also have a spiritual program director and in many cases, a resident geshe (and perhaps other sangha as well). Geshe (Tib dge bshes, "virtuous knowledge/wisdom" cognate of Skt
The center directors and spiritual directors from various countries meet every 12 to 18 months as the Council for the Preservation for the Mahayana Tradition (CPMT), in order to deliberate points of mutual concern. Its role is advisory to the International Board, although the CPMT actually predates it (1978 vs. 1983).
Lines of authority within the FPMT are complicated by the fact that many of its officers are devoted to Lama Zopa (or others) on the basis of tantric vows, or a formal teacher-student relationship. The organization stipulates that
The Dalai Lama is credited with the honorary role of "inspiration and guide. Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso (born Lhamo Döndrub ( 6 July 1935 in Qinghai) He is the head of the Tibetan government-in-exile " 
Students often first encounter the FPMT via short courses and retreats held at the various centers. The prototype of these is Kopan Monastery's annual month-long meditation course, offered since 1971. Kopan Monastery is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery near Boudhanath, on the outskirts of Kathmandu, Nepal. Meditation is a mental discipline by which one attempts to get beyond the conditioned "thinking" mind into a deeper state of relaxation or awareness
Many FPMT centers have adopted standardized curricula, whose modules may also be obtained on DVD for external study. The three sequences were separately developed, and thus are only loosely correlated with one another. They are as follows:
Students desiring more advanced study have a number of options including:
In addition, numerous centers are prepared to supervise a meditation retreat. The term retreat has several related meanings all of which have in common the notion of safety or temporarily removing oneself from one's usual environment in order to become immersed
Wisdom Publications, now a well-known publisher of Buddhist books, originated in Delhi during the late 1970's under editor Nicholas Ribush. Its first publication was Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa's Wisdom Energy.  The publisher began formal operations in London in 1983 (after several years operating out of the Manjushri Institute), with Jeffrey Hopkins' Meditation on Emptiness (1983) as an early perennial. It moved again to Boston in 1988, under director Timothy McNeill. The press offers both academic and popular Buddhist literature from all traditions of Buddhism, as well as translations of classic Buddhist literature. Especially noteworthy are its encyclopedia-style project, the 32-volume Library of Tibetan Classics (developed by Thupten Jinpa, English-language translator for the Dalai Lama); and the Teachings of the Buddha series of translations of the Pali Nikāyas.
Since 1995, the FPMT has published a glossy magazine called Mandala (now bimonthly).
The Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive--which holds copyright to the speeches and writings of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa--is one of the FPMT's member organizations. It transcribes teachings by these and other lamas, and produces edited booklets for free distribution. Its director is Nicholas Ribush.
The Maitreya Project is an undertaking by the FPMT to build a 152 meter statue of the Maitreya Bodhisattva in Kushinagara, India. The Maitreya Project is an international organisation operating since 1990set up to construct a 152 metre (500 ft statue of the Maitreya Buddha, in Kushinagar Maitreya ( Sanskrit) or Metteyya ( Pāli) is a future Buddha of this world in Buddhist eschatology. In the Buddhist context a bodhisattva (बोधिसत्त्व bodhisattva;; Vietnamese Bồ Tát; बोधिसत्त bodhisatta India, officially the Republic of India (भारत गणराज्य inc-Latn Bhārat Gaṇarājya; see also other Indian languages) is a country 
FPMT maintains many charitable projects, including funds to build holy objects, translate Tibetan texts into many languages, offer support to Tibetan and non-Tibetan Sangha, offer medical care, food and so forth to underprivileged people in Tibet, India, Mongolia, etc. , re-establish Tibetan Buddhism in Mongolia, protect animals, and more. See the FPMT website for more information on its projects.
Jeffrey Paine, commenting glowingly on the FPMT's various projects, writes:
Peter Moran, less sanguine, reports controversy over the appropriateness of the statue, as well as other aspects of fund-raising and expenditure, which he attributes to the differing cultural expectations of Westerners, Tibetans, and ethnic Chinese (who apparently contribute the majority of funds).