“You have a lot of merit, as you have the fortune to learn both the worldly system and the religious system, which is like possessing two open eyes. This wisdom is your inner Buddha. The actual Dharma is love. Everyone needs love. If you truly understand the Dharma, you will generate great love and thus experience great happiness. Thank you for coming and supporting the center.”

~From Garchen Rinpoche to those that are visiting our center for the first time.

Sangha 2012



I cannot sit on the floor, will I be able to sit in a chair?
We sit on cushions at the center. In addition, we have pews available. If you would like to bring a different seat, you are welcome to do so.

Are there any rules I should know about before coming to the center?
We ask individuals to abstain from alcohol or illicit drugs at any dharma-related function at Gar Drolma Choling.

May I bring my kids to the center? 
Our events are open to children.

Are there any costs involved in attending?
Donations to Gar Drolma Buddhist Center are much needed and much appreciated but not required.  There is no fee for any of the weekly programming however there may be a charge for larger events due to the increased cost to the center.  These fees will be clearly listed on the website if applicable.
It is not Gar Drolma’s goal to make money but just to break even.   Monks and lamas, our precious teachers, devote their whole lives to the Dharma to benefit beings.   Our individual support helps make this possible, particularly in the West.  Generosity is the first of the six perfections, and Buddhists believe that offerings
of money, goods, time, or energy directed toward dharma activities bring enormous benefit to the giver if done with proper motivation.   Do not underestimate the value of donating your personal time & energy to the center as well; these are extremely important & will make a big difference.

PLEASE NOTE: Loving Kindness and Compassion are vastly more important than protocol. Therefore, as you help others along please always keep this in mind.


It is so wonderful that you have met with the dharma and we welcome you to our center. We want to provide an environment at Gar Drolma that is open to all who seek a deeper, truer, more significant experience of life—from the general public
to Buddhist practitioners.

Our goal is to provide support and offer a range of activities with broad appeal, accommodating participation at every level. For those who seek guidance on the Buddhist path, we will provide it. For those with a secular interest in meditation and wellness, we will share our knowledge.

We also understand that when you begin it can sometimes feel like there is so much to learn. In fact, many of us at Gar Drolma remember what it was like to first walk into the center filled with a thirst to learn more about Buddhism but not certain where to even begin, as it can feel so vast. You can choose from meditation classes and meditation practice sessions, traditional Buddhist teachings, book discussions on Buddhist philosophy, and more. We are here for you whatever your level of interest.

If you wish a personal meeting or have any questions at all, please feel free to contact Mel at sangha@gardrolma.org

We look forward to seeing you at Gar Drolma.  



What is Buddhism?
Buddhism is the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, who was born into a royal family in northern India around 2500 years ago.  He realized that wealth and luxury did not guarantee happiness so he explored the different teachings, religions and philosophies of the day to find the key to happiness.  After many years of study and meditation he finally found 'the middle path' and became enlightened.  After enlightenment he taught what he learned until his death at the age of 80.

Was the Buddha a God?
He was not, nor did he claim to be.  He was a man who taught a path to enlightenment from his own experience.

Is Buddhism a religion?
To many, Buddhism goes beyond religion and is more of a philosophy or 'way of life'.

Do Buddhists worship idols?
Buddhists sometimes pay respect to images of the Buddha.  A statue of the Buddha with hands rested gently in it's lap and a compassionate smile reminds us to strive to develop peace and love within ourselves.  Bowing to the statue is an expression of gratitude for the teaching.

Are there different types of Buddhism?
There are many different types of Buddhism, because the emphasis changes from country to country due to customs and cultures.  What does not vary is the essence of the teaching.

What does Buddhism say about other religions?
Buddhism is a belief system which is tolerant of all other beliefs and religions.  Buddhism agrees with the moral teachings of other religions, no matter the name it goes by.

How can Buddhism help me?
Buddhism explains a purpose to life, it explains apparent injustice and inequality around the world, and it provides a code of practice or way of life that leads to true happiness.


Are there any special protocols?
This information on protocol is meant to help relieve anxiety rather than create it. It was assembled because many beginners have questions about these formal matters.

Sacred texts & materials should not be placed on the floor and they should not be stepped over by people or by animals. Nothing should be placed on top of these items except for other dharma texts / pictures.   Sacred texts include pechas, photocopied prayers, any representation with sacred syllables, dharma books,
your personal notes containing dharma teachings, any representation of deities, lamas, buddhas, bodhisattvas, sacred mandalas, etc. If a time comes when the materials are no longer useful, they do not go in the garbage.   We burn them and can think of them as an offering at that time.

Do I need to sit perfectly still? 

In the tradition of Buddhism found at Gar Drolma it is not necessary to sit perfectly still in order to participate in meditation or other events.

What if I need a special appointment?
If you need to make a special appointment to come to the temple at a time not listed, please contact us at: 
937-252-2220 or email: sangha@gardrolma.org

How do I know if the center is open during bad weather?
In the unlikely event that the weather is extreme, we may need to cancel practice. Please stay tuned to the home page of this website for such announcements.

Do I need to be a Buddhist to attend Gar Drolma? 
Not at all! No previous experience with Buddhism is necessary in order to attend practices. In fact, we all began with no experience!

What types of people are welcome at the center?
We are an open and inclusive sangha, and do not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, income, sexual orientation or political orientation. We are a very diverse group of people with members from many walks of life.

1329 Creighton Ave. Dayton, OH 45420 | Directions (937) 252-2220
E-mail: sangha@gardrolma.org