Course Descriptions

ANT 101: Introduction to Anthropology
This course provides the student with a survey of the study of anthropology as the foundational perspective towards a worldview of humanity and the development of humanity within the context of culture.

BM 101: Introduction to Buddhism (Theravada, Mahayana, Vajrayana)
This course introduces the core Buddhist principals using the framework of all Buddhist traditions. The course then looks at the Theravada teachings of the elders then show the Mahayana expansion upon this basis and finally how the Vajrayana expands upon the Mahayana. This course provides a mixture of theory and practice with last two days just focusing on meditation.

BM 102: Foundations of Buddhist Thought
This course will provide a basic understanding of the teachings and practices of Buddhism. The central issues will be situated within their broader Indian historical contexts, and the readings follow a generally chronological order. The course begins with the life of the Buddha, the early teachings, and the founding of the Buddhist monastic order.

BM 103: Buddhist History
This course studies a wide variety of reading, as well as visual materials (including film), will be used to place the historical and doctrinal accounts within their cultural and institutional context of the development of Buddhism as it spread through Southeast Asian and then worked its way north.

BM 104: Buddhist Meditation I (Mindfulness, Vipassana)
This course will explore the nature and function of Buddhist meditation as it developed within various Buddhist traditions of South, Southeast, and East Asia. Emphasis will be on historical evolution, doctrinal foundations, and the monastic growth associated with Buddhist meditation practices. There will be an emphasis in this course on Mindfulness and the Vipassana tradition of meditation and their place Buddhist meditative practices.

BM 105: Buddhist Meditation II (Zen)
This course introduces the student to the Zen meditation way. Zen is a school of Buddhism that was generated in the 7thcentury as a partial combination of a number Buddhist philosophies and literatures. This course will combine theory of Zen meditation with practice. This course covers the writings, traditions and practices of Zen. Students learn about Zen teaching stories, rituals, meditation and art, as well as impact of Zen’s modern expansion to the West.

BM 106: Buddhist Text Reading I (Theravada)
This course studies the available texts that are the tenants of the dominant Buddhist group in Southeast Asia. Its doctrines are taken from the Pali Tipitaka or Pali Canon and its basic teachings begins with the “Four Noble Truths”. Theravada emphasizes direct insight gained through critical analysis and experience rather than blind faith”. This course will help the individual to study the texts of a selected group of religions to see the importance of the historical period in which they were written and the literary genre which they represent as well as the impact on the community.

BM 107: Buddhist Text Reading II (Mahayana)
This course studies the available text of the first century (BCE) Mahayana tests. These next were recorded Tibetan and Chinese followers of this tradition and are held as the original Buddhist teachings. These texts were later translated into other Northern Asian languages and are the basis for the Buddhist religious beliefs in those countries. There is no definitive canon in these texts. This course will help the individual to study the texts of a selected group of religions to see the importance of the historical period in which they were written and the literary genre which they represent as well as the impact on the community.

BM 108: Buddhist Culture and Ethics
This course that examines the relationship between Buddhist culture and ethics from many different perspectives, beginning with theological models of talking about a Supreme Being, the self, and ethical goods and ending with discussions of specific ethical problems. The influence of cultural and ethical traditions of Buddhism will be studied. Issues discussed include medical ethics, theology and economics, the problem of war, the role of Buddhist thought in social change, and the nature of evil.

BMN 501: Buddhist Meditation Practicum
Meditation practice is central to Buddhist spirituality. An overview is given of the concentrative practices of the Mahayana Zen/Pure Land traditions, the insight meditations traditions of Theravada Buddhism and the Richly textured practices of Tibetan Buddhism that have had an impact on Americans as Buddhism expands out of its historic South Asian, East Asian homelands to the United States. Students are exposed to the meditation practices of the several Buddhist traditions, but are given extended training in the practices found in the Zen and Pure Land traditions.

BMN 502: History of Buddhism I 600BCE to 1000CE
This course traces the history of Buddhism from its 5th and 6th centuries B.C.E. beginnings to approximately 1000 C.E. Attention is given to the life of Buddha Gautama and traces the formation of Buddhist scripture in the first centuries of the movement. The spread of Buddhism in South Asia and Southeast Asia is reviewed, giving attention to the distinctive historical formation of the Theravada, Mahayana and Tibetan Buddhist traditions.

BMN 503: History of Buddhism II 1000CE to Modern Times
The spread of Buddhism from 1000 C.E. to modern times is reviewed. Attention is given to the expansion of Buddhism into the United States in the last 150 years. Two paths of this expansion are considered. Asian Buddhist immigrants have brought their historic traditions with then, establishing Buddhist communities that have attempted to find their place in the American, western culture. Changes in U.S. Immigration law in the 1960s and refugee resettlement efforts in the seventies and eighties have dramatically expanded Asian migration with a subsequent expansion of Buddhist temples and educational organizations. Moreover, Buddhism entry to the United States has also followed the second path – the establishment of Buddhist study/meditation centers oriented to Mahayana, Theravada and Tibetan traditions that have been oriented to western followers.

BMN 504: Foundations of Buddhist Thought I
This course examines the basic tenants of Buddhism attributed principally to Gautama Buddha. The foundations of Buddhist thought found in all traditions from ancient to modern times are reviewed. The divergence of Buddhist thought into Theravada, Mahayana and Tibetan traditions is examined. Attention is given to the features of the three main Buddhist traditions and the diversity to be found within each tradition.

BMN 505: Foundations of Buddhist Thought II
The philosophies of historic major Buddhist thinkers such as Nagarjuna and, in modern times, the Dalai Lama are studied. The Buddhist thought of selected Buddhist scholars that have been established in the United States is examined. Attention is given to the influence of Buddhism on western thinkers in the relatively new Transpersonal Psychology movement.

BMN 506: Buddhist Ethics
The historic and philosophical roots of Buddhism are studied with consideration given to the diversity to be found among the three major Buddhist traditions. Buddhist ethics is compared to other major ethical systems. Major social concerns such as addressing poverty and the causes of damage to the environment are considered from the perspective of Buddhist Ethics.

BMN 507: Bible Overview
This course is to consider the Bible as both a collection of disparate books and as a unified whole. The course will explore the Bible’s literary techniques and its enormous variety of genres-everything from myth to history, from genealogy to poetry, from prophecy to biography-as well as the historical periods that produced and are reflected in it. The course will also consider issues arising from the history of the translation of the Bible from its original Hebrew and Greek. The course’s goal is to understand and appreciate more fully both the richness and the complexity of the biblical texts, as well as the importance of those texts to our culture.

BMN 508: Gospels
This course will expose the student to issues concerning how to interpret the Gospels, and provide an historical and theological survey of each of the four Gospels, culminating with discussion of how these four Gospels witness to the one Jesus

BMN 509: Christian Evangelism
This course will train students to be thoughtful and passionate evangelists and to understand and use biblical principles and methods of church outreach. Emphasis is placed on having a deep desire to reach the lost for Christ. Personal, relational and corporate evangelism and motivating the laity for ministry will be considered. Practical theological foundation for the practice of evangelism and for evangelistic leadership in the church.

BMN 510: Church History
This course covers four major periods: The Ancient Church, The Medieval Church, The Reformation Church, and The Modern Church. The focus of this study is to gain perspective, both comforting and challenging, to many current issues faced today. A study of the history of the church, enables the student to gain an understanding of the primary leaders, movements, and schools of thought throughout the centuries.

BMN 511: spiritual Formation
This course will survey the new life in Christ, not under law but under grace, as well as the development of that new life. Students will learn the importance of trusting God in every aspect of our lives. We will see how God brings forth fruit, good works, and obedience through His grace.

BMN 512: Church Leadership
This course is designed to develop leadership potential in students and to give them a familiarity with the various elements of the administrative process, including: goal setting and achieving, organization, delegation, human relations, group dynamics, supervision and the training of other leaders. Though the principles are universal, the focus of the course is the local church.

BMN 601: Sutra Studies
An overview is provided of Buddhist Sutras or canonical texts, distinguishing them from other sutra collections found in the Indian religious tradition. Consideration is given to what is known of the historical context in which the Buddhist sutras were formed, then written down. The historical use of sutras in Buddhist ceremonial practices is reviewed. Concentrated attention is given to understanding and interpreting those sutras that are used in the Pure Land traditions.

BMN 602: Buddhism in the New Global Society
Buddhism’s expansion out of South and East Asia in the past several hundred years has confirmed its place as a world religion. It is finding its place in non-Asian cultures such as that of the United States. A review is undertaken of the other major religious traditions, especially those that have been established in the United States. Collaboration with other faith groups in the work of compassion and social justice is considered in the context of American cultural diversity.

BMN 603: The Buddhist Practitioner I
Students are trained in the conduct of Buddhist Ceremonial Practices for regular Buddhist gatherings, special Buddhist occasions and requested services such as for house/business blessings, weddings and funerals. As part of the conduct of ceremonies, the practitioner is called upon to give public instructions or sermons. The student is taught the art of public speaking and the delivery or differing types of sermons.

BMN 604: The Buddhist Practitioner II
The Buddhist practitioner is called upon to be a counselor and teacher, especially in an American Buddhist congregational setting. Instruction is given in the fundamentals of personal and family counseling, giving clarity to the limitations of the practitioner as counselor and the counselee issues that should prompt referral to a mental health professional. Teaching is a principal function of the Buddhist practitioner. Instruction is given in the fundamentals of teaching, including the development and delivery of age appropriate teaching programs.

BMN 605: Buddhist Leadership
This course studies the history of dynamic personages who have been influenced by Buddhist philosophy and life-style and who have thereby influenced the history of the world.

BMN 606: Internship
During the course of his or her studies, the student will undertake an internship in a Buddhist service setting. The internship would normally be for weekly scheduled involvement over a period of six months, but may be for a shorter, concentrated time, such as a summer project.

BUD 201: Introduction to Buddhist Meditation
This course will explore the nature and function of Buddhist meditation as it developed within various Buddhist traditions of South, Southeast, and East Asia. Emphasis will be on the historical evolution, doctrinal foundations, and the monastic growth associated with Buddhist meditation practices. A wide variety of readings, as well as visual materials (including films), will be used to place the historical and doctrinal accounts within their cultural and institutional context.

BUD 202: Intermediate Buddhist Meditation
This course is a continuation of the introductory course but its emphasis will be on the practical steps of meditation as a way to a more balanced, compassionate life style that will bring greater peace into the life of the practitioner. Exploration of various techniques in meditation will be a major part of this course.

BUD 203: Advanced Buddhist Meditation
This course consists of presentations of a higher level of meditative skills which will enable the student to employ the various skills learned at the theoretical level and make the applicable to daily living. Interactive experience will be a major component of this class.

BUD 204: Fundamentals of Buddhism
This course examines the known historical facts of the Buddha’s life. His teachings are introduced, including the Four Noble Truths, the Eightfold Path to Enlightenment, and the Five Noble Precepts. Students will learn the nature of Karma, and the distinction between Rebirth in Buddhist philosophy and reincarnation as it is envisioned in Hinduism and other religions. Students will analyze the history of Buddhist philosophy in the 2500 years since its inception and the differences among the three main branches into which Buddhism has evolved. Students will be introduced to the nature of Nirvana and Enlightenment, and the distinction between the two.

BUD 301: Buddhism and Culture
This course will cover issues in the study of Buddhism and its influence on the variety of local cultures in which it has impacted. The course might deal with theoretical issues in the study of Buddhist contemporary social issues (e.g., race, class, gender) in relation to various traditions of the peoples of various countries.

BUD 302: Ethics in Buddhism
This course explores the development of religious traditions in the in the past and their application to modern ethical problems and that are made by individuals, businesses and nations. The course is intended to serve as a developing a code that will help direct the individual to achieve a life of contentment and peace.

BUD 303: Practicum in Buddhist Ministry I
The practice of Buddhist ministry demands the development of compassion and non-judgmental mind and at the same time offers intense opportunities to develop these qualities. Ministers serve in variety of settings in which people are under stress of one kind or another, including hospitals and hospices, prisons and jails, and military. This is a two-semester sequence of training. Over the course of the sessions, through discussion, readings, meditation, and internship, the student will not only learn about ministry, but begin to develop the necessary skills and understandings for compassionate service to others who are in need, whether they are Buddhists or not.

BUD 304: Practicum in Buddhist Ministry II
This course is a continuation of Practicum in Buddhist Ministry I and should be taken in the quarter immediately following Practicum I so it can provide continuity in the program and in service.

BUD 305: Buddhism in East Asia
This course introduces the diversity of Buddhist ideas and practices in East Asia. Exploring Buddhism as a living tradition, it focuses on the impact and interpretation of Buddhism in historical and contemporary cultures. After developing a background in basic Buddhist philosophy, we explore Buddhism’s cultural impact in literature, art, ritual, ethics, economics, social interaction and politics.

BUD 306: Cultural and Social Aspects of Buddhism
This course is an examination of the cultural and social history of Buddhism, the aspects of current scholarship that relate to the study, and an investigation of the problems that involve religion as an institution, with special reference to the emergence of the concepts of Humanistic Buddhism and Socially Engaged Buddhism.

BUD 401: Pastoral Counseling for Buddhist Ministry
This course provides basic knowledge and skills in counseling and in group dynamics in order that the student gains skills in deal with the needs of the community both individually and communally.

BUD 402: Individual Study for Buddhist Ministerial Students
This course provides individual study for the student to concentrate study in a particular area where greater depth is needed. The program of studies will be individualized by the student working with an instructor.

BUD 403: Profiles of Buddhist Leadership
This course studies the history of dynamic personages who have been influenced by Buddhist philosophy and life-style and who have thereby influenced the history of the world. Individual students must select the profile of a Buddhist religious leader and write an extensive essay on that person and then present the report to the class.

BUD 407: Buddhist Sutras
An overview is provided of Buddhist Sutras or canonical texts, distinguishing them from other sutra collections found in the Indian religious tradition. Consideration is given to what is known of the historical context in which the Buddhist sutras were formed, then written down. The historical use of sutras in Buddhist ceremonial practices is reviewed. Concentrated attention is given to understanding and interpreting those sutras that are used in the Pure Land traditions.

BUD 408: Buddhist Philosophy
This course is an exploration into the rich history, the doctrines and practices, and the various manifestations of the Buddhist tradition. Buddhism has always been culturally and historically embedded, and therefore we shall approach Buddhism from several different angles – historical, cultural, ritual, philosophical, and artistic – in an attempt to comprehend the religion in all of its diversity. We will begin with an investigation into the social and religious context of 5th century BCE India out of which the Buddha emerged, and then progress to an exploration of Buddhism’s philosophical basis in the early teachings of the Buddha in India, and the various important interpreters of these teachings. We will then turn to an investigation of the early social and religious structure of the Buddhist community, and trace the changes in this community – and the changes in the Buddha’s original formulation of his teachings – as Buddhism spread out from India, to Nepal and Tibet, to Sri Lanka, Burma, and Thailand, to China and Japan, and eventually to Europe and America.

BUD 409: Buddhism in South and Southeast Asia
The course is an introduction to one or more Buddhist traditions still living or historically documented in South and Southeast Asia, ranging from ancient and medieval Buddhism to Buddhist modernity and including Buddhism in its local Theravada variants.

BUD 410: Buddhist Psychology
This course will present basic Buddhist philosophy, explore techniques from Buddhism that are used as therapeutic tools & interventions, will introduce different meditation and mindfulness techniques that help reduce suffering, and will look at the Buddhist view of psychology in relation to modern theoretical orientations. Students will learn practical techniques to prevent compassion and empathy burnout regardless of the student’s spiritual orientation.

BUD 411: Buddhist Sociology
This course explores potential links between Buddhism and sociology, highlighting the many commonalities between sociology and Buddhism, with an emphasis on ways that Buddhist thought and practice may contribute to the field of sociology.

COM 101: Introduction to Computer and Information processing
This course provides an opportunity to learn one’s way around the computer and its related components. It covers keyboard and mouse operations, operating system’s desktop, icons, and menus. It will also cover basic Office Applications, study and practice.

ECO 101: Introduction to Economics
This course introduces the student to key concepts in microeconomics, macroeconomics; including business, labor, the stock market, supply and demand, the gross domestic product, inflation, employment, and fiscal and monetary tax policies.

ENG 101: Developing Communication Skills
This course includes the principles and strategies for effective written and oral communication in diverse business and personal communication areas in business and personal life.

ENG 102: Creative Writing
This is an introduction to the elements of fiction writing. Students will read and discuss short fiction, as well as experiment with their own writing and share original short stories in a workshop setting. It will also explore the vast world of poetry. In addition to surveying poetry, it will also study poetic conventions, techniques, and forms.

ENG 103: Literature of the West
This is a survey of major literary works from English, American and Continental Literature. It will cover representation from the various literary genres.

ENG 104 Literature of the East
This is study of world literature from the East dating from antiquity through to the present time showing the diversity of people and cultures from a range of time periods. It will cover representation from the various literary genres.

HIS 101: United States History through 1876
This course is a survey of the social, political and economic history of the United States from colonization to 1876. The course will include a close study of the different development of the colonies into states and the causes for the Civil War that developed.

HIS 102: United States History since 1876
This course covers the period from 1877 until the present time, with an emphasis on the 20th century. It stresses the advancement and reinforcement of the skills of critical thinking and the application of value clarification and global awareness to the international and economic problems the United States has faced, is facing and will face in the future.

HIS 103: Asian History
This course offers an introduction to Asian studies, the interdisciplinary field dedicated to understanding Asia through its complex and dynamic cultures, past and present. By learning about the history, religion, literature, politics, and popular culture of Asia, students will begin to see beyond commonplace perspectives and generalizations, gaining the skills to think in critical and informed ways about Asia and its place in the world.

HUM 101: Civilizations of the West
This course introduces western civilization from pre-history to the early modern era. Topics include: ancient Greece, Rome, and Christian institutions of the Middle Ages and the emergence of national monarchies in Western Europe. Upon completion, students should be able to analyze significant political, socioeconomic, and cultural developments in early western civilization. Prerequisite: This course is designed for students who may take other upper-level history courses.

HUM 102: Civilizations of the East
This is a course of Eastern civilization from pre-history to the early modern times. Chinese, Korean and Japanese civilizations will be some of the topics covered. It includes Middle Eastern and Asian civilizations and emphasizes the happenings of the Twentieth century.

HUM 103: Critical Thinking in the Twenty-first Century
This course offers and introduction to the principles of reasoning which includes both Formal and Informal Logic. Under the rubrics of informal logic, they will be taught to recognize arguments in ordinary language and the common fallacies that are frequently used and how to deal with them. Topics relevant to the problems of today will be stressed. Oral and written presentations will be stressed.

HUM 104: Logic
This course involves the critical and correct construction and analysis of arguments using induction, deduction and scientific reasoning. Students will practice analyzing fallacies, definitions, analogies, and uses of language. They will learn to use some of the elementary tools of formal logic, such as Venn diagrams, truth tables, and formal proofs using the rules of inference. Classical and Eastern logic will be explored.

MAT 101: College Mathematics
This course is intended as a preparation course for College Algebra for students who need or desire a review of Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Analysis and other mathematical concepts.

MP 100: Meditation
This course is for students to practice meditation on his/her own time or at a classroom setting. Students may attend designated temple for self-meditation or he or she may perform daily meditation at any location that is inducive to meditation.

PHI 101: Introduction to Philosophy
This course is a historical survey of the main branches of philosophy; metaphysics, theory of knowledge, ethics, and aesthetics. Some treatment of the philosophies of religion, language, science, political, and social philosophy will be done.

POL 101: Introduction to Political Science
This course will introduce students to the major concepts of the discipline of political science, and will teach students to apply these concepts to current and historical events. The course is designed to enable students to think critically about local, national, and world politics.

PSY 101: Introduction to Psychology
This course is an introduction to the fundamental theories in psychology including the areas of learning, thinking, creativity, and behavior. This course helps to prepare a student for life in general and for the ways that psychology can be useful in the world of work. It provides a basis of self-understanding and the knowledge of better ways to understand others.

REL 101: Religions of the East
This course explores the similarities and differences among the various Asian religions (including Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism, Sikhism and Jainism), with comparison to Western religious traditions, and references to the cultural traditions in which the religions arose.

REL 102: Religions of the West
This course is an introduction to the history of Christianity from the sixteenth-century Reformation to the present when the diversity of the western religions became reality. The course focuses primarily on Christianity in the West, but also examines the global spread of Christianity. Principal themes include the challenges of modern thought and culture to traditional Christianity, religious innovation and pluralism, missionary movements, the interaction between Christianity and its social and cultural environments, and new forms of Christian theology and institutions.

REL 103: Foundations of Buddhism
This course will provide a basic understanding of the teachings and practices of Buddhism. The central issues will be situated within their broader Indian historical contexts, and the readings follow a generally chronological order. The course begins with the life of the Buddha, the early teachings, and the founding of the Buddhist monastic order.

REL 104: Foundations of Christianity
This is an introduction to the history of Christianity from the patristic, post-New-Testament period to the medieval period and the early Renaissance. Principal themes include the emergence and meaning of early Christian beliefs and practices, their development during the Middle Ages, the social and cultural environments of the ancient, medieval, and early Renaissance church, and the trends leading up to the Reformation.

REL 105: Foundations of Islam
This course is an introduction to Islam. It studies the history, beliefs, and practices of Islam in the Middle East from Muhammad to the present day. The study will include the culture that shaped the various forms of Islam.

REL 106: Foundations of Judaism
This course studies the beginning of Judaism using the Torah as the primary stepping stone. Early physical and historical events that shaped early Judaism will also be discussed. The shaping of the culture of Israel will also be presented in order to understand the important place that the early Jewish people felt that they had in their relationship with God.

REL 107: Foundations of Hinduism
This course studies the origin and development of central themes of traditional Hinduism from earliest times. Topics include: the Vedic tradition, rituals and practice, varieties of yoga, and meditation, Indian religious thought, and devotional Hinduism. There will be an emphasis on how religion played a dynamic role in the shaping of India.

SCI 101: Human Health and Development
This course explores the physical, mental, emotional, and social aspects of human development from conception through adulthood. Relevant medical and physical situations of the twenty-first century will be explored.

SOC 101: Introduction to Sociology
In this course students will examine how people behave in groups and how group interaction shapes both individual and group behavior. They will analyze rules, organizations, and value systems that enable people to live together. With this knowledge, they will apply these skills to presented problems in society.