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22september2011nunsMundgod, India: - The winter debate meet at Jangchub Choeling Nunnery in Mundgod started yesterday, September 20. The debate session will last one month, from 20 September to 20 October.

Nuns traveled from Tibetan settlements throughout India and Nepal to take part in the debate session. The debates always occur in winter and change location each year. There are 400 nuns participating in the debates; 211 from Mundgod and 189 from elsewhere.

Administrator Tenzin Namdoe said the nuns will debate for five hours every day except for Monday, for two hours in the morning and three hours in the evening.

Nuns have been preparing for the debates for the last month, and the debates are on Pramana, one of the five measure of Buddhism. The debates serve the purpose of helping them improve their study of Buddhist philosophy.

Tenzin Namdoe says that while housing all of these nuns, the nunnery currently has a problem providing enough food for the nuns. "We are asking for donations from different groups and societies," she said.

The Jangchub Choeling Nunnery started in 1987 with just eighteen nuns. Today, there are a limited number of nuns who are allowed to stay at the monastery, as there is an issue with the amount of food and rooms.

Today, the nuns study scripture readings and philosophy, and engage in debates. They also study Tibetan grammar, English, handwriting and Science. Philosophy is one of the main subjects; they study Pramana (logic), Prajnaparamita (Perfection of Wisdom), Madhyamika (Middle Way), Abhidhama (Treasure of Knowledge) and Vinaya (Monastic discipline). The nuns receive a certificate upon completion of each of the main texts.

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