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Pittsburgh, September 9, 2008 ó La Roche College will be one of a number of venues and hosts for the Pittsburgh visit of Tibetan Buddhist Yogi Lama Gursam. Lama Gursam will be in the Pittsburgh area Sept. 12-17 as part of his nine-month North American teaching tour.

While at La Roche College, Lama Gursam will lead an informal question-and-answer session and group meditation, a World Peace Program with a focus on Tibet, an Interfaith Peace Ceremony and an Animal/Earth Blessing. La Roche College Director of Campus Ministry Father Peter Horton and Lama Gursam will give talks on universal responsibility as the foundation for world peace as well as the relationships and responsibilities of humans with animals and the Earth. The World Peace Program will be preceded by a documentary video about the historical importance of yogis and Buddhism in Tibetan culture. The World Peace Program will also include an update on recent events in Tibet surrounding the Olympics in China. These events are open to the public; a suggested donation is associated with a number of the events.

Yogi Lama Gursam was born and raised as a Tibetan refugee in northern India. He entered the Drikung Kagyu Monastery in Tso Pema, India, at the age of 6, where he studied Buddhist philosophy, practice, ritual and conduct. He completed his bachelorís degree in 1988 in the Sanskrit, Hindi, Tibetan, and English languages and in Buddhist philosophy. He received his masterís degree in 1990 in advanced Buddhist philosophy and, upon graduation, he received a special award from His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

In 1995, Lama Gursam was sent to the United States to teach Buddhist philosophy. He continued to study with Tibetan Buddhist masters and completed the necessary practices, including years in solitary retreat, to become a Yogi (an advanced practitioner that has achieved a high level of spiritual insight.) Lama Gursam continues to return every year to India for teachings and retreats, and every year to the United States and Canada for his teaching tour. He also leads pilgrimages to the sacred Buddhist sites in India every two-to-three years. Lama Gursam currently guides sanghas (Buddhist groups) in Vermont, Maryland, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia and Arizona as well as Montreal and Sault Sainte Marie, Canada.

In 2006, Lama Gursam founded the Bodichitta Foundation, a U.S. non-profit organization, officially recognized by His Holiness Chetsang Rinpoche, the head of the Drikung Kagyu lineage. The Bodichitta Foundation benefits its members by preserving ancient texts, Tibetan culture, education, womenís rights and health. The local group under his direction is The Bodhicitta Foundation Sangha of Valencia, Pa., which meets weekly on the La Roche College campus.

For more information and a complete schedule of events in Lama Gursamís Pittsburgh visit, please log onto or e-mail

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