Looking for buddhist instruction for adults and children in Taipei!

We are on the search for somewhere to explore and gain some more insight into buddhism. Our 5 year old son is quite interested in a way which only a young child could be so we are hoping we can find a gentle approach to teaching him while we also have some instruction. We have no history with any buddhist group so we don’t even know where to begin. Having said this we are not looking for Daoist instruction but other than that we are really not too sure what is out there. If anyone can guide us to a group or temple where we could explore with our son, we would be grateful for the help.

Thanks in advance

I think this is on the wrong forum here and will probably be moved, but in any case, I looked around (I’m in Tainan) for something similar, but could only find a couple of centers with Chinese only, and my Chinese is very, very far off from understanding religious terms in Chinese.

I’ve been lucky in having a Taiwanese family here (Wode Taiwan de jia ren) that are very into their Buddhism and always happy to share it with me.

But, I think you will not be able to separate Buddhism and Taoism here anywhere. They have been so integrated here for so long, that most of the time Taiwanese cannot separate them for you. I often asked my “Taiwanese sister,” i.e., my roommate, whether a certain temple was Taoist or Buddhist, or whether something she told me came from one philosophy or the other, and she always said “I don’t know.” She really knows her stuff on religion, and often translates religious texts, but even she couldn’t distinguish one from the other. I think they have been mixed for so long that they have become one (along with Confucism) in the minds of Taiwanese.

That’s my impression in the two years I’ve been here. Anybody else?

I assume you are looking for English language?

There is an English language Buddhist meditation group I know that meets on Saturdays. Or are you looking for more concrete introduction?

Maybe I can help. What is your son’s tenet system–Prasangika Madhyamaka?

But seriously, you might like to take him to the Tibetan and Mongolian Culture Center near Shr Da. It’s free, and he could like, look at pretty costumes and stuff.

If you want something more like Sunday school, what language does he speak? And do you have any preference about what type of Buddhism it is? (For example Theravada, Tibetan, Chinese?) I can ask around.

Zentimental, Thanks for the info. Are the meetings just for meditation? Or are there any dharma talks, too?

I have not been but enquired once and they send me the agenda each week by email. It is not only meditation but also dharma. It looks quite intersting. They have an email address but I don’t have it on me - I’ll post it when I get home.


thanks for all the direction and I do like to “look at pretty things” from time to time. I have just connected with a tibetan monk via a friend in Nepal and am looking forward to whatever that brings. As to the “Sunday school” approach, I am totally interested but assume their is nothing like that out there. My son’s primary language is English but he goes to a Chinese school and can understand and speak Chinese at a childs level but might not understand in this kind of setting. If you hear of this type of Dharma talk for kids I know he would be keen. Thanks for your help

Zazen, although at first glance one could be put off by its rather ‘Californian’ style, I think that the children’s book “Amy and Gully in Rainbowland” could be a nice book to look at with your son;
amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/de … ct-details

Have a look at this thread which should answer a lot of your questions.

Also the Tzu Chi Foundation publishes some children’s books (in English) with Buddhist stories. You can buy them at their office in Chunghsiao East Road. (sorry don’t have exact address)

This is true to some extent. Many Taiwanese will call themselves Buddhist, but in reality they do nothing more than burn incense and worship their ancestors. These are really just Chinese traditions and don’t have anything to do with Buddhism or Taoism.

A smaller percentage of Taiwanese are more genuine Buddhists and would have a good understanding of Buddhist teachings. They practice things like meditation and reciting the sutras (Buddhist teachings). There is a very strong Confucian element in Chinese Mahayana Buddhism and you will find that many of the teachings on ethics are derived from Confucianism.

me too. if you have any luck finding something, let us know.

Maybe we could try to set up some sort of Dharma for kids or the like…I will let you know if I find any interested parties.

Here are the websites for the four main Buddhist groups in Taiwan:

Tzu Chi Foundation: www.tzuchi.org.tw
Fo Guang Shan: www.fgs.org.tw
Dharma Drum Mountain: www.ddm.org.tw
Chung Tai Chan: www.ctworld.org

The last one has a new monstery in Puli. Check it out! ctworld.org/chungtai/tour/b01.htm

Dharma Drum (link above) has Saturday morning services in English downtown (An He Road). They do zazen, some light yoga, then a dharma discussion. My friend leads it. It’s pretty nice.

Hi Attagirl,

I live near An He Road (Taipei City). Where can I find Dharma Drum’s English activity? Maybe I should check it on their website. But if you know, please give me a hint. :slight_smile:

Attagirl, Can you please tell us the address of the Saturday morning get togethers. Where on AnHe Road is this held?

I have looked on the Dharma Drum Web site, but I have been unable to find any information about this, or an address for any events on AnHe Road.

It sounds as if you’ve attended some of these. I’d would be very interested, too.

Thanks a lot.