The Project

To establish a monastery

A place where monks and nuns can live in accordance with the regulations and ethics taught by Shakyamuni Buddha, to receive teachings, study, progress in practice and keep alive the tradition of Buddhism.

Early photos of the quarry

Cava poggio la penna
view of the top shelf
Cava poggio la penna
view of the quarry from the bridge over the Lespa

The Associazione Sangha Onlus

Inspired and strongly supported by Geshe Jampa Gyatso, the Association brings together a monastic community, mainly Western, which has chosen to follow and practise the Buddha’s teaching, preserving the great spiritual and philosophical value, in harmony with contemporary thought. Read more.

After the land was purchased an initial sketch of the site and how the monastery might look was drawn by Mr Khodom Outhaithavy


Ven. Cesare di Giovanni also painted a picture of the future monastery

The future monastery

It will be the first monastery in Italy: a point of cohesion and a reference for all those who intend to take the vows; will allow access to a curriculum of comprehensive and profound studies under the guidance of qualified instructors; and will preserve the tradition of Buddhism and the purity of its transmission. As a monastic project for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition, founded by Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa, we will rely upon the teaching and advice of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet, Lama Zopa Rinpoche, and the abbot of the monastery.

In 2008, the University of Pisa carried out a site study.  Below are some of the tables produced for the study.




Cognitive Framework of the Structural Plan


It will be built on the rock of a hill in the immediate vicinity of the Istituto Lama Tsong Khapa, recovering the territory scarred from the excavation of an earlier abandoned quarry. On the rock, like the monasteries in Tibet!

The architecture will be sensitive to both ancient architectural traditions and the landscape and will follow a path of eco-sustainability, thus ensuring a low environmental impact, saving energy and resources.

From the University of Pisa study


The U.T.O.E. (elementary organic territorial units) adjacent to the quarry and the extract of the structural plan


Land use 1: 10000 Perceptive Analysis


Land use 1:2000

Renewing the Ecology

The use of species of Mediterranean flora, typical of the area and the creation of a contemplation park with the improvement of the ancient paths, will be the way in which the Association intends to contribute to the recovery of a battered area, originally rich in Mediterranean scrub and part of the great woodland of Santa Luce. It will further safeguard the existing wildlife; there has even been evidence for the presence of some wolves.

From the University of Pisa study


Perceptive analysis


Intervisibility analysis


Analysis of the landscape structure


The site and the surrounding landscape: images and perceptions.

Openness to others and interreligious dialogue

The Monastery will preserve some private spaces but will be basically open to contact with others, to spiritual and interreligious dialogue. It will allow people of different faiths, all of us, to open our hearts and minds to the harmony of communication based on respect and tolerance, and increase serenity in everyday life and promote peace in the world.

From the University of Pisa study


Study of Tibetan architectural forms


A preliminary study for the project


Master Plan: dimensions and location of the buildings


Master Plan: idea for the modelling of the complex

How the Project has Evolved

Many ideas were considered for the site: some like building into the rock face were discarded after considering expert advice concerning the geology of the area; others were deemed too intrusive and not in keeping with the local area. After the 2008 University of Pisa study, in 2011 architects drew up more detailed plans for the site. These plans are the basis of the proposed project but will be adjusted and adapted in conjunction with advice from the local authority and to reflect the latest architectural practices for sustainable development.

Computer image and plan for the main temple



The way we share our goal

We have purchased 96 hectares of land and we have a magnificent architectural project. Everything else still has to be realized.
If you think you can help, we will be extremely grateful.