The Dharma Realm Buddhist University (DRBU) announced this week that Professor Lauren Bausch, an expert in Vedic thought and language and ancient Buddhism, has received a Fulbright US Scholar Program Award in Religious Studies. She will use the grant to travel to India for the 2023-2024 academic year. There she will be hosted by the Department of Pali and Buddhist Studies, headed by Professor Mahesh Deokar, at Savitribai Phule Pune University in Pune, where she will work on a book.
Professor Bausch's book will explore the philosophy of language and causality in the Middle and Late Vedic texts, and their relationship to early Buddhism: "In India, I will have direct access to one of the oldest spiritual traditions of the world, preserved both in Sanskrit texts and among the Vedic priests. I'm curious to see what kind of result it gives! (Ukiah's Daily Diary)
Eight hundred American citizens received Fulbright awards for the year. These awards stipulate that scholars act as cultural ambassadors to enhance international understanding and academic collaboration among scholars and students around the world.
Professor Bausch expressed her enthusiasm for the award saying, “I was so happy that I cried while reading the acceptance letter. It is a huge honor to be selected and I look forward to being an Academic Ambassador, representing the United States of America and conducting research in India. (Ukiah's Daily Diary)
“While in India, I will also connect with local Vedic and Buddhist practitioners, give talks, and build a community of Vedic and Buddhist scholars in the United States and India. I look forward to meeting old friends and making new ones,” Prof. Bausch said, adding that the project “investigates the philosophy of language and causality articulated in the Middle and Late Vedic texts. . . identifies and examines the discourses within these texts around the nature of man and the absolute being created to experience relativity, and situates the philosophy of the Brahmana texts within Indian intellectual history. Rather than interpreting ritual activity through the prism of Mimamsa and Vedanta, this research probes the cosmologies, mythology, and explanatory connections found in the Brahmana texts themselves. (Paso Robles Daily News)
DRBU President Susan Rounds praised Professor Bausch, saying her “Fulbright Award is a testament to her excellence and dedication to research. We are immensely proud of her accomplishments and look forward to the new knowledge and insights she will bring to our community. His journey will no doubt inspire other scholars and students at Dharma Realm Buddhist University. (Ukiah's Daily Diary)
Professor Bausch said she was particularly eager to conduct research leading to her first book. Professor Bausch added that she was delighted to share with her Indian colleagues and students her institution's values of listening carefully in shared inquiry and benefiting others: "When I go to India as a Fulbrighter in July, I will wear the DRBU coat with our great nation, and I will proudly represent everyone at DRBU who has helped me along the way to receiving this incredible honor and opportunity. (Ukiah's Daily Diary)
Professor Bausch's academic journey has taken her across a number of religions and disciplines. She holds a BA in Political Science and Spanish and an MA in Christian Spirituality. She went on to earn a master's degree in South and Southeast Asian studies and a doctorate in Sanskrit. During her college education, she studied in India and volunteered in Colombia.
Beyond the work she will be doing on the forthcoming book, Professor Bausch said she is looking forward to networking with Vedic and Buddhist practitioners in India: "I look forward to meeting old friends and d make new ones. » (Ukiah's Daily Diary)