In accordance with the motto of the University, bhāsaye jotaye dhammaṃ (the Visākha-sutta, AN 4.48 and SN 21.7, and the Mahāsutasoma-jātaka (No. 537)), ‘to dialogue and uphold the torch of Dhamma’, our vision is to create a vibrant, liberal Theravada institution for future generations. Our vision is informed by the establishment of large teaching institutions in South Asia more than one and half millennium ago. The famous Nālandā institution (the 5th – 12th centuries CE), along with four other big institutions—Vikramashila, Somapura, Odantapuri and Jaggadala—played a key role in contributing to the development of rich, diverse Buddhist scholarship, and in spreading the Dhamma to other parts of Asia and possibly beyond. These Buddhist institutions, which are often characterised as the earliest universities, had close intellectual connections and working relationship among themselves; they reached their peak under the Pala Dynasty, i.e. the 8th-12th centuries CE.
Informed by our motto, we aspire to work together with diverse communities in Myanmar and beyond in order to study and nurture the Dhamma for the benefit of oneself and others. In practice this means that our long-term aim is to use Theravada Tipiṭaka as the principle source of wisdom and provide (1) rigorous, adaptable educational programmes, and (2) socially engaged activities and programmes for the benefit of our diverse communities and of the wider world. We strongly believe that through such programmes and engagements with the wider world, we all would be able to nurture the Buddha’s teachings and practice within oneself, and to build on it for the benefit of others.