In this section you will find information that will help you navigate this course in an easy and effective way.

The course-structure 

In this self-study online course, the twelve seminars are presented as twelve lessons. Each lesson contains two topics: part one and two mirroring the two talks Stephen gives as part of each seminar. Although the course design allows you to move back and forth between lessons as you please, we advise that you start at the beginning and move through them in the order in which they are presented.

Within each topic you will find two recordings: 1) Stephen’s talk and 2) the discussion/Q&A following that talk. Each recording comes with an audio and a video version, allowing you to choose what works best for you. It is possible to download the audio recordings.


Each chapter in the workbook relates to a specific lesson of the course and gives a brief summary of the themes covered. You can find these texts under a separate tab at each topic called ‘Material’.

If you prefer to print out the workbook you can find it in its entirety here. Please note the appendices at the end of the workbook; whenever Stephen refers to them, you will find a link at the bottom of the topic page.

Question for Comtemplation

A question for contemplation is presented by Stephen at the end of each talk. You are invited to take some time to reflect on this question before moving on.


Most of Stephen’s quotes and references to suttas, books, theatre productions et cetera can be found in the workbook itself. For those not included in the workbook we have tried as best as we can to make them available to you by including them at the end of each topic under the heading ‘References’. Some of the references come from participants during the Q&A/discussion sessions.

Preparation for the next lesson

Most lessons end with instructions on how to best prepare for the next lesson, which often means reading some texts. The material is available to you by clicking on the link specified. However, Stephen’s book “After Buddhism’ is not. We believe it is helpful to have this book at hand and advise you to buy or borrow it from a library near you.

Abbreviations and terms frequently used

  • SN = Saṃyutta Nikāya
  • MN = Majjhima Nikāya
  • AN = Aṅguttara Nikāya
  • MKK =  Mūlamadhyamakakārika (= the foundational text of the Madhyamaka school composed by Nāgārjuna.)
  • Pali Canon = the standard collection of scriptures in the Theravada Buddhist tradition, as preserved in the Pāli language.
  • Vinaya: the division of the Buddhist canon (Tripitaka) containing the rules and procedures that govern the Buddhist Sangha or monastic life.


We hope you will enjoy the course!