The Main Instructor of the
Trikāya Tibetan Language Academy:
Erick Tsiknopoulos has worked as a professional Tibetan-English translator, interpreter and Tibetan language teacher since 2008, and has been teaching Tibetan language 2011. He is highly literate in both Classical and Modern Literary Tibetan, and has an advanced degree of fluency in Colloquial Tibetan.
Erick Tsiknopoulos started teaching Tibetan in 2011, and founded the Trikāya Tibetan Language Academy in 2020. Since then he has taught Tibetan language courses and seminars on Buddhist texts full-time, specializing in the development of learning materials and instructional methods for Western and East Asian students.
He is motivated by an aspiration to help others learn the Tibetan language in more effective and efficient ways — whether in their own personal spiritual practice or in meditation retreats, or as Tibetan translators, interpreters, scholars, academics and researchers.
As the executive director of the Trikāya Tibetan Language Academy, Trikāya Translation Services and the Trikāya Translation Committee, Erick Tsiknopoulos strives to fulfill the credo of Trikāya Tibetan Language Academy:
“Humbly serve the Tibetan language, genuinely study the Tibetan language, and sincerely teach the Tibetan language to the people of this world.”
– The Credo of the Trikāya Tibetan Language Academy
Erick Tsiknopoulos lived for 11 years in the Himalayan regions of India and Nepal among the Tibetan community, from 2008 to 2019.
There he studied Tibetan language and Buddhist philosophy intensively in a culturally immersive environment.
After many years of diligence in his studies of Classical, Colloquial and Modern Literary Tibetan, Erick Tsiknopoulos mastered the art of Tibetan translation.
In India he studied Tibetan language, literature and Buddhism at various institutions of Tibetan learning. These include:
- The Manjushree Center for Tibetan Culture (Darjeeling)
Thosam Ling Institute (Sidhpur)
- Dzongsar Shedra (Chauntra)
- The Tibetan Library of Works and Archives (Dharamsala)
- Esukhia (McLeod Ganj)
- Namgyal Monastery (McLeod Ganj)
- The Institute of Buddhist Dialectics (McLeod Ganj)
Erick Tsiknopoulos has been working professionally as an Tibetan-English translator and interpreter since 2009. Since then he has produced English translations of several hundred Tibetan texts.
Many of his translations have been published in electronic and printed book form, and some are available for purchase on Amazon.com. Most of his translated works are planned for release in future publications.
His works have been cited in numerous academic papers and publications, and referenced on many websites.
He is a regular contributor to the Dharma Dictionary (rywiki.tsadra.org), where he has written over 2100 English definitions for Tibetan terms.
From a young age, Erick Tsiknopoulos has always been fascinated by languages, and has therefore studied many languages to varying degrees. These include, primarily, Tibetan, Japanese, Chinese (Mandarin and Classical), Pāḷi, Sanskrit, Hindi (Hindustani), Romanian (Daco-Romanian) and Greek; but also, to a lesser extent, Spanish, Russian, Nepali (Gorkhali), Thai, Bulgarian, Persian (Farsi) and Latin.
He also occasionally studies Arabic, Turkish, Indonesian (Malay), Dzongkha (Bhutanese), German, Esperanto and Old English (Anglo-Saxon).
He utilizes his knowledge of these languages in his Tibetan classes, in order to supplement the overall linguistic frame of reference. In this context, the student is able to relate Tibetan to other languages, and gain clarity on certain points of grammar and pronunciation.
“His level of aptitude in literary and classical Tibetan language is immense; and his spoken Tibetan language and powers of expression are excellent. In particular, he has trained and continues to train in a profound and deep research of the Buddhist teachings.
He is a resourceful young man of strong intelligence, who holds an aspiration to spread and promulgate Buddhism in a far-reaching way. And he is someone who has vast future ambitions to accomplish great service for the Buddhist teachings in their entirety; due to the fact that he has the aim of helping to establish peace and happiness in the world.”
– Gen Lobzang Gyatso, Tibetan scholar and language teacher, former monk from Drepung Loseling Monastery and teacher at Esukhia, in his recommendation letter for Erick Tsiknopoulos (2013).