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Sumeru Directory History

Sumeru Directory History: This site is hosted by John Harvey Negru [Karma Yönten Gyatso], publisher at the Sumeru Press. During the 1980s, he was Coordinator for the Toronto Buddhist Federation and Toronto Coordinator for the Buddhist Council of Canada, and has since maintained extensive contacts within Buddhist communities across Canada. In 2009, he responded to a request by George Klima, administrator of the HTML site “Buddhism in Canada”, to upgrade it with web 2.0 features. The new site was launched, but a year later George closed it down, tired after 16 years of hard work as site admin.

Believing that a directory of Buddhist organizations throughout Canada is an invaluable resource that should not be abandoned, Sumeru took up the challenge of launching a new site dedicated to that goal. This is the result of that effort.

While the original data has come in no small measure from the old Buddhism in Canada site, we have discovered in the process of creating this guide that much of the Buddhism in Canada data was seriously out of date and wrong. Unfortunately, much of that wrong information was also picked up and duplicated by sites around the world who cut-and-pasted it into their sites, and then never went back to it. Sectarian sites listed their own affiliates, but nobody else’s. Small organizations have come and gone, moved, merged, and so on.

Between 2011 and 2013, Mr. Negru developed and conducted the first national sociological study of Canadian Buddhist organizations, in association with the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Toronto. The key findings from that study were published in The Journal of Global Buddhism in 2013. Here is the link:

The directory was updated in 2014 to include much of the information that various centres contributed to the study.

In 2016, links to the government of Canada’s charitable status details were added for all relevant Buddhist organizations, in the interest of transparency and accountability.

On a positive note, new Buddhist organizations continue to spring up and many established organizations have moved into the digital age with websites, blogs and Facebook pages of their own. Those sites provide much more current, updated information than a directory could contain or organize, so we have opted to keep our information as brief and direct as possible. We have used those digital resources extensively to update our records to give a true and accurate picture of dharma activity in Canada today. We encourage users to visit the listed websites or contact the organizations directly for details about their teachers, practices and activities.

In 2022, he updated the entire directory, noting openings, closures, moves, technological updates, checking databases around the world, etc. That data will be analyzed and reported upon in due course, but for now, this represents the best, most complete, most up-to-date information in the world on Canadian Buddhist organizations. Organizations that opened after the previous update (about 50 of them) will be added in Spring 2022.

Please keep us informed of changes, emailing us at