Vladimir Montlevich

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Vladimir Montlevich was born on February 1st 1940 in Leningrad. Studied at school no 203, which carried the name Griboyedov and graduated from high school with golden medal in 1957. Already in school Montlevich had great interest towards astrology and bug science or entomology, would of course be more accurate to say towards astronomy.

Additionally Montlevich has had a long-term passion towards art, art history and art theory .

First educational institution after high school was higher education in radio communication but the second year made it clear that the chosen profession was wrong and art and history became prioritized.

In 1963 the stage of spiritual searching and formation began, which brought him to the neo-Christian circles located in St. Petersburg - brothers Tantshik, Kirill Vovk, Vladimir Novik.

But then arrived Taoism and old Chinese philosophy, later came Hinduism, which led to the fact that in 1964 when there were 10 days left to graduation, Montlevich left the institution concluding that it would be wrong to dedicate himself to radio communication and electronics.

Then followed a period working as a restaurateur of graphics at Ermitage and in 1967 Montlevich started to study at the Art Academy where starting in 1969 he studied art theory and history and where he graduated from in 1972.

In 1969 he was already a younger science worker at the museum of history, religion and atheism of Kaasan church where he was the deputy head of Buddhist department.

At the same time he continued studying tibetan in Leningrad University under the guidance of Kuznetsov.

Montlevich considers himself being a Buddhist already in 1965 (Mahayana , Madhyamika -prasanghika ).

By that time he had processed all the top literature of Russian orientalists - Stsherbatskii , Pozdneyev , Vassilyev, Oldenburg, Minayev etc.

In 1969 the famous meeting took place with guru Bidja Dandaron , which Montlevich considers an extremely important event in his life.

Starting from that moment he becomes a dedicated and inseparable student of Dandaron . In 1972 he is arrested by communists and Montlevich spends 2 years in prison.

From 1974 Montlevich’s life and activity were mostly linked to Buddhism, which firstly means studying, translating and following Buddhist practices .

Montlevich has been known for decades in the circles of Buddhists and orientalists as one of the leading, most active persons who directs his attention to the practical side of Buddhism and who, for decades, has been dedicated to distributing and popularizing the teachings of his guru Bidja Dandaron in Russia.

In 1987 Montlevich was the first to fight the Soviet to return the temple of St. Petersburg to Buddhists.

These would be the things that Montlevich would usually say about himself.

I would add that one cannot find a more modest person who is so quiet about his contribution to Russian Buddhism.

And we could make a long list of his contributions, which would contain the stupas built to guru Dandaron after guru’s death, a great amount of translations and literature, which have partly been published as books.

A special contribution is a list of Russian orientalists executed and destroyed by the communists together with the biographies of those repressed, which are also available on the Internet. link to Montlevich’s webpage Pravidya "Люди и судьбы "