Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns

Jun 5, 2019 | Views: 25,208

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Buddhist nuns, otherwise known as bhikkhuni (Pali) or bhiksuni (Sanskrit) are fully ordained female Buddhist monastics. In Thailand, these nuns endure a lot of hardships. From arson and threats to the huge resistance in a male-dominated culture, they have to work very hard to be accepted and to emerge as religious leaders in their own right. Watch this eye-opening documentary below as the host Zainab Salbi takes us on a journey into the lives of some of Thailand’s renegade nuns. One of them renounced her successful life as a mother, scholar and TV personality to become an ordained nun as this is what makes her complete – spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

 

About the Documentary Host, Zainab Salbi

Zainab Salbi, the founder of Women for Women International was named one of the top 25 women who are changing the world by Oprah

Zainab Salbi, the founder of Women for Women International was named one of the top 25 women who are changing the world by Oprah

Iraqi-born Zainab Salbi is the founder of Women for Women International, an organisation that helps women who are victims of war, especially those who have been physically abused and suffer from poverty due to war.

Her humanitarian and development efforts have impacted over 400,000 women in eight different war-torn areas, distributing more than $100 million worth of aid and microcredit loans, which helped over 1.7 million families. Salbi’s main philosophy is that access to education and resources can create lasting change in the lives of many women.

Born in 1969, Salbi herself has had first-hand experience of war in Baghdad. Growing up during the Iran-Iraq war, she experienced a lot of fear due to her family’s close relationship with Saddam Hussein. Her father was Saddam’s personal pilot and head of the Iraq Civil Aviation Authority. Her family suffered a lot psychologically under his regime.

Fearing that little Salbi might be targeted by Saddam as she was growing up fast to be an attractive young lady, her mother arranged for her to be married to an older Iraqi living in the United States when she was 19. Her marriage turned out to be abusive and she escaped after three months, but was unable to return to Iraq due to the First Gulf War.

It was through her experience with war that Salbi became sensitive towards the plight of women in war. A few years after arriving in the US, she heard about the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina and decided to do something. Together with her second husband, Amjad Atallah, they took action by establishing Women for Women International. At only 23 years old, Salbi dedicated her life in service of women war survivors. In 1993 her group began assisting 33 Bosnian and Croatian women.

Salbi launched her talk show, The Nidaa Show, in 2015 with TLC Arabia, and the show was aired across 22 countries in the Arab World. She dedicated the show to Arab and Muslim women, sharing their stories, challenges, and accomplishments. She started it with her first interview on Oprah Winfrey, which was historical, winning her several awards. She became the #1 Most Influential Arab Women by Arabian Business. Foreign Policy Magazine recognised her as one of the 100 Global Thinkers in the World. In People Magazine, Oprah named her as one of the top 25 women who are changing the world.

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Salbi then launched The Zainab Salbi Project original series with Huffington Post (2016), #MeToo, Now What? with PBS (2018), and Through Her Eyes with Zainab Salbi original series with Yahoo News (2019).

Salbi is also the author of her best-selling memoir, Between Two Worlds: Escape from Tyranny: Growing Up in the Shadow of Saddam. Other books she authored are The Other Side of War: Women’s Stories of Survival & Hope, If You Knew Me You Would Care, and Freedom Is an Inside Job: Owning Our Darkness and Our Light to Heal Ourselves and the World.

In the Huffington post series called The Zainab Salbi Project, Salbi probed into what it is like to be female spiritual leaders in Thailand, and the difficulties, challenges, as well as obstacles they face just because they are women. What we are about to learn is mind-blowing, especially coming from a country where Buddhism is deeply rooted.

 

Renegade Female Monks Of Thailand, The Zainab Salbi Project, Episode 3

Or view the video on YouTube at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MjZODhD4YU
 

The Tradition Of Ordaining Buddhist Nuns In The Theravada Tradition

Buddhist nuns or bhikkhunis, just like bhikkhus (male monks) live by the Vinaya vows. The very first ordained Buddhist nun or bhikkhuni by Lord Buddha was Buddha’s own aunt and foster-mother, Mahapajapati Gotami. She was the first female to seek ordination for women directly from Gautama Buddha and this was when the tradition of ordaining Buddhist nuns began. Since the first ordination of nuns and for several hundreds of years after, they were of equal status to their male counterparts, the male monks.

Mahapajapati Gotami, the first Buddhist nun ordained by Buddha Shakyamuni

Mahapajapati Gotami, the first Buddhist nun ordained by Buddha Shakyamuni

In the past, the female monastic lineage could only be found in Mahayana Buddhism, which was predominant in countries like China, Taiwan, Korea, and Vietnam. Recently, full monastic vows in the Theravada and Vajrayana tradition are also being sought after. However, there are many conservatives who still think that the ordination of Buddhist nuns done today are not valid.

According to the Buddha, women are just as capable as men in the practice of the Dharma and have the potential to achieve enlightenment. Records of sayings and deeds of pre-eminent Buddhist nuns can be found in the early Buddhist schools, such as the collection of famous poems composed by the elder nuns about enlightenment that are preserved in the Pali Canon.

The only difference between monks and nuns in the Theravadin tradition is the additional vows for nuns. These vows are known as the Eight Garudhammas, which some contest to be an attempt to push women into an inferior role, and are not really the teachings of Gautama Buddha. Based on the Garudhammas, nuns are subordinate to and reliant upon monks.

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Due to the difficulties and hardships that nuns have to endure, several historical places where the ordination of Buddhist nuns were once practiced have now faded out. According to historians, the order of Buddhist nuns flourished for 1,000 years in India and Sri Lanka, but due to the spread of Islam and the impact of various conflicts and political problems, these practices soon disappeared.

Hence, different forms of renunciation have been developed throughout the different Buddhist traditions. For example, women take the vows of sramaneri (novitiates) in Tibetan Buddhism, also known as Vajrayana Buddhism. As for the Theravadin tradition, women may choose to take on a shorter, informal set of vows which are similar to the sramaneri vows.

It is believed that between the 11th and 13th centuries, the Theravadin tradition of ordaining nuns died out and no new nuns were ordained. Since Thailand is traditionally ruled by a patriarchal society, the all-male officials of the Buddhist Sangha Supreme Council of Thailand enacted a ruling that forbids the ordination of nuns as it is deemed impossible without a living tradition.

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According to Thailand’s interpretation of the Theravada Buddhist scripture, a woman can only be ordained as a full-fledged Buddhist nun if there are 10 monks and 10 nuns present. Since there are no Buddhist nuns in Thailand, ordinations cannot take place. In 1928, female ordination was made illegal in Thailand.

Seen as rebels threatening the all-male monastic status quo, many female monastics such as Ven. Dhammananda have sought ordination with senior Buddhist nuns outside their tradition. With the revival of Buddhist nuns within the Theravada tradition in India, Sri Lanka, Germany, Indonesia, USA and Australia, this has been made possible. This new generation of nuns, however, are met with much resistance.

In conservative Thailand, the Buddhist clergy does not recognise ordained nuns. Females can only become maechi (novice nuns or female lay vow-holder), although currently there are around 270 ordained Buddhist nuns living in female monasteries across the country’s 76 provinces. Maechi are Buddhist laywomen who live the life of an ascetic, they hold the Eight or Ten Precepts, which are more than the Five Precepts taken by lay practitioners.

Buddhist nuns walk in the garden of the Sathira-Dhammasathan Buddhist meditation centre in Bangkok

With about 300,000 fully ordained monks, Thailand as a Buddhist country has a complex connection between the state and clergy. As such, the latter holds great influence and power within the system of governance. Even though the constitution of Thailand holds a clause that defends the freedom of religion, the male monks or bhikkhus used their influence on Thai authorities to ban the ordination of females in Thailand.

In a country where women are highly involved in science, education, and business, the Thai Buddhists’ customary exclusion of women seems strangely out of place. As such, women who wish to receive ordination into the Sangha will have to travel abroad. Sri Lanka is one of the countries that share the same school of Theravada Buddhism where female ordination was legalised in 1998.

Novice nuns, also known as maechi (female lay vow-holder), clad in white chanting mantras

Novice nuns, also known as maechi (female lay vow-holder), clad in white chanting mantras

In 2003, Venerable Dhammananda was the first Thai woman to receive full ordination as a Buddhist nun of the Theravada tradition in Sri Lanka. She is the Abbess of Songdhammakalyani Monastery, the first Buddhist nun centre in Thailand. Established in 1960, the monastery was founded by her mother Ven. Ta Tao Fa who was a Mahayana nun. The monastery was originally known as Wat Songdhammakalyani, the temple of women who uphold the Dharma.

Unfortunately, unlike their male counterparts, ordained nuns receive no support in funding and benefits from the government. They also face strong objections to their status and are often subjected to abuses and threats from the public. Despite this, more women are seeking ordination, but the backlash against them has also increased.

The International Women’s Meditation Center Foundation in Rayong, founded by Ven. Dr. Lee, has been the target of numerous attacks. In March 2016, a dormitory was set ablaze by arsonists. The Bangkok Post published that a group of drunkards shouted their intentions to burn down the centre for daring to ordain women. In another incident, a group of gun-wielding men destroyed the centre’s surveillance equipment after breaking into the centre. Despite Ven. Dr. Lee facing constant threats to her life and centre, she refuses to be intimidated and continues to run her centre as she has over 50 monastics whom she is responsible for.

Buddhist nuns receiving alms from the general public

Buddhist nuns receiving alms from the general public

The Songdhammakalyani Monastery, on the other hand, has been relatively free from abuse and danger. Ven. Dhammananda said that her centre is supported by a large percentage of the locals. She speculated that the incident in Rayong could be a ‘personal’ problem as the Rayong centre was new and one of the only two nuns there, Ven. Dr. Lee, is an American who is perceived to be an ‘outsider’ by the local people. Ven. Dhammananda said, estimating that 50% of the local people support them.

“We don’t have problems with the local community here, but we have problems when we deal with the government.”
~ Ven. Dhammananda

Source: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/pg7j5g/the-buddha-said-all-were-equal-thailands-female-monks-fight-for-recognition

Although a clause defending the practice of religious freedom exists in the Thai constitution, there is an intention to revoke this clause, which will make the situation worse for the nuns in Thailand. The Thai immigration authority has allegedly rejected visa applications from Sri Lankan monks who intended to ordain women in the country during their visits. Buddhist nuns have also faced threats of arrest on charges for impersonating monks, a civil offence in Thailand.

The lay people paying respect to Buddhist nuns

Lay people paying respect to Buddhist nuns

At Songdhammakalyani Monastery, the nuns’ strategy is to avoid dealing with people who don’t support them as much as possible. Ven. Dhammananda said with the logic of a pragmatic practitioner,

“We don’t burden ourselves with their ignorance. If every step we take we have to care that we get approval, then we cannot do anything. Because I am an academic I always check what the text says, and then I am reassured that we are on the right path.” ~ Ven. Dharmmananda

Source: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/pg7j5g/the-buddha-said-all-were-equal-thailands-female-monks-fight-for-recognition

Ven. Dhammananda further explained that the Buddha ordained nuns thousands of years ago, and this was written into the Buddhist scripture as “more or less” equal to men. Another Buddhist nun, Ven. Dhammacetana replied to the question of the difficulties in ordaining nuns that seemed to have been forgotten by the Thai society,

“It is still a world ruled by men, everywhere. Before the Buddha, women were viewed as lower than animals until the Buddha said all were equal, but after the Buddha, this was mostly forgotten.” ~ Ven. Dhammacetana

Source: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/pg7j5g/the-buddha-said-all-were-equal-thailands-female-monks-fight-for-recognition target=”_blank”

Although gender biasness and institutional sexism is not a deterrent for women who want to become nuns, it is affecting some demographics more than others. Ven. Dhammananda shared that women who were educated with a degree or above make up more than two-thirds of those ordained as nuns annually. Overall in Thailand, less than a third of the total population have a degree.

Educated women have the privilege of time to research on the internet and discuss with others on the existence of ordained nuns. Those who are not as educated or in less privileged positions would have lesser opportunities to learn of the possibility of ordination and would certainly be deterred by the male monks should they broach the subject.

Buddhist nuns who had lived a worldly life and had careers before ordination can be of valuable service to other women, they can care for the sick and counsel women on issues which they may be uncomfortable sharing with monks.

Ven. Dhammananda told a story about a woman who stayed at her monastery in-between her chemotherapy sessions for breast cancer as she had no one to look after her at home. “It is very sad”, said Ven. Dhammananda and then surprisingly broke out with a smile, “But I told her not to worry; when you get to our age, what do you need breasts for anyway?” In this story, it shows how female monastics are able to play the role in taking care of the sick who have no one to turn to or talk to about sensitive subjects, be it medical or otherwise.

Training to be novice nuns before the ordination ceremony

Training to be novice nuns before ordination ceremony

The number of Buddhist nuns are constantly increasing as they patiently educate the public and gradually gain their approval. With monks having been accused of many recorded misdeeds, including child abuse, instigation of racial hatred and sexual abuse, the nuns could potentially play the influencing role for some reformation in Thailand. They are also powerful representation for the call on gender equality.

On the role of Songdhammakalyani Monastery, Ven. Dhammananda concluded in tandem with the Buddhist tenet of compassion, “It is our intention to provide a place for all women to come, to practice, and to feel at home.”

Annually, in April and December, Ven. Dhammananda will hold ordination ceremonies for women to be ordained into the Buddhist order as novice nuns at her monastery. These women, from young to old, bravely defy the Thai Buddhist tradition by being ordained and by having their heads shaved, staying in the monastery for nine days and replacing their white garments for the saffron robes, same as those of male monks.

However, since the ordination of bhikkhunis or nuns are banned in Thailand, any women who wish to become a full-fledged nun will have to go to countries where female ordinations are accepted, such as in Sri Lanka.

 

Brief Bio on Venerable Dhammananda

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At the age of 40 in 2003, Dr. Chatsumarn Kabilsingh received her name Venerable Dhammananda upon ordination into the sangha under the ordination lineage of Syamopali from the Dambulla chapter in Sri Lanka.

Prior to her ordination, she taught for 27 years in the Department of Philosophy and Religion at Thammasat University, Bangkok and is a well-known author of many contemporary books on Asian Buddhism and issues of women’s position in the society. Being an illustrious student of Theravada Buddhism, she even hosted her own TV show which aired in the mid-80s on Buddhist practices.

At 74, she is now the Abbess and most senior female monk at Songdhammakalyani Monastery in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand. She laughs at being often mistaken as a male monk with her shaved head and saffron robe, especially when entering female washrooms.

Because no monk in Thailand would ordain her, Ven. Dhammananda went abroad to Sri Lanka in 2003 to be ordained in the Theravada tradition, which is practised throughout Southeast Asia. She was the first woman in Thailand to receive her ordination vows.

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Before going for her ordination and taking on celibacy, she divorced her husband and explained her decision to her three sons, keeping good terms with them. Returning to Thailand, Ven. Dhammananda continues to face hostility and censure from the public, but she never gave up in propagating the path for females to take ordination and Buddhist practices.

The monastery which she heads, Songdhammakalyani Monastery, was established by her mother after her own ordination in Taiwan. She founded the monastery in 1960 upon purchasing the land from the Queen of King Rama VI. Like China, Taiwan allows females to be ordained into the Mahayana tradition, a tradition more commonly practised there. Ven. Dhammananda’s grandmother also went overseas to be ordained as a nun.

Ven. Dhammananda giving teachings to her disciples

Ven. Dhammananda giving teachings to her disciples

The Songdhammakalyani Monastery is the first all-female monastery in Nakhon Pathom, just 53 km west of Bangkok. It is the first temple in Thailand built by women, for women. Songdhammakalyani Monastery currently houses 7 of the 270 Buddhist nuns in Thailand, all of them were ordained overseas.

Labelled in Thailand as a dangerous dissident, Ven. Dhammananda has since ordained over 700 working women. These women spend 9 days observing the life of a nun and then return to their lives outside.

She has been working with His Holiness the Dalai Lama since 1980 on the ordination of Buddhist nuns, as she found that currently there are only female novices in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. So far, she has not been successful with this as His Holiness said he will wait to see if other senior monks would consider joining him or otherwise. Ven. Dhammananda is not very hopeful about that happening any time soon. She has also travelled to Myanmar with the same motivation to help women become nuns, but found it has been impossible. In Myanmar, if a nun is ordained in Sri Lanka, she will be disrobed and sent to prison.

An affectionate moment with her dog

Ven. Dhammananda having an affectionate moment with her dog

Looking back, Ven. Dhammananda was inspired by her parents’ courage. Her mother once rode a motorbike all the way to Singapore from Bangkok to impress her male students. Her father was an opposition politician who was often jailed. In her own words, “I never realized how brave they were until I grew up”.

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More information about Ven. Dhammananda’s monastery:

Songdhammakalyani Monastery

Address:
195 Petkasem Highway, Muang District,
Nakhonpathom,
73000 Thailand

Tel: +66 34 258 270 (front desk)
Front desk opening hours (phone calls/visitors): 8.30 AM – 5 PM
Email: dhammananda9d@gmail.com

Map to the Songdhammakalyani Monastery. Click to enlarge


Map to the Songdhammakalyani Monastery. Click to enlarge.

 

Brief Bio On Venerable Dr. Lee

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58-year-old Leaura Naomi is known as Bhikkhuni Dr. Lee after she was ordained into the sangha. She is an American Buddhist nun who went to Thailand in support of Thai women who wish to be nuns, braving strong criticism and backlash from the Thai Buddhist clergy who oppose the ordination of nuns.

With the setup of the Theravada Buddhist monastery in Rayong, called the International Women’s Meditation Center Foundation, she faced many threats of kidnap, assault and arson. One of her buildings was set ablaze by a group of drunk men. In another incident, the American Embassy came to her rescue after she called them in desperation as her centre was surrounded by a gang of armed men. They had entered the compound and destroyed the surveillance system.

Ven. Dr. Lee was born in Yonkers, New York to a Christian family and taught at Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan universities after graduating from Colorado University with a Ph.D. in geography. At 31, she was ordained as a Buddhist nun in Colorado and went to Thailand in the year 2000. She had read of Thailand being a Theravada Buddhist country with more than 300,000 monks and novices in 30,000 temples. With the missing element of Buddhist nuns, she decided to introduce this new cultural element to the Thais. Ven. Dr. Lee is the only American Buddhist nun residing in Thailand amongst the few hundreds of Thai nuns who are still not recognised.

Ven. Dr. Lee with young disciples at The International Women’s Meditation Center Foundation

Ven. Dr. Lee with young disciples at The International Women’s Meditation Center Foundation

The International Women’s Meditation Center Foundation aims to create gender equality in Buddhism, by establishing nuns as social leaders in Thailand and Myanmar. In Thailand, a female child could be sold for as low as USD100 due to poverty and family hardship. Hence, Ven. Dr. Lee’s monastery offers a sanctuary for underprivileged female children to learn and grow in safety.

More information about Ven. Dr. Lee’s monastery:

International Women’s Meditation Center Foundation

Address:
81/38 Mu 6, Ban Nern Soutong Road
Tapong, Amper Muang, Rayong
21000 Thailand

Phone: +66 (0)38-664-904
Mobile: +66 (0)85-173-8737
E-mail: drlee2546@gmail.com

Map to International Women’s Meditation Center, Rayong. Click to enlarge.


Map to International Women’s Meditation Center, Rayong. Click to enlarge.

 

Thoughts from Phra Thepvisudthikawee of the Buddhist Protection Centre who is against the Bhikkhuni tradition

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The Secretary-General of the Buddhism Protection Center of Thailand, Phra Tepvisutthikawee said that it is pointless to have any discussion on the ordination of Buddhist nuns. He mentioned that since it is not permitted under the Dhamma Vinaya, the question of fairness should not even arise. Theravada Buddhism operates on the monastic rules interpreted from the collection of scriptures in the Pali Canon.

From Zainab’s interview with Phra Thepvisudthikawee, it is obvious that his view does not encourage equality in ordained nuns. However, this is not necessarily the case with other male Buddhist leaders such as His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, who had on numerous occasions stated that he believed women should be treated equally in having access to a full Buddhist nun ordination. Unfortunately, His Holiness claims he does not have the authority to implement such ordination for the entire Buddhist sangha or community.

 

Conclusion

After female monastic practice phased out between the 11th and 13th centuries due to political turmoil, controversy and obstacles, the tradition of ordaining nuns, which was started by Buddha 2,500 years ago, is finally going through a slow revival. The renascence of Buddhist nun in countries like Sri Lanka, Taiwan, and China is made possible through the efforts of a few powerful ordained female monastic leaders such as, Ven. Dhammananda and Ven. Dr. Lee who will fight dharmically to restore the bhikkhuni lineage back into society.

It is not right for the Buddhist Sangha Supreme Council of Thailand, which comprises of all-male council members, to enact the ruling in 1928 that forbids the ordination of Buddhist nuns. This rule is still in force to this day, although the Thai constitution provides for freedom of religion.

By right, men and women should have equal opportunities to receive monastic ordination. This discrimination is what women in Thailand are working hard to overcome and it is what Ven. Dhammananda and Ven. Dr. Lee are facing. They are seeking the equality that Buddha had espoused 2,500 years ago with the first ordination of his aunt and foster mother, Mahapajapati Gotami as a nun.

Shaving the head in preparation of ordination as a novice nun.

Shaving the head in preparation of ordination as a novice nun.

The discrimination that Buddhist nuns in Thailand face is very much similar to the discrimination against Dorje Shugden practitioners. The so-called leaders who swore to uphold the constitutional rights of the people are the ones who are breaking it for their own self-serving agendas. While the women in Thailand seek to overcome the ban on female monasticism, Dorje Shugden practitioners around the world seek to overcome the ban on the worship of an established Dharma Protector practice. Such forms of discrimination have no place in today’s society where every modern democratic government promises the freedom to practice whatever religion they choose. The only way to fight discrimination is to bring awareness to the issue so that more people will question the validity of the discrimination.

Another way to fight the discrimination against having Buddhist nuns is by ordaining more nuns and creating temples, or centres managed by female monastics all over the world. Establishing female ordination as a mainstream practice will make it harder for anyone to impose gender-based discrimination. People like Ven. Dhammananda and Ven. Dr. Lee are champions of female ordination and they will be the source of inspiration for many more Buddhist nuns to come. The obstacles and great hardships they endure in bringing equality to women in Buddhism make them truly great heroines. Give them your support. Write them, visit them and write into the authorities for them. Bring more media attention to their plight and pray for them to succeed. Women’s spirituality are just as important as men’s and that is a fact of existence.

 

Sources:

  • Venerable Dr. Pannavati, Thai Nuns, Women and Children, 2019, http://pannavati.org/thai-nuns/ (accessed: 9 April 2019)
  • England, Charlotte, Broadly., ‘The Buddha Said All Were Equal’: Thailand’s Female Monks Fight for Recognition’, 11 May 2016, https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/pg7j5g/the-buddha-said-all-were-equal-thailands-female-monks-fight-for-recognition (accessed: 18 April 2019)
  • Ehrlich, Richard S, Asia Times: Liberation Struggle for Thai Buddhist Nuns, 3 June 2017, https://www.asiatimes.com/2017/06/article/liberation-struggle-thai-buddhist-nuns/ (accessed: 19 April 2019)
  • Palet, Laura Secorun, Provocateurs: Thailand’s Rebel Buddhist Nun, 19 April 2016, https://www.ozy.com/provocateurs/thailands-rebel-buddhist-nun/66506 (accessed: 19 April 2019)
  • Perawongmetha, Athit, Independent: In photos: Thailand’s rebel female Buddhist monks defying tradition, 12 January 2019, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/thailand-rebel-female-buddhist-monks-photos-defy-tradition-pictures-a8715631.html (accessed: 5 May 2019)
  • Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia: Bhikkhuni, 4 May 2019, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhikkhun%C4%AB (accessed: 7 May 2019)
  • Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia: Mahapajapati Gotami, 17 March 2019, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahapajapati_Gotami#cite_note-buddhanet-2 (accessed: 7 May 2019)

 

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10 Responses to Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns

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  1. Pastor Albert on Jul 8, 2019 at 5:34 pm

    This is so familiar, being a Dorje Shugden practitioners, I can understand the feeling of being discriminated, beside the discrimination, you don’t get the support you need too to continue your spiritual practice. In Buddhism, it is very bad Karma when you are stopping or creating obstacles for anyone to practice Dharma.

    Discrimination not only happened in the social world, but also in the Sangha community, Buddha taught us to see everyone as equal, in the eyes of Buddha, whether you are male or female, human, animals, gods, etc, all life form to them are equally important, there is no such thing as who is more superior and who is not, because all sentient beings also has the quality to gaining enlightenment.

    It is not easy for Venerable Dhammananda, she has to overcome the rejection from her family, then she have to travel abroad to get ordained, and back to Thailand to open a centre and yet, people are trying to stop it. Why can’t the others just focus on their own practice and leave them to do what they want? they are not doing any crime, they are not hurting anyone, it’s better to spend the same amount of effort and time to catch the criminals and not let just police to do it, then the country will be a very safe place to live in.

  2. Ummamageswari on Jul 2, 2019 at 12:34 pm

    Thank you so much for this article. This article is mainly about Thailand’s renegade yet powerful Buddhist nuns. By reading this article, i get to know that Buddhist nuns, are known as bhikkhuni (Pali) or bhiksuni (Sanskrit) where they are fully ordained female Buddhist monastics.

    From threats to the huge resistance in a male-dominated culture, Buddhist nuns have to work very hard to be accepted and to emerge as religious leaders in their own right. Thank you.

  3. Chris on Jun 15, 2019 at 4:44 am

    Thank you, Rinpoche and the blog team for this excellent article. From this article, we can clearly see the struggle of female monastic in Thailand and the challenges they face in their daily lives. Even though the problem of female ordination in Thailand seems to be a religious issue, it is in fact more complicated that it seems.

    It is inspiring to see courageous nuns that fight against social norms to be ordained. They are literally fighting for their spirituality. People like Venerable Dhammananda and Venerable Dr Lee fought against all odds to set up their monastery in Thailand and began the tradition of ordaining women.

    Even after Venerable Dr Lee’s monastery was attacked several times, she refused to leave the country against the advise of the embassy. She is willing to risk her life to take care of the spirituality of the nuns who are in her monastery. She is a true following of Buddha’s teachings which is to be selfless.

  4. Samfoonheei on Jun 10, 2019 at 1:42 pm

    Thailand has an ancient culture that only men can become monks and novices in Thailand under a Buddhist order that, has forbidden the ordination of women. The country does not recognize female monks or novices even till today. A growing number of women defy generations of Thai Buddhist tradition by becoming ordained as novice monks at the un recognised all-female monastery. Thailand’s first female monk 74 year old Dhammananda Bhikkhuni, flew to Sri Lanka to be ordained against the odd. Those who wanted to be a nun or novices ,were all ordained abroad. Till today female Buddhist monastics in Thailand continue to fight for their right to practice Buddhism . Interesting read of the brief biography on Venerable Dhammananda and Venerable Dr. Lee. How they gone through great hardships, discrimination and against the many odds in bringing equality to women in Buddhism in Thailand. May both continue with their good work .
    Thank you Rinpoche for this inspiring post of two great heroines.

  5. Yee Yin on Jun 10, 2019 at 12:02 pm

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing with us this interesting article. It is very sad to see how the monk community in Thailand discriminates the nuns. To me, this is very hypocritical. If these monks really believe in Buddha’s teachings, they should understand that all beings have the potential to become a Buddha.

    According to Lamrim, the perfect condition to practice Dharma and achieve enlightenment is in human form that is without physical or mental disability. There is no mention of female having limited ability to gain realisations. When someone wants to renounce, we should rejoice and give full support. But the Thai monks make the full ordination a privilege of the male gender.

    The origin of the 8 Garudhamma is dubious, it might not have come from Buddha Shakyamuni himself. Buddha Shakyamuni was very respectful to female, this can be seen by how he had given permission to allow his aunt/step mother to become an ordained Sangha and gave the highest honour of principal female disciple to Uppalavanna who was a prostitute before she became a nun. Female does have the same ability to achieve enlightenment. If we want Buddhism to spread further and wider, we should encourage more people to renounce and become a Sangha member regardless of their gender.

  6. Tsa Tsa Ong on Jun 8, 2019 at 2:09 pm

    This is truly an inspiring story about females going against all odds to become ordained nuns. They will be the source of inspiration for many more Buddhist nuns to come. The obstacles and great hardships they endure in bringing equality to women in Buddhism make them truly great heroines. Thank you very much Rinpoche and blog team for sharing this inspring story. ?????

  7. Stella Cheang on Jun 6, 2019 at 10:45 am

    Man made rules due to self-serving agenda, fear and ignorance hinder mankind’s path to enlightenment. The discrimination that Buddhist nuns in Thailand face is a typical example. Thailand, known for the reverence to Buddhism, is only half true. Quoting selective source of scripture, the female population is not recognised to be ordained under Thailand Theravadin traditions. In a direct manner, the Thai monastic establishments promote gender biasness and institutionalise sexism by deterring women to become nuns. May the people in position take charge and make the change faster and better. Thank you for this article.

  8. Bradley Kassian on Jun 5, 2019 at 6:23 pm

    The Bhikkhuni ordination might be a complicated prossess in Thailand but I do hope one day real change will come. Buddha did ordain women into the Sangha, and women are just as capable as men at attaining enlightenment. The discrimination against the nuns currently in Thailand is disheartening but I do hope they pull through. Bans do nothing but divide people, we need to create a culture of tolerance and unify people. The nuns have my deepest respect, as they have devoted their life to renunciation and helping sentient beings.

  9. Pastor Adeline Woon on Jun 5, 2019 at 2:41 pm

    The Bhikkhuni ordination may be a religious issue but it does not seem to be a pure and straightforward one. As we dwell into the core of the matter, we can see that there are certain individuals of the opposite gender (monks and politicians) parties who are using religion to control people and finances, unfortunately. This is not something new but a chronic one that is purely discriminating against the female gender as a whole.

    The discrimination, especially to the Buddhist nuns in Thailand, is identical to the discrimination against Dorje Shugden practitioners. Those in authority who are supposed to uphold the constitutional rights of the people decided to break the rules solely for their personal agendas including money, fame and power. The women in Thailand and those ordained in the Thai Forest tradition and etc. around the world are now coming together to seek ways to overcome the ban on female monasticism. Similarly, the Dorje Shugden practitioners around the world seek to overcome the ban on the worship of an established Dharma Protector practice.

    It is amazing how such forms of discrimination still exist in today’s society where the modern democratic government promises religious freedom and freedom of choice. These strong and inspiring women know very clearly that the only way to fight discrimination is to bring awareness to the issue. When more people starting to question the validity of the discrimination, there will be hope for it to be diminished. It is never an easy fight towards such long-standing discrimination, but it is necessary to continue and persist at it because this is how samsara operates.

    It will be wonderful that one day soon that all illogical and unreasonable bans will be lifted so everyone regardless of gender, race, nationality… can enjoy their basic rights to the fullest.

  10. Lum Kok Luen on Jun 5, 2019 at 9:27 am

    Thank you Your Eminence for sharing this wonderful story.
    If one yearns for the Dharma, there is no hardship that is too great for ome to overcome. These two wonderdul nuns have demonstrated their wonderful compassion in wanting to help others especially women to access Dharma equally.
    Equanimity is one of the characteristics that we must develop in our path.
    Very inspiring true stories.
    Thank you Your Eminence.

    Humbly yours
    Lum Kok Luen

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Blog Chat

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  • sarassitham
    Thursday, Feb 25. 2021 01:04 AM
    This is kind of hard to believe and shocking to imagine the weirdest addiction of people in this planet, they are extremely strange. People can become addicted to actions, feelings, or behaviors, not just substances. There must be something behind of every addiction, I don’t think they are crazy or mentally ill, it’s their weird enjoyment for a short time.

    I had a friend in my primary school who eats mud during rainy days, she told me, it smells good and she enjoys doing it during her play time. I found it strange but has she grow up in different environment she forget about her addiction. So, I strongly believe, all behaviors can be changed when the person gains self-awareness and actually wants to change. Thanks for the interesting sharing and recall of my childhood friend.
  • Samfoonheei
    Wednesday, Feb 24. 2021 01:33 PM
    nteresting read of this history of how Dorje Shugden practice came into light . Since Dorje Shugden was introduced into the Sakya tradition, there have been many Sakya throne holders that practiced Dorje Shugden. Out of the 42 supreme throne holders throughout the history of the Sakya tradition, six of the thrones holders are confirmed to have practiced Dorje Shugden. They have built chapels to him, composed prayers and pujas (kangsols) to him and even propagated his practice amongst their disciples. They cannot be wrong and in fact as confirmed by the 39th Sakya Trizin Dragshul Trinley Rinchen Dorje Shugden is an enlightened being. Dorje Shugden kangsol (prayer) to invoke the blessings of Dorje Shugden composed by him is still widely used today. Dorje Shugden must be a powerful Dharma protector that Sakya tradition have been long relying. It has proven that Dorje Shugden is not a minor practice. Interesting read , may more people read this post to understand better.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this post .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/sakya-trizins-dorje-shugden-prayer.html
  • sarassitham
    Tuesday, Feb 23. 2021 11:23 PM
    Thank you for sharing this yummy recipe. It looks very delicious, healthy and nutritious. I can’t wait to try making it has the ingredients are easy to purchase and methods are simple. I wonder what it taste like.

    https://bit.ly/37DAV7y
  • sarassitham
    Monday, Feb 22. 2021 11:55 PM
    There are lots of people have more than one reason for choosing vegetarianism. Many people choose a vegetarian diet out of concern over animal rights or the environment and others may be based on religious beliefs or even for healthier lifestyle.

    Regardless of whether you choose a vegetarian way of life, it’s always a healthy idea to eat a wide variety of foods and try out new foods when you can.

    Thank you for the sharing and compiling the list of vegetarian restaurants and organic shops in Klang Valley. I am glad to know whereabout and hoping to try them.

    https://bit.ly/3siC4tf
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Feb 22. 2021 03:30 PM
    Begtse Chen, a deity of alien origin, was incorporated into the pantheon of Tibetan Buddhism as a protector of the Dharma. This Proyector is one of the eight famous Dharmapala in Tantric Buddhism. Also known as red Mahakala and is especially revered in Mongolia where the origin of Begtse Chen can be traced to a pre-Buddhist deity in 16th century. It has become the mainstay of Protector practice in Mongolia. Interesting read.
    Thank you for this sharing .

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-dharma-protector-begtse-chen.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Feb 22. 2021 03:27 PM
    Interesting read of Kunkhyen Choku Ozer was a lineage master of the Manjushri Namasamgiti Tantra. He became known as Kunkhyen Choku Ozer due to his ability to penetrate the meaning of the great Buddhist treatises merely just by glancing at it. He could memolised texts just by reading it once. Reading this post and information at least I can know he is also a part of Dorje Shugden’s incarnation lineage. He is also famed for establishing the ancient monastery of Dakpo Tsele.
    Thank you Pastor David for this sharing as many of us would not have known this GREAT Lama was part of Dorje Shugden’s incarnation lineage.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/kunkhyen-choku-ozer-master-of-the-kalachakra-guhyasamaja-tantras.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Monday, Feb 22. 2021 03:25 PM
    Thank you Rinpoche for the teachings on Dorje Shugden and explanation on retreat. Learning and practicing this Dorje Shugden’s practice have indeed benefited many people. And more so when to do a retreat. . We are all very fortunate to be given an opportunity to meet Tsem Rinpoche and learning, practicing all these precious teachings coming from a pure lineage that can be traced back to the time of the great Lama Tsongkhapa. A very detailed explanation on why we need the retreat and the way to do the retreat.
    Thanks again Rinpoche with folded hands.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/dorje-shugden-retreat-a-powerful-practice-to-fulfill-wishes.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Feb 21. 2021 01:54 PM
    Tsem Rinpoche had been working tirelessly teaching Dharma in his whole life, giving many opportunities for us to learn , practice Dharma teachings. Whatever goes wrong we should admit it as our own fault and not our guru. Rinpoche ‘s love to spread Dharma teachings and nothing else. He had followed his advice of his guru to come all the way from India to teach in Malaysia. Reading all those meaningful quotes and sayings in this article tells us a thousand words of truth which we should not take it lightly. We could in fact learn from it and stop blaming others.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this profound teachings.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/is-it-the-gurus-fault.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Feb 21. 2021 01:51 PM
    HH the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso , the highest spiritual leader of Tibet, who is a living Bodhisattva, an emanation of Avalokiteśvara. Blessing to have a change looking at this rare picture taken years ago of Dalai lama on the throne . Dalai Lama is well known as a Buddhist Advocate for Peace and Freedom.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/his-holiness-the-supreme-holder-of-the-white-lotus.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Sunday, Feb 21. 2021 01:48 PM
    Tibetans all over the world celebrates Losar, or Tibetan New Year with the beginning of Lunar year. This year it falls on the 12 February, every one will be looking forward to this day. A new year a new beginning , where the Panglung Oracle will take trance of the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden. As usual every year the Panglung Oracle will give advices, offering guidance, for the year ahead to everyone of what to do and so forth. Whatever advices given should not taken lightly. The Panglung Oracle as Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden will also give teachings and blessing . For this year Dorje Shugden gave a very powerful teachings and messages.
    Thank you for sharing this precious message.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/dorje-shugdens-2021-losar-advice.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Feb 20. 2021 02:06 PM
    Interesting read , even though short but at least knowing the home Monastery of H E Tsem Rinpoche’s previous incarnation, Gedun Nyedrak. The monastery was called ‘Tsem’,where a custodian of a tooth relic of the great Lama Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelugpa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.
    Thank you Pastor David for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/gedun-nyedrak-an-abbot-of-gaden.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Feb 20. 2021 01:59 PM
    News of UFO always fascinating to me . There are many UFO sighting hotspots exist across the globe, it has long since scientist have a keen interest to investigate further. UFOs has become a modern sensation for hunters , scientist and so forth. There was only the ambiguous testament of witnesses so far all happen and appeared mysteries without any substantial evidence. But the Japanese government has admitted and believes definitely they the UFO exist. Well the Japanese government has even made a statement about alien spacecraft appearing on Earth. Many people have denied the existence of UFOs, but with so many UFO sightings they cannot denied it after all. Sound interesting.
    The Buddha has once said that we are not the only beings in existence and we are not alone on earth. Interesting videos to watch.
    Thank you Rinpoche for this sharing.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/japanese-admits-ufo-exists.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Saturday, Feb 20. 2021 01:58 PM
    Khuton Choje and Pandita Akaramati were both great disciples of Atisha. Pandita Akaramati was a great Buddhist master, scholar and also the abbot of Solnak Thangpoche Monastery in the Yarlung Valley of central Tibet. He did played a significant role in the fusion of the old Buddhist curriculum existing in Tibet. While Khuton Choje who is well known for the special teachings he requested of Atisha. He is known to have composed a commentary to Atisha’s Satyadvayavatara.
    Thank you Pastor David for this sharing of GREAT Lamas.

    https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/great-lamas-masters/great-disciples-of-atisha-khuton-choje-and-pandita-akaramati.html
  • sarassitham
    Saturday, Feb 20. 2021 12:25 AM
    Thank you for the sharing, fishing is an extremely cruel hobby that causes immense suffering and damage to fish, even when they are released back into the water. However human does not realize what karma befalls but they have great time, fun going fishing.

    I believe children are always eager to learn fast as they grow but parents has to monitor their child’s activity and behavior is especially important when they begin to demand for their choice.

    https://bit.ly/3k6pYAM
  • sarassitham
    Thursday, Feb 18. 2021 11:42 PM
    Thank you for the inspiring posting, of the little Christian and his amazing determination to help children with cancer. This kind hearted boy has to go through a lot of hassle to fulfill his mission. I felt so proud for Christian and also to his great parents to guide the little boy towards the development of kindness and a good attitude from an early age.

    https://bit.ly/2NHE0fJ

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

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The Unknown

The Known and unknown are both feared,
Known is being comfortable and stagnant,
The unknown may be growth and opportunities,
One shall never know if one fears the unknown more than the known.
Who says the unknown would be worse than the known?
But then again, the unknown is sometimes worse than the known. In the end nothing is known unless we endeavour,
So go pursue all the way with the unknown,
because all unknown with familiarity becomes the known.
~Tsem Rinpoche

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According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn\'t this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
1 year ago
According to legend, Shambhala is a place where wisdom and love reign, and there is no crime. Doesn't this sound like the kind of place all of us would love to live in? https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=204874
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden\'s blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
1 year ago
108 candles and sang (incense) offered at our Wish-Fulfilling Grotto, invoking Dorje Shugden's blessings for friends, sponsors and supporters, wonderful!
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
1 year ago
Dharmapalas are not exclusive to Tibetan culture and their practice is widespread throughout the Buddhist world - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=193645
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat\'s doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
1 year ago
One of our adorable Kechara Forest Retreat's doggies, Tara, happy and safe, and enjoying herself in front of Wisdom Hall which has been decorated for Chinese New Year
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
1 year ago
Fragrant organic Thai basil harvested from our very own Kechara Forest Retreat farm!
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
1 year ago
On behalf of our Puja House team, Pastor Tat Ming receives food and drinks from Rinpoche. Rinpoche wanted to make sure the hardworking Puja House team are always taken care of.
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
1 year ago
By the time I heard about Luang Phor Thong, he was already very old, in his late 80s. When I heard about him, I immediately wanted to go and pay my respects to him. - http://bit.ly/LuangPhorThong
It\'s very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it\'s very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
1 year ago
It's very nice to see volunteers helping maintain holy sites in Kechara Forest Retreat, it's very good for them. Cleaning Buddha statues is a very powerful and effective way of purifying body karma.
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
1 year ago
Kechara Forest Retreat is preparing for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations. This is our holy Vajra Yogini stupa which is now surrounded by beautiful lanterns organised by our students.
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
1 year ago
One of the most recent harvests from our Kechara Forest Retreat land. It was grown free of chemicals and pesticides, wonderful!
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
2 yearss ago
Third picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
2 yearss ago
Second picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal.
Height: 33ft (10m)
2 yearss ago
First picture-Standing Manjushri Statue at Chowar, Kirtipur, Nepal. Height: 33ft (10m)
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
2 yearss ago
The first title published by Kechara Comics is Karuna Finds A Way. It tells the tale of high-school sweethearts Karuna and Adam who had what some would call the dream life. Everything was going great for them until one day when reality came knocking on their door. Caught in a surprise swindle, this loving family who never harmed anyone found themselves out of luck and down on their fortune. Determined to save her family, Karuna goes all out to find a solution. See what she does- https://bit.ly/2LSKuWo
Very powerful story! Tibetan Resistance group Chushi Gangdruk reveals how Dalai Lama escaped in 1959- https://bit.ly/2S9VMGX
2 yearss ago
Very powerful story! Tibetan Resistance group Chushi Gangdruk reveals how Dalai Lama escaped in 1959- https://bit.ly/2S9VMGX
At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
2 yearss ago
At Kechara Forest Retreat land we have nice fresh spinach growing free of chemicals and pesticides. Yes!
See beautiful pictures of Manjushri Guest House here- https://bit.ly/2WGo0ti
2 yearss ago
See beautiful pictures of Manjushri Guest House here- https://bit.ly/2WGo0ti
Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
2 yearss ago
Beginner’s Introduction to Dorje Shugden~Very good overview https://bit.ly/2QQNfYv
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat\'s land here in Malaysia
2 yearss ago
Fresh eggplants grown on Kechara Forest Retreat's land here in Malaysia
Most Venerable Uppalavanna – The Chief Female Disciple of Buddha Shakyamuni - She exhibited many supernatural abilities gained from meditation and proved to the world females and males are equal in spirituality- https://bit.ly/31d9Rat
2 yearss ago
Most Venerable Uppalavanna – The Chief Female Disciple of Buddha Shakyamuni - She exhibited many supernatural abilities gained from meditation and proved to the world females and males are equal in spirituality- https://bit.ly/31d9Rat
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2 yearss ago
Thailand’s ‘Renegade’ Yet Powerful Buddhist Nuns~ https://bit.ly/2Z1C02m
Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
2 yearss ago
Mahapajapati Gotami – the first Buddhist nun ordained by Lord Buddha- https://bit.ly/2IjD8ru
The Largest Buddha Shakyamuni in Russia | 俄罗斯最大的释迦牟尼佛画像- https://bit.ly/2Wpclni
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The Largest Buddha Shakyamuni in Russia | 俄罗斯最大的释迦牟尼佛画像- https://bit.ly/2Wpclni
Sacred Vajra Yogini
2 yearss ago
Sacred Vajra Yogini
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
2 yearss ago
Dorje Shugden works & archives - a labour of commitment - https://bit.ly/30Tp2p8
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
2 yearss ago
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha.
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha\'s mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
2 yearss ago
Mahapajapati Gotami, who was the first nun ordained by Lord Buddha. She was his step-mother and aunt. Buddha's mother had passed away at his birth so he was raised by Gotami.
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha\'s. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
2 yearss ago
Another nun disciple of Lord Buddha's. She had achieved great spiritual abilities and high attainments. She would be a proper object of refuge. This image of the eminent bhikkhuni (nun) disciple of the Buddha, Uppalavanna Theri.
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
2 yearss ago
Wandering Ascetic Painting by Nirdesha Munasinghe
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
2 yearss ago
High Sri Lankan monks visit Kechara to bless our land, temple, Buddha and Dorje Shugden images. They were very kind-see pictures- https://bit.ly/2HQie2M
This is pretty amazing!

First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
2 yearss ago
This is pretty amazing! First Sri Lankan Buddhist temple opened in Dubai!!!
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche

Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
2 yearss ago
My Dharma boy (left) and Oser girl loves to laze around on the veranda in the mornings. They enjoy all the trees, grass and relaxing under the hot sun. Sunbathing is a favorite daily activity. I care about these two doggies of mine very much and I enjoy seeing them happy. They are with me always. Tsem Rinpoche Always be kind to animals and eat vegetarian- https://bit.ly/2Psp8h2
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can\'t stop thinking of you and I can\'t forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
2 yearss ago
After you left me Mumu, I was alone. I have no family or kin. You were my family. I can't stop thinking of you and I can't forget you. My bond and connection with you is so strong. I wish you were by my side. Tsem Rinpoche
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
2 yearss ago
This story is a life-changer. Learn about the incredible Forest Man of India | 印度“森林之子”- https://bit.ly/2Eh4vRS
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
2 yearss ago
Part 2-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
2 yearss ago
Part 1-Beautiful billboard in Malaysia of a powerful Tibetan hero whose life serves as a great inspiration- https://bit.ly/2UltNE4
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
2 yearss ago
The great Protector Manjushri Dorje Shugden depicted in the beautiful Mongolian style. To download a high resolution file: https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
2 yearss ago
The Mystical land of Shambhala is finally ready for everyone to feast their eyes and be blessed. A beautiful post with information, art work, history, spirituality and a beautiful book composed by His Holiness the 6th Panchen Rinpoche. ~ https://bit.ly/309MHBi
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
2 yearss ago
Beautiful pictures of the huge Buddha in Longkou Nanshan- https://bit.ly/2LsBxVb
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
2 yearss ago
The reason-Very interesting thought- https://bit.ly/2V7VT5r
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
2 yearss ago
NEW Bigfoot cafe in Malaysia! Food is delicious!- https://bit.ly/2VxdGau
DON\'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
2 yearss ago
DON'T MISS THIS!~How brave Bonnie survived by living with a herd of deer~ https://bit.ly/2Lre2eY
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
2 yearss ago
Global Superpower China Will Cut Meat Consumption by 50%! Very interesting, find out more- https://bit.ly/2V1sJFh
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
2 yearss ago
You can download this beautiful Egyptian style Dorje Shugden Free- https://bit.ly/2Nt3FHz
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
2 yearss ago
Beautiful high file for print of Lord Manjushri. May you be blessed- https://bit.ly/2V8mwZe
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
2 yearss ago
Mongolian (Oymiakon) Shaman in Siberia, Russia. That is his real outfit he wears. Very unique. TR
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
2 yearss ago
Find one of the most beautiful temples in the world in Nara, Japan. It is the 1,267 year old Todai-ji temple that houses a 15 meter Buddha Vairocana statue who is a cosmic and timeless Buddha. Emperor Shomu who sponsored this beautiful temple eventually abdicated and ordained as a Buddhist monk. Very interesting history and story. One of the places everyone should visit- https://bit.ly/2VgsHhK
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
2 yearss ago
Manjusri Kumara (bodhisattva of wisdom), India, Pala dynesty, 9th century, stone, Honolulu Academy of Arts
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ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

A section for you to clarify your Dharma questions with Kechara’s esteemed pastors.

Just post your name and your question below and one of our pastors will provide you with an answer.

Scroll down and click on "View All Questions" to view archived questions.

  • February 27, 2021 03:31
    Sandra asked: Respected pastors, Is it ok to pray from different areas in the house (even where there is no altar)? I was told you can't create 2 altars in 1 house.
    No reply yet
  • February 25, 2021 01:33
    Kuenzang wangdi asked: What would be my most suitable colour ?
    No reply yet
  • February 22, 2021 22:14
    Naseer asked: Hi My name is Naseer Ahmed 8th dec 1979. Life path 1 Im looking to add to my name slightly... change it too... Naseer Al Ahmed... Would this be more complimentary as far as for the business front... or would it not make any difference
    pastor answered: Hello Naseer, As per your question, your Life Path Number is 1. The Life Path Number according to the system of numerology used on our website is calculated using your date of birth. Therefore, a change in name will not affect your Life Path Number. Some of the other calculators on the same page do however use your name. One of the smaller calculators you may be interested in is the Achievement Number, but again, this only uses your date of birth for the calculation. You can find it here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/numerology/numerology-calculator.html You may also be interested in two of our other pages: Chinese Zodiac - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/horoscopes/the-chinese-zodiac.html Tibetan Astrology - https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/tibetan-astrology/tibetan-astrology.html Thank you for your question. I hope this helps.
  • February 20, 2021 18:36
    Sandra asked: After making a food offering to the three jewels (which we will eat for lunch etc), should we think of it as a blessing and partake?
    pastor answered: Hello Sandra, When making food offerings to the Three Jewels, which you eat yourself, when you recite the prayer and make the offering, you should visualise that the Buddhas receive your food offering and because you have made an offering, they are very pleased. It also fulfills one of the Refuge commitments, which is to offer the first portion of whatever we eat and drink to the Three Jewels, while remembering their kindness. You can then partake of the meal and consider it a blessing from the Three Jewels. Alternatively, you can set out a plate (which you reserve for this purpose) of food, which you can offer on your altar. Similarly, once the food has been left on your altar for a while, you can later remove it and consume it as a blessing. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • February 19, 2021 04:33
    Sandra asked: Is intovertedness a bad quality? Since Buddha is so altruistic and this is the opposite trait, it must be bad. How do you think one should lessen introverted tendencies?
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Introvertedness is not a bad quality. Altruism and compassion are different from being an introvert or extrovert. Introverts are generally quieter people, less expressive of their emotions, while extroverts are the opposite. Buddhist practice is not about expression of emotion. Rather the altruistic and compassionate teachings are more about how you help other people and sentient beings, physically or emotionally. If the qualities of introverted-ness are stopping you from developing these, then they need to change. But this may not be necessary, depending on the qualities that you are talking about. You can do simple meditations to building up the energy of compassion in your mindstream and you will see that you actions will automatically start to be more compassionate and altruistic. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • February 18, 2021 03:28
    Sandra asked: How should one behave when negative karma is being purified? How can we know if bad karma is being purified? Do we accumulate positive karma simultaneously when doing purification practices? Many thanks for your response.
    pastor answered: Hello again Sandra, There are two ways in which karma can be purified, the first is through our own efforts alone and the second is through our own effort, combined with a purification practice. Through our own efforts: this means that you transform your mind enough to not react negatively in any situation and only react in a positive manner. For example, you may have the karma to get angry. So you get into situations which makes you angry. If you react normally, then you will get angry again, this will only lead you to create more karma of being angry. But if you make the effort not to get angry in those situations then you do not create or multiply that karma. The original karma you have may lead you to be in those types of situations again, but if you do not get angry then after a while you start to purify that karma. Through your own efforts, combined with a purification practice: as you are working on transforming your mind, you can rely on the practices that help you to purify your karma, such as the practice of Vajrasattva or the 35 Confessional Buddhas. This boosts your ability to purify negative karma, based on the enlightened energies of the Buddhas. This however is only truly effective when combined with the Four Opponent Powers. You can read more about that here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/the-35-confessional-buddhas.html In general, when karma is being purified then you should remain level-headed and not act out of emotion or habit, but from your understanding of the workings of karma and the Dharma. But actually, this should not only be when karma is being purified. You should act and behave in this way all the time according to the Dharma, then you are, up to a point, always purifying karma. It is one of the reasons that so much emphasis is placed on refraining from negative actions and engaging in positive actions using your body, speech and mind, because these are the three means or 'doors' with which you interact with the world. At our level, we cannot tell if karma is being purified or not, only those who are more highly attained can tell. However, that is one of the reasons the Buddhist texts advise study of and belief in karma. If there is karma, then it can be purified, and the way to do so is transform your mind and invoke upon the enlightened beings. So if you are doing both, you can rest assured that you are in fact purifying your karma. When you purify negative karma, whether just through your own efforts or combined with a purification practice you collect merit, not positive karma. If you simply do a good action, you collect good karma. But if you are practicing the Dharma with the intention of achieving enlightenment, you take refuge, engage in the practice, and dedicate at the end, then you develop merit, not positive karma. If you want to read more about how karma works and how to purify it in more detail, I suggest you read a Lamrim text such as Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand, which you can order from your local bookstore or get online here (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/lamrim-liberation-in-the-palm-of-your-hand).
  • February 17, 2021 23:06
    Sandra asked: Hello pastors, thank you for your response to my earlier question. Do divination predictions change frequently? Why does that happen?
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Thank you for your question. Divinations, compared to astrological predictions, are much more accurate. There are many types of divination, but those based on the practice of enlightened beings are very accurate. Three of the most well-known in Tibetan Buddhism are the divination practices of Manjushri, Palden Lhamo and Dorje Shugden. You can read more about Dorje Shugden's dice divination here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/dorje-shugdens-dice-divination.html Questions that are asked during divinations are much more specific than the types of topics that astrological predictions can help with, therefore are based on very specific types of karma. This means that if you asked a divination question twice, without taking remedial actions in between, then the answer would most likely be the same, given that all the prerequisites have been held by the diviner and the divinations are genuine. However, if a divination is done and then remedial actions recommended, such as various practices or pujas, and these are done to the letter, then if the question is asked again, then the results would differ. This is because when engaging in these practices or pujas, either you generate the merit necessary to overpower the negative effects of the karma, or you purify the negative effects of the karma creating the situation. This however, is generally not done. You wouldn't ask the same question twice or over and over again. The reason for this is because one of the factors that comes into play when seeking divination is faith. This is faith in the fact that the remedial actions recommended will help whatever situation you are facing. Having seen H.E. Tsem Rinpoche do countless divinations for people, I can attest to this. Those who have faith and follow through with the advice, see a great improvement in the situation that led them to ask the divination question in the first place. Those that did not follow the advice either at all or not fully, did not see any improvement. And this makes sense, because they did not purify the effects of the karma enough, or generate enough merit. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • February 15, 2021 04:09
    sandra asked: How much importance should we give to astrological predictions or chart readings? Are these readings susceptible to change all the time,i.e, in the context of planetary movements? Can our own effort/actions supercede what is predicted in our birth chart?
    pastor answered: Dear Sandra, Thank you for your interesting question. You are absolutely correct about the universal principle of change. According to Buddhist practice, astrological predictions are based upon a fixed point in time. Take for example, your moment of birth, which most astrological readings take as the main point of reference. At that specific moment, there would have been various energies or planetary alignments, etc. Combined together, they are said to give an accurate prediction of what will occur to a person throughout their life. This however, is based on one's birth karma, to be born at that specific point in time and location. This birth karma also provides the driving force behind what will occur in a person's life, if that karma is not changed somehow. Hence, that is why astrological predictions can give very accurate readings on someone's personality, as well as life events. Birth karma provides the main force behind all other karma to come into play. That is why it is given importance in astrology. There are also more advanced methods to take into account planetary and energetical movements to give even more detailed and precise predictions that can even be made down to the month, day or hour of a person's life. In Buddhism, however, we believe that karma can be changed. It can multiply, be purified or exhausted, or the effects of that karma can be overpowered by another karma or spiritual merit. In these cases, the outcome will change. The way in which this happens is varied. It can be as simple as doing some prayers (to generate spiritual merit) or changing your behaviour, environment or location, the way you think, and the ways in which you react in various situations. That is why in Buddhist astrological systems, emphasis is placed on remedial measures to counteract negative outcomes. For example, someone may be born with an angry disposition from an astrological point of view. If this person goes through life acting from this anger, then the predictions based on the time of birth will occur. However, a remedial action can be undertaken, such as the person pracitising Chenrezig, who is the Buddha of compassion, or the person doing some form of charity work. These remedial actions generate compassion in the mind of the person, which counteracts the anger. As this happens and the karma is changed, then the person no longer needs to feels the negative effects of any bad astrological (or more correctly - karmic) situations. There are even some practices that specifically help to counteract negative astrological influences and help you to change things. Such an example is Black Manjushri. Within Tibetan Buddhism, according to your time and date of birth, you also have what is known as a 'Birth Buddha'. This is basically an enlightened being that you have an affinity with in this life. General remedial actions include making images of this particular Buddha or engaging in this Buddha's practice. This combined with a change in how we live - otherwise known as Mind Transformation in the Buddhist context - changes astrological outcomes. However, if we continue living without controlling our actions, words and thoughts, the predictions made using astrological readings will most likely still occur. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
  • February 7, 2021 00:16
    Purna Tamang asked: What is my lucky number and color ?
    pastor answered: Dear Purna Tamang, Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, none our horoscope apps on this page gives this information at this moment. However, you may find some of the other information provided useful. Below are the links: For Chinese Zodiac: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/horoscopes/the-chinese-zodiac.html For Tibetan astrology: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/tibetan-astrology/tibetan-astrology.html For Numerology: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/numerology/numerology-calculator.html For Fortune cookies: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/fortune-cookie Thank you and I hope you find something interesting in one of the apps.
  • January 20, 2021 03:32
    Sangita. asked: i want to buy my own house.which mantra i should chant to have my own house.kindly reply.
    pastor answered: Dear Sangita, Thank you for your question. Everything in our lives, whether good or bad is due to our karma. This is karma we have accumulated either in previous lives or earlier on in this life. You can learn more about this here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/discovering-yourself-a-teaching-on-karma-mindstream.html Sometimes, we go through obstacles or need some form of spiritual help to assist us in improving our situations. In these circumstances we can rely on the practice of certain deities. One of these deities is the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden. You can read more about this deity and his practice here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/beginners-introduction-to-dorje-shugden.html You can learn more about Dorje Shugden's practice here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/dorje-shugden-teaching-videos.html. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • January 12, 2021 00:32
    Laurence Brahm asked: Hello la. I would like to get in touch with Rinpoche. My name is Laurence Brahm and I've directed the two films including Searching for The Lotus Born Master. I would like to get in touch with Rinpoche in hopes he would kindly agree to an interview with our third production on Guru Rinpoche and also I would like to ask some questions concerning Shambala. I would be most grateful if Rinpoche would email me at himalayanconsensus2@gmail.com Thank you. With respects
    pastor answered: Dear Laurence Brahm, Thank you for your questions. This section is actually answered by Kechara's Pastors who were trained by His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche. Unfortunately, Tsem Rinpoche is no longer with us physically. He passed into Parinirvana in 2019. You can read more about this here: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/me/the-parinirvana-of-kyabje-tsem-rinpoche.html If you would like to ask questions to any of the pastors regarding this, please email care@kechara.com with more information and mention that you would like to talk to one of the pastors. Thank you
  • December 31, 2020 14:46
    Jose Ajuria asked: What are the qualities of the Buddha Dharma and Sangha
    pastor answered: Dear Jose Ajuria, Here is a short article that discusses the qualities of the Three Jewels: https://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/taking-refuge-by-pabongka-rinpoche.html For a more in-depth text regarding this, please read Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand (https://www.vajrasecrets.com/lamrim-liberation-in-the-palm-of-your-hand). The text describes the qualities and benefits of taking refuge in each, in much more detail. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • December 30, 2020 09:55
    Dan asked: Dear pastors, some vegetarians said egg can eat. While some say no. What is your opinion on this. Thank you
    pastor answered: Dear Dan, Thank you for your question. There are differing views on eggs as part of the vegetarian diet. Some people would say that since eggs we get these days are not fertilized, then they are vegetarian since there is no life involved at that point. His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche was vegetarian but consumed eggs, as long as they were free-range and organic, because Rinpoche was against the battery farming system which produces the majority of eggs these days. There is a lot of animal cruelty involved with battery farming. Most people who do not include egg in their vegetarian diets do this because of the harm is causes the hens during the farming process, and also because they can view eating eggs as taking a life. That being said, within Buddhism, there are certain practices that strictly prohibit the consumption of eggs, as with other types of food. This can be for a number of reasons, which are too long to be discussed here. I would say that most people in the Kechara organisation eat eggs although vegetarian, but that may also be a cultural thing. Some people however, have taken the extra step and live a vegan lifestyle, which definitely does not include egg, as an extension of their practice of compassion for other sentient beings. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
  • December 5, 2020 00:25
    Bradley asked: Would offerings or prayers like Sangsol offering be more potent if we had the prayers translated to the language of a given geographical area? Example in England where Celtic was once spoken? Would the local deities or spirits be pleased we took the time to do so? They are far older than us.
    pastor answered: Dear Bradley, Thank you for your interesting question. Actually the sangsol prayers will be effective when done in any language. There are two main reasons for this. The first is that when you recite the sangsol prayer, you are actually invoking upon an enlightened being first, in this case, it is Dorje Shugden. Therefore, when you make the requests of the local deities to accept the offering, be calm and improve local circumstances etc, it is not coming from you. You are actually beseeching Dorje Shugden to help you in this matter. Hence, it is Dorje Shugden who is communicating with the local deities, not us. Secondly, deities and gods, as they do not have physical bodies, do not require ordinary language. Language as we know it is actually linked to our physical bodies. Local deities and gods, etc, because they don't have the same type of physical form as us, actually recognise our prayers through intention and effort rather than language. Therefore, prayers such as the sangsol prayers are effective no matter which language they are physical recited in. I hope this makes sense, if it does not, please let us know and we will clarify further. Thank you.
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CHAT PICTURES

Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class - KSDS Jayce Goh
4 weeks ago
Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class - KSDS Jayce Goh
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class, students attend Pastor Shin Class happily - KSDS Jayce Goh
4 weeks ago
Re: Kechara Sunday Dharma School Online Teaching Every Sunday Morning 11am class, students attend Pastor Shin Class happily - KSDS Jayce Goh
Update on Empowerment cookies, special holiday packaging. The bakers are most grateful for the overwhelming support of 834 tubs ordered, with a big order of 314 tubs from a group of friends. Thank you to those cookie lovers who couldn’t get enough of it. Watch out for the next update. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
Update on Empowerment cookies, special holiday packaging. The bakers are most grateful for the overwhelming support of 834 tubs ordered, with a big order of 314 tubs from a group of friends. Thank you to those cookie lovers who couldn’t get enough of it. Watch out for the next update. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thank you, generous and kind donors, made possible by Alice Smith School's Official Site through their Build Kindness Campaign. The whooping amount of RM63,000 will provide much needed food to 25 poor families for the next 12 months. On behalf of these families, thank you! Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
Thank you, generous and kind donors, made possible by Alice Smith School's Official Site through their Build Kindness Campaign. The whooping amount of RM63,000 will provide much needed food to 25 poor families for the next 12 months. On behalf of these families, thank you! Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
The global pandemic hasn't been easy for all of us. Some find it diffucult to find a job to support the family. Despite that, we are still delivering basic food pack to our recipients nationwide. Thank you to our volunteers, donors, and sponsors. Without your support, we would be unable to reach out to many families. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
2 months ago
The global pandemic hasn't been easy for all of us. Some find it diffucult to find a job to support the family. Despite that, we are still delivering basic food pack to our recipients nationwide. Thank you to our volunteers, donors, and sponsors. Without your support, we would be unable to reach out to many families. Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thanks to Yap Optometry for gifting Robert a new pair of glasses to see better. We wish him many clear and bright days ahead. Thank you to all sponsors. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 months ago
Thanks to Yap Optometry for gifting Robert a new pair of glasses to see better. We wish him many clear and bright days ahead. Thank you to all sponsors. - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Donation received to date: RM33,468.00 Yes! We've achieved the target for the #TamanNegara project. Fundraising is closed for this project. Thank you to all donors, 113 Orang Asli families will benefit from it. Stay tuned! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 months ago
Donation received to date: RM33,468.00 Yes! We've achieved the target for the #TamanNegara project. Fundraising is closed for this project. Thank you to all donors, 113 Orang Asli families will benefit from it. Stay tuned! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
3 months ago
FRESHLY BAKED by Kechara Empowerment trainees - Chocolate Chip Butter Cookies - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
3 months ago
In memory of Wilson Lee, one of our most dedicated volunteers in Penang. Our heartfelt condolences to Wilson's wife, Tze Ling, family and friends. Our thoughts are with them for their loss. Thank you for your kindness and service to KSK Penang. From all of us in KSK.
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
4 months ago
Last weekend a Soup Kitchen activities @ Penang, Johor & Kuala Lumpur. Hot food, water, masks, biscuits, buns & fruits. This is what we give out to our friends living on the streets. Thank you to our sponsor & volunteers that make it happen. Come spread more love by being a volunteer at our activities. WhatsApp us today at 010-333-3260! See you soon! #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Fwd: Dear Sotha
5 months ago
Fwd: Dear Sotha
Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
5 months ago
Kechara Earth Project 13/9/2020
Thank you Domino's Pizza Malaysia, Kasih & Piza campaign for sponsoring 85 boxes of pizza to our friends who live on the streets. Your flavourful pizzas have put a smile on their faces. Thank you! - Vivan @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #KasihdanPiza #ItsAllAboutYou
6 months ago
Thank you Domino's Pizza Malaysia, Kasih & Piza campaign for sponsoring 85 boxes of pizza to our friends who live on the streets. Your flavourful pizzas have put a smile on their faces. Thank you! - Vivan @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #KasihdanPiza #ItsAllAboutYou
Thank you Novo Nordisk! Your kind monetary donation and 1,320 boxes of masks will benefit many needy families under the Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families  ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #novonordisk #novonordiskmalaysia
6 months ago
Thank you Novo Nordisk! Your kind monetary donation and 1,320 boxes of masks will benefit many needy families under the Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #novonordisk #novonordiskmalaysia
We were graced with the presence of Tengku Zatashah & The Alice Smith School Foundation yesterday. 130 homeless were blessed to be served by them. RM 20,000 donated by Alice Smith School Foundation will benefit 100 families registered under Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #alicesmithschoolfoundation #alicesmithschool #volunteerism #homeless
6 months ago
We were graced with the presence of Tengku Zatashah & The Alice Smith School Foundation yesterday. 130 homeless were blessed to be served by them. RM 20,000 donated by Alice Smith School Foundation will benefit 100 families registered under Kechara Food Bank Program. Thank you! Much love from the needy families ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen #kecharafoodbank #kecharaempowerment #kecharasoupkitchen #alicesmithschoolfoundation #alicesmithschool #volunteerism #homeless
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
8 months ago
Thanks to the effort of our outstation team, we were able to mobilise food provisions to 600 families living in Kelantan, Penang, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor during the Raya period with each of these families receiving RM200 worth of provisions. Adding onto the current 368 families in Klang Valley, a total of 968 families were benefitted from this. Special thanks to the sponsors who have contributed especially Hong Leong Foundation and partially from Tesco Malaysia (where we also ordered the provisions from). ~ Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
8 months ago
So glad that our soup kitchen operations are back in full swing. Good to see the clients are observing the SOPs. Some of them lost their job during MCO and ended up on the streets. Special thanks to our sponsors and volunteers for the great support! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
9 months ago
From serving cooked food to the homeless clients on the streets to mobilising provisions to the needy individuals in PPRs and shelters, we thank everyone of our Johor Bahru team for their kind contributions and effort to make it for the needy despite all the challenges! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
9 months ago
More photos taken from our "Hari Raya Hampers" distribution this week. Making sure everyone of our clients have something to be cheerful about. Apart from food, daily used items such as hygiene products, kitchen utensils, assorted fabric items, stationary items and toys were also included into our hamper bags making it extra heavier this month! Food items alone were about 35kg per family! Taking this opportunity to wish everyone of our Muslim volunteers, friends, supporters and clients a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Maaf Zahir Batin. No doubt this year's celebration will be very different but appreciate everyone is safe and protected from the pandemic. We are in this together and let's work to fight this pandemic together! Thanking all sponsors and donors for the generous support enabling us to continue serve the needy with food, love and care. Big shoutout too to our wonderful team which already depleted by our very own strict SOP. All of you who worked tirelessly behind the s
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
9 months ago
Our team have been working extra hours for the past few weeks to deliver provisions and hamper goodies to the needy families before Hari Raya! Heart warming to see the smiling faces of our recipients upon receiving 3 bags full of food and daily used items. Thanks to everyone of you who have contributed to our foodbank enabling us to give all our recipients (especially those celebrating) a Raya to remember! - Vivian @ Kechara Soup Kitchen
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
9 months ago
Thankful to all donors and those who have been committed in contributing not just money but time over the past testing weeks to help us ease the work of our frontliners and also the livelihood of the needy, their struggles over this pandemic period seemed a little easier to bear with because of your contributions! - Vivian @Kechara Soup Kitchen
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
9 months ago
KSDS Level 2 virtual class, Lin Mun KSDS
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
9 months ago
KSDS Level 3 virtual class. Lin Mun KSDS
Wesak 2020
10 months ago
Wesak 2020
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
11 months ago
Recycle today for a better tomorrow. KEP-Serena
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
11 months ago
Today we are having recycling at Kechara Soup Kitchen. Do drop by here if you would like to get ride of the recyclable items from home. KEP - Serena
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Seen here is Bam, Vajrayogini’s seed syllable and also Kechara's logo. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: More melted butter was offered. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
H.E. Zawa Rinpoche in deep concentration. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Geshela is seen here wearing ceremonial hat called tsoksha. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
The Shize Fire Puja was performed according to scriptural sources. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
To find out more about the substances offered during jinsek/fire puja, have a read here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
More about the symbolism of the offering items here: http://bit.ly/WhatIsFirePuja - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
12 months ago
Amongst all pujas, the fire puja is considered the king of all Pujas. It is the most powerful of all pujas within Tibetan Buddhism and its purpose is basically to remove all obstacles and its stains to enlightenment.
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Graceful hand mudras were also part of the ritual. - shared Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: One by one the offering substances were offered accompanied by traditional Tibetan recitations. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: JP Thong ensuring that Geshela's ritual items are within easy reach. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor David Lai & Frederick Law were also on hand to assist with the puja ritual substances. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Pastor Niral Patel assisting H.E. Zawa Rinpoche during the puja. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
12 months ago
Highlights from the Shize Peaceful Fire Puja: Peaceful fire pujas are excellent to remove inauspiciousness, problems that might be coming to our lifespan, wisdom, wealth, growth of Dharma. - shared by Pastor Antoinette
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Dorje Shugden
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