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Dharma Teachers
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U Vivekananda

Ven. Ariya Nani

Ven. Dhammananda
Venerable Dhammananda Bhikkhuni is Thailand’s first fully ordained Theravada Buddhist nun and abbess. She is the spiritual leader of Songdhammakalyani Temple located about an hour southwest of Bangkok. Ven. Dhammananda offers a unique perspective as both an ordained Theravada Bhikkhuni and a feminist, and has been internationally recognized for her work on women in Buddhism and environmental conservation. Prior to her ordination, she was an Associate Professor of Buddhist Studies at Thammasat University for 27 years. She is a tireless crusader for women’s ordination and has traveled the world speaking to audiences about the need to restore the “fourth pillar” of Buddhism.

Ven. Metteyya Sakyaputta
Venerable Metteyya Sakyaputta was born in the same place as the Buddha: Lumbini, Nepal. Though he has primarily studied under the Theravada tradition, Metteyya has also received teachings directly from the well known Tibetan Buddhist master of Sakya tradition His Eminence Chogye Trichen Rimpoche. He has also studied with the Vietnamese Pure Land tradition and has thorough comparative, theoretical and practical understanding of the various Buddhist traditions. He says that knowledge of many traditions of Buddhism has helped him to pinpoint the core and most essential Buddhist teachings.

Ven. Pannavati-Karuna
Ven. Dr. Pannavati is Co-Abbot of Embracing Simplicity Hermitage. An African-American Buddhist monk ordained in the Theravada and Mahayana traditions and with transmission from Roshi Bernie Glassman of Zen Peacemakers, she is both contemplative and empowered for compassionate service. More than 70 homeless youth between the ages of 17 and 21 have resided at the hermitage over the past 2 ½ years and that effort has evolved into a separate 501(c)(3), MyPlace, Inc. which has its own accredited high school, jobs training program, youth center and residential program. An international teacher, she advocates on behalf of disempowered women and youth globally; and insists on equality and respect in Buddhist life for both female monastics and lay sangha. She was a 2008 recipient of the Outstanding Buddhist Women’s Award. In 2009, she received a special commendation from the Princess of Thailand for Humanitarian Acts and ordained the first Thai Bhikkhunis, on Thai soil with Thai monks as witnesses. In May 2010 she convened a platform of Bhikkhunis to ordain 10 Cambodian Samaneris, performing the ceremony in a Cambodian temple, witnessed by Cambodian abbots and sanctioned by Maha Thera Ven. Dhammathero Sao Khon, President of the Community of Khmer Buddhist Monks of the US. Finally, Venerable is a founding circle director of Women of Compassionate Wisdom, a 21st century trans-lineage Buddhist Order and Sisterhood. She recently ordained their first American oblate.

Ven. Sayalay Susila
Sayalay Susila has been a Theravada nun for the last 20 years. Sister started her vipassana insight meditation during her university days, while obtaining a degree in Mass Communications (1988) at USM in Malaysia. Before ordination, she practiced as a full-time practitioner for one and a half years. After her ordination, in 1991, she practiced under the guidance of the well-known Venerable Sayadaw U Pandita in Panditarama Monastery, Myanmar, until 1994, at which time she began to practice under the guidance of the Venerable Pa Auk Tawya Sayadaw at the Pa Auk Meditation Centre, Myanmar, where she remains today.

Abhayagiri Monastery

Adam Baraz
Adam is the son of James Baraz, a co-founder of Spirit Rock Meditation Center. Adam graduated from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado, in Spring of 2011. He has done extensive retreat practice, including the 3-month retreat at IMS, a one month retreat at Spirit Rock, two month-long retreats in the Tibetan tradition, and numerous shorter retreats.

Adrianne Ross
Adrianne Ross, MD, has been involved with meditation and healing since 1978 and has offered retreats in Canada and the US since 1995. She also teaches MBSR to people with chronic pain and illness.

Ajahn Brahm

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