Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Discussion of ordination, the Vinaya and monastic life. How and where to ordain? Bhikkhuni ordination etc.

Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby cooran » Sun Oct 25, 2009 7:49 pm

Hello all,

I found this surprise on the Buddhist Society of Western Australia website.

BSWA News : Bhikkhuni Ordination Talk Now Live
Apologies for the technical glitch earlier today, the audio recording announcing the full ordination of our Bhikkhunis is now active.
Please partake in the joyous occasion of the re-establishment of the original lineage of nuns (Bhikkhunis) -established by the Bhudda 2000+ years ago - right here in Western Australia by Ajahn Brahm.
http://www.bswa.org/modules/news/

metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---
User avatar
cooran
 
Posts: 7799
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Location: Queensland, Australia

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby Sanghamitta » Sun Oct 25, 2009 8:11 pm

Its always fresh and new no matter how many times one is privileged to watch it.


:anjali:
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.
Sanghamitta
 
Posts: 1614
Joined: Wed Jul 29, 2009 9:21 am
Location: By the River Thames near London.

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Oct 25, 2009 8:17 pm

Chris wrote:Please partake in the joyous occasion of the re-establishment of the original lineage of nuns (Bhikkhunis) -established by the Bhudda 2000+ years ago - right here in Western Australia by Ajahn Brahm.
http://www.bswa.org/modules/news/


1996 - Several novice nuns receive full ordination in Sarnath, India
2000 - 2009 Several novice nuns receive full ordination in the U.S. and Sri Lanka

I assume this is the first set of full ordinations in Australia?

:woohoo:

:twothumbsup:
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8288
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby cooran » Sun Oct 25, 2009 8:22 pm

I'm not sure about the composition of the group ordaining the Bhikkhunis in the previous attempts. Does anyone know?
Were they all Theravada sangha? What about this time? Too long for me to download the video.

metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---
User avatar
cooran
 
Posts: 7799
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Location: Queensland, Australia

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Oct 25, 2009 8:28 pm

Chris wrote:I'm not sure about the composition of the group ordaining the Bhikkhunis in the previous attempts. Does anyone know?


In the previous full ordinations in the U.S. they used Theravada bhikkhus and Mahayana nuns for the double-ordination. I think the Mahyana nuns had the Dharmagupta lineage which goes back as far as the Theravada to the Vibhajjavada - Third Council time period.
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8288
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby gavesako » Sun Oct 25, 2009 8:48 pm

This is information gleaned from the internet:

"About 100 lay people were there who had
all been asked beforehand to keep it a very low key event but that the the dual
ordination itself was a "magical event" with Ayya Thathaloka as the
preceptor.
The nuns came over from Dhammasara to Bodhinyana around
5pm. the ceremony started at 7.15pm. There were about 100 lay supporters
…. The bhikkhuni sangha who graced the occasion came from the
U.S.(3), Indonesia (2), Vietnam (1) and
Melbourne(2). Ayya Tathaaloka was the preceptor. I also met
and spoke to the 2 Indonesian bhikkhunis, Ayya
Santini and Silawati. Ayya Santini who is the senior of the two is lovely too …
The dual ordination was truly magical. You could feel
the energy of support and encouragement from not just the bhikkuni and
bhikkhu sangha but also the laity. Members of the laity were so eager to
bow to the newly ordained bhikkhunis as soon as they were prounounced duly
ordained. There were hearty choruses of Sadhus! It was way past 10pm when
we started to leave.”
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
User avatar
gavesako
 
Posts: 1416
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: England

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby BlackBird » Sun Oct 25, 2009 9:03 pm

TheDhamma wrote:
Chris wrote:I'm not sure about the composition of the group ordaining the Bhikkhunis in the previous attempts. Does anyone know?


In the previous full ordinations in the U.S. they used Theravada bhikkhus and Mahayana nuns for the double-ordination. I think the Mahyana nuns had the Dharmagupta lineage which goes back as far as the Theravada to the Vibhajjavada - Third Council time period.


I recently read Ayya Khema's autobiography, it mentions she was ordained as a nun under Ven. Narada Maha Thera in 1979, but she only mentions that she recieved her full Bhikkhuni ordination in California "much later."

I don't know what date this would be, but certainly before 1990 I would assume.

Full-steam ahead for the reinstation of the Bhikkhuni Lineage :thumbsup:
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
User avatar
BlackBird
 
Posts: 1861
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:07 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Oct 25, 2009 9:39 pm

BlackBird wrote:I recently read Ayya Khema's autobiography, it mentions she was ordained as a nun under Ven. Narada Maha Thera in 1979, but she only mentions that she recieved her full Bhikkhuni ordination in California "much later."

I don't know what date this would be, but certainly before 1990 I would assume.

Full-steam ahead for the reinstation of the Bhikkhuni Lineage :thumbsup:


Hi Jack,

Correct, she received her novice ordination in 1979. The full ordination came in 1998 at Hsi Lai Temple in Los Angeles. The reason it took so long is because at that time there was not enough support from the bhikkhus and lay people for the reinstatement.

So, not the first woman to receive the full ordination (after reinstatement), but almost!
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8288
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby David N. Snyder » Sun Oct 25, 2009 10:19 pm

:oops:

Jack correctly pointed out to me that she passed away in 1997.

It must have been 1988 then! I transcribed the wrong date in her bio article at Dhamma Wiki. I do have her as passing in 1997, but ordination a year later would have been one tremendous feat! I'll have to re-check, but the correct date must be 1988.

She was ordained at Hsi Lai Temple in Los Angeles and the head monk was a Mahayana monk, but allowed those receiving the ordination to choose Theravada or Mahayana and she chose Theravada. The ordinations in 1996 were the first with Theravada bhikkhus present.
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8288
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby Paññāsikhara » Mon Oct 26, 2009 2:22 am

For issues like this, I actually sometimes think that it is a little bit misleading to refer to the preceptors, whether bhiksus or bhiksunis, as "Mahayana" monks or nuns. After all, their preceptor status is due to their bhiksu/ni upasampada, and nothing to do with their bodhisattva precepts. It may be more appropriate to refer to them primarily as "Dharmagupta" bhiksu/nis, with a note of the Mahayana bodhisattva precepts, both through the Chinese traditions, as really quite secondary.

Interesting to note that the above Venerables are thus technically my Dharma sisters, hehe. :) (We have the same upadhyaya.)
My recently moved Blog, containing some of my writings on the Buddha Dhamma, as well as a number of translations from classical Buddhist texts and modern authors, liturgy, etc.: Huifeng's Prajnacara Blog.
Paññāsikhara
 
Posts: 980
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 5:27 am

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby BudSas » Mon Oct 26, 2009 4:53 am

Paññāsikhara wrote:For issues like this, I actually sometimes think that it is a little bit misleading to refer to the preceptors, whether bhiksus or bhiksunis, as "Mahayana" monks or nuns. After all, their preceptor status is due to their bhiksu/ni upasampada, and nothing to do with their bodhisattva precepts. It may be more appropriate to refer to them primarily as "Dharmagupta" bhiksu/nis, with a note of the Mahayana bodhisattva precepts, both through the Chinese traditions, as really quite secondary.


Ajahn Brahmavamso ( http://www.bangkokpost.com/leisure/leisurescoop/15800/the-bhikkhuni-question ):

"... One of the biggest myths is that bhikkhunis in the Mahayana tradition are somehow separated from the Theravada. But the truth of the matter is, there is no such thing as a Mahayana Vinaya. In all the Mahayana schools, they follow mostly a Dharmagupta Vinaya. Dharmagupta is one of the Theravada sects. They follow Theravada Vinaya. So the bhikkhunis we see even now in Taiwan and China is a lineage that is unbroken since the time of the Buddha. ..."

BDS
BudSas
 
Posts: 82
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 8:12 am

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby gavesako » Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:22 am

In this new text Ajahn Sujato provides some in-depth research into Vinaya (in particular Bhikkhuni issues) and how Vinaya is interpreted:

http://www.scribd.com/doc/19458289/Bhik ... ya-Studies

Bhikkhuni Vinaya Studies
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
User avatar
gavesako
 
Posts: 1416
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: England

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby cooran » Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:39 am

Hello all,

It remains to be seen whether this action by Ajahn Brahms causes division in the worldwide Theravada Ordained Sangha, and whether it actually has positive or negative affects in the years to come.

Maybe a slower process (which was being worked through) with more consulation and eventual consensus would have been a better alternative?

metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---
User avatar
cooran
 
Posts: 7799
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Location: Queensland, Australia

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby BlackBird » Tue Oct 27, 2009 9:44 am

I wonder what the reasons are for not reinstating the Bhikkhuni order in Thailand and Burma?

:anjali:
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
User avatar
BlackBird
 
Posts: 1861
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:07 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Oct 27, 2009 9:55 am

Hi Blackbird,
Blackbird wrote:I wonder what the reasons are for not reinstating the Bhikkhuni order in Thailand and Burma?

This quote from an old E-Sangha post by Ven. Dhammanando (quoted by Robert on DSG) explains some of the arguments:
Dhammanando wrote:""Dhammânandâ has omitted some details - vital details, for they have a bearing
on why the Dharmaguptaka bhikkhunî lineage is considered dubious by vinayadharas
in the Theravada tradition (and also, I believe by those in the Mulasarvastivada
tradition of Tibet).

The original transmission (or rather, alleged transmission) of the bhikkhunî
ordination to China in fact took place in 357 CE. This alleged transmission was
carried out by bhikkhus alone and was therefore INVALID by Theravadin criteria.
It led, however, to a century-long tradition of Chinese bhikkhunî ordinations
being given by bhikkhus alone. Moving forward to 433 CE, of the 300 women
ordained in this year some had not done the two years' training as a sikkhamâna,
while others had already been living as bhikkhunîs beforehand, having received
ordination from the bhikkhu sangha alone. Therefore, by Theravadin criteria
their ordinations failed on the grounds of "defect in the material to be
ordained" (vatthu-vipatti). Those women who had never been sikkhamânas were
ineligible to be ordained until they had fulfilled this preliminary training.
Those women who had already been one-sidedly ordained were living in communion
by theft and were therefore banned for life from receiving a genuine bhikkhunî
ordination. Therefore Dharmaguptaka nuns are not bhikkhunîs by Theravadin
criteria. Moreover, this judgment is not unique to the Theravada, for even
within the Dharmaguptaka tradition the validity of Dharmaguptaka bhikkhunî
ordinations has been challenged, notably by the Taiwanese Vinaya master Ven.
Dao-hai. Dao-hai has argued that at several points in Chinese history the
bhikkhunî paramparâ was irreparably broken (see his Discussion of
Bhikshuni Ordination and its Lineage in China, Based on Scriptures of
Chinese Vinaya and Historical facts, p. 18-19, Dharamsala 1998).

To carry out formal transactions of the sangha in such an irregular manner is
not a "loophole"; it is a violation of Vinaya and a defect that invalidates the
ordination.

Best wishes,
Dhammanando Bhikkhu


Metta
Mike
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10777
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby being5 » Tue Oct 27, 2009 9:59 am

Some months ago I listened with interest to three recordings of Ajahn Sujato addressing a gathering at BSWA where the proposed Bhikkhuni ordination was being discussed. In one talk each of the nuns speaks briefly about what full ordination would mean to her.

http://www.bswa.org/modules/mydownloads/viewcat.php?cid=63

being5
being5
 
Posts: 42
Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2009 9:58 am

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Oct 27, 2009 10:06 am

Hi being5,
being5 wrote: In one talk each of the nuns speaks briefly about what full ordination would mean to her.

Yes, those talks are certainly worth listening to. The issue is difficult and complex and I certainly hope that those women can fulfil their potential.

Metta
Mke
User avatar
mikenz66
 
Posts: 10777
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby gavesako » Tue Oct 27, 2009 12:17 pm

The problem with the transmissions of ordination lineage is that, even in the Theravada tradition, nobody knows for sure whether the lineage was once broken or not. It has happened several times that in one country no bhikkhus to perform a new ordination could be found anymore, and so a group of bhikkhus from elsewhere had to be imported. However, whether those bhikkhus were all legally ordained or not is in itself uncertain, and the historians who wrote the chronicles about these events would not have cast doubts on such matters. Histories were always written for a specific purpose, to celebrate a particular lineage or the king as a patron, so they will necessarily be biased and not totally reliable. This is good to bear in mind when questioning the Chinese transmission.
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
User avatar
gavesako
 
Posts: 1416
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: England

Re: Bhikkhuni Ordination performed - by Ajahn Brahmavamso

Postby gavesako » Tue Oct 27, 2009 12:24 pm

Chris wrote:Hello all,

It remains to be seen whether this action by Ajahn Brahms causes division in the worldwide Theravada Ordained Sangha, and whether it actually has positive or negative affects in the years to come.

Maybe a slower process (which was being worked through) with more consulation and eventual consensus would have been a better alternative?

metta
Chris



I think it is more a matter of loyalty to certain Asian institutions as opposed to direct access to the Vinaya itself and taking the Vinaya as the only measuring stick for actions of the Sangha.

If you haven't seen this article yet, it might also be worth reading because it clarifies the context in which decisions are made in the Thai hierarchy these days:


Buddhism, Democracy and Identity in Thailand by Duncan McCargo

http://books.google.com/books?id=3ountj ... q=&f=false


If monks like Ajahn Brahm who live in Australia want to rely on Australian values and institutions instead, it will be hard to stop them from doing so.
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
User avatar
gavesako
 
Posts: 1416
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: England

Bhikkhuni Ordination

Postby bodhabill » Tue Nov 03, 2009 4:12 am

It is with immense joy that it has been annouced that the first Bhikkhuni Ordination in Australia in the Theravadin tradition in full accordance with the Pali Vinaya was held in Perth on October 22nd at Bodhinyana Monastery

It is with sadness that on Sunday 1 November at Wat Pah Pong (the head monastery of the Ajahn Chah tradition) Ajahn Brahm and his monastery Bodhinyana were formally expelled from Wat Pah Pong for performing this Bhikkhuni Ordination

As a true believer not only in the equality of women but also that the Buddha did create Bhikkhuni's as part of the Sangha I find this reaction astonishing and unfathomable

With Metta
Bill
"Complaining is finding faults, wisdom is finding solutions" Ajahn Brahm
User avatar
bodhabill
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2009 9:38 am
Location: NSW Australia

Next

Return to Ordination and Monastic Life

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest