Notable Living Contemporary Teachers

Home Base
Nakhonpathom, Thailand

Foundation of Teaching
Buddhism, Love, Compassion, Presence

Example of Teaching
“I am but a small crack on the wall, the wall of patriarchy, the wall of hierarchy, the wall of injustice. Suddenly there are many more cracks! Eventually the wall crumpled.”

“Lo, and behold, the Buddha is standing on the other side. With his opened arms to welcome his daughters, Who struggled to keep up the heritage, the heritage given by the Buddha, The heritage of the bhikkhunis.”

Songdhammakalyani Monastry
195 Petkasem Highway Muang District
Nakhonpathom Thailand 73000

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Dhammananda Bhikkhuni

Bhikkhuni Dhammananda came from a pretigious family, her father was a politician belonging to the Democrat party in Thailand. Later on her mother became the first bhikkhuni (fully ordained female nun) taking her ordination from Taiwan. Bhikkhuni Dhammananda did her study in India and Canada and became the first woman in Thailand to have a Ph.D. in Buddhist Studies. Had 30 years of teaching experience in one of the top Universities in Bangkok.

She had a busy and successful life both teaching and running TV dhamma talk show for 7 years. She is well known internationally among Buddhist academics with her involvement in ordination for women and concern for environment. In her private life she was married with three grown sons, and divorced to prepare for her spiritual journey. She left her colorful background to join the Order and became the first fully ordained bhikkhuni in Theravada tradition with the turn of the new millennium. She is one of the prestigious Peace Councilors among other leading Religious leaders of the world including H.H.the Dalai Lama. In 2004 she was awarded outstanding Buddhist women by the UN and 2005 she was nominated for 1000 women for Nobel Peace award.

She sits as a Buddhist committee member to select Niwano Peace Prize. She is editor of Yasodhara, Newsletter for International Buddhist women’s activities from 1984. She runs her own temple, Songdhammakalyani, an hour drive from Bangkok and now is in the process of establishing her own Sangha inspite of the fact that the Thai bhikkhu Sangha has no place for bhikkhuni Sangha.

She is a peace-loving person, full of energy and compassionate to help the suffering women in her country. She runs a home of peace and love to help the underprivileged girls and women. She offers her temple as an international center for learning and training primarily for women.



  1. “I do not choose to be ordained because I want people to recognize me. I did it because I want to carry on the heritage of the Lord Buddha. I am trying to revive the four pillars of Buddhism—bhikkus, bhikkhunis, laymen and laywomen—that will sustain the religion into the future. I don’t mind if some people reserve different opinions about bhikkhunis. The public will be the ones to judge our worth.”
  2. “But in my life, in my line of practice, every moment breathing in and out – this is the practice. To talk to people and maintain equanimity; to talk to my students without getting frustrated, that is practice.”
  3. “So the sitting with closed eyes kind of meditation is good practice for beginners, so that you know how to handle your Greed, Hatred and Delusion [Lobha, Dosa, Moha]. It is meant for that kind of practice to give you the experience of calmness of mind, so that you can extend it when you have your eyes open …..”
  4. “Westerners go around and shop around and finally make the choice to be Buddhist. When you are thrown into it by birth it is difficult to see the value of it, hard to really appreciate. So I will not be surprised if in the end Buddhism is greater in the West.”
  5. “In the last 10 years people are coming asking questions, really asking, not happy with just what they have learned from the traditional monks – a lot more questions are coming from the public.”
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