Sakyadhita visited the International Congress on Buddhist Women's Role in the Sangha in Hamburg 2007.
Afterwards, Ranjani de Silva comes to visit in England and to spend some time in retreat with the Nuns of Amaravati. We are also able to find some time together, and sitting on a sunny bench in a park in Cambridge, I listen to her story of the founding of Sakyadhita Sri Lanka.
Ranjani says, she never really knew about the situation of the dasalsilmathas (ten-precept nuns) in her own country, until she took part in the first Sakyadhita Conference in 1987 in Bodhgaya, where she became a founder member.
Since then, she has devoted her time and energy to support the nuns and to help restore the lineage of full ordination for nuns in her country. She started training nuns to do hospital work in Sri Lanka and in 1992 founded the Sakyadhita Sri Lanka Branch. In 1993 she organized the 3rd Sakyadhita International Conference in Colombo. She acted as Vice President from 1993 to 1995 and served as President from 1995 to 2002. In 2000, she was finally able to open a Centre for nuns, the Sakyadhita Training and Meditation Centre, near Colombo. She never had any money, just her intent and an open heart. She says 'it just all came together, it was for the sake of the nuns, it was the Dhamma.' Sri Lanka has now about 400 fully ordained nuns, reviving the lineage after a period of about a thousand years. From small acorns .....
This is a short extract from the Sakyadhita October Newsletter. To download the full newsletter in PDF format, click here
For back issues, please email gassner [at] sakyadhita-europe [dot] org