Dear Friends in the Dhamma,
After years of trying to materialize our vision of creating a training monastery for women, we have to acknowledge that this vision has not come to fruition. Aloka Vihara has been a refuge for many people, however, since its inception in 2009, we have attracted very few strong candidates for the bhikkhuni training. Fortunately, there are other bhikkhuni training monasteries in the US who are receiving candidates.
Having deeply considered this, we have decided to let go of our vision of a training monastery and to support each other as we transition into this next phase. We continue as bhikkhunis, living the teachings of the Buddha and of the Earth for the benefit of all beings.
Ayya Santacitta has recently moved to the North bay and started the Aloka Earth Room, a contemporary temple-space synthesizing Dharma, ecology and art.
Ayya Anandabodhi will be spending much of 2023 on sabbatical, more info to come soon. Anagarika Bethany continues her training with Ayya Anandabodhi and will be also spending some time with Ayya Ahimsa in Canada.
Ayya Ahimsa has joined Canmore Theravada Buddhist Monastery in her native Canada, where she will have more time for formal meditation practice.
Ayya Niyyanika is taking time for personal retreat, followed by a time of exploration of the wider Theravada Buddhist world.
While the expression of our bhikkhuni lives is changing, we will continue to practice this precious training and teach for the benefit of all beings. We will contiune to offer our annual Saranaloka New Year’s Retreat and look forward to seeing you at our teaching events, which you can find here.