Monasteries under direct threat from Australian Fires (merged thread - not in order of posts)

45 minutes ago the warning “Too late to leave” was given for Bundanoon, the village where Santi Forest Monastery is situated. The fire has engulfed the monastery and probably also Sunnataram monastery down the road.



This is sad news.

May all beings be safe and well taken care of.

May the kind deeds of others help rebuild what has been lost. :pray::pray:


Oh no. … too much.

Thankfully we know that the Santi community had already left.


Is that known from first hand reports, or just going by the map? I realize the map is probably correct in any case. Just curious.


All my best hope and my deepest compassion for the sangha so far from here in coordinates but so near in human emotions…

May that widespread catastrophe soon lighten its heavy pressure -
and may find the sangha its monastery intact or reparable after the firestorm -

Nessie from Germany!


So sad… metta to all

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It might be ok yet. The real time fire maps are not always accurate, so in the absence of actual information on the ground we shouldn’t jump to conclusions yet either way!

Here’s this map from this morning. Santi is where the binoculars are. Safe maybe! But things are very uncertain and could change at any moment.


Thank you Bhante for information and for hope it brings. :anjal:

Lets hope that good kamma of this place and our metta will/has hold it safe from fire :lotus: :thaibuddha: :lotus:



Whatever has or will occur, may the monastics and all have what they need. :pray:


This morning’s map looks better than last night’s. Anicca strikes again. Bhante please let us know as soon as someone has been able to make a site inspection.


The Santi community have asked a local friend to check on Santi when it’s safe. There’s still fire danger around the village of Bundanoon, with fires on both sides.

Two other Buddhist communities in neighbouring areas are also affected by the fires - Sunnataram Monastery (monks and peacocks safely evacuated) and Vejjasala Retreat Centre, run by the Association of Engaged Buddhists. (Also empty at this time)

A short article on just how uncertain the situation is:

So many living beings have been affected by these fires. Metta to all!


It’s very sad when in our country was flooded, in Australia was a forest firestorm… :frowning:


Holy wow that’s a lot of smoke:


My friend, waiting to defend his place further south, thinks that the RFS updates the map from the helicopters he’s observed flying over. It would be hard for them to see precisely what’s happened on the ground through all that smoke.


(@Ayya Vimala) Found the following link in the link-jungle below your reference : Claude Walker on Twitter: "I'll try to get some rest, if I can Dad+Step-Mum are in Exeter ♥️😟 The Firies on comms are tired to the bone. The people in the field even more so; Real heroes. We need the army helping more with logistics. Climate change skeptics will ruin us with inaction #AustraliaOnFire" . (…many short reports at this account) Reporting tightly at least 24 hours from Bundanoon and Exeter via his twitter account. Helped even more to get an understanding for the situation of the monastery down under and its sangha which is evacuated to friends.
Thanks for your sharing!


Sorry, I completely missed this thread when posting a new topic on Santi this afternoon.

Looks to me the heat map shows Santi & Suññataram being not in the hot spots.


That’s the latest news from Ayya Jitindriya and Ayya Jayasara from Santi Monastery—who joined me for pindapata today in Sydney.

This news came after the update they posted late on the Santi website last night:

They are heartened by all the concern from all those people who have been posting here and elsewhere and asked me to thank you all for keeping Santi in your thoughts.

The situation in the Bundanoon is still volatile with new fires in the area today. So it’s not an ‘all clear’ just yet…


Thanks Bhante @Akaliko!

More info on another thread here

Santi sits on the northern edge of a vast forest that is burning in an extraordinary firestorm. A call has gone out among nuns to send blessings, and you can add blessings too.

The fire is not exactly close, yet is enormous, having covered far more land than remains between it and Santi; it is completely uncontrolled in the worst rated fire conducive conditions (“Catastrophic” combo of heat, high winds & low humidity), and spreading north quickly.

In just 2 hours the front northern edge noticeably changed, as you can see in these screenshots taken about 3 hours ago & 1 hour ago, respectively. (Santi is just below the middle of the town’s name Bundanoon.)

The losses of habitat already are staggering.

The forest in and south of Santi is the home, by aboriginal designation, of the famous Lyre bird. (Male Lyre birds hold court at Santi, choosing a good place for sound projection, and cutting loose heart stopping unique remixes of every bird’s songs.) The land has phenomenal properties of micro-climates; even within Santi’s property, walking down the steep terrain from ridge to creek, the climate shifts from arid to tropical - complete with leeches and fern leaves taller than a man! Countless birds sing or shriek, colorful parrots descend upon trees by the dozens, wombats leave their droppings on prominent rocks on paths right where you need to step… It’s magical place, with stunning cliffs, gullies and beautiful, deep forest. And one of only a handful of forest dwellings for Theravada Buddhist nun communities in the world.

Kindly do whatever you do to send blessings - chant, recite words of truth, pray, call upon assistance of forest devas, share merits, anything. Many well wishes coming from around the world can only help.



Yes, this is the beautiful monastery built by Bhante @Sujato.