Some thoughts about international womens day 8th March 2020

One of the things that first impressed me about the Buddha, when I was just a little girl, was that he treated women as equals in the Dhamma. This was such an enlightened view in my young eyes, looking out from a female body.

It was radical back then and it is STILL radical today.

Today I give thanks for all the beings, humans, devas, monastics, and laypeople who work to maintain this non-biased, non-deluded frame of reference.

I encourage everyone to spend a little time thinking about all the needless suffering caused by those who don’t see things clearly, for imposing restrictions, impediments and obstacles on the Dhamma path for anyone.

I encourage everyone to give thanks to all those Noble ones who have worked and continue to work so tirelessly to remove obstacles and clear the Dhamma Path for all beings.

Sadhu Sadhu Sadhu

I will start a list of gratitude with just a very few names
Gratitude to MahaMaya mother of the Buddha
Gratitude to MahaPajapati Gotami Buddhas Aunt and first Bikkhuni
Gratitude to Ajahn Brahm, ordaining Bikkhunis in Australia in 2009, thus reviving the Theravada bikkhuni lineage in the Thai forest tradition
Gratitude to Ajahn Sujato, advocate and supporter for Bikkhuni ordination

:anjal: :anjal: :anjal:
:pray: :pray: :pray:
:dharmawheel: :dharmawheel: :dharmawheel:

Please feel free to add to this list

May all beings of any and every gender have access to the True Dhamma of The Buddha

Added. There are so MANY monastics and lay people who are on my list of gratitude… Gratitude to all for the gift of Dhamma

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Gratitude to the Alliance for Bhikkhunis https://www.bhikkhuni.net/
and the support and education they have made possible for Buddhists.
Gratitude to all its participants.
Gratitude to Susan Pembroke, its visionary founder and long time volunteer steward/wrangler.

:anjal: :anjal: :anjal:
:lotus: :lotus: :lotus:

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Thank you, Ayya Vimala and Ayya Sabbamitta, cause you are both an example of strenght, beautiful vulnerability, courage, humbleness, wisdom, intelligence and loving kindness (I know, I’m putting a lot on your shoulders now, @Vimala and @sabbamitta :full_moon_with_face:). Thank you so much for creating Tilorien Monastery and its sangha. Without Ayya’s it would be rather difficult to find Buddhism in this world, every day is a great day to pay respects to you.

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Gratitude to Ayya Khema 1923-1997 who was the first western woman to be ordained as a Theravadan nun, was a founder of Wat Buddha Dhamma in NSW, founded the Nuns’ Island in Sri Lanka and the Buddha-Haus im Allgäu in Germany, and who with Tenzin Palmo organised the first international conference of Buddhist nuns (Sakyadhita).

Sadhu sadhu sadhu. :pray:

Ayya Khema’s Dhamma talks recorded in English.
Books in English.
Books in German.

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Recently, I found that the Buddha was not the first guru allowing women to join the sangha.
The Mahavira from Jainism was the first guru allowing women to become monks.
According to evidences on both sides, we know that Mahavira was older than Buddha.
So Mahavira should built up Jaina women sangha earlier than Buddhist’s, also considering the Buddha rejected Ananda’s advice for women joining the sangha 3 times.
But the Jaina scriptures were all burnt up, so we are not very sure about what actually happened during Mahavira and Buddha’s time.

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Very interesting, thanks for sharing :slight_smile:

It doesn’t matter to me who was first, or middle or last, but that gender isn’t a determinant for progress in the Dhamma.

Again, from my perspective, it isn’t so much about sex characteristics/ form/ etc, but that Dhamma should be available for everybody, in spite of whatever body we are ‘wearing’ at the moment.

Thank you for your interesting point :slight_smile: :pray:

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Thank you so much for your kind words @anon36724545! :pray:
But no one or two persons can be solely responsible for a communal effort. There have been many who have supported so much, especially @Aminah and Ayya Anandabodhi but certainly also the men who supported us in so many ways like Danny, Bhante Sujato, Ajahn Brahmali and Ven. Akaliko. No communal effort can happen when people don’t all work together, regardless of race, gender and orientation.

At the time of his death, the Jain nun’s order was larger than the monk’s order. Unfortunately, the nuns were regarded as lesser than the monks.

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Thank you, @anon36724545 and Venerable @Vimala. I have always enjoyed to be part of an inspiring project and am grateful for such a great opportunity. Today I can rejoice in seeing Tilorien Monastery grow and develop. What would it be without people like you, Teresia, and many others?

May all beings be able to find their path and finally be liberated from all sorts of restrictions! :dharmawheel: :heart:

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Thanks for a delightful thought and invitation to reflect on these things, Viveka. Just at the minute I’ve cause to be particularly moved by contemplating the rain of blessings—both communal and personal—that have poured over the centuries to this day. And, should we all give what we can—minuscule or massive gifts, in whatever form; teachings, kindnesses, persistence, example, material, whatever—when and where we can, future generations will continue to get drenched.

The strand of “who” that’s popped up a bit in this thread reminded me of a line in really beautiful talk I heard not that long ago: “when you do something good, when people start praising you; always offer that to the Dhamma”. Within the context of the talk, the comment was more addressing how to not get too caught up in praise, but I think it can be happily repurposed for this setting.

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:pray: Beautiful :slightly_smiling_face:
Dhamma, like rain on the mountain top, gathering in momentum drop by drop into streams and rivers …
:revolving_hearts: :dharmawheel: :sun_behind_rain_cloud: :droplet: :national_park: :droplet: :ocean: :rainbow: :revolving_hearts: :gem: :sunflower: :thaibuddha:

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One of my faforite suttas:

AN10.61:8.1: It’s like when it rains heavily on a mountain top, and the water flows downhill to fill the hollows, crevices, and creeks. As they become full, they fill up the pools. The pools fill up the lakes, the lakes fill up the streams, and the streams fill up the rivers. And as the rivers become full, they fill up the ocean.
AN10.61:8.2: That’s the fuel for the ocean, and that’s how it’s filled up.
AN10.61:9.1: In the same way, when the factor of associating with good people is fulfilled, it fulfills the factor of listening to the true teaching. When the factor of listening to the true teaching is fulfilled, it fulfills the factor of faith … proper attention … mindfulness and situational awareness … sense restraint …the three kinds of good conduct … the four kinds of mindfulness meditation … the seven awakening factors. When the seven awakening factors are fulfilled, they fulfill knowledge and freedom.

:heart:

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