Two Bhikkhuni Upasampada this month!

Despite the Covid-19 crisis, there will be tho Bhikkhuni Upasampada this month in the USA!

There will be one at Empty Cloud Monastery in New Jersey and one at Aloka Vihara in California.
The events will be kept small because of the Corona crisis and only the minimum number of monastics will attend.

At Empty Cloud Monastery, 5 Samaneris will receive Bhikkhuni ordination on 19th September. 4 of them are from Heartwood Monastery in North Carolina and the other is Ven. Soma!

Samaneri Soma

On September 26th, Samaneri Dhammadipa, who is resident at Aloka Vihara Forest Monastery, will take Upasampada at their outdoor sima.


Congratulations to all new Bhikkhunis! We are grateful to the ordaining sangha for gathering during this time to confer Bhikkhuni ordination despite challenging conditions. Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu! :pray: :pray: :pray:


Yesss!! :heartpulse: :heart_eyes: :pray:t2: :pray:t2: :pray:t2:


Good news indeed!

Could you tell us which Buddhist tradition they belong to?
 Aloka Vihara-Monastery for Bhikkhuni Buddhist Nuns

It seems they are a new form of Buddhist Monastery?

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For me this is a difficult question to answer but the Upasampada will be held using the Pali Vinaya.

Personally I do not feel affiliated to any particular “tradition” other then simply following the Buddha’s teachings. I took Anagarika ordination in a small monastery in Germany, Samaneri ordination in Dhammasara in Perth and full ordination in a Sri Lankan temple in LA. Bhante Sujato has been the main influence on the way I view the Buddhist teachings. So what does that make me? I feel that putting people in any kind of division is not always helpful and more a result of patriarchy than anything else. At the time of the Buddha there were no “traditions”. Everybody practices the Buddha’s teachings in the way they feel is best for their own development at that time and over time views will change and other teachings and teachers will become more helpful.


So, in terms of Vinaya lineage you are mostly aligned with the Theravadin Pali Vinaya then, right? :slight_smile:
Does it make sense to mix or equate exegetical tradition / preferences with Vinaya lineage? :man_shrugging:


Sadhu! Sadhu! sadhu! :pray:


Sadhu, sadhu, sadhu! May all human beings have the requisites for the best possible use of human life, food shelter clothing training, may they have support of aspirations for the Holy life.


Agreed! And to that end I’d like to leave a few links here for those who’d like to support these new Bhikkhunis and help ensure they do have the requisites they need:

  • Ayya Soma, and Empty Cloud Monastery, can be supported through her organization, Buddhist Insights.

  • Heartwood Refuge can be supported on their website, here

  • Aloka Vihara can be supported through their funding organization, Saranaloka

  • And last but certainly not least, the entire Bhikkhuni Sangha can be supported simultaneously by a magical donation to The Alliance for Bhikkhunis



Sadhu, sadhu, sadhu!!

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Such a blessing to have the opportunity to witness five bhikkunī ordinations! And I have to say, the sight of ten bhikkhus and ten bhikkhunīs (all from different lineages and traditions) really warmed the heart :relaxed:

A couple more photos


Does anyone know the names of the four other novices who ordained with Ayya Soma? Not finding them anywhere and would like to share the news. :heart:


If you take a look at the photo I posted of the group, then, left to right, it’s:

Ayya Somā, Ayya Sommasīhī, Ayya Ādikalyāṇā, Ayya Dayānandā, Ayya Paññavati (senior bhikkhunī), and Ayya Thokathokā



No one was willing to cut into Ayya Somā’s (edible-ink) photo!


(I’m betting it’s still sitting in their fridge untouched beyond the edges :joy:)


The whole Vihara should have a bite as a reminder of–and homage to–impermanence :joy:


Yes, so true; exactly!


We offered it to the community of neighborhood animals, and they had quite a feast! :rofl:


Best thing I’ve heard all day :grin:

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The leftover cake? Hopefully there was no chocolate. :face_vomiting: