Telling the story of India's Dhamma Revolution in Europe
On Wed, 2 July, 2014 - 00:02
Amalavajra writes from the India Dhamma Trust, which raises money for the ordination training of Indian Buddhists:
“Amrutdeep, a senior Indian Order member and Public Preceptor, recently completed a successful tour of six Triratna Centres in the Netherlands, France, Belgium and Germany. Coinciding with Buddhist Action Month, his visit fitted the Month’s overarching social action theme very well.
Visiting the sanghas at Metta Vihara, Arnhem, Amsterdam, Paris, Ghent and Essen, he told the story of Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar, leader of the “Dhamma Revolution” among the new Buddhists of India, formerly considered Untouchable. (Indian Buddhists use the Pali spelling, Dhamma, instead of the Sanskrit Dharma.)
Amrutdeep also talked of present-day heroes: Siladarshi, a former Mumbai gangster and now an Order member; also Alka, who, 15 years ago, was an illiterate and destitute mother of three. Today, through her contact with the Dharma and Triratna, she has a Masters’ degree, co-runs a Karuna/Bahujan Hitay girls’ hostel in Latur and is training for ordination. (Such hostels enable poor children who live too far away from a school to get an education whilst being well cared for.)
Members of these six European sanghas generously gave Euros 3,200 (GBP 2,557/USD 4,382) to Amrutdeep and the Indian Dhamma Trust for his team’s work training new Order members. This is enough to support a new member for the women’s team, helping hundreds like Alka to train in the Dhamma each year.”
Watch this 8-minute, moving Clear Vision video about the wider social benefit of women’s ordination in India.