14th October marks the anniversary of the mass conversions into Buddhism led by Dr Ambedkar - a day when hundreds of thousands of ‘untouchable’ people were liberated from the oppression of the Hindu caste system as well as being a significant moment in the revival of Buddhism in India.
In this video Dhammacharini Jnanasuri shares her moving story about being at Dr Ambedkar’s mass conversion to Buddhism in 1956 and how she found her way to the Triratna Buddhist community.
Jnanasuri and Karunamaya (who supports Jnanasuri) talk about their work helping over 800 women in India to prepare for ordination. They mention the possibility of developing a women’s retreat centre and also some of the difficulties they face in their work.
Better late than never, we’re happy to announce that at the public ordination held on 30 August, 2015 at Ven. Hsuen Tsang Retreat Centre, Bor-Dharan Maharashtra, India, the following women were ordained:
Private Preceptor Vijaya:
Anita Thool (South West Nagpur) becomes Amritanandi
Asha Nakhale (North Nagpur) becomes Shwetchitta
Shila Walke (North Nagpur) becomes Shubhrachitta ...
On this day, 14th October 1956, Dr BR Ambedkar publicly converted to Buddhism, followed by hundreds of thousands of his followers, fellow members of India’s Scheduled Castes, escaping their oppression as what were formerly termed “Untouchable” people. Such mass conversions continue to this day.
As a little girl, Jnanasuri was there at the ceremony in Nagpur. Today she is the most senior Dhammacharini in India; one of Triratna’s two Indian female public preceptors, responsible for the training of the 850 Indian women currently...
Alas, alas… The organisers had arranged for someone to record audio and video of all the talks that are going on here each day, but they cancelled the day before the Convention! With iPhones and camcorders we are attempting to capture as much as we can, and the first two days went well in that regard. Unfortunately though, it’s now got very hot (well, for westerners!) and the many fans in the marquee are...