This Fresh Existence: Heart Teachings from Bhikkhuni Dhammananda

A TV personality, academic, and author, Bhikkhuni Dhammananda defied convention to become the first woman fully ordained in the Thai Theravada Buddhist tradition. She shattered gender barriers and inspired a new era of equality and compassion. Her student, American author Cindy Rasicot, tells her story, and shares Bhikkhuni Dhammananda’s gentle wisdom and direct insights about how to live a more compassionate life.

£9.99

A TV personality, academic, and author, Bhikkhuni Dhammananda defied convention to become the first woman fully ordained in the Thai Theravada Buddhist tradition. She shattered gender barriers and inspired a new era of equality and compassion. Her student, American author Cindy Rasicot, tells her story, and shares Bhikkhuni Dhammananda’s gentle wisdom and direct insights about how to live a more compassionate life.

Endorsements

‘I look to Venerable Dhammananda and her great community...as a revolutionary force for good for the future of Buddhism in the world. Her story, her life, and her courage are an example to all of us of what it means to speak truth to power, to stand in integrity, and to manifest unconditional wisdom and compassion.’ – Roshi Joan Halifax, from the Foreword

'Venerable Dhammananda's story is one of courage, patience, and most of all compassion. Tracing her journey from scholar and TV personality to one of the first ordained nuns in modern-day Thailand, Rasicot's account of Venerable Dhammananda's life paints an inspiring picture of the woman responsible for reviving the bhikkhuni order in Thailand.' – Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Life

‘A beautiful dialogue with a wonderful and wise teacher. Dhammananda is a courageous pioneer, a nun who embodies blessings and points us to our inner freedom and compassion.’ – Jack Kornfield, author of A Path with Heart

‘We welcome this biography of Venerable Dhammananda Mahatheri, which covers the life and challenges of the first Thai bhikkhuni. There was no one more qualified in Thailand to have taken on this historic role of restoring the Fourfold Sangha, as originally envisioned by the Buddha. Venerable Dhammananda Mahatheri has trained generations of women in the monastic role and, despite ongoing opposition from high-level ecclesiastics, has continued to inspire many women to go forth as bhikkhunis in the Theravada tradition. We rejoice in her achievement.’ – Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo, author of The Heroic Heart, founder of Dongyu Gatsal Ling Nunnery, co-president of the International Buddhist Confederation

‘Cindy has written an engaging and informative book about her beloved teacher Venerable Dhammananda, who through personal example has opened a viable pathway for Thai women to ordain as bhikkhunis in the Theravada tradition.’ – Dharmacharini Anagarika Sanghadevi, co-founder Taraloka Buddhist Retreat Centre for Women, author of Living Together

'The stories and perspectives of Buddhist women have long been overlooked and underrepresented. In This Fresh Existence, Cindy Rasicot shares her relationship with Venerable Dhammananda, Thailand’s first fully ordained Theravada Buddhist Bhikkhuni. The book recounts the story of Venerable Dhammananda’s life, shares her wise, compassionate teachings, and illuminates the struggle and controversy over women’s full ordination for Theravada nuns that continues to this day. This is a story of great heart. In a world rife with divisiveness and pain, this intimate account of Venerable Dhammananda’s courage, tenacity, and tenderness offers a potent balm.' – Pamela Weiss, author of A Bigger Sky: Awakening a Fierce Feminine Buddhism

'Cindy Rasicot’s relationship with Bhikkhuni Dhammananda provides us with a precious opportunity to hear about Bhikkhuni Dhammananda’s extraordinary life, her teachings, and some of the challenges she faced as she helped pave the road for Theravada Buddhist women to ordain. Rasicot’s writing is elegant, sincere, profoundly inviting. With this book, we catch a glimpse of a remarkable teacher. What a wonderful contribution!' – Vanessa Sasson, author of Yasodhara and the Buddha and The Gathering: A Story of the First Buddhist Women

book cover with orange circle in the middle and greenish edges

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