Saturday, December 5

9:30-11:30 am and 1:00-3:00 pm on Zoom

Using poems from ‘The First Free Women’, we will be exploring the struggles and breakthrough moments of the awakened nuns of the Buddha’s time. These women came from all walks of life and their realizations took many forms. The clarity of their transmission connects us to the challenges and opportunities of our own lives, here and now. We welcome practitioners of all genders to join us ~ these poems are relevant to all.

REGISTRATION: Please click here to register and receive the Zoom link. There is no charge to register. This event is being offered by donation in the spirit of the ancient Buddhist tradition of dana, or generosity. You’re invited to make an offering to support San Francisco Insight, and you’ll be invited at the end of the retreat to make a donation to support Ayya Anandabodhi and Ayya Santacitta.

Ayya Anandabodhi first encountered the Buddha’s teachings in her early teens, igniting a deep interest in the Buddha’s Path of Awakening. She lived and trained as a nun in the Forest Tradition at Amaravati and Chithurst monasteries in England from 1992 until 2009, when she moved to the US to help establish Aloka Vihara, a training monastery for women.

Her practice and teaching are guided by early Buddhist scriptures and through nature’s pure and immediate Dhamma. In 2011 she took full Bhikkhuni Ordination, joining the growing number of women who are reclaiming this path given by the Buddha.

Santacitta Bhikkhuni was born in Austria and did her graduate studies in Cultural Anthropology, focusing on dance, theatre and ritual. She also worked in avant-garde dance theatre as a performer and costume designer. In 1988 she met Ajahn Buddhadasa in southern Thailand, who sparked her interest in Buddhist monastic life. She trained as a nun in England and Asia from 1993 until 2009, primarily in the lineage of Ajahn Chah, and has practiced meditation for over 30 years. Since 2002, she has also received teachings in the lineage of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

Santacitta Bhikkhuni co-founded Aloka Vihara Forest Monastery in 2009 and received Bhikkhuni Ordination in 2011. Since moving to the U.S., she has greatly benefited from Bhikkhu Analayo’s teachings on Early Buddhism and from the guidance of Khenmo Konchog Nyima Drolma. She is particularly interested in creating sanctuary close to nature and bringing wisdom traditions to the environmental movement. Additionally she also offers teachings in German, her mother tongue.