Thubten Chödron
Thubten Chodron image
Thubten Chödron in March of 2008
Religion Tibetan Buddhism
School Gelug
Born 1950
United States
Senior posting
Title Venerable

Thubten Chodron is an American Tibetan Buddhist nun and a central figure in reinstating the Bhikshuni (tib. Gelongma) ordination of women. She is a student of H. H. XIVth Dalai Lama, Tsenzhap Serkong Rinpoche, Thubten Zopa Rinpoche and other Tibetan masters .

Born in 1950, she grew up near Los Angeles, California, United States and earned her B.A. in History, University of California at Los Angeles in 1971. While doing graduate work in Education, she taught elementary school. She took a course with Ven. Lama Yeshe and Ven. Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 1975, inspiring her to study and practice Tibetan tradition at their monastery in Nepal. In 1977, she received Sramanerika (novice) ordination, and in 1986, she travelled to Taiwan to receive the full Bhikshuni ordination.

She has studied and practiced Buddhism of the Tibetan tradition extensively, in India and Nepal, and for three years at Dorje Pamo Monastery in France. She has held several significant posts, including Director of the spiritual program at Lama Tzong Khapa Institute, Italy for two years, Resident Teacher at Amitabha Buddhist Centre in Singapore, and ten years as Spiritual Director and Resident Teacher at Dharma Friendship Foundation in Seattle. She has written numerous articles and books, such as Open Heart, Clear Mind; Buddhism for Beginners; Taming the Mind; Working with Anger; How to Free Your Mind: Tara the Liberator; and Cultivating a Compassionate Heart: The Yoga Method of Chenrezig.

Ven. Chodron is known for her work in re-establishing the Bhikshuni lingeage, cultivating interfaith dialogue, creating Dharma outreach in prisons, and teaching the Dharma worldwide. Her teaching emphasizes practical application of Buddhist practices in daily life and she is respected for making them easily understood and practiced by Westerners. Ven. Chodron is a co-organizer of Life as a Western Buddhist Nun, an international conference of Western Buddhist nuns. She was also a crucial participant in the 1993 and 1994 Western Buddhist teachers conferences with H. H. XIVth Dalai Lama and was instrumental in the creation of the 2007 International Congress on Buddhist Women's Role in the Sangha. She is a member of the Committee of Western Bhikshunis [1] and attends the annual gatherings of Western Buddhist Monastics in the USA.

She is founder and Abbess of Sravasti Abbey, a Buddhist monastery near Newport, Washington.

See also


  1. Committee of Western Bhikshunis

External links

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