Triratna Women is a project aiming to inspire women to practise Buddhism in the modern world. We will do this by telling stories of women who encounter the radical vision of the Buddha’s teaching through the Triratna Buddhist Order (until 2010 the Western Buddhist Order). The Order offers equal ordination for women and men and has hence created a path for women that is unique in the Buddhist world. The Order was founded by Urgyen Sangharakshita in 1968.

Stories of women committing their lives to the Buddhist path are inspiring. Through interviews we will learn from the lives of mothers, sisters, women in professional lives, women living in communities, women pioneering in other countries to build Centres, and women working for Buddhism in India. What surfaces in these stories is commitment to the Path, friendships that grow through joint activities and aspirations, and a vision that is radical and inviting.

The project coordinators are Danasamudra and Dharmaprabha, with a growing group of volunteers. Danasamudra has a background in oral history research. Currently she is librarian at the Sangharakshita Library at Adhisthana. Dharmaprabha is a social scientist with a background in ethnographic research, who currently works in the field of mental health. The project is funded by a small grant from the Future Dharma Fund.

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Top: Western Buddhist Order Women’s Convention, Taraloka Retreat Centre, 1990.

Right: Vajrapushpa and Vajragita after their ordinations, early 1980s.