On Sunday 18th of September, the three Bhikkhunis who had been “Ordained on One Side” by the Bhikkhuni Sangha at Santi Forest Monastery in NSW, presented themselves to the Bhikkhu Sangha at Bodhinyana Monastery in Western Australia. Ayya Vajira, Ayya Dhammavati and Ayya Santacari received ordination from the Bhikkhu Sangha headed by Ajahn Brahmavamso with Ajahn Brahmali acting with him as Kammavacacariyas [speakers of the action to ordain]. The witnessing Bhikkhus were Bhikkhu Nitho, Bhikkhu Kassapa, Bhikkhu Sunno and Bhikkhu Nibbuto, making a Sangha of 6 Bhikkhus to perform the ordination. Five being the minimum number of Bhikkhus to perform a “Sangha Kamma” ie to enact a “legal act” of the Sangha.
In a quiet ceremony attended by only the few residents of the monastery and neighbouring Jhana Grove, the “one sided” Bhikkhunis waited to be called over by the Bhikkhu Sangha with a feeling of reverent gladness.
Approaching the Bhikkhu Sangha, the three bowed their respect and then in joyous union chanted the Pali formula to request the Upasampada higher ordination from the Bhikkhus.
Then the newly ordained Bhikkhunis were given an explanation of the support requisites they can expect followed by a short exposition of the Dhamma, explaining the purpose of the Holy Life.
This was first chanted in Pali then explained in English.
It was such a treat to have such a personal Dhamma talk from Ajahn Brahm encouraging us to make use of the Holy Life to seek liberation and Nibbana.
And with this, the Ordination is complete! Three new Fully Ordained Bhikkhunis are born into the Sangha of the Blessed One. We are all blessed by this event which enriches the entire fourfold Sangha.
This ordination brings the number of fully ordained Theravada Bhikkhunis living in Australia to about 17.