VENERABLE AJAHN MEDHI, from Chaiya, Thailand, ordained in 1987 as a monk and has lived at Wat Suan Mokkh since he was 20 years old. He hosts 10 day meditations retreats, chanting, mindfulness of breathing courses in English, and guides school students and adults with good teachings and good humor.

JEFF OLIVER has sixteen years of experience in Vipassana meditation, eight of which he was a Buddhist monk in the Burmese tradition. Now as a freelance meditation teacher, he is invited to share his experiences in many countries including, Australia, Czech Republic, Turkey, Malaysia and Thailand, leading meditation retreats and sharing dhamma.  

For further information: https://www.facebook.com/jeff.oliver.169

 

VENERABLE BHANTE SUKHACITTO (in middle of photo) was born in Germany in 1963. He first came into contact with Buddhism in 1986 in Thailand by attending a meditation retreat, offered through Wat Suan Mokkh. He ordained there as a novice in 1989 and as a Bhikkhu in 1990. He moved to the West in 1993. Since then he has lived at various monasteries in the West, including Dhammapala Monastery in Switzerland for six years. He first visited Amaravati as a monk several times in the 1990s. He stayed at Amaravati for the 2007 and 2008 winter retreats and came to live at Amaravati, Buddhist monastery in the tradition of Ajahn Chah and Ajahn Sumedho, in April 2009.

1024px Ajahn SucittoVENERABLE AJAHN SUCITTO was born in London in 1949. Before entering monastic life, he graduated from England's University of Warwick with a degree in English and American Literature in 1971. He  spent a few years following the lifestyle of the alternative culture of the time, before heading  overland to India in 1974 on a spiritual quest. This eventually landed him in Thailand in 1975,  where he was inspired by a meditation class in English in Wat Meung Maung given by an English  monk, Phra Alan Nyānavajīro. Sensing an important  turn in his spiritual journey, Sucitto entered the  monastery where Phra Nyānavajīro lived:  Wat Kiriwong in Nakhon Sawan. On 25 September he  took samanera precepts and on 22  March 1976 he was ordained as a bhikku, both in Wat Potharam  in Nakhon Sawan.

A chance sojourn at Wat Umong in Chiang Mai in December 1976 brought Ajahn Sucitto into contact  with (now) Luang Por Sumedho, who was passing through Chiang Mai at the time. This was an  auspicious encounter, as it prepared the ground for Ajahn to visit Luang Por in Hampstead when he  visited England in 1978. Luang Por had taken up residence in the Hampstead Buddhist Vihara in  1977, and readily accepted Ajahn Sucitto as a disciple. Ajahn trained under Luang Por for much of the ensuing fourteen years.

In 1979, Ajahn Sucitto was part of the group that established Cittaviveka Forest Monastery in Chithurst, West Sussex (www.cittaviveka.org/). He has lived there for the greater part of his monastic life and has been its abbot since 1992. He began teaching retreats for laypeople after the Rains Retreat of 1981 and has continued to teach retreats in Britain and overseas ever since.

For further information: https://forestsangha.org/teachings/audio/speakers/ajahn-sucitto

IMG 0171JOSEPH KAPPEL lived as a Buddhist monk for 20 years as Bhikkhu Pabhakaro, with Ajahn Chah and Ajahn Sumedho in Thailand and Great Britain. His initial interest in Buddhism was inspired by visits to Thailand from Vietnam where he served as a combat helicopter pilot in 1969-70. During his sojourns to Thailand, Joseph was deeply moved by a country and people that were steeped in Buddhist teachings. In short, combat in Vietnam paved the way for him to embrace a way of life that leads us on a path that demonstrates how suffering is created and how to avoid it. In this way, we open our eyes to witness ourselves in others with compassion and understanding.

Since leaving monastic life in 1991, Joseph has taught MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) in Massachusetts’s prisons, received a Masters Degree in Education from Harvard University, and worked with college athletes to facilitate “mental fitness” and the inner game. He has also led meditation courses and retreats in numerous settings in the US, and has co-led retreats with Ajahn Amaro at Amaravati Buddhist Monastery in England. Joseph and his wife Catherine live in Leominster, Massachusetts.

Joseph’s passion remains to encourage everyone to awaken in daily life and use this journey to cultivate deep understanding, virtuous conduct, and wise effort and reflection. This enables us to uncover those obstacles that prevent us from realizing freedom from birth and death.

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