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Conference Previews  

Of the 12th Sakyadhita International Conference on Buddhist Women

Bangkok, Thailand

June 12-18, 2011    

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Get more information about the Conference

Conference Brochure in English

Conference Program 

Presentation Abstracts
Workshop Abstracts
Presenter Bios
Ven. Karma Lekshe Tsomo

Ven. Karma Lekshe Tsomo, a founder of Sakyadhita International  

Dr. Christie Chang

Dr. Christie Yuling Chang President, Sakyadhita International Association of Buddhist Women  

Wasfia Nazreen

Wasfia Nazreen

For complete conference details and registration information, and for conference information in other languages, visit the Sakyadhita



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Make a Donation to help a Buddhist laywoman or monastic/nun attend the Bangkok conference



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Ayutthaya Temple Thailand
Join the temple tour on June 19 to Ayutthaya, Thailand

Sathira-Dhammasathan Bangkok

Sathira-Dhammasathan, the conference location


Bangkok Resort Hotel skyview
Bangkok Resort Hotel

Greetings in the Dharma!  

There's so much to do, see, and learn when you attend a Sakyadhita International Conference: hear papers, attend workshops, meditate and reflect, make new friends and meet dear ones again, learn about many Buddhist traditions and cultures. This is the first in a series of monthly emails giving you a preview of what you'll experience at the upcoming conference in Bangkok! See you there!

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Mother Theresa and the Bodhisattva Ideal by Ven. Karma Lekshe Tsomo

Karma Lekshe Tsomo studied Buddhism in Dharamsala, India, for 15 years and received a Doctorate in Philosophy from the University of Hawai`i at Manoa, with research on death and identity in China and Tibet; she is a founder and Past President of Sakyadhita International and director of Jamyang Foundation, an initiative to provide educational opportunities for women in developing countries. Dr Tsomo is now an associate professor in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of San Diego.  In her paper, "Mother Theresa and the Bodhisattva Ideal," Ven. Tsomo will offer a Buddhist analysis of the life and work of Mother Theresa: to what extent akin to the aspirations and achievements of a Bodhisattva?

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Learning to Lead and Leading to Learn: An Awakening Journey to Leadership by Dr. Christie Chang


The current President of Sakyadhita International, Dr. Christie Chang, is also a founder of Sakyadhita Taiwan. A linguist by training, with a Ph.D. from the University of Hawai'i at Manoa, she is also the resident director of the Council on International Educational Exchange's program at National Chengchi University. Her paper, titled "Learning to Lead and Leading to Learn: An Awakening Journey to Leadership" is a personal account of the learning opportunities she's discovered as the new president of Sakyadhita International. What does it mean to be a lay Buddhist woman president? How do gender stereotypes affect leadership roles for women?

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The Mystical Mass Migration of Elephants in Cambodia: Moral Chaos, Sanctuaries, and Voluntary Displacement by Mr. Napakadol Kittisenee


A number of papers at the conference will address the topic of animals as sentient beings, in relation to Buddhist notions of compassion and liberation. This paper tells the story - as myth, exodus, and pilgrimage - of a mass migration of elephants during the "Khmer Rouge" era (1975-79) as told to the author by a Buddhist laywoman. Mr. Napakadol Kittisenee is a research fellow at the Regional Center for Social Science and Sustainable Development, Faculty of Social Sciences, Chiang Mai University. He is pursuing a masters' degree in anthropology at Thammasat University. His research reflects the latest developments in trans-national religious ethnology.

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The Question of Lineage from Women's Perspective: Buddhist Women and Political Power

by Wasfia Nasreen


Wasfia Nasreen is a senior staff writer for The Weekend Independent in Dhaka and a researcher for CARE Bangladesh. She is also a special correspondent for Independent World Report and a distant scholar of Samye Ling College, Scotland.  Her paper, titled "The Question of Lineage from Women's Perspectives: Buddhist Women and Political Power," introduces Buddhism in Bangladesh, which dates back to the time of King Ashoka. Her paper is based on case studies of Theravada Buddhism as practiced in the Chittagong Hill Tracts and looks at the status of Buddhist women in terms of religious freedom and political power.

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Organizing Lay Support for the Theravada Bhikkhuni Sangha
by Susan Pembroke


Susan Pembroke is a practicing psychotherapist and founder and guiding teacher of Insight Meditation in Ventura, California. She began meditating in 1986 and has studied with a number of teachers in the Theravada tradition, including Ayya Khema. Susan is the founder and president of the Alliance for Bhikkhunis and editor-in-chief of its magazine, Present. Founding this organization to support monastic women of the Theravadin tradition is her way showing gratitude to Ayya Khema and honoring her memory. Her paper, "Organizing Lay Support for the Theravada Bhikkhuni Sangha," examines ways to learn about all aspects of the Bhikkhuni Sangha: its history, lineages, communities, networks, etc., to foster dialogue and further empower nuns.

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Registration Deadline May 1

This is a brief glimpse of the riches that await you at the 12th Sakyadhita International Conference! Stay tuned for upcoming monthly emails about other papers, interactive workshops, the keynote speaker, and more. And don't forget to register soon!

Conference Information in Other Languages

Bahasa Indonesia 







Монгол хэл 

Tiếng Việt  

Sakyadhita International website

Sakyadhita International Association of Buddhist Women
923 Mokapu Blvd. / Kailua, HI 96734 USA