SEM?s Public Lecture 18th
The Transformation of Self and World
in Sangharakshita?s Approach to Engaged Buddhism
By Dhammachari Lokamitra
On 7th January 2012, 13.00-17.00 hrs
Venue: Meeting room, 2th floor,
Buddhadasa Indapanno Archives, Bangkok
13.00 ? 13.30 hrs Registration
13.30 ? 14.00 hrs Video presentation on ?Work on Dalits or the Untouchables in India?*
*(to be confirmed)
14.00 ? 14.15 hrs Opening remarks by Mr. Surasi Kosolnavin, President of Sathirakoses Nagapradipa Foundation (SNF)
14.15 ? 14.45 hrs Report on SEM programme activities (Video presentation)
14.30 ? 14.45 hrs Introduction of Keynote Lecturer by Ajarn Sulak Sivaraksa
14.45 ? 16.15 hrs Keynote lecture on ?The Transformation of Self and World in Sangharakshita?s Approach to Engaged Buddhism?
By Dhammachari Lokamitra
Lapapan Suppamantra (interpreter)
16.15 ? 16.45 hrs Questions and Answers
16.45 ? 17.00 hrs Closing remarks by Ajarn Sulak Sivaraksa
Dharmachari Lokamitra was ordained as a member of the Western Buddhist Order in 1974 by Sangharakshita in London. After some time as chairman of the North London Centre of the FWBO, he moved to India in1978, where for many years he helped to initiate, develop and guide Buddhist activities under Triratna Bauddha Mahasangha (TBM) and social projects under the name of Bahujan Hitay. TBM now runs over forty Buddhist teaching centres in India including two large meditation retreat centres at Bhaja near Pune, and Bor Dharan, near Nagpur. Bahujan Hitay has established over twenty hostels for children who otherwise would find it hard to pursue their school education. It has also started extensive health and education community projects in the slums of Pune, Nagpur, Mumbai and other places. This work has taken place largely amongst Dalits, many of whom converted to Buddhism under guidance of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar.
Since 1998 he has been involved in developing the Jambudvipa Trust in Pune. Jambudvipa, the ancient Buddhist name for the Indian sub-continent, represents the transformation of society and culture through ethical and spiritual values. The trust runs the Manuski project and network, which encourages Dalits to take responsibility for transforming their situation. The Trust also runs a hostel for Dalit girls affected by the earthquake of 2001 in Gujarat and two hostels for Dalit children affected by the Tsunami near Chennai.
He has been developing and guiding the Nagarjuna Institute at Nagaloka in Nagpur, the main activity of which is a one year residential course in Buddhist studies and practice for newly converted Buddhists from all over India. In the last 9 years over 600 students from 22 different States have benefitted from this training, and constitute an all India network, transcending caste and region.
Most recently Lokamitra has been involved in the initiation of Prabuddha Bharat Network to bring into communication and support people from all over India, who are inspired by the approach of Dr. Ambedkar to Buddhism and social transformation.