Why are we building the Vivatta temples in buddhabhumi (India) and tambapaṇṇidīpa
(Sri Lanka) and Vatta temples in other countries worldwide?
(Sri Lanka) and Vatta temples in other countries worldwide?
Upon seriously continuous dhamma sikkha (study) for more than 40 years, we come to realize a lot of things.
- What did Buddha enlighten? What did Buddha teach?
- What are the differences between the good and bad persons as judged by Buddha's teachings?
- Buddha has never appointed anyone to be a new leader (satthā), but Buddha instead stated that 84,000 dhammakhandha of Tipitaka would represent Buddha after buddhaparinibbāna. Are the teachings of people nowadays following Buddha's teachings?
- According to Buddha's teachings, there is not only one citta and one kāya, but 121 citta, 52 cetasika, and 28 rūpa.
- How do we know if life after death exists?
- Is it possible not to be born, old, ill, and dead?
- Do hell, heaven, and brahma, which are invisible, exist? How can we know their existence?
- From Buddha's teachings, there are six levels of heaven. How do we get there?
- Why are some people born rich? Why are some born poor?
- What makes manussa (humans) different from animals?
- How do Buddha's teachings change us internally? What is it like when one is saying that Buddha's teachings improve the inside of us?
The Origin in Brief of “ Vaṭṭa Bhikkhunīpatimokkha DhammaTipiṭaka” Temple
Bungka, Lerng Noktha, Yasodharā Province, Thailand
Following the study of Buddha’s teaching of 84,000 dhammakhandha (composing of 21,000 suttanta; 21,000 vinaya; and 42,000 abhidhamma), the Sikkhā Dhamma Society at Thailand’s Ministry of Industry was established in April of 2526 B.E (1983). Ever since the early days of the community, our society has always welcomed diverse groups of bhikkhu, bhikkhunī, upāsaka, and upāsikā from various temples in different parts of Thailand and many countries worldwide such as Germany, France, England, Norway, Russia, Australia, India, Bhutan, China, Sri Lanka, Laos, etc. to deliver dhamma recitation and study.
The Sikkhā Dhamma Society has been led by Tipiṭaka Dhammacāriya dhammapāla theravāda balabodhi Suchart Nak-On. Dhammacāriya Suchart Nak-On had previously practiced all kinds of meditation such as those that offered extreme physical challenges; for example, meditating extensively for 22 hours straight per day for period of 3 years, and other types of meditation that required strict discipline of your body postures and movements (specifically walking, sitting and lying down) every day between 3 to 7 continuous hours. With 30 years of full-on experience in all types of meditative practices from various gurus, Dhammacāriya Suchart came to the realization that there was more to achieving the ultimate goal of nibbāna. Although having followed his ‘teachers’ instructions precisely and received high praises, he discovered that this approach had come to a dead end.
Something was missing, he wondered. Dhammacāriya Suchart then suddenly came to the realization that he had done everything, except studying what the Buddha actually taught, from Tipiṭaka. From that moment on, Dhammacāriya Suchart decided to abandon everything he previously knew and reset his mind by trying to understand the actual and profound meanings behind the Buddha’s words in order to attain lokuttara. With his extensive experience and qualifications, Dhammacāriya Suchart was invited to be the moderator for every Buddhist-related event at the Sikkhā Dhamma Society since its establishment. In 2535 B.E (1992). Dhammacāriya Suchart made one of his usual meditation trips to the North of Thailand, and it was this very trip that he discovered a glimpse of the Buddhist concept that he had always craved to understand, prompting him to seriously look into the Buddha’s actual teachings from Tipiṭaka, particularly “abhidhamma”.
In just a year later, Dhammacāriya Suchart started sharing his discoveries from Tipiṭaka to members of the Sikkhā Dhamma Society and officially opened the abhidhamma classes at the Ministry of Industry in 2536 B.E. (1993), starting from just once a year to eventually once a month. The abhidhamma classes regularly accommodated up to 200 bhikkhus as well as sāmaṇerī and paṇḍaraṅgapabbajata (nuns in white cloth). One of sāmaṇerī, later on, got ordained as a bhikkhunī named “Bhikkhunī Dhammamittā”.
Dhammacāriya Suchart offered Bhikkhunī Dhammamittā, saying that if she could memorize and recite the 311 bhikkhunīpāṭimokkha, without referring to the book, he would build her a temple as her proper residence. Once she completed full memorization of the 311 sīla in bhikkhunīpāṭimokkha, Dhammacāriya Suchart then sent his group members led by Dhammacāriya Pranee Nak-On to a village called Bungka, located in Lergn Noktha District of Yasodharā Province in Thailand, to assess a potential temple location. In the meantime, Dhammacāriya Suchart facilitated Bhikkhunī Dhammamittā to Sri Lanka, where she officially got accepted into the Bhikkhunī Saṅgha.
Since Bhikkhunī Dhammamittā was the world’s first bhikkhunī to have been able to recite the 311 bhikkhunīpāṭimokkha by pure memory, at least during this time, she was offered a particular name, following the influence of historical figures - “Vara Mahinda Arahanta Mahāthera” and “Vara Saṅghamittā Arahantatherī”. As a result, she received a new monkhood name “Paṭhamaloka”, meaning “World’s First”. Currently, she is now able to recite both 227 bhikkhupāṭimokkha and 311 bhikkhunīpāṭimokkha by pure memory.
The construction of the vaṭṭa (temple) offered to bhikkhunī started in 2553 B.E (2010). The vaṭṭa mahāvihāra’s architecture was specially designed by mahāupāsikā President Nongnooj Tanadumrongsak, along with the group’s vice presidents, as well as its theravavāda members. In the year 2556 B.E. (2013), the construction of the bhikkhunī temple reached its completion, and in honoring this achievement, a group of 109 ladies collectively decided to take part in the pabbajjā sāmaṇerī ordination led by upajjhāya and pavattinī from Sri Lanka.
With this in mind, the temple in Yasodharā was named after the first bhikkhunī ever to memorize the 311 bhikkhunīpāṭimokkha - “Vaṭṭa Bhikkhunīpatimokkha DhammaTipiṭaka”, designed to be World’s Bhikkhunī Center for the Sikkhā Buddhavacana 84,000 Dhammakhandha Group. This temple in Yasodharā province of Thailand welcomes bhikkhu and bhikkhunī from every part of the world, with open arms, to visit and study dhamma at any time. Vaṭṭa Bhikkhunīpatimokkha DhammaTipiṭaka has, by and large, finalized its development and currently covers nearly 20 acres of land.