Speaker Series: Meditation, Compassion, and Social Action with Bhante Wimala
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Bhanta Wimala Bio:
Bhante Wimala’s numerous humanitarian projects, many of which he personally supervises, include: restoring entire villages in Sri Lanka ravaged by tsunami and over thirty years of civil war, earthquake relief in Haiti, and typhoon relief in Bangladesh and the Philippines. He personally oversees countless projects across the globe, primarily in Africa and Asia, to restore eyesight to the poor and underserved, bring medical supplies and wheelchairs where there were none, educate youth, build orphanages, schools, classrooms and hospitals, and bring hope to the incarcerated.
Since 1986, Bhante Wimala has been the Chairperson and Spiritual Director of Triple Gem Buddhist Society, the Center for Conscious Evolution in Princeton, New Jersey, USA. He is also the Founding Director and Spiritual Advisor of Prison Ministries which provides educational and support programs in many state prisons in the USA.
Bhante Wimala served as the Chief Sangha Nayaka of the USA and Canada. He received this appointment as the Chief Sangha Nayaka in 1994 by the Council of Monks of the Samastha Amerapura Sangha Sabha of Sri Lanka. In May of 2010, Bhante was reinstated as the head monk of the USA. He was also appointed as the Chief Sangha Nayaka of the Czech Republic and Kenya.
In Europe, Bhante is the founder and spiritual teacher of the Samadhi Buddhist Meditation Centre in Tupadly (Prague), and the founder of the Lotus Buddhist Center in Prague, Czech Republic. Bhante is also the Chief Monk and Spiritual Director of Nairobi Buddhist Temple, Nairobi, Kenya.
Bhante Wimala is the recipient of many awards for his peace efforts and humanitarian activities, including the Global Peace Award in 2007 from the Peace Center in the United States. In 2008, Bhante received the Ambassador for Peace Award, offered by the Universal Peace Federation, an international and inter-religious federation for world peace. In 2009, Bhante Wimala was awarded the Health Services Excellence Award from the Ministries of Health and Resettlement of the government of Sri Lanka. In May of 2010, the Upcountry Amarapura Supreme Monks Council of Sri Lanka awarded Bhante the prestigious “Samadutha” Ambassador of Peace Award.
In the introduction to Bhante's book Lessons of the Lotus, His Holiness the Dali Lama says of Bhante: “Bhante Wimala's heartfelt concern for the suffering and the simple remedies he draws from the Buddha's teachings will be a source of strength for everyone confused by the pressures of modern life."