FutureDharma/ India Dhamma Trust is proud to support 26 members of the Ordination Team in India, with the team being our largest beneficiary, receiving £92k in funding each year. With an average cost of just £3,538 to support an Indian Ordination Team member each year, this support makes a profound impact, changing lives; both for the team members, and for those mitras training for Ordination. Each member of the team dedicates their time to work with people in some of the most challenging and impoverished areas in India.
Today, we delve into the inspiring story of one such person.
Shakyavajri is the youngest Dharmacharini in India, ordained in January 2022. Hailing from Nagpur, Maharashtra, India, she practices with her family, all actively involved in Triratna. However, life hasn’t always been as promising for Shakyavajri. She has triumphed over incredibly difficult circumstances, being born into a Scheduled Caste (ex-untouchable) family, and having a father who struggled with alcoholism. Her family’s poverty meant that they often grappled with food scarcity.
In the face of these challenging conditions, Shakyavajri displayed remarkable resilience, working and studying diligently to qualify in animation while supporting herself through her studies. Her daily routine involved getting up early to complete household chores by 6 AM, working in a photo studio, returning home to study, and ending her day around midnight.
In 2007, an unexpected turning point occurred. Shakyavajri’s father encountered the Dhamma on a day retreat led by Subhuti, and within a few days, he decided to give up alcohol. Later her father met Aryaketu, the Director of Aryaloka Computer Education and spoke highly of Shakyavajri’s skills and hard work. This led to Shakyavajri becoming one of the first Young Indian’s Futures students.
Later, Shakyavajri had a life-changing opportunity to meet Bhante during her visit to Europe, a moment that inspired her to seek Ordination. Her training for Ordination (made possible by the tireless efforts of the Indian Ordination Team) not only deepened her understanding of the Dharma but also transformed her from a shy girl into a confident young woman. Today, she serves as a lecturer in Buddhist Studies at Nagaloka while pursuing a Ph.D. in the same field at Nagpur University.
This journey was not easy and Shakyavajri encountered much prejudice along the way. But undaunted, she wholeheartedly embraced Dharma study and practice, overcoming numerous obstacles.
When you donate to FutureDharma, you provide essential support for someone like Shakyavajri and others just like her.
Thank you for being part of this incredible journey.
If you would like to support others like Shakyavajri and our projects within India please give today.