Wednesday, February 29, 2012

India Tour part 2

Back in India Part2

 One of the highlights of my stay in Aurangabad was the novice ordination of my long time friend Dr. J.S. Sardar. I had met him in Aurangabad in 1974 when I was still a lay person. He was a student at the Milind College of Science. He was a Ambedkar Buddhist. That was the first time I had heard about the new Ambedkar Buddhist movement. Over all these years we have kept in contact. He had a wish to odain as a monk since he was young but the conditions were never right. Now, being a recently retired Professor of Chemistry, the time became right. He had been one of my main translators when teaching in Maharashtra. He wished to have his Pabbaja ordination under me. We held the ordination under the big Bodhi Tree on the campus of the Milind College. I gave him th name of, Ananda.

Novice Ordination of Dr. Sardar at Aurangabad

Ven. Vishuddhananda and Vimalkrti assist in ordination

Ven. Ananda's first meal in an alms bowl

I conducted a ten day retreat at the Buddha Caves Vihar at the foot of the Aurangabad Caves. About sixty people attended the whole retreat and others came to hear the Dhamma talks. During the retreat we climbed up the long staircase to the ancient caves to meditate and do some yoga.

Aurangabad caves

Climbing to Caves

View of Buddha Caves Vihara

Parrots on rock face of Caves

Bibi Ka Maqbarra--Taj Mahal replica at Aurangabad

Yoga in front of the caves

Meditating inside the Cave; Are the white spots Devas?

Main Shrine at the Vihar

Inaugrating the 10 day meditation retreat in the outdoor tent

Meditation retreat participants

Closing talk

Ven. Ananda translating talk

Offering traditional flower bouquet

To be continued