Monday, November 03, 2008

Ordination in Colchester, UK

The Three Jewels of Buddhism, displayed on the Kesa received by members of the Western Buddhist Order on their ordinationOn Sunday October 26th Dave Whiting from Colchester, UK, became Ksantivajra.

His new name means "He who is a diamond or thunderbolt of patience, or forbearance". It is Sanskrit, and is spelt with a dot under the 's' and a macron over the first 'a', its anglicised spelling is Kshantivajra.

His Private Preceptor was Satyaraja and his Public Preceptor Mahamati.


For those interested to know more about the WBO’s system of public and private preceptors, we reproduce here a section from Tiratanaloka’s ‘Handbook’ for those who have requested ordination. They say -

"The private preceptor

"As you continue to deepen your understanding of going for refuge and the F/WBO, you will naturally develop friendships with people who are in the Order and at some point it is likely to become clear that a particular Dharmacharini might become your private preceptor. You can ask any Dharmacharini who has been in the Order at least 10 years to take on this responsibility in relation to your own ordination process. Within the WBO, there is a specific consultation process by which Order members can become private preceptors. This involves everyone in the Order having the opportunity to comment to the person in question on their suitability to take on this responsibility. If the person you ask to be your preceptor has not been through this process, they make undertake to do so when you ask them. If they have already been agreed as a private preceptor then they can take on the responsibility, usually with the agreement of their chapter, if they feel able to do so.

"Again, there is nothing ‘set in stone’ about who should or should not become your preceptor, but it is often helpful to wait until you have naturally developed a good connection with someone before asking them, as it will be a very significant and lasting relationship. It is sometimes also the case that the circumstances of your relationship change over time and you may both agree that it is more appropriate for another Dharmacharini to be your preceptor.

"When you and a Dharmacharini have agreed that she should become your preceptor, then she will be responsible at some point for proposing you as being ready for ordination. This will probably involve gathering information from a number of people in the Order who know you and who also have a sense that your going for refuge is effective and you are ready to join the Order. When this happens, your preceptor will pass the proposal to the College of Public Preceptors.

"The public preceptor

"The Public Preceptors are a worldwide body of senior Order Members who are responsible for overseeing the process of entry into the Order. Other responsibilities that they have include the appointing of private and public preceptors and carrying out public ordinations.

"When your private preceptor proposes that you are ready to be ordained, then someone within the College of Public Preceptors will undertake to be your public preceptor. You may well know this person, but it is unlikely that you will have as close a relationship with them as you do with your private preceptor. It is the public preceptor’s responsibility to ensure that all relevant information has been checked and to follow up anything which she is not clear about in relation to readiness for ordination. Once she is satisfied that everything is complete, she will make a recommendation to other public preceptors who all have to agree that you should join the Order.

"Then at the time of your ordination, your private preceptor will witness your effective going for refuge and your public preceptor will welcome you into the Order".

Tiratanaloka ( ) is the FWBO’s UK retreat centre dedicated to helping women prepare for Ordination into the Western Buddhist Order. Padmaloka ( is the equivalent for men in the UK; they too have a handbook which can be obtained by emailing them.



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