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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Mae Chee Kaew, The Life of a Buddhist Nun in Thailand

Bhikkhu Silaratano (Ajahn Dick) is a senior western student of Luangta Maha Boowa and now resides in a forest temple in Loei, in northeast Thailand.
This book not only gives an insight into life in Northeast Thailand through the 1900s but into the history of Khammathana Dhutanga Buddhism during the time it was being formed in Isaan. Reading about the teaching of Ajahn Sao and Mun and the impact they had on simple villagers in the forest and hills of the area is inspiring. We experience the life of an ordinary,uneducated Phu Thai girl who goes on to realize the ultimate truth and escape suffering in her lifetime. We see her interaction with her teacher Luangta Maha Boowa from the 1950s till her death in 1991.
The writer of the book, a senior student of Luangta Maha Boowa brings an insight and understanding that an ordinary author, no matter how gifted, could bring to this story. His understanding of the teaching and of his teacher bring a perspective rarely seen in any book.
If you are interested in Buddhism, life in Northeast Thailand in the 1900s, Phu Thai, and the mind, this is the book you have to read. It is simply written, with no pretension,but can give rise to the desire for each and everyone of us to escape samsara.
This and many other Dhamma books is available, for free, in PDF format at Forest Dhamma.