Welcome, good lady; you are not unwelcome. The wise come this way...
-- The Buddha to Sujata Theri, Therigatha
Welcome to this site. We hope that you enjoy it, and find many good things being here. Our goal is to support and uplift one another, as sangha. We particulary aim to do this for the pillar of the Buddhist women's monastic community - the Bhikkhuni Sangha. We believe that having this pillar strong and sound will strengthen the entire Fourfold Assembly of the Buddha.
Amongst the 30 or so monasteries, temples and meditation centers in the Northern California in which the monastic Sangha of South and Southeast Asian Theravadan traditions dwell, Dhammadharini Vihara was the first women's monastery. Since its opening at the beginning of the Summer Vassa-period in the year 2005, the Vihara offered the requisites of shelter, almsfood, robes and medicines to bhikkhunis from both Eastern and Western backgrounds, hailing from America, Germany, Burma, Sri Lanka and Thailand. In addition it supported samaneris (female novices), given food and shelter to anagarikas (8 and 10 precept nuns and postulants), and provided temporary monastic retreat opportunities to numerous laywomen.
The Vihara provided ongoing, local opportunities for Bay Area Buddhists to express the spirit of generosity and develop good conditions through sharing with and supporting the Monastic Sangha in America. It also especially provides for the blessings and benefits of the presence of dedicated female monastics within our local community, what neighbors have called "a presence of peace."
With the offering of land for a women's monastic hermitage on the Sonoma Coast in the year 2008 and the offering of a wing at the Bodhi House from 2009 until 2012, what began with the Dhammadharini Vihara in old town Niles district of Fremont continues to change and grow. Our rustic off-grid hermitage was complemented with the 2013 opening of a rented space for the Dhammadharini Vihara in Santa Rosa. Together on a daily basis they provide the opportunity for contact between the women's monastic community and those in the lay community who feel supported, inspired and uplifted by their practice and presence.
After ten years in rented or donated spaces, the Dhammadharini Support Foundation offered a permanent, owned monastery in 2016, for our women's monastic community to put down roots. It is located at the northern edge of the San Francisco Bay area, at the western foot of Sonoma Mountain, accessible for Dhamma teaching & alms round. It is a space of refuge, sanctuary & practice for those inspired to fully live the monastic path; where aspirants can explore monastic life, learn, train & ordain; where lay friends of the Sangha can visit or stay for periods of immersion, sanctuary & service.