Ajahn Munindo

Ajahn Munindo

Ajahn Munindo (born Keith Morgan in 1951, in the town Te Awamutu, New Zealand) is a Theravada Buddhist monk, teacher in the Theravadin tradition of the forest monks of Thailand and the abbot of Aruna Ratanagiri, a monastery located at Harnham in Northumberland, England. He has been an ordained bhikkhu for more than 30 years, and is one of the senior bhikkhus in Ajahn Chah’s community.

Biography

He first encountered Buddhism at the age of 19 years. It made a significant impact on him and on a visit to Australia in 1972, he had an opportunity to attend a meditation retreat in Nimbin led by Ajahn Khantipalo.

After a period living on an alternative community (Narada) at Mullumbimby he left Australia in 1973 with the intention of traveling to Japan. He taught English for a while in Bangkok and there met some Western monks from Wat Bovoronives, where he eventually requested initial ordination as a samanera in 1974. He later received upasampada there from Phra Somdet Ñānasamvara in May 1995, and spent his first Vassa with Ajahn Tate at Wat Hin Mark Peng, on the Laotian border.

After a period in a Bangkok hospital with serious health problems, he met Ajahn Sumedho, and went to Wat Pah Nanachat, which had begun a few months earlier. He was re-ordained at Wat Nong Pah Pong by Ajahn Chah in 1975.

Partly because of ill-health he returned to New Zealand for six months in 1979. During his time there, interest grew in having monks living locally on a more permanent basis.

In 1980 with Ajahn Chah’s blessing he traveled to England to join the fledging community at Chithurst; three years later, he was given the responsibility of establishing a vihara in Devon, in the southwest of England. In 1987 he returned for another two years at Chithurst Monastery before moving in 1991 to Harnham - Aruna Ratanagiri Monastery in Northumberland where he is presently abbot.

Teaching

His talks are characterized by an encouragement to trust in an awareness that is, here-and-now, whole body-mind and non-judgmental; sometimes referred to as "source-oriented" practice, contrasting it to "goal-oriented" striving. “Patiently allowing utterly frustrating dilemmas to be present in our here-and-now, judgment-free awareness – this is the path of purification.” He also regularly reminds students of the task we in the West share of translating the forms of the inherited tradition into what is genuinely meaningful and workable. Within the context of the Theravadin Buddhist tradition he offers reflections and practices that aim at providing a supportive framework to hold awareness in its place, investing it with the strength needed to undertake its transformative work.

There are two books of collected talks by Ajahn Munindo called, "A Gift of Well-being" and "Unexpected Freedom" as well as a new rendering of the Dhammapada, titled "A Dhammapada for Contemplation". All books are available for free distribution (see Aruna Publications).

He has also initiated and overseen the following websites for free distribution of Dhamma teachings from the community of Ajahn Chah -

See also

External Links

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