Tuesday Online: Ayya Anandabodhi & Matty Weingast: Poems Inspired by the Early Buddhist Nuns

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Ayya Anandabodhi and Matty Weingast will be reading from The First Free Women: Poems of the Early Buddhist Nuns. The evening will begin with a brief reading and guided meditation. Then there will be a period of open discussion interspersed with more readings and Q&A. We invite you to come and hear these poems, inspired by the voices of the awakened nuns. Everyone is welcome, whether you have a deep familiarity with the Therigatha or want nothing at all to do with poetry.


Takes place on Zoom!

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Meeting ID: 882 6632 0362
Password: metta4all

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Meeting ID: 882 6632 0362
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More about the book

The Therigatha (“Verses of the Elder Nuns”) is the oldest collection of known writings from Buddhist women and the earliest collections of women’s literature. Composed around the time of the Buddha, the collection contains verses by the first Buddhist nuns detailing everything from their disenchantment with their prescribed roles in society to their struggles on the path to enlightenment to their spiritual realizations. Among the nuns, a range of voices are represented, including former wives, women who lost children, women who gave up their wealth, and a former prostitute.

In this poetic re-envisioning of each poem, Weingast infuses each verse with vivid language that is not found in other translations. Simple yet profound, the nuance of language highlights the beauty in each poem and resonates with modern readers exploring the struggles, grief, failures, doubts, and ultimately, moments of profound insight of each woman. Weingast breathes fresh life into this ancient collection of poetry, offering readers a rare glimpse of Buddhism inspired by the spiritual literature and poetry of the first female disciples of the Buddha.

“A must-read for all women and those who love them. This inspiringly poetic translation of timeless wisdom reminds us of our freedom and how we can live free together.” —Ruth King

“Honest. Courageous. Inspiring. These reflections can’t help but touch the hearts of all who read them.” —Sharon Salzberg

“These are fresh, powerful, poetic translations that bring our ancient wise women to life. Let their beautiful songs of freedom inspire your own heart.” —Jack Kornfield



Everyone is welcome. No registration. Donations are appreciated.

Please visit our Teachers Page for biographies and photos of our speakers.

Insight Meditation South Bay offers two weekly meditation programs. On Tuesdays, we meet in Mountain View for our drop-in weekly program of meditation and teachings.  On Thursdays, we meet in Saratoga for our Dhamma Classroom, which offer a series of structured courses with registration, and periodic drop-in practice events.

Our Tuesday evening program usually includes a sitting meditation and Dhamma talk. The principal teacher is Shaila Catherine and guest speakers are featured regularly. Thematic series are periodically presented, but whether or not a topic has been advertised in advance, Shaila or a guest teacher will lead the sitting and offer teachings. See also weekly sitting.

Newcomers are always welcome. To help newcomers get acquainted with mindfulness meditation and IMSB, a senior member or teacher offers a beginner’s orientation beginning at 6:30 on the first Tuesday of each month.

IMSB relies upon the generosity of participants to support our teachers and cover organizational expenses. Dana is a word in the ancient Pali language that describes donations, offerings and generosity. Two bowls will be available at an event to practice dana for the teacher and IMSB. We encourage you to give joyfully and generously, according to your resources and means. IMSB is a 501(c) (3) organization. All donations are tax deductible as permitted by law.

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