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Women's Ordination

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Publication date20/05/2022
Host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Buddhist Practice
EditorsPaula Arai, Kevin Trainor
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780190632953
ISBN (Print)9780190632922
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The discussion about Buddhist women’s ordination in recent decades has focussed primarily on its legality and technical procedures by drawing from the stipulations in the Vinaya to assess the validity of restoring the bhikkhuni order in the Theravada and the Tibetan tradition. While Buddhist scholars pay more attention to the legal process of ordination in conferring a legitimate status to the candidate, the monastic practitioners focus on the ritual efficacy of ordination that validates their status change, which subsequently brings material support and endorsement from their own communities. In an attempt to explore doctrinal as well as socio-anthropological approaches to women’s ordination, this chapter discusses various forms of ordination that grant monastic status to Buddhist nuns, and pays special attention to their real life experiences both prior to and during ordination that have profound implication on their religious life.