Mission

Dhamma is the greatest treasure.

A person who has Dhamma is never lonely,  but full of strength, knowledge, awareness, and happiness!

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A THERAVADAN BUDDHIST HERMITAGE

Sunnataram California Meditation Monastery


A Federal Nonprofit 501(c)(3) Corporation
Federal Tax Identification Number

EIN: 95-4496818


Phra Ajahn Yantra Amaro Bhikkhu   


Born on October 14th 1951 in the Paakpanang district in the southern province of Nakorn Sithammaraj—where Buddhism from Sri Lanka was first established in Thailand—he was the youngest of 7 children. His name is Phra Winai La-Ongsuwan.

After completing his secondary education in his home town, he moved to Bangkok for further studies and worked in the city. While living there, he observed the confusion caused by constant striving for material things in order to maintain life. Owing to his innate wisdom, he realized the impermanence of life—seeing the appearance and disappearance of all worldly phenomena. With his virtues and perfections highly developed, he made a strong determination to abandon the confusion of worldly life and took to the life of an ascetic or Yogi, in search of Truth.

As a Yogi, clad in white robes, he took to the Eight Precepts and lived a life of solitude. He frequented forests, mountains and caves, and cultivated mindfulness of breathing (Anapanasati). Dwelling in these natural settings, his mind was strengthened. He saw the benefits of being in unspoiled nature, and how it aided him in the purification of his mind.

In 1974 he returned to his birthplace, where he was ordained on the full moon day of Vesak, as Phra Winai Amaro Bhikkhu. He was later revered as Phra Ajahn Yantra Amaro Bhikkhu. After a brief stay in his home town, which enabled him to teach the Dhamma to his relatives and friends, he continued to travel on foot, moving from place to place and even crossing the Thai border to Burma.

In 1985—having walked and taught throughout the length and breadth of Thailand—Phra Ajahn Yantra spent his Rains Retreat in the forest of Kanchanaburi-where the Sunnataram Forest Monastery was later established.

In April 1986, Phra Ajahn Yantra was invited on a Dhamma Tour to the western world. Since then, he has travelled and taught in various parts of Europe, England, the United States of America and Australia. He travels out of compassion to spread the pure Dhamma.

Journey to the West