Dharmacharya Ordination Program


In the 17 years since Ven. Pannavati Bikkhuni began her own work in learning and living the Dharma of the Noble Eightfold Path, she has enabled innumerable others to also find their own way to wisdom.

Beginning in November 2013, Venerable Pannavati worked with the first group of 28 yogis and yoginis who chose to take the next step in their own growth towards non-monastic ordination through the Dharmacharya Program. While held to a higher standard of conduct, knowledge and application, celibacy is NOT required. ‘Charya’ means exemplar. Venerable Pannavati's meaning for Dharmacharya is one who lives the Dharma or one who teaches Dharma by example. This program is for those who want to BE Dharma — not just teach it!,” says Pannavati. And, “In this diaspora, the non-monastic teaching-model is customary, accepted and useful.”

The latest group to study with Venerable Pannavati began their two year journey in February 2016.

Selection for inclusion in this highly personalized program will be determined by Venerable Pannavati based in part on the applicant’s responses to questions in the Application, along with a personal interview and references (not always required).

If you feel you are being led to undertake a deeper level of learning and growth along the Buddhist path with a commitment to be a refuge for others, you are invited to apply to join in this two-year odyssey of personal growth. Through individual communication, monthly group teleconferencing, video trainings and regional retreats, Ven. Pannavati and several guest teachers will be working with the chosen yogis in each class on an individualized student-teacher journey to bring them to the threshold of a new stage in their life’s spiritual work.

Those who successfully complete the Dharmacharya Program with Venerable will know with confidence where they are along the path and be able to guide others. As in all of her work throughout the USA and the world, Pannavati’s gift of the Dharma is freely offered. However, the program’s regional coordinators have determined that the costs to cover the technology, travel and administrative support for the program will come to approximately $100 to $150 per month or $1,200-$1,500 per year per student. Expenses involved in attending the regional retreats will be kept to $50 per person per day or less if at all possible.Dana will be accepted for the teachers at the retreats.

Thank you for your interest in the Buddhadharma and your commitment to your own personal and spiritual growth. You are leaving a legacy to the world, even as you leave samsara.

Your application could take up to a month to process.

Module 1 Year One
Unit 1 Lesson 1 - The Prison Of Life
Unit 2 Ānāpānasati, The Buddha's Liberation Hack - Lesson 2
Unit 3 Wilderness in the Heart - Lesson 3
Unit 4 Dharma of Cultivation Pt. 1 - Lesson 4
Unit 5 Dharma of Cultivation Pt. 2 - Lesson 5
Unit 6 The 37 Factors of Awakening - Lesson 6
Unit 7 The 37 Practices of All Buddhas’ Sons - Lesson 7
Unit 8 Deranged Faculties - Lesson 8
Unit 9 Comparing Traditions of Buddhism: Therevada, Mahayana, Zen, Vajrayana, Vipassana, and contemporary traditions - Lesson 9
Unit 10 4 Stages and 4 Fruits of Attainment - Lesson 10
Module 2 Year Two
Unit 1 The Buddha's Teaching on Karma and the 31 Planes of Existence - Lesson 11
Unit 2 The 5 Major and 5 Minor Vidyas - Lesson 12
Unit 3 To study Buddhism is to Study Ourselves - Lesson 13
Unit 4 In What Sense is Insight a Power - Lesson 14
Unit 5 Heartwood of the Bodhi Tree - Lesson 15
Unit 6 Applied Spirituality as Adapted from Swami Agnivesh - Lesson 16
Unit 7 Right Livelihood and Buddhist Economics - Lesson 17
Unit 8 Comparative Religion/Spiritual Ethics - Lesson 18
Unit 9 How to Start and Build a Sangha, or guidance on another self-chosen project - Lesson 19
Unit 10 Drive All Blames Into One - Lesson 20