Khandro Thrinlay Chodon
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winter hermitage

Sani Valley


Sani Nunnery

Khachodling Nunnery - Zanskar
The sacred land of Zanskar is renowned for its holy sites and spiritual power. It has attracted great meditators since early Buddhist times. Naropa realised enlightenment in the caves at Dzongkul then flew to Sani where, due to the unshakeable devotion of local Zanskaris, he left his own hair in a spontaneously emerged statue replica of himself. Guru Rinpoche meditated on the charnel grounds at Sani village then in a remote cave above. Most auspiciously, our very own Khachodling female hermitage is perched on the site of an 18th century nunnery built by the distinguished yogi, Drupchen Ngawang Tsering.  On this site many great beings actualised the ultimate truth and to this day you can feel the power of their blessings.

Our Khachodling nuns have been living a life of purity and authentic simple practice on this site for over 15 years now.  They have accomplished a lot since the Nunnery began with the guidance, support and inspiration of Khandro Thrinlay Chodon.  They have built the gompa, simple communal kitchen and individual mud huts. They have built a sturdy stone-wall to keep out wandering animals and have planted 500 trees which will eventually create a lush habitat.  A greenhouse has been established to provide vegetables during the long harsh winters when crops can’t be grown and heavy snowfalls prevent access to outside food sources (even the path to the local village is snowbound!).  During the winters the nuns are engaged in intense Dharma practice and indoor crafts, while outdoor practical tasks are reserved for the summer.

The resourceful and enterprising nuns are developing projects that will help the nunnery become more self-sufficient. They’ve learnt how to build, market and sell solar lanterns; sell excess produce from the greenhouse to local townspeople and engage in basic carpet weaving.

Please help the Sani nuns rebuild their kitchen
However, one of the challenges they face in this remote location is global warming which is having a huge impact on the buildings in Zanskar. Basically the winters are becoming warmer and snowfall, which previously was dry and lightweight on the roofs, has now become heavy and wet even though not as much snow falls most years. The wet snow does not suit their traditional roofs which were simply made of twigs and hay. So now the roofs are collapsing and our Sani hermitage roofs are no exception. The existing meagre kitchen can no longer withstand the impact of snow and rain; it has caved in. So now the entire building needs to be replaced with a properly designed kitchen, storage and communal eating area, topped off by a sturdy roof construction that will resist wet and heavy snow.

Cost estimate to rebuild the kitchen is USD$25,000. We are seeking urgent donations to help fund this vital project.  The summer season is the only time to build and it must be commenced soon, before the winter sets in.

Please know that building costs in Zanskar are about double the usual Indian rates due to its remoteness. Many of the materials have to come from at least 20 hours of rugged drive away. There is no wood available to purchase in the Zanskar valley and carpenters are very expensive because there are so few in the area.

Smaller donations are also required as the nuns are desperately short of basic kitchen utensils.  So please consider contributing towards the following items so that the nuns can give their battered old pots the flick! A boiler, 2 rice cookers, one very large cooking pot, good thermos flasks and dinner plates are all needed.

Download further information here (1.1MB pdf)

Either by
1. Secure credit card on khachodling website by going to this link
Notate 1c Rebuild Sani Kitchen

2. Direct deposit to Australia
Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Name of Account: Khachodling Incorporated

BSB/Branch Number: 062-171

Account Number : 1021 5851
Swiftcode: CTBAAU2S

Description on transfer: include "your surname"

Important Note
When making a bank transfer please be sure to note your surname and specific purpose number (if applicable) on the transaction.
Then, after you have completed the deposit,
please email us at telling us your name, the date and amount of your donation and the specific fund number (if applicable).
This will ensure we are able to track and confirm your payment.

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