Thubten Chodron is an American Tibetan Buddhist nun and a central figure in reinstating the Bhikkhuni (tib. Gelongma) ordination of women. She is a student of H. H. XIVth Dalai Lama, Tsenzhap Serkong Rinpoche, Thubten Zopa Rinpoche and other Tibetan masters.
Born in 1950, she grew up in a "non-religious" Jewish family near Los Angeles, California, United States and earned her B.A. in History, University of California at Los Angeles in 1971. While doing graduate work in Education, she taught elementary school.
She took a course with Ven. Lama Yeshe and Ven. Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 1975, inspiring her to study and practice Tibetan tradition at their monastery in Nepal.
In 1977, she received Sramanerika (novice) ordination, and in 1986, she travelled to Taiwan to receive the full Bhikshuni ordination.
She has studied and practiced Buddhism of the Tibetan tradition extensively, in India and Nepal, and for three years at Dorje Pamo Monastery in France.
She has held several significant posts, including Director of the spiritual program at Lama Tzong Khapa Institute, Italy for two years, Resident Teacher at Amitabha Buddhist Centre in Singapore, and ten years as Spiritual Director and Resident Teacher at Dharma Friendship Foundation in Seattle.
She has written numerous articles and books, such as Open Heart, Clear Mind; Buddhism for Beginners; Taming the Mind; Working with Anger; How to Free Your Mind: Tara the Liberator; and Cultivating a Compassionate Heart: The Yoga Method of Chenrezig.
Ven. Chodron is known for her work in re-establishing the Bhikshuni lineage, cultivating interfaith dialogue, creating Dharma outreach in prisons, and teaching the Dharma worldwide.
Her teaching emphasizes practical application of Buddhist practices in daily life and she is respected for making them easily understood and practiced by Westerners.
Ven. Chodron is a co-organizer of Life as a Western Buddhist Nun, an international conference of Western Buddhist nuns.
She was also a crucial participant in the 1993 and 1994 Western Buddhist teachers conferences with H. H. XIVth Dalai Lama and was instrumental in the creation of the 2007 International Congress on Buddhist Women's Role in the Sangha.
She is a member of the Committee of Western Bhikshunis and attends the annual gatherings of Western Buddhist Monastics in the USA.
She is founder and Abbess of Sravasti Abbey, a Buddhist monastery near Newport, Washington.
- Open Heart, Clear Mind. Paperback 224 pages; Publisher: Snow Lion Publications; (November 25, 1990)
- What Color is Your Mind?. Paperback 192 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (June 25, 1993)
- Transforming the Heart: The Buddhist Way to Joy and Courage. Paperback 228 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (January 25, 1999)
- Taming the Monkey Mind. Paperback 189 pages; Publisher:Heian International; (July 1999)
- Buddhism for Beginners. Paperback 160 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (February 25, 2001)
- Working with Anger. Paperback 170 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (October 25, 2001)
- Taming the Mind. Paperback 230 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (September 25, 2004)
- How to Free Your Mind: Tara the Liberator. Paperback 224 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (April 25, 2005)
- Cultivating a Compassionate Heart: The Yoga Method of Chenrezig. Paperback 155 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (April 25, 2006)
- Guided Meditations on the Stages of the Path. Paperback 154 pages; Publisher:Snow Lion Publications; (October 25, 2007)