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Founder of Nepal’s First Hongwanji Buddhist Temple Hosting Three Big Island Presentations

Reverend Sonam Wangdi Bhutia, a Tibetan Monk, is the founder of Nepal’s first Hongwanji Buddhist temple, and has helped create a thriving new Buddhist community in Kathmandu. Rev. Bhutia will talk about his dramatic personal journey in three Hawai‘i Island locations on July 15 and 16, as part of the Buddhist Study Center’s 40-year-old summer education series.

Reverend Sonam Wangdi Bhutia

Presentations are free, and take place as follows: Saturday, July 15 at Kona Hongwanji at 12:30 p.m.; Sunday, July 16 at Pa‘auilo Hongwanji at 10 a.m.  and Puna Hongwanji at 2 p.m. Talks will be followed by time for questions and answers, and informal reception to meet Rev. Bhutia.

Raised in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition from age three, and advancing into its highest ranks, Bhutia took a different path at age 28, when he encountered the Pure Land tradition of Jodo Shinshu. Pure Land, a simplified school of Buddhist thought, began in India in the 2nd Century, and was refined by Shinran Shonin in the 12th Century, as Jodo Shinshu. The practice of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism focuses on faith, trust and a personal relationship with Amitabha Buddha, with the chanting of his name as an expression of gratitude.

Rev. Bhutia will also speak about how the story of the Buddha is resonating today with young adults in Nepal, the birthplace of Shakyamuni (Siddhartha Gautama Buddha).

The presentations are hosted by the Four Temples Association (Honoka‘a, Kamuela, Kohala and Pa‘auilo Hongwanji Buddhist Temples, www.honokaahongwanjibuddhisttemple.org), in partnership with the Buddhist Churches of America – Center for Buddhist Education, in association with Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii – Buddhist Studies Center, Midwest Buddhist Temple (Chicago), New York Buddhist Church, and American Buddhist Study Center.

For more information, and to RSVP, please contact Mayette Drake, phone and text 808-937-2901, email  ad31088@yahoo.com.