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Celebrating Women in the Plum Village tradition

In celebration of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day, we are delighted to share with you a selection of articles from our archives by treasured Dharma teachers who are women in the International Plum Village tradition:


Sister Chân Không

Sister Chân Không is the first fully-ordained monastic disciple of Zen Master Thích Nhất Hạnh, and the director of his humanitarian projects since the 1960’s. She has devoted her life to the development and practice of nonviolence grounded in the Buddhist precepts of non-killing and compassionate action. Read her books and read more about her on the Plum Village website.


Sister Chân Đức (Sister Annabel Laity, True Virtue)

Sister Chân Đức was the editor of The Mindfulness Bell for almost twenty years, and became the first Western European woman to be ordained as a nun by Thầy in 1988 in India. To read more about her, including Dharma talks, books, and more of her articles, click here.

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Sister Dang Nghiem (Sister D)

Sister Dang Nghiem, MD, was born in Vietnam during the Tet Offensive, lost her mother at the age of twelve, immigrated to the United States at the age of seventeen, earned a medical degree from the University of California San Francisco, and ordained a nun in 2000. For more about Sister Dang Nghiem, including her books, visit Parallax Press.

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Kaira Jewel Lingo

After growing up internationally in a residential spiritual community Kaira Jewel Lingo began practicing mindfulness in 1997, ordained as a nun in 1999 and was in robes for fifteen years. She is now a lay Dharma teacher, leading retreats in the US and internationally, offering mindfulness programs for families, educators and youth in schools, artists, activists, People of Color, as well as individual spiritual mentoring. Visit to learn more.

Valerie Brown

Valerie Brown, True Sangha Power, ordained in 2018 and transformed her twenty-year, high-pressure career as a lawyer-lobbyist into human-scale, social-equity-centered work, guiding leaders and organizations to foster greater understanding, authenticity, compassion, and trust. You can find more about her and her latest book, Hope Leans Forward, on her website.

Leslie Rawls

Leslie Rawls, True Realm of Awakening, co-founded and practices with the Charlotte Community of Mindfulness in North Carolina, US. She was ordained into the Order of Interbeing in 1995 and received Lamp Transmission from Thay in 2009. Leslie has worked in many roles to support The Mindfulness Bell: as the first Family Practice Section editor, managing editor, Sangha directory maintenance team member, and Caretaking Council member.

For more celebration of women in our International Plum Village Tradition, read Women in the Practice and Female Buddhas: A Revolution for Nuns in the Plum Village Tradition from the Thich Nhat Hanh Foundation.

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What is Mindfulness

Thich Nhat Hanh January 15, 2020

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