Emerging spiritual interests in his early teens led Bhante Sathi to be ordained as a novice monk (bhikku) at age 19 in the Theravada tradition in his native country of Sri Lanka. After 3 years of education and training under Wattegama Dhammawasa Maha Thera at Sri Subhodaranaya International Bhikku Center, Sri Lanka, he received higher ordination as a fully ordained monk. As a monk, he taught meditation and insight practices and counseled people from many walks of life using Buddhist teachings.
Invitations from people interested in meditation led to Bhante expanding his teaching to Europe, Canada and the United States.
In 1999 he became a resident monk at the Great Lakes Buddhist Vihara in Southfield Michigan and traveled around the US and Canada teaching meditation and mindfulness practices, the teachings and philosophy of Buddha (Dhamma), and leading retreats.
In 2003 he made Minnesota his home where, with the support of friends, he founded Triple Gem of the North in Mankato, which he made his residence. He became a US citizen, and traveled the state sharing his knowledge and training in Buddha’s teachings, meditation and mindful living. He has shared his wisdom, led retreats and given talks at various Minnesota locations including:
- Meditation Teacher at Chanhassen Public Library, Chanhassen, MN
- Visiting teacher at The Marsh, Minnetonka MN
- Meditation Teacher at Carlton Collage, Northfield, MN
- Meditation Teacher at Gustavus Adolphus Collage, St Peter MN
- Guiding teacher at Triple Gem of the North, Mankato, MN
- Guiding teacher at Chaska Mindfulness Center
- Teacher and speaker at several other Twin Cities Area locations
Responding to invitations, Bhante Sathi has planted many seeds of Buddha’s teachings across the United States from which several have blossomed into centers started by Bhante Sathi:
- Founder and Guiding Teacher Of Triple Gem Of the North, Mankato, MN
- Founder of Oklahoma Buddhist Vihara, OK
- Founder and Guiding Teacher of Mindfulness Center, Chaska, MN
- Founder and Guiding Teacher of Mindfulness Center, Boulder, CO
- Founding Member of Nathanial Meditation Center, FL
Bhante Sathi has a particular interest in what is common to all traditions and all schools of Buddhism, particularly regarding the practice of meditation. Since establishing himself in Minnesota, Bhante dreamt of opening a meditation center where people of all traditions could come together and practice Dhamma and meditation.
Bhante Mihintala Kamalasiri
Bhante Mihintala [Missaka] Kamalasiri is a guided meditation teacher, primarily focusing on Vipassana techniques sourced from the Buddhist Sutras. He believes this path will arm every sentient being against life’s different challenges.
In 1970, Bhante Missaka Kamalasiri was born in Mihintale, Sri Lanka, near the site where the Buddhist monk Mahinda and King Devanampiyatissa inaugurated the presence of Buddhism on this small island nation.
He has held a special interest in meditation since childhood. He started his practice under the guidance of Venerable Ananda Maitriya Maha Nayaka Thero. While there, he also received guidance from the renowned Dhamma teacher, Godwin Samararathne.
When he was only 14-years-old, Bhante received his novice ordination from his teacher, Balangoda Anandamaitrie, a well-known Sri Lankan Buddhist monk, who many considered a Bodhisattva. From there, he continued his training and education at the Vegirikanda Meditation Center and Gnanalankara Bhikkhu training centre in Peradeniya. He earned his higher education at the Sangaraja Monks Training School in Kandy and Vidyodaya, Colombo.
For three years, Bhante Kamalasiri lived in the Himalayan Mountains, researching Vajrayana and Hindu meditation techniques. He visited the Shivananda Ashram numerous times. Accounts of those visits were documented in a Sinhala language book titled, Mihidugiren Himagirata.
For a while, he practiced meditation in the caves of the Yelmo Mountains, where the Tibetan saint, Yogi Milarepa, once practiced. Bhante also spent some time at the Tusita Meditation Center.
Positions: From 1986 until 2008 he was the teacher of the Dhamma School in Peradeniya, and taught for a couple of years at the Bhikkhu Training College in Peradeniya. He was the coordination secretary in the Ministry of Religious Affairs, the wise secretary of the Kandy District Committee of Buddhist Authority, adviser for The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry, and the adviser for the documentary “2550 Years of Buddhism in Sri Lanka”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oorjkuY1e2c
He was also a part of the Apprenticeship Program organized by the State of Department of the United States, a member of the Board of Trustee for the National Environmental Forum and the adviser for the same committee that issued the Bank of Ceylon coin.
Publishings: Bhante has written 7 books in Sinhala:
1. Minissu -“Humans”
2. Aprakata Bauddha Lokaya- “Unknown Buddhist World“
3. Heladiwata Wasiyathiwarayano, Sikim Mahinda The Sikkim Mahinda – “Monk who from from the Himalayas to Sri Lanka”
4. Mihindu Giren Hima Girata – “From Minithale to Himalaya” National Literature Award Winner
5. Baudda Ahillaha Dakma – “The Buddhist World and Vision”
6. Asa Taru Saha Mama – “The Sky, The Stars and Me”
He’s had many published articles in newspapers and magazines in Sri Lanka and Australia, and also has spoken for radio and television.
Meditation Teachings out of Sri Lanka:
Bhante has taught in Singapore, Indonesia, Australia, India, Nepal, China, England and Italy and the United States.