Renowned spiritual leader and socially engaged Buddhist monk, Venerable Bhikkhu Sanghasena, distributed prostheses and mobility aids to 1,000 disabled people as part of the third free mobility camp in Ladakh, northern India, at the beginning of June. The ceremony was co-hosted by the Mahabodhi International Meditation Center (MIMC) in Leh, in collaboration with the Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust, Mumbai, and Rotary International Districts 3141 and 3070, and was attended by the Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh, RK Mathur.
“The International Mahabodhi Meditation Center (MIMC) was established in 1986 and since then it has been providing various humanitarian services and initiatives, such as education, meditation, environmental initiatives and free medical services to the people of Ladakh,” said Ven. Bhikkhu Sanghasena said in a post shared with BDG. “Our Mahabodhi Karuna Charitable Hospital has provided exceptional medical services and support, as well as organizing on-campus and mobile medical camps, free of charge, in remote areas of Ladakh.
“MIMC and Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust, Mumbai have already organized two large scale orthopedic camps at Mahabodhi Karuna Charitable Hospital in 2012 and 2017. This year the third free mobility camp in Ladakh was again organized in MIMC on June 12. , with sponsorship from the Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust and Rotary International Districts 3141 and 3070. We have partnered to distribute free prostheses and aids, including leg braces, crutches, prostheses, wheelchairs and hearing aids, to more than 1,000 patients and people with disabilities.
Fri. Bhikkhu Sanghasena is the Spiritual Director of Mahabodhi International Meditation Center (MIMC) in Leh, Ladakh. He is also the founder of the Mahakaruna Foundation, the Save the Himalayas Foundation and a spiritual advisor to the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB).*
Lieutenant Governor Mathur expressed his gratitude for the contributions of Ven. Bhikkhu Sanghasena and the MIMC to disabled people in Ladakh. He also praised the MIMC for providing educational opportunities for underprivileged students in remote communities and for founding a care home for the destitute elderly.
In his address at the ceremony, Mathur emphasized the importance of welcoming and actively including people with disabilities and people with disabilities in society at large. He cited efforts by the Ladakh administration and local councils to integrate children with disabilities into mainstream schools, and called for the continued support of MIMC, as well as Rotary International and the Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust, for the benefit of all persons with disabilities in Ladakh. .
“During the Third Free Mobility Camp Ceremony, Certificates of Appreciation were presented to two particularly deserving MIMC students: Chunzin Angmo and Stanzin Chuskit, for their achievements in the fields of education and sports despite the challenges posed by their disability,” said Ven. Bhikkhu Sanghasena observed.
He added, “The Rotary International District 3141 Governor also laid the foundation stone for the Mahabodhi Himalayan High-Altitude Library. Additionally, we had the temporary installation of 20,000 books donated by the Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust, Mumbai, and the inauguration of the new Mahabodhi Boarding School Library by the hands of the dignitaries present.
Perched on the Tibetan plateau, Ladakh, which translates to the land of high passes, became India’s largest union territory in 2019 after the government reconstituted the former state of Jammu and Kashmir. Spread over some 59,146 mountainous square kilometers, much of which is parched and inhospitable, Ladakh’s culture and history are intertwined with those of Tibet, so much so that Ladakh is sometimes nicknamed “Little Tibet”.
Fri. Bhikkhu Sanghasena founded the Mahabodhi International Meditation Center (MIMC) in Leh, the joint capital of Ladakh, in 1986. He has since become an example of socially engaged Buddhism, launching numerous projects, events and initiatives, among them educational opportunities and shelter. for underprivileged children, empowerment and literacy programs for women and other socially disadvantaged groups, health care for the sick and needy, and a retirement home for the elderly and destitute. The CMIM has grown into an expanding campus that has become a hub for a multitude of socio-cultural and community programs.
There is more joy in giving and sharing than in hoarding and taking. – Fri. Bhikkhu Sanghasena
* Sacred offerings of compassion and relief: Ven. Bhikkhu Sanghasena, the silent reformer (BDG)
Bhikkhu Sanghasena (Facebook)
Mahabodhi International Meditation Center
Save the Himalaya Foundation
International Network of Committed Buddhists
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