The Abbey of Druk Gawa Khilwa currently has around 400 hundred nuns in nunneries across the Himalayas. In December 2010, after numerous requests from the many girls who had been waiting to join, His Holiness Gyalwang Drukpa agreed to take another 400 nuns for ordination.
Since Druk Gawa Khilwa Abbey began, His Holiness’ wish has been to provide female practitioners with the same opportunities as their male counterparts, and to revive a spiritual lineage of Yoginis, unique to the Drukpa lineage. Under His Holiness’ guidance and our sponsors constant support the nuns have become the backbone of the lineage.
Just how far these practitioners had developed became apparent in 2007 when His Holiness first allowed the senior nuns to train in the Six Yogas of Naropa, a spiritual practice which leads to enlightenment in one lifetime. Since that time the nuns have developed and become a genuine manifestation of compassion in action, relieving the sufferings of those they meet and sharing their spiritual accomplishments with their Drukpa family around the world.
The nuns often say that their benefactors are always in their prayers and, as His Holiness and Guru Rinpoche and Jetsun Milarepa before him have said, the benefactors of Dharma practitioners receive the same merit as the practitioners they support.
His Holiness’ wish for the future is that some of the nuns will go to the different centres around the world to support the lay practitioners, and ensure that the lineage remains strong and pure.