Women, Equal to Men

Mae Chee Kaew

Women, Equal to Men

Monks who are skilled in meditation are not biased by cultural conditioning. They have no doubt that women who observe the eight precepts and practice seriously can attain exceptionally high levels of meditation.

In truth, women have a remarkable capacity for understanding Dhamma and can achieve deep levels of samādhi and develop extraordinary knowledge and wisdom. Many nuns and laywomen in Thailand surpass the monks in their accomplishments.

For this reason, meditation masters generally hold female practitioners in high esteem, considering them equal to men in their spiritual potential. In the Thai forest tradition today, many revered teachers believe that women are capable of the highest spiritual attainment. They often recommend female monastics as exemplary teachers. Many forest meditation masters have women students, both nuns and laywomen, who are recognized as teachers in their own right. These women actively participate in their religious communities as skilled meditators, healers or mentors, and are revered by local people.

Mae Chee Kaew was just such a woman. Practicing nuns like her have left a legacy to inspire future generations and to show how the Buddhist path of practice may be reopened by anyone, male or female.

This reflection is from the book, Mae Chee Kaew, (pdf) p.19, Compiled from Thai sources & written by
Bhikkhu Dick Sīlaratano