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The lay community very much appreciates the monastics and the work done by them. They hear Thich Nat Hanh praising the Sangha in his talks and are encouraged to go to any of the sisters and brothers, as they are called, any time they need help or advice. Thay stresses how important the Sangha are for the propagation of the Dharma.

Ven. Thubten Kundrol

For Buddhists, we remember our refuge in the triple gem—Buddha, Dharma and Sangha—every day. This brings mindfulness to the teachings of the Buddha (dharma) which will alleviate our suffering; gratitude to the Buddha who showed us the path; and the living example of the Sangha (the community putting the teachings into practice).

Remembering our refuge in the Sangha, protecting the ordination of the monastic community, has tremendous benefit in our own lives, now and in the future. The dharma has taken root in many parts of the world. It has and will continue to benefit countless beings. Without the monastic community this would not be possible. From the early days of the IMI in the 1970’s the monks and nuns have served tirelessly to help bring the benefit of the Buddha’s teachings to the far corners of this planet. Today they continue to serve in various capacities, to study, to practice and to live a life in the Buddha’s footsteps.

There are many ways to remember our refuge and offer support to the ordained community. Through respect, we cultivate our own refuge. The practice of generosity in offering the four requisites—food, accommodation, clothing and medicine—extends the opportunity to develop your own practice. Through service and through our practice we can recollect the benefits of the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha within our own lives.