History of Sasana Ramsi Myanmar Buddhist Centre

We want to express our heartfelt thanks to all our donors, members and supporters for your generosity, dedication, devotion, commitment and contributions. You donate not only the financial aspect but also your precious time, effort and laborious physical hard work at the monastery. Without your help we will not be here where we are today. It is all due to your good will and generosity. Your contributions started many years ago; since early 1990 and still going strong to present day. Thank you again for your generosity.

Sasana Ramsi Vihara Trust

This first charity Sasana Ramsi Vihara Trust was founded by Venerable U Uttara in June 1995 with the support of 5 Trustees for the charity. The charity registration number with the Charity Commission is 1053233. The address then was 18 Ospringe House, Waterloo, London SE1 8TP. With continued support of the donors, Venerable U Uttara and Venerable U Thilakehta managed to find a suitable place in North –West London which became a resident of a big magnificent sitting Buddha statute and 3 monks; Venerable U Uttara, Venerable U Thilakehta and Venerable U Pannasara. In 2002 December, the charity moved to the present address - 83 Booth Road, Colindale, London NW9 5JU. This Buddha statute sitting in the shrine room is the biggest Buddha statute in the UK and in Europe.

In 2013 The Sasana Ramsi Vihara Trust was incorporated into company limited by guarantee and became a registered charity company with Charity Commission, named as Sasana Ramsi Myanmar Buddhist Centre and the registration number is 1161315. This charity is going from strength to strength. Over the past 10 years, the monks have been teaching Burmese basic literature and Buddhism to children, conducting Dhamma talks and meditation classes to the community at 83 Booth Road regularly every week with the commitment of the parents and children and the donors. As a result of these commitments, the Barnet Council has granted a Certificate in June 2017 that 83 Booth Road, Sasana Ramsi Myanmar Buddhist Centre is now an approved residence for the monks, monastery and a Buddhist community centre that facilitates Religious Education.

Sasana Ramsi Myanmar Buddhist Centre

This charity is managed by the Trustees and directors of the charity company. Venerable U Uttara is Ex-officio, Mr Sein Tun Aung, Dr Win Naing, Dr Win Htut and Ms Tin Htar Swe are trustees and Venerables U Thilakehta and U Pannasara, Dr Khin Win Nwe, Ms Thidar Thwin, Ms May Hla Maung Htut, Ms Thidar Win Maung are directors and Dr May Khin Erskine is the company secretary. The chief monk Venerable U Uttara is so passionate about developing, establishing and maintaining the Burmese Buddhist culture and tradition. He is very much concerned of the future generation of the young people as they have very little exposure to Buddhism and Burmese culture. Without the Buddha’s teaching there will not be Burmese tradition and culture as the Burmese tradition developed from Buddha’s teachings. He is so keen to get the young people involve in the developing Burmese tradition in the UK. He persuaded the young parents to bring their children to the monastery every Saturday/Sunday to learn Burmese and to participate in the Burmese entertainments, singing and dancing. He was the first to organise the Burmese New Year celebration in mid1990 and it is still going strong. He was very instrumental in organising and developing a Buddha Day, a special occasion where all the monks in London and around get together with the support of the donors, to celebrate the Buddha’s Birthday, the Enlightenment Day and the Day he passed away which all fell on the same in the month of May. The first celebration was in May 2004 and since then the celebration of Buddha Day is going strong. He is also extremely busy developing the Buddhist monasteries in Europe- Ireland, Finland, Netherland, Denmark and Germany. Although there are difficulties, these will not stop Venerable U Uttara to do what he thinks is important for the Buddha’s teaching to spread and to establish and maintain the Burmese culture and tradition in the UK and in Europe. Venerable U Thilakehta is very keen on the delivering the Dharma talks and conducting meditation sessions. He is a very experience meditation instructor trained under Mahasi Sayadaw for 3 years. He teaches Buddhism to the children and Abidharma to the adults and help to those who wish to take the Abidharma examinations from level 1 to 3. He is very generous with his time and also flexible in his teaching time to accommodate the time that the learner can give; any day of the week and even at night after the learner finishes his /her work and can make the way to the monastery. He is extremely good at writing poems related to the Buddha and his teaching. He is passionate about exploring and learning the literatures writing by well-known senior monks about Buddha’s teachings. Venerable U Pannasara is extremely good at keeping the monastery in order and hardworking monk. He is very friendly, warm and welcoming. He involves in all the dharma talks giving by his senior monks.

Daily routine

  • Daily routine of the monastic life begins with the monks offerings water, flowers and lights to Buddha
  • Daily prayers and chanting of the monks 5 am.
  • Monks have their breakfast at 6 am
  • Tidying up the monastery and keeping things in order
  • Ready to accept the visitors and returning the phone calls
  • Monks have their lunch at 11am
  • If there are donors and visitors, they have their lunch at 12 noon
  • Dhamma talks and blessing at 1 pm
  • The visitors tidying up the kitchen and living room/shrine room
  • The monks retreat to their rooms and read, study and plan for their own development
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, U Thi teaches Abidharma to those who have arranged in advance
  • In the evening the visitors come and visit the monks and the Buddha and the monks give their blessings
  • The evening prayers and chanting start at 5pm for one hour
  • Then the monks do their own meditation and retire to bed at about 10pm

Children have their first blessing from the monks on their 100 days birthday celebration. The Sasana Ramsi Myanmar Buddhist Centre is a multifaith centre and everybody from any race and religion is welcome and warmly received by our monks for the blessing and teaching meditation who are interested

Weekly routine

  • Most Saturdays and Sundays -- there are some visitors who want to celebrate their special occasions and bring food, flowers, water and other essentials things for the monks and monastery.
  • At 1pm the monks give Dhamma talks and blessing to the donors, their guests and visitors
  • 1.30pm on Saturday the Burmese and Buddhism teaching sessions for the children start; the parents help the volunteer teacher; 5pm the class finishes and the children have their tea. The parents do the tidying up. Then the monks do their evening routine before they retire to bed.
  • On Sundays -- There is meditation sessions for those who want to do meditation, starting from 9am and throughout the day with breaks in-between. It is flexible.
  • At 5pm, there is a group chanting and praying with the monks.
  • Every first Sunday of the month there is a group meditation session starting from 9am, sitting meditation and walking meditation with a Dhamma talk and instruction for meditation from the monks in between. One can join in at one’s chosen time with advance agreement with the monk who is leading the meditation sessions

Other events

  • January- on New Year Day there is a group chanting, praying and spreading loving kindness to all beings in the Universe.
  • February- Dha Ma Nae Pwe- celebrating the Burmese tradition of cooking sticky rice with groundnut oil, coconuts flakes, sesame seeds, peanuts and ginger. It is a group activity and enjoyable; making new friends and networking and socialising while cooking the sticky rice.
  • March – parents and children start to prepare and rehearse their singing and dancing for their participation in the entertainments in Burmese New Year Festival in April.
  • April – celebrating the Burmese New Year Festival
  • May – Vesak -- Buddha’s Day celebration; all the monks and donors from London and around participate on this special event.
  • June – Maha Samaya Day—the Buddha’s Discourse on different types of Concentration depending on the individual’s character—chanting , praying and meditation—group activity
  • July – Waso robe offering day – end of Raining Days Retreat
  • August – Buddha’s discourse on Loving Kindness
  • September – chanting and meditation on Full Moon Day
  • October – Abidharma Day—Buddha’s first Discourse – 4 Noble Truths and 8 Folds Noble Path
  • November – Sasana Ramsi Kathina Day
  • December – Full Moon Day of Na Daw – group chanting and praying

Next Stage

The monastery is a small semi- detached 3 bed-room house. The 3monks live upstairs and the ground floor is divided into 2 rooms, one is for kitchen and breakfast room and the other is a multipurpose room using it for shrine room where we pay homage to Buddha, a magnificent big sitting Buddha Statute; the chanting and prayer room, meditation room, Dhamma and blessing room for the donors and dining room for the monks. When we have special occasions such as birthday blessing celebration, wedding blessing, blessing for good send off when someone passed away and Remembrance Day, then we are a bit crowded in one sitting room.

We would like to have a bit more space so we are trying to raise some funding to be able to buy a new premise. You all have been so generous and most of you have already been contributing monthly donations towards the fund. We warmly welcome your ideas and suggestions how we can raise the charity income of at least £1000 per month to be able to talk to the bank for the loan to buy the other half of the semi- detached house of 83. The price could be around £550,000.

We very much hope that with your continued generosity we will be able to fulfil our dream of our monastery with a space to accommodate the donors, guest and visitors and a space to accommodate children’s teaching session and a space to meditate.

My dear family and friends your help is much appreciated. Thank you for your help which enables the monks to help us in improving ourselves and our children and our grandchildren through Buddha’s teachings, delivered by our monks. Your donations help our children to learn our Burmese language, Burmese literature and Burmese culture and tradition which I believe is adorable.

Please continue with your donations, any regular amount is going to be helpful and will go a long way when we start talking to the banks. The banks want to see the regular income on our charity account before they agree to give us the loan.

Please spread this message to other members of your family and friends. People are willing to help if they get the message that your community needs your help. In return you will get the benefit not only for this existence but also in the next existence and the next, and the next, throughout the Sasara with good merits in the higher realms.

You can donate by standing order into Sasana Ramsi Myanmar Buddhist Centre Account name, the account number is 20473885; sort code is: 16- 58-10; then bank name is; TRIODOS Bank.

Your generosity is very much appreciated and a huge thanks to you all.

The contact number is 07592223160; I would love to hear your advice and suggestions.