Phramaha Bhatsakorn Piyobhaso, Pali IX, BA (MCU), MA (MAHIDOL), was born in 1974 in the northeast of Thailand and became a novice monk at 13 after finishing elementary school. Seven years later, he received higher ordination as a monk at Wat Mahadhatu, Bangkok.
While a novice, he studied Buddhist doctrines, Pali and Abhidhamma and was trained in Buddhist traditional meditation practice until he moved to Bangkok and entered Mahachulalongkorn Buddhist University in which he obtained his first degree in English with first class honours in 1999. In that same year he completed the Pali IX which is regarded as the highest level of Pali Studies in Thailand and he then furthered his studies with an MA in Ethical Studies at Mahidol University, which he completed in 2004.
In 2000, he was engaged by the International Buddhist Meditation Centre (IBMC), Bangkok, to work as a speaker and a meditation instructor. On several occasions he ran meditation retreats for both Thais and foreigners. At Section 5 Wat Mahadhatu, he gave basic instruction on Insight Meditation and gave talks and guided instruction to advanced meditators. He was also one of the regular preachers at Wat Mahadhatu, Bangkok.
From 2001 to September 2006, he worked for Mahachulalongkorn Buddhist University as an Executive Officer and a lecturer at the Department of Religion and Philosophy, Faculty of Buddhism. (He still retains his position at the university and is on a leave of absence while living and studying in the UK.)
On many occasions, as a representative of the Mahachulalongkorn Buddhist University, he was assigned to participate in international conferences both in Thailand and abroad; in addition, he was often invited to give talks overseas in Thai and English on Buddhism, Buddhist Meditation, Buddhist Morality, and Buddhist Philosophy.
He now lives in Bristol (under the auspices of the Abbot of the Birmingham Buddhavihara Temple—see below) and is committed to carrying on his missionary work in England and studying Buddhism to a higher academic level at Bristol University.
At the Sixth International Buddhist Conference on the United Nations Day of Vesak held on the 4th-6th of May 2009 in Bangkok, Ven. Bhatsakorn delivered a paper on the Buddhist Perspective on Global Warming which you can download as a PDF document.
Ven. Bhatsakorn can be found on Facebook by searching for "Bhatsakorn Piyobhaso."
Venerable Jinho is a new Dharma teacher in England. She took ordination in the Chinese Chan tradition with Ven. Master Sheng-yen in 2000, training intensively in the Dharma Drum Mountain in Taiwan for six years. She then studied at the Dharma Drum Buddhist University for four years, where she majored in Buddhist doctrines, Vinaya (Buddhist precepts) and Chan or Zen practice and meditation.
She arrived in England in 2007 and is currently developing a PhD thesis on Buddhist monasticism in Britain at the University of Bristol. She is also teaching Chan meditation on a regular basis and leading monthly one-day retreats in the Multifaith Chaplaincy Centre of Bristol University and short retreats elsewhere.
Dr Phramaha Laow Panyasiri, BA (MCU), MA (London), PhD (Birmingham) was born in 1960 in Thailand and became a novice monk at 14.
Dr Panyasiri graduated from Mahachulalongkorn Buddhist University in 1987 before going to work in the UK as a Dhammaduta missionary monk at the Buddhapadipa Temple in Wimbledon, London. While doing this work he also studied and was active in charitable work in the UK and Thailand. He co-founded the Anglo-Thai Foundation in 1990 to raise funds to support the education of poor children in Thailand. The foundation is still active and successful. In 1993 he studied at the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London, completing his MA degree in 1995.
In July 1995 he became Abbot of the Buddhavihara Temple, Aston, and Birmingham and began teaching Buddhist Studies, Buddhist Chanting and Meditation.
In 1998 Dr Panyasiri began studying part-time for a PhD degree by research at Birmingham University. He was appointed Buddhist Chaplain at the University and, in the following year, at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham. In 2004 he was the first Thai Buddhist monk to receive a PhD degree from a British University. His thesis was on "The British practice of Theravada Buddhism."
In 2005 Dr Panyasiri brought the British Samatha Chanting Group to Thailand to perform chanting and promote the value and quality of Buddhist practice in the West.
Dr Panyasiri is Secretary General of the Council of Thai Buddhist Monks in the United Kingdom (CTBMUK) and Abbot of the Buddhavihara Temple, Kings Bromley, Lichfield.