Author Topic: Meet the British banker who turned Buddhist nun in Bhutan  (Read 6915 times)


  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 560
Meet the British banker who turned Buddhist nun in Bhutan
« on: November 06, 2019, 10:33:14 AM »
Meet the British banker who turned Buddhist nun in Bhutan

Updated: 28 Aug 2017, 11:26 AM IST

The unusual story of Emma
Emma Slade is an unlikely Buddhist nun in the Himalayas. In red monastic robes, flashing an eager smile, the tall British woman has been shadowing people around the corridors of the Royal University of Bhutan where book lovers have congregated for Mountain Echoes, Bhutan's annual literary festival.

Raising money for charity
Slade, 51, is using the money she raises from books in a charity that she founded in Bhutan two years ago. “I just built a hospital for specially-abled Bhutanese children and I didn't build it with bananas. Money is important but you also need to ask yourself, how much is enough,“ deadpans the Buddhist nun.

Chronicling the tale of her life
Her book, 'Set Free', narrates the tale of her own astonishing life and its changing course after Slade, a Cambridge-educated, high-flying banking analyst was taken hostage during a business trip to Jakarta.

Being taken hostage
In a violent September afternoon in 1997, Slade had a gun was pushed into her chest by a stranger in her hotel room.

She remained curled up on the floor, pleading for her life until rescued by the police.

Yet, afterwards being showed a photograph of her attacker,­ a gambler looking for money slumped and held down by cops, she had felt a strange sense of “compassion“ for him.

Her ability to care for someone who had caused her pain surprised her.

Money not enough for happiness
She returned to her desk in Hong Kong but could not escape the post-traumatic stress disorder that had started to set in.

Upon discovering that money does not make one safe, she resigned.

Her transition into a monk was not entirely surprising when she looks back today .

I had my room painted saffron yellow, insisted on not wearing shoes and always talked about Bhutan.“

First woman to be ordained in Bhutan
In 2012, she became the first Western woman to be ordained in Bhutan.

Shaving her head was not a big deal for Slade, who as a 22-year-old, had cut off all her hair on an impulse.

“I had liked the freedom it gave then and I still do.“ While becoming a nun, I thought about the cycle of relationships in my life, particularly the feeling of lusting after someone.

But how peaceful it's been to take a vow of celibacy.

Pema Daki: The fun nun!
The “fun nun“ who believes that humour is essential to Buddhist practice is underneath a serious practitioner who has been studying texts in Tibetan.

She continues to live in Whitstable, England -the small seaside town once famous only for oysters is now recognised as the home of the 'nun' who goes by the name of Pema Deki (lotus blooms).


  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 498
Re: Meet the British banker who turned Buddhist nun in Bhutan
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2019, 08:32:41 AM »
Sometime a traumatic encounter can change our life for better. Without this horrible encounter, Ms Emma might still be working in the corporate world and chasing after money and fame. She may have lots of money but she may not be happy. But now, she may not have a lot but she is happy. She brings people hopes and positivity by sharing Dharma with them. We can make our lives more meaningful by serving others.