Mitra making her declarationsMitra is the Sanskrit word for friend.  Becoming a mitra means making a commitment to Buddhism, to the Triratna Buddhist Community, and is a way of expressing a deepening interest and commitment to living a Buddhist way of life.

After attending Aryaloka meditation and study classes for at least six months, one can explore the process of becoming a mitra with a Mitra Convenor, an Order member who has particular interest in guiding mitras in their spiritual practice.  When a person decides to become a mitra, he/she feels ready to make the following declarations:

  1. I consider myself to be a Buddhist – I consider the Buddha and his teachings as the spiritual ideal
  2. I will practice the Buddhist precepts with: deeds of loving kindness; open-handed generosity; stillness, simplicity and contentment; truthful communication and mindfulness.
  3. I wish to deepen my Buddhist practice within the context of the Triratna Buddhist Order.

Becoming a mitra is celebrated with a Mitra Ceremony, a simple, significant and joyous occasion where one makes one’s declarations publicly.  At this ceremony, one makes offerings of a candle, incense and a flower which symbolize one’s commitment to the teachings of the Buddha, and the beauty and wisdom to be gained by living according to Buddhist principles.

If you are interested in becoming a mitra, or to learn more, please contact Akashavanda (for women) at akashavanda@gmail.com, or Surakshita (for men) at g.patenaude@comcast.net

Once a person makes this commitment, he/she has the opportunity to study the Dharma Training Course for Mitras with other mitras.  This course can be found at www.freebuddhistaudio.com

Being a mitra provides opportunities to deepen one’s spiritual practice by developing spiritual friendship, and by studying, attending retreats and meditating with other Buddhist practitioners.