Dr Elizabeth Day commenced concerted Buddhist practice in her 20s, building on earlier personal and doctoral enquiries into experiences of no-self, and intersubjectivity. Her initial teachers were Ven Rakkhita Thera, then abbot of the Sri Lankan forest hermitage (of the Theravada lineage of Ven Nyanatiloka Mahathera), and Ven U Jotiko Sayadaw, of the Burmese Theravadin lineage of Shwe Oo Min Sayadaw. With the guidance of these teachers she engaged in regular and in-depth sutta and Abhidhamma enquiry. She also received precise training in anapanasati, balanced with insight practice. As the practice developed she was invited to teach.
After travel on pilgrimage through India and Sri Lanka at the turn of the millennium she ordained in the Thai Theravada Forest tradition of Ajahn Chah, with Ajahn Sumedho as preceptor. She spent six years as an ordained monastic in the UK. After attending the congress on bhikkhuni ordination in Hamburg in 2007, she left the robes and the monastic community, recognising that it was not ready to integrate women’s equal participation.
Since that time she has held leadership positions in the Health and University sectors. She has a PhD in phenomenology and inter-subjectivity and is a qualified yoga teacher and relational Gestalt psychotherapist. She has roles as a senior academic and Head of Department in New Zealand.
Her practice continues to integrate and represent Theravada trainings, lived within the context of lay life. She is committed to presenting the clarity of the core teachings, and bringing these alive for minds shaped by contemporary democratic paradigms.
With her partner, Willa Thaniya Reid, in 2015 she established a center of practice in Kihikihi, New Zealand. Together they offer a practice space for Dhamma teaching locally and internationally.