The Ajahns of Kusula Hermitage
Ajahn Santutthi & Ajahn J.R. have built a new hermitage in Roleystone.
Born to a family of Vietnamese refugees, Ajahn Santutthi was in training to become a chef before discovering Buddhism at the age of 21. At age 23 he’d decided to “give it all up” and walk the path of the Buddha. He was ordained at Bodhinyana monastery by Ajahn Brahm in 2005. After 7 years he left to assist Ajahn Khemavaro at Wat Buddha Dhamma in Wisemans Ferry, NSW. After returning to Perth he came to Wat Dhammayanaram in July 2018. From April 2020 he has led the hermitage building work from a nearby rental property in Gosnells. He now resides at Kusala as abbot. He has been a monk for 16 years.
“J.R.” as he’s usually known was born in Sydney in 1977. He grew up in Greenwich before moving to Perth with his family in 1996. There he studied software engineering and upon finishing his degree he spent several years in Melbourne where he worked in software development. Though successful in his career, he found something was lacking. Getting interested in Buddhism he came across Ajahn Brahm’s “Basic Method of Meditation” and started listening to some of the recorded talks at Dhammaloka. Thus inspired he returned to Perth, paid off his debts and ordained as an anagarika in 2006. He took higher ordination in 2009. Though most of his monastic life has been spent at Bodhinyana Monastery training with Ajahn Brahm he has spent time at Wat Buddha Dhamma in NSW, Na Uyana in Sri Lanka and Newbury Buddhist Monastery in Victoria. J.R. shared the rental property with Ajahn Santutthi and laboured along side him to build Kusala. J.R. has been a monk for 12 years.