Venerable Ajahn Chandako was ordained as a Buddhist monk in 1990 in the lineage of Venerable Ajahn Chah of the Thai Forest Tradition. Born in 1962 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.A., his interest in the teachings of the Buddha grew as he studied towards a B.A. degree in Religious Studies from Carleton College (1984). Following graduation, he began applying himself to training in meditation and subsequently went to Asia to find a monastery suitable for fully devoting himself to the teachings of the Buddha. After practicing intensive meditation in various monasteries in Thailand and traveling extensively in Tibet, Nepal and India, he eventually settled at Wat Pah Nanachat, the International Forest Monastery, in the North-east of Thailand. Ajahn Chah established this branch monastery specifically for his English-speaking disciples.
For the first five years after his full ordination as a bhikkhu, Venerable Ajahn Chandako was based at Wat Pah Nanachat. He then began wandering, seeking out forest meditation masters and practicing under their guidance. Ajahn Chandako has translated into English many of the teachings he received in Thai and is the author of numerous books and articles.
In 2004 Ajahn Chandako established Vimutti Buddhist Monastery near Auckland, New Zealand. Situated in the midst of 150 acres of native forest, streams and rolling hills, the monastery is a resource for people wishing to deepen their wisdom and open their heart.