Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc.
BuddhaNet was started in 1994, by a senior Australian monk Venerable Pannyavaro, a meditation teacher. At first it as a bulletin board concerned mainly with Australian issues, but growing national and international interest led to it moving online in 1995 and greatly expanding its range of resources. In a recent development, the Americas and Asia directories have been vastly expanded and new European and Africa/Middle East directories mean that the scope is now worldwide. Whether we are talking information, textual resources or directories, BuddhaNet has over thirty times the information of Tricycle and Dharmanet, its closet rivals.
BuddhaNet is run by the Buddhist Educational Association in Norther New South Wales, Australia, which is headed by Ven Pannyavaro. The office has four computers with several volunteers with FTP privileges adding their own material, a server, and services are provided gratis by a local ISP. Funding comes by donation, mainly from Buddhist temples. The organisation is run on a shoestring.
Unfortunately, with so many time pressures on volunteers, the downloading and analysis of server logs has had to take a back seat. Our last analysis a showed over 800,000 hits a day. This was before the new directories, and the popularity of BuddhaNet has increased greatly since then. There are perhaps about 50,000,000 Buddhists online in the Western Nations: most of these are in a more educated bracket and quite web aware: most would hit BuddhaNet at least a few times a year. In addition, there is of course tremendous web interest in Buddhist countries, with the Vietnamese-Americans and Japanese leading the world in web innovation.
It is apparent that the expanding coverage of BuddhaNet has created a need for a larger organization. The growth in centres and organizations worldwide is now so rapid that keeping up these directories is in itself a full-time job More information, including high-quality textual and graphical resources, is being sent to BuddhaNet than we have time to put online.
There has been a recent move towards online meditations and teaching groups. The usefulness of these and the response to them has far exceeded everyone’s expectations. In the near future, streaming video and audio presentations will become of prime importance, and Buddhanet.tv has been registered to meet this demand. One use of online meetings may be in fundraising. ‘Chatathons’ may be able to raise funds for much-needed hospitals and orphanages in India, Nepal, Burma and Sri Lanka.BuddhaNet now operates three more website:–