[ENG] Presentation

Samaṇadīpa Forest Buddhist Hermitage is a monastic (samaṇa) sanctuary (dīpa) for monks from the contemplative and conservative forest tradition of Theravāda Buddhism. It is the first of the kind in this part of Europe that follows the Buddha's original teachings, as found in the early texts, and has an unbroken lineage from around 2600 years ago. The monks follow the high standard of the monastic code (Vinaya) and the teaching (dhamma), which can be found in Theravādin countries (Thailand, Sri Lanka, Burma, Laos, Cambodia). More about the tradition you can find here.

Samaṇadīpa uses four separate lands. The central Hermitage's cottage stands on a slope of Goljek Village, primarily covered in forest. Near the main house is also "Toplar" where all activities occur in warmer seasons. In the forest are two kutis. The second - more secluded and more private property for monks - has an enclosure cottage Viveka Vihāra in Kriška Reber, with two bedrooms and two kutis. The property is located about 1.5 km from the central part. The third part is called the Guesthouse Nirodha in Brezje, 700 m from the central part. On the property are also located two kutis. 85 km south of Samanadipa in the Kočevje region is the branch hermitage called Hillside Hermitage, which is the place for the monastic community. 

Samaṇadīpa invites all visitors interested in the Buddha's teachings and meditation and those just looking for answers to their existential problems. This place is small and humble and is available for meditation. The primary purpose of the monastery is to offer monks a place for solitude. However, visitors are still welcome to come to talk to the monks (usually on the first Sunday of the month). The monastery also allows guests to stay (more info).



The hermitage was established on 15 April 2016 and is registered as a legal entity under private law ("religious community") with the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia on 16 January 2020. (Registration number: 2656205000, tax number: 35038209.)

As specified in the Basic Act, the monastery is governed by two bodies, the Assembly of Monks (Sangha) and the Administrative Council.

The Assembly of Monks is the highest internal organ of the Hermitage, made up of fully ordained monks (bhikkhuji), presided over by the Guardian, who is also the official representative of the monastery. The monks make sure that all things go according to the Dhamma and Vinaya. Major decisions are taken unanimously.

The Administrative Council is formed by a selected group of lay members of the monastery, which is the working and consultative body of the monastery for the non-profit management of the monastery property. The president and the treasurer were elected on 27th September 2020 for the period of five years.

    President: Monishankar Singha
    Treasurer: Bojan Pirih
    Dragoljub Blagojevic
    Bojan Božič
    Neda Bras
    Maja Najdič
    Matjaž Piavec

Registered lay members are persons who are committed to the three refuges, follow the five precepts and respect monastic life, and can advise the Assembly of Monks (Sangha) and the Administrative Council.



The Buddha created monastic communities as the optimal lifestyle for those seeking to understand the ultimate truth of nature. The main purpose and responsibility of a Buddhist monk or nun is to put the teachings into practice. Committed to simplicity, renunciation (having no money and few possessions) and devotion to meditation, monastics do not aim to seek pleasure through self-indulgence or worldly distractions. Instead they strive for a more subtle inner happiness, one that blossoms forth when peace and wisdom take root in the heart. As one’s wisdom develops so does one’s capacity to help others.

Monastic life in all of its activities is designed to develop positive qualities that lead to awakening — qualities such as generosity, loving kindness, integrity, humility, determined effort and a continuity of clear awareness. Since the time of the Buddha, monks and nuns have followed his example by living in forests, mountains and caves. Far from the stress and busyness that afflict modern life, a tranquil natural setting provides the perfect environment for developing serenity and insight.



We aim to keep the place simple and basic, since we believe such conditions are supportive to our practice, and the Forest Tradition emphasises the Buddha's guidance that monks should be easy to take care of.

The Hermitage's main purpose is to serve as a residence for a small number of Buddhist monks and laity. Based on a strict standard of discipline of the Forest Tradition, the monks are dedicated to renunciation of sensuality and material possessions.

Samaṇadīpa also supports the lay community in their practice of the Buddhist teachings. By offering almsfood and other requisites to the monastic community, visitors to the Hermitage develop generosity (dāna) in the traditional Buddhist form. Visitors can deepen their theoretical knowledge of the Buddha's teaching, discuss their practice and receive encouragement to apply this knowledge to their own life. Samaṇadīpa serves as a sanctuary of quiet reflection and contemplation, where the peaceful, natural environment and the teachings allow visitors to find peace in their heart.

To support those who wish to train themselves according to the instructions given by the Buddha, Samaṇadīpa offers

  • accommodation for a few lay guests to experience monastic life as supporter to the hermitage,

  • study of the Buddha's Teachings - the hermitage has also a library,

  • Dhamma conversations with monks,

  • daily opportunities to offer almsfood, requisites to the resident monks or help with the work.


The Residents

Bhante Sangamaji Thero

He was born in Vienna, Austria, in 1974. He was ordained as a novice in 1998 in Sri Lanka with Ven. K. Ñanananda as his teacher, and in 2000 as a bhikkhu. Most of his monastic time have been spend in Sri Lanka, and also in Thailand, Australia, Germany, USA (Temple Monastery), and in Malaysia (Sasanarakkha Buddhist Sanctuary). His main interests are the study and practice of Early Buddhism, the training of the mind, and a simple monk's life in the forest.

Bhante Hiriko Thero
(the Guardian of the Hermitage)

He is the founding Elder of the Hermitage. He was born in Ljubljana, in 1985. He took anagarika (postulat) precepts in Santacittarama Monastero Buddhista in Italy in 2004. In the same year, he went to England to take samanera (novice) ordination, and in 2006 he became a bhikkhu (fully ordained monk). His preceptor was Venerable Luang Por Sumedho (Phra Chao Khun Rajasumedhajahn). Ajahn Hiriko is also the chief editor and the administrator at Path Press and the author of The Hermit of Bundala, the biography of an English monk from Sri Lanka, Ñāṇavīra Thera. He is also a writer of Slovenian articles (Menihovi misli) and translator of Buddha's talks or Suttas. Previously he was living in the international branch monasteries of Wat Pah Pong and in Sri Lanka.


Bhante Phasuko

He was born in 1980 in The Netherlands. He became bhikkhu (fully ordained monk) in 2014 and since then he has been living in international branch monasteries of Wat Pah Pong.

Bhante Ñānadipo (Dhiraṁkuro)
(the secretary)

He was born in 1987 in London, UK. He took on Samanera precepts in early October 2020 and Bhikkhu ordination in July 2021 at Samanadipa Hermitage.


Bhante Sihacitto (Dhīrapañño)

He was born in Bramberg, Germany, in 1993. He took on Samanera precepts in April 2021 and Bhikkhu ordination in July 2021 at Samanadipa Hermitage.

Anagarika Aleks

He was in Nova Gorica, Slovenia, in 1994. He took on Anagarika precepts in July 2022 at Samanadipa Hermitage.



The Community of Hillside Hermitage (Kočevje, Slovenia)

- Ajahn Nyanamoli (currently at Samanadipa)
- Ajahn Thaniyo (currently in Serbia)












(C) SloTheravada, 2022

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