Buddhists of Suburbia

(1 × 50’) UK

BBC 2 (Everyman)

*Producer/Directors: Sunandan Walia & Yugesh Walia
Assistant Producer: Anna Sommerville
Photography: Chris Cox and various
Film Editor: Paul Jackson
Series Editor: Ruth Pitt*

In this Everyman we follow three Buddhists who are about to undertake life-changing journeys.

Abhayakirti, born Jewish and a Buddhist convert, spends 6 days in Auschwitz concentration camp trying to come to terms with the horrors of the Jewish genocide that killed members of his family. “I felt absolute rage about what happened at the holocaust but I hope I wouldn’t act out of that rage and harm any of those people.”

Teresa, a Brazilian and a brilliant scientist, gives up her money and career orientated life to move into a community with six other female Buddhists. As she throws out the Yves Saint Laurent suits and prepares herself for a life of queuing for the bathroom every morning, she seems positive about what she is doing. What brought about this huge change in her life and what does she get in place of her material possessions?

At the age 26, Bessie is about to leave London on a six-month trip to Bodh Gaya in India, the place where Buddha found enlightenment. The sight of a young western woman among all the saffron and red robes may seem odd but she is accepted as one of their own. “…it may sound strange to many people but at this time I want to invest in this.”

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