Shravasti Dhammika was born in Australia in 1951 into a Christian family and converted to Buddhism at the age of 18. In 1973 he went to Thailand with the intention of becoming a monk and from there to Laos, Burma and finally to India. For the next three years, he traveled around India learning yoga and meditation and finally ordained under Venerable Matiwella Sangharatna, the last disciple of Anagarika Dharmapala.
In 1976 he went to Sri Lanka where he studied Pali at Sri Lanka Vidyalaya and later became one of the co-founders of the Nilambe Meditation Centre and one of its teachers. Since then, he has spent most of his time in Sri Lanka and Singapore.