Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a monk

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Ben
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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby Ben » Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:06 pm

Respect, please!
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby Viscid » Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:06 pm

Without being able to fully evaluate the kid's domestic situation, it's difficult to pass any judgement as to whether or not he should be prevented from ordaining in Tibet.

If I were the one determining this, I would assess the mother's judgement, and if she has shown a history of poor decisions then I would assume that this decision was not made for the child's best interests. If my impression of her was that she was rational and loving, then that would give me confidence in her ability to make proper decisions for her child.

We need to determine the risk of this decision on the child's welfare-- which we don't have sufficient information about as it's a fairly novel situation. What could happen if he goes to this monastery? The facilities may be inadequate, and he may contract some sort of illness. He may suffer some sort of psychological harm from indulging in fervent religiosity at such a young age. But in the end-- living at a Tibetan monastery at 15 sounds like a rather enviable youth to have: he'll be able to learn the culture, the language, the religion.. perhaps he'll grow up eccentric but I'm not convinced that such an environment can be confidently said to be 'harmful' to a child.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby David N. Snyder » Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:27 pm

If he goes, hopefully it will work out well for him and he'll have a fruitful practice.

Hopefully he won't wake up one day and say WTF did I do? And then try and come back, with no university education, not even a high school diploma and then has to look for the most unskilled labor positions. And in this sense this is what the government is trying to protect, his own best interests in the long-run.

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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby Viscid » Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:32 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:with no university education, not even a high school diploma and then has to look for the most unskilled labor positions. And in this sense this is what the government is trying to protect, his own best interests in the long-run.


Good point. And the school-leaving age in Belgium is relatively high (18 as opposed to 15 or 16 in other countries in Europe.)

From wikipedia:

Full-time education is compulsory from the age of 6 to 15. From the person's 16th to their 18th birthday, they are obliged to pursue at least part-time education so they have a choice between full-time or part-time education.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby chownah » Wed Sep 18, 2013 3:09 am

David N. Snyder wrote:If he goes, hopefully it will work out well for him and he'll have a fruitful practice.

Hopefully he won't wake up one day and say WTF did I do? And then try and come back, with no university education, not even a high school diploma and then has to look for the most unskilled labor positions. And in this sense this is what the government is trying to protect, his own best interests in the long-run.

On the other hand, if someone is free to choose and decides to not go hopefully they won't wake up one day and say WTF did I do? I've got a university education and a stressful job which I hate.....my friends are only concerned with making more money and the status symbols it can purchase.

But the boy, it seems, is not free to choose. If he was allowed to go I think that the education he might obtain through world travel might serve him better in life than a uni degree. What is the educational value of living in a foreign country, learning a foreign language, learning to follow a different culture, experiencing a different environment with different weather patterns, flora, and fauna? And, what is the value of pursuing the dhamma?

For MOST people, attending uni is about four more years of living off of others and partying for now,and making more money later even if you hate your job.......for MOST people it has little to do with education. My views only.

And, don't forget that the temple where he was headed was a school for children very similar to him.

I am not trying to make a determination as to whether it is better for him to go or not. I am trying to show a different sort of evaluation of what constitutes an education and how I think education should be evaluated.
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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby chownah » Wed Sep 18, 2013 3:12 am

Viscid wrote:
David N. Snyder wrote:with no university education, not even a high school diploma and then has to look for the most unskilled labor positions. And in this sense this is what the government is trying to protect, his own best interests in the long-run.


Good point. And the school-leaving age in Belgium is relatively high (18 as opposed to 15 or 16 in other countries in Europe.)

From wikipedia:

Full-time education is compulsory from the age of 6 to 15. From the person's 16th to their 18th birthday, they are obliged to pursue at least part-time education so they have a choice between full-time or part-time education.

I think that the school where he was headed more than adequately fulfills the State requirement for part time education.
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Re: Belgian boy prevented from flying to India to become a m

Postby dagon » Wed Sep 18, 2013 6:50 am

chownah wrote:
Viscid wrote:
David N. Snyder wrote:with no university education, not even a high school diploma and then has to look for the most unskilled labor positions. And in this sense this is what the government is trying to protect, his own best interests in the long-run.


Good point. And the school-leaving age in Belgium is relatively high (18 as opposed to 15 or 16 in other countries in Europe.)

From wikipedia:

Full-time education is compulsory from the age of 6 to 15. From the person's 16th to their 18th birthday, they are obliged to pursue at least part-time education so they have a choice between full-time or part-time education.

I think that the school where he was headed more than adequately fulfills the State requirement for part time education.
chownah


From the web site

Our missions and current activities
The main aim of this establishment is to gather children from remote places where there are no proper schools, educational facilities, or means of transportation (and children of poor parents and orphan children) - and to nurture them by giving both monastic and moral education. When the children first join this monastery, we have to look after them like their parents in daily activities such as eating, sitting, sleeping and so on. However, our main aim is to help them to become endowed with virtuous morality, and bring benefits in human society wherever they go and live.

http://www.jonangmonasteryshimla.com/Mo ... _Info.html

Students
This monastery has about 120 students and staff members. Of them, around 70 students are from Assam and Mon Tawang. In these places, children face great difficulty going to school, due to lack of means of transportation. Moreover, the parents of those children have great faith in Dharma, and the children themselves are greatly interested in monk's life. Some senior lamas from our monastery visited those places several times and collected 10-20 children in several batches, one after another, as students of this monastery. There are also around 30 monks from Outer Mongolia. They and their families are devout followers of Buddhism, and the children consider monk's life as a great dignity. Twelve amongst them are orphans. They are between 6-18 years old. Around 20 monks are newcomers from Tibet, and all of them have come to India, leaving their homeland behind, to enjoy the basic human rights (including the freedom of speech).

http://www.jonangmonasteryshimla.com/Students.html


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