Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

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Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Oct 11, 2010 3:36 am

http://www.buddhistchannel.tv/index.php ... 69,0,0,1,0

In this article he apparently talks of some of the problems with scandals and the relationships between monks and lay people, but was that the reason he disrobed or are there other reasons?

He was pretty famous as a monk, writing several articles and papers.

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby Ben » Mon Oct 11, 2010 3:44 am

Sad news.
Thanks David for sharing it.
kind regards

Ben
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: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby Dan74 » Mon Oct 11, 2010 4:00 am

He echoes some of the concerns expressed in The Broken Buddha. I've heard a number of other Thai monks speak of good monks being "spoiled" by the pampering of the lay devotees. Of course not all do. Some are genuinely grateful and convert this gratitude into an increased sense of responsibility to their practice.

The question to me is whether there is a reform that would be more conducive to good practice and solid ethics.
_/|\_

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby cooran » Mon Oct 11, 2010 4:05 am

Hello David, Ben,

He disrobed over three years ago, and stood for election (and lost, I think??) when all the hoo-ha was going on about Thaksin, and his corruption. Remember one of the stand-offs between the Reds and the Yellows?

Dr. Mano Mettanando Laohavanich (Mettanando Bhikkhu):
Dr. Mano Mettanando Laohavanich is one of the most outstanding international figures in the Buddhist World. He is well known for his writing and his unique interpretation of the Tipitaka, the canonical literature of Buddhism. After graduating from Chulalongkorn University in Thailand, he went to Oxford University and Harvard Divinity School for advanced studies in Medical Ethics, and finally earned his doctorate from Hamburg University.

Before disrobing in August, 2007-- with a determination to reform Buddhism in Thailand -- Dr. Mano Mettanando Laohavanich was a Buddhist monk and a doctor, one of the most educated and outspoken monks in Thailand. Besides, he was also one of the few people in monastic communities who made efforts to promote human rights, gender equality, and the Rights of the Child. In one of his published works titled “Was the Lord Buddha a sexist?” he tried to uphold justice for women in Buddhism.

Dr. Mano Mettanando Laohavanich is still involved with the largest interfaith and inter-religious organization affiliated with the UN, WCRP (World Conference on Religion and Peace), serving as the Advisor to the Secretary General of WCRP for the Buddhist Affairs, and the main representative of WCRP to the UN office in Bangkok, ESCAP. Currently, he is not only a politician running for a ministerial position in the upcoming general election in December, but also in charge of the International Affairs of the Chart Thai Party in Thailand.
http://cc.bingj.com/cache.aspx?q=Dr.+Ma ... 5,37d3430a

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby cooran » Mon Oct 11, 2010 4:26 am

And another old article:

91 ARIZONA MURDERS

First as a monk and then as a layman, Mano Laohavanich has been fighting for justice for Johnathan Doody, no matter what he has to sacrifice.

Mano: Believes Doody a scapegoat
Seventeen years ago Mr Mano, then known as Mettanando Bhikkhu, was abbot of the Dhammakaya International Society of California, or Wat Dhammakaya California.
When Doody was accused of the shocking murder of nine people, including six monks, a novice and a nun, at Wat Promkunaram in Phoenix on Aug 10, 1991, Mr Mano was convinced the teenager with US citizenship but born in Thailand was being made a scapegoat by US authorities.
"There were no witnesses from the Thai community to tell the court of the cultural aspects of the facts. It was inconceivable that a person born of Thai parents would commit such a crime against monks," he said.
The assembly of Thai monks appointed Mettanando Bhikkhu to look into the case.
He began researching the family background of Doody, the stepson of an American father, and looking into the way the US police took legal action against him. He found evidence to suggest Doody was the victim of an unfair investigation by some police officers.
He decided to make his findings public, writing articles that were published in both Thai and US newspapers. People's opinions were divided on the issue.

He gave testimony in the US court as a defence witness and returned to Thailand to seek additional help. Senior monks in Thailand refused to help, so he met then-prime minister Chuan Leekpai.
Mr Mano's efforts to help Doody were headlined in the Thai media and prompted the government to set up a committee to look into the matter.
Mr Mano said it was a race against time, because Doody could be facing a death sentence. Doody's supporters finally asked Alan Dershowitz, a professor of law at Harvard University, to lead the defence. The money to hire such a famous legal consultant was raised by four temples in Thailand, which drew criticism from some senior monks. They said the money could be better spent on charity activities for the needy at temples in remote areas of Thailand.
"Everyone viewed me as a fool for exceeding my authority and defying my teachers' warnings," said Mr Mano.
"I did the right thing, but I faced the pain," he said.

His efforts were costly. Many Thai people in Arizona were angry with him, accusing him of causing a division in the Thai community.
He was also blacklisted by senior monks in Thailand. After leaving the Dhammakaya International Society of California, Mettanando Bhikkhu stayed in several temples in Bangkok but finally left the monkhood, which had been his life for 25 years.

He ran in the general election last year under the Chart Thai banner but failed to win a seat.

Now (2008) aged 52, he works as a spiritual consultant - but he still follows the Doody case.
http://www.bangkokpost.com/081208_News/ ... news13.php
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby Hanzze » Mon Oct 11, 2010 7:00 am

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby bazzaman » Mon Oct 11, 2010 2:09 pm

.
Last edited by bazzaman on Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby Individual » Mon Oct 11, 2010 4:10 pm

Ben wrote:Sad news.
Thanks David for sharing it.
kind regards

Ben

Do you consider it sad when you read about monks being disrobed in the suttas or just this one?

And does that sadness come from compassion or pity?

Dan74 wrote:He echoes some of the concerns expressed in The Broken Buddha. I've heard a number of other Thai monks speak of good monks being "spoiled" by the pampering of the lay devotees. Of course not all do. Some are genuinely grateful and convert this gratitude into an increased sense of responsibility to their practice.

The question to me is whether there is a reform that would be more conducive to good practice and solid ethics.

Transparency.

Such immorality does not happen out in the open because of the risk of social reprisal.

Let all financial transactions be completely transparent: Every bank deposit and withdrawal, every credit card statement, every paycheck.
The best things in life aren't things.

The Diamond Sutra

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby cooran » Mon Oct 11, 2010 7:08 pm

bazzaman wrote:The former Ven. Dr. Mettanando wrote an article , published in the Bangkok Post, entitled "How the Buddha Died". I happened to read the Post that day, and remember being very impressed by it. The attempt to diagnose the cause of death based upon scriptural descriptions of the symptoms appealed to my love of detective novels.
I later read that there was a lot of criticism of this article by some Buddhist organisations on the ground that it was disrespectful of the Buddha.
Here's a link to the article:
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebdha192.htm


Thanks for this link bazzaman ¬ I used to have it, and then bought a new computer and could never locate it again.
.....I've actually never seen any criticism whatsoever of this article -

with metta
Chris
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---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby Viriya » Wed Oct 13, 2010 2:25 pm

I am truly saddened to hear this. Dr. Mano Laohavanich was nearly solely responsible for maintaining my faith in the Thai monastic sangha. His discerning and well-educated writings were always of a quality I was proud to show to curious non-Buddhists with medical and philosophical backgrounds. His voice of support was a beacon of hope for women within the Theravadin sangha. And for me, personally, back when I was hoping to also complete my medical degree before entering monastic life, he was a model for how I should view the role of the medically qualified in the monastic community.

When the truly dedicated monks abandon the monastic life, what does that leave for laypeople? The purveyors of amulets, the drawers of sakyant tattoos, the astrologers and the charlatans. We get stuck with the monks who eat after midday, use money, and keep mistresses, bringing shame to us all. :cry: :cry: :cry: Why don't THEY all disrobe? When people see monks behaving in such a fashion, and are uneducated about the tenets of Buddhism, there's little wonder why Buddhists turn to Christianity or Islam. Oh, woe, woe, woe! :cry: :cry: :cry: Whatever happened to the sangha of the noble ones?

Supatipanno Bhagavato sâvaka sangho
Of good conduct is the Order of the Disciples of the Blessed One.
Uju patipanno Bhagavato sâvaka sangho
Of upright conduct is the Order of the Disciples of the Blessed One.
Ñâya patipanno Bhagavato sâvaka sangho
Of wise conduct is the Order of the Disciples of the Blessed One.
Sâmîci patipanno Bhagavato sâvaka sangho
Of dutiful conduct is the Order of the Disciples of the Blessed One.
Yadidam cattâri purisa yugâni attha purisa puggalâ
That is to say : the Four Pairs of Men, the Eight Types of Persons;
esa Bhagavato sâvaka sangho
this Sangha of the Blessed One's disciples
âhuneyyo pâhuneyyo
is worthy of offerings, is worthy of hospitality,
dakkhineyyo añjali-karanîyo
is worthy of gifts, is worthy of reverential salutation,
anuttaram puññakkhettam lokassâ'ti.
as an incomparable field of merit for the world.

I'd like to think such a sangha still exists in the world -and in truth, I know it does. :anjali: :smile:

The best way to stop middle-aged and older women from treating monks like sons and spoiling them is the reinstatement of bhikkhuni ordination: otherwise women will continue to feel they must look after monks to the point of ridiculousness so they can make merit and get reborn as a man so they can become a monk. I certainly feel this is the case within my own Buddhist community.
I'm not very good at right speech, although I try, so please guide and correct me if necessary so I don't make bad kamma for myself and cause others to be annoyed. (=

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby Individual » Wed Oct 13, 2010 7:15 pm

Viriya wrote: Dr. Mano Laohavanich was nearly solely responsible for maintaining my faith in the Thai monastic sangha.

I don't think that's true, because you also have to give credit to the Buddha, for making teachings so wonderfully easy to have confidence in.
The best things in life aren't things.

The Diamond Sutra

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Oct 13, 2010 7:45 pm

Dear Viriya,
Viriya wrote:I am truly saddened to hear this. Dr. Mano Laohavanich was nearly solely responsible for maintaining my faith in the Thai monastic sangha.

Perhaps I am misreading your post, but I'm puzzled that you seem to be making such a generalization about the Thai and Thai-trained Sangha. It is undeniable that one can observe some rather dodgy members of the Sangha in Thailand. Anyone who has eyes can see that.

In my opinion there are many, many, outstanding Bhikkhus in Thailand, or trained in Thailand, worthy of respect.

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby cooran » Wed Oct 13, 2010 8:19 pm

Hello viriya,

And, even if there are many dodgy monks around the world, it is just the way things are during what is the period of the Decline of the Sasana.

All the more reason to practice diligently.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/dhammastu ... sage/11275
Anagatavamsa
http://www.mircea-eliade.com/from-primi ... n/189.html

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby pilgrim » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:07 am

I know little about the Dhammakaya organisation and have no issues with them. But in the past, I have read many posts here which are highly critical of the organisation. So I'm quite surprised no one here seems to hold Dr Mettanando's past leadership postion with this organisation against him.

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby cooran » Thu Nov 04, 2010 7:50 pm

Hello pilgrim,

He left after failing to reform Dhammakaya movement.

Dissident monk Phra Mettanando, who after failing in his reform efforts left the Dhammakaya movement, subsequently exposed, from an insiders point of view, how it had become a big business with worldly ambitions.
http://cc.bingj.com/cache.aspx?q=dhamma ... a,c6a0a11b

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Nov 04, 2010 10:10 pm

cooran wrote:He left after failing to reform Dhammakaya movement.


I'm sure he has his reasons, but I wonder why he just didn't go to a different temple / organization [Nikaya] and remain a bhikkhu.

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:06 am

David N. Snyder wrote:
cooran wrote:He left after failing to reform Dhammakaya movement.


I'm sure he has his reasons, but I wonder why he just didn't go to a different temple / organization [Nikaya] and remain a bhikkhu.

This may seem picky, but it may be relevant to point out that there are only two Nikayas in Thailand: Thammayut Nikaya and Maha Nikaya. I say this because sometimes Dhammakaya is assumed to be a third Nikaya, whereas it's simply a (large) grouping of Wats. In that sense it's no different from the Ajahn Chah Wats.

:anjali:
Mike

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Re: Ven. Dr. Mettanando disrobes

Postby suriyopama » Fri Feb 07, 2014 3:40 am

Dear all,

I am reopening this thread to inform that Dr. Nano (formerly Dr. Mettanando Bhikkhu) is still teaching Buddhism at the Assumption University and Center for Thai Studies, Chulalongkorn University, and serves as a member of the Ethics Committee of the Faculties of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, and Khon Kaen University.
:anjali:
He is worried about the declination of Buddhism due to the concern for money.
Dr. Nano: “Best and worst of times for Buddhism in Thailand”


I've also find this interesting article he wrote about the links between Dhammakaya and the Shinawatra family
TRT and Dhammakaya Temple - perfect match


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