Couple of Questions

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Couple of Questions

Postby wrbergman » Wed Oct 28, 2009 6:15 pm

Good Morning and Blessings Everyone.

I have a couple of general questions. If you can direct me to a site that has most of the answers that would be great. Or if you have the time to answer them here. EVEN BETTER :tongue:

1. I have seen on various sites that Theravada Monks (usually those that are considered temporary monks) are married and have families. What is the teaching of this. I further notice this usually happens with westerner's traveling out of their native country say to Thailand to accomplish this. Can a westerner accomplish this at a Theravada monastery in their own country? US?

2. Where I live (close to Moscow, ID) Are there any centers/Monasteries anyone can point me towards?
Image

Thanks in advance for your help and info. Take care.

:bow:

Wayne
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby Sanghamitta » Wed Oct 28, 2009 6:34 pm

In answer to your first question Wayne, Theravadin Buddhist Monks are never married whilst they are still monks. In fact they are required to be completely celebate. However being a Theravadin monk is not like being a Christian monk, its not for life, So sometimes people come out of the robe and some of them marry. Sometimes they continue to teach Dhamma.
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby tiltbillings » Wed Oct 28, 2009 6:59 pm

Sanghamitta wrote:In answer to your first question Wayne, Theravadin Buddhist Monks are never married whilst they are still monks. In fact they are required to be completely celebate. However being a Theravadin monk is not like being a Christian monk, its not for life, So sometimes people come out of the robe and some of them marry. Sometimes they continue to teach Dhamma.

Actually, you can be married and be a monk in Thailand; however, that does not mean living with your wife and it does not mean doing the ins-and-outs while being a monk. "Rains" monks, those who do receive full ordination and live in a vihara for the rainy season then disrobe, are sometimes married.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby cooran » Wed Oct 28, 2009 7:27 pm

Hello Tilt,

Could you provide a link that supports this? Do you mean they take the 8 or 10 precepts for a short period? I have never ever heard of this happening with married men in Thailand and would be very interested to see some literature on this.

metta
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Oct 28, 2009 10:32 pm

Greetings Wayne,

Have you tried the World Buddhist Directory?

http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/

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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Oct 29, 2009 4:30 am

Hi Chris,
Chris wrote:Could you provide a link that supports this? Do you mean they take the 8 or 10 precepts for a short period? I have never ever heard of this happening with married men in Thailand and would be very interested to see some literature on this.

I assume it happens in Thailand because it certainly happens here at our local Wat. In fact, I recall one rather touching incident when a young Thai man ordained (for a week) then his wife (complete with baby) was the first to make an offering to him.

Usually it's a 10-precept thing, but three years ago when we opened our new hall, and had a large influx of monks to do the sima stuff, I understand a number of men (many of them New Zealanders married to Thai women) became 227 precept monks for a week.

I tended to think of this as a little dodgy, but one of my teachers (Thai trained American) actually encouraged me to try it sometime. His rather interesting suggestion was to ordain here, then fly into Thailand in robes and go to a forest place for a few weeks. He assures me that this would be a life-altering experience (I can imagine the challenge and pressure of maintaining equanimity wearing the robes in Thailand: I've been his "bag carrier" on alms round in Bangkok).

Metta
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby jcsuperstar » Thu Oct 29, 2009 4:51 am

i'll probably be one of those temporary married monks, it brings merit to the family to have a son do this, and there are no sons in my wifes family. its perfectly normal (in thai culture) to ordain for a short time for reasons such as this. i'm just gonna look at it as a really long meditation retreat!
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Oct 29, 2009 6:10 am

Chris wrote:Hello Tilt,

Could you provide a link that supports this? Do you mean they take the 8 or 10 precepts for a short period? I have never ever heard of this happening with married men in Thailand and would be very interested to see some literature on this.

metta
Chris

It is what I saw when I was there, and I am talking about full ordinatiuon, which some men will do as a way of making merit for whatever reason, often having not a thing to do with actual Dhamma practice. There was a high ranking police officer that had ordained at Wat Bawon, and had just left before I arrived there and he was the object of much discussion. He did this to get merit for his mother who was gravely ill. While he was there he also had a collection of Swedish porn because it was important that he have an erection every day in order to not loose the ability of getting a stiff stiffy. This long before Viagra.

On the other hand there are those who do "rains" ordinations because they truly want to practice the Dhamma as well as they can. I met one who was, indeed, a married man. Very devout and knowledgable. After the rainy season he disrobed and returned home.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Oct 29, 2009 7:43 am

Hi Tilt,
Thank you for the reminiscences.
tiltbillings wrote:On the other hand there are those who do "rains" ordinations because they truly want to practice the Dhamma as well as they can. I met one who was, indeed, a married man. Very devout and knowledgable. After the rainy season he disrobed and returned home.

Yes, that's the reason I'd consider it: If I was convinced I would learn things that I wouldn't learn by taking 8 precepts and wearing white.

Actually, the young Thai man I mentioned above told me that he learned a huge amount in just one week, and was sorry he was not able to spend more time at it (since he had to go back to work to support his family...).

Mike
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Oct 29, 2009 7:51 am

mikenz66 wrote:Hi Tilt,
Thank you for the reminiscences.
tiltbillings wrote:On the other hand there are those who do "rains" ordinations because they truly want to practice the Dhamma as well as they can. I met one who was, indeed, a married man. Very devout and knowledgable. After the rainy season he disrobed and returned home.

Yes, that's the reason I'd consider it: If I was convinced I would learn things that I wouldn't learn by taking 8 precepts and wearing white.

Actually, the young Thai man I mentioned above told me that he learned a huge amount in just one week, and was sorry he was not able to spend more time at it (since he had to go back to work to support his family...).

Mike

One of the interesting things to learn as a monk or novice in a Buddhist country is going among the houses for food. It is utterly facsinating and humbling and fills one with gratitude for those lay people who so warmly give the monastics life every morning.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby Ben » Thu Oct 29, 2009 7:57 am

Its also something that I was planning on doing at some stage. Perhaps when the kids are a lot older and with the assent of my wife.
metta

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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby Sanghamitta » Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:07 am

We live and learn, thanks all for correcting my obviously incomplete view.

:anjali:
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Re: Couple of Questions

Postby mikenz66 » Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:13 am

Thanks again Tilt.
tiltbillings wrote:\
One of the interesting things to learn as a monk or novice in a Buddhist country is going among the houses for food. It is utterly facsinating and humbling and fills one with gratitude for those lay people who so warmly give the monastics life every morning.

Yes, that's the sort of thing I was thinking about. As I've said, I've been on alms round in Bangkok with my teacher to carry the offerings back to the Wat. And I've stopped in the middle of nowhere to make offerings to a couple of monks who obviously had walked a long way... And I've felt some of that humbling gratitude when lay people bring food to me in my kuti when on retreats.

So I have a vague idea of how it would feel, but of course the actual experience would probably be different from that...

Mike
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