What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Discussion of ordination, the Vinaya and monastic life. How and where to ordain? Bhikkhuni ordination etc.
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Anders
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What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Postby Anders » Wed Jun 09, 2010 6:28 am

This is a bit more generic than inquiring about the practicalities of ordination, but I thought it might fit best in this forum anyway.

At the moment I am very interested in learning more about the demographics of western renunciants.

I am presuming white middle class makes up the overwhelming majority of western renunciants. But in addition to this, I am curious as to:

What age range is most typical?

What is the spread in education? Typically academic, or no real general trends to identify here?

What about where they ordain. It is quite possible to ordain in the west these days but how many choose to still go to Thailand, Sri Lanka or Burma to train in a more native Buddhist setting?

What's the broad drop-out rate after five years? How about ten?

Is it common or rare for people to go tradition-hopping? Ordain in one tradition then change to another, etc.

If anyone know of any studies about this I'd be very grateful. But I equally welcome broad impressions from anyone who have been around the block to gain an impression about these things or heard about it through the Dhamma grapevine.

hamishmarshal
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Re: What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Postby hamishmarshal » Wed Jun 09, 2010 2:08 pm

This is a very complicated to answer because there are number of people tend towards the Ordination in the west. Tending to the buddhhaism and towards the religious is becoming the major issue in todays life and especially in the educated ategory. The males are tending to the ordination in the west in compare to the womans.

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Sobeh
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Re: What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Postby Sobeh » Wed Jun 09, 2010 2:54 pm

"In 2007 the first comprehensive Survey was carried out of the 1,400 members of the Western Buddhist Order."

Just a small study, for what it's worth.

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gavesako
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Re: What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Postby gavesako » Wed Jun 09, 2010 5:56 pm

A few years ago one member of the Amaravati sangha (disciples of Ajahn Sumedho mainly) made such a statistic, which I read but don't have the details now. But the drop-out rate was pretty high, some after the first 2-3 years, then after 10 years, then after 16-18 years, and even later -- so that in the end, there are just a few survivors from each generation. And yes, it is mainly Anglo-Saxon men who ordain, with a few other nationalities mixed in, but only few South Europeans for some reason (too easy-going?). Education does not play such a big role, but there might be a somewhat greater percentage of degrees in the Western Sangha than typical population.
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
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Anders
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Re: What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Postby Anders » Thu Jun 10, 2010 8:46 am

gavesako wrote:A few years ago one member of the Amaravati sangha (disciples of Ajahn Sumedho mainly) made such a statistic, which I read but don't have the details now.


Bhante,

Would this be for public consumption as well? Any way I might be able to see it?

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gavesako
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Re: What kind of people tend to ordain in the west?

Postby gavesako » Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:01 am

Let me find out next week...
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts


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