Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Discussion of ordination, the Vinaya and monastic life. How and where to ordain? Bhikkhuni ordination etc.

Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby Dhammakamo » Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:59 am

Thanks. I have heard of mahanikaya bhikkhus re-ordaining. I see re-ordination as a ridiculous thing born out of ego anyway.
"When an evil-man, seeing you practise goodness, comes and maticiously insults you, you should patiently endure it and not feel angry with him, for the evil-man is insulting himself by trying to insult you" - The Buddha
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby fabianfred » Mon Sep 26, 2011 8:52 pm

Hello there fellow Bhante
I am an English monk living at a temple in Fang.... http://wikimapia.org/#lat=19.8695957&lo ... 18&l=0&m=b
I have a companion who is from New Zealand... Phra Chutawongso who has a blog.. http://watsriboenruang.wordpress.com/about-3/
Our temple hosted the MonkforaMonth.com project for a couple of years, but that has now finished. We now do the same on our own and will have a website up soon.
Handling money is always a difficult matter for monks. Unlike at WPN we do not have any method set up for lay comittee members to handle all money, and the other monks do so, so we also accept money. Lay-people often slip a few coins into our alms bowl and we do not want to annoy them by refusing.
We do use the money to help refugee children at a school near the Burma border.
I have heard that WPN insists upon the reordination of monks coming from outside their system, whether Mahanikaya or Dhammayut, because they have a strict passge....6 months pankow....1 year novice...then 5 years monk staying in their temple before being able to go elsewhere.
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby fabianfred » Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:37 pm

Zom wrote:I'm not a monk, but in my humble opinion, Vinaya is a usefool tool, which should be followed not in letter, but in spirit , that is - wisely, depending also on something else rather than just words, taking into account that we are not living in ancient India and very much has changed since then. Of course, it is difficult to draw a line here, and, perhaps, this line is different for everyone depending on situation. But I think it is not wise to follow all Vinaya rules in the strictest manner (Remember, that Buddha just before parinibbana offered Ananda to disable some not important rules). I know one western monk who was very-very strict in following Vinaya, he blamed other monks on Vinaya matters, and led a solitary life. Right now he is in mental hospital in Sri Lanka. Than coincides with what Ven. Dhammika writes:

I knew a monk, again an Australian, who was
constantly agonizing over this rule. He was a very restless sleeper and in the mornings he would
inevitably wake up finding that his sheet had come loose during the night and his body was
touching the bed, that is, touching Sangha property. Even when he woke up with no part touching
the bed he would worry that he might have done so during the night. One morning he was so
overwrought that he was literally on the verge of committing suicide and had I or another monk not
been with him he may well have done so. As a brief aside, I have noticed two other things about
Vinaya fundamentalists. The first is that they seem to have a higher rate of disrobing than the more
‘lax’ monks. Secondly, and this should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with psychology,
when they do disrobe they often go wild and not uncommonly even give up Buddhism altogether. It
is a case of first one extreme and then the other. The two monks mentioned above both soon
disrobed, one turned against Buddhism with a vehemence and the other gradually drifted out of it.
:coffee:

I also heard a case, that one monk from Sri Lanka came to Russia in winter. And he walked barefooted (or with sandals only), with his only robe, no sweater, no coat, nothing... It happened as a result that he died in a local hospital.


I will see how things go after I do a retreat at Suan Mokh and hopefully I'll meet some english-speaking monks whom I have karmic connections with.


Give my best regards to Bhante Hubert and Ven. Kittisaro who are on vassa over there right now :namaste:

A requirement to reach stream-entry is to have no faith in rites and rituals. If a monk allows some of the minor rules to become a ritual to the above extent then i think they are on the wrong track. Proper mindfulness should overcome these doubts.
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby Suriyopama_ » Thu Sep 29, 2011 1:40 am

Greetings Bhikkhu Dhammakamo.

Have You ever considered Wat Boonyawad in Chonburi? Ajahn Tann is a disciple of Ajahn Chah. They are very respectful forest monks.

They do not ordrain new monks at Wat Boonyawad, so I believe that you would not need to re-ordrain in order to go there; just ask permission to Ajahn Tann and to you preceptor.

http://www.watboonyawad.com/new/
http://watboonyawad.blogspot.com/
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby Zom » Thu Sep 29, 2011 11:47 am

I just learnt from my abbot that one of the late founders of my monastery had a lot of money offered to him and under circumstances, he had to accept them so as to please the laity. Whenever he accumulated a certain amount, he would buy out cows deal for slaughter, donate to school, buy out schools of fish to release them back into the sea and, etc. He would be penniless nonetheless.


This is a good option, by the way :idea:
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby morning mist » Tue Oct 04, 2011 1:16 am

Hi all,

I think in order to avoid wrong application and benefit from a practicing guideline it is important to understand the purpose behind it . I believe the practicing guideline of monastics not possessing money is to limit the bhikkhu/ni's ability to follow his/ her endless desires. When this is combined with successful meditation development it can greatly weakens 5 sense desires. This can give rise to contentment. The monastic life makes it possible to practice both because the basic necessities/ three requisites are provided. In the household life, it is not practical to practice the guideline of not possessing money therefore it was not prescribed for householders but only monastics . To apply this guideline of not possessing money alone without meditation development is not enough. I think various factors of the Eightfold path support each other to create the intended result when not leaving out any aspects.

Is it the case that the monks in WPNC or other forest tradition monasteries follow this practicing guideline and support other monks who follow this guideline?
with metta,
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby Bankei » Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:09 am

Bhante,

Go for the spirit of the rule rather than the letter. Whether you accept money in an envelop on directly it is no different, not that it really matters anyway it is how you use it and act. Whether you touch it or not is the same.

Maybe you could accept it to please the donor and then donate it to someone else.

ps. At WPN you may only learn how to follow the letter of the vinaya.
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:12 am

Bankei wrote:ps. At WPN you may only learn how to follow the letter of the vinaya.
Have you ever stayed at Wat Pah Nanachat? I have. The monks study the Pātimokkha rules in detail with a senior bhikkhu leading them through it rule by rule. It is highly improbable that any bhikkhu trained there would only be following the letter without understanding the spirit of the rule too — but you never know. Some bhikkhus may not understand in spite of it being thoroughly explained.
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby manas » Sat Oct 29, 2011 11:20 pm

Greeting Bhante,
so much good advice has been offered, I can only add that if some laypeople get angry that you won't accept money, that isn't your fault, but rather it is a reflection of the state of affairs regarding Vinaya practice in many parts of the world today. Maybe they will actually learn something from your stance...or maybe not. But either way, it is not your job to please them, but to follow the precepts as given by the Buddha. If it gives any encouragement or consolation, I find it inspiring that you are so sincerely striving to do what is right. Eventually you will find a niche somewhere, as others have pointed out, where your practice will be in harmony with the practice of others around you (and the expectations of laypeople). Until then, maybe see this as a kind of 'test of endurance', one that has earned you my respect, I might add, as you strive to maintain 'this Dhamma and Discipline'...
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Re: Questions from the Shameful Bhikkhu

Postby Bankei » Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:43 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:
Bankei wrote:ps. At WPN you may only learn how to follow the letter of the vinaya.
Have you ever stayed at Wat Pah Nanachat? I have. The monks study the Pātimokkha rules in detail with a senior bhikkhu leading them through it rule by rule. It is highly improbable that any bhikkhu trained there would only be following the letter without understanding the spirit of the rule too — but you never know. Some bhikkhus may not understand in spite of it being thoroughly explained.


Hi Bhante

Yes, I have stayed there.
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