white robes

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

white robes

Postby befriend » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:04 pm

does anyone wear white on uposatha days, or have made or bought a white robe? what is the symbolism of this, and the purpose. thanks. metta, befriend.
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Re: white robes

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:15 pm

Hi befriend,

I have in the past and still do sometimes. I have a set of white clothes that I launder separately (for obvious reasons). I wouldn't feel comfortable wearing robes even though I do live in the Village because I feel that I would attract more attention than it's worth. Also, it might not go over so well in Midtown where I work. (Please excuse all of the NYC references)

The Lord Buddha speaks of lay disciples clad in white so this is the provenance and the symbolism and meaning are up to you to provide. For me it is an outward sign that I'm am doing something slightly out of the ordinary and, due to the nature of white clothes, I end up taking much more care of what I do in general. Whatever you decide to do with this I wish you all the best!
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Re: white robes

Postby befriend » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:21 pm

i think that would like put my head in a meditative mood, what we dress like defenitely affects our minds. are there any sites that sell theravadan white robes, there are alot of zen lay robes but i dont want that. i dont live in the city so it wouldnt really matter if i wore a white robe on a uposatha day.
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Re: white robes

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:37 pm

well, I used to wear them every day, however now I am taking a rest from it, so to speak.

Wearing robes isn't practical for everyone and does attract unwanted attention at times, wearing white clothes are the norm, I used Thai Fisherman Trousers, and I used to have a long indian style shirt, but dont know where I left it so it is no longer able to use it.
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Re: white robes

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:43 pm

Cittasanto wrote:well, I used to wear them every day, however now I am taking a rest from it, so to speak.

Wearing robes isn't practical for everyone and does attract unwanted attention at times, wearing white clothes are the norm, I used Thai Fisherman Trousers, and I used to have a long indian style shirt, but dont know where I left it so it is no longer able to use it.


Yup, me too. I have an extra shirt if you need it. :tongue:
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-Dhp. 183

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Re: white robes

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Jan 24, 2012 4:56 pm

where did you get yours (brand name) as I can not remember the company name on it as I got it from a friend
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: white robes

Postby Hickersonia » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:12 pm

I think I'd have a hard time being able to work in anything white... robe or otherwise. Working in a warehouse, I imagine the dust and other dirty things I have to work with would be enough to ruin anything solid-white on it's first wearing. :-/

Sounds like an interesting outward symbol of what one has going on inside, but definitely difficult to apply to certain livelihoods.
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Re: white robes

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:31 pm

Cittasanto wrote:where did you get yours (brand name) as I can not remember the company name on it as I got it from a friend


One is from a site called Shukr.com and the other I bought off eBay.
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

Uposatha Observance Club:http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=148031379279&v=info
Kiva-Theravada Buddhists:http://www.kiva.org/team/theravada_buddhists
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Re: white robes

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:32 pm

Hickersonia wrote:I think I'd have a hard time being able to work in anything white... robe or otherwise. Working in a warehouse, I imagine the dust and other dirty things I have to work with would be enough to ruin anything solid-white on it's first wearing. :-/

Sounds like an interesting outward symbol of what one has going on inside, but definitely difficult to apply to certain livelihoods.


Hickersonia,

Sometimes I just try to wear a white undershirt. That might be an option for you. :anjali:
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

Uposatha Observance Club:http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=148031379279&v=info
Kiva-Theravada Buddhists:http://www.kiva.org/team/theravada_buddhists
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Re: white robes

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Jan 24, 2012 5:37 pm

Hickersonia wrote:I think I'd have a hard time being able to work in anything white... robe or otherwise. Working in a warehouse, I imagine the dust and other dirty things I have to work with would be enough to ruin anything solid-white on it's first wearing. :-/

Sounds like an interesting outward symbol of what one has going on inside, but definitely difficult to apply to certain livelihoods.


Certainly, it isn't for everyone.

but to further what Khalil said earlier - My understanding from reading the texts is that the white clad lay followers mentioned before, wore the white clothing all the time, so may of been more dilligent practitioners not ready for whatever reason/unable to ordain due to circumstances/prohibitions.
There are certain classes of adherents that are difficult to know exactly what they done, due to the texts lack of reference, and only gloss of them. there are actually four kinds of female disciples, the lay follower, novice, X (I do not remember the name but they followed 6 precepts, which I think is still found within mahayana schools and is the five precepts and a precept on high beds/chairs if I remember) and the Bhikkhunis. the male only mention three lay, novice, & bhikkhus. but who the white clad were is anyone's guess, and men probably didn't have the 6 precept version due to social norms of the day, as I know there is speculation (at least) that they were married so had certain obligations socially/family.
one guess I had once, but think it doubtful is that they were those who couldn't ordain for some reason (other than being married) so adopted the jain style, or were originally Jains, but were satisfied with the form they had already undertaken??? but these are guesses and I do not know of any backing for them other than my own imagination.
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: white robes

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Jan 24, 2012 7:47 pm

At our Wat wearing white is a useful signal that one is either taking Uposatha seriously (usually only women do this :thinking:) or that one is on meditation retreat and therefore not talking. Which is handy because then people don't try to make eye contact or talk to you (unless they are non-Thai visitors... :?).

The white stuff I have was mostly manufactured for the purpose of playing cricket... Which can be a bit of a slow game... :meditate:

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Re: white robes

Postby cooran » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:41 pm

The Sri Lankans, Thais, Chinese and Aussies often wear white on Sundays at Dhammagiri - not a big deal, doesn't have to involve extra precepts - we all wear ''normal'' clothes and/or uniforms wherever we work/live/socialise.

with metta
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Re: white robes

Postby Ytrog » Tue Jan 24, 2012 8:59 pm

While I was a guest in a monastery none of the guests wore white (me included) while we followed the eight precepts and it didn't seem to be a problem.
Suffering is asking from life what it can never give you.


mindfulness, bliss and beyond (page 8) wrote:Do not linger on the past. Do not keep carrying around coffins full of dead moments


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Re: white robes

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Jan 24, 2012 9:21 pm

Ytrog wrote:While I was a guest in a monastery none of the guests wore white (me included) while we followed the eight precepts and it didn't seem to be a problem.


it is actually discouraged for lay guests at some monasteries particularly if they have Anagarikas, as it can give the wrong image if they do something an anagarika isn't suppose to, or talk to a visitor where they can appear to be talking for the resident sangha with what is being said.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: white robes

Postby Gena1480 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 6:30 am

where can i buy white robes?
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Re: white robes

Postby appicchato » Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:01 am

Hi Gena,

What's being referred to here are not really 'robes' (as such)...anything 'white' (or even close) is seen everywhere/anywhere (at least here in Thailand)...white 'jeans' and a white T-shirt basically serve the desired purpose...anything (white/close to white) really...

Be well...

ps...(If I were asked, I would say) save your dough and don't go for the high end (or even close to) stuff offered online...
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Re: white robes

Postby cooran » Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:53 am

Bhante said: white 'jeans' and a white T-shirt


This is true of what is worn here as well, by males and females - white or near white. The females may wear slacks or a white skirt - but nothing they couldn't wear elsewhere.

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: white robes

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:35 am

cooran wrote:
Bhante said: white 'jeans' and a white T-shirt


This is true of what is worn here as well, by males and females - white or near white. The females may wear slacks or a white skirt - but nothing they couldn't wear elsewhere.

with metta
Chris

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This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: white robes

Postby Ytrog » Wed Jan 25, 2012 10:13 am

Cittasanto wrote:
Ytrog wrote:While I was a guest in a monastery none of the guests wore white (me included) while we followed the eight precepts and it didn't seem to be a problem.


it is actually discouraged for lay guests at some monasteries particularly if they have Anagarikas, as it can give the wrong image if they do something an anagarika isn't suppose to, or talk to a visitor where they can appear to be talking for the resident sangha with what is being said.

That was certainly the case, so that explains it :)
Suffering is asking from life what it can never give you.


mindfulness, bliss and beyond (page 8) wrote:Do not linger on the past. Do not keep carrying around coffins full of dead moments


If you see any unskillful speech (or other action) from me let me know, so I can learn from it.
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Re: white robes

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:50 am

I know some actually found it offensive, personally i only found it odd once, the guy had a shaved head, wearing all white... if it was one or the other no problem as far as I was concerned, but both could definitely give visitors the wrong idea, and if they had been staying for a while more so. but on Uposattha days there were some who did wear white, but they tended to be visitors.

But as for wearing robes???? a white top & trousers is best, and cost effective.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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