Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Discussion of ordination, the Vinaya and monastic life. How and where to ordain? Bhikkhuni ordination etc.
Lost1984
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Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by Lost1984 »

Want to find a monastery that does not bow to statues. :buddha2:
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by DNS »

Lost1984 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 3:38 am Want to find a monastery that does not bow to statues. :buddha2:
What do you have against bowing to statues? Perhaps some prior cultural conditioning? I as ask that because I came from a culture that highly shunned bowing to statues, so it took me some time to get over that, myself.

I don't know of any Buddhist tradition that doesn't bow to statues, other than the strictly vipassana secular type groups, non-monastic.
BrokenBones
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by BrokenBones »

I've yet to visit one that pointed a gun at your head and demand you 'bow'... just don't do it if it feels wrong.

I find it's a time for reflection of the three refuges.
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by TRobinson465 »

Some secular meditation groups maybe. Of the various temples ive visited the closest is the Dharma Bum Temple in San Diego. The teacher bows but not the students in the intro class. Problem is they are pretty one of a kind so unless you move there or happen to live there you're out of luck since you can't find them elsewhere.

I would suggest finding a secular meditation group and working your way toward getting used to bowing over time. Remember that bowing in Asia is different than bowing in the West. In thailand they literally bow to say hi to each other, and kids will often bow to thier parents or teachers. I know in western culture its a bit weird cuz we see the gesture as more of a gesture of worship. but in Asia its more of just a respectful gesture everyone uses with each other so its not seen as quite the same when bowing to statues in Asia as it is seen in the West. Similar to how americans often find French and italian ppl kissing on the cheek very weird cuz its associated with romance here but it is just a normal gesture for Europeans, bowing doesn't have the same connation in Asia as it does in the West. If you ever take Asian martial arts like karate they will bow to each other during sparring and whatnot. Ur better off just getting used to it and recognizing its a cultural difference, with a different cultural meaning than what you're used to, than trying to find a karate class with no bowing.
"Do not have blind faith, but also no blind criticism" - the 14th Dalai Lama

"At Varanasi, in the Deer Park at Isipatana, the Blessed One has set in motion the unexcelled Wheel of Dhamma that cannot be stopped by brahmins, devas, Maras, Brahmas or anyone in the cosmos." -Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta

"Go forth, monks, for the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, out of compassion for the world, for the welfare, the good and the happiness of gods and men. Let no two of you go in the same direction." - First Khandhaka, Chapter 11, Vinaya.
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by JamesTheGiant »

I think there is no monastery that does not bow to a statue. Sorry.
TRobinson465 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 4:44 am
. Remember that bowing in Asia is different than bowing in the West. In thailand they literally bow to say hi to each other, and kids will often bow to thier parents or teachers. I know in western culture its a bit weird cuz we see the gesture as more of a gesture of worship. but in Asia its more of just a respectful gesture everyone uses with each other so its not seen as quite the same when bowing to statues in Asia as it is seen in the West. Similar to how americans often find French and italian ppl kissing on the cheek very weird cuz its associated with romance here but it is just a normal gesture for Europeans, bowing doesn't have the same connation in Asia as it does in the West. If you ever take Asian martial arts like karate they will bow to each other during sparring and whatnot. Ur better off just getting used to it and recognizing its a cultural difference, with a different cultural meaning than what you're used to, than trying to find a karate class with no bowing.
Yes, this is so important for a westerner to understand. It's about respect, not worship.

And you don't have to bow if you don't want to, even if everyone else is bowing.

If someone whispers at you to bow, you can tell them later that you don't feel comfortable doing that because of your upbringing.

Maybe someday you can let go of that, and learn to enjoy showing respect by bowing.
Lost1984
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by Lost1984 »

I was just curious.

Buddha never said to bow to statues.

Bible says something like, "Sorrow/Pity to those who bow to idols which cannot speak and cannot hear and do nothing for you in return. The lord is in his temple."

:meditate:
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by mikenz66 »

Hi Lost1984,

Perhaps this interview with Ajahn Sumedho is relevant:
viewtopic.php?p=310828#p310828

:heart:
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by Dhammanando »

Lost1984 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 3:38 am Want to find a monastery that does not bow to statues. :buddha2:
In Thailand I know of only two.

One is Wat Suan Mokkh of the late Ajahn Buddhadāsa, where they bow to a giant boulder instead. (Or at least they used to in the 1980's; I don't know what their current practice is).

The other is the controversial Santi Asoke group, founded by the now-defrocked monk Phra Phothirak. They don't bow to anything.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santi_Asoke

https://web.archive.org/web/20110708104 ... asoke.html
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by TRobinson465 »

Lost1984 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 7:41 am I was just curious.

Buddha never said to bow to statues.

Bible says something like, "Sorrow/Pity to those who bow to idols which cannot speak and cannot hear and do nothing for you in return. The lord is in his temple."

:meditate:
Again this is just a cultural difference. In israel bowing was more of a form of worship. In asia that's not the case. Bowing in asia is basically the same as Americans who lower thier head to honor fallen veterans or leave flowers at memorials. They don't do it to "get something in return" from the dead veterans. it's just to show respect.
"Do not have blind faith, but also no blind criticism" - the 14th Dalai Lama

"At Varanasi, in the Deer Park at Isipatana, the Blessed One has set in motion the unexcelled Wheel of Dhamma that cannot be stopped by brahmins, devas, Maras, Brahmas or anyone in the cosmos." -Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta

"Go forth, monks, for the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, out of compassion for the world, for the welfare, the good and the happiness of gods and men. Let no two of you go in the same direction." - First Khandhaka, Chapter 11, Vinaya.
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by Crazy cloud »

Lost1984 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 3:38 am Want to find a monastery that does not bow to statues. :buddha2:
What are you able to bow to, other than a statue?
If you didn't care
What happened to me
And I didn't care for you

We would zig-zag our way
Through the boredom and pain
Occasionally glancing up through the rain

Wondering which of the
Buggers to blame
And watching for pigs on the wing
- Roger Waters
Lost1984
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by Lost1984 »

Crazy cloud wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 3:42 pm
Lost1984 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 3:38 am Want to find a monastery that does not bow to statues. :buddha2:
What are you able to bow to, other than a statue?
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by dharmacorps »

Lost1984 wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 7:41 am
Buddha never said to bow to statues.
Lots of things done in monasteries, and Buddhism at large include things the Buddha never said. This doesn't mean it isn't in line with dhamma.
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Post by sunnat »

The benefits of bowing are twofold. To others and to self.

Neither statues, Arhats nor Dead Buddhas need your respect or adoration. They are beyond such things.

If people see a person respecting or thanking another or a representation of something they might become curious and perhaps ask a question. For example : 'why does this otherwise self respecting person debase in such a way' thus giving an opportunity to talk about the dhamma and how it helps to lessen the grip of self-ishness.

This obviously benefits the person bowing as well as it helps to think about the dhamma.

As well as this, the person debasing the ego (which often needs to be debased) by being seen to be venerating someone or an inanimate object, the very act of doing so when everything held dear for so long tells you not to do so begins to reveal the underlying tendencies the stand in the way of reaching the goal.
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Re:

Post by Sam Vara »

sunnat wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:34 pm The benefits of bowing are twofold. To others and to self.

Neither statues, Arhats nor Dead Buddhas need your respect or adoration. They are beyond such things.

If people see a person respecting or thanking another or a representation of something they might become curious and perhaps ask a question. For example : 'why does this otherwise self respecting person debase in such a way' thus giving an opportunity to talk about the dhamma and how it helps to lessen the grip of self-ishness.

This obviously benefits the person bowing as well as it helps to think about the dhamma.

As well as this, the person debasing the ego (which often needs to be debased) by being seen to be venerating someone or an inanimate object, the very act of doing so when everything held dear for so long tells you not to do so begins to reveal the underlying tendencies the stand in the way of reaching the goal.
:goodpost: I liked this. Insightful about debasing the ego.
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Re: Where to find a monastery that does not bow to statues?

Post by DooDoot »

Dhammanando wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:15 am I don't know what their current practice is
There are statues of Bhikkhu Buddhadasa that can be bowed to.
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