Pa-Auk Lockdown #2

Recently, I have been getting a few messages wishing me safety and wellbeing with the current news floating around the world about events in Myanmar. I can assure you that our lives have not changed much even with the pandemic. Yes, we have been locked down for nearly a year or maybe longer, but monastery life is pretty much the monastery life. The only thing that is different is we wear masks around other monks who seem to care about masks and lately that mask population has been less and less. We have been on strict lockdown, so the odds […]

How I Got My Name

Exactly twenty years ago today (February 7, 2001), I followed through with my decision to ordain with lifelong intentions. Although I am only 14 vassa because of a re-ordination ceremony, this day means more to me than my very own birthday. This day was also the day I got my name. Today, I not only have the monk name Bhikkhu Subhūti, but I also have an actual legal passport name of Bhante Bhikkhu Subhuti as well as other essential ID’s too. I remember when I came to Pa-Auk still dressed in white anagārika robes that I got at Wat Pah […]

Have You Eaten Yet?

In 1993, I visited China with five lucky School of Technology students at my University. Before going, I asked around for some cool things to say and “Chī le ma?” or “Have you eaten yet?” was the phrase I learned besides asking for the toilet. It does not mean what it literally says. Instead, it means a little bit like “How are you?”, but more casual like, “How’s it going?” It sounds funny in English and that is why I say it in English to my Chinese monastic friend when I see him. Recently, one of my friends who is […]