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 […]

7 Lockdown Suggestions From A Monk

These days, the lockdowns are in full swing. The question is, “What do you do with your time?” Perhaps you are out of work, or retired like my parents. What do you do? As a monk, lockdowns or “stay at home” orders are not much of a big deal unless a medical problem arises. Since April, we have been on a more serious lockdown to the point where it has affected the food variety to mostly long shelf-life food items. The monastery built a fence and gate to keep people out at the entrance, yet, 6 months later, I have […]

Turning 50

Today I turned fifty years of age. A few months ago, I was really happy about it but then as health problems piled up a few weeks ago (which ended up being a 2.5 week allergic reaction), I was unpleasantly reminded that our bodies were only given 40-year warranties and I was ten years overdue. As I told my parents this newly discovered truth that a birthday just means I’m getting older with more problems and eventually death, my father said, “Bhante, we have been 30 years ahead of you with this same stuff.” Old Buddhist wisdom. Old age, sickness, […]

Where to Ordain?

The short answer is: If you are looking for vinaya (places that don’t touch money), and you believe in the commentaries and Abhidhamma and want to meditate, you have two choices, Pa-Auk and Na-Uyana. If you don’t believe in the commentaries and Abhidhamma, you are best off at a Thai Forest Monastery like Ajahn Chah (Mahanikaya) or Ajahn Maha Boowa (Dhammayut) monasteries. There are other places that I might recommend too. This is SBS (SasanaRakkha Buddhist Sanctuary) in Malaysia and The International Institute of Theravāda in Sri Lanka. I will mention them later. I often get asked advice about where […]