Racism in Asia, Myanmar, and Monasteries

Racism in Asia, Myanmar and Monasteries I remember when I came to Sri Lanka, in 2007 and I met a monk who said he was from Slovenia. “Slovenia? What kind of country is that?” I told him that I had memorized the world map in school, but I didn’t remember any “Slovenia.” There happened to be a large world map in the other room and he called me over to see it. He pointed to his country and a bunch of other new countries a few centimeters away. At that time, I had been a monk for 6 years and […]

Inspiration, move me brightly

Inspiration is like a bright star that shines among the dim.  In Monastic life, there are few monasteries or monks that really inspire people.  Following the vinaya (or rules) inspires people.  It is tried and tested. This was an old picture when I was in a vinaya monastery that follows all of the rules including the “basic ten rules” that a 7 year old beginner monk is supposed to follow.   “Varanasi” is the name of the monastery which is a  learning monastery that was started by an Ethnic Nepalese Myanmar community.  If I do not return to Hawaii in June, […]

Visit to Varanasi Monastery, Mingaladon

  A Brief Visit to Varanasi Monastery, Mingaladon I had a few more days before I was allowed to arrive at ITBM University (I am there now). Very close by is one of my favorite monasteries in the Yangon District. Actually, there are very few choices for monks who follow the monk’s rules (Vinaya) if you want to live with like minded vinaya monks. Even though Pa-Auk is a vinaya monastery, there is not the same consistency of monks who have vinaya in their hearts.  Local monks often come for meditation retreats and often “temporarily” follow the rules “while they are […]

Pa-Auk Monastery in Mudon

Kyownpine Pa-Auk Branch Monastery in Mudon, Myanmar. I have moved to Yorgo Sayadaw ‘s new monastery called Kyownpine. The Yorgo Sayadaw read my first ordination transaction 15 years ago and invited me to come. He speaks no English, but we have fun together. Such a lovely place, lots of Metta here. Good views, cool at night (75 degrees), nice kuti. This place is suitable for foreigners to live at complete with proper vinaya (monks’ rules). The food is collected from village Pindapata. I have been helping collect the food with three other monks. A truck follows us and sometimes up […]