picture of the day

Traveling monks

11 Comments

A group of Buddhist monks head to the shinkansen tracks at JR Shin Yokohama Station on Monday morning.

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11 Comments
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Looking forward to some magnetic levitation, perhaps?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sadu Sadu !!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hopefully, on the right track (!)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Often see buddhist monks on my travels around Japan and Asia. Must say that they often don't seem to be taking the poverty aspect of Buddhism to heart (Business class anyone?/).

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Buddhism does not value poverty (or any other causes of suffering). Christians do value poverty of the followers (but not that of the priests and pastors, any visit to Vatican would tell you so much)

1 ( +3 / -2 )

To be honest, Buddhism and Christianity are both broad terms and both contain a mosaic of varying world views and moral standards. So talking about entire Christianity or Buddhism is just irrelevant. Doctrines are nothing if people do not wish to act according to what they say. I'm certain that beside a small group of people who are actually dedicated to what they believe in and have no life beside their own faith, people are just conformists who go with the mainstream without having any actual reflection about their faith.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

May they have a long , healthy and free life . I see no evil here.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Kaerimashita: "Must say that they often don't seem to be taking the poverty aspect of Buddhism to heart (Business class anyone?/)."

True. As you likely know, and probably not coincidentally, the word 'kaiseki' comes from the old, simple lifestyle of Buddhist monks where they kept a heated stone for warmth and ate simple vegetarian fare. Now 'kaiseki' has quite another meaning in terms of cuisine and atmosphere (in society in general), and I know monks who live very rich lives. The life of a lot of monks in some sects here might also explain why the JapanEnglish word 'stoic' has nothing at all to do with actual Stoicism.

As to the picture, no offense to Mark Buckton but I find it a little bland for a photo of the day. Not the content (ie. monks travelling in a shinkansen station), but the framing and that they have their backs to us, but are turned and talking, etc. That's just me being finicky, though.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They walked with normal people so maybe their tickets were paid by those normal people. If I am not wrong, judging by their clothes, they maybe just Samanera (pre-monk). Theravadan Monks cannot carry money and gold. So whenever their travel, they have to occupy with normal people to pay their ticket or they have to walk. They also cannot sleep in luxury bed, so if they stay in hotel, they just sleep on the floor. Usually normal people paid or bought luxury things to the monk in hope that their would get more in return. Like the farmer would planted in fertile soil in order to produce a good harvest. So the monks are like fertile soil if they followed Vinaya and practice Buddha's teaching. After all, it will back to the monks themselves. And as normal people, we could choose to plant in fertile soil or bad soil.

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Those reddish-orange robe are kasaya, common among the Theravada monks of SE Asia. I wonder if they are in Japan for sight-seeing or on Buddhist exchanges.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wonder if they are in Japan for sight-seeing or on Buddhist exchanges.

I think they came here on a Japan's government program such as JICA.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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