Monks of Thailand
Monks of Thailand Reviews
Meet a Monk Dec 01, 2009
Before going to Thailand I had never known a monk or anything about their way of life and very limited knowledge of Buddhism.
The first time I actually saw one was early one morning riding the bus from Bangkok to Kanachaburi seeing many walking along side of the road with what looked like some sort of metal bowls. When I arrived at the Legacy River Kwai I spoke to the Hotel manager asking questions about what I saw. He did his best to explained but I learned about it first hand.
This was an insightful experience for my first exposure. Thanks to a friend from the USA that happen to be in Chiang Mai (who I haven't seen in many years) took me to a temple where I met 2 monks and spent some time speaking to one who spoke pretty good English. The other one (Ajhan Gla Jit) I had an interpreter that translated for me on another visit.
I learned many things, among them was the about some of the precepts, different Buddha images and there meaning, more about the Bodhi tree, and some of what life is like for a Monk living at the temples.
On a visit to Bangkok I went to Wat Mahathat where I met Ajhan Charan (whom I spoke to on the phone before leaving Chiang Mai...thanks to my friend) and spent several days with him as a student. I was privileged to study meditation and a little bit about Buddhism.
One obvious point is that Monks are held in high regard in Thailand and I witnessed that first hand when I did morning alms carrying the monk's food. It happen to be a Buddha holiday and I was blown away with all the contributions the community made with food, candles, incense, flowers and money. At that time of morning there were many Monks walking the street of Bangkok. Some walked alone and others with several other monks and farang. Very humbling experience.
My intent for part of my next trip is to live in a temple among the Monks for at least two weeks for a deeper understanding.
Part of the Thailand 2009 travel blog
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