Sunday, April 6, 2014

Ordination of New Monks

Several years ago I was invited to go to an ordination of new monks; invited by the monk who was teaching me meditation. I jumped at the chance. I knew two young men who were going to be ordained that day and I wanted to witness their life-changing ceremony.

Ambalangoda Maha Viharaya. Lay people participate
in ceremonies honoring Lord Buddha during the
ordination of new monks.

Ambalangoda Maha Viharaya. Taken around 4:30AM,
during the ordination ceremony. More experienced monks teach
the new monks how to don their robes. It was unusual
that they allowed a woman to photograph them, but I
knew several of the monks and they thought of me as
their mother. Hence the chief monk gave me his
permission with a nod of his head.

The room where the new monks were to be ordained.
The room was stifling hot and I finally made
my way into the center to get better photos.

The new monks were called up one by one.

Newly shaven heads. I knew two of the young men who were
ordained that day. I was quite fond of them. Sadly, after three years,
one of them disrobed due to his family's financial problems.

Offerings to Lord Buddha.

Temple stupa decorated in lights.

The two young men I knew,
in their new robes.

One with his parents. The one who had to disrobe
because of his family's problems.

Practicing tying his robe.

The other young man I knew with
his father.

Me, with a Buddhist nun.

Waiting at a small made (shop)
for the pindapata to come by.

A young boy a his bicycle, also
waiting for the pindapata.

I attracted all the young boys who
wanted me to take their photo!


More than 400 monks partook in the alms-gathering;
the pindapata, the morning after the ordination of new monks.

Beautiful sight.

The end of the pindapata where the pay people gather
for the prayers and to give gifts of food to the monks.

I wish I could have understood what the chief
monk was saying, but the atmosphere said enough.
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