Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Discussion of ordination, the Vinaya and monastic life. How and where to ordain? Bhikkhuni ordination etc.

Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Chi » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:49 pm

Hello Dhamma Brothers and Sisters,

I am visiting the Panditarama Forest Monastery and sitting the annual 60-day retreat.

I would like to ordain as a novice for the duration of the retreat.

A few questions regarding temporary ordination:

1. If I have money (cash, cards), basic clothes and toiletries with me, must I forfeit these permanently before ordination?
2. I've looked through some of the procedures for ordaining as a novice and they include some Pali memorization...Am I not allowed to ordain until and unless I memorize these procedures?
3. The manager of the center told me: "Please ask about ordaining when you come. It is possible but it depends on the individual. Some other US men will be ordaining too. You would need to promise to disrobe before leaving the center. But even so, it is not possible to give a flat answer. You'll need to ask Sayadaw-gyi for permission when you come here." What circumstances would prevent my being able to ordain as a novice?

Any other advice that you could give would be highly appreciated.

Humbly,
Chi
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby appicchato » Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:49 pm

Hi Chi,

Your questions are all relative to who and where...any answers given to you by anyone here, if not directly from Panditarama, are worthless...you have to get the answers from them...

Good luck... :smile:
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby householder » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:54 am

No advice to offer (though I'd like to hear about your experiences, as will be in Myanmar later this year and want to apply for a meditation visa to spend some time at Hse Main Gon, having met with Saydaw U Pandita in August who recommended I do so), but would be curious to know why you'd like to ordain as a novice and what you see as the benefits of doing so for a 60 day retreat? There's no difference to the practice or routine as far as I'm aware?
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Chi » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:35 pm

Why ordain as a novice?

Why not?

Many people in many SE Asian countries ordain temporarily for a period of time.

I don't see any negative consequences to ordaining. I feel it would remind me everyday of why I am at the retreat. Having fewer clothes to wear is part of renunciation.

There may not be a difference to the practice or routine, but I foresee a significant, if subtle, shift in mindset.
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Ytrog » Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:03 pm

I'm very curious about the first point too :anjali:
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Gena1480 » Mon Dec 26, 2011 5:27 am

Hi chi
please let us know how the retreat went
i'm interested
i have looked at the website
and one of the books there is become the owner of sasana
the owner of sasana is in Nibbana
this is a way to big chunk to chew for me at least.
there is nothing you own in samsara,
i'm trying to understand how meditation became a group activity
which is not what the Buddha taught
it is a seclusion and solitude that is requirement even for the first Jhana
listening to Dhamma, chanting, is group events.
can anyone explain to me, where such an idea took root, in Buddha teachings
i have never read anywhere in Buddha teaching that there should be group meditation.
as there anywhere in Dhamma and Discipline. where such instructions are explain.
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Chi » Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:55 am

The retreat was intense. U Pandita Sayadaw gave Dhamma talks many nights. He has extremely high standards (obviously, as he is speaking from ultimate realization) and it has humbled me greatly.

I took robes for 12 days. I encourage everybody who is serious about the Path to take robes at least temporarily. It's ego-busting. Going for the alms round in the near freezing temperature in the morning, barefoot, will knock down a person's pride quickly. I am not sure the monk's life is for me since that are some rituals, such as different ways to wear robes on certain occasions, that seem superfluous, although I am sure one could get used to it. It's probably the fear of renunciation that is arising here.

The ordination process was really simple. I asked to be ordained, they said OK, they gave me robes, I ordained as novice, I went to U Pandita Sayadaw and he became my preceptor after saying a couple of words, 13 monks gathered in a separate room and they said a bunch of Pali, and I repeated some English and Pali, THEN I was asked if I had any debt, if I was a human being, if I was a free man, if I was free from royal services, If I was a male, how old I was, who my preceptor was. I told them I have $1300 on a credit card, and it didn't seem to count as debt.

I didn't give up any of my possessions. It was sort of like "Oh, here is another temporary ordination." It makes me smile.

Meditating in a group can be powerful or it can be distracting--it probably depends on where you are on the path.

You can definitely enter the first jhana in a group setting. And, in the Buddha's time, there were many occassions when he gave talks to large groups of people. The chanting is a rite although it can be beneficial.
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Bankei » Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:11 am

Chi

Thanks for the update - was that a full ordination or novice?

Can you say more about the robe wearing. In Thailand there are 4 different ways of wearing the robe. 2 of them are very hard to accomplish too! I notice there are different styles in Burma.
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Chi » Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:10 pm

I was a novice for about an hour or so, and then a full ordination. It was sort of like, "Oh, now you are a fully ordained monk and you will be whenever you ordain next, if you decide to." No duties, no service. It's actually pretty darn cool.

Wearing robes: There is the "easy" way when one is meditating or eating. There is the "formal" way when one is listening to Dhamma talk (even the speaker dresses this way) or when one goes for an interview. There is also another special way when one is going on the almsround.

DEFINITELY takes time to get even the easy way right. I mean there are special rules on how far along the leg the bottom robe is, how many hand lengths the upper robe is from the lower robe, how the fringes should look, etc. In 12 days, I finally could do the easy way although other monks were adjusting and re-doing for me at times. The formal way I could do to the bare satisfactory level. It's definitely not made for comfort. Same with the almsround way.

Hope this helps.
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Bankei » Thu Feb 09, 2012 10:56 am

Thanks for the update Chi.

How about memorising the ordination proceedure - did you need to?

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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Chi » Thu Feb 09, 2012 11:34 pm

Bankei wrote:Thanks for the update Chi.

How about memorising the ordination proceedure - did you need to?

bankei


Nope, just repeated some things, all in English, and replied "Yes, venerable sir" or "My preceptor is _____________, venerable sir" or "My name is ___________"

To be honest, it felt almost like a joke. Really lighthearted. It brought tremendous joy.
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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Bankei » Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:33 am

hi Chi,

wow that is very interesting. Are you saying you ordained as a Bhikkhu without chanting the Pali ceremonial chants?

This would be considered heretical by most Thai monks, where even an incorrect pronouciation of one word would be considered to invalidate the whole proceedure (according to some anyway).



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Re: Temporary Ordination at Panditarama?

Postby Chi » Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:29 pm

Bankei wrote:hi Chi,

wow that is very interesting. Are you saying you ordained as a Bhikkhu without chanting the Pali ceremonial chants?

This would be considered heretical by most Thai monks, where even an incorrect pronouciation of one word would be considered to invalidate the whole proceedure (according to some anyway).



Bankei


I ordained as a novice using Pali ceremonial chants...you know, the refuges, the precepts, and a couple of other things.

To be sure, the monks recited some things in Pali during the bhikkhu ordination.
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