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Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:16 pm
by thang
Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?
Should a monk stand up when the judge enters in to the court?

What is the existing law of those countries regarding this matter?
And what is the correct way according to Dhamma?

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 9:14 pm
by pitakele
thang wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:16 pm
And what is the correct way according to Dhamma?
If a monk is practising the path correctly, not involved in worldliness, why would he be anywhere near a court?

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 9:37 pm
by Sam Vara
pitakele wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 9:14 pm
thang wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:16 pm
And what is the correct way according to Dhamma?
If a monk is practising the path correctly, not involved in worldliness, why would he be anywhere near a court?
Could he be there without an accusation being made against him personally?
when summoned to a court or to a meeting, or to his relatives' presence, or to his guild, or to the royal family's presence, and questioned as a witness thus,...

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 10:11 pm
by JamesTheGiant
pitakele wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 9:14 pm
If a monk is practising the path correctly, not involved in worldliness, why would he be anywhere near a court?
Witness to a crime? Testimony in a civil accusation against another bhikkhu or financial irregularities in a monastery? There to offer advice to government officials?
There are lots of potential reasons a good and blameless bhikkhu could be in a courtroom.

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:08 pm
by pitakele
JamesTheGiant wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 10:11 pm

Witness to a crime? Testimony in a civil accusation against another bhikkhu or financial irregularities in a monastery? There to offer advice to government officials?
Except for 'witness to a crime', I would say these other reasons probably involve some degree of worldliness. Formerly, I was a forest monk for 17 years (mainly in Sri Lanka) and can't imagine the dedicated practitioners I know being involved in such situations.

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:14 pm
by JamesTheGiant
pitakele wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:08 pm


Except for 'witness to a crime', I would say these other reasons probably involve some degree of worldliness. Formerly, I was a forest monk for 17 years (mainly in Sri Lanka) and can't imagine the dedicated practitioners I know being involved in such situations.
I can't really argue with 17 years of experience. :D
But we must remember that there are a lot a Lot of city monks, or town-monks who are quite involved with their lay community.
The percentage of actual recluses dedicated to solitude and avoiding worldly involvement, is unfortunately quite small I'd say.

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 2:26 am
by Dhammanando
thang wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:16 pm
Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?
Should a monk stand up when the judge enters in to the court?
He should do what the court requires. Not to do so would be contempt of court, which, depending on the country, would be either a civil or criminal offence. A monk committing such an offence would also be committing the Vinaya offence of non-conformity to the wishes of rulers.

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 4:42 am
by thang
Dhammanando wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 2:26 am
A monk committing such an offence would also be committing the Vinaya offence of non-conformity to the wishes of rulers.
Okasa Bhante, Thank you for replying.

Is the mentioned Vinaya offence, relevant for all wishes/laws of rulers or only for wishes about 'Defining Pavarana day' ?
If it is for all laws then how about very unfair laws? How to define the conforming limit?

Vandami.

Re: Should a monk stay standing when questioning, in the courts in Burma, Thailand, Sri Lanka ?

Posted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 9:45 am
by Dhammanando
thang wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 4:42 am
Is the mentioned Vinaya offence, relevant for all wishes/laws of rulers or only for wishes about 'Defining Pavarana day' ?
If it is for all laws then how about very unfair laws? How to define the conforming limit?
The Vinaya Piṭaka doesn't set any limitations on the rule's scope.

Buddhaghosa's commentary (Vin-a. v. 1068) takes it as applicable to any just law (dhammika kamma) established by the king, but not to unjust (adhammika) laws.