Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

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

WorldTraveller
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Re: Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

Post by WorldTraveller » Fri May 04, 2018 6:24 am

gavesako wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:20 pm
Actually Ven. K. Gnanananda, the head of the Mahamevnawa group, once handed us a copy of his book in English and -- a little embarrassed -- he crossed out the word "Thero" behind his name. The reason is that he is a Pali scholar and his aim is to return to the original Buddha's teachings as preserved in the Suttas and Vinaya, so he knew that this usage was technically incorrect, although it has become the norm in Sri Lanka today.
Bhante, :anjali:

That's an interesting bit of info and do you remember when this incident happened? Did he himself gave the reason that you mentioned? Because according to the Sri Lankan custom a bhikkhu can use the title "thero" only after the fulfilment of 10th rain (vassa). For Ven. K. Gnanananda, that was 2015.

I'm curious about the reason behind Ven. K. Gnanananda's action because from what I heard from the locals, he created much issues and also received much criticism for taking Upasampada together with his students in 2004, training them as the teacher, and starting branches all over the place, especially very closer to existing places, appointing those newly Upasampada as abbots (sometimes samanera's also).Later I was told the government placed new rules prohibiting establishment of new Asapaus (that's what Mahamewnawa branches called) with a certain distance from already existing places.

Below is a quote from Ven. Nyanatusita's monastery list 2005 edition:
The head monastery of the movement around the very popular teacher Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda, an English speaking, meditative and, most of all, missionary monk who is quite knowledgeable about the suttas. There are about 60 monks in this training centre and it is crowded.

In June 2004 Ven. Gnanananda together with 45 other novice disciples received the Upasampadá and in 2005 another 40 became bhikkhus. Strict practice ofthe Dhamma and Vinaya, there is some meditation, but the main emphasis of Gnanananda is to spread the Dhamma,which has already led to quite a few problems in his communities. There are about 20 branch monasteries connected to this monastery and more are being set up all
the time. Two new ones are near Kandy. One in Kundasála and the other right below Dhammakúta at Hindagala.
“Kālāmas, do not go by oral tradition, by lineage of teaching, by hearsay, by a canonical tradition, by logical reasoning, by inferential reasoning, by reasoned cogitation, by the acceptance of a view after pondering it, by the seeming competence of a speaker, or because you think: ‘The ascetic is our guru.’”
- Buddha

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pilgrim
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Re: Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

Post by pilgrim » Fri May 04, 2018 9:12 am

BKh wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2017 1:59 am

In Sri Lanka it is an honorific for all monks. In fact, it is legally a part of all monks names on their passports.
WorldTraveller wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 6:24 am
Because according to the Sri Lankan custom a bhikkhu can use the title "thero" only after the fulfilment of 10th rain (vassa). For Ven. K. Gnanananda, that was 2015.
:shrug: :shrug: Which is it?

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Re: Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

Post by WorldTraveller » Fri May 04, 2018 10:13 am

pilgrim wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 9:12 am
:shrug: :shrug: Which is it?
"In Sri Lanka it is an honorific for all monks" is incorrect. Yes, it's the way used in passports. And, this caused issues for some monks who are not 10 vassa yet when they visited Nanachat! :D

But, if you look at their government issued National ID, the term used for monks is "himi" regardless a samanera or a bhikkhu which means "monk". Also, I have seen some government institutions use "reverend". In the end it's just the policy of that particular institution.

But among Sri Lankan monks, if a novice or a less than 10 vassa monk uses thero, it will be criticised.
“Kālāmas, do not go by oral tradition, by lineage of teaching, by hearsay, by a canonical tradition, by logical reasoning, by inferential reasoning, by reasoned cogitation, by the acceptance of a view after pondering it, by the seeming competence of a speaker, or because you think: ‘The ascetic is our guru.’”
- Buddha

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gavesako
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Re: Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

Post by gavesako » Fri May 04, 2018 3:18 pm

WorldTraveller wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 6:24 am
gavesako wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:20 pm
Actually Ven. K. Gnanananda, the head of the Mahamevnawa group, once handed us a copy of his book in English and -- a little embarrassed -- he crossed out the word "Thero" behind his name. The reason is that he is a Pali scholar and his aim is to return to the original Buddha's teachings as preserved in the Suttas and Vinaya, so he knew that this usage was technically incorrect, although it has become the norm in Sri Lanka today.
Bhante, :anjali:

That's an interesting bit of info and do you remember when this incident happened? Did he himself gave the reason that you mentioned? Because according to the Sri Lankan custom a bhikkhu can use the title "thero" only after the fulfilment of 10th rain (vassa). For Ven. K. Gnanananda, that was 2015.

I'm curious about the reason behind Ven. K. Gnanananda's action because from what I heard from the locals, he created much issues and also received much criticism for taking Upasampada together with his students in 2004, training them as the teacher, and starting branches all over the place, especially very closer to existing places, appointing those newly Upasampada as abbots (sometimes samanera's also).Later I was told the government placed new rules prohibiting establishment of new Asapaus (that's what Mahamewnawa branches called) with a certain distance from already existing places.

Below is a quote from Ven. Nyanatusita's monastery list 2005 edition:
The head monastery of the movement around the very popular teacher Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda, an English speaking, meditative and, most of all, missionary monk who is quite knowledgeable about the suttas. There are about 60 monks in this training centre and it is crowded.

In June 2004 Ven. Gnanananda together with 45 other novice disciples received the Upasampadá and in 2005 another 40 became bhikkhus. Strict practice ofthe Dhamma and Vinaya, there is some meditation, but the main emphasis of Gnanananda is to spread the Dhamma,which has already led to quite a few problems in his communities. There are about 20 branch monasteries connected to this monastery and more are being set up all
the time. Two new ones are near Kandy. One in Kundasála and the other right below Dhammakúta at Hindagala.
This was when we attended his ordination ceremony in 2004. It was a bit unusual, because he had been a samanera for about 20 years by that time and developed a large following of students who were also samaneras. So he found one bhikkhu who was close to him and respected him, who would then become the acariya giving formal dependence (nissaya), if I remember correctly.
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

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WorldTraveller
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Re: Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

Post by WorldTraveller » Sun May 06, 2018 2:49 am

gavesako wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 3:18 pm
This was when we attended his ordination ceremony in 2004. It was a bit unusual, because he had been a samanera for about 20 years by that time and developed a large following of students who were also samaneras. So he found one bhikkhu who was close to him and respected him, who would then become the acariya giving formal dependence (nissaya), if I remember correctly.
Thank you bhante.

It is indeed a weird tendency in Sri Lanka and somewhat in Myanmar where more monks prefer to stay as samaneras for very long periods or even for life. Some say they fear living as a bhikkhu with so many rules and not yet ready for the big task, but the popular answer is it's easy to live as a samanera since no need to worry about rules (can break and take back the samanera oath endlessly).

But I think in the view of Dhamma-Vinaya not becoming a bhikkhu is more similar to willingly staying as a probationer in a job.
“Kālāmas, do not go by oral tradition, by lineage of teaching, by hearsay, by a canonical tradition, by logical reasoning, by inferential reasoning, by reasoned cogitation, by the acceptance of a view after pondering it, by the seeming competence of a speaker, or because you think: ‘The ascetic is our guru.’”
- Buddha

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Re: Ordination in the Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka

Post by retrofuturist » Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:15 am

Greetings,
Knut wrote:
Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:11 am
Happy to tell that my ordination as a Buddhist monk took place April 8 at the Mahamevnawa Buddhist Monastery in Polgahawela in Sri Lanka. My new name is now Bhante Sudewa Thero.

For more information on Mahamevnawa in Sri Lanka and other places in the world, please visit http://mahamevnawa.lk/. It is a great place for ordination if you are considering such a thing.

Namo Buddhaya.
Congratulations bhante.

If you would like to update your username to reflect this news, please let me know.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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