I’ve recently made the decision that I want to become a Buddhist monk, I was just wondering what some peoples takes on this are. Most of my friends think they have me figured out and it’s quite annoying when it comes to the subject of me wanting to become a monk. My mom supports it but she wants me to live life before I just go of somewhere and become a monk, I recently decided that’s a good idea due to the fact that having regrets will just slow the process off enlightenment. I was originally going to head out to Tibet as soon as possible but that was a little far-fetched. I’m going to a Buddhist monastery this spring to check it out in either NC or some other place my mom said we should checkout but I’m going to try to find some other ones also. Please feel free to lend me some advice, thanks in advance!
@niglet, Well that attitude is going to get you far. Well who am i? Nobody special, however i did spend an entire at the Kopan Monastery between Nov-Dec. I got to see how monks operate on a daily basis. If you are interested in becoming a monk, you should check out their courses.
@niglet, i have some hard core advice for you thanks to personal experience with monks and monasterys. having spent 16 years in nepal and bhutan and having a son who was recognized as a Tulku. or reincarnated Lama. My son was taken from me at the age of 11 and spent until age 16 in a Buddhist Tibetan monastery in northern India. where he was raped beaten and abused mentally. this is common practice of the Tibetans and they find it normal behaviour to discipline monks. so please dont be naive in this decision. there are ways you can study the Dharma and when and if you find a sangha perhaps in your own counrtry and a teacher who inspires you and is authentic on the path, then perhaps you can take this radical decision. until then it is just plain naive to run off thinking that a monasteic life will bring you any happiness or wisdom. there is alot to be gained still in the lay life. good luck and i wish you all the best .
@niglet, What she implied is that monasteries are not always what they seem to be. If they were a fast ticket to enlightenment, which your fantasies about them imply, a lot more enlightened people would exist. However, this is not the case. Monasteries are often just like any other institution, focused on self-propagation and power practices. They are more likely to breed corruption than perfect beings.
There also seems to be a theme of aggression in your replies towards people that disagree with you. Of course I could be wrong here, but it seems you are more trying to convince yourself than really listening what others have to say. This, plus reading the false major premise on which you base your own world-view (everyone always do everything for selfish reasons) shows to me that you need to explore this idea of yours a bit deeper, especially regarding your own motivations.
@martijn, wow martijn that was well said. im not trying to convince this boy one way or the other about what he should do. just give him fair warning based on a real experience that happened to my own family. of course not all monks are abused but a fair amount of them are and this issue is a painful one that most westerners or easteners alike faill to admit or want to see. like you say they are institutions of humans and intense places of power.
there are so many opportunites for teachings outside of the extreme decision to withdraw from society. and it seems niglet has a lot to learn!!! and no doubt a lot to offer as well.
it would be a pity for him to hide behind some naive idea that only monks can get enlightened. freedom is everywhere and at all times for everyone. !
@martijn, It’s a fact that everyone is selfish due to the fact that yourself. I am agressive to answers that are not really helping or just not really important. Just because they are all subject to corruption just like everything else in the world doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to seek out one that isn’t. I have no fantasies of becoming enlightened quickly which I never once implied? I am aware that it could take my whole life to attain enlightenment, which I’m more than willing to do. I couldn’t see how anyone would ever want to live in this corrupt country ist’s just sad, but yes there is the whole other side of the globe witch I am gonnna be traveling before I become a monk, if that doesn’t change it. I let a lot of things affect my decision mbut rarely other peoples opinions, espically the ones that aere just commenting from a bias speculative point of view. This is kinda pointless tho and there is no need for futher argumentation.
@xavv racial slurs are in the mind of the beholder. ‘niglet’ is a cute word. I call my golden retriever variously ‘nugget’ and ‘niglet’. I can’t imagine that choosing a screen name with a few letters of a ‘bad phrase’ make that person automatically ‘bad’ and that we should ascribe those motivations to that person?
@niglet, i think it is a wise and just yearning at 16 to want to retire from life. i was the same way. the modern consumer society has little to offer some of us soul searchers. it is good you are looking at alternatives. it would be good if you could find a spiritual teacher now near where you live and go to high school. it is important in any case to finish school before setting out on a journey. going to nepal. and visiting for example kopan monastery for a month retreat is a good way to start. or even doing a vipassana retreat, of which there are many available in every place. these are good things to get you moving in the direction inward.
please realize that everyone on this forum is trying to help one another in what every way possible. so use the advice you need and just ignore the rest!! friendly advice from an old stone dragon.
i must say, this is an absolutely amazing post which is not only well written and succinct, but solidified many thoughts i have been having.
true enlightenment means maintaining the state in the midst of western chaos. enlightened ones shine brighter amongst the darkness.
“happiness only real when shared…” – Into The Wild
niglet, i sympathize with you greatly. but what i am starting to lean towards is that enlightenment is most profound within the most selfish, suffering, ego-dominated society (like everything else, we must learn to love challenges for they bring about the most positive change)