Thread: Zen Buddhist Robes

  1. #1

    Zen Buddhist Robes

    Soto Zen teacher Brad Warner gives a short talk: "The Merit of Buddhist Robes". (approx. 11 minutes)

    Any thoughts in connection with the video?

  2. #2
    Forums Member justusryans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Buckingham, Virginia
    After watching Brad Warner talk about Buddhist robes and particularly Zen Buddhist robes, I get what he talks about as far as feeling a little out of place in his robes in the Western countries. As he said unless you are at a retreat, robes aren’t necessary. They aren’t going to help you achieve enlightenment.

    That being said, using your Buddhist name, unless you are a monk or nun, feels to me like someone trying a little to hard to draw attention to themselves. So in conclusion, I would like to say, leave the robes and the Buddhist names to those who earned them. Just my opinion...

  3. #3
    Technical Administrator woodscooter's Avatar
    London UK
    I agree with you, justusryans. In the Western world, the monk's robe seems rather out-of-place. It's also fairly impractical clothing for everyday wear.

    I've sometimes passed by white-skinned western people dressed in monk's robes, while travelling on the London Underground, or at airports. I accept they are dressed that way because of a life choice they have made. In London you can wear whatever you want, no-one seems to mind. The only ones who stare are small children.

    However, I've probably also passed by white-skinned western people who are ordained Buddhists wearing western clothing, and never noticed them. Somehow, to me, that seems more in keeping with the Buddhist way of doing things, quietly getting on with walking the path.

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