After a brief burst of travel, the Upavana monastics have arrived in New York City, and are staying with the Indonesian Buddhist Family in Queens. They have made the journey to seek full ordination for Bhante Sumano and Anagarika Drew. It will happen on Tuesday, Oct 5 in the early afternoon, at Wat Thai Thavorn, Elmhurst.
There is no self-ordination in Buddhism. You can’t just put on robes and call yourself a monk, even if you have faith and wisdom and practice diligently. Ordination has to be given by a community of at least 5 monks. The lineage of Buddhist monastics is passed from one to the next and is unbroken all the way back to the Buddha.
One of the challenges in America is that even with the allowance to ordain with just 5 monks in foreign lands (it takes 20 in India!), it is still hard to pull together the resources to give full ordination.
We are very fortunate to have so many friends in the city! Once ordained, Bhante Sumano and Drew can return to Massachusetts and continue practicing until the Vassa season ends on October 21.