It’s a common sentiment that in Buddhist circles, the most auspicious day is the day when we commit to practicing sincerely. Nevertheless, there are a few days in the calendar that are a bit more auspicious than others. The lunar days every fortnight are an example, where we get together to retake our precepts, meditate, and contemplate dhamma together. One such lunar day marks the beginning of what the monks call ‘robe season’. This is the fourth month of the rainy season, when monks traditionally prepared their robes before going back out to wandering.
This robe season found Tahn Pamutto in NYC again, staying with the Indonesian Buddhist Family. The robe season is the time for the kathina festival, a special alms-giving ceremony where the community shows its gratitude for resident monks by offering the requisites they will need for the coming year. Each monastery tends to have a kathina, and this allows for a great number of festive gatherings and meetings between different communities. Yesterday was the kathina for the Indonesian vihara, and despite the chill on the air it was a heartwarming day with a good turnout! The group was able to show their gratitude for having Tahn Santi staying and teaching through the last year and the rainy season.
The day before, Tahn Pamutto was attending the teaching given by Ven. Burin at the Buddhist Friends group. To both of their surprise, Ven. Burin led the first meditation retreat Tahn Pamutto ever attended in Thailand, in 2008. Small world! The Buddhist Friends group continues to offer a program every month. If you’re in the big city, Tahn Pamutto will be helping lead the next session on Dec 3.