Western Monk moving to Canada

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Florian Weps, modified 8 Years ago.

Western Monk moving to Canada

Posts: 1028 Join Date: 4/28/09 Recent Posts
Ven. Yuttadhammo, a western monk who's probably best known as the creator of the Digital Pali Reader software (a Firefox plugin - you can browse the Pali text of the canon, click on any word, and retrieve dictionary entries and conjucation/declension info) is moving from South East Asia to Canada.

Here's his latest blog post, Trippin.

Yuttadhammo:
Off to the city, then another city, then another country. Eighteen days left to change plans.

Feeling more confident about the move to Canada, but the idea of disappearing into the forest still rears its head every so often. Or at least staying in Asia. Life is always so uncertain…

I think the real uncertainty stems from the fact that there is no real support in Canada as far as an experienced Buddhist meditation community. Being picked up at the airport by people I’ve never met to depend on their support for keeping me off the streets of Toronto… and we already know how alms in Toronto goes from last year (it doesn’t). I shy away from explaining the details of my planned residence to people here after getting some fairly concerned expressions from those I have. Even if we do acquire a house (and that’s still a big if), then what? Life in a house, I suppose. Not so bad, but still nothing like the forest.

The benefits are reassuring, though, so let’s go through them again… freedom from pesky things like visas and government regulated monasticism, a culture and society that makes sense and sees me as a member – albeit a strange one, and infrastructure that allows international organization and activity. And it doesn’t hurt to remind oneself of things like the absence of oppressive heat (got some wool cloth to make a nice sangati for the cold) and generally healthy food (assuming people want me alive enough to feed me).

I guess the best I can say is it will be interesting. If I don’t disappear in the next eighteen days, that is…


So, for all Traditionalists out there - here's a real monk to feed and shelter. If the existence of the ordained Sangha is an inspiration to you, here's an opportunity to provide for them. Of course, there are many other nuns and monks living in Western countries. They all face similar issues: either go live in an Asian cultural center supported by Asian ex-pats, or struggle to get support from Westerners who are not culturally steeped in the idea of providing for holy drop-outs. And then there are the secular Western teachers trying to live off donations.

And if you're not that excited about Western monks, but still find the Digital Pali Reader useful - well, it's free (as in beer), but its creator still has to keep warm and wants to eat.


Cheers,
Florian
Jigme Sengye, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Western Monk moving to Canada

Posts: 189 Join Date: 8/22/09 Recent Posts
I'm in Montreal, rather than Toronto, but I'll fill out the contact form on the site to see if there's something I can do to help out a little. Thanks for posting about this.
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katy steger, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Western Monk moving to Canada

Posts: 1745 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
I've really enjoyed his talks this past year and benefited from his openness, his sharing about his life and his willingness to take on lots of touchy subjects. He's Canadian by birth and hopefully he will be able to pioneer a way for his practice there. Thanks for the update, Florian. I haven't checked his site in a while.
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Daniel Gravel, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Western Monk moving to Canada

Posts: 71 Join Date: 12/28/12 Recent Posts
Montrealer here.

Seems like a better idea to trust that the universe will provide. The street kids seem to be able to do it. He will just have to adapt a little, instead of alms then soup kitchens (or welfare :-D).

Oh and Canadians would love some oppressive heat... the cold in this country (maybe not in Toronto) will make you literally chop off your own toes. I have plenty of friends who are living in the forests of Canada...through the winters (living in wigwams, no electricity and only a well with a hand pump for water).

Plenty of empathy here but very little sympathy... its small peas.

I can understand that he fears for his practice but if this move is coming to him it must become a part of his practice.
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Daniel Gravel, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: Western Monk moving to Canada

Posts: 71 Join Date: 12/28/12 Recent Posts
I have heard it said that there was a correlation between enlightenment and ones land of birth. I wonder if thats whats pushing him to come here.