Meditating Monk

Julie Marks

Los Angeles, United States

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Artist's Description

Most people think of monks as males and nuns as females. However, there is an exception In Mahayana Buddhism, the term ‘Sangha’ is in principle restricted to those who have achieved certain levels of understanding. They are therefore called ‘community of the excellent ones’ (Tibetan: mchog kyi tshogs); however, these in turn need not be monks (i.e., hold such vows). Several Mahayana orders accept female practitioners as monks, instead of using the normal title of “nun”, and they are considered equal to male ascetics in all respects. This is a photograph of a monastery where a female monk is meditating in seclusion after taking her vows to develop her own personal ethical discipline. In Buddism, monkhood is a part of the system of vows of individual liberation. This monk has entered the monastic way of life which includes wearing robes. After that, one can become a “novice” that is the final step to becoming a fully ordained monk. I free associated to this image when I observed a female monk with long robes on the right of the photograph. I also see a young man next to her softly stumming a guitar. My bark images offer the viewer any association or perception of images that he or she sees. Feel free to share your projections of this multi-layered piece.

Artwork Comments

  • aspectsoftmk
  • Jamie Winter-Schira
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