A Buddhist temple in Thailand is left without monks gracing its premises after all of them reportedly failed drug test. The monks have since been sent to rehab, leaving the monastery without any monks, akin to a museum without any artifacts. The incident was reported from Thailand’s Bung Sam Phan district and occurred at a temple located in central Thailand.
As per district official BoonlertThintapthai, four monks and an abbot (monk chief) were tested for drug abuse, and tested positive for methamphetamine earlier on Monday. The monks and the abbot were immediately defrocked, and were sent to a rehabilitation. “The temple is now empty of monks and nearby villagers are concerned they cannot do any merit-making,” BoonlertThintapthai was quoted saying.
Boonlert added that as the temple remains without monks, more monks will be sent to the temple so that villagers are able to practice their religious activities and merit-making. For the unversed, merit-making includes giving food and alms to the praying monks. The whole idea behind merit-making is to do good deeds for one’s betterment.
As per UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime, Thailand is a major transit country producing methamphetamine with seizures of the abovementioned drug reaching a never-before high in 2021.
The Facts of the Matter
In traditional Hinduism, ‘Kalyug’ or ‘Kali Yuga’, is the fourth and worst yugas (ages) filled with conflicts, sinners, and misery. It is also called the “age of darkness” due to its characteristics. In one incident which would prove ‘Kalyug’ to be the ultimate truth, monks at a Buddhist temple in Thailand were left without any monks after all of them failed drug test.
Buddhist Monks Expectations VS Reality
Buddhist monks, who bear the burden of carrying forward the rich legacy of Buddhism, are supposed to live a simple life, and meditate to attain nirvana. Seems like monks of a monastery in Bung Sam Phan district found a different way to attain the nirvana.
According to AFP, four monks, and an abbot (chief of monks), were tested for drugs earlier this week. Their reports shockingly showed them being positive for methamphetamine abuse. The monks and the abbot were immediately defrocked, and were sent to rehabilitation centre to mend their ways.
“Temple empty”: Thai District Official
District official BoonlertThintapthai was quoted by AFP saying that the “temple is now empty of monks and nearby villagers are concerned they cannot do any merit-making”.
New Monks to Be Assigned
For the unversed merit-making is one of the religious practices observed by locals which involves giving food, water, and other essentials to monk for “good Karma”.
As per official BoonlertThintapthai local monastic chief was consulted by officials and he promised to assign new monks to the temple for the worshippers to continue on their daily religious activities.
Thailand On Brink of Meth Crisis
It should be noted that Thailand is on the brink of a major methamphetamine crisis, with price of the local methamphetamine pills called Yaba being as low as 10-20 baht (Rs 23-46). Earlier in July, the Thai police in a major crackdown against methamphetamine conducted raises where millions of pills were seized. In one raid, the police seized 4.7 million pills whereas in a separate raid another 1 million pills were seized. In another raid, the cops seized 631 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine.