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bogus monk

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  • chew huat soon
    Dear venerable monks, I used to donate food such as milk,oats and bread to a monk on the street.Many people kneel down and bow to him,paying respect to him as
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 11, 2004
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      Dear venerable monks,

      I used to donate food such as milk,oats and bread to a monk
      on the street.Many people kneel down and bow to him,paying respect to him as
      GOD.Yesterday,I saw this particular monk smoking in the coffeeshop.I was so
      shocked as he did not keep the simple 5th precept as a holy and well
      respected monk.I felt cheated.My question is should I or other people
      continue to offer food to him who is not virtuous and noble as many people
      think?Please advise me.

      H.S. Chew.

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    • Bhikkhu Pesala
      First of all, smoking cigarettes is not in contravention of the fifth precept because it is not an intoxicant. If he was smoking marijuana, one might
      Message 2 of 2 , Jan 12, 2004
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        First of all, smoking cigarettes is not in contravention of the fifth
        precept because it is not an intoxicant. If he was smoking marijuana,
        one might justifiably accuse him of breaking the precept.

        Smoking is some kind of sensual indulgence that is unsuitable for a
        monk. One could perhaps argue that smoking was contravening the third
        precept, which according to some interpretations includes all kinds of
        excessive sensual indulgence like gambling, and not just adultery.

        As far as I know, there is no Vinaya rule that forbids smoking, though
        I wouldn't defend it. In any sensible person's view it is unsuitable
        for a monk to smoke, though it is hardly a serious misconduct like
        drinking alcohol. It is not any worse than watching sport on TV.

        Certainly, it does not deserve the accusation of "bogus monk." Bogus
        means that he is not a monk at all, one guilty of defeat, or one who
        has never been ordained as a monk. I suggest that you ask forgiveness
        of that monk. He may or may not be a good monk, but seeing him smoking
        cigarettes does not mean that he deserves to be called "bogus."

        Please see Venerable Ledi Sayadaw's explanation of the right attitude
        that lay persons should take towards a monk who they know for sure to
        be immoral, i.e. guilty of a serious offence of defeat. Truly a bogus
        monk:

        http://www.aimwell.org/Books/Library/Ledi/Dhamma/Immoral/immoral.html

        http://www.aimwell.org/Books/Library/Ledi/Dhamma/Honour/honour.html

        http://www.aimwell.org/Books/Library/Ledi/Dhamma/Worship/worship.html
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