"" Writer's Wanderings: Thailand's Monk Bowls

Monday, September 24, 2018

Thailand's Monk Bowls

Usually there is not much on television on Saturday mornings other than cartoons but even those run out quickly and then begin the info-mercials. I hate those! In surfing one Saturday for something to watch while I did my therapy exercises for my knee, I happened onto a program that is very interesting. It's called The Voyager and the young man who is the traveler/journaler, Josh Garcia, has a nice easy going personality that suits my travel tastes.

Although he's young, he's not into reporting on extreme travel and exotic places that are unreachable for many of us. In fact, he travels by cruise ship and then visits some unique places in port. Just last Saturday he visited Bangkok, Thailand. I was fascinated by the things he found there. It was a lot nicer than the Bangkok we saw but then we were there only a few hours in the evening to explore and spend the night before flying home at the end of a cruise.

One of the more fascinating things for me was his visit to where monk bowls were made--the real monk bowls. I had never heard of them before. They are bowls that are made for the Buddhist monks to use to ask for alms and food from those they meet on the street. It is the only way they survive since there is no funding through their temples that provides for them.

There was a time when all the bowls were made by hand but now the majority of them are manufactured in factories in other parts of Asia. One community though still makes them as before. The community is called Ban Baat and is in Bangkok. This is where Garcia went.

The video showed the process which is labor intensive and if you go to The Voyager website you can view it. Or if you'd like to read about it this site has pictures and a little history.

Garcia has piqued my curiosity. Maybe we need to explore Thailand a bit more.

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