Buddhist Monks Find Liquor Bar a Safe Bet to Spread Religion

by Medindia Content Team on  December 26, 2007 at 5:20 PM Lifestyle News
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Buddhist Monks Find Liquor Bar a Safe Bet to Spread Religion
A group of Buddhist monks in Japan have reportedly secured a regular spot at a jazz bar to rekindle interest in the religion.

According to a BBC report, the Chippie Sound Music Bar is tiny and full of cigarette smoke.

This is not normally where you would expect to find a trio of monks. But Hogen Natori and his two friends believe this is as good a place as any to spread the word about Buddhism.

Natori and his fellow Buddhists start of their chanting sessions by ringing a small bell, and when the crowd falls silent, haunting melodies fill the space.

It is Shomyo chanting, a style of Buddhist chant found only in Japan.

Their first session on the stage lasted about 20 minutes, and was followed by a drink and a chat about Buddhism.

"Many Japanese don't want to come to temple. They think Buddhism is very difficult, and deep and serious, but Buddhism is much more than that - exciting, funny even. I want to spread this kind of teaching," Natori is quoted, as saying.

He feels people are more receptive in a bar, when they are drinking and with friends, and believes he is getting a warm response.

The monks say that their decision to perform in bars like this has upset some Buddhists, but this has not unfazed them.

Source: ANI
JDP/M

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