I  will let the pictures do most of the talking in this post.

Buddhist nuns in Myanmar always dress in a fetching pink colour. A nun’s life is tough but they seem cheerful enough, collecting alms in the market, studying Pali sutras or sorting out clothes at the nunnery. The commitment is actually finite, as most Burmese girls only join the nunnery for a period of a few weeks at a time.

As with Burmese boys, time spent in monasteries is viewed as a right of passage and it is considered an honour for the family to have their child wear robes for even a short period. Naturally, it brings good karma too.

Young nuns at Mingun nunnery and at Amarapura market, Myanmar

The character below is actually a boy, despite the makeup and pink get-up. He is on his way to a monastery to become a monk for a few weeks. The boy is accompanied by villagers who sing stirring valedictory songs to him as he rides along on his pony. Most of the village seems to go along for the ride – it is a party atmosphere and drink (palm toddy perhaps) has certainly been taken by some of the happy entourage. Remarkable as it may seem, this is the sort of chance event that you stumble upon every day of the week in Myanmar.

Young novice processing to Buddhist monastery near Hpa-an, Myanmar

About East of Elveden

Hidden places, secret histories and unsung geography from the east of England and beyond
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