It had been a plan to visit my sponsored Tibetan monk at Sera Monestry in India. Liling, a Taiwanese cum Australian long-term friend whom one day (two years ago) stayed at my house on her transit from Taiwan to Australia, brought a few passport photos of young Tibetan monks. I choosed one of them (Tashi Phuntsok) as my birthday wish to do good deed and on my birthday I posted some money to him. Since then, I made sure my support to him is consistant. Knowing Tibetan monestic tradition is less strick than other Buddhist monestic such as Theravada tradition, as well as encountering Tibetan monks possess sun glasses, more than one handphones, expansive watch and mp3 player, I have been wondering how Tashi uses the money. My curiousity builds up day by day…

My first visit to Sera Monestry was out of a blue. Together with Alex, Shirley and Suzie, we made necessary connections at Sera Monestry, forced poor Tashi out of his bed with pain and fever to meet me. Well, first impression wasn’t that impressive, mainly due the the language barrier and unfamiliar with the Tibetan monestic culture.

My second visit was with Alex and Liling. This time, it was well arranged. Liling’s sponsored monk fetched us in Mysore andescorted us to Kushalnagar (Approx. 2 hours ride from Mysore), the nearest town of Sera. We stayed there for 2 nights. Both our sponsored monks helped us made our beds. The next morning, they brought us to the Golden temple and toured around Sera monestries… we were delighted for a fair bit of cultural exchange.

Tashi appears to me as a sincere and diligent young man with an ambition of climbing the educational ladder and hope one day he will return to China to nurture the future generation. In Tashi’s living quarter, he sincerely showed me his studies and gave me a diary which he had kept for a while.

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I feel a great relieve after meeting Tashi as I know my little donation will help him materialises his vision. At the same time, the money goes nearly direct to him, with no middle person charges.

Jing

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