Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony

Collection with 21 media items created by vincenzo floramo

15 Mar 2013 02:00

The photojournalist follows two boys through their Theravada Initiation ceremony. Ta Pwe in the Karen terms refers to the celebration marking the samara ordination of boy under the age of 20.

It is deemed the most important duty that parents owe to their son by letting him go forth and embrace the legacy of the Buddha. He becomes immersed on Buddhist teachings for minimally a short while, perhaps longer, if not for the rest of his life. On the mark of this ceremony, at least forty children on the full moon of March got their hair shaved at Mae La refugee camp, Mae Sot, Thailand.

The holy celebration took place at Thirisanda monastery on the top hill of Camp Zone C. The Mae La camp accommodates 45,000 mainly ethnic Karen people and is the largest of nine camps along Thailand’s border with Burma. Despite the fact that the Karen National Union and the Myanmar government signed a ceasefire in 2011, the process towards democratic reform and reconciliation is in its early days.The majority of Mae La's refugees feel it is not time to return yet.

Saw Win Gy and The Win, respectively ten and twelve years old,are two Karen boys we followed during the ceremony.

Karen Buddhist The... Thailand Burma Southeast Asia Asia Buddhism Mae La Refug... Mae Sot Refugee

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 1
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
15 Mar 2013

Ta Pwe is the Karen terms for the initiation ceremony in the Buddhist Theravada tradition, which refers to the celebration marking the samara ordination of boys under age of 20. /the two friends have a rest in a friend's home, as the visit around the camp is taking its toll.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 2
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
15 Mar 2013

Ta Pwe is the Karen terms for the initiation ceremony in the Buddhist Theravada tradition, which refers to the celebration marking the samara ordination of boys under age of 20.

On the mark of this ceremony, every year on the full moon of March, children's heads are shaved at Mae La refugee camp, Mae Sot, Thailand.

Saw Win Gy and The The Win on the first day of Ta pew initiation ceremony wake up early in the morning to get carefully made up by their mothers.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 4
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
31 Dec 2012

Saw Win Gy and The Win get dressed by their mother. Gold and jewelry is used to remind of the rich past of Prince Siddharta .

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 5
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
14 Mar 2013

A musician plays traditional drums, bamboo sticks and some keyboards. They perform walking in a parade just behind the two children who will be initiated.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 6
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
15 Mar 2013

At Mae La refugee camp, during Ta Pwe celebrations, children are carried on their parents shoulders through the streets.In this photo, Saw Win Gy is on his uncle's shoulders.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 8
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

The two friends invite a guest to the shaving initiation.The guest accepts by wetting his face.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremony 9
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
15 Mar 2013

The Win performing the guest invitation ceremony on a small Buddha Shrine.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
15 Mar 2013

At Mae La refugee camp, during Ta Pwe celebration, children are carried on their parents shoulders around the streets.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
14 Mar 2013

The Win waits his turn for an outdoor shower after a long touring day around the camp.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

On the big day's morning of the shaving ceremony, Ta pew gets carefully made up by his mother.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
15 Mar 2013

The Win gets ready to start the walking parade to the Monastery on Shaving Ceremony Day.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

Saw Win Gy and The Win take the chance to relax and share an intimate moment in the early morning of the shaving day.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

Saw Win Gy at the monastery campground where all the children wait their turn to be shaved.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

Saw Win Gy is having his head shaved by a monk at the Thirisanda Buddhist Monastery at Mae La refugee camp.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

Saw Win Gy and The Win having exchanged their princely garb with white robes, recites the Ten Precepts.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

Saw Win Gy receives the saffron robe and is helped by a monk to wear it properly.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

When the ceremony is finished and the children become monks, parents throw in the air a mixture of popcorn, candy and coins.

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Buddhist Theravada Initiation Ceremon...
Mae La refugee camp,Mae Sot, Thailand
By vincenzo floramo
16 Mar 2013

The Win at the end of the ceremony. His family will leave him in the monastery where he will be "alone" for the first time.