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Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads? - Dhamma Wheel

Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.
adamposey
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Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby adamposey » Mon Oct 12, 2009 3:54 am

I'm legitimately curious about this. It seems like something that is done more traditionally, but buddhism doesn't (in my reading) have any tradition that exists for tradition's sake. So I am very curious about why this is done. Anyone?

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appicchato
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Re: Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby appicchato » Mon Oct 12, 2009 8:21 am

The night (or shortly thereafter) the Buddha (to be) left his palace to lead the homeless life he cut his hair off...why?...good question...I believe (but am not certain) this is where the practice originated...

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David N. Snyder
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Re: Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Oct 12, 2009 2:38 pm

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adamposey
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Re: Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby adamposey » Mon Oct 12, 2009 5:20 pm

Is it common for lay followers to follow this practice?

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Jechbi
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Re: Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby Jechbi » Mon Oct 12, 2009 5:37 pm

Not unless they want to be bald.

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David N. Snyder
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Re: Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:58 pm

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adosa
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Re: Is there a particular reason monks shave their heads?

Postby adosa » Mon Oct 12, 2009 9:45 pm

In my readings I've come across the shaving of the head is more of a symbol of renunciation than anything else. As was noted it was common prior to the Buddha going forth. In fact one of the four signs that spurred the Buddha on to the homeless life, was an ascetic dressed in an ochre robe with a shaven head.


adosa
"To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas" - Dhammapada 183


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