Japanese monks promote Buddhism in a liquor bar!

December 26th, 2007 - 3:08 pm ICT by admin  

Tokyo, Dec.26 (ANI): 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. (ANI)

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