Choi is an asshole.
That is a known fact.
Hey Choi, why are you such an asshole to begin with?
Easy answer to that question.
I have a lot of asshole friends.
With a worried state of mind, I went to the internet and googled “how to not be an asshole at the Alms giving ceremony.”
What came out overwhelmed me. Google has so many damn rules! Choi ain’t going to remember it all so he will just list the 4 most important tips here. You don’t have to follow them but you will be an asshole at the ceremony, take Choi‘s word for it.
Hold the fuck on Choi, what is the Alms Giving Ceremony.
Okay young one, let me teach you something first.
The alms giving ceremony….
Is an old tradition performed between the monks and the local people. Every sunrise the monks walk through the town, receiving food or “alms” from the local people.
The locals will kneel and offer gifts such as rice, fresh fruit and other local snacks. Tourists can now also join in this ritual, but in my personal opinion please participate only if you believe in Buddhism.
If you just want to have fun then go kneel at home and give food to your parents, wife, children etc. Okay? Don’t be an asshole.
If you do decide to participate or will be watching the ceremony then the 4 rules will be applicable to you. If you don’t follow it then I am going to call you out and label you as an asshole.
# 1 – You should be kneeling
That’s right tourists. If you want to participate, then you better kneel. Don’t fucking sit on a chair and act like you are the boss or something.
The monks are held in high regard in Laos, so please be respectful and not treat them like beggars. You should be handing out the gifts like this:
And not like THIS:
# 2 – Don’t talk to them
Some monks have swore a life of silence. So they don’t talk. So stop trying to talk to them. Stop trying to provoke them.
They are not your damn toys or pets to be played around with. They are human beings too. So stop being a damn tourist.
Note – I didn’t see this happen but per the internet this happens a lot. SO DON’T DO IT!
# 3 – Keep a distance if you are taking a picture
If you want to take a picture do it from a distant. Don’t be pushing your damn camera in front of the monks face.
How would you like it if a random stranger stuck a camera to your face huh!?
You wouldn’t like it too!
Choi has a confession to make. When he took pictures of the monks he wasn’t too far back either. I didn’t stick my camera in their faces, but I should have been like life boss and stayed a bit more back.
I am guilty of this crime, and will label myself as an asshole.
# 4 – Buy from morning market not street vendors
There were a lot of street vendors trying to sell me sticky rice to gift to the monks. I didn’t buy it as I wasn’t going to participate in the ceremony.
Some bloggers mentioned as these vendors wants to make a profit, they don’t use the best ingredients available. This led to some monks being sick from the food. So please don’t buy from them.
Buy from the local market please (it’s not even expensive to begin with).
So there you have it.
Choi‘s 4 golden rules on how not to be an asshole at the Alms giving ceremony. Be respectful of the ceremony, and enjoy this very old tradition in Laos.
Written from Koh Samui, Deep Sea Resort on May 21, 2018