Friday, December 18, 2009

Bat Nha Monks and Nuns in Danger

Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh gave a wonderful talk by Video from France at the Parliament of World Religions. The situation at this temple and for the monks and nuns is critical. Dec 9th they were ordered to de-robe and stop Buddhist practice in danger of being jailed and or killed. Remember them in your prayers and chants.

Bat Nha Monks and Nuns in Danger

by Brother Phap Lai, a monastic disciple of Thich Nhat Hanh

Greetings once more from Plum Village where our 90 day Winter Retreat has just opened with strong energy and Thay in good health and giving us nourishing Dharma talks. Wonderful.

Meanwhile the situation of our brothers and sisters in Phouc Hue temple, Bao Loc city, has become super critical. Violent expulsion of the more than 400 Buddhist monks and nuns is planned and would seem imminent. We deduce this from information received that the government has been coercing hundreds of local people with the promise of money and by making threats to demonstrate their anger towards us on the day of expulsion. We do not know the exact date planned. We assume they will hire mobs to carry out the expulsion.

Below is a link to an investigative report on the situation. Please view the (26min) film "Bat Nha Report"

The text below summarizes the main points of the film:

On September 27, 2009 nearly 400 Buddhist monks and nuns were violently expelled from Bat Nha Monastery in the central highlands of Vietnam.

The Bat Nha monks and nuns, members of the Plum Village Tradition founded by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, are now entering their 8th week of uncertain refuge at Phuoc Hue temple, Bao Loc.

They remain under strict police control and surveillance. Government authorities continue their campaign of defamatory propaganda against the innocent monks and nuns through newspapers, radio and loud-speaker broadcasts.

In recent days, local authorities have stepped up their determined efforts to disband the community. They have set an end-of-November deadline for the monks and nuns to disperse, threatening violence if they fail to do so. Monastics leaving Phuoc Hue to travel to other temples have been followed, harassed and had their papers confiscated. Meanwhile, police have been taking the details of monks aged 18-25 as part of the national military draft process.

The government of Vietnam seems set on persecuting this young community 'to the end', forcing the monks and nuns to discontinue their simple path of peace, non-violence and compassionate service to their country.

The latest information we have is that the government are coercing all local people with money and threats to demonstrate on the day of expulsion and will hire mobs to carry out the expulsion.
Violent expulsion of the more than 400 Buddhist monks and nuns is planned and would seem imminent. Please stay in touch with the situation through

By shining light on the situation as it unfolds the truth will be revealed and tragedy may be averted.

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