Photographer's Note

I took this picture when I went to a Buddhist temple just right across my place. It was early morning, and apparently, there was a cremation that was to happen and the family was busy making preparations for the service. I saw this young 4-5 year-old boy in a Buddhist monk attire, running around. I smiled at him and asked his parents to photograph him. I did take quite a lot of pictures of him but since the place was swarmed by the mourners, I had no more time to compose, consider the lighting, etc. Anyway, I am sharing this picture to you with a bit of cultural note too. Why was he dressed up like that?

Becoming a NOVICE monk is a sacrifice that any family member can do to help the soul of a dead relative. This boy was apparently the “sacrifice”. It also is a good deed for him as he has to live the ascetic life of a monk for days. His eyebrows and hair were shaved, to start with. But a young boy at that age probably did not understand the implications of his actions. As you can see, he strutted in front of me and flash that “look-at-this-pretty-boy-face” act when I took this picture. (Well, I am also to be blamed for asking him to pose for a picture. Well, monks are monks, but children will always be children…

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Additional Photos by Manuel Librodo (manny) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2483 W: 86 N: 4070] (22032)
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