the role of female followers, what should Buddhist women do?
Buddhism will prosper or decline depending on the establishment
of the four groups of Buddhists: monks, nuns, laymen and laywomen.
However, when we see some shortcomings in our society, we are
accustomed to pointing our fingers towards the monks holding
responsibility for the problems. In fact the monks are only
one of the four groups in Buddhist community. All of us, laymen
and laywomen, hold equal responsibility for the problems.
Buddha established the four groups of Buddhists, he wanted to
make sure that this establishment will be solid foundation.
Each one shares equal responsibility towards the development
of Buddhism. Three important factors are involved in this establishment
i.e. they have studied and understood the teaching, they put
the teaching into practice and they are able to defend and explain
the teaching correctly. As female followers of the Buddha, Buddhist
women must be aware to fulfil each one's duty and responsibility
towards this establishment.
Thai Buddhists tend to hold on to an attitude "If it is
bad, its up to the nuns, if it is good, it is up to the monks,"
that is, if the monks or nuns should do anything bad, it is
their business, we as laypeople should not interfere. This attitude
is harmful for the establishment of Buddhism. If we see one
of the four members of the groups do wrong we remain silent,
our silence, our non-interference, actually promotes wrong doing
and further harms the growth of Buddhism. It is therefore important
that each one of the Buddhist groups must bear equal responsibility
and see themselves as one united community. If one is doing
something harmful, it is going to harm the rest of the community
and with the age of globalisation the negative acts result in
a domino effect.