Such a powerful and beautiful post. These guys always have beautiful messages to share with the world through social media:
I’ve been asked why I no longer wear the monastic robes, and here’s my first attempt to explain my reasoning. Although the robes initially made sense and served as a constant reminder for myself and others of the vows I had taken, continuing to wear them felt counterproductive to my belief that we are all one. What the robes essentially did was create a separation between me and others, but in my mind there isn’t any, so wearing them felt false (am I making any sense?)..
When all the monks in a monastery wear the same robes with the same haircut, the robes make perfect sense (everyone is the same, there is no separation, I am you, and you are me, and we are one). But outside of a monastery, the robes do the exact opposite - they create separation. People treated me differently, I felt like I was bringing attention to myself, and that wasn’t my intention at all. I’ve never been a big fan of tradition because people tend to cling to it even in the face of obvious failure, so as my teachers once said to me, “You don’t need the robes. Why can’t you just be the guy in town with the bright eyes?”
I’ve met many of you during the book tours last year across the U.S. and U.K., and let me ask you this.. wasn’t it (isn’t it) easier to relate and connect when there isn’t a maroon wall between us? I think it is.. so there you have it. Blending in with the crowd and doing good deeds in secret, our lives is our message. And that’s what it’s all about. —Timber Hawkeye