The Ministry Of Health has released new standards for the types of food people should donate to monks. Alms givings are a hallowed part of Sri Lankan culture, and a good one, as it enables people to renounce the world and meditate and survive. Over time, however, it’s become cultural practice than a religious one and monks, who ideally eat minimally and mindfully, have been eating too much rich food, leading to these rather shocking stats:
Fifty percent of the island’s 40,000 venerated monks face the risk of diabetes compared to the national average of 10 percent and the clergy also suffers a higher risk of heart disease, the ministry noted. (LBO)
The guidelines are good, but the culture actually needs to change. The idea that everyone needs to ‘eat eat eat’ isn’t good for anyone, but especially not for monks.