Ordaining for Learning Culture: Educational Conservation and Development of Buddhist Monk Universities for Isan People with Limited Opportunity
- 1 Faculty of Cultural Science, Mahasarakham University, Maha Sarakham, Thailand
Problem statement: Buddhist monk universities in Isan (northeast Thailand) have problems of lacking Buddhist monk students. The number of people ordained for learning decreases because Isan people do not like ordaining for learning. In order to adjust the condition of problem to catch up with current conditions, this research study was conducted. The purpose of this research was to examine the background, current conditions, problems and process of conserving and developing ordaining for learning at Buddist monk universities for people with limited opportunity in Isan. Approach: The research area covered Khon Kaen, Nakhon Ratchasima and Roi Et provinces. Each of these provinces had campuses of the 2 Buddhist monk universities located in the same province. These universities had continuously been proving education at the undergraduate and graduate studies level up to present. The research procedure used the qualitative research methodology. Data were collected from documents, related literature and field studies using survey, observation, interviews and focus group discussion from a group of totally 208 informants. The findings were presented by means of a descriptive analysis. Results: There were 2 universities: (1) Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University provided education at 3 locations: Khon Kaen Campus, first offered in 1986; Nakhon Ratchasima Campus, first established in 1987 and Roi Et Classroom, first established in 1999 according to the project for classroom extension by Khon Kaen Campus. (2) Mahamakut Buddhist University provided education at 3 locations: Isan Campus, located in Khon Kaen province, first established in 1990; Roi Et Campus, first established in 1994 and Koraj Education Center, located in Nakhon Ratchasima province, first established in 2006. For current conditions and problems of ordaining for learning at Buddhist monk universities for people with limited opportunity in Isan, Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University at present provides education at certificate, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctoral degree levels at 3 locations. Khon Kaen Campus offers 15 majors, Nakhon Ratchasima Campus offers 10 majors and Roi Et Classroom offers 7 majors. Mahamakut Buddhist University provides education at certificate, bachelor’s degree and master’s degree levels at 3 locations. Isan Campus offers 18 majors, Roi Et Campus offers 13 majors and Koraj Education Center offers 15 majors. As for the problem conditions, both of the Buddhist monk universities in Isan were not supported by the government agency as they should be. There were limitations of curricular offering. There were problems of monk’s travelling and appropriate behaviors, these could cause people in general to decrease their faith in monks. They did not like ordaining for learning. The process of conservation and development of ordaining for leaning at Buddhist monk universities in Isan could be made by supporting each Buddhist monk university in Isan and enhancing people to be more interested in ordaining for learning to be a choice of education. It would be creation of educational opportunity. Different resources concerning education of people with limited opportunity could be accessed. Conclusion: Buddhist monk universities in Isan provide education at certificate, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctoral degree levels. It is educational opportunity extension, education for developing monks’ education, social development, economic development and dissemination of ordaining for learning culture at Buddhist monk universities in northeast Thailand to be widely known. Buddhist monks and novices can not have to travel to study further outside their domiciles.
Copyright: © 2012 Sanit Sumhiram, Songkoon Chantachon and Kosit Paengsoi. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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- Ordaining for learning culture
- conservation and development
- Buddhist monk universities in northeast Thailand
- people with limited education opportunity