THE NUN’S PATH IS ONE OF DISSOLVING BOUNDARIES.
To be a nun in Cambodia is not easy, says 24-year-old Kosorl. Her name in Pali sounds like Kosorla which means wholesome, while in the Khmer language it means “good deed.” Both meanings seem to fit the young Cambodian Obasica (student nun).
Her decision to become a nun was partly inspired by her mother, whom she accompanied to live in a pagoda when she was just 13 years young.
The Andeuk Pagoda is one of the few wats (pagodas) in Cambodia where nuns practice meditation along with their male counterparts. I met Kosorl and her mother for the first time at the Vipassana Center in Battambang in 2012, shortly after I arrived in Cambodia. She was 17 years young at the time, still a high-school student. About a year later, after she finished high school, she decided to shave her long, black, shining hair, depart from her colorful garments and become a nun too, like her mother and the other women around her.
Growing up, Kosorl listened to many Dharma talks and learned how to meditate. Helping the nuns in their daily services for the monks, before and after school, was her norm.
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