Thursday, June 7, 2012

An Easy-going and Relaxed Canadian Monk, and Lorry Who’s Become my Hands and Feet

This is a translation of Sunim's blog in Winnipeg, originally posted on June 7, 2012.

Translated by Ian and Henry Haight (original post:

The person on the right is the monk Fredrich Louis Ulrich. They call the monks “sensei” (instructor in Japanese) over here.  He is currently 78 and is French. Fredrich also stated that he will work until the age of 90 and will retire. He said that he was late today because he was at another funeral today.  Fredrich seems to be a very relaxed and honest person. A lot of people asked me recently how long I am going to be a monk; I told them that in Korea monks do their job until they die. Once I told them that this was the reason why I am not married and I don’t visit my family.  They looked at me in shock.

It is Wednesday and for 3 days Lorry became my hands and feet and helped me go to the Korean Clinic, take care of business at the bank and buy goods. She is 60 years old and lost her husband a few years ago. Her father is about 90 years old and has a 69 year old girlfriend. he he.  They want to learn Buddhism but they don’t really have an instructor so they are very respectful. 

At the bike shop, I bought a new seat, but the owner said that since I am a “tourist bike monk,” the owner gave me the seat for free. Wherever we went, Lorry introduced me and explained what I was doing and I was so shy…even at the restaurant a person next to me said that he was a monk too. He invited me to Facebook with him. 

For 3 days in the Winnipeg Korean Clinic I had acupuncture treatment. I lost my sense of feeling in my right hand and the doctor told me it was because I gripped the handle of the bike pretty hard. The manager of the clinic said I would get all my treatments free because I was a monk traveling in a foreign area. What a great person!  I think I am in pretty good relationships with others ever since I came here.  Is that why I wanted to come to Winnipeg so badly?^^  My finger wasn’t completely normal but the doctor told me that it will get better in time.

This is the cell phone I got today. Through good communications, David was given a phone in lieu of money. I got a place where I could stay while I am here and just in case my internet is down, David gave this phone to me. The phone can only text and it is all in English. ☺ I can’t check my Facebook with this phone, and it’s funny that this is my phone but I don’t know how to use it.  Everyone is doing my work for me. I don’t know how this is possible but I think the term “blissful emptiness” from Buddhism fits the situation...the truth is empty and self-evident. Those that I didn’t know and those that I used to know are now helping me. According to sensei Frederich, it’s “good karma, nice karma.” That may be so. This phone only works in Canada so when I go to the United States, they said they would change it.

1 comment:

  1. Just read Sunim's second blog, and I just had to laugh! So interesting to read how he sees things, and interprets what is going on around him. Shows that the language barrier is real, even though what the heart needs and wants gets through loud and clear.

    FYI, it was my younger son I lost 8 yrs ago, in a moto-cross accident, not my husband. I had told this to Sunim and showed him a pic of myself and my son that I carry in my wallet. He commented on how handsome he was, and commented that it was a very dangerous sport. But with all the people he met, places we went to, maybe it just got a bit mixed up in his thoughts. Or maybe he misunderstood, and did think it was my husband.

    And yes, Sunim did laugh when I told him about my near 90yr old widowed father, and his newly acquired 65 yr old girlfriend! But they are not wanting to become Buddhists! Only me! So now I have to wonder how much Sunim understood of some of our conversations! Or perhaps it is an error in the translation, and Sunim was referring to me, as he did tell me to "study hard Lorry".

    There was a fellow sitting next to us in the restaurant where we had lunch. I had conversed with him a bit, but I have no idea how Sunim thought he was a Monk! Perhaps the fellow said he had been interested in Buddhism at one point in his life, but I don't remember him saying anything about Facebook either!

    I love what Sunim says at the end of this post, about "blissful emptiness".

    Lorry (Lorrell) Onosson