Ceremony kicks off a 10-day course in which prospective monks and nuns study Buddhist history and Cambodian culture
A monk shaves the head of a young novice on Saturday.
HUNDREDS of young men and women travelled to Wat Soriya Puomeas in Kandal's Muk Kampul district Saturday to be ordained as monks and nuns at a 10-day course on Buddhist teachings, organisers said, adding, however, that the numbers were far fewer than expected.
"We will teach them how to be grateful to their parents, about the history of the Buddha, the value of Cambodian culture and about social morals," said Chhunn Noem, chief of the Cambodian Student Association based in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Chhunn Noem said the total number who made the trip, around 270, was far lower than the 500 he had anticipated.
"We only had a short time to promote this ceremony," he said. He said only about 40 women came to participate in the ceremony.
"Some of our mothers do not allow their daughters to become ordained because they think that nobody would be able to take care of the house, or they think their daughters are too busy with their studies," he said.
Chab Ny, 19, from Kampong Cham province, said he participated in the ceremony "to study about the Buddhist rules".
"I will be a monk forever because I think that 10 days is not enough for me to study," he said. Suom Heng, 46, said, "Today my son come to be ordained as a monk because he wanted to be thankful for me and his mother."