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Buddhist Monk Visits Two Washington Prisons

September 21, 2016

By Darla DePew

Olympic Corrections Center

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From left to right: Washington State Buddhist representative from Seattle Shirely Tam, Olympic Corrections Center Chaplain Jerome Bowers, Buddhist monk Tsering Motup, Prison Coordinator for Buddhists from California Chung Chun Chan. (Photo courtesy of Olympic Corrections Center)

FORKS – Buddhist Monk Tsering Motup recently visited two Washington Department of Corrections prisons. Motup traveled from International Bodhisattva Sangha in San Diego, California on Saturday, Aug. 6 to meet with incarcerated Buddhist followers at Olympic Corrections Center (OCC) in Forks and the Monroe Correctional Complex (MCC) in Monroe.

During his visit Motup met with inmates, prison staff, and visiting members of area Buddhist groups to talk about teachings of the Buddhist faith. His topics included the Five Precepts of Buddhism and the Noble Eightfold Path.

The Five Precepts are no killing, no stealing, no lying, no sexual misconduct, and no intoxicants. He talked about the Eightfold Path, considered to be one of the key teachings in Buddhism, according to the Secular Buddhist Association . Its concept encourages Buddhists to see life realistically without delusions, and focuses on self-restraint, discipline, and practicing mindfulness. Additionally, he answered inmate and visitor questions about the Buddhist faith.

"We were honored to be chosen as one of two institutions Tsering Motup and his team visited while in the State of Washington," said Jerome Bowers, OCC chaplain. "They were warmly greeted and appreciated by our population."

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