The monks in New York

“I began this project with the idea that I believe Buddhism, or the middle way of Buddha, is the journey of each person’s mind by observing very tiny feelings and mood for control and cognition of who we are, no matter how this world has changed or how far it has gone. Ever since I was a teenager, when my mind began to distinguish the difference between the essential of life and sensuality, I have realized how hard it is to deny those unnecessary desires, and how hard to be a monk. I want to understand how monks restrain their passion in a world full of temptation and defilement. Looking at my own faith, I found no answer; I don’t know what the monk’s life is. Even in the world of photography, there are so many photographs of monks from the straightforward perspective of faith; we rarely see “life.” And that is what I want to represent, A WAY OF LIFE for people who firmly stand firm in the year of 2000, applying the method discovered and established for more than 2000 years ago: don’t go too hard or too easy, stay simple.”

“Cameras or this kind of convenient stuff is just like a gun. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” a monk said.

“It’s Personal” is a story of a group of Thai monks living life abroad, in the melting pot–New York. They who have decided to carry on the eastern method while living in and adapting to life in a western land. As a person that grew up in a Buddhist country, Thailand, I’m a Buddhist who learned my Buddhism abroad. “It’s Personal” is where I have learned what my personal journey is.

“I am not sure about the appropriate image of the monk’s life in other countries, but some photos in this story are controversial for Thai people. However, I would like to say that I started and ended this story with respect for the subjects. As I mentioned earlier, “I do believe that this is the journey of each person’s insight,” and it has never been easy.”