top of page

Kathina 2019

Ti-Ratana Lumbini Garden celebrated its 10th Annual Kathina Celebration on the 10th November 2019 in Bandar Puteri, Puchong. Around 150 attendees participated in the Kathina Celebrations.

Kathina Procession around Bandar Puteri, Puchong.
Kathina Procession around Bandar Puteri, Puchong.

What is Kathina?

Held in October or November of the Western calendar, Kathina is organized by lay people in order to present monks with new robes. One robe is ceremonially presented as the Kathina robe to the head of the monastery, to be given to the monk who is, at least in theory, to be the most virtuous. He will be chosen by the abbot.

The Most Venerable Datuk K. Sri Dhammaratana Nayaka Maha Thera, Buddhist Chief Monk of Malaysia (3rd from right) at our Kathina 2019 Celebration.
The Most Venerable Datuk K. Sri Dhammaratana Nayaka Maha Thera, Buddhist Chief Monk of Malaysia (3rd from left) at our Kathina 2019 Celebration.


Vassa, also called Rains Retreat, is the three-month annual retreat observed by monastic practitioners. Taking place during the rainy season, for the duration of Vassa, Bhikkhus remain inside monasteries and temple grounds.In some monasteries, monks dedicate the Vassa to intensive meditation. Some Buddhist lay people choose to observe Vassa by adopting some practices such as going vegetarian.

The offering of the Kathina Civara.

Origins of Kathina Practice

The scriptures relate that 30 monks were traveling together with the intention of spending the retreat season with the Buddha. However, when the full moon of July (the start of the retreat) arrived, they had not reached their destination, and according to custom they were required to stay where they were. So, it is told, the monks were disappointed and spent the 3 month retreat away from their teacher.

The beautifully lit Main Shrine Hall Altar on Kathina Day.

At the end of the retreat, the monks finished their journey to see the Buddha. Coming to hear of their disappointment, he was moved to give them a teaching that would uplift and inspire them. He suggested that they should make a new robe together n the monks set about sewing a robe. In those days, d method used involved spreading d pieces of cloth on a frame and stitching them together. This frame was called a Kathina. 

The robe is made, according to ceremonial prescription, by sewing patches together in such a way as is said to imitate the patchwork of the paddy fields familiar to the early monks on their travels. The community first presents the cloth for the robe, which is marked, cut n sewn by the monks on the same day, before being given back to the laity for presentation. Another meaning given to the word “kathina” is “difficult”, which suggests the arduousness of the vocation of a disciple of the Buddha, and the tenacity required to follow the Dhamma.

Devotees offering robes to the Sangha.

The robe-giving ceremony is also a reminder of the interdependence of the monastic order and the laity; the monks offer spiritual example and teaching to the lay followers and, in return, d lay people satisfy the monks’ basic needs. This interdependence was stressed by the Buddha, n has certainly been a vital factor in the survival and continuation of Buddhism as a living tradition. Its importance is highlighted by the fact that this ceremony is the only one involving the laity that gains its authority from the earliest Buddhist scriptures.

Lunch Dana offering to the Sangha.

We thank the Kathina organizing committee for their hard work in preparation for this successful and meritorious event: Bhante Wineetha, Bro Eng Ching Kiaw, Sis Kristy Ngiau, Bro Clarence Choong, Sis Felicia, Sis Mary Lim, Sis Michelle, Sis Sally Teh, Sis Judy Ong, Bro Ong, Bro Henry Hoh, Bro Rain Lee.

We would also like to thank all the volunteers who helped out on the event day.

Sadhu, Sadhu, Sadhu!

May you be well and happy.

22 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page