Day 17 of this program brought us to Jaipur. After a 6+ hour bus ride from Agra (home of the Taj Mahal) we arrived at 1:45 in the morning. Like the rest of the trip, we normally would be staying at the local Jain complex, but our arrival coincided with the 2012 Monk Conference. Not your typical Jain monks like the one we met back in our first week:
No, the monks at this conference are of the naked variety. Yes, you read that correctly. These naked monks have taken all the vows of Jainism, one of which includes the vow of non-possession. As a result, they literally have nothing. Here is the banner hanging on the gate at the Jain complex:
In response to this conference, we are staying at a hotel that is a 5-minute walk away, but we are still having lectures at the complex. There have been some awkward and uncomfortable run-ins with these monks, but for the most part we’ve been able to avoid needing to interact with them.