In the last month, several bloggers have announced that they are sewing their own kesas. This is usually in preparation for jukai - a formal entrance into the sangha. The Japanese term kesa (Chinese: kasaya; Korean: kasa) derives from the Sanskrit term kasaya, which means "color that is not pure" or "bad color."
In the Buddha's time, kasaya
were constructed of discarded fabric - early kasaya were apparently constructed from shrouds - that was cleansed, redyed and stitched
together with prayers.
In my tradition, kasaya come from the Buddhist store, whereas in Japanese Zen traditions, students typically sew their own kasayas/kesa. No matter their source, these garments connect us directly back to the earliest sangha. When we put them on, we join together in an unbroken lineage of practitioners of the way.
Harry, who writes at We Angry Buddhists, describes his kesa here.
Greg, who writes at Upon the Path, describes his kesa here.
Jordan, who writes at Slow Zen: Asura Dharma, describes his kesa here.
Thank to each of you for your commitment!
Photo by Arunas Kulikauskas