Amidst Coronavirus Thai Monks Recycle Plastic to Make Face Masks

As the borders close and public places shut down amidst the current coronavirus outbreak, a group of Buddhist monks near Bangkok has turned to their faith in order to help contain the spread of the virus. They have been making face masks from recycled plastic bottles to help prevent the spread of the disease, while simultaneously reducing plastic pollution as well.

Chak Daeng temple is popular for a campaign, led by its environmentally conscious abbot, that produces robes from the 15 tonnes of plastic waste it receives every year. Monks and volunteers weave synthetic fibers, which are extracted from the plastic, with cotton into piles of saffron-colored cloth.

Amidst Coronavirus Buddhist Monks in Thailand Recycle Plastic to Make Face Masks

Buddhist monk Chamnanwej Sutthiyano wears talisman face mask inscribed with spiritual incantations / Image: Lillian Suwanrumpha

However, since last month, Abbot Pranom Dhammalangkaro has initiated pivoting some of the production to making face masks in order to protect people from getting infected. An extra filter layer is attached to the inner lining that would help in shielding users from potential spray droplets.

Amidst Coronavirus Buddhist Monks in Thailand Recycle Plastic to Make Face Masks

Face masks from recycled plastic bottles amid concerns over the spread of COVID-19 at Wat Pak Nam Buddhist temple in Bangkok / Image: Lillian Suwanrumpha

Additionally, Wat Chak Daeng’s “talisman master” also writes a Buddhist prayer on the mask, suggesting that “to know the problem is to find a way to end the suffering.”

As per the Buddhist belief, finding the source of one’s troubles sets one on a path towards enlightenment, but Abbot Pranom admits the prayer will not work for everyone.

After seeing the rapid sessions of panic buying in the capital over the weekend, he urged the citizens to abide by Buddha’s teachings and remain conscientious to get through the coronavirus crisis.

Amidst Coronavirus Buddhist Monks in Thailand Recycle Plastic to Make Face Masks

Buddhist monk wearing a face mask made from recycled plastic bottles and inscribed with spiritual incantations / Image: AFP

This unique initiative is truly appreciable and something to admire in these tough times when the coronavirus pandemic is spreading its claws beyond comprehension.

Via: Channel News Asia 

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