Forest Monasteries generally follow a similar routine everyday. In the morning monks will wake and get ready for their morning sitting and morning chanting. After that they will go on alms round for food for the day. They come back set up and get ready for the meal. When they eat the meal this is done in silence, maintaining the thought that the food is just for maintaining the body, not pleasure. After there is personal time to do sitting and walking meditation. In the afternoon there is a chore time to clean up the monastery. After their is some drinks to sustain one’s energy. In the evening is meditation and chanting. After this there is time for personal practice and to rest till the next day.
Activities in the Monastery:
Done twice a day – morning and evening. This is where monks and laypeople will chant words to recollect the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha. A way to bring wholesome thoughts as well as to calm the mind.
This is done to train the mind. One will use a meditation object where they will direct their mind through mindfulness. Usually, meditation of the breath is advised, but other meditations can also be done in conjuction or instead of. The aim is to develop concentration; and use this as a means to develop wisdom.
This is meditation in the walking posture. Mindfulness is kept at the feet or contemplating on one’s meditation object while walking back and forth about 25 paces.
Monks generally eat once a day before 12pm. They will go on alms round to the nearby villages and houses in order to get food for the day. This is usually done bare-feet and with mindfulness. They then will come back and eat the meals in their alms bowls.
Sweeping the Monastery
In the forest many of the paths are often filled with falling leaves. These are swept daily to keep the place clean, but also so that at night the paths will be clearly visible.