How to Become a Monk. Monks are renowned to spend the majority of their days in meditation because it helps them achieve a Zen-like frame of mind. The majority of people desire to reach a greater level of peace like monks but lack the knowledge necessary to accomplish so. For this reason, we are going to give you professional advice on how to become a monk in this post.
A monk, according to Wikipedia, is a person who lives a monastic lifestyle, either by themselves or in a community of other monks.
A monk might be an ascetic who willingly withdraws from society and lives a life of prayer and meditation, or he can be someone who decides to devote his life to serving all living things.
What Makes a Monk?
Serving a superior authority is the fundamental motivation for people to become monks. For Catholic monks, it is to serve God and the country, whereas for Buddhist monks, it is to serve Buddha. One needs to control their wants and interests in order to accomplish this. To stay focused on matters of the world and worldly attachments, one must do this.
Monks, however, would forego material belongings in exchange for the opportunity to connect with their inner man. Letting go of things that are so crucial to most people today is incredibly liberating to a monk.
Who Are Monks?
An individual who withdraws from society in order to focus on religious service is known as a monk. Monastic practices are seen in several major religions, most frequently in Buddhism and Christianity.
It requires dedication, years of training, and a life dedicated to learning. A person who wants to become a monk must be prepared to give up a lot of things.
How To Become A Monk
Give your religion your all.
Living in complete spiritual, bodily, and intellectual dedication to your chosen religion is what it means to be a monk. You start down the path to monasticism by making a strong commitment to your spiritual development. Daily study and multiple daily prayer sessions will be required for this. In every element of your life, make an effort to live out your beliefs.
Investigate several monastic orders.
There are notable distinctions even though the fundamental steps to becoming a monk are same in all orders. While monks of active orders leave the sanctuary to assist others, contemplative order monks spend the most of their time inside the walls of the monastery praying. Some active orders place monks in jobs that are located far from a monastery. In communal orders, monks interact with one another while working, praying, and eating. Monks in eremitic orders spend the majority of each day in their cells and do not socialize with one another.
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Decide to live a chaste life.
Every monastic community, regardless of religion or order, adheres to celibacy. Take a personal vow of celibacy to begin the monastic life. You can determine whether this is a feasible and realistic aim by using this exercise. When you approach a monastery to enroll, having successfully committed to celibacy will also demonstrate the depth of your dedication.
Become a communitarian
Living in a small community with other people is another feature of the majority of monastic orders. This entails sharing meals, lodgings, and in some situations, every material possession with another. By engaging in community living, you can start experimenting with this way of living.
Let Go Of Your Material Things.
Monks of all religions abstain from owning material belongings and live in community with others. Monks occasionally give their entire estate to the church or temple. Giving aside some of your current possessions and beginning to live a simpler life will allow you to experience this style of life and get closer to becoming a monk. It is expected that anyone wishing to become a monk has not been in a committed relationship for at least five years.
This is the case because the monastery wouldn’t want to pardon you only to have problems lead you to return. The Monastery does not, however, support divorce. A parent may not be permitted to become a monk or nun. Children are strong links that would be challenging to break. For monks, there is no upper age limit. However, the final judgment regarding one’s age rests with the individual temples and abbeys.
The Quickest Way to Become a Buddhist Monk
Becoming a monk in Christianity
Check out a monastery
One of the first actions you must take to become a monk is to go to a monastery. Potential devotees are welcome to visit monasteries. Some places let you remain for a couple of days at a time. You will gain knowledge of the monastic lifestyle and monks’ duties throughout these visits. This will give you a taste of monastic life so you can decide if it’s for you.
Turn Into A Novice.
You can enroll as a novice and go into the sanctuary after visiting a monastery and deciding that you want to dedicate your life to it. Your first step toward becoming a Christian monk is this practice, often known as “observership.” You will learn about every facet of monkhood as a novice. The monks will also assess your personality as part of this practice to determine whether it is suited for monastic life.
There could be more than one level of novicehood depending on the order. It can take up to a year for this. You should refrain from selling your home or car while you’re still learning the ropes. This is due to the fact that some individuals opt against continuing after becoming a monk.
Turn Into A Postulate.
You might be asked to become a postulant or destined monk after completing your novice hood. You might be given extra responsibilities in the monastery at this point. This phase of training gives you a richer experience that will help you choose whether this is the right vocation for you while also giving you a chance to impress the monks.
Make brief commitments.
You will be required to make “temporary vows,” pledging yourself to the way of life and principles of monastic life for the duration of your stay in the monastery. The particular order will determine how these vows are different. But they will almost likely include an intense commitment to God, an inclination toward celibacy, and a rejection of earthly possessions.
Make your last vows to live a monastic life.
You will eventually be invited to permanently enter the monastery after your time as a postulate. You will accept perpetual monastic vows and be ordained as a Christian monk.
Becoming A Buddhist Monk
Buddhism has been practiced for more than 2,000 years. It provides a way out of the suffering that is a part of being. Buddhist monks decide to dedicate their entire lives to achieving this aim.
Becoming a monk doesn’t need much. You must have a fundamental understanding of Buddhism, which you probably already have if you plan to become an ordained minister. Otherwise, all you need is a true desire to put Buddhist Monk teachings into practice.
Study the teachings of Buddhism.
You must be well knowledgeable about the Buddhist tradition, well-read on Buddhist teachings, and well-versed in Buddhist thought before you may approach a teacher about becoming a Buddhist Monk. Start your path to monastic life by committing yourself to Buddhist studies. Become a member of a Buddhist temple or sangha. There are temples in practically every nation, and Buddhism is a widely practiced religion.
You can gain important insight into what it’s like to be a part of a Buddhist Monk community, which is essential for becoming a monk, by practicing Buddhism as a layperson. Before making the decision to become a Buddhist Monk, you should first establish yourself as a regular member of the community for several months or even years.
Find a spiritual mentor or guide.
A key component of becoming a monk is learning from a mentor. You can go more deeply into Buddhist teachings and learn what is expected of you as a Buddhist Monk with the help of one-on-one education.
Start collaborating with someone who can instruct you on everything. Ask those in local Buddhist Monk community for suggestions if you need help finding a mentor. You can connect with possible mentors by attending Buddhist Monk leaders’ talks that are frequently invited by temples.
Getting Ready for Monastic Life
Meditate for a while. Daily meditation and a deliberate attempt to alter the way the mind functions are prerequisites for becoming a Buddhist monk. You will meditate for a large portion of the day if you live in an abbey. To that end, it is suggested that you begin by meditating for five minutes a few times a day, and as you get more at ease, lengthen your sessions. This will assist you in perfecting the art of meditation, which is what a monk would practice.
Be ready to provide for yourself for two to three years.
You must give up your regular work in order to become a Buddhist monk. So it is essential that you make arrangements for your own support in the first few years. Buddhist Monk adhere to the Vinaya, a code of conduct that prohibits them from working regular jobs. While some temples may support you with the money they make through their public services, others may not. You are supposed to have enough money to maintain yourself because of this.
Get Ready to Give Up Your Worldly Things.
Buddhist Monk led simple lives as mendicants with no possessions beyond what is necessary for an easy standard of living. You will receive daily supplies of clothing, toiletries, and other comforts. Electronics, pricey clothing or shoes, and anything else seen as a luxury item are not permitted. Items that might arouse emotions like greed, envy, or possessiveness are forbidden for monks to own.
Recognize That You Will Find Your New Family in Your Buddhist Community.
Your entire life will be devoted to your Buddhist Monk community once you join a monastery. Your days will be devoted to helping others, and you’ll concentrate on them throughout the day. You won’t speak to your family much, and you’ll be urged to consider the Buddhist community to be your new family instead. You might wish to talk to your family about this and let them know what will happen before pursuing ordination. Candidates who are married or have other close relationships are sometimes not accepted by monasteries. Since there are no extraneous distractions for single persons, they can devote themselves more fully to the Buddhist Monk teachings.
Prepare To Make A Chasteness Promise.
Buddhist Monk don’t indulge in any type of sexual activity. This is the reason why some temples forbid their nuns from mingling with the male monks unless it is necessary for conducting regular temple business. It is advisable to put chastity into practice before becoming ordained to see if you are suitable for a life of celibacy. The goal is to direct the energy you would typically devote to sex toward things more important than yourself.
Make a decision regarding the commitment you want to make.
Ordination is viewed as a lifetime commitment in various religious traditions. There are some traditions, though, where pursuing ordination for a few months or years is great. For instance, before getting married or starting their careers, many men in Tibet complete two- or three-month ordinations to help them develop their spiritual selves. Verify if the monastery you are considering entering gives the amount of dedication you want. If you’re unsure, you could pursue a two- or three-month ordination first and a longer-term one later.
Begin your training in an abbey.
You will be ordained at a particular abbey if you decide you wish to become a Buddhist Monk. To be ordained in the abbey, one must fulfill the conditions specified by the abbey. In some situations, an elder who has determined you’re a superb candidate to become a monk must extend the invitation to become ordained.
Attend a ceremony of ordination.
The ceremony, which can only be conducted by an ordained monk, will commemorate your desire to convert to Buddhism. The monk will give you the Three Jewels and the Five Precepts during this ceremony. Your Buddhist name will also be given to you. An affirmation ceremony will be held in place of an ordination ceremony if you practice Shin Buddhism. The objective of the affirmation ceremony is the same as that of ordination.
Pay attention to your teacher’s instructions.
If you took part in an ordination ceremony, the ordained monk who presided over it would often be your teacher. Specific instructions for the monastery you are joining will be sent to you.
Adopt The Bodhisattva Promises.
A person who dedicates their life to the Buddhist dharma is known as a bodhisattva. The vows emphasize performing acts of compassion, making an effort to assist all people, and attaining knowledge. You can embody your highest ideals through the vows. You will frequently recite them as they pledge your commitment to a life of selfless service.
FAQs on How to Become a Monk
How much does a monk get paid?
As of May 29, 2023, the average annual pay for a Monk in the United States is $43,926 a year.
How long does it take to become a monk?
Simple vows are a period of temporary commitment and usually lasts three years. The period of temporary commitment is, however, a serious commitment and is a time for continuing growth. During these years, the monk receives a broad theological foundation, as well as some practical experience in apostolic activities.
Are there monks in Nigeria?
Ewu Monastery is home to a community of Benedictine monks in Ewu Esan, Nigeria. St Benedict monastery was founded in 1979 by a group of Irish monks from Glenstal Abbey Ireland, and an English monk from Ampleforth Abbey: Columba Cary-Elwes, OSB.
What do monks do all day?
The monks go on alms round in the morning and the only other activities of the day are morning chores, breakfast, and the main meal. At 7:00 pm, the community gathers for pūjā, meditation, the taking of the precepts by the laity and a Dhamma talk.
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