monastery and monastic lifeThe Sangha, or the Order of Buddhist Monks and Nuns, was established by Shakyamuni Buddha thousands of years ago as a lifestyle devoted to putting the Dharma into practice. Life as a monastic is quite rigorous in Dharma Realm Buddhist Association with a full day of spiritual practice, study, and community work. In addition, there is great emphasis on how one lives in community harmoniously and respectfully.

Becoming a Monastic

If you are interested in becoming a monastic, you would first need to be a volunteer resident ( at one of our monasteries.

For men, after at least six months* of residence, you can apply to the Trainee Program where one takes the 8 precepts. Then, after training as a Trainee for at least another 6 months, you can apply to be a novice monk and take the 10 precepts.

For women, after at least two years* of residence in the monastery, one can apply to be a novice nun.

The length of training as a novice depends on the individual ranging from 2-5+ years. After novice training, one can then take the full precepts of a Bhikshu (Buddhist monk) or Bhikshuni (Buddhist nun).

* Note: All the time frames given above are the minimal requirements of training. Usually the training is longer as the monastic community considers many different factors before allowing someone to take the next step in the training. Also, the monastic aspirant needs to feel ready to make the necessary commitments as well.

You can find more information on how to be a volunteer at or email the volunteer coordinator at