Buddha Bodhivana Monastery serves as a training center for Buddhist monks, novices, and postulants. However, it also offers a supportive environment for individuals, families, visitors, and residents to learn about the principles of the Buddha’s teachings and cultivate those same qualities in their lives. The monastery is a place to study, practice, and develop the essential elements of the Buddha’s Path, including generosity, virtue, mental cultivation, wisdom, and compassion.
The monastery functions both as a dwelling for a resident community and a sanctuary for regular visitors, providing a spiritual presence in the world. The aim is to fulfill these roles through monastic training and freely share the fruits of this practice.
The Sangha, consisting of monks and novices, adheres to the Vinaya, the code of monastic discipline established by the Buddha. Following this discipline, the monastics live as alms-mendicants, leading lives of celibacy and frugality. Above all, this training is a means of living mindfully and reflectively, guiding individuals to keep their needs to a minimum, such as a set of robes, an alms bowl, one meal a day, medicine when ill, and a sheltered place for meditation and rest.
The Vinaya creates a strong bond between the Sangha and the general public. Without the daily offering of alms food and the long-term support of ordinary people, the Sangha cannot survive. By committing to this training, the Sangha sets an example worthy of support, fostering generosity, compassion, and mutual encouragement.
For the monastic Sangha, relying on others encourages a faith-based lifestyle that requires constant development of contentment and humility. For those who support the Sangha, the opportunity to give and share provides occasions for generosity and a joyful, direct participation in the spiritual life. The Sangha offers spiritual guidance through teaching Dhamma and by example, as dedicated and committed monastics living the holy life.