Question for monastics: How and when did you know that you were ready to ordain and become a monastic?

If you are a monastic, can you share your personal experiences leading up to the time and point that you realized that you were “ready to take the leap” and ordain as a monastic? How did you come to the point where you felt convinced about taking the steps necessary to become a monastic.

I asked a related question in a separate thread - so if you have any lessons, advice, suggestions, or guidance to share about the specific steps necessary to become a monastic, please share them here: Standard Ordination Procedure: What are the steps to ordain as a monastic?

In this thread, I am curious about learning about how you came to the realization that you wished to become a monastic. What experiences led up to the point where you realize that you were mentally ready to become a monastic?


You want my entire autobiography? :joy: What’s your real question?

If your question is, “how will I know if I’m ready?” I would say that the best way is to jump in and try! :slight_smile:


I sometimes find it easier to look at someone else’s life story and see which part of it seem to resonate with me than to look into my own mind and figure that out - perhaps I am “too close to myself to see myself clearly” and perhaps not skilled to figure this out by myself - hence the question.

:pray: :slightly_smiling_face:
I think I am afraid though.
Also, I have tried this approach of just jumping in without say prior preparation, and more often than not, it has set me up for failure lol :sweat_smile:

To be honest, I don’t mind! lol Especially the parts of your autobiography that you feel are particularly relevant to this question. I am sure that at least one person, if not more, who reads it might find it helpful and inspiring!


:joy: I see.

Yeah, I guess I will say that I was meditating every day, doing morning and evening pūjā in front of my home shrine, etc as a lay person for a couple years before I decided to go forth. I was fairly active at a local temple — attended weekly sutta study classes and even hosted their Kaṭhina one year. I also occasionally stayed at other monasteries further afield for a week or so at a time as my vacation days permitted.

Eventually I realized that my “normal” job wasn’t helping my practice (nor even the world!) nearly as much as “going full time Buddhist” would. So I tried it out, going on a month-long meditation retreat and then quiting my job to live/work at a retreat center for a while before I “officially” began looking for a place to ordain (which mostly involved a lot of traveling to different places and staying for 10 days or so at each to introduce myself and get to know the community, and they’ll let you know the “next steps” from there if there’s a possible fit).

So maybe that brief sketch can give you some idea of the various ways to “dip your toes in the water”


Yes, it did! Thank you very much for sharing your experiences, Bhante! :pray:


You’re welcome! May your journey be a fruitful one :smile: :apple: