Staying in Newbury Buddhist Monastery

Newbury Buddhist Monastery (fondly referred to as NBM) is one of a very few monasteries in the world and the very first in Victoria, Australia that support both Bhikkhu and Bhikkhuni training, ordination and practice.

In providing a conducive environment and adequate support for the further development of their Buddhist practice in accordance with dhamma and vinaya, we welcome both monastics and devotees incline in the Buddhist Path to stay at NBM subject to:-

  • suitability of guest to the monastic environment through a review system, and
  • accommodation availability.

Monastics staying at NBM are expected to observe the precepts according to their ordination category. All lay practitioners who stay at the NBM are required to follow the 8 precepts. Please refer to the Conditions of stay – page 13-14 for more details.

Applicants need to understand that:

  • Priority of accommodation will be accorded to
    • BSV members and NBM volunteers on special tasks,
    • Applicants who have taken refuge in the Triple Gem and practising 5 precepts as a way of life.
  • There is no formal meditation teaching at the monastery; please ensure that you are able to meditate independently while living in accordance to Buddhist principles within the 4-fold community environment.
  • Applicants should be in good physical and mental health:

Note: Please note there are no professional doctors or therapists at NBM who are qualified to provide treatment for mental or physical health conditions.

  • Applicants are expected to follow daily routine, attend work meetings and participate in work and group activities.
  • Lay-guests must have sufficient funds to support their personal needs such as onward travel and especially if one has special dietary/medical requirements. 

We are happy to inform you that NBM is now open to stay-in guests with effect 11 March, 2022. Friday. For the continued safety of guests and NBM residents, all guests are requested to kindly do a RAT one day before intended date of stay, and submit the negative result prior to arrival at NBM. Face masks must be worn indoors if distancing is not possible.

Thank you for your understanding; may we all continue to stay safe and healthy on the noble 8-fold path. May NBM offer you the conducive spiritual support to enhance your practice towards purification and peace.

With Loving-kindness and Blessings of the Holy Triple Gem.

Gender Segregation Monastics

As monastics follow many rules in regards to celibacy, there are sensitivities around gender segregation that must be observed.

 No monk or nun is to have lay-visitors visiting them in their private residence (regardless of gender). Any visits/meetings with laity should take place in public areas such as: the dining hall or if absolutely necessary, in the library or office.

Monks and nuns are not to sit down and speak with members of the opposite gender (be they a monastic, lay, stranger, friend or relative) without the presence of a third person who understands (what constitutes lewd speech) within eye and ear-shot. These conversations should take place in public areas as mentioned above.

Any conversations between monks and nuns should be carried out in a public place (not a concealed area) with a chaperone (of either gender) being present.

Laity

Nobody is to have visitors visiting them in their private residence regardless of gender. Any visits/meetings with other laity should take place in public areas such as the dining hall or if necessary, the library (when no-one is using). This is to prevent rumours and to preserve quiet around private quarters to support meditation.

  • Please do not hang around Sangha members unless there are pressing matters to resolve. In particular, these times should be avoided:
  • When Sangha members are working at the office during the day.
  • When the place of meeting is secluded from others so that there is limited chance of being seen or heard by another person (ie. In the middle of a paddock away from everyone else). This pertains only to members of the opposite gender.
  • After meditation sessions. Please retire to your own room after meditation sessions (or assist with breakfast if after morning session) and do not hang around for idle chit-chat.

We understand that people can develop strong connections with Sangha members. Excessive connection-making however can be considered by others to be a form of intimacy and may give rise to unwanted rumours and gossip (especially if it involves a member of the opposite gender). Any guests that spend excessive amounts of time hanging-out unnecessarily with monastics may be asked to leave the monastery.

Lay Precepts
The 8-Precepts are to be maintained at all times at NBM for lay guests. Exceptions can be made in consultation with the NBM Sangha Representative/s. Relaxation of rules are usually in regards to chronic medical issues.The 8 precepts will be given by a monastic on the full-moon & new moon days. All lay guests are to attend and recite the precepts as a reminder of their commitment to the practice. This recitation will take place in the meditation hall at 7pm. This is followed by a community meeting (when necessary) to discuss any issues that affect community living that may arise during the fortnight. Only residents who stayed 3 months or more may participate in such meetings, if any.

The 8 precepts are as follows:

  1. I undertake to abstain from killing beings (includes insects).
  2. I undertake to abstain from taking what is not given.
  3. I undertake to abstain from any sexual activity (in public or private).
  4. I undertake to abstain from false, harmful speech.
  5. I undertake to abstain from the use of intoxicants (includes alcohol and any recreational drugs).
  6. I undertake to abstain from eating after the midday meal (exceptions can be arranged for legitimate health concerns such as pregnancy & diabetes etc.).
  7. I undertake to abstain from dancing, singing, music and watching entertainments*, and from using beautifying objects i.e. jewellery, perfume, cologne, fragrant antiperspirants, make-up etc. (*includes entertainment through modern hand-held technological powered gadgets like smart phones, i-pads, laptops…)
  8. I undertake to abstain from indulging in high and luxurious seats and beds.

If you are from Victoria, please bring the following:-

  • A sleeping bag, a fitted sheet, a blanket and any other bedding items you may need.
  • Pillow and pillow case.
  • Warm clothing – jackets, socks, beanie etc.
  • Towel, toiletries, personal hygiene items, any personal medications.
  • A set of work clothes for outdoor work.

Some other optional items you can consider bringing:

  • Raincoat / Umbrella.
  • Hot water bottle (the one used in bed to keep warm)
  • Meditation Cushion (if you need a special one or need one in your room)
  • Slippers, Joggers & Warm shoes.
  • Small blanket / wrap for hall use
  • Drinking Water Bottle / Vacuum flask
  • Torch & alarm clock

You are welcome to bring your own meditation cushion if you wish. There are meditation cushions available in the meditation hall. The venue has chairs, should you wish to meditate in a chair. It’s important to bring clothing that allows you to sit on the floor or a chair comfortably. All clothes should be in good repair and appropriate to the occasion (i.e. please don’t wear pyjamas outside your accommodation block). Loose clothing affords better flexibility when sitting cross-legged (i.e. tracksuit pants or cargo pants etc.).

Time Activity
04:30am Wake and rise unless ill. One can always get up earlier.
05.00am Chanting followed by Group Meditation.
06:30am Assist in breakfast preparation
06.45am Breakfast and Clean–up.
07.45am Work meeting and work. (Note: cold weather: work from 2pm to 4pm)
10:00am Stop work & clean–up (Bell will be rung)
10.45am Main meal – please follow meal procedure.
Clean-up. One monastic will remain to speak to laity after dana.
12:15pm/12:30pm Dhamma talk or Q&A with a monastic (monk or nun). Chaperone if needed.
01.00pm Personal time.
06.00pm Evening drinks (for laity: in dining hall).
07.00pm Group meditation.
Wednesdays: recorded talk by Ajahn Brahm
Saturdays: Sutta discussion
08:30pm Personal time.

Temperature: Newbury’s temperatures can range from lows of around -2.6 °C to highs of around 38 °C. The colder months are usually from May to October. In any case, it’s safer to bring warm clothing as there has been instances of light sleet or snow in as late as October.

Rain: Newbury tends to have an above average level of rainfall compared to the rest of Victoria. It’s best to bring some clothing suitable for wet-weather conditions.

Sun: The availability of direct sunlight is patchy as there is usually some form of cloud cover for most of the year. The driest and sunniest days tend to be from November to March.

Newbury can be cold even during summer. Before coming to NBM, please check the temperature and bring some warm clothing.

Please click here to check Newbury Weather Forecast.

Stay Application

NBM requires up to 3 business days to process applications.

Support the Operating Cost

There is no charge to stay at NBM for Monastics or Laity. However, any donations are welcome for the sustenance of NBM.

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The goal of this meditation is beautiful silence, stillness, and clarity of mind.

- Ajahn Brahm
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