Have you ever visited a Buddhist temple or a monastery? Usually we practice some special dress code and practices when entering into a Buddhist temple. As a Buddhist, I follow these practices in Sri Lanka. But I found those are almost same in the temples which I visited in Singapore and Malaysia too.
Recently I found an interesting site about monks, monasteries and meditation. After reading some posts shared on that site, www.monksareawesome.com I thought of sharing this post with some tips which are helpful for you when visiting Buddhist Temples and Monasteries.
Things you should know before Visiting Buddhist Temples and Monasteries
Wear appropriate clothes
When you visit to a Buddhist temple or monastery, it is important to pay attention to your dress. Wear appropriate clothes that cover your shoulders and long enough below the knees. When you enter into the temple, you need to remove your shoes and usually you have to walk inside the temple on bare foot. If you wear hats, caps or even sunglasses, remove those when you enter into the temples. We believe these as respecting the Lord Buddha and his teachings. (Dharma)
Not only Sri Lanka temples, even in Singapore temples like Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, we obey to these rules. If you wear sleeveless dress or short pants, then expect to receive a shawl or a sarong to cover you.
Behavior inside the temples
Buddhist worshiping methods always connect with meditation. There are people who practice meditation inside the temples. Be quiet and respectful in your each and every behavior. Usually people offer flowers and burn incense sticks in the temples. You can follow the same and enjoy the calm and quiet peaceful environment.
Buddhist temples and monasteries are full of beautiful arts and paintings. Some of the temples are with historical values and the paintings are many years old. Therefore taking photographs must be with care. Before you capture photos, just look around to see if there are warning signs asking not to take photos. Sometimes, it is requested not to use the flash simply because the paintings are well protected. In some temples, you cannot take photos at all. In Singapore tooth relic temple, you can’t take photographs inside the chamber that the sacred tooth relic is placed. Likewise, in Sri Lanka, there are temples which you cannot take photos at all.
You also need to pay attention when you pose for the photographs. Simply, don’t take pictures with Lord Buddha with different (funny) actions such as keeping your hands on statues, sitting, leaning on statues. Always be respectful as Buddhists pay much respect for their religion and Lord Buddha.
You can give Donations
This is not required or not a must. But still, if you like you can donate to the temple or monastery. Usually temples are free to enter. Even if you want, you can find free accommodation in most Sri Lankan Buddhist temples including food. In return you can donate to the temple too. There are boxes in most temples which you can insert your donations including coins.
Above are some tips which are helpful if you visit Buddhist monasteries and temples. Have you ever visited a temple or monastery? If so how was your experience?
yes,it is part of culture and traditions…
Great tips. It always saddens people that some people don’t bother with these basic respect things that you mention, like dressing appropriately for the destination.
yes,most of the time people don’t know and sometimes they just ignore.
Beautiful photos and good tips too 🙂
Have a tiptastic week 🙂
I have visited a great many on my travels throughout Asia. Delightful post.
Visit Keith’s Ramblings!
thanks,hope you had a great time in temples…
I found your post very interesting! Could you share more about the sacred tooth relic?
Actually it is one of the tooth of Lord Buddha.In Sri Lanka,we worship and consider as sacred.You can read this post : https://leisureandme.com/sri-dalada-maligawa-sri-lanka/
Also there is another tooth relic temple in Singapore:https://leisureandme.com/singapore-buddha-tooth-relic-temple/
thanks for sharing these tips. Very useful esp for the non-Buddhists like myself 🙂
yes,most of the time non-Buddhists don’t know these..Glad to know it is helpful.. 🙂
What beautiful pictures, we went to China and while there were able to visit an unknown Monastery, it was amazing inside. Thanks for the Linky!!
These are interesting tips – thank you. I have never visited a monastery but would love too.
Very interesting! Thanks for sharing. Beautiful photos!