Sunday 24 July - 9:30am - 2:00pm - 26 Hercules Street Long Gully
Buddhist monks and nuns observe a three-month "rains retreat" where they
should return to sleep in the same monastery each night, and avoid
travelling if necessary.
The three-month rains retreat is called "Waso"
or "Wazo" in Burmese, and "Vassa" in Thai.
For forest monks and nuns, the rains retreat is often a time of
intense meditation practise. For monks and nuns who live in monasteries
in towns and villages, the rains retreat is a time when their
involvement with the community continues, but they do not travel and may
try to set more time aside for meditation or study.
Waso is a small festival held in the place where monks or nuns will
return to sleep each night. Monks or nuns will lead the community in
chanting in Pali (the ancient Buddhist language) and then the community
presents the monks or nuns with new robes and necessities they
will need during the rains retreat.
The timing of Waso depends on the
lunar calendar, but is in July in the Western calendar.