Śrāmaṇerī

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A young Buddhist nun in Thailand
Buddhist nuns in Ban Pha Cuk, Thailand

A śrāmaṇerī (Sanskrit; Pāli: sāmaṇerī; traditional Chinese: 沙彌尼; pinyin: Shāmíní) is a novice nun in the Buddhist tradition. Male novice monks are called śrāmaṇeras.

Etymology[edit]

The literal meaning of śrāmaṇerī is the female form of "small śramaṇa," that is, a small renunciate, where "small" has the meaning of boy or girl.

Overview[edit]

A woman is to be ordained, according to the traditional vinayas, by both a monk and a nun, first as a śrāmaṇerī. Śrāmaṇeras and śrāmaṇerīs keep the Ten Precepts as their code of behaviour, and are devoted to the Buddhist religious life during a break from secular schooling, or in conjunction with it if devoted to formal ordination.

The Ten Precepts upheld by śrāmaṇerīs are:

  1. Refrain from killing living things.
  2. Refrain from stealing.
  3. Refrain from unchastity (sensuality, sexuality, lust).
  4. Refrain from lying.
  5. Refrain from taking intoxicants.
  6. Refrain from taking food at inappropriate times (after noon).
  7. Refrain from singing, dancing, playing music or attending entertainment programs (performances).
  8. Refrain from wearing perfume, cosmetics and garland (decorative accessories).
  9. Refrain from sitting on high chairs and sleeping on luxurious, soft beds.
  10. Refrain from accepting money.

After a year or at the age of 20, she will be ordained as a full bhikṣuṇī (Pali: bhikkhuni).

The Theravada Vinaya has 311 rules of discipline for bhikṣuṇīs.

Within Chinese society, as an example, members of the Sangha are expected to renounce family connections and accept the Sangha as their family.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]