The Tendai Sect

Ordination in the Tendai Sect

The Tendai Buddhist Institute of East Chatham NY trains and ordains people during their annual 10-day "Gyo" which usually takes place in June. This program leads one through the stages of priesthood to full ordination in the Tendai Sect, and is approved and recognized by the Enryakuji on Mt. Hiei, the headquarters of this sect in Japan. Some prerequisites are required before undertaking Gyo. Monks residing at California Tendai Monastery, if they desire ordination, have adequate preparatory experience, and are granted permission by TBI, would be sent to the NY Gyo each year as part of the ordination process, and at least 3 of these training sessions would be needed for ordination.

Some Characteristics of Tendai Monastic Buddhism
  • Fire Rituals and Invocation of Fudo Myo-o
  • Scholarly Study of all Religious Subjects
  • Ascetic Practices, Fasting, Marathons of Walking
  • Visualizations of Mandalas and Other Esoteric Practices
  • Calligraphy - Particularly the Heart Sutra
  • Keeping the 10 Major and 48 Minor Precepts of the Mahayana
  • Preserving and Expounding the Lotus Sutra and Other Dharmas
  • Purifications, Cold-Water Ablutions and Prostrations
  • Transmitting the Life and Teachings of Sakyamuni Buddha
  • Offering Healing Ceremonies
  • Performing Priestly Services such as Weddings and Funerals
  • Protecting Mt. Hiei, as well as lands in America, as Wildlife Refuges
  • Maintaining Temples as Places where people can freely Make Offerings, Pray, Meditate, Chant, Study and Celebrate
  • Formal Teacher-Pupil Relationships which carry the Transmission of the Dharma
  • Providing the Opportunity for People to Live, Study, and Practice the Buddha's Way in Accordance with their Special Aptitudes
  • Making Offerings to the People
  • Pilgrimages
  • Actively Practicing Harmony with Other Sects and Religions
  • Generating Bodhicitta and Making Vows for the Benefit of All Sentient Beings
  • Development of Skillful Means and Perfection of the Paramitas
  • Relinquishment of Personal Desires and Practicing Harmlessness
  • Developing a Healthy Vegetarian Regime (shojin ryori)
  • Visiting Hospitals, Rest Homes, Schools, etc.
  • Organizing Convocations to Discuss the Dharma

Gatherings in 2005 and 2006 at the Tendai Buddhist Institute
California Tendai Home Page Visiting the Temple Becoming A Monk The Tendai Sect & Ordination Temple Life Consecration of Temple Photo Gallery Slide Show