The Japanese Philosophy Blog

News and discussion of ancient and modern Japanese philosophy

Woodenfish 2013

The application for the 2013 Woodenfish Program has been released:

The 2013 Woodenfish Program

Humanistic Buddhist Monastic Life Program

Sponsored by the Woodenfish Project and Ayuwang Temple

Click here to download the application

Program Duration

Dates: July 4 to July 31, 2013

Deadline of Application: May 15, 2013

Program Content

Woodenfish: HBMLP is designed to immerse Westerners in Buddhist monastic life, and give them a first-hand experience with Chinese Buddhism that would likely be unavailable to them in their home countries.

Eligibility and Selection

Woodenfish: HBMLP accepts applications from students of any country and any academic major under the age of 40. Applicants from diverse academic disciplines and religious backgrounds are encouraged to apply. While a majority of participants are working toward an undergraduate or graduate degree, Woodenfish also encourages anyone involved in academic work or with an interest in Buddhism to apply. Applications will be reviewed by a panel of monastics, academics, and alumni of the program. Approximately 100 students will be offered admission to the 2013 program. The final application deadline is May 15th. Applications will be reviewed on a ROLLING BASIS, and decisions will be made within two to three weeks after the submission of one’s application. Since the selection is very competitive, applicants are highly encouraged to apply early to have a better opportunity for admission.

For more information on Woodenfish, please contact us at

A friend of mine participated in the program in 2007. As he described it in an email afterwards:

I went to a Buddhist monastery and lived as a sort-of monastic for a month. They woke us up at 5:30 a.m. and packed in a couple hours of meditation, five plus hours of class, a religious talk, some community service and even some free time in before 10:00 p.m., when we collapsed onto a pad to sleep.

Is this called torture? Near the end I felt more healthy and alive; I even lost a couple shackles of my ego. It’s a workout. Y'all should investigate the program:

If you’re interested in the program, be sure to check it out. It sounds like it will be an incredible opportunity to experience the teachings of the Buddha firsthand.