Monastery-english version

8. června 2007 v 21:46 | Maddy |  Paddy´s faith
Monastery, a term derived from the Greek word μοναστήριον (monastērion), denotes the habitation and workplace of a community of monks, nuns, or other people set apart for a religious purpose.
Many religions have monastic traditions, in which a person commits himself to a religious life and lives apart from secular society in a monastery. The monastic community may be supported in several ways: by manufacturing and selling goods, often agricultural products such as wine, beer, and jellies, by donations or alms, by rental or investment incomes, and by funds from other organizations within the religion.
Monasteries may vary greatly in size, from a single building containing only one senior and two or three junior monks, to vast complexes and estates housing tens of thousands. In most religions, community membership is limited by gender and community members are required to remain celibate and own little or no personal property. The degree to which the monastic community is socially separate from the surrounding populace can also vary widely; some religious traditions mandate isolation for purposes of contemplation removed from the everyday world, in which case members of the monastic community may spend most of their time isolated even from each other. Others are focused on interacting with the local communities in order to provide some service, such as teaching, medical care, or evangelism. Some monasteries are only occupied seasonally, depending both on the traditions involved and the local weather, and people may be part of a monastic community for periods ranging from a few days at a time to almost an entire lifetime.
In common English usage, the term monastery is generally used to mean a community of male monks, while a convent or nunnery is a community of female nuns. Various religions, however, use these terms, and a number of other terms as well, in rather technical and specific ways. Usage can vary extensively by language, as English speakers try to choose the most appropriate translation for foreign institutions and organizations.
For a discussion of the history and development of monasteries see monasticism and abbey.


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