On the Harnham Farm

After a slight transportation/directions snafu, I arrived at Harnham monastery on Tuesday morning. I felt immediately welcomed, and sensed a closer atmosphere. Harnham is a smaller place surrounded by rolling hills of farmland. The sound of sheep bleating and cows mooing provide a soothing, pastoral setting. Although there isn’t much in the way of forest at the monastery, within the grounds are quiet gardens and conservatories, and many quiet spots. There is also a pond on the property which serves as a conservation area and a place for monastic dwellings, and a short walk away is a larger lake surrounded by forest.

The buildings are smaller cottages, and my room on the second floor seemed to me to the best in the house, looking out over the fields and hearing sheep nibbling on grass below my window. 

The abbot, Ajahn Munindo, seemed warm and welcoming, and the rest of the residents were as well. I found myself wishing I had scheduled more time here, as it became my favorite of the three monasteries I’ve been to. Perhaps someday I’ll be able to return for a longer visit.

The main meditation hall
Meditation hall at guest house
Quiet spot

Garden conservatory

Author: mettatsunami

In 2009 I was working full time in medicine, and living a life that was alienated from what I truly valued. While volunteering with a local hospice, I began to wonder: "What would I do differently if I had six months to live?". This began the impetus to change direction. While it has been a case of two steps forward, one step back in many ways, there has still been slow movement in the direction of a more authentic life. Since the pivotal decision to change direction, I have been a Buddhist nun, returned to lay life, changed Buddhist schools, returned to medicine part time, and then full time, quit again, traveled extensively, trained in yoga, spent time in several Buddhist monasteries, and am in the process of how to live according with Buddhist and yogic practice and values, and how to streamline this life into something worthwhile. In the Theravadan Buddhist practice, one of the daily reflections is "Has my practice born fruit with freedom or insight, so that at the end of my life, I need not feel ashamed when questioned by my spiritual companions?". That is my practice. My goal in this blog is to share the journey along the way.

5 thoughts on “On the Harnham Farm”

  1. I’m delighted (and a bit envious) to hear about your pleasant visits to Chithurst and Harnham. May all the stops on your journey be as enjoyable!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. wow both places look so nice, enjoy….

    I met an good friend yesterday, was a monk in Burma when I met him, and he had just done a retreat at a zen monastery near Astoria, great vow monastery….have you been? it looked really nice and a nice place to stay a few weeks or months which is closer to home….

    I had pancakes with jeed, she says hello, did I tell u that…her and ray are good and we laughed and had fun…..I will be back at abhayagiri in a few weeks and am on the list for winter retreat, will try to stay out of trouble until then, ha!!

    you stay out of trouble too, but all the time in the monastery will help

    with metta


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great to learn of your updates. Harnham looks beautiful! Please give my regards to Mark and Gricel if you are still with them!

    Carry on with love!


    Liked by 1 person

  4. So glad you are enjoying your visits to the monasteries and especially glad you are sharing your words of explanation and photos. It is almost as if we are all there with you.


  5. I have discovered recently the teachings of Luang Por Munindo, looking forward to meet him and visit Harnham soon:) Thank you for great pictures:)

    Luang Por Munindo – Going for Refuge to Reality


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