context, a samanera
: , Sanskrit
: ) can be translated as novice monk. It literally means 'small samana
', or small renunciate, where 'small' has the meaning of boy or girl. In the Vinaya
(monastic discipline), a man under the age of 20 cannot ordain as a bhikkhu
, but can ordain as a samanera. The female counterpart of the samanera is the samaneri
. Samaneras and samaneris keep the ten precepts
as their code of behaviour, and are devoted to the Buddhist
After a year or at the age of 20, a samanera will be considered for the higher Bhikkhu or Bhikkhuni ordination (Pali: upasampada). Some monasteries will require people who want to ordain as a monk to be a novice for a set period of time, as a period of preparation and familiarization.
The issue of ordination is different for samaneras and samaneris; the rules governing higher ordination are different for samaneras and samaneris.
The female form of the samanera is the samaneri.