Buddhist monastics rely on the generosity of others. The alms round or piṇḍapāta represents a tradition in which lay people offer food to monastics to support their spiritual practice for the day. Going for alms is not begging. Monks and nuns simply walk or stand silently, receiving what is given in kindness by those who feel inspired. Unable to handle money or store food, Clear Mountain’s monastics rely completely on such generosity for their one meal of the day, taken before noon. As alms mendicants, they accept most of what is offered, though some try to maintain a vegetarian diet.

On weekdays, food offerings may be made during the alms round from 7:10 – 7:40 am near the Pike Place Market Starbucks (1912 Pike Pl). On weekdays and Sundays, offerings may also be made via food delivery to the Southworth monastic residence the day of from 9 – 9:30 am, or day before from 7 – 7:30 pm, in which case the residence stewards will receive the delivery and offer it the next morning. Detailed instructions regarding food delivery may be found in the FAQ sectionm, this video, and descriptions of alms routes below. On Saturdays, Tan Nisabho receives alms at Saint Mark’s Cathedral’s Bloedel Hall (1245 10th Ave E, Seattle) at 9 am before the weekly Saturday Morning Meditation, Teaching & Coffee Social.

Donors interested in offering are encouraged to note their names down on the Meal Offering Calendar below for the relevant day, excepting the Saturday morning gatherings. For more information on offering, see the Alms Round FAQ section below or watch this video detailing how to sign up for alms and send delivery. If you are unable to find an answer there, you may email [email protected].

Alms Routes

Select a tab to see the route for that day.

Weekdays

7:10 – 7:40 am, Pike Place Market Starbucks, 1912 Pike Pl, Seattle

On weekdays, Tan Nisabho takes the 6:20 am Kitsap Fast Ferry from his dwelling place in Port Orchard and walks to the Pike Place Market, where he waits near the Pike Place Market Starbucks (1912 Pike Pl), from 7:10 – 7:40 am, when those who wish to offer may do so. If you have trouble finding him, email [email protected]. On weekdays, donors unable to offer in-person may give via food delivery sent to the Southworth monastic residence. Note that, on Saturdays, Tan Nisabho receives a meal invitation before the weekly Saturday Morning Meditation, Teaching & Coffee Social at Saint Mark’s Cathedral and does not go for alms as usual.

Saturday

9:00 am, St. Mark’s Cathedral’s Bloedel Hall, 1245 10th Ave E, Seattle

On Saturdays, Tan Nisabho travels into the city and receives alms at Saint Mark’s Cathedral’s Bloedel Hall (enter behind the cathedral) at 9 am before the weekly Saturday Morning Meditation, Teaching, and Coffee Social.

Sunday

9 – 9:30 am morning of or 7 – 7:30 pm day before, by delivery to 3739 Nokomis Rd SE, Port Orchard

As there is no ferry downtown on Sunday morning, the day represents an opportunity for increased seclusion and practice. If one wishes to offer food, one may do so by delivery at 9 am the day of or 7 pm the day before, signing up on the meal offering calendar below beforehand. Detailed instructions on how to offer via delivery may be found in this video and the FAQ section below. Sadhu!

Meal Offering Calendar

The meal offering calendar can help donors decide when an offering would be most useful and note their intention to give. Those interested are encouraged to enter their names and if they plan on offering on alms round or by delivery (on weekdays and Sundays) in the meal calendar below by clicking this link. Please note that multiple people may sign up to offer on the same day, and that one should not feel discouraged from giving just because another donor has listed their name. If you have questions, see the FAQ section below, watch the instructional video, or email [email protected].

To note your intention to offer, click this link or the button below and enter your name and whether you plan on offering on alms round or by delivery (only on weekdays and Sundays) for the relevant day. If you plan to offer by delivery, please note the time. The changes, saved automatically, will become visible when you refresh this page. To navigate to the next month, use the tabs at the bottom of the sheet. If you’re having difficulties, watch this video detailing how to sign up and offer by delivery. Sadhu!

Meal Offering FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Ordering Food Delivery

For an instructional video on how to offer by delivery, click here.

On weekdays and Sundays, those interested in offering food but unable to do so in person may have their offering delivered via UberEats to the Southworth monastic residence the morning of any time from 9 – 9:30 am or the day before any time from 7 – 7:30 pm, in which case the residence stewards will receive the delivery and offer it the next morning. To do so:

  1. If possible, note your name and delivery time down on the Meal Offering Calendar for the day you hope to offer. Multiple people may offer on the same day.
  2. Visit UberEats and enter the address of the Southworth monastic residence listed below along with a delivery time from 9 – 9:30 am the morning of, or from 7 – 7:30 pm the evening before.  Note that the selection of available restaurants may default to the current time, either displaying more or less than will be available during desired delivery hours. Simply click on the field near the top of the page where the address is listed and change the delivery period from “Now” to the desired time and day, scrolling down to see a selection of restaurants. Generally, those most available at that time are located near the bottom of the page. Restaurants available for 9 – 9:30 am delivery include Family Pancake House, Subway, Alan’s Country Cafe, Denny’s, Slate Gate Cafe, Taco Bell, and numerous national chains. If one wishes to order vegan, plant-based options such as Gyro King’s Falafel Sandwich and Burger King’s Impossible Whopper are available for 7 – 7:30 pm delivery the day before. For information on what to offer, see the FAQ section: “How much and what should I bring when offering a meal to the monks?” Note that, as Clear Mountain’s monastics take only one meal each day, they eat more than an average person who consumes three meals a day would. Food left at the doorstep will be offered to Tan Nisabho by the residence stewards. As orders are occasionally paused or cancelled, make sure to check on the delivery through the UberEats during the scheduled delivery time to make sure it has been sent. If one has trouble using UberEats, GrubHub also delivers, though the proper time must be selected from the left-hand menu for available restaurants to appear. An instructional video may be found here.

Deliver via UberEats to:

Nisabho Bhikkhu
3739 Nokomis Rd SE
Port Orchard, WA 98366
United States

Note: To ensure the site properly displays available restaurants, see the instructions above. Deliveries may also be made via GrubHub, though the proper delivery time must be selected from the left-hand menu for available restaurants to appear.

How much and what should I bring when offering a meal to the monks?

How many meals per day can the monks consume, and when?

According to the Vinaya (the code of conduct for Buddhist monastics), monks are allowed to eat between dawn and midday. In the summertime, midday can be as late as 1:00 PM due to the longer days, while in the wintertime, the meal must be consumed by noon. Clear Mountain’s monastics tend to eat only one meal, after alms round or the meal offering, around 9 am. Thus, in a typical meal, they eat more than an average person who consumes three meals a day would eat. Please consider this when deciding how much food to bring.

Are there any food preferences or restrictions the monks have?

The monks are grateful for whatever food is offered for their daily sustenance. There are, however, a small number of foods that the Buddha prohibited monks from consuming. These foods include raw meat (for example sushi), or meat from an animal that was specifically killed to offer to the monks – for example, if someone slaughtered a chicken (or had one slaughtered) exclusively for the sake of the monks.

An aspect of the monks’ training rules is to receive whatever food is offered. After receiving the food they can decide what foods they wish to individually consume. Many try to maintain vegetarian diets.

If you have any questions about food items allowed, please ask the monks about these rules when you visit with them.

If you’re curious:

To learn more about the monastic rules that guide when and what the monks can eat, you might find the below resources of interest (but not necessary for offering meal dana).

The Latukikopama Sutta (Majjhima NIkaya 66) to understand why monks only eat in the morning time. 

You can learn more about the monks’ rules by reading this comprehensive guide for lay people, or the monks’ rules on food

Can I offer other items besides food for the meal?

Do the monks need food items other than the meal? (“allowables”)

In the Theravada Tradition, monks are allowed to consume “tonics” or what are also called “allowables” in the afternoon/evening/early morning to stave off weakness or illness. Once received, these items may be stored for up to seven days. (Some types of allowables may be stored for longer.)

Allowable items commonly offered include:

  • Plain dark chocolate (without food items such as nuts; dried fruit, milk, etc.). It is okay if the ingredients state: “May contain traces of . . .”. Lower percentages of chocolate are okay.
  • Coffee
  • Other beverages like kombucha, sparkling water etc.

If you are interested, you can read this explanation of the Vinaya rule about “tonics”. These tonics include: honey, sugar, molasses, and plain dark chocolate.

Are there other non-food and material goods needed?

The monks can sometimes use regular household items. These items are posted on the Support Page under the title: “Needed and Useful Material Items.” The needed items can be brought to the monastic residence, offered on alms round, or sent via any type of US parcel service. Please use this specific form of address if you send a package: 

Nisabho Bhikkhu
3739 Nokomis Rd SE
Port Orchard, WA 98366
United States