Upon the access of the Buddha's teachings, the practitioner who sincerely seeks the cessation of suffering (dukkha), engages in the practices of meditation, contemplation & reflection to deepen that understanding. As much as these practices are important, they come to fruition with only a proper livelihood of the Dhamma.
Whether you are a lay follower or a renunciant, the righteous conduct brining virtue that brings about wisdom and letting go is mandatory. With this the path to liberation completes.
Observances & Precepts
Precepts is not a mere discipline to abide by or follow, but a necessary restrainment and a training in the path towards liberation that would help abandonment of the fetters.
Training on precepts helps to prevent the unwholesome, brining about strength of spiritual character, clarity and wisdom, more than a mere restrainment , it further helps the practitioner to overcome avarice and unrighteous greed.
Householders' precepts training
Life long 5 precepts ( subject to daily renewal)
Lifetime 8 precepts ( subject to monthly renewal)
Monastic 8 precepts ( one to four times a month)
Monastic 10 precepts ( for a set period of time)
Renunciant precepts training
Ordained 10 precepts
The duration of Long term retreats range from 6 - 24 months. Practitioners benefit from the secluded Retreat environment to deepen their practice.
As you spend years in meditation and dharma practice, the need to go further in the spiritual path is considered as a progressing factor. The practitioners who wish to do so sre able to spend time fruitfully, taking time off from busy life styles.
Longterm retreats are usually for a smaller number of people where they practice Monastic 10 precepts and live that period as 'non-householder (Anagārika).
The combination of wholesome livelihood, renunciation to a certain degree will help the yogi to deepen the practice and would give a flavour of a 'renunciant's life.
Temporary ordination is not encouraged in the Sri Lankan tradition, however a monastic who has received temporary ordination in another country can come and practice in long term retreats in Sri Lanka such monastics can either practice in the forest or within the training facility.