What does this mean and how can you participate?
Like the Buddha, Buddhist monks and nuns choose to leave behind all worldly possessions to live a simple life dedicated to spiritual practice in order to be liberated from unhappiness and to help relieve the unhappiness of others. Since all of their time is dedicated to practicing and sharing the Dharma, they do not work to earn a living in the same way as other people. So Buddhist monks rely on the generous offerings from the community for food.
During alms round, Buddhist monks hold their alms bowl, walk silently through the crowd and share their peaceful and mindful energy with everyone. Those who want to make an offering are welcome to approach and place food items into the alms bowl. Buddhist monks do not wish to harm any living being, but will graciously accept anything that is offered.
So if you see Bhante Ānanda in his maroon robes, please feel free to donate any food or beverages if you are moved to help. It is a very fulfilling experience.
Pictures from Trista Verhesen