Chanting and offering rice, thus remembering the Buddha's custom of eating
once a day, take place at 10:30 a.m. After the ceremony, the monks have
lunch. They chant before and during the meal and remind themselves to take
food to sustain the body, not from greed or from a desire to beautify
"Let us reflect upon the human efforts that have made this meal possible,
and ask ourselves whether we deserve this offering. Let us rid ourselves of
greed and regard this meal as medicine to help us to see the truth and to
reach the great wisdom beyond."
Lunch is the main meal of the day for the Buddha did not eat in the
evening. In China, due to climatic changes -- being often much colder than
India -- this was changed. However, if the monks do eat, the food is taken
in the spirit of medicine. (Traditionally, in Korea, as monks did not eat
in the evening, they merely rubbed their grumbling bellies with a stone.
Thus evening food is referred to as "medicine rock," in Korean.)