reflection wrote:I think this is all too generalized. Often there can be building / repair work, gardening also especially for lay people. And don't forget kitchen work can be quite tiring as well, cooking all morning, washing up, cleaning the kitchen etc. But on the other side also the little hours of sleep is not a general thing. You just need to sleep enough for your own body. On retreat I always slept about as much as back home, perhaps a bit less.
at my 8ish times at Bhavana Society(both retreat and non) i've done much heavy work like chopping and lugging around logs and other outdoor type stuff. I agree that a forest monastery can definitely have a lot of tiring work. of course it helps that I actually enjoy and often request the work, so I don't feel too drudgery about it.
at Bhavana, whether its a retreat or not, I'm usually in bed by 9 and up by 4am(most people actually wake up later, 4:30-5), thats 7 hours and is usually more then enough.