Very well put together Enida
I view it from my perspective which is joining a monastery, does not take one out of the world and leaving a monastery does not require a passport to join the world .However one has focused in different ways, and issues have changed whilst there. If life is difficult to live after a spell in a monastery then maybe the relevance must be looked at.
For the last year I have been involved in training and practice both different and surprisingly similar to what we were involved with.
My youngest son who at 18 wanted me to teach him serious boxing,we joined a small clb and also did alot of training at home he would skip and practice sparing with me for speed and reflexes, he would do punching a bag for power,many times we were out on the street in the rain practice practice practice,he did well and entered some competitions, We were practising things that were too quick to think about it was reflexes that reacted too fast to rationalize or consider, he ran out of local opponents so he was invited to represent Devon which is our neighbouring county and box at HMS Drake against the Royal Marines. We went up thee to Plymouth,I was very aware of the possibility of emotions and anxiety boiling over and dissipating energy and allowing fear to run wild,so we were both quiet on the journey up, getting through security and into the changing room which was a hanger,my son is so small and looks young so he received funny derogatory looks and quips. Here we were off the street out of our depth facing the marines who train intensly for thes competitions,I was concerned I hoped my son was OK inside and not scared/We got the 20 minute call and he changed into his boxing kit not a word was said,when he had his Devon county vest and shorts on he danced round doing his movements that he did every night on or street,I could feel now he was cool,still and confident I knew he would be OK and win.
So he is marched in to the main hall full of dignitaries and marines The audience were looking in surprise as a young boy was walking in,He won the bout and the funny looks changed to respect as everyone stood up when he walked back, The whole process showed me we had depth in training together,and one really boxes oneself as much as anyone else one has to deal with powerful thoughts and feelings of fear and not knowing repressing them does not work one has to live with it all, one has to go beyond limitation.
So for me life has thrown so much at me that training and practice is always here there seems a right way to live through life's difficulties and there is nothing more relevant than life and being a part of the world. I think Monasteries if they teach that the divine is somewhere else they have no relevance at all.
My sons story continued to being champion of all six western counties,and we went up to London for the National final where he was three away from winning I was sitting next to and became friends with olympic trainers with huge gyms who without question would have the greatest respect for our pavement gym