The Five Buddhist Precepts.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Mar 15, 2009
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buddhist precepts

These are not commandments in the Judeo-Christian sense, they have nothing to do with morality but rather with mindfulness; they’re intended to help keep you in the present moment, and avoid the unnecessary creation of karma. We would take some version of these each morning during Dathun at Karme Choling.

1) refrain from killing
(Do not give rise to the view of extinction.)

2) refrain from stealing
(do not take what is not offered freely, including articles and photos that elephant journal has put time and money into unless you excerpting, give credit and link, in which case we love it.)

3) refrain from lying
(do not exaggerate your level of ordination or knowlege.)

4) refrain from sexual misconduct
(don’t be a jerk)

5) refrain from the use of intoxicants
(do not use any substance in a way that clouds judgement.)


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


3 Responses to “The Five Buddhist Precepts.”

  1. elph says:

    I like the parentheticals!

  2. Greg says:

    Not sure how they differ from Christian precepts. Both work in the same manner.

    As a result of moralizing, overly judgmental jerks Christianity becomes misrepresented and misunderstood.

    Jesus, for example, paralleled Buddhism in the Beatitudes. He understood, as well as does any Christian who has really studied the faith, that we are "sinners" (in Buddhist terms, we are ignorant) and we will not live up to the "law" but rather these axioms provide a path, a set of guidelines, that will aid our salvation (enlightenment) if we are able to follow them.

    Sin and ignorance are parallel concepts in that they are factors that decrease awareness. They decrease our ability to move toward an enlightened state wherein we can see more clearly the true nature of things. Too much is made of differences, too little recognition is given to similarities.

  3. […] and only with respect to a few issues are clear-cut divisions really made. Both traditions use five fundamental precepts as the guiding principles for living a life in accord with the Buddha’s teachings, which are: to […]