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March 7 @ 5:30 am - 6:30 am
These lay precepts/vows can be taken at any time but on the Day of Miracles (one of the four Holy Days), they are especially meritorious.
The Eight Mahayana Precepts are a set of vows that are taken for 24 hours, from first light before dawn to sunrise of the following day. The only prerequisite is that the first time one takes precepts it should be from a qualified teacher who has received the oral transmission of the practice (Ven Thubten Chokyi).
The eight precepts are:
- Not to kill, even insects.
- Not to steal (Not to take what is not offered).
- Not to engage in sexual contact.
- Not to lie.
- Not use intoxicants: alcohol, tobacco and drugs (except for medicinal purposes).
- Not to eat at wrong times.*
- Not to sit on high, expensive beds or seats with pride. Avoid sitting on animal skins.
- Not to wear jewellery, perfume, or makeup; and not to sing, dance, or play music with attachment.
*It is alright to eat a light breakfast before or after the precepts. Avoid eating black foods: meat, eggs, onions, garlic, and radishes. The main meal of the day is to be finished by midday. After that one can take light drinks, but not undiluted whole milk or fruit juice with pulp, nor any food until sunrise of the following day.
The benefits of keeping the precepts of ordination (dom pa) for a day, when taken with the will of enlightenment, Bodhicitta, are infinite.
Contact SPC@hayagriva.org.au with any queries.