5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Training of Sila, the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).

5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jan 02, 2009 9:38 am

Greetings everyone,

Generally speaking, lay Buddhists follow the 5 precepts...

Source: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dham ... asila.html
1. Panatipata veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from destroying living creatures.

2. Adinnadana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from taking that which is not given.

3. Kamesu micchacara veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from sexual misconduct.

4. Musavada veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from incorrect speech.

5. Suramerayamajja pamadatthana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from intoxicating drinks and drugs which lead to carelessness.


.... and then there's The Eight Precepts which are based on the Five Precepts, with the third precept extended to prohibit all sexual activity and an additional three precepts that are especially supportive to meditation practice.

Source: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/ptf/dham ... asila.html
1. Panatipata veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from destroying living creatures.

2. Adinnadana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from taking that which is not given.

3. Abrahmacariya veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from sexual activity.

4. Musavada veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from incorrect speech.

5. Suramerayamajja pamadatthana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from intoxicating drinks and drugs which lead to carelessness.

6. Vikalabhojana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from eating at the forbidden time (i.e., after noon).

7. Nacca-gita-vadita-visukkadassana mala-gandha-vilepana-dharana-mandana-vibhusanathana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from dancing, singing, music, going to see entertainments, wearing garlands, using perfumes, and beautifying the body with cosmetics.

8. Uccasayana-mahasayana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami
I undertake the precept to refrain from lying on a high or luxurious sleeping place.


I was wondering for our members here, under what circumstances do you 'upgrade' to the eight precepts? Uposatha observances? Meditation retreats? All the time?

What benefits do you feel come with going that extra step and committing to the eight precepts for a period of time?

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14724
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Fede » Fri Jan 02, 2009 10:41 am

If I may....

I recite the Five to myself, morning and evening.
I also occasionally surprise myself by thinking of them during the day. They seem to flash upon my "inward eye" and bring me back 'to Centre', which is pleasant.
As for the additional three, I do these at any time that there is a Buddhist festival, and on the rare occasions that I am on my own (and my partner is absent for any short period of time, on a conference for example, or on a long weekend awway to visit his son...)
It's a rare opportunity to practise discipline and engage in a mini-retreat all of my own.....

Thank you.
"Samsara: The human condition's heartbreaking inability to sustain contentment." Elizabeth Gilbert, 'Eat, Pray, Love'.

Simplify: 17 into 1 WILL go: Mindfulness!

Quieta movere magna merces videbatur. (Sallust, c.86-c.35 BC)
Translation: Just to stir things up seemed a good reward in itself. ;)

I am sooooo happy - How on earth could I be otherwise?! :D


http://www.armchairadvice.co.uk/relationships/forum/
User avatar
Fede
 
Posts: 1182
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:33 pm
Location: The Heart of this "Green & Pleasant Land"...

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 02, 2009 10:49 am

Hi retro,
I only directly follow the eight precepts on retreat as being a Chef with all that involves with shift work etc it is hard to keep to a particular day per week or to the actual observance days!
personally I find remembering the Eightfold Path more useful than remembering the precepts directly, although I am doing that at the same time!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
User avatar
Cittasanto
 
Posts: 5827
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:31 pm
Location: Ellan Vannin

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Ben » Fri Jan 02, 2009 11:49 am

During retreats (sitting or serving) I pick up the additional three precepts.
In day-to-day life I actually think it is more beneficial to observe the five precepts as strictly as possible rather than not do a great job of the eight. My experience is that the closer one observes the precepts the more receptive one is to the Dhamma and the more efficacious one's practice becomes.
Kind regards

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725


Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR
Buddhist Life Stories of Australia

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com
User avatar
Ben
Site Admin
 
Posts: 16223
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: Land of the sleeping gods

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby jcsuperstar » Fri Jan 02, 2009 1:33 pm

i only do the 8(or 10) when living at the Wat
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
User avatar
jcsuperstar
 
Posts: 1915
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 5:15 am
Location: alaska

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Jan 02, 2009 11:04 pm

Greetings,

My experience here is similar to most of yours.

I do the first five as best I can, but I'm also quite mindful of #7 throughout daily life too. I love music and thanks to my practice I can now enjoy it without being quite so obsessive about it. It also accords with my general disinterest in fashion, so that's nice. ;)

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14724
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby zamis » Sat Jan 03, 2009 3:54 pm

Losing fear of following no meal after 12 has added a great deal of confidence. What I thought would be a very poor dietary decision turned out to be a great one, so I follow the eight on a more or less regular basis. I've been following 7 since life circumstances allow for it -
"You're almost at the end of your lease in this burning house and yet you continue latching onto it as your self. It tricks you into feeling fear and love, and when you fall for it, what path will you practice? " Upasika Kee Nanayon

http://www.bhikkhuni.net
zamis
 
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 12:18 pm
Location: Tennessee

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Jason » Sun Jan 04, 2009 2:13 am

Retro,

I usually only observe the eight precepts when I am staying at a Buddhist temple for an extended period of time, such as for meditation retreats, etc. Other than that, I find the five precepts to be sufficient. The main reason is that, to me, the extra precepts are simply there to foster a contemplative atmosphere and are designed to be supportive to meditation practice, but they tend to get in the way of my day-to-day life. For example, working a physically demanding full time job with a short lunch break makes the precept to refrain from "eating at the forbidden time" rather impractical. Besides that, as a lay-follower, I also enjoy things like listening to music, reading just for pleasure, watching movies, etc. Plus, I think that Ben makes a good point about it being better to observe the five precepts really well rather than observing the eight poorly.

Jason
"Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya" (AN 7.58).

leaves in the hand (Buddhist-related blog)
leaves in the forest (non-Buddhist related blog)
User avatar
Jason
 
Posts: 469
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:09 am
Location: Earth

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Dhammakid » Mon Jan 05, 2009 1:44 am

Hello everyone,
My experience is just about the same. Actually, I have never followed the Eight Precepts fully. Even on the couple of meditation retreats I've attended, we have eaten after noon. Part of this is because I've never even been to a Buddhist temple before, so I've never had a practical reason to follow the Eight Precepts other than if I was feeling up to it on my own. However, I have made the decision in the past to follow Eight Precepts on Uposatha observance days, I just haven't gotten around to doing it yet. Maybe for the one coming up...

I think it would be quite nice to regularly follow Eight Precepts if life circumstances allowed it. But I'm pretty sure I'm going to become a monk, so I'll have plenty of rules to follow then. Maybe I should focus on being the best lay person I can be for now :D

Namaste,
Dhammakid
User avatar
Dhammakid
 
Posts: 366
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:09 am
Location: Georgia, USA

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby fig tree » Sun Jan 11, 2009 7:36 am

retrofuturist wrote:I was wondering for our members here, under what circumstances do you 'upgrade' to the eight precepts?

For a short while I did this on uposatha days, with a couple of amendments. I would stop eating not at noon, but at 1:00, the usual end of my lunch hour. (Nowadays, on workdays I have to attend a meeting that ends around noon, which would make stopping at noon more difficult, although I could. And incidentally, if you want to get technical about it, I thought I had read that it was customary for monks and nuns at least to use the local astronomical noon, when the sun is highest in the sky? This was mentioned in the context of their deciding when to eat while taking plane flights, especially traveling to the east. During daylight savings time that would be an hour later, but one also has to adjust for where you are in the time zone. In my case, since the 105th west meridian literally passes through the next block over, haha, I guess barely any adjustment is necessary. Or am I just imagining all this? ;) ) I also have been sleeping until after dawn, and I would do that as usual in the early morning of the uposatha day, and get off my "high and luxurious" bed just for that night.

The combination of leaving out dinner and entertainments was interesting. Driving to work without listening to the radio or taking the bus makes for an interesting kind of quiet. When I returned home, I noticed I could clean my teeth right away, and then have hours for housecleaning, reading dhamma, or meditating.

I guess part of why I stopped is that the usefulness of sleeping low to the ground wasn't so evident to me, and also I would get somewhat hungry.

It seems to be a good thing in general to keep dinner (the evening meal) small, at least. I think perhaps having more days where I do without radio, TV, and internet could be useful. So I'm considering doing that more regularly without necessarily bringing precepts into the picture per se.

Fig Tree
User avatar
fig tree
 
Posts: 175
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:25 am

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby pererin » Sun Jan 11, 2009 11:53 am

When I came to Buddhist practice I found that the Five had already been a part of my life, though I have to be honest and say that I am trying to work out the practical implications of the first precept. The decision to observe the Eight as a way of life would in effect be making choices for my partner too, and that is something to be considered.
pererin
 

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Will » Sun Jan 11, 2009 3:36 pm

pererin wrote:When I came to Buddhist practice I found that the Five had already been a part of my life, though I have to be honest and say that I am trying to work out the practical implications of the first precept. The decision to observe the Eight as a way of life would in effect be making choices for my partner too, and that is something to be considered.



The vow to practice the Eight need not be for life, they can be taken, for example, at the four points of the lunar cycle each month, ie just for 4 days a month. Or they can be taken a day here or there, whenever you like.
This noble eightfold path is the ancient path traveled by all the Buddhas of eons past. Nagara Sutta
User avatar
Will
 
Posts: 384
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby pererin » Sun Jan 11, 2009 3:53 pm

That is very helpful, Will - thank you. What are the four points of the lunar cycle?
pererin
 

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Will » Sun Jan 11, 2009 3:58 pm

pererin wrote:That is very helpful, Will - thank you. What are the four points of the lunar cycle?


New Moon, 1st quarter, Full Moon, 3rd quarter.
This noble eightfold path is the ancient path traveled by all the Buddhas of eons past. Nagara Sutta
User avatar
Will
 
Posts: 384
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby pererin » Sun Jan 11, 2009 4:06 pm

:oops:

Don't worry about me - I'm just having another senior moment day ...

:rofl:
pererin
 

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Dhammakid » Sun Jan 11, 2009 5:03 pm

Hello Pererin,
What are the practical implications of the First Precept you are having trouble with?

:namaste:
Dhammakid
User avatar
Dhammakid
 
Posts: 366
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:09 am
Location: Georgia, USA

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Jan 12, 2009 8:10 pm

I follow the five precepts and attempt to do the 8 on most days. I don't specifically make a vow or chant the precepts, but just attempt to do as many of the 8 daily. For me, not eating beyond noon is easy since I work from home. Not wearing cosmetics is also easy, as is sleeping on a low bed and not listening to music and shows. I guess as I got old, I mostly lost interest in Top 40 music, so it was easy more so than any 'achievement.

I feel better and more relaxed when the 8 are followed. It could be from greater mindfulness or it could be that there is no feeling of guilt when I don't break any of the 8 precepts. Time and meditation will tell. :yingyang: :meditate:
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8152
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby bodom » Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:55 pm

As for me i am waiting until after football season to start observing the Uposatha and 8 precepts. Its the playoffs and it just so happens that the Uposatha days have been falling on saturdays and sundays when its game day. Football is one attachment im not ready to let go of yet lol. Other than that 5 precepts everyday in so far as i am able.

:namaste:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
User avatar
bodom
 
Posts: 4632
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:18 pm
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby pererin » Sat Jan 17, 2009 1:11 am

bodom_bad_boy wrote:As for me i am waiting until after football season to start observing the Uposatha and 8 precepts .... Football is one attachment im not ready to let go of yet


Now that's just funny ...

:rofl:
pererin
 

Re: 5 Precepts vs 8 Precepts

Postby Dhammakid » Sat Jan 17, 2009 6:49 am

Hahaha, I agree! I do love me some football though :lol:

I should rededicate myself to following the 8 during the observance days. I feel I will greatly benefit from it.

:namaste:
Dhammakid
User avatar
Dhammakid
 
Posts: 366
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:09 am
Location: Georgia, USA


Return to Ethical Conduct

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 3 guests