Some questions about the 8 precepts

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

Some questions about the 8 precepts

Postby Guy » Wed Jul 08, 2009 6:36 am

Hello everyone,

I have more questions, as usual...

ATTHAGA SILA (The Eight Precepts)

1) PÀNÀTIPÀTÀ - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from harming or taking life.

2) ADINNÀDÀNÀ - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from taking what is not given.

3) ABRAHMACARIYÀ - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from any from sexual contact.

4) MUSÀVÀDÀ - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from false speech.

5) SURA - MERAYA – MAJJA - PAMÀDATTHANA - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from the use of intoxicants, i.e. drugs and alcohol.

6) VIKÀLA - BHOJANÀ - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from eating after the mid-day meal.

7) NACCA - GITA - VÀDITA - VISUKADASSANÀ - MÀLAGANDHA - VILEPANA - DHÀRANA - MANDANA - VIBHUSANATTHÀNÀ - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from dancing, singing, music and watching entertainments, and from using enticing beauty aids, i.e. perfume, etc.

8) UCCASAYANA – MAHASAYANA - VERAMANI SIKKHAPADAM SAMADIYAMI
I undertake to abstain from indulging in high and luxurious seats and beds.


http://www.buddhanet.net/imol/retreat/appendix01.htm

The first 5 precepts I understand.

As for the 6th precept - What exactly constitutes food, where do we draw the line? I assume water is okay but what about soup, milk, soy milk, fruit juice or tea?

The 7th precept I understand to mean nothing to distract you from your practice (such as TV, films, games, etc.), is this correct? As for the beauty aids and perfume - no problem.

Does the 8th precept mean I should sleep on the carpet, or is a thin foam mattress okay? Also are things like pillows and doonas okay or not?

Sorry if any of my questions are dumb or have already been answered before, it's just that last time I tried to practice the 8 precepts I wasn't exactly sure what was and wasn't allowed.

Thanks,

Guy
Four types of letting go:

1) Giving; expecting nothing back in return
2) Throwing things away
3) Contentment; wanting to be here, not wanting to be anywhere else
4) "Teflon Mind"; having a mind which doesn't accumulate things

- Ajahn Brahm
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Re: Some questions about the 8 precepts

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Jul 08, 2009 6:44 am

Greetings Guy,

As for the 6th precept - What exactly constitutes food, where do we draw the line? I assume water is okay but what about soup, milk, soy milk, fruit juice or tea?


As I understand it... soup is no, milk is no, soy milk is no, fruit juice is OK only if strained, tea is fine so long as there's no milk.

The 7th precept I understand to mean nothing to distract you from your practice (such as TV, films, games, etc.), is this correct? As for the beauty aids and perfume - no problem.


Yes... trying to avoid sensual pleasures/distractions.

Does the 8th precept mean I should sleep on the carpet, or is a thin foam mattress okay? Also are things like pillows and doonas okay or not?


Any of those should be OK.

As usual, happy to be corrected...

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)
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Re: Some questions about the 8 precepts

Postby Guy » Wed Jul 08, 2009 6:48 am

Hello Retro,

Thanks for the quick reply, you have cleared things up for me.

Thank you,

Guy
Four types of letting go:

1) Giving; expecting nothing back in return
2) Throwing things away
3) Contentment; wanting to be here, not wanting to be anywhere else
4) "Teflon Mind"; having a mind which doesn't accumulate things

- Ajahn Brahm
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Guy
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:05 am
Location: Perth, Western Australia

Re: Some questions about the 8 precepts

Postby mikenz66 » Wed Jul 08, 2009 7:20 am

retrofuturist wrote:
As for the 6th precept - What exactly constitutes food, where do we draw the line? I assume water is okay but what about soup, milk, soy milk, fruit juice or tea?

As I understand it... soup is no, milk is no, soy milk is no, fruit juice is OK only if strained, tea is fine so long as there's no milk.

Depends on the Wat/Centre.

What Retro says would be the safest bet, but some monastics I've done retreats with think milk products are OK. Some chocolate (especially dark). Some gummie bears... :) Then there's honey in hot water, ...

Mike
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Re: Some questions about the 8 precepts

Postby Guy » Wed Jul 08, 2009 7:44 am

Hi Mike,

Thanks, I think I will err on the side of caution. I am not taking the 8 precepts "officially" with a monk or on a retreat I have just decided to try to keep them one day per week for next three months to put a bit of oompf into my meditation practice.

With Metta,

Guy
Four types of letting go:

1) Giving; expecting nothing back in return
2) Throwing things away
3) Contentment; wanting to be here, not wanting to be anywhere else
4) "Teflon Mind"; having a mind which doesn't accumulate things

- Ajahn Brahm
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Guy
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:05 am
Location: Perth, Western Australia

Re: Some questions about the 8 precepts

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Jul 08, 2009 9:00 am

Greetings,

mikenz66 wrote:What Retro says would be the safest bet, but some monastics I've done retreats with think milk products are OK. Some chocolate (especially dark). Some gummie bears... :) Then there's honey in hot water, ...


Bah... that's soft :tongue:

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
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