Precepts in Buddhism and commandments in Judaism and Christianity are important jewels that we need to study and practice. They provide guidelines that can help us transform our suffering. Looking deeply at these precepts and commandments, we can learn the art of living in beauty. The Five Wonderful Precepts of Buddhism – reverence for life, generosity, responsible sexual behavior, speaking and listening deeply, and ingesting only wholesome substances – can contribute greatly to the happiness of the family and society. I have recently rephrased them to address the problems of our times:
- Aware of the suffering caused by the destruction of life, I vow to cultivate compassion and learn ways to protect the lives of people, animals, plants, and minerals. I am determined not to kill, and not to condone any act of killing in this world, in my thinking, and in my life.
Note: Traditionally, the five Buddhist precepts, often referred to as Pratimoksha vows, are presented as abstaining from killing, stealing, sexual misconduct, lying, and consuming intoxicants. Note how Thich Nhat Hanh has presented the precepts in positive vernacular.
Thich Nhat Hanh
from Living Buddha, Living Christ
To be continued . . .