the five precepts

I was raised Catholic, but have a real affinity for Eastern religious traditions. My nature tends towards the traditions of yoga and Buddhism. I can’t say for sure that any wisdom tradition is the true path, but I know what feels right for me. You may see me discuss or mention the various traditions and philosophies that I feel closest to, as time goes by and this blog takes shape. But I feel that starting out, it is important for me to mention the five basic Buddhist precepts that I try to live by. These are certainly not commandments in the Christian sense, but rather they are guideposts that I try to follow. And we shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves if we fall short sometimes.

1. I undertake the precept to refrain from killing living creatures and to practice compassionate action.

2. I undertake the precept to refrain from taking that which is not given and to practice generosity.

3. I undertake the precept to refrain from using sexual energies unwisely or uncaringly and to practice responsibility in all my relationships.

4. I undertake the precept to refrain from harmful speech and to practice kind speech.

5. I undertake the precept to refrain from the misuse of alcohol and drugs and to practice caring for my body and my mind.

Again, these are just guidelines, something to strive towards. I know I’m not perfect, but trying to put these basic precepts into action each day makes me a better person, I think. But I do like the occasional beer once and awhile, too!

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