Special Topics

​Would Upholding Precepts Cause Any Inconvenience in One’s Daily Life?


Some people would undergo great changes in their physical and mental behaviors after they learn Dharma and take the Buddhist precepts. For example, they no longer drink alcohol; they become vegetarians; and they don't like shopping anymore. They seem to be completely transformed that their family and friends may find it strange and uncomfortable. In other instances, precepts-receivers, after returning home from the precepts ceremony, may feel unacquainted with themselves, awkward around their family and environment, and occupied with all kinds of defiled afflictions. In fact, this is a learning process. It takes time to experience and adjust daily life gradually after receiving precepts.
 
Respect Social Norms
 
After receiving precepts, one can't use precepts to judge others and shall not require family or expect the society to be a monastery. On the contrary, one should become grateful toward his or her family who provides opportunities to learn Buddhism. Although lay practitioners take refuges in the Three Jewels and uphold the five precepts or even the Bodhisattva precepts, they still live in human society where family is still the basis. Therefore, those who have received precepts should respect family ethics and social norms as well. Buddhism does not prohibit marital life or leisure activities, nor does it oppose business socializing. The function of precepts is to remind practitioners to reduce desires that would bring more afflictions to them. Life should be as simple as possible and not extravagant. One should not visit red-light district. The point of departure of the precepts is to protect physical safety, mental tranquility and family happiness.
 
Share the Benefits from Upholding Precepts
 
By upholding the precepts, one can take the time to realize and understand the meaning of each precept and also to experience the transformations in one's body, mind and life. In the course of studying Dharma and upholding precepts, one becomes a better person. Family and friends who experience the benefits of one's practice would naturally like to try and find out more about Dharma, or even join to learn together. Hence, upholding precepts doesn't cause any inconveniences in one's daily life and yet leads to a better one.
 
 

Resource:

50 Questions about Receiving Buddhist Precepts (受戒50問), Dharma Drum Publishing Corp.
 

Extended Reading: