To see the secular as a hindrance to practice is to only know that in the secular nothing is sacred; it is not yet realizing that in sacredness, nothing is secular. Realize the Precepts as your own body and mind and realize sacredness.

— John Daido Loori, Roshi

In the MRO, taking the Buddhist Precepts is a significant and serious aspect of training. The Precepts are unique among religious ethical teachings in that they’re based on the experience of no-self. In essence, they define how an enlightened being functions in the world, relates to others and this planet, and makes moral and ethical decisions in everyday life. They are the basis of the rules and guidelines for all residents and visitors to the MRO’s training centers.

Receiving the Precepts is a serious commitment open only to formal students. A minimum of two years of formal training and participation in a series of Precepts retreats are required. Upon completing these requirements, a student may petition to receive the Precepts, and if accepted, enter a weeklong intensive training retreat with their teacher to study the significance of this commitment. This week of training culminates in a public ceremony of Jukai, receiving the Precepts.

The Sixteen Bodhisattva Precepts

The Three Treasures

I take refuge in the Buddha
I take refuge in the Dharma
I take refuge in the Sangha

The Three Pure Precepts

Not Creating Evil
Practicing Good
Actualizing Good For Others

The Ten Grave Precepts

Affirm life; Do not kill
Be giving; Do not steal
Honor the body; Do not misuse sexuality
Manifest truth; Do not lie
Proceed clearly; Do not cloud the mind
See the perfection; Do not speak of others errors and faults
Realize self and other as one; Do not elevate the self and blame others
Give generously; Do not be withholding
Actualize harmony; Do not be angry
Experience the intimacy of things; Do not defile the Three Treasures