Thursday, August 27, 2009

Bodhisattva Precepts

Having developed the aspiration for enlightenment
Constantly enhance it through concerted effort.
To remember it in this and also in other lives,
Keep the precepts properly as explained.
 Without the vow of the engaged intention,
Perfect aspiration will not grow.
Make effort definitely to take it,
Since you want the wish for enlightenment to grow.

The bodhisattva vow should be repeated daily. This is usually done by reciting the verses from Shantideva's Engaging in the Bodhisattva Deeds (Bodhicharya avatara). Along with reciting the vow every day, one should also keep the bodhisattva precepts. There are two different traditions on what these traditions are: the  tradition of vast activity, which comes through Asanga, and the tradition of profound meaining, which comes through Shantideva.  The two sets of vows are explained on the linked pages. It's beyond me to give a detailed explanation of them.

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