The Five Precepts

We ask everyone participating in our retreats to make a commitment to follow the Five Ethical Precepts, a foundation for our practice. The precepts create the community of harmony and
safety necessary for our work of turning inward. The self-restraint we show by following the Precepts is essential to settle the mind.  Through this we develop confidence in our worth and ability to do the practice. Following the Precepts bestows a sense of happiness with our own goodness.

The Five Precepts are:

  • I undertake the training of refraining from taking
    the life of any living being.
  • I undertake the training of refraining from taking
    what has not been given.
  •  I undertake the training of refraining from any
    form of intentional sexual activity.*
  • I undertake the training of refraining from false
    and harmful speech.
  • I undertake the training of refraining from
    intoxicating drink and drugs that lead to
    heedlessness.

* A more general form of this precept is “I undertake the training to refrain from sexual misconduct,” but at retreat we commit to the version stated above.