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On this auspicious day of the full moon of Sakadawa, Geshe Tenley has kindly offered to give the 24-hour eight Mahayana precept vows. Normally the ceremony would take place in the gompa beginning before dawn, where extensive offerings would have been set-up. But due to the pandemic, Geshela will confer the vows via Zoom. If you are able to make offerings (even one candle, or one water bowl, or a flower) on your altar at home before the ceremony begins, then please do that.
Lama Zopa Rinpoche, Kurukulla Center’s Spiritual Director, recommends taking the 24-hour eight Mahayana precept vows on days on which the karmic effects of positive actions are multiplied, such as Buddha days, full moon, new moon, and eclipses.
The eight Mahayana precepts are taken from early morning until sunrise the next day.
The precepts are:
1. To not kill any sentient being, even an insect.
2. To not steal, that is, to not take what has not been given.
3. To not engage in sexual activity.
4. To not tell lies.
5. To not take intoxicants, including alcohol, drugs, and tobacco.
6. To not eat food at the wrong time, that is, after noon.
7. To not sit on large and high seats and beds.
8. To not wear perfume, garlands, and ornaments, and to not sing, dance, and so forth.
The Sakadawa full moon is one of four “Buddha days” in the annual calendar. On these days the karmic effect of any actionis vastly multiplied. Therefore, taking the eight Mahayana precepts on the Sakadawa full moon is one of the very best practices you can do to benefit yourself, others and to bring peace and healing into the world.
The text you will need is The Direct and Unmistaken Method: The Practice and Benefits of the Eight Mahayana Precepts.
If you are unsure about taking the 24-hour eight Mahayana precept vows and would like more information you can send a message to email@example.com.