What are the basic rules of Buddhism?

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by Penguin:

What are the minimum things you have to follow to be considered a Buddhist?

Answer by stingray
Live your life with integrity and with out the need for material things

3 Comments

  1. The five precepts:
    Abstain from taking life
    Abstain from taking what is not given
    Abstain from sexual misconduct
    Abstain from false speech
    Abstain from taking intoxicants

  2. Good evening Penguin
    The core teaching of Buddhism is expressed in The Four Noble Truths:
    1. Life means “dukkha” (the term is actually “dukkha” which some translate as “suffering” but does not fully explain the term which is more subtle see http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/8foldpath.htm for an explanation of “dukkha”)
    2. The origin of “dukkha” is attachment.
    3. The cessation of “dukkha” is attainable.
    4. The path to the cessation of “dukkha” exists
    That the cause of dukkha is attachment (sometimes referred to as “ignorance” or “desire”); that it is possible to end dukkha; that the end to dukkha is attained by self-improvement by following The Eightfold Path :
    1. Right View
    2. Right Intention
    3. Right Speech
    4. Right Action
    5. Right Livelihood
    6. Right Effort
    7. Right Mindfulness
    8. Right Concentration
    The five precepts for lay people:
    1. Abstain from killing
    2. Abstain from taking what is not freely given
    3. Abstain from sensual (some say sexual) misconduct
    4. Abstain from false speech
    5. Abstain from intoxicants
    May all be at peace.
    John

  3. John gave you a great response.
    However, I’d like to add that belief in the Four Noble Truths, Eightfold Path and Five Precepts does not make anyone a Buddhist.
    To be a Buddhist, a person actually has to do something. And the Buddha was very clear about what needs to be done:
    1. Lead an ethical life. Much of the Eightfold Path, and all of the Five Precepts, describe how to live in an ethical manner. Buddhists strive to live in accordance with these teachings.
    2. Practice meditation. The last two steps of the Eightfold Path describe the activity of meditation. There are many different techniques that implement these steps, but without formal, consistent meditation, the benefit of the Buddha’s teaching will be slight.
    These are the two minimum things that a person needs to do to be considered a Buddhist. Of course, most of us fall short, at least some of the time. But if we don’t make a serious commitment to living and practicing in this way, then the wisdom and compassion described by the Buddha will fail to manifest in our lives.
    Best wishes on your path!

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