This album contains the ceremony and commentary of the Ritual for Taking the Eight Mahayana Precepts compiled by Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
The eight Mahayana precepts are special one-day vows based on the Mahayana motivation of bodhichitta. Observing precepts for even such a short time has tremendous benefits as we accumulate a great amount of merit in a short time, we are protected from harm and our mind becomes peaceful as it gains control over our bad habits.
The eight Mahayana precepts are best taken for the first time from someone qualified to pass on the lineage of the practice. For example, Lama Zopa Rinpoche has given certain FPMT teachers permission to grant the eight Mahayana precepts. However, since this person becomes one’s guru, if you are not ready (or confident) to make that commitment, it is permissible to take the precepts in front of an image or statue of Guru Shakyamuni Buddha. This is also the case when a qualified person is not available to pass on the lineage. However, when the opportunity arises, it would be best to receive the actual lineage. The eight Mahayana precepts can also be taken before you have officially taken refuge.