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Creating my Own Refuge Ceremony

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Comments

  • DhammikaDhammika Veteran

    PS: Good for home use!

  • HozanHozan Veteran

    Hi all,
    My home refuge ceremony is on April 08th. I am preparing for it. Would be grateful for links to the basic vows that i could use. Thank you.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Do you want to recite them in English or Pali...?

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited March 25

    I created this for myself way back when...
    Taking Refuge:

    Buddham Saranam Gachami
    Dhammam Saranam Gachami
    Sangham Saranam Gachami

    Dutyam-pi Buddham Saranam Gachami
    Dutyam-pi Dhammam Saranam Gachami
    Dutyam-pi Sangham Saranam Gachami

    Tatyam-pi Buddham Saranam Gachami
    Tatyam-pi Dhammam Saranam Gachami
    Tatyam-pi Sangham Saranam Gachami

    The Five Precepts:

    I vow to train myself to:
    Not hurt any being – to do no Harm;
    Not to take anything, which is not freely or willingly given;
    Speak wholesomely and pleasantly
    Not to indulge in improper sexual pleasures;
    Not to consume intoxicating substances which confuse the mind and cloud the judgement.

    ˜˜˜˜˜˜˜˜˜˜˜
    There are these five facts that I should reflect on often, whether a woman or a man, lay or ordained. Which five?

    I am subject to ageing, have not gone beyond ageing.
    I am subject to illness, have not gone beyond illness.
    I am subject to death, have not gone beyond death.
    I will grow different, separate from all that is dear and appealing to me.
    I am the owner of my Karma, heir to my Karma, born of my Karma, related to my Karma. Whatever I do, for good or for evil, to that will I fall heir.

    I Accept that:

    All things are impermanent and there is no essential substance or concept that is NOT impermanent.

    All emotions bring pain and suffering, and there is NO emotion that is ever purely pleasurable.

    All phenomena are illusory and empty.

    Enlightenment is beyond concepts: It is not a blissful ‘heaven’ but instead a Release from delusion.

    HozankarastiDhammika
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    @federica thank you so much for sharing! Very much appreciated. I would be delighted to use that in my ceremony. I am most grateful to you. :)

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Please don't thank me; think nothing of it, it's for everyone.

    Thank the Buddha, he started it.... ;)

    Hozanlobsterdhammachickkarasti
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Seriously minded self initiation is done as in the presence of the Buddha and the community of the enlightened.

    Refuge is a blessing

    karastiHozan
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran

    @lobster indeed it is. There are times I recall that I carry Refuge with me always that it gives me goose bumps. It is a gift and blessing indeed.

    lobster
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    Thank you all for the advice and contributions here. Very much appreciated. As part of my run up to my refuge ceremony next Saturday 08th, I will be taking a break from online activity, as I prepare my motivation and dedication and fine tune my plans for the ceremony itself. Talk to you all again afterwards. :)

    federicadhammachicklobster
  • JundoJundo New
    edited April 4

    @lobster said:
    Being nothing but trouble I was refused refuge. O.o
    On the same day I performed a personal commitment/refuge ceremony.
    I have a dharma name. A mantra. A pledge. A connection to Maitreya.

    As your commitment is to zen, I suggest you get the council of Jundo Cohen https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treeleaf_Zendo
    You can take refuge, become a zen preist, practice together etc.

    Jundo is a member here, has an online zendo and Treeleaf zen forum and is a teacher on zen forum International. You can speak with him directly through one of the google services - hangouts I think ...
    http://www.zenforuminternational.org or send a private message ...

    Hi Lobster, This is Jundo from Treeleaf. Thank you for the kind word. Just one point of clarification. I really only might Ordain as Priest a small number of people that I have known and interacted with for several years, and then we first start talking about Ordination. We do, however, offer "Jukai" (Undertaking the Precepts) each year to everybody.

    Just want to clarify that, as I sometimes get contacted by folks seeking Ordination, and I can't help them.

    Gassho, Jundo

    lobsterHozan
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    Follically I am ready for my refuge ceremony on Saturday....

    dhammachick
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    You have been balded?

    Hozan
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    That's a little....'extreme'.... but whatever you feel is right for you, I guess.... :)

    Hozan
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    Not very extreme for me as I spent all my 20's with a zero blade crew cut and have it every summer too. So I have "scalped" hair very often anyway :)

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Oh cool.... TbH, I just didn't want you to 'over-do' this and gain the impression that Taking Refuge is a serious, sombre affair, where you have to supposedly go to a quasi-monk-like existence (albeit temporarily) to achieve the Refuge objective....

    But if it's something you do as a general thing, It's an academic concern....

    Hozan
  • TiggerTigger Toronto, Canada Veteran
    edited April 5

    I am very happy for you @Hozan!!! <3

    What have you prepared? How are you doing this? I'm just curious because this is something I really want to do in the near future. Right now I'm working on my discipline towards the precepts. I don't beat myself up for breaking them from time to time but I don't feel comfortable taking refuge when I know in my heart I am not there yet.

    Consistent Broken Precepts
    I eat meat - Can I take refuge and say I won't hurt anything but turn around and eat chicken? Especially since I KNOW how these poor animals are treated in some situations

    I have some drinks from time to time. This is something I'm really working on and already decreased it by 60% which is success for me....but still not there.

  • HozanHozan Veteran

    @federica i hear you and appreciate your advice. Wise words indeed. I actually feel very light and happy in the lead up to my refuge ceremony and I agree entirely with you. Taking things too "seriously" is the wrong approach for sure. I aim to be committed to my practise and vows without taking myself too seriously, if that makes any sense

  • HozanHozan Veteran

    @Tigger i will post the ceremony details up here after the weekend. @federica was very kind to share hers with me on this thread and I have added a few parts myself including the Heart Sutra. I will share all afterwards. Thank you @Tigger. In a way ive been preparing 20 years for this

    lobster
  • TiggerTigger Toronto, Canada Veteran

    Great, I look forward to it =)

    Hozan
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Beginning today, call the Buddha your teacher. Never again take refuge in the mistaken ideas of other paths. And may you experience the compassion of your own Three Treasures. Good friends, I urge you all to take refuge in the Three Treasures of your own nature, wherein "Buddha" means enlightenment, "Dharma" means truth, and "Sangha" means purity...
    Ordinary people do not understand this. Day after day, they recite the precepts of the Triple Refuge. But when they say they take refuge in the Buddha, where is the Buddha? If they don't see the Buddha, they aren't taking refuge in anything. If they aren't taking refuge in anything, their words are false.
    Good friends, each of you should examine this for yourselves. Don't misdirect your attention. The sutras only say to take refuge in the buddha of yourselves. They don't say to take refuge in some other buddha. If you don't take refuge in your own nature, there's no other place of refuge.

    From The Platform Sutra, The Zen Teaching of Hui-Neng, translation and commentary by Red Pine.

    Hozan
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    @lobster said:
    Beginning today, call the Buddha your teacher. Never again take refuge in the mistaken ideas of other paths. And may you experience the compassion of your own Three Treasures. Good friends, I urge you all to take refuge in the Three Treasures of your own nature, wherein "Buddha" means enlightenment, "Dharma" means truth, and "Sangha" means purity...
    Ordinary people do not understand this. Day after day, they recite the precepts of the Triple Refuge. But when they say they take refuge in the Buddha, where is the Buddha? If they don't see the Buddha, they aren't taking refuge in anything. If they aren't taking refuge in anything, their words are false.
    Good friends, each of you should examine this for yourselves. Don't misdirect your attention. The sutras only say to take refuge in the buddha of yourselves. They don't say to take refuge in some other buddha. If you don't take refuge in your own nature, there's no other place of refuge.

    From The Platform Sutra, The Zen Teaching of Hui-Neng, translation and commentary by Red Pine.

    @lobster Thank You. So true. Very important for me to see this before tomorrow. Correct motivation is vital. Thank you as always for sharing @lobster . Very much appreciated.

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran

    @Tigger refuge and precepts are often done together but you can take refuge without doing the precepts. And remember precepts aren't rules, they are practicing guidelines that we work towards. I do refuge and precepts every morning (some days more precepts than others) and doing so keeps me on track of my goals to work towards them and improve my situation (and thus the situation of others) via the precepts. It doesn't mean I expect perfection. I know where I am and where I want to go and what I am able to do, so I do my best and see what I can improve on regularly. The precepts I did with my teacher actually don't include anything about alcohol. I don't abstain entirely, but I am cautious when I partake and limit myself to not experiencing an obvious change in mind state (changes happen whether we are aware or not, but I've found meditation and practice has made me more aware of those subtle changes, too).

    federicaHozanTigger
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Consistent Broken Precepts
    I eat meat - Can I take refuge and say I won't hurt anything but turn around and eat chicken? Especially since I KNOW how these poor animals are treated in some situations

    Isn't what @Hozan does or what @Jundo offers or what we attempt even for short intervals between chicken munching (lobster raises guilty chicken claw) the effort we aspire to? Eventually it unfolds into ease of direction and rest in The Path.

    Nobody not even the Buddha will walk for us .... but with us ... most certainly. Some here consider ethics/sila/precepts as one of their daily goals. A move into skilful being.

    It is a good plan.
    http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/9825/how-to-take-refuge-without-a-sangha

    “Develop what is skillful, monks. It is possible to develop what is skillful. If it were not possible to develop what is skillful, I would not say to you, ‘Develop what is skillful.’ But because it is possible to develop what is skillful, I say to you, ‘Develop what is skillful.’ If this development of what is skillful were conducive to harm and pain, I would not say to you, ‘Develop what is skillful.’ But because this development of what is skillful is conducive to benefit and pleasure, I say to you, ‘Develop what is skillful.'”
    —Kusala Sutta
    http://www.existentialbuddhist.com/tag/kusala/

  • TiggerTigger Toronto, Canada Veteran

    Thanks @karasti. I am not too familiar with taking refuge as I wanted to learn a little more about Buddhism before I did, that way I could truly appreciate the ceremony. I didn't know I could take refuge without the precepts, I thought that would have been a requirement so thanks for letting me know. I don't beat myself up anymore over my shortcomings because I think I'm a pretty decent.

  • TiggerTigger Toronto, Canada Veteran

    So @Hozan, how was it?

  • HozanHozan Veteran

    It went really well. Prepared all week for it. I had my altar, buddha, incence, candle, cherry blossom flowers. I had my ceremony hand written. Writing it slowly in the week leading up to Saturday allowed the meaning of the words to take hold and sink in. It was a great moment for me. I feel lighter. Now on with my life...day by day... breath by breath..... thank you all here for your advice and encouragement.......:) :) :) :)

    Tigger
  • TiggerTigger Toronto, Canada Veteran

    I'm very happy for you!

    Hozan
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    Thank you @Tigger . Much appreciated. I can post my handwritten ceremony up here if anyone would like to see it for reference. Thank you @federica for being so generous with your own which I worked from. :awesome:

    dhammachick
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    I'd love to see it! (It had better not be better than mine! :D )

    J/K... ;)

    HozanTigger
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    Don't worry @federica lol. Mine wouldnt even exist without yours! The vital parts of mine came from you and you were very kind and generous to share it.

  • HozanHozan Veteran

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  • HozanHozan Veteran

    I dont have a picture of the altar but some of these guys helped me out.....

  • HozanHozan Veteran

  • HozanHozan Veteran

  • TiggerTigger Toronto, Canada Veteran
    edited April 11

    Wow, that's awesome @Hozan. On a side note, I think we have the same blanket :lol: (the zebra striped one)

    So when you take refuge, you recite what you have written? What else goes into it?

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