Bodhisattvas are the enlightened beings who took vows to help all sentient beings to be free from all the sufferings and pain of this life. These Bodhisattvas follow some moral codes when they are on the path from normal practitioner to Bodhisattva. These set of moral codes are known as Bodhisattva Precepts. Bodhisattva Precepts are widely used in Mahayana Buddhism since the ultimate goal of Mahayana help all sentient beings free from the aspects of life. Buddhist monks in Mahayana tradition, also follows Bodhisattva codes along with other basic moral codes and these basic moral codes are used by every Buddhist practitioners in every kind of tradition.
Ten Bodhisattva Precepts
These Ten Bodhisattva Precepts are some of the moral codes that must be followed no matter what. If one cannot see the seed of Bodhisattva. Lord Buddha said:
“There are ten major Bodhisattva Precepts. If one receives the precepts but fail to recite them, one is not a Bodhisattva, nor is one a seed of Buddhahood. I, too, recite these precepts.
All Bodhisattva have read them in the past, will study in the future, and are studying them now. I have explained the main characteristics of the Bodhisattva precepts. You should study and observe them with all your heart.”
All bodhisattva have recited them and followed these precepts through hearts. May it be Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara, Bodhisattva Manjushri, Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha, Bodhisattva Samantabhadra and other great bodhisattvas, all of them have followed these moral codes. These ten Bodhisattva precepts are:
Vow Not to Kill
Buddhist Practitioners must not kill any living beings, must not encourage others to kill. One must not praise the cause of killings or rejoice on killing. One must not create any causes or reasons to kill any living creature intentionally or unintentionally.
Buddhist Disciples must be compassionate and always be ready to rescue and protect any living creatures in a problem.
Vow Not to Steal
This is the second precepts of Bodhisattva. One must not steal what is not theirs. One should not encourage others to steal or creates a cause, conditions and reasons for others to steals and do such heinous acts.
As a Buddhist disciple, one must show mercy and compassion and help people to earn the merits and happiness through good deeds.
Vow Not to Do Sexual Misconduct
As a Buddhist disciple, one mustn’t involve in any kind of Sexual misconducts with any humans, animal, deva or any kind of spirits. One must involve in such misconducts or provoke others to involve in such heinous acts.
Buddhist practitioners rescue all living beings from any kind of sexual misconducts. One must instruct others to the teachings of Dharma and helps them from involving any kinds of misconducts.
Vow Not to use False speech and Lying
Buddhist Practitioner must use any kind of false and bad speech, or encourage others to use such speeches. One must lie or involve in Karma of lying.
As a Buddhist disciple, one must encourage to use right speech, and right views as mentioned in Noble Eightfold paths.
Vow Not to Sell Intoxicants
The disciples of Buddha must involve in any kind of business that sells intoxicants or encourage others to such acts or business.
Buddhist Practitioner must try to help all sentient beings and help them to study Perfection of Wisdom.
Vow Not to Broadcasts the Fault of Assembly
Buddhist practitioner must not broadcast the misdeeds of other Buddhist members. One must not create the causes, reasons, or Karma that offenses other Buddhist members of the assembly.
As Buddhist disciple, one must help those who perform misdeeds and help them to learn the karma of realizing their mistakes.
Vow Not to Praise Oneself while Disparaging Others
One must not praise oneself and speak ill of others and encourage others to involve in such acts.
Buddhist Practitioner must endure all kinds of humiliation and slander and let others attain glory. Slandering others while displays one’s good virtues is a major offense in Bodhisattva vows.
Vow Not to be Stingy and be Generous
One must be always ready to help anyone who comes to one’s aid. One must not be stingy or encourage others to be stingy.
If one gets away from helping others when it is needed out of anger or resentment, then one commits a major offense.
Vow to leave Anger and Resentment
Anger and Resentment is one of the key aspects that lead to major offense or sins. So one must be aware of their anger and always tried to suppress their anger and resentment.
Buddhist disciples must not create the conditions, cause or karma of anger and resentment.
Vow Not to Speak Ill of Three Jewels
Buddhist disciples must not involve or use any slander speech against Three Jewels. One must not create the cause or reasons of slander.
Being a faithful Buddha disciples, one feels the pain of thousands of swords when they hear any slander or offensive language against Lord Buddha. But if one is unfaithful disciples and involves oneself in any kind of slandering Three Jewels such as The Buddha, The Dharma, and The Sangha or The Order, one commits a major offense.