Taking Refuge in the Triple Gem and Five Precepts Banner

Taking refuge and upholding the five precepts are two very rare events in Cebu because a senior monk from overseas will need to fly in to perform the ceremony. Buddhists in Cebu usually will need to fly to Taiwan to undergo these ceremonies.

If you’d like to join the ceremony, you can find our address at the bottom of this page and drop by, or you can register through the link on the right. Registration deadline is on June 22!
Register

The Triple Gems calligraphy pictureThe “Triple Gem” means Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.

What is taking refuge?

A Buddhist or a disciple of Buddha is one who has taken refuge in the Triple Gem as their first step. By taking refuge, one declares that he is a disciple of the Triple Gem. “Dharma” refers to the teachings of the Buddha and “Sangha” is the collective name for the monastic Buddhist community. The Buddha, the Dharma and Sangha are the gems of the spiritual life beyond the bounds of this world. Accordingly to cultivate the way (to practice Buddhism) the first significant thing to do is to take refuge in the Triple Gem. Taking refuge means publicly accepting Buddha as our teacher, the Dharma as his teachings and the Sangha is the religious community. The ceremony for taking refuge is quite important because this ceremony marks the beginning of our commitment to the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha.

Why do we take refuge?

Just as a child must depend on the parents for protection and safety, Buddhists depend on the Triple Gem. Just as a navigator must rely on his compass, Buddhists rely on the Triple Gem. Just as light illuminates the path in darkness, the Triple Gem elucidates the way. In “taking refuge” one seeks guidance and to turns to the Triple Gem for liberation and salvation from suffering. The ceremony for taking refuge is quite important because this ceremony marks the beginning of our commitment to Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. Only someone who has taken refuge in the Triple Gem can truly call himself a Buddhist.

Benefits of Taking Refuge:

  • One will not fall into the realms of evil.
  • One will understand the Law of Cause and Effect and cease all evils.
  • One will gain self-esteem and dignity in character.
  • One will accomplish good deeds and accumulate more merits.
  • One will establish foundations of taking further precepts and reach Buddhahood.

 

The Meaning of Taking Refuge in the Triple Gem

In our endeavor to strive for perfection and liberation from the stress of life, the Buddha, Dharma and the Sangha are the most precious Gems we have.

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The Five Precepts

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Five Precepts Buddhists should observe the precepts after they have taken refuge in the Triple Gem as the precepts represent the foundation of all virtuous actions as well as the moral standard for the human race. Although there are different precepts for monastic and lay people, all precepts are based on the Five precepts and that is why the Five Precepts are called the “Foundation Precepts”.

Taking precepts are very similar to students following the rules of their school or people abiding by the common law in society. The only difference is that the school rules and law are external restrictions while Buddhist precepts are a form of self-discipline and are thus internal regulations. If a person driving on a expressway fails to obey the precepts, then he will face risk of breaking the rules and attracting trouble during his life. Thus it is essential for a Buddhist to observe the precepts.

Precepts are divided into monastic precepts and lay precepts. The lay precepts include: The Five precepts, and the contents of the Five Precepts are described as follows:

  • No Killing
  • No Stealing
  • No Sexual Misconduct
  • No Lying
  • No Drugs/Intoxicants

Those who are new to Buddhism often approach the precepts with a sense of fear. They think that upholding the precepts means that they can’t do this, or they can’t do that, and that their lives will become constrained. But the precepts are there simply to prevent us from doing wrong. Not only are they not restrictive, but they carry with them a sense of freedom. This freedom comes from not interfering with or disturbing others. To uphold the precepts we must regulate the body and mind so that we do not violate the lives of others.

If you’d like to join the ceremony, you can find our address below and drop by, or you can register through the link on the right. Registration deadline is on June 22!
Register

Where To Find Us:

Address:
FGS Chu Un Temple, 246, V. Rama Avenue, Cebu City, Philippines

Tel No:
032-253-8144

Email:
chuun_temple@yahoo.com

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