What are Sila Vata (religious or monastic precepts)? How are they different from the 5 precepts?

I heard Luang Phaw talk about Sila Vata (religious or monastic precepts). What are they? How are they different from the 5 precepts? https://dmc.tv/a3534

Dhamma Articles > Question and Answer for Life
[ Oct 16th, 2004 ] - [ read : 14197 ]

Question:
I heard Luang Phaw talk about Sila Vata (religious or monastic precepts). What are they?  How are they different from the 5 precepts?
  

Answer
by Venerable Dhattajeevo Bhikku 

What are the Sila Vata? How are they different from the 5 precepts?

At first, Sila Vata are the precepts that emphasize the monk’s precepts which are different from people who only maintain 5 precepts.

You understand the 5 precepts already.  Normally people only maintain the 5 precepts.  It’s enough for them.  But for a person about to ordain as a monk, a person who will do away with all his defilements, 5 precepts are inadequate.  He must maintain the Sila Vata, precepts beyond the 5 precepts. What are the Sila Vata?  I will discuss those momentarily.  Consider this first.

Why is it necessary to distinguish between the precepts for common people and the precepts for those who will ordain?

Soldiers have two levels at which they perform good deeds.  When an enemy attacks, the goodness, the thing a soldier will do first is to defend his group, his army, his men’s lives.  He must do this first.  He cannot let the enemy destroy these things.  In simple terms, he must defend his borders, his country.  Even if he cannot destroy his enemies, he cannot allow the enemy to trespass onto his territory.  This is goodness for a soldier, a soldier’s decency.  He must maintain his base, though this is only goodness at a basic level.

So what is the higher level of goodness for a soldier?  When a soldier has the opportunity to invade the enemy’s lands, to annihilate and demolish his enemy, to take over large amounts of his enemy’s territory, to eliminate his enemy completely, this is the higher level of goodness for a soldier. Is this clear?

So we are the same way. Keeping the 5 precepts as we do on typical days counts as goodness at the basic level for people.  We hold off the defilements.  We do not let them put pressure on us.

On Buddhist days, for some people the day before and for others the day itself, we want to perform good deeds like a monk.  Why do monks ordain?  They ordain to drive out, to attack and eliminate their defilements completely. These people are copying their teachers. On the day before a Buddhist day, on the day itself, for at least that day, or 8 days, or 15 days, or whatever number of days, they maintain the Sila Vata like Luang Phaw.

How do you do this, go from 5 to 8 precepts?

What is the sixth precept? After 12 noon, we do not consume any food.  At most we drink a little bit of a beverage.  This is enough.  For what reason?  Because it is considered that 2 meals daily are enough for us to live.  As for the third meal, if we chant, pray, maintain the precepts, and meditate, we do not use much energy.  So 2 meals are enough.

So what is the seventh precept?  A person cannot dance or sing.  A person cannot use makeup on the eyes, put on lipstick, or use cosmetics on the face. A person cannot watch a play, soap opera, movie, musical, or any other type of performance.  This precept keeps our minds from becoming distracted.  Every time we watch these things, even though the man lacks good looks, he still wants to become an actor.  It is like this every time he sees an actor.  Women also.  Even when they are not attractive, they watch plays, shows, movies, and they start to think they can be actresses.  Their minds are distracted.  Therefore, no more.  Stay away from these things.

What is the eighth precept? Do not sleep on thick, soft bedding. Do not do this.  Your mind will be distracted easily.  When we maintain the sixth, seventh, and eighth precepts, it helps keep our minds from distraction.  This is especially true for teenagers.  They are easily distracted by sexual matters.  Lust arises easily in teenagers.  As a result, when our grandparents and great-grandparents reach the right age, they start to go to the temple.  They maintain the precepts easily.  When the oldest child marries, whether it is a daughter or a son that gets married, the parents quickly enter the temple and maintain the 8 precepts.

Why?  Because they are preparing to be grandparents.  They must be examples of ethical behavior for their children to see.

So beyond adding the sixth, seventh, and eighth precepts, the third precept, part of the 5 precepts, says “Be satisfied with your spouse.  Do not commit adultery.”  When a person maintains the 8 precepts, the Sila Vata, he/she is bringing this third precept to a higher level.  Even though he/she has a spouse, he/she does not sleep with his/her spouse.  He/she behaves like a monk, like Luang Phaw, he copies Luang Phaw.  He/she is ready?  How is he/she ready?  He/she is prepared to ordain with Luang Phaw.  This is the Sila Vata.

What are the Sila Vata? They are the precepts intended to conquer the defilements.  They are not just the 5 precepts which hold the defilements at bay.  If you ask how they differ from one another.  The 5 precepts repel the defilements.  The Sila Vata demolish the defilements so that nothing remains of them.


http://goo.gl/arxdj


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