Is It the Buddhist Ideal to Call for Everybody in Buddhist Circles

发布日期:2017-09-18   字体大小:   

As you have said, the practice of renunciation was encouraged in Buddhist circles. Is it then the Buddhist ideal to call for everybody to do the same?

In terms of Buddhist doctrine and institutions, renunciation should be only for a minority of Buddhists. Firstly, their motives for renunciation and cultivation must be pure and genuine, seeking for deliverance and forsaking worldly (tanhā) with determination . Secondly, after renouncing the world, they are required to live up to the standard both in doctrines and in conduct. If they have the desire to get married, they should go back to laity voluntarily. Once they break the four fundamental rules against murder of a human being or abetting a murder, theft, sexual intercourse and exaggeration of one’s supernatural power, they should be ostracized from the Sangha Order. Thirdly, there are many restrictions for renunciation. The candidates, for instance, should have their parents’ permission, should be over 20 years of age (for ordination of Bhikkhu and Bhikkhunī), should not be informed or mentally deficient, should not be escaping criminal penalty or debt liabilities, etc. Fourthly, higher ordination (Upasampadā) must be recommended, certified and approved by a council of more than ten elder Bhikkhus (Theras), each with 10 years or more of Upasampadā. On the other hand, it is much easier to return to laity, one needs only information another monk or nun. The Buddhist community is composed of four groups: male and female monastic orders with the responsibility of maintaining the Buddha Dhamma, and male and female laity with the duty of protecting and bolstering the Buddha Dhamma. Together, they form a dual congregation. Therefore, Buddhism does not require everybody to renounce his lay life. Many of the Buddhist scriptures, particularly those of Mahāyāna, such as Vimalakīti-nirdeś and Upāsaka-sīla-sutta are eulogies of laymen who undertake Buddhist practice at home. (From Essentials of Buddhism