Prayers, Vows and Ceremonies
Chanted Prayers – Every day at the Temple we recite prayers in English to receive inspiration from the holy beings, purify our mind and increase our positive energy.
Empowerments – Buddhist empowerments are in essence a very peaceful guided meditation through which we receive the inspiring blessings of a Buddha. Through this powerful connection we can call on them for help and protection, gradually becoming more and more like a Buddha, or pure being, ourselves.
Transference of Consciousness for the Deceased (“Powa” in Tibetan) – Once a month we engage in prayers and meditations on behalf of those who have recently died to help them attain a fortunate rebirth.
Refuge Vow of Becoming a Buddhist – Periodically we offer a Refuge Ceremony where students can formalize their decision to become a Buddhist, which means to make a determination or promise to rely upon Buddha, Dharma and Sangha as our ultimate sources of refuge. To do so means to apply effort to receive Buddha’s inspiration and help from our spiritual friends so that we can gain deep experience of Dharma, the pure states of mind that actually protect us from suffering.
Bodhisattva Vow to Attain Enlightenment – Periodically we offer a Bodhisattva Vow Ceremony where students can formalize their decision to live the Bodhisattva’s way of life. A Bodhisattva is someone who is motivated by universal compassion to reach their highest spiritual potential, enlightenment, in order to free all beings from suffering permanently. A Bodhisattva engages in the following practices in their daily life motivated by this wish: generosity, moral discipline, patience, joyful effort, meditation and wisdom.
Eight Mahayana Precepts – These precepts are designed to help us purify our mind of negativity. This is a one-day practice offered on the 15th of every month at 6:30am. It involves developing a pure motivation, fasting after lunch, and applying extra effort not to engage in any negative actions of body, speech or mind throughout the day.
Pratimoksha Vows – “Pratimoksha” means “personal liberation.” In order to purify our actions of body, speech and mind, we promise to refrain from the following throughout our life: killing, stealing, sexual misconduct (cheating on our partner or with another’s partner), lying and taking intoxicants (including smoking.) These vows are offered periodically, and upon request.
Ordination Vows – The promise to keep the 10 Commitments of Ordination: to abandon killing, stealing, lying or cheating, sexual activity, taking intoxicants and engaging in meaningless activities, and to practice contentment, reduce desire for worldly pleasure, maintain the commitments of refuge, and practice the three higher trainings of moral discipline, concentration and wisdom. There are over 700 monks and nuns throughout the world in the New Kadampa Tradition. Ordination Vows are granted every year at National and International Festivals. If you are interested in learning more about Ordination please speak to the Resident Teacher.
Funeral or Memorial Service – A formal prayer service for those who have recently died.