Rules of the dojo/temple


--to be observed at Amidaji temple and in all its affiliated temples and dojos --

1. When you enter the temple abandon all your personal and worldly affairs. Any discussion except the Dharma should be avoided. 
2. The goal of your presence at the temple is to understand the Jodo Shinshu Dharma and receive shinjin (faith). Here there will be no discussions about other religions. Only the Jodo Shinshu Dharma is promoted at the dojo/temple. 
3. When you enter the dojo or temple, give up to any prejudgments related with race, nationality, ethnicity, sex, social conditions, physical appearance, political opinions, and so on. Before the Buddha we are all the same, so nobody is allowed to look down or criticize somebody on any aspect of his/her personal life. Anything else except listening the Amida Dharma (Jodo Shinshu) and receiving shinjin, has no importance in the temple or dojo.
4. There will never be any fees for attending the activities organized at the dojo/temple for members or non-members. The Dharma is not the property of anyone, so it can’t be sold or bought. Only donations are accepted. If various materials are for sale in the shop or bookstore of the temple, we’ll do our best to provide free items or books for those who can’t afford or don’t want to buy them. 
5. At the dojo/temple we follow the instructions and tasks given to us by the dojo/temple’s representative, who is the only decisional factor in doctrinary, practice and organizatorical matters. Nobody can publicly preach the Dharma without the authorization of the dojo/temple’s teacher.
6. In the dojo/temple only the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist teaching is taught, in the exact way it was presented in the canonical texts[1] of our school. Those who distort the teaching or wish to spread false views that are not present in the canonical texts, don’t have access at the dojo/temple. This rule applies to visiting teachers/priests, too. 
7. In the library or the bookstore of the temple, in the Jodo Shinshu section, only the texts from the canon of our school and the books which are in accord with these texts are promoted. No book which denies the teaching presented in the canonical texts, deteriorates, modifies or adds something which is not present in these texts, is allowed in the library or bookstore of the temple. Also, the authors of these books will never be promoted, translated or invited at the temple.
8. Only those authorized by the teacher of the dojo/temple are allowed to work at official translations. 
9. In the dojo/temple only nembutsu and Buddhist hymns are recited. 
10. Meat eating and alcohol is strictly forbiden at Dharma meetings in the temple or dojo[2] . 
11. Come with 10-15 minutes before the beginning of the religious service and even earlier if you have some tasks and responsibilities.
12. Dress yourself clean. Avoid unpleasant or exaggerated smells. 
13. Keep simplicity and decency in dressing. The dojo/temple is not a podium for vestimentary exaggerations. Everything that has a value in the social life has no value in the temple, thus don’t exaggerate with exterior adornments. Both women and men must avoid all kinds of clothes which uncover too much of the body.

All members of the community (sangha), guests, visitors, with no distinction of priests and lay, will be informed about these rules and will observe them in their letter and spirit. Those who do not wish to observe them have no access in the dojo or temple. The one who watches over these rules to be observed and sanctions their violation is the priest/teacher of the dojo/temple or the representative appointed by him.



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[1] Canonical texts comprise the Three Pure Land sutras delivered by Shakyamuni Buddha, Letters of Shinran (Mattosho), Letters of Rennyo (Gobunsho), Hymns of Shinran (Wasan), etc. The story of Amida is told by Shakyamuni in the Larger Sutra. 
[2] This is not a request for Jodo Shinshu followers to be vegetarians in their private lives, but if they meet inside the dojo or temple they have to abstain from meat and alcohol during their stay.