As we know fourth precept is the one precept that the Bodhisatta has never said to have broken since he started cultivating Paramita. When I need to prevent a Buddhist person form lying, I state the above statement. And that is the reason that I was also prevented by telling lies.

But if we need to prevent a non-Buddhist person from telling lies or going against fourth precept, how can we do. How can we motivate him/her not to lie?

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4 Answers 4


There are very many non-buddist people (some billions of people) so you can not watch everyone and police them against breaking a precept.

But you can forget about anyone else and watch yourself instead. That way you'll use your time wisely.

If you go judging other people you'll create pride ( I am superior to the others because I can do this and that) you will create anger and aversion because someone is not obeying a rule.

You have to watch yourself, forget about watching others.


Simply ask him whether he likes to be deceived and cheated if some one else did it to him. If someone cannot be trusted would you act on what he says. How comfortable would he be to have to put up or deal with a person who is trying to deceived him. Lies cannot always be kept under wrap and if it surfaces what might happen. This would be a better way to a Buddhist also.


But if we need to prevent a non-Buddhist person from telling lies or going against fourth precept, how can we do. How can we motivate him/her not to lie?

I think the whole point in Buddhism is, that you can't change someone else. You can only change yourself. This is dukkha, people are doing bad things even though you're trying to stop them. Keep that in mind.

You could try to make a philosophical argument telling the truth (e.g. Immanuel Kant).

Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law.

Which means more or less 'One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself'

Kant asserted that lying, or deception of any kind, would be forbidden under any interpretation and in any circumstance. In Grounding, Kant gives the example of a person who seeks to borrow money without intending to pay it back. This is a contradiction because if it were a universal action, no person would lend money anymore as he knows that he will never be paid back. The maxim of this action, says Kant, results in a contradiction in conceivability (and thus contradicts perfect duty). With lying, it would logically contradict the reliability of language. If it were universally acceptable to lie, then no one would believe anyone and all truths would be assumed to be lies. The right to deceive could also not be claimed because it would deny the status of the person deceived as an end in itself. The theft would be incompatible with a possible kingdom of ends. Therefore, Kant denied the right to lie or deceive for any reason, regardless of context or anticipated consequences.

If it helps, good, if not: well, this is how it is.


Meditation is not just about sitting in a certain postures, concentration etc etc. It is about understanding order of things. Meditation implies inwardness i.e. focus on yourself not on others. You yourself are not perfect. How can you ask others to be perfect or follow a path or a percept? Become perfect if not then at least disciplined and people will follow you.

  • People confuse meditation with meditation technique. Sure Buddha recommended many techniques. Many disciples of Buddha created their very own techniques. But the key to Meditation is understanding Nature and its order. If one identifies himself as Buddhist and others as non-Buddhist its a pride, a sense of superiority. There are only two kinds of people on this Earth - conscious and unconscious. If you are conscious, unconscious people will follow you and automatically all percepts of Buddha. Ranting against non-Buddhist will not help. Commented Mar 31, 2016 at 3:07

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