Buddhist Ethics is the fifth part of Jamgon Kongtrul's monumental Encyclopedia of Buddhism and considered by many scholars to be its heart. Buddhist ethics are not regarded as prohibitory rules, but rather the source of freedom. The three major systems of ethics found in the Tibetan tradition are known simply as the "three vows,"—the vows of personal liberation (pratimoksa), universal liberation (bodhisattva), and secret mantra (tantra). Jamgon Kongtrul explains the need for an authentic teacher-student relationship as the support for one's training. He then provides the complete code of personal liberation as it applies to both monastic and lay persons, the precepts for those aspiring to the life of a bodhisattva, and the exceptional pledges for practitioners on the tantric path of pure perception.
"...a clearly structured and lucid exposition of the qualities of spiritual teachers and their students, as well as of the ethical systems of Hinayana, Mahayana, and Vajrayana Buddhism."—Choice
"It represents a substantial contribution to the study of ethics from the standpoint of Tibetan Buddhism."—AAR Religious Studies Review