What is involved in taking the 8 Precepts For A Day - 八关斋戒?

@Jereme had mentioned his taking of the 8 Precepts For A Day in this topic:

Curious, I searched for some discourses by Venerables on this practice.

Here is Venerable Ru De discussing what is involved in taking the 8 Precepts For A Day - 八关斋戒:

Part 1

Part 2

Venerable Ru De explains why we should take the 8 Precepts For A Day.

Venerable Ru Jun relates a story on the merits of doing the 8 Precepts:


Venerable Ru Jun shares a story of the challenge he faced while at a precept taking event.
from 3:54min to 11:16min

My learning from this story.
The challenges I am facing in my practice now is due to the negative karma I got from hindering other people’s practice previously.
如是因 如是果的道理
And our habit of committing bad karma is strong, probably much stronger than our inclination to do good.

Venerable explains why the merits involved in the first precept of abstinence from taking life is so great.
(from 8:51 min onwards)

I learnt that the merit is great because:
  • you are making a promise to Buddha and the Teachers on a positive act and thus the merits are great
  • by keeping the precept, you can giving all sentient life the benefit of not being afraid ( 无畏施)

In the same video, Venerable also cautions against going home on the same day after taking the 8 Precepts. Iunderstand this is because the chance of breaking a precept increases when the lay person is not within the environment of the monastery.
An example is that the precept of abstinence from dancing, music, visiting shows, flowers, make-up, the wearing of ornaments and decorations is hard to do with entertainment devices all around us (our mobile phones, televisions and computers).

(view from 11:28 min onwards)