Ethics Policy of the Kwan Um School of Zen
Over 20 years ago, the Kwan Um School of Zen was one of the first Buddhist organizations in the west to institute an ethics policy. We revised it in 2016 to be more comprehensive and to apply to to all of our students and teachers as members of the Kwan Um Sangha.
This policy is built on basic understandings coming from our precepts and vows: our job is to help each other; we should be aware of how our actions affect others; open and honest communication are essential to provide a basis for trust. Senior students, teachers and monastics have a special obligation to be aware of the temptations of abuse of power, and the temptations of the misuse of money, alcohol, controlled substances and sex.
In any community of human beings, misunderstandings and misdeeds will inevitably occur. The purpose of the ethics policy is to help us when this happens. In particular, as with our previous policy, there is a clear procedure to follow when someone feels there has been a breech of ethics.