Archive for May, 2012

Fetters
May 28, 2012

 

Mahāli asks the Buddha about the object of the holy life [in the Buddha Sangha]

“Then, Lord, is it for the sake of realizing the practice of contemplation that the Bhikshus live the holy life under the Exalted One Buddha?”

‘No, indeed, Mahāli.  It is not for the sake of this that the Bhikshus live the holy life under my guidance.  There are other higher and more excellent things, Mahāli, for the realization of which the Bhikshus live the holy life under my guidance.’

“And what, Lord, are those higher and more excellent things…”

‘Herein, in my Dharma-Vinaya, a Bhikshu, by the utter destruction of the Three Fetters (of belief in the reality of bodyhood, doubt in the Master and His Teaching, belief in the value of rites and ceremonies), becomes a Stream-winner, saved from the Downfalls, assured of attaining to the perfect wisdom.  That, is one thing higher and more excellent…

Then again, a Bhikshu by the utter destruction of the Three Fetters and by wearing thin (the Fetters) of Lust, Ill-will, and Delusion, becomes a Once-returner, yes, only once more returning to this world he makes an end of woe.  That, is a thing higher and more excellent.

Then again, a Bhikshu by the utter destruction of the Five (last) Fetters that bind to rebirth in the lower worlds becomes spontaneously (in the Formless Worlds), thence to pass utterly away, being of a nature never to return.  That, is a thing higher and more excellent…

Then, again, a Bhikshu even in this very life, by the destruction of the āsavas, having realized by his own higher powers (higher siddhi) the taintless heart-release, the wisdom-release, having so won it abides therein.  This, is a thing yet higher and more excellent, for the sake of realizing which Bhikshus live the holy life under my guidance.  Such are these other things…’

“But Lord, is there a path, is there a way leading to the realization of these things?”

‘There is indeed a Path.  There is indeed a Way so leading.’

“What is that Path, Lord?  What is the Way so leading?”

‘Verily it is this Ariyan Eightfold Path, to wit:   Ariyan view, Ariyan aim;   Ariyan speech;  Ariyan Action;  Ariyan Living;  Ariyan Effort;  Ariyan Mindfulness;  Ariyan Contemplation.  This is the Path, this is the Way leading to the realization of these things.’

 

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(Some sayings of the Buddha – According to the Pali Canon, translated from the Pali by F.L. Woodward, Oxford University Press, Madras, 1925).

 

The five lower fetters that must be utterly destroyed
May 28, 2012

 

“Cut off the five fetters; desert the five fetters; the five fetters subdue.  That Bhikshu who from the five fetters hath freed himself at last, by men is called Crosser of the Stream.” 

 The five lower fetters that bind to the lower worlds:  

utterly destroy the fetter of belief in the reality of bodyhood; 

utterly destroy the fetter of doubt in the Buddha and His teaching;*

utterly destroy the fetter of belief in the value of rites and ceremonies;** 

utterly destroy the fetter of excitement of sensual delight;

utterly destroy the fetter of malevolence;

These are the five fetters that must be utterly destroyed.  

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Notes:

(*)  –  “Wavering.” 

(**) – “The moral taint of dependence on rite and ritual.”

 

Buddha Mind is Chief – III
May 16, 2012

 

According to the Canons, this is the first discipline lesson that The Tathagata says He gives:

“… Just so, the Tathagata takes in hand a man who is to be trained and gives him his first lesson, thus: 

‘Come thou, Bhikkhu!  Be virtuous.  Abide constrained by the restraint of the obligation.  Become versed in the practice of right behaviour; seeing danger in trifling faults, do you undertake the training and be a pupil in the moralities.’

 

Buddha Mind is Chief – II –
May 16, 2012

 

If one would ask for a teaching I would say:  Read – or hear – the first Buddha Sutra, then in the seclusion which is possible for you to obtain, think on it, concentrate on it, until you delight on it.  Then, as it will be seen, there is only one way to realize the first Buddha Sutra:  this is the way, to renounce the world in order to live the holy life under the Buddha guidance.

Buddha is the One Enlightened Master
May 16, 2012

 

Not Ajahn Chah.

 

 

The Tathagata Food Lineage
May 8, 2012

 

What is the One? The One is: All Sentient Beings are Supported by Food” – Kuddhaka-Patha

“Hunger is the worst disease” – Dhammapada

 

The Tathagata Food Lineage is vast, immeasurable, immense, embracing in its infinitude all life righteously sustained by food, at levels that only Buddha in His enlightened wisdom knows.

Just as, in the world, everybody knows that food exists in different levels, i.e. sunlight is food, air is food, water is food, etc., as food is also the solid edible stuff that sustains life of the physical body, accordingly.

But, at this point, it is necessary to say that Buddha did not allow unprofitable talk about food:

 “Now at that time the Bhikkhus of the Band of Six had a habit of rising up in the night before it was dawn. Then, donning wooden slippers, they used to parade up and down in the open air, chattering in shrill loud tones, hawking and spitting, and talking all manner of idle babble, such as: talk about kings and robbers and ministers of state; talk about armies and of fear, tales of fights; talk about food, drink, clothes, beds, lodgings, flower-garlands, scents, kinsfolk, and carriages; about villages, suburbs, towns, provinces, women, and soldiers; gossip of the streets and wells, and tales of ghosts; all sorts of talk; about the world and the Ocean; of things existent and non-existent. …”(*)   (Digha Nikaya, iii.6-7)

 Buddha Sayings on Food

The Buddha sayings on substantial food are the highest source of enlightened wisdom on the subject, and therefore, faithful to them, it is our sincere belief that the present commentary is in accordance to the principles established by the Buddha in the above mentioned sayings, as also with those issued by Him in the Vinaya Sammukamsa:

Vinaya Sammukamsa

“Now, at that time, uncertainty arose in the Bhikkhus with regard to this and that item: ‘Now what is allowed by the Blessed One, Gautama Buddha? What is not allowed?’ They told this matter to the Blessed One, who said:

‘Bhikkhus, whatever I have not objected to, saying: this is not allowable, if it fits in with what is not allowable, if it goes against what is allowable, this is not allowable for you.

Whatever I have not objected to, saying, this is not allowable, if it fits in with what is allowable, if it goes against what is not allowable, this is allowable for you.

And whatever I have not permitted, saying, this is allowable, if it fits in whith what is not allowable, if it goes against what it allowable, this is not allowable for you.

And whatever I have not permitted, saying, this is allowable, if it fits in with what is allowable, if it goes against what is not allowable, this is allowable for you.” (**)

Buddha was not vegetarian

And therefore, vegetarianism is not in accordance to the Vinaya Sammukamsa, due to the fact that vegetarianism does not fit with what is allowable by the Buddha. At the same time, vegetarianism goes against what is allowable by the Buddha. Consequently, vegetarianism is not allowable for me.

According to logic, if one takes refuge in the Buddha, the Buddha Dharma-Vinaya, the Buddha Sangha, the least that he, the monk, or she, the nun, can do, is to try and do what the Buddha did, as a training to be observed. Therefore, as far as the food issue is concerned, if it is fitted in accordance to the Buddha noble [Ariyas] eight-folded path, these truths appear:

 Right view is the Buddha view – Buddha view is the Right view

As the right view is the Buddha view, then, the Buddha view on Food is the Right View, too, and as the Buddha view on Food is non-vegetarian, consequently, vegetarian view is perverted view, and the fact is that, in the Buddha Sangha, vegetarian was Bhikkhu Devadatta, schism-maker, who dissipated his time attempting to convert the whole Sangha to his vegetarian schismatic view. Bhikkhu Devadatta failed miserably, as any other Bhikkhu who follows his foot-steps, shall miserably fail too:

Perverted View

“Whatsoever individual, Bhikkhus, follows perverted views, perverted aim, perverted speech or acts or living, perverted effort, attention, and contemplation; whose knowledge and emancipation are perverted, for him, every action of deed, word, or thought, performed and achieved according to such perverted views; every willed act, every aspiration, every resolve, all his activities, these things one and all conduce to what is distastesful, unpleasing, repulsive, unprofitable, and painful. And why so? Because of his evil view.” (Anguttara Nikaya, v.212).

(To be continued)

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(*) – Some sayings of the Buddha – According to the Pali Canon, translated from the Pali by F.L.Woodward, Oxford University Press, Madras, 1925.

(**) – Translated from the Pali by Bhikkhu Thanissaro, accesstoinsight.org

Buddhists, trust Buddha!
May 6, 2012

 

HAPPY WESAK!

 

 

 

Questions
May 2, 2012

Gautama Buddha was not Thai.  He was not born in Thailand.  Then, why the Thai Buddhist Sangha presents all images of the Buddha with a Thai face?

Gautama Buddha was not Chinese.  He was not born in China.  Then, why the Chinese Buddhist Sangha presents all images of the Buddha with a Chinese face?

Gautama Buddha was not Tibetan.  He was not born in Tibet.  Then, why the Tibetan Buddhist Sangha presents all images of the Buddha with a Tibetan face?