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The Sutta Pitaka


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The Anguttara Nikaya

The "Further-factored" Discourses

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Anguttara Nikaya III.65

Kalama Sutta(^)

To the Kalamas

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
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I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One, on a wandering tour among the Kosalans with a large community of monks, arrived at Kesaputta, a town of the Kalamas. The Kalamas of Kesaputta heard it said, "Gotama the contemplative -- the son of the Sakyans, having gone forth from the Sakyan clan -- has arrived at Kesaputta. And of that Master Gotama this fine reputation has spread: 'He is indeed a Blessed One, worthy, & rightly self-awakened, consummate in knowledge & conduct, well-gone, a knower of the cosmos, an unexcelled trainer of those persons ready to be tamed, teacher of human & divine beings, awakened, blessed. He has made known -- having realized it through direct knowledge -- this world with its devas, maras, & brahmas, its generations with their contemplatives & priests, their rulers & common people; has explained the Dhamma admirable in the beginning, admirable in the middle, admirable in the end; has expounded the holy life both in its particulars & in its essence, entirely perfect, surpassingly pure. It is good to see such a worthy one.'"

So the Kalamas of Kesaputta went to the Blessed One. On arrival, some of them bowed down to him and sat to one side. Some of them exchanged courteous greetings with him and, after an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, sat to one side. Some of them sat to one side having saluted him with their hands palm-to-palm over their hearts. Some of them sat to one side having announced their name & clan. Some of them sat to one side in silence.

As they sat there, the Kalamas of Kesaputta said to the Blessed One, "Lord, there are some priests & contemplatives who come to Kesaputta. They expound & glorify their own doctrines, but as for the doctrines of others, they deprecate them, revile them, show contempt for them, & disparage them. And then other priests & contemplatives come to Kesaputta. They expound & glorify their own doctrines, but as for the doctrines of others, they deprecate them, revile them, show contempt for them, & disparage them. They leave us absolutely uncertain & in doubt: Which of these venerable priests & contemplatives are speaking the truth, and which ones are lying?"

"Of course you are uncertain, Kalamas. Of course you are in doubt. When there are reasons for doubt, uncertainty is born. So in this case, Kalamas, don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, 'This contemplative is our teacher.' When you know for yourselves that, 'These qualities are unskillful; these qualities are blameworthy; these qualities are criticized by the wise; these qualities, when undertaken & carried out, lead to harm & to suffering' -- then you should abandon them.

"What do you think, Kalamas? When greed arises in a person, does it arise for welfare or for harm?"

"For harm, lord."

"And this greedy person, overcome by greed, his mind possessed by greed, kills living beings, takes what is not given, goes after another person's wife, tells lies, and induces others to do likewise, all of which is for long-term harm & suffering."

"Yes, lord."

"Now, what do you think, Kalamas? When aversion arises in a person, does it arise for welfare or for harm?"

"For harm, lord."

"And this aversive person, overcome by aversion, his mind possessed by aversion, kills living beings, takes what is not given, goes after another person's wife, tells lies, and induces others to do likewise, all of which is for long-term harm & suffering."

"Yes, lord."

"Now, what do you think, Kalamas? When delusion arises in a person, does it arise for welfare or for harm?"

"For harm, lord."

"And this deluded person, overcome by delusion, his mind possessed by delusion, kills living beings, takes what is not given, goes after another person's wife, tells lies, and induces others to do likewise, all of which is for long-term harm & suffering."

"Yes, lord."

"So what do you think, Kalamas: Are these qualities skillful or unskillful?"

"Unskillful, lord."

"Blameworthy or blameless?"

"Blameworthy, lord."

"Criticized by the wise or praised by the wise?"

"Criticized by the wise, lord."

"When undertaken & carried out, do they lead to harm & to suffering, or not?"

"When undertaken & carried out, they lead to harm & to suffering. That is how it appears to us."

"So, as I said, Kalamas: 'Don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, "This contemplative is our teacher." When you know for yourselves that, "These qualities are unskillful; these qualities are blameworthy; these qualities are criticized by the wise; these qualities, when undertaken & carried out, lead to harm & to suffering" -- then you should abandon them.' Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"Now, Kalamas, don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, 'This contemplative is our teacher.' When you know for yourselves that, 'These qualities are skillful; these qualities are blameless; these qualities are praised by the wise; these qualities, when undertaken & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness' -- then you should enter & remain in them.

"What do you think, Kalamas? When lack of greed arises in a person, does it arise for welfare or for harm?"

"For welfare, lord."

"And this ungreedy person, not overcome by greed, his mind not possessed by greed, doesn't kill living beings, take what is not given, go after another person's wife, tell lies, or induce others to do likewise, all of which is for long-term welfare & happiness."

"Yes, lord."

"What do you think, Kalamas? When lack of aversion arises in a person, does it arise for welfare or for harm?"

"For welfare, lord."

"And this unaversive person, not overcome by aversion, his mind not possessed by aversion, doesn't kill living beings, take what is not given, go after another person's wife, tell lies, or induce others to do likewise, all of which is for long-term welfare & happiness."

"Yes, lord."

"What do you think, Kalamas? When lack of delusion arises in a person, does it arise for welfare or for harm?"

"For welfare, lord."

"And this undeluded person, not overcome by delusion, his mind not possessed by delusion, doesn't kill living beings, take what is not given, go after another person's wife, tell lies, or induce others to do likewise, all of which is for long-term welfare & happiness."

"Yes, lord."

"So what do you think, Kalamas: Are these qualities skillful or unskillful?"

"Skillful, lord."

"Blameworthy or blameless?"

"Blameless, lord."

"Criticized by the wise or praised by the wise?"

"Praised by the wise, lord."

"When undertaken & carried out, do they lead to welfare & to happiness, or not?"

"When undertaken & carried out, they lead to welfare & to happiness. That is how it appears to us."

"So, as I said, Kalamas: 'Don't go by reports, by legends, by traditions, by scripture, by logical conjecture, by inference, by analogies, by agreement through pondering views, by probability, or by the thought, "This contemplative is our teacher." When you know for yourselves that, "These qualities are skillful; these qualities are blameless; these qualities are praised by the wise; these qualities, when undertaken & carried out, lead to welfare & to happiness" -- then you should enter & remain in them.' Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

"Now, Kalamas, one who is a disciple of the noble ones -- thus devoid of greed, devoid of ill will, undeluded, alert, & resolute -- keeps pervading the first direction [the east] -- as well as the second direction, the third, & the fourth -- with an awareness imbued with good will. Thus he keeps pervading above, below, & all around, everywhere & in every respect the all-encompassing cosmos with an awareness imbued with good will: abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.

"He keeps pervading the first direction -- as well as the second direction, the third, & the fourth -- with an awareness imbued with compassion. Thus he keeps pervading above, below, & all around, everywhere & in every respect the all-encompassing cosmos with an awareness imbued with compassion: abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.

"He keeps pervading the first direction -- as well as the second direction, the third, & the fourth -- with an awareness imbued with appreciation. Thus he keeps pervading above, below, & all around, everywhere & in every respect the all-encompassing cosmos with an awareness imbued with appreciation: abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.

"He keeps pervading the first direction -- as well as the second direction, the third, & the fourth -- with an awareness imbued with equanimity. Thus he keeps pervading above, below, & all around, everywhere & in every respect the all-encompassing cosmos with an awareness imbued with equanimity: abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.

"Now, Kalamas, one who is a disciple of the noble ones -- his mind thus free from hostility, free from ill will, undefiled, & pure -- acquires four assurances in the here-&-now:

"'If there is a world after death, if there is the fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then this is the basis by which, with the break-up of the body, after death, I will reappear in a good destination, the heavenly world.' This is the first assurance he acquires.

"'But if there is no world after death, if there is no fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then here in the present life I look after myself with ease -- free from hostility, free from ill will, free from trouble.' This is the second assurance he acquires.

"'If evil is done through acting, still I have willed no evil for anyone. Having done no evil action, from where will suffering touch me?' This is the third assurance he acquires.

"'But if no evil is done through acting, then I can assume myself pure in both respects.' This is the fourth assurance he acquires.

"One who is a disciple of the noble ones -- his mind thus free from hostility, free from ill will, undefiled, & pure -- acquires these four assurances in the here-&-now."

"So it is, Blessed One. So it is, O One Well-gone. One who is a disciple of the noble ones -- his mind thus free from hostility, free from ill will, undefiled, & pure -- acquires four assurances in the here-&-now:

"'If there is a world after death, if there is the fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then this is the basis by which, with the break-up of the body, after death, I will reappear in a good destination, the heavenly world.' This is the first assurance he acquires.

"'But if there is no world after death, if there is no fruit of actions rightly & wrongly done, then here in the present life I look after myself with ease -- free from hostility, free from ill will, free from trouble.' This is the second assurance he acquires.

"'If evil is done through acting, still I have willed no evil for anyone. Having done no evil action, from where will suffering touch me?' This is the third assurance he acquires.

"'But if no evil is done through acting, then I can assume myself pure in both ways.' This is the fourth assurance he acquires.

"One who is a disciple of the noble ones -- his mind thus free from hostility, free from ill will, undefiled, & pure -- acquires these four assurances in the here-&-now.

"Magnificent, lord! Magnificent! Just as if he were to place upright what was overturned, to reveal what was hidden, to show the way to one who was lost, or to carry a lamp into the dark so that those with eyes could see forms, in the same way has the Blessed One -- through many lines of reasoning -- made the Dhamma clear. We go to the Blessed One for refuge, to the Dhamma, and to the Sangha of monks. May the Blessed One remember us as lay followers who have gone to him for refuge, from this day forward, for life."

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Anguttara Nikaya III.66

Salha Sutta(^)

To Salha

Translated from the Pali by Ñanamoli Thera.
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Thus I heard. On one occasion the venerable Nandaka was living at Savatthi in the Eastern Monestary, Migara's Mother's Palace. Then Migara's grandson, Salha, and Pekhuniya's grandson, Rohana, went to the venerable Nandaka, and after salutation they sat down at one side. When they had done so the venerable Nandaka said to Migara's grandson Salha:

"Come, Salha, do not be satisfied with hearsay or with tradition or with legendary lore or with what has come down in scriptures or with conjecture or with logical inference or with weighing evidence or with a liking for a view after pondering it or with someone else's ability or with the thought 'The monk is our teacher.' When you know in yourself 'These things are unprofitable, liable to censure, condemned by the wise, being adopted and put into effect, they lead to harm and suffering,' then you should abandon them. What do you think? Is there greed?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "Covetousness is the meaning of that, I say. Through greed a covetous man kills breathing things, takes what is not given, commits adultery, and utters falsehood, and he gets another to do likewise. Will that be long for his harm and suffering?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "What do you think, is there hate?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "Ill-will is the meaning of that, I say. Through hate a malevolent man kills breathing things...Will that be long for his harm and suffering?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "What do you think? Is there delusion?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "Ignorance is the meaning of that, I say. Through ignorance a deluded man kills breathing things...Will that be long for his harm and suffering?" -- "Yes, venerable sir."

"What do you think? Are these things profitable or unprofitable?" -- "Unprofitable, venerable sir." -- "Reprehensible or blameless?" -- "Reprehensible, venerable sir." -- "Condemned or commended by the wise?" -- "Condemned by the wise, venerable sir." -- "Being adopted and put into effect, do they lead to harm and suffering, or do they not, or how does it appear to you in this case?" -- "Being adopted and put into effect, venerable sir, they lead to harm and suffering. So it appears in this case." -- "Now that was the reason why I told you 'Come Salha, do not be satisfied with hearsay...When you know in yourself "These things are unprofitable," then you should abandon them.'

"Come Salha, do not be satisfied with hearsay...or with the thought, 'The monk is our teacher.' When you know in yourself: 'These things are profitable, blameless, commended by the wise, being adopted and put into effect they lead to welfare and happiness,' then you should practice them and abide in them. What do you think? Is there non-greed?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "Uncovetousness is the meaning of that, I say. Through non- greed an uncovetous man does not kill breathing things or take what is not given or commits adultery or utter falsehood, and he gets another to do likewise. Will that be long for his welfare and happiness?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "What do you think? Is there non-hate?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "Non ill-will is the meaning of that, I say. Through non ill-will an unmalevolent man does not kill breathing things...Will that be long for his welfare and happiness?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "What do you think? Is there non-delusion?" -- "Yes, venerable sir." -- "True knowledge is the meaning of that, I say. Through non-delusion a man with true knowledge does not kill breathing things...Will that be long for his welfare and happiness?" -- "Yes, venerable sir."

"What do you think? Are these things profitable or unprofitable?" -- "Profitable, venerable sir." -- "Reprehensible or blameless?" -- "Blameless, venerable sir." -- "Condemned or commended by the wise?" -- "Commended by the wise, venerable sir." -- "Being adopted and put into effect, do they lead to welfare and happiness, or do they not, or how does it appear to you in this case?" -- "Being adopted and put into effect, venerable sir, they lead to welfare and happiness. So it appears to us in this case." -- "Now that was the reason why I told you 'Come Salha, do not be satisfied with hearsay...when you know in yourself "These things are profitable..." then you should practice them and abide in them.'

"Now a disciple who is ennobled [by reaching the Noble Path], who has rid himself in this way of covetousness and ill-will and is undeluded, abides with his heart imbued with loving-kindness extending over one quarter, likewise the second quarter, likewise the third quarter, likewise the fourth quarter, and so above, below, around, and everywhere, and to all as to himself; he abides with his heart abundant, exalted, measureless in loving-kindness without hostility or ill-will extending over the all-encompassing world. He abides with his heart imbued with compassion...gladness...equanimity extending over the all- encompassing world. Now he understands this state of contemplation in this way: 'There is this [state of Divine Abiding in me who have entered the Stream]. There is what has been abandoned [which is the amount of greed, hate and delusion exhausted by the Stream-entry Path]. There is a superior goal [which is Arahantship]. And there is an ultimate escape from this whole field of perception.'

"When he knows and sees in this way, his heart is liberated from the taint of sensual desire, from the taint of being, and from the taint of ignorance. When liberated [by reaching the Arahant Path], there comes thereafter the knowledge that it is liberated. He knows that birth is ended, that the Divine Life has been lived out, that what had to be done is done, and that there is no more of this to come. He understands thus: 'Formerly there was greed which was bad, and now there is none, which is good. Formerly there was hate, which was bad, and now there is none, which is good. Formerly there was delusion, which was bad, and now there is none, which is good.' So here and now in this very life he is parched no more [by the fever of craving's thirst], his fires of greed, hate and delusion are extinguished and cooled out; experiencing bliss, he abides [for the remainder of his last life-span] divinely pure in himself."

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Anguttara Nikaya III.71

Muluposatha Sutta (^)

The Roots of the Uposatha

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying in Savatthi at the Eastern Monastery, the palace of Migara's mother. Now at that time -- it being the Uposatha day -- Visakha, Migara's mother, went to the Blessed One in the middle of the day and, on arrival, having bowed down to him, sat to one side. As she was sitting there the Blessed One said to her, "Well now, Visakha, why are you coming in the middle of the day?"

"Today I am observing the Uposatha, lord."

"Visakha, there are these three Uposathas. Which three? The Uposatha of a cowherd, the Uposatha of the Jains, and the Uposatha of the Noble Ones.

"And what is the Uposatha of a cowherd? Just as when a cowherd returns the cattle to their owners in the evening, he reflects: 'Today the cattle wandered to that spot and this, drank at this spot and that; tomorrow they will wander to that spot and this, will drink at this spot and that'; in the same way, there is the case where a certain person observing the Uposatha reflects, 'Today I ate this sort of non-staple food and that sort of staple food. Tomorrow I will eat that sort of non-staple food and this sort of staple food.' He spends the day with an awareness imbued with that covetousness, with that greed. Such is the Uposatha of a cowherd, Visakha. When this Uposatha of a cowherd is undertaken, it is not of great fruit or great benefit, not of great glory or great radiance.

"And what is the Uposatha of the Jains? There are the contemplatives called the Niganthas (Jains). They get their disciple to undertake the following practice: 'Here, my good man. Lay down the rod with regard to beings who live more than 100 leagues to the east...more than 100 leagues to the west...more than 100 leagues to the north...more than 100 leagues to the south.' Thus they get the disciple to undertake kindness & sympathy to some beings, but not to others.

"On the Uposatha day, they get their disciple to undertake the following practice: 'Here, my good man. Having stripped off all your clothing, say this: "I am nothing by anything or of anything. Thus there is nothing by anything or of anything that is mine."' Yet in spite of that, his parents know of him that 'This is our child.' And he knows of them that 'These are my parents.' His wives & children know of him that 'This is our husband & father.' And he knows of them that 'These are my wives & children.' His workers & slaves know of him that 'This is our master.' And he knows of them that 'These are my workers & slaves.' Thus at a time when he should be persuaded to undertake truthfulness, he is persuaded to undertake falsehood. At the end of the night, he resumes the consumption of his belongings, even though they aren't given back to him. This counts as stealing, I tell you. Such is the Uposatha of the Jains, Visakha. When this Uposatha of the Jains is undertaken, it is not of great fruit or great benefit, not of great glory or great radiance.

"And what is the Uposatha of the Noble Ones? It is the cleansing of the defiled mind through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique?

"There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the Tathagata, thus: 'Indeed, the Blessed One is worthy and rightly self-awakened, consummate in knowledge & conduct, well-gone, an expert with regard to the world, unexcelled as a trainer for those people fit to be tamed, the Teacher of divine & human beings, awakened, blessed.' As he is recollecting the Tathagata, his mind is calmed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned, just as when the head is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the head cleansed through the proper technique? Through the use of cosmetic paste & clay & the appropriate human effort. This is how the head is cleansed through the proper technique. In the same way, the defiled mind is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique? There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the Tathagata...As he is recollecting the Tathagata, his mind is cleansed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned. He is thus called a disciple of the noble ones undertaking the Brahma-Uposatha. He lives with Brahma [= the Buddha]. It is owing to Brahma that his mind is calmed, that joy arises, and that whatever defilements there are in his mind are abandoned. This is how the mind is cleansed through the proper technique.

"[Again, the Uposatha of the Noble Ones] is the cleansing of the mind through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique?

"There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the Dhamma, thus: 'The Dhamma is well-expounded by the Blessed One, to be seen here & now, timeless, inviting verification, pertinent, to be realized by the wise for themselves.' As he is recollecting the Dhamma, his mind is calmed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned, just as when the body is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the body cleansed through the proper technique? Through the use of scouring balls & bath powder & the appropriate human effort. This is how the body is cleansed through the proper technique. In the same way, the defiled mind is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique? There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the Dhamma...As he is recollecting the Dhamma, his mind is cleansed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned. He is thus called a disciple of the noble ones undertaking the Dhamma-Uposatha. He lives with Dhamma. It is owing to Dhamma that his mind is calmed, that joy arises, and that whatever defilements there are in his mind are abandoned. This is how the mind is cleansed through the proper technique.

"[Again, the Uposatha of the Noble Ones] is the cleansing of the mind through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique?

"There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the Sangha, thus: 'The Sangha of the Blessed One's disciples who have practiced well...who have practiced straight-forwardly...who have practiced methodically...who have practiced masterfully -- in other words, the four types [of noble disciples] when taken as pairs, the eight when taken as individual types -- they are the Sangha of the Blessed One's disciples: worthy of gifts, worthy of hospitality, worthy of offerings, worthy of respect, the incomparable field of merit for the world.' As he is recollecting the Sangha, his mind is calmed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned, just as when clothing is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is clothing cleansed through the proper technique? Through the use of salt earth & lye & cow dung & the appropriate human effort. This is how clothing is cleansed through the proper technique. In the same way, the defiled mind is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique? There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the Sangha...As he is recollecting the Sangha, his mind is cleansed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned. He is thus called a disciple of the noble ones undertaking the Sangha-Uposatha. He lives with the Sangha. It is owing to the Sangha that his mind is calmed, that joy arises, and that whatever defilements there are in his mind are abandoned. This is how the mind is cleansed through the proper technique.

"[Again, the Uposatha of the Noble Ones] is the cleansing of the mind through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique?

"There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects his own virtues, thus: '[They are] untorn, unbroken, unspotted, unsplattered, liberating, praised by the wise, untarnished, conducive to concentration.' As he is recollecting virtue, his mind is calmed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned, just as when a mirror is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is a mirror cleansed through the proper technique? Through the use of oil & ashes & chamois & the appropriate human effort. This is how a mirror is cleansed through the proper technique. In the same way, the defiled mind is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique? There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects his own virtues...As he is recollecting virtue, his mind is cleansed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned. He is thus called a disciple of the noble ones undertaking the virtue-Uposatha. He lives with virtue. It is owing to virtue that his mind is calmed, that joy arises, and that whatever defilements there are in his mind are abandoned. This is how the mind is cleansed through the proper technique.

"[Again, the Uposatha of the Noble Ones] is the cleansing of the mind through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique?

"There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the devas, thus: 'There are the Devas of the Four Great Kings, the Devas of the Thirty-three, the Yama Devas, the Contented Devas, the devas who delight in creation, the devas who have power over the creations of others, the devas of Brahma's retinue, the devas beyond them. Whatever conviction they were endowed with that -- when falling away from this life -- they re-arose there, the same sort of conviction is present in me as well. Whatever virtue they were endowed with that -- when falling away from this life -- they re-arose there, the same sort of virtue is present in me as well. Whatever learning they were endowed with that -- when falling away from this life -- they re-arose there, the same sort of learning is present in me as well. Whatever generosity they were endowed with that -- when falling away from this life -- they re-arose there, the same sort of generosity is present in me as well. Whatever discernment they were endowed with that -- when falling away from this life -- they re-arose there, the same sort of discernment is present in me as well.' As he is recollecting the devas, his mind is calmed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned, just as when a gold is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is gold cleansed through the proper technique? Through the use of a furnace, salt earth, red chalk, a blow-pipe, tongs, & the appropriate human effort. This is how gold is cleansed through the proper technique. In the same way, the defiled mind is cleansed through the proper technique. And how is the defiled mind cleansed through the proper technique? There is the case where the disciple of the noble ones recollects the devas...As he is recollecting the devas, his mind is cleansed, and joy arises; the defilements of his mind are abandoned. He is thus called a disciple of the noble ones undertaking the Deva-Uposatha. He lives with the devas. It is owing to the devas that his mind is calmed, that joy arises, and that whatever defilements there are in his mind are abandoned. This is how the mind is cleansed through the proper technique.

"Furthermore, the disciple of the noble ones reflects thus: 'As long as they live, the Arahants -- abandoning the taking of life -- abstain from the taking of life. They dwell with their rod laid down, their knife laid down, scrupulous, merciful, compassionate for the welfare of all living beings. Today I too, for this day & night -- abandoning the taking of life -- abstain from the taking of life. I dwell with my rod laid down, my knife laid down, scrupulous, merciful, compassionate for the welfare of all living beings. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants -- abandoning the taking of what is not given -- abstain from taking what is not given. They take only what is given, accept only what is given, live not by stealth but by means of a self that has become pure. Today I too, for this day & night -- abandoning the taking of what is not given -- abstain from taking what is not given. I take only what is given, accept only what is given, live not by stealth but by means of a self that has become pure. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants -- abandoning uncelibacy -- live a celibate life, aloof, refraining from the sexual act that is the villager's way. Today I too, for this day & night -- abandoning uncelibacy -- live a celibate life, aloof, refraining from the sexual act that is the villager's way. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants -- abandoning false speech -- abstain from false speech. They speak the truth, hold to the truth, are firm, reliable, no deceivers of the world. Today I too, for this day & night -- abandoning false speech -- abstain from false speech. I speak the truth, hold to the truth, am firm, reliable, no deceiver of the world. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants -- abandoning fermented & distilled liquors that cause heedlessness -- abstain from fermented & distilled liquors that cause heedlessness. Today I too, for this day & night -- abandoning fermented & distilled liquors that cause heedlessness -- abstain from fermented & distilled liquors that cause heedlessness. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants live on one meal a day, abstaining from food at night, refraining from food at the wrong time of day [from noon until dawn]. Today I too, for this day & night, live on one meal, abstaining from food at night, refraining from food at the wrong time of day. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants abstain from dancing, singing, music, watching shows, wearing garlands, beautifying themselves with perfumes & cosmetics. Today I too, for this day & night, abstain from dancing, singing, music, watching shows, wearing garlands, beautifying myself with perfumes & cosmetics. By means of this factor I emulate the Arahants, and my Uposatha will be observed.

"'As long as they live, the Arahants -- abandoning high & imposing seats & beds -- abstain from high & imposing seats & beds. They make low beds, on a pallet or a spread of straw. Today I too, for this day & night -- abandoning high & imposing seats & beds -- abstain from high & imposing seats & beds. I make a low bed, on a pallet or a spread of straw.'

"Such is the Uposatha of the Noble Ones, Visakha. When this Uposatha of the Noble Ones is undertaken, it is of great fruit & great benefit, of great glory & great radiance. And how is it of great fruit & great benefit, of great glory & great radiance?

"Suppose that one were to exercise kingship, rule, & sovereignty over these sixteen great lands replete with the seven treasures, i.e., over the Angas, Maghadans, Kasis, Kosalans, Vajjians, Mallas, Cetis, Vansans, Kurus, Pañcalas, Macchas, Surasenas, Assakas, Avantis, Gandharans, & Kambojans: It would not be worth one-sixteenth of this Uposatha endowed with eight factors. Why is that? Kingship over human beings is a meager thing when compared with heavenly bliss.

"Fifty human years are equal to one day & night among the Devas of the Four Great Kings. Thirty such days & nights make a month. Twelve such months make a year. Five hundred such heavenly years constitute the life-span among the Devas of the Four Great Kings. Now, it is possible that a certain man or woman -- from having observed this Uposatha endowed with eight factors -- on the break-up of the body, after death, might be reborn among the Devas of the Four Great Kings. It was in reference to this that it was said, 'Kingship over human beings is a meager thing when compared with heavenly bliss.'

"A human century is equal to one day & night among the Devas of the Thirty-Three. Thirty such days & nights make a month...One thousand such heavenly years constitute the life-span among the Devas of the Thirty-three. Now, it is possible that a certain man or woman -- from having observed this Uposatha endowed with eight factors -- on the break-up of the body, after death, might be reborn among the Devas of the Thirty-three. It was in reference to this that it was said, 'Kingship over human beings is a meager thing when compared with heavenly bliss.'

"Two human centuries are equal to one day & night among the Yama Devas...Two thousand such heavenly years constitute the life-span among the Yama Devas...

"Four human centuries are equal to one day & night among the Contented Devas...Four thousand such heavenly years constitute the life-span among the Contented Devas...

"Eight human centuries is equal to one day & night among the devas who delight in creation...Eight thousand such heavenly years constitute the life-span among the devas who delight in creation...

"Sixteen human centuries are equal to one day & night among the devas who have power over the creations of others. Thirty such days & nights make a month. Twelve such months make a year. Sixteen thousand such heavenly years constitute the life-span among the devas who have power over the creations of others. Now, it is possible that a certain man or woman -- from having observed this Uposatha endowed with eight factors -- on the break-up of the body, after death, might be reborn among the devas who have power over the creations of others. It was in reference to this that it was said, 'Kingship over human beings is a meager thing when compared with heavenly bliss.'"

One should not kill a being
    or take what is not given;
should not tell a lie
    or be a drinker of strong drink;
should abstain from uncelibacy, the sexual act;
should not eat at night, the wrong time of day;
should not wear a garland or use a scent;
should sleep on a pallet, a mat spread on the ground --
for this eight-factored Uposatha
has been proclaimed by the Awakened One
to lead to the end
    of suffering & stress.

The moon & sun, both fair to see,
shedding radiance wherever they go,
& scattering darkness as they move through space,
brighten the sky, illumining the quarters.
Within their range is found wealth:
    pearl, crystal, beryl,
    lucky-gem, platinum, nugget-gold,
    & the refined gold called 'Hataka.'
        Yet they --
    like the light of all stars
    when compared with the moon --
aren't worth one sixteenth
of the eight-factored Uposatha.

So whoever -- man or woman --
is endowed with the virtues
of the eight-factored Uposatha,
having done meritorious deeds,
productive of bliss,
    beyond reproach, goes
    to the heavenly state.

---o0o---

Anguttara Nikaya III.72

Channa Sutta(^)

To Channa the Wanderer

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

---o0o---

On one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Savatthi at Jeta's Grove, Anathapindika's monastery. Then Channa the Wanderer[5] went to Ven. Ananda and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings with him. After an exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, he sat to one side. As he was sitting there, he said to Ven. Ananda, "Do you, too, friend Ananda, advocate the abandoning of passion? Do you advocate the abandoning of aversion? Do you advocate the abandoning of delusion?"

"Yes, friend, we advocate the abandoning of passion, the abandoning of aversion, & the abandoning of delusion."

"But, friend Ananda, seeing what drawbacks in passion do you advocate the abandoning of passion? Seeing what drawbacks in aversion do you advocate the abandoning of aversion? Seeing what drawbacks in delusion do you advocate the abandoning of delusion?"

"A person impassioned, his mind bound up, overcome with passion, wills for his own detriment, wills for the detriment of others, wills for the detriment of both. He also experiences mental stress & sorrow. But having abandoned passion, he doesn't will for his own detriment, doesn't will for the detriment of others, doesn't will for the detriment of both. He doesn't experience mental stress or sorrow.

"A person impassioned, his mind bound up, overcome with passion, engages in bodily misconduct, in verbal misconduct, in mental misconduct. But having abandoned passion, he doesn't engage in bodily misconduct, in verbal misconduct, or in mental misconduct.

"A person impassioned, his mind bound up, overcome with passion, doesn't discern, as it actually is, what is of profit to himself, what is of profit to others, what is of profit to both. But having abandoned passion, he discerns, as it actually is, what is of profit to himself, what is of profit to others, what is of profit to both.

"Passion, my friend, makes you blind, makes you sightless, makes you ignorant. It brings about the cessation of discernment, is conducive to trouble, and does not lead to Unbinding.

"An aversive person, his mind bound up, overcome with aversion, wills for his own detriment, wills for the detriment of others, wills for the detriment of both. He also experiences mental stress & sorrow. But having abandoned aversion, he doesn't will for his own detriment, doesn't will for the detriment of others, doesn't will for the detriment of both. He doesn't experience mental stress or sorrow.

"An aversive person, his mind bound up, overcome with aversion, engages in bodily misconduct, in verbal misconduct, in mental misconduct. But having abandoned aversion, he doesn't engage in bodily misconduct, in verbal misconduct, or in mental misconduct.

"An aversive person, his mind bound up, overcome with aversion, doesn't discern, as it actually is, what is of profit to himself, what is of profit to others, what is of profit to both. But having abandoned aversion, he discerns, as it actually is, what is of profit to himself, what is of profit to others, what is of profit to both.

"Aversion, my friend, makes you blind, makes you sightless, makes you ignorant. It brings about the cessation of discernment, is conducive to trouble, and does not lead to Unbinding.

"A deluded person, his mind bound up, overcome with delusion, wills for his own detriment, wills for the detriment of others, wills for the detriment of both. He also experiences mental stress & sorrow. But having abandoned delusion, he doesn't will for his own detriment, doesn't will for the detriment of others, doesn't will for the detriment of both. He doesn't experience mental stress or sorrow.

"A deluded person, his mind bound up, overcome with delusion, engages in bodily misconduct, in verbal misconduct, in mental misconduct. But having abandoned delusion, he doesn't engage in bodily misconduct, in verbal misconduct, or in mental misconduct.

"A deluded person, his mind bound up, overcome with delusion, doesn't discern, as it actually is, what is of profit to himself, what is of profit to others, what is of profit to both. But having abandoned delusion, he discerns, as it actually is, what is of profit to himself, what is of profit to others, what is of profit to both.

"Delusion, my friend, makes you blind, makes you sightless, makes you ignorant. It brings about the cessation of discernment, is conducive to trouble, and does not lead to Unbinding.

"Seeing these drawbacks in passion we advocate the abandoning of passion. Seeing these drawbacks in aversion we advocate the abandoning of aversion. Seeing these drawbacks in delusion we advocate the abandoning of delusion."

"But is there, my friend, a path, is there a way to the abandoning of that passion, aversion, & delusion?"

"Yes, my friend, there is a path, there is a way to the abandoning of that passion, aversion, & delusion."

"And what is that path, my friend, what is that way to the abandoning of that passion, aversion, & delusion?"

"Just this noble eightfold path: right view, right resolve, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. This is the path, this is the way to the abandoning of that passion, aversion, & delusion."

"It is an auspicious path, my friend Ananda, it is an auspicious way to the abandoning of that passion, aversion, & delusion -- enough for the sake of heedfulness."

---o0o---

Note

5. This is not the same Channa as the one mentioned in DN 16 or the origin story to Sanghadisesa 12. [Go back]

 

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AN00 | AN01 | AN02 | AN03 - 03a -03b |AN04 - 04a - 04b | AN05 - 05a - 05b | AN06 | AN07 | AN08 - 08a - 08b | AN09 | AN10 | AN11

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