Vipassana Fellowship © 2012
      Home
Vipassana Fellowship - Calm and Insight meditation inspired by the early Buddhist tradition.
Mindfulness meditation from the Theravada tradition for the spiritual development of people of all faiths & none. Online courses & support since 1997
BACK

79.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "These three things lead to the falling away of a monk in training. Which three? There is the case where a monk in training enjoys activity, delights in activity, is intent on his enjoyment of activity. He enjoys chatter, delights in chatter, is intent on his enjoyment of chatter. He enjoys sleep, delights in sleep, is intent on his enjoyment of sleep. These are the three things that lead to the falling away of a monk in training.

"These three things lead to the non-falling away of a monk in training. Which three? There is the case where a monk in training doesn't enjoy activity, doesn't delight in activity, isn't intent on his enjoyment of activity. He doesn't enjoy chatter, doesn't delight in chatter, isn't intent on his enjoyment of chatter. He doesn't enjoy sleep, doesn't delight in sleep, isn't intent on his enjoyment of sleep. These are the three things that lead to the non-falling away of a monk in training."

Enjoying activity,
delighting in chatter,
enjoying sleep,
& restless:
    he's incapable
    -- a monk like this --
    of touching superlative
        self-awakening.

So he should be a man of few duties,
of little sloth,
not restless.
    He's capable
    -- a monk like this --
    of touching superlative
        self-awakening.


80.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "There are these three kinds of unskillful thinking. Which three? Thinking concerned with not wanting to be despised; thinking concerned with gains, offerings, & tribute; thinking concerned with an empathy for others.* There are three kinds of unskillful thinking."

    Fettered
to not wanting to be despised;
to gains, offerings, respect;
to delight in companions:
    you're far from the ending of fetters.
But whoever here,
having abandoned
    sons,
    cattle,
    marriage,
    intimates:
        he's capable
        -- a monk like this --
    of touching superlative
        self-awakening.
[* Note: According to the Commentary, this refers to a monk's tendency to be overly intimate with lay people, overly susceptible to the rises and falls in their fortunes, "happy when they are happy, sad when they are sad, busying himself with their affairs."]

[See MN 19]


81.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "I have seen beings conquered by receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. I have seen beings conquered by not receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. I have seen beings conquered both by receiving offerings & by not receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.

"It's not through having heard it from other priests or contemplatives that I say, 'I have seen beings conquered by receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. I have seen beings conquered by not receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. I have seen beings conquered both by receiving offerings & by not receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.'

"Instead, it's from having known it myself, seen it myself, observed it myself that I say, 'I have seen beings conquered by receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. I have seen beings conquered by not receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell. I have seen beings conquered both by receiving offerings & by not receiving offerings -- their minds overwhelmed -- at the break-up of the body, after death, reappearing in the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms, in hell.'"

Both when receiving offerings
    & not:
his concentration
    won't waver,
he remains
    heedful:
he -- continually absorbed in jhana,
subtle in view & clear-seeing,
enjoying the ending of clinging --
    is called a man
    of integrity.
[See Dhp 365-66]


82.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "These three divine sounds sound forth among the devas on appropriate occasions. Which three? When a noble disciple, shaving off his hair & beard, clothing himself in the ochre robe, makes up his mind to go forth from the home life into homelessness, on that occasion the divine sound sounds forth among the devas: 'This noble disciple has made up his mind to do battle with Mara.' This is the first divine sound that sounds forth among the devas on appropriate occasions.

"When a noble disciple lives committed to the development of the seven [sets of] qualities that are wings to awakening,* on that occasion the divine sound sounds forth among the devas: 'This noble disciple is doing battle with Mara.' This is the second divine sound that sounds forth among the devas on appropriate occasions.

"When a noble disciple, through the ending of fermentations dwells in the release of awareness & release of discernment that are free from fermentation, having known & made them manifest for himself right in the present life, on that occasion the divine sound sounds forth among the devas: 'This noble disciple has won the battle. Having been in the front lines of the battle, he now dwells victorious.' This is the third divine sound that sounds forth among the devas on appropriate occasions.

"These are the three divine sounds that sound forth among the devas on appropriate occasions."

Seeing he's won the battle
    -- the disciple of the Rightly
    Self-awakened One --
even the devas pay homage
to this great one, thoroughly mature.
"Homage to you, O thoroughbred man --
you who have won the hard victory,
defeating the army of Death,
    unhindered in
    emancipation."

Thus they pay homage, the devas,
to one who has reached the heart's goal,
for they see in him no means
that would bring him under Death's sway.

[* Note: The wings to awakening are the four frames of reference, the four right exertions, the four bases for power, the five faculties, the five strengths, the seven factors for awakening, and the noble eightfold path.]


83.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "When a deva is about to pass away from the company of devas, five omens appear: his garlands wither, his clothes get soiled, sweat comes out of his armpits, a dullness descends on his body, he no longer delights in his own deva-seat. The devas, knowing from this that 'This deva-son is about to pass away,' encourage him with three sayings: 'Go from here, honorable sir, to a good destination. Having gone to a good destination, gain the gain that is good to gain. Having gained the gain that is good to gain, become well-established.'"

When this was said, a certain monk said to the Blessed One, "What, lord, is the devas' reckoning of going to a good destination? What is their reckoning of the gain that is good to gain? What is their reckoning of becoming well-established?"

"The human state, monks, is the devas' reckoning of going to a good destination. Having become a human being, acquiring conviction in the Dhamma-&-Vinaya taught by the Tathagata: this is the devas' reckoning of the gain that is good to gain. When that conviction is settled within one -- rooted, established, & strong, not to be destroyed by any priest or contemplative; deva, Mara, or Brahma; or anyone else in the world: this is the devas' reckoning of becoming well-established."

When a deva
passes away
from the company of devas
through his life-span's ending,
three sounds sound forth
    -- the devas' encouragement.
'Go from here,
honorable sir,
to a good destination,
to companionship
with human beings.
On becoming a human being,
acquire a conviction
unsurpassed
    in True Dhamma.
That conviction of yours
in True Dhamma, well-taught,
should be     settled,
        rooted,
        established,
-- undestroyed
as long as you live.

Having abandoned
    bodily misconduct,
    verbal misconduct,
    mental misconduct,
and whatever else is flawed;
having done with the body what's skillful,
and much that is skillful with speech,
having done what's skillful
with a heart without limit,
    with no acquisitions,
then -- having made much
of that basis of merit
through generosity --
establish other mortals
in     True Dhamma &
    the holy life.'

With this sympathy, the devas --
when they know a deva is passing away --
encourage him:
    'Come back, deva,
    again & again.'


84.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "These three persons, appearing in the world, appear for the benefit of many, the happiness of many, in sympathy for the world -- for the welfare, the benefit, the happiness of beings human & divine. Which three?

"There is the case where a Tathagata appears in the world, worthy & rightly self-awakened, consummate in clear knowing & conduct, well-gone, an expert with regard to the cosmos, unsurpassed trainer of tamable people, teacher of beings human & divine, awakened, blessed. He teaches the Dhamma admirable in its beginning, admirable in its middle, admirable in its end. He proclaims the holy life both in its particulars & in its essence, entirely perfect, surpassingly pure. This is the first person who, appearing in the world, appears for the benefit of many, the happiness of many, in sympathy for the world -- for the welfare, the benefit, the happiness of beings human & divine.

"Furthermore, there is the disciple of that Teacher who is a worthy one, his mental fermentations ended, who has reached fulfillment, done the task, laid down the burden, attained the true goal, totally destroyed the fetter of becoming, and who is released through right gnosis. He teaches the Dhamma admirable in its beginning, admirable in its middle, admirable in its end. He proclaims the holy life both in its particulars & in its essence, entirely perfect, surpassingly pure. This is the second person who, appearing in the world, appears for the benefit of many, the happiness of many, in sympathy for the world -- for the welfare, the benefit, the happiness of beings human & divine.

"Furthermore, there is the disciple of that Teacher who is a learner, following the way, erudite, endowed with [good] practices & principles. He, too, teaches the Dhamma admirable in its beginning, admirable in its middle, admirable in its end. He proclaims the holy life both in its particulars & in its essence, entirely perfect, surpassingly pure. This is the third person who, appearing in the world, appears for the benefit of many, the happiness of many, in sympathy for the world -- for the welfare, the benefit, the happiness of beings human & divine.

"These are the three persons who, appearing in the world, appear for the benefit of many, the happiness of many, in sympathy for the world -- for the welfare, the benefit, the happiness of beings human & divine."

The Teacher,
Great Seer,
is first in the world;
following him, the disciple
composed;
and then the learner,
erudite, following the way,
endowed with good virtue,
            practices.

These three, chief
among beings divine & human,
giving light, proclaiming the Dhamma,
    throw open the door to the Deathless,
    release many from bondage.
Those who follow the path,
well-taught by the Caravan Leader
    unsurpassed,
will put an end to stress
    right here --
those heeding the message
of the One Well-gone.


85.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "Remain focused, monks, on the foulness of the body. Have mindfulness of in-&-out breathing well established to the fore within you. Remain focused on the inconstancy of all fabrications. For one who remains focused on the foulness of the body, the latent tendency to passion for the property of beauty is abandoned. For one who has mindfulness of in-&-out breathing well established to the fore within oneself, annoying external thoughts & inclinations don't exist. For one who remains focused on the inconstancy of all fabrications, ignorance is abandoned, clear knowing arises."

Focusing on foulness
    in the body,
mindful
    of in & out breathing,
seeing
    the stilling of all fabrications
        -- ardent
        always:
he is a monk
    who's seen rightly.
From that he is there set free.
    A master of direct knowing,
        at peace,
    he is a sage
    gone beyond bonds.
[For the foulness of the body as a meditation theme, see MN 119. For mindfulness of in & out breathing as a meditation theme, see MN 118.]


86.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "With reference to a monk who practices the Dhamma in accordance with the Dhamma, it is this way of according with the Dhamma that he should be described as practicing the Dhamma in accordance with the Dhamma. When speaking, he speaks Dhamma and not non-Dhamma. When thinking, he thinks about Dhamma and not about non-Dhamma. Avoiding both these things, he stays equanimous, mindful, alert."

Dhamma his dwelling,
Dhamma his delight,
a monk pondering Dhamma,
    calling Dhamma to mind,
doesn't fall away
from true Dhamma.

Whether     walking,
        standing,
        sitting, or
        lying down
-- his mind inwardly restrained --
    he arrives
    right at peace.


87.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "There are these three kinds of unskillful thinking that produce blindness, produce lack of vision, produce lack of knowledge, lead to the cessation of discernment, side with vexation, and are not conducive to Unbinding. Which three? Thinking imbued with sensuality .... Thinking imbued with ill-will .... Thinking imbued with harmfulness produces blindness, produces lack of vision, produces lack of knowledge, leads to the cessation of discernment, sides with vexation, and is not conducive to Unbinding. These are the three kinds of unskillful thinking that produce blindness, produce lack of vision, produce lack of knowledge, lead to the cessation of discernment, side with vexation, and are not conducive to Unbinding.

"There are these three kinds of skillful thinking that produce non-blindness, produce vision, produce knowledge, foster discernment, side with non-vexation, and are conducive to Unbinding. Which three? Thinking imbued with renunciation .... Thinking imbued with non-ill-will .... Thinking imbued with harmlessness produces non-blindness, produces vision, produces knowledge, fosters discernment, sides with non-vexation, and is conducive to Unbinding. These are the three kinds of skillful thinking that produce non-blindness, produce vision, produce knowledge, foster discernment, side with non-vexation, and are conducive to Unbinding."

Three skillful thoughts
should be thought,
three unskillful thoughts
rejected.
Whoever stills sustained thoughts
-- as rain would, a cloud of dust --
through an awareness with thinking stilled,
    attains right here
    the state
    of peace.
[See MN 19]


88.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "There are these three inside stains, inside enemies, inside foes, inside murderers, inside adversaries. Which three? Greed is an inside stain, inside enemy, inside foe, inside murderer, inside adversary. Aversion is an inside stain .... Delusion is an inside stain, inside enemy, inside foe, inside murderer, inside adversary. These are the three inside stains, inside enemies, inside foes, inside murderers, inside adversaries."

Greed causes harm.
Greed provokes the mind.
People don't realize it
as a danger born from within.
A person, when greedy,
doesn't know his own welfare;
    when greedy,
doesn't see Dhamma.
    Overcome with greed,
    he's in the dark, blind.

But when one, abandoning greed,
feels no greed
for what would merit greed,
greed gets shed from him --
    like a drop of water
    off a lotus leaf.

Aversion causes harm.
Aversion provokes the mind.
People don't realize it
as a danger born from within.

A person, when aversive,
doesn't know his own welfare;
    when aversive,
doesn't see Dhamma.
    Overcome with aversion
    he's in the dark, blind.

But when one, abandoning aversion,
feels no aversion
for what would merit aversion,
aversion drops away from him --
    like a palm leaf from its stem.

Delusion causes harm.
Delusion provokes the mind.
People don't realize it
as a danger born from within.

A person, when deluded,
doesn't know his own welfare;
    when deluded,
doesn't see Dhamma.
    Overcome with delusion
    he's in the dark, blind.

But when one, abandoning delusion,
feels no delusion
for what would merit delusion,
he disperses all delusion --
    as the rising of the sun, the dark.


89.

This was said by the Blessed One, said by the Arahant, so I have heard: "Conquered by three forms of false Dhamma -- his mind overwhelmed -- Devadatta* is incurably doomed to deprivation, to hell, for an aeon. Which three? Conquered by evil desires -- his mind overwhelmed -- Devadatta is incurably doomed to deprivation, to hell, for the duration of an aeon. Conquered by friendship with evil people -- his mind overwhelmed -- Devadatta is incurably doomed to deprivation, to hell, for the duration of an aeon. And, there being something further to be done, he nevertheless stopped halfway with a lower modicum of distinctive attainment. Conquered by these three forms of false Dhamma -- his mind overwhelmed -- Devadatta is incurably doomed to deprivation, to hell, for an aeon."

May no one in the world
ever be reborn
with evil desire.
Know that,
through that
    evil desire,
his destination's that
of all who have evil desires.

I've heard how Devadatta,
-- regarded as wise, composed,
incandescent with honor --
in the thrall of heedlessness
assaulted the Tathagata
and fell to the four-gated, fearful place:
    Avici, unmitigated hell.

Whoever plots against
one free of corruption
who's done no evil deed:
that evil touches him himself,
    corrupted in mind,
    disrespectful.

Whoever might think
of polluting the ocean
with a pot of poison,
couldn't succeed,
for the mass of water is great.

        So it is
when anyone attacks with abuse
    the Tathagata
    -- rightly-gone,
    of peaceful mind --
for abuse doesn't grow on him.

A wise person should make friends,
    should associate,
with a person like him --
whose path a monk can follow
and reach the ending
of suffering & stress.

[* Note: Devadatta, one of the Buddha's cousins, plotted to take over the Sangha, and ended up causing a schism. His story is told in Cv VII. See also Iti 18.]


NEXT

Dhamma Essay:
The Nobility of the Truths by Bhikkhu Bodhi


Meditation | Resources | Pali Canon | Training | Parisa
Audio | Links | Books | Newsletter | Feedback | Donate
to know - to shape - to liberate


Site Copyright © 2020, Vipassana Fellowship Ltd.     [Terms of Service & Privacy Policy]