Majjhima Nikaya


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Majjhima Nikāya
III. Upari Paṇṇāsa
1. Devadaha Vagga

Sutta 107

Ganaka-Moggallāna Suttaɱ

To the Brahmin Ganaka Moggallana

Translated from the Pali by Sister Upalavanna

 


 

[1][chlm][pts] I heard thus.

At one time the Blessed One lived in the Pubba monastery of Migara's mother in Savatthi. The brahmin Ganakamoggallāna approached the Blessed One exchanged friendly greetings, sat on a side and said thus to the Blessed One. 'Venerable sir, as it is seen in the palace of Migara's mother, right from the lowest step of the staircase, this gradual, training, work and method. It is also seen in education and archery. As for me, I train my pupils, to count in ones, in twos, threes, fours, fives, sixes, sevens, eights, nines, tens and even in hundreds. Venerable sir, do we find the same gradual, training, work and method in the Dispensation too?'

'Brahmin, the gradual, training, work and method could also be shown in this Dispensation. Like a clever trainer of horses getting a young thoroughbred to be trained, would first train it in the bit of the bridle and would give the later training. In the same manner the Thus Gone One training a person would tell him. Come bhikkhu be virtuous, abiding by the higher code of rules, practise the right conduct, seeing fear in the slightest fault. When the bhikkhu practises right conduct, seeing fear in the slightest fault, the Thus Gone One gives him a further training. Come bhikkhu protect your doors of mental contact. Seeing a form do not take the sign or details. To one abiding not protecting the mental faculty of the eye, evil desires of covetousness and displeasure may arise, fall to its control. Hearing a sound, ... re ... . scenting a smell, ... re ... . enjoying a taste, ... re ... . experiencing a touch with the body, ... re ... . and cognizing an idea in the mind do not take the sign or details. To one abiding not protecting the mental contact of the mind, evil desires of covetousness and displeasure may arise, fall to its control. Brahmin, when the bhikkhu is protected in his doors of mental contact, the Thus Gone One gives him a further training. Come bhikkhu, know the right amount to partake of food. Partake food reflecting, it is not, for play, for intoxication, or to look beautiful, but for the upkeep of the body. Not for the enjoyment of soups but to lead the holy life. Reflect I will put an end to earlier feelings, will not arouse new, for a faultless pleasant abiding. Brahmin, when the bhikkhu knows the right amount to partake of food, the Thus Gone One gives him a further training. Come bhikkhu abide wakeful. During the day, sit in the cankamana and clean the mind of hindering things. In the first watch of the night sit in the cankamana and clean the mind of hindering things. In the middle watch of the night turn to the right, making the lion's posture, place one foot over the other and with the perception of waking go to sleep. In the last watch of the night, sit in the cankamana and clean the mind of hindering things. When the bhikkhu is yoked to wakefulness, the Thus Gone One gives him a further training. Come bhikkhu be endowed with mindful awareness. Be mindful when approaching and receeding, looking on and looking about, bending and stretching, bearing the three robes and bowl, enjoying, drinking, eating and tasting, urinating and extreting, when going, standing, sitting and lying until awake. Be mindful when talking and keeping silence. When the bhikkhu is endowed with mindful awareess, the Thus Gone One gives a further training. Come bhikkhu abound a secluded dwelling. Abound a forest, the root of a tree, a mountain grotto, a charnel ground, a jungle path, an open space or a leaves hut. Then he abounds a forest, the root of a tree, a mountain grotto, a charnel ground, a jungle path, an open space or a leaves hut. After the meal, he sits cross-legged, with the body errect and mindfulness established in front of him. He abides dispelling the coveting mind and cleans the mind of coveting thoughts. He abides dispelling the angry mind and cleans the mind of angry thoughts, with compassion for all living things. Dispelling sloth and torpor he abides mindful and aware of a perception of light to dispel sloth and torpor. He abides dispelling restlessness and worry, internally appeased cleans the mind of restlessness and worry. Abides dispelling doubts about merits that should be done and should not be done and cleans the mind of doubts.

Dispelling the five hindrances and wisely making the finer defilements of the mind weak, he secludes the mind from sensual and evil thoughts. With thoughts and thought processes and with joy and pleasantness born of seclusion he abides in the first jhāna. Overcoming thoughts and thought processes, the mind internally appeased and settled in one point, and with joy and pleasantness born of concentration, he abides in the second jhāna. Abiding mindful and aware of equanimity to joy and detachment, experiences pleasantness with the body too,[1] and abides in the third jhāna. To this, the noble ones say mindfully abiding in pleasantness with equanimity. Dispelling pleasantness and unpleasantness and earlier havig dispelled pleasure and displeasure, purifying mindfulness with equanimity attains to the fourth jhāna. Brahmin, this is our advice to the trainer bhikkhu who is yet to attain the noble end of the yoke. As for those bhikkhus, who are arahants, with desires destroyed, the holy life lived, done what should be done, the weight dismissed, attained to the highest good, the bond 'to be' destroyed. are rightfully released. To them these things, become pleasant abidings here and now. with mindful awareness.'

The brahmin Ganakamoggallāna then said thus to the Blessed One. 'Good Gotama, thus instructed and advised do all these disciples realize highest enligtenment or do some realize and others not realize highest enlightenment?'

'Some of my disciples thus instructed and advised realize highest enlightenment and others do not.'

'Good Gotama, when there is enlightenment, the path to enlightenment and good Gotama, the instructor, of the disciples instructed and advised why should some realize highest enlightenment and others not realize highest enlightenment?'

'Brahmin, I will counter question you on this and reply as it pleases you. 'Are you clever in stating the road to Rājagaha?'

'Yes, good sir, I'm clever in stating the road to Rājagaha.'

'A man who wants to go to Rājagaha approaches you and asks how could I get to Rājagaha, may it be explained to me. Then you tell him, good man, this is the road to Rājagaha, go a while on this road, then you come to the village of this name, then proceed along the road for a while, then you come to the hamlet of this name, when you go along that road a while you will see the pleasant forests, parklands and ponds of Rājagaha. That man thus instructed and advised by you take the opposite direction. Then a second man who wants to go to Rājagaha approaches you and asks how could I get to Rājagaha, may it be explained to me. Then you tell him, good man, this is the road to Rājagaha, go a while on this road, then you come to the village of this name, then proceed along the road for a while, then you come to the hamlet of this name, when you go a while along that road, you will see the pleasant forests, parklands and ponds of Rājagaha. That man thus instructed and advised by you, safely reach Rājagaha. Brahmin, when Rājagaha is there, the road to Rājagaha is there and the adviser and instructor is there, why should one take the opposite direction and go the wrong way and the other safely reach Rājagaha?'

'Good Gotama, I'm only the instructor of the path.'

'Brahmin, in the same manner, when there is enlightenment, the path to enlightenment and when I'm there to advise, my disciples thus advised and instructed by me a certain one realizes highest enlightenment and a certain one does not realize highest enlightenment. What could be done, the Thus Gone One is only the instructor of the path.'

Then the brahmin Ganakamoggallāna said to the Blessed One. 'Good Gotama, those without faith, have left the household and become homeless for the purpose of a livelihood, crafty and fraudulent, trained deceivers puffed up and noisy, not steady and talkative, not controlled in the mental faculties not knowing the right amount to partake of food, not yoked to wakefulness, not desirous of the recluseship, not honouring the training, living in abundance and lethargic, become lazy has given up the yoke to seclusion, without mindful awareness, not concentrated and not wise should not live with good Gotama. The sons of clansmen, who have left the household and become homeless out of faith not crafty and fraudulent, not trained deceivers, not puffed up and noisy, steady and not talkative, controlled in the mental faculties knowing the right amount to partake of food, yoked to wakefulness, desirous of the recluseship, honouring the training, not living in abundance and not lethargic, with aroused effort for dispelling not given up the yoke to seclusion, with mindful awareness, concentrated and wise should live with good Gotama. Of the scent of roots, the Kālānusārikā is the foremost, of the scent of heartwoods the red ungent is the foremost and of the scent of flowers the Vassika is the foremost, in the same way good Gotama's advice is the highest of the Teachings of today. Now I understand good Gotama, it is as something overturned is reinstalled, something covered is made manifest, as the path was told to someone who has lost his way. It is as though an oil lamp was lighted, for the darkness, for those who have sight to see forms. In various. ways the Teaching is explained, now I take refuge in good Gotama, in the Teaching and the Community of bhikkhus. May I be remembered as a lay disciple who has taken refuge in good Gotama, from today until end of life.'

 


[1] Abiding mindful and aware of equanimity to joy and detachment, experiences pleasantness with the body too (pītiyāca virāgā ca upekhako viharati sato sampajāno sukhaāca kāyena paṭisanvedeti). The bhikkhu abiding in the third jhāna is mindful and aware of equanimity to all feelings that rise and fade with data through the six doors of mental contact. So he develops equanimity to joy and detachment. This is an internal appeasement enjoyed while in that jhāna. It becomes a pleasantness. enjoyed at all times by the arahants.


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