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SN 48.44 Pubbakoṭṭhakasutta: At the Eastern Gate

So I have heard. At one time the Buddha was staying in Sāvatthī at the eastern gate. Then the Buddha said to Venerable Sāriputta:

“Sāriputta, do you have faith that the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, immersion, and wisdom, when developed and cultivated, culminate, finish, and end in freedom from death?”

“Sir, in this case I don’t rely on faith in the Buddha’s claim that the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, immersion, and wisdom, when developed and cultivated, culminate, finish, and end in freedom from death. There are those who have not known or seen or understood or realized or experienced this with wisdom. They may rely on faith in this matter. But there are those who have known, seen, understood, realized, and experienced this with wisdom. They have no doubts or uncertainties in this matter. I have known, seen, understood, realized, and experienced this with wisdom. I have no doubts or uncertainties that the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, immersion, and wisdom, when developed and cultivated, culminate, finish, and end in freedom from death.”

“Good, good, Sāriputta! There are those who have not known or seen or understood or realized or experienced this with wisdom. They may rely on faith in this matter. But there are those who have known, seen, understood, realized, and experienced this with wisdom. They have no doubts or uncertainties that the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, immersion, and wisdom, when developed and cultivated, culminate, finish, and end in freedom from death.”


Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 48.44 Pubbakoṭṭhakasutta: At the Eastern Gate by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net.

SN 14.15 Caṅkamasutta: Walking Together

At one time the Buddha was staying near Rājagaha, on the Vulture’s Peak Mountain. Now at that time Venerable Sāriputta was walking together with several mendicants not far from the Buddha. Venerable Mahāmoggallāna was doing likewise, as were Venerable Mahākassapa, Venerable Anuruddha, Venerable Puṇṇa son of Mantāṇī, Venerable Upāli, Venerable Ānanda, and Devadatta.

Then the Buddha said to the mendicants, “Mendicants, do you see Sāriputta walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants have great wisdom. Do you see Moggallāna walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants have great psychic power. Do you see Kassapa walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants advocate austerities. Do you see Anuruddha walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants have clairvoyance. Do you see Puṇṇa son of Mantāṇī walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants are Dhamma speakers. Do you see Upāli walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants are experts in monastic law. Do you see Ānanda walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants are very learned. Do you see Devadatta walking together with several mendicants?”

“Yes, sir.”

“All of those mendicants have corrupt wishes.

Sentient beings come together and converge because of an element. Those who have bad convictions come together and converge with those who have bad convictions. Those who have good convictions come together and converge with those who have good convictions.

In the past, in the future, and also in the present, sentient beings come together and converge because of an element. Those who have bad convictions come together and converge with those who have bad convictions. Those who have good convictions come together and converge with those who have good convictions.”


Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 14.15 Caṅkamasutta: Walking Together by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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SN 21.3 Ghaṭasutta: The Barrel

Thus have I heard. On one occasion the Blessed One was dwelling at Savatthi in Jeta’s Grove, Anathapiṇḍika’s Park. Now on that occasion the Venerable Sāriputta and the Venerable Mahamoggallana were dwelling at Rajagaha in a single dwelling in the Bamboo Grove, the Squirrel Sanctuary. Then, in the evening, the Venerable Sāriputta emerged from seclusion and approached the Venerable Mahamoggallana. He exchanged greetings with the Venerable Mahamoggallana and, when they had concluded their greetings and cordial talk, he sat down to one side and said to him:

“Friend Moggallana, your faculties are serene, your facial complexion is pure and bright. Has the Venerable Mahamoggallana spent the day in a peaceful dwelling?”

“I spent the day in a gross dwelling, friend, but I did have some Dhamma talk.”

“With whom did the Venerable Mahamoggallana have some Dhamma talk?”

“I had some Dhamma talk with the Blessed One, friend.”

“But the Blessed One is far away, friend. He is now dwelling at Savatthi in Jeta’s Grove, Anathapiṇḍika’s Park. Did the Venerable Mahamoggallana approach the Blessed One by means of spiritual power, or did the Blessed One approach the Venerable Mahamoggallana by means of spiritual power?”

“I didn’t approach the Blessed One by means of spiritual power, friend, nor did the Blessed One approach me by means of spiritual power. Rather, the Blessed One cleared his divine eye and divine ear element to communicate with me, and I cleared my divine eye and divine ear element to communicate with the Blessed One.”

“What kind of Dhamma talk did the Venerable Mahamoggallana have with the Blessed One?”

“Here, friend, I said to the Blessed One: ‘Venerable sir, it is said, “one with energy aroused, one with energy aroused.” In what way, venerable sir, does one have energy aroused?’ The Blessed One then said to me: ‘Here, Moggallana, a bhikkhu with energy aroused dwells thus: “Willingly, let only my skin, sinews, and bones remain, and let the flesh and blood dry up in my body, but I will not relax my energy so long as I have not attained what can be attained by manly strength, by manly energy, by manly exertion.” It is in such a way, Moggallana, that one has aroused energy.’ Such, friend, is the Dhamma talk that I had with the Blessed One.”

“Friend, compared to the Venerable Mahamoggallana we are like a few grains of gravel compared to the Himalayas, the king of mountains. For the Venerable Mahamoggallana is of such great spiritual power and might that if so he wished he could live on for an aeon.”

“Friend, compared to the Venerable Sāriputta we are like a few grains of salt compared to a barrel of salt. For the Venerable Sāriputta has been extolled, lauded, and praised in many ways by the Blessed One:

“‘As Sāriputta is supreme
In wisdom, virtue, and peace,
So a bhikkhu who has gone beyond
At best can only equal him.’”

In this manner both these great nagas rejoiced in what was well stated and well declared by the other.


Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 21.3 Ghaṭasutta: The Barrel by Bhikkhu Bodhi on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaCentral.net or DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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SN 47.13 Cundasutta: With Cunda

At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. At that time Venerable Sāriputta was staying in the Magadhan lands near the little village of Nālaka, and he was sick, suffering, gravely ill. And the novice Cunda was his carer.

Then Venerable Sāriputta became fully extinguished because of that sickness. Then Cunda took Sāriputta’s bowl and robes and set out for Sāvatthī. He went to see Venerable Ānanda at Jeta’s grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Sir, Venerable Sāriputta has become fully extinguished. This is his bowl and robe.”

“Reverend Cunda, we should see the Buddha about this matter. Come, let’s go to the Buddha and inform him about this.”

“Yes, sir,” replied Cunda.

Then Ānanda and Cunda went to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Sir, this novice Cunda says that Venerable Sāriputta has become fully extinguished. This is his bowl and robe. Since I heard this, my body feels like it’s drugged. I’m disorientated, and the teachings don’t spring to mind.”

“Well, Ānanda, when Sāriputta became fully extinguished, did he take away your entire spectrum of ethical conduct, of immersion, of wisdom, of freedom, or of the knowledge and vision of freedom?”

“No, sir, he did not. But Venerable Sāriputta was my adviser and counselor. He educated, encouraged, fired up, and inspired me. He never tired of teaching the Dhamma, and he supported his spiritual companions. I remember the nectar of the teaching, the riches of the teaching, the support of the teaching given by Venerable Sāriputta.”

“Ānanda, did I not prepare for this when I explained that we must be parted and separated from all we hold dear and beloved? How could it possibly be so that what is born, created, conditioned, and liable to wear out should not wear out? That is not possible.

Suppose there was a large tree standing with heartwood, and the largest branch fell off. In the same way, in the great Saṅgha that stands with heartwood, Sāriputta has become fully extinguished.

How could it possibly be so that what is born, created, conditioned, and liable to wear out should not wear out? That is not possible.

So Ānanda, live as your own island, your own refuge, with no other refuge. Let the teaching be your island and your refuge, with no other refuge.

And how does a mendicant do this? It’s when a mendicant meditates by observing an aspect of the body—keen, aware, and mindful, rid of covetousness and displeasure for the world. They meditate observing an aspect of feelings … mind … principles—keen, aware, and mindful, rid of covetousness and displeasure for the world.

That’s how a mendicant lives as their own island, their own refuge, with no other refuge. That’s how the teaching is their island and their refuge, with no other refuge.

Whether now or after I have passed, any who shall live as their own island, their own refuge, with no other refuge; with the teaching as their island and their refuge, with no other refuge—those mendicants of mine who want to train shall be among the best of the best.”


For a similar sutta, see SN 47. 14.

Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 47.13 Cundasutta: With Cunda by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaCentral.net, DhammaTalks.org or AccessToInsight.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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SN 2.29 Susimasutta: With Susīma

At Sāvatthī.

Then Venerable Ānanda went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to him, “Ānanda, do you endorse Sāriputta?”

“Sir, who on earth would not endorse Venerable Sāriputta unless they’re a fool, a hater, delusional, or mentally deranged? Venerable Sāriputta is astute, he has great wisdom, widespread wisdom, laughing wisdom, swift wisdom, sharp wisdom, and penetrating wisdom. He has few wishes, he’s content, secluded, aloof, and energetic. He gives advice and accepts advice; he accuses and criticizes wickedness. Who on earth would not endorse Venerable Sāriputta unless they’re a fool, a hater, delusional, or mentally deranged?”

“That’s so true, Ānanda! That’s so true! Who on earth would not endorse Venerable Sāriputta unless they’re a fool, a hater, delusional, or mentally deranged?” And the Buddha repeated all of Ānanda’s terms of praise.

While this praise of Sāriputta was being spoken, the god Susīma approached the Buddha, escorted by a large assembly of gods. He bowed, stood to one side, and said to him:

“That’s so true, Blessed One! That’s so true, Holy One! Who on earth would not endorse Venerable Sāriputta unless they’re a fool, a hater, delusional, or mentally deranged?” And he too repeated all the terms of praise of Sāriputta, adding, “For I too, sir, whenever I go to an assembly of gods, frequently hear the same terms of praise.”

While this praise of Sāriputta was being spoken, the gods of Susīma’s assembly—uplifted and overjoyed, full of rapture and happiness—generated a rainbow of bright colors.

Suppose there was a beryl gem that was naturally beautiful, eight-faceted, well-worked. When placed on a cream rug it would shine and glow and radiate. In the same way, the gods of Susīma’s assembly generated a rainbow of bright colors.

Suppose there was a pendant of river gold, fashioned by a deft smith, well wrought in the forge. When placed on a cream rug it would shine and glow and radiate. In the same way, the gods of Susīma’s assembly generated a rainbow of bright colors.

Suppose that after the rainy season the sky was clear and cloudless. At the crack of dawn, the Morning Star shines and glows and radiates. In the same way, the gods of Susīma’s assembly generated a rainbow of bright colors.

Suppose that after the rainy season the sky was clear and cloudless. As the sun rises, it would dispel all the darkness from the sky as it shines and glows and radiates. In the same way, the gods of Susīma’s assembly generated a rainbow of bright colors.

Then the god Susīma recited this verse about Venerable Sāriputta in the Buddha’s presence:

“He’s considered astute,
Sāriputta, free of anger.
Few in wishes, sweet, tamed,
the seer shines in the Teacher’s praise!”

Then the Buddha replied to Susīma with this verse about Venerable Sāriputta:

“He’s considered astute,
Sāriputta, free of anger.
Few in wishes, sweet, tamed;
developed and well-tamed, he bides his time.”


Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 2.29 Susimasutta: With Susīma by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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SN 2.20 Anāthapiṇḍikasutta: With Anāthapiṇḍika

Standing to one side, the god Anāthapiṇḍika recited these verses in the Buddha’s presence:

“This is indeed that Jeta’s Grove,
frequented by the Saṅgha of seers,
where the King of Dhamma stayed:
it brings me joy!

Deeds, knowledge, and principle;
ethical conduct, an excellent livelihood;
by these are mortals purified,
not by clan or wealth.

That’s why an astute person,
seeing what’s good for themselves,
would examine the teaching rationally,
and thus be purified in it.

Sāriputta is full of wisdom,
ethics, and peace.
Even a mendicant who has crossed over
might at best equal him.”

This is what the god Anāthapiṇḍika said. Then he bowed and respectfully circled the Buddha, keeping him on his right side, before vanishing right there.

Then, when the night had passed, the Buddha addressed the mendicants: “Mendicants, tonight, a certain glorious god, lighting up the entire Jeta’s Grove, came to me, bowed, stood to one side, and recited these verses in my presence.” The Buddha then repeated the verses in full.

When he said this, Venerable Ānanda said to the Buddha, “Sir, that god must surely have been Anāthapiṇḍika. For the householder Anāthapiṇḍika was devoted to Venerable Sāriputta.”

“Good, good, Ānanda. You’ve reached the logical conclusion, as far as logic goes. For that was indeed the god Anāthapiṇḍika.”


Note: This event is also recounted at the end of MN 143 Anāthapiṇḍikovāda Sutta.

Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 2.20 Anāthapiṇḍikasutta: With Anāthapiṇḍika by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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Thag 17.2 From… Sāriputtattheragāthā: Sāriputta—Part 3

“Calm and still,
thoughtful in counsel, not restless—
he shakes off bad qualities
as the wind shakes leaves off a tree.

Calm and still,
thoughtful in counsel, not restless—
he plucks off bad qualities
as the wind plucks leaves off a tree.

Calm and free of despair,
clear and unclouded,
of good morals, intelligent:
one would make an end of suffering.”

“Some householders, and even some renunciants,
are not to be trusted.
Some who were good later become bad;
while some who were bad become good.”

“Sensual desire, ill will,
dullness and drowsiness,
restlessness, and doubt:
these are the five mental stains for a monk.”

“Whether they’re honored
or not honored, or both,
their immersion doesn’t waver
as they live diligently.

They persistently practice absorption
with subtle view and discernment.
Rejoicing in the ending of grasping,
they’re said to be a true person.”

“The oceans and the earth,
the mountains and the wind—
none of these can compare
with the Teacher’s magnificent liberation.”

“The senior monk who keeps the wheel rolling,
he is very wise and serene.
Like earth, like water, like fire,
he is neither attracted nor repelled.

He has attained the perfection of wisdom,
so intelligent and thoughtful.
He is bright, but seems to be dull;
he always wanders, quenched.”

“I’ve served the teacher
and fulfilled the Buddha’s instructions.
The heavy burden is laid down,
the conduit to rebirth is eradicated.”

“Persist with diligence:
this is my instruction.
Come, I’ll be fully extinguished—
I am everywhere free.”


Read the entire translation of Theragāthā 17.2 Sāriputtattheragāthā: Sāriputta by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaFriends.org or DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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AN 8.28 Dutiyabalasutta: Powers (2nd)

Then Venerable Sāriputta went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to him:

“Sāriputta, how many powers does a mendicant who has ended the defilements have that qualify them to claim: ‘My defilements have ended’?”

“Sir, a mendicant who has ended the defilements has eight powers that qualify them to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’

What eight? Firstly, a mendicant with defilements ended has clearly seen with right wisdom all conditions as truly impermanent. This is a power that a mendicant who has ended the defilements relies on to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’

Furthermore, a mendicant with defilements ended has clearly seen with right wisdom that sensual pleasures are truly like a pit of glowing coals. This is a power that a mendicant who has ended the defilements relies on to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’

Furthermore, the mind of a mendicant with defilements ended slants, slopes, and inclines to seclusion. They’re withdrawn, loving renunciation, and they’ve totally done with defiling influences. This is a power that a mendicant who has ended the defilements relies on to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’

Furthermore, a mendicant with defilements ended has well developed the four kinds of mindfulness meditation. This is a power that a mendicant who has ended the defilements relies on to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’

Furthermore, a mendicant with defilements ended has well developed the four bases of psychic power … the five faculties … the seven awakening factors … the noble eightfold path. This is a power that a mendicant who has ended the defilements relies on to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’

A mendicant who has ended the defilements has these eight powers that qualify them to claim: ‘My defilements have ended.’”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 8.28 Dutiyabalasutta: Powers (2nd) by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaCentral.net or DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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Thag 17.2 From… Sāriputtattheragāthā: Sāriputta—Part 2

“Whether in the village or the wilderness,
in a valley or the uplands,
wherever the perfected ones live
is a delightful place.”

“The wilderness is so lovely!
Though most people don’t like it,
those free of greed are happy there,
as they don’t seek sensual pleasures.”

“Regard one who sees your faults
as a guide to a hidden treasure.
Stay close to one so wise and astute
who corrects you when you need it.
Sticking close to such an impartial person,
things get better, not worse.”

“Advise and instruct;
curb wickedness:
for you shall be loved by the good,
and disliked by the bad.”

“The Blessed One, the Buddha, the seer
was teaching Dhamma to another.
As he taught the Dhamma,
I lent an ear to get the meaning.

My listening wasn’t wasted:
I’m freed, without defilements.”

“Not for knowledge of past lives,
nor even for clairvoyance;
not for psychic powers, or reading the minds of others,
nor for knowing people’s passing away and being reborn;
not for purifying the power of clairaudience,
did I have any wish.”

“His only shelter is the foot of a tree;
shaven, wrapped in his outer robe,
the senior monk foremost in wisdom,
Upatissa himself practices absorption.

When in a meditation free of placing the mind,
a disciple of the Buddha
is at that moment blessed
with noble silence.

As a rocky mountain
is unwavering and well grounded,
so when delusion ends,
a monk, like a mountain, doesn’t tremble.

“To the man who has not a blemish,
who is always seeking purity,
even a hair-tip of evil
seems as big as a cloud.”

“I don’t long for death;
I don’t long for life;
I will lay down this body,
aware and mindful.

I don’t long for death;
I don’t long for life;
I await my time,
like a worker waiting for their wages.”

“Both what came before and what follows after
are nothing but death, not freedom from death.
Practice, don’t perish—
don’t let the moment pass you by.

Just like a frontier city,
is guarded inside and out,
so you should ward yourselves—
don’t let the moment pass you by.
For if you miss your moment
you’ll grieve when sent to hell.”


Read the entire translation of Theragāthā 17.2 Sāriputtattheragāthā: Sāriputta by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaFriends.org or DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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MN 111 Anupadasutta: One by One

[Note: Today’s sutta is much longer and a bit more technical than usual, but it’s one of the few detailed accounts of the process leading to enlightenment by a disciple. It recounts all of the stages of meditation that Ven. Sāriputta went through on his way to become an arahant.]

So I have heard. At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. There the Buddha addressed the mendicants, “Mendicants!”

“Venerable sir,” they replied. The Buddha said this:

“Sāriputta is astute, mendicants. He has great wisdom, widespread wisdom, laughing wisdom, swift wisdom, sharp wisdom, and penetrating wisdom. For a fortnight he practiced discernment of phenomena one by one. And this is how he did it.

Quite secluded from sensual pleasures, secluded from unskillful qualities, he entered and remained in the first absorption, which has the rapture and bliss born of seclusion, while placing the mind and keeping it connected. And he distinguished the phenomena in the first absorption one by one: placing and keeping and rapture and bliss and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, as the placing of the mind and keeping it connected were stilled, he entered and remained in the second absorption, which has the rapture and bliss born of immersion, with internal clarity and mind at one, without placing the mind and keeping it connected.

And he distinguished the phenomena in the second absorption one by one: internal confidence and rapture and bliss and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, with the fading away of rapture, he entered and remained in the third absorption, where he meditated with equanimity, mindful and aware, personally experiencing the bliss of which the noble ones declare, ‘Equanimous and mindful, one meditates in bliss.’

And he distinguished the phenomena in the third absorption one by one: bliss and mindfulness and awareness and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, with the giving up of pleasure and pain, and the ending of former happiness and sadness, he entered and remained in the fourth absorption, without pleasure or pain, with pure equanimity and mindfulness.

And he distinguished the phenomena in the fourth absorption one by one: equanimity and neutral feeling and mental unconcern due to tranquility and pure mindfulness and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, going totally beyond perceptions of form, with the ending of perceptions of impingement, not focusing on perceptions of diversity, aware that ‘space is infinite’, he entered and remained in the dimension of infinite space.

And he distinguished the phenomena in the dimension of infinite space one by one: the perception of the dimension of infinite space and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, going totally beyond the dimension of infinite space, aware that ‘consciousness is infinite’, he entered and remained in the dimension of infinite consciousness.

And he distinguished the phenomena in the dimension of infinite consciousness one by one: the perception of the dimension of infinite consciousness and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, going totally beyond the dimension of infinite consciousness, aware that ‘there is nothing at all’, he entered and remained in the dimension of nothingness.

And he distinguished the phenomena in the dimension of nothingness one by one: the perception of the dimension of nothingness and unification of mind; contact, feeling, perception, intention, mind, enthusiasm, decision, energy, mindfulness, equanimity, and application of mind. He knew those phenomena as they arose, as they remained, and as they went away. He understood: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, going totally beyond the dimension of nothingness, he entered and remained in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception.

And he emerged from that attainment with mindfulness. Then he contemplated the phenomena in that attainment that had passed, ceased, and perished: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is an escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is.

Furthermore, going totally beyond the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception, he entered and remained in the cessation of perception and feeling. And, having seen with wisdom, his defilements came to an end.

And he emerged from that attainment with mindfulness. Then he contemplated the phenomena in that attainment that had passed, ceased, and perished: ‘So it seems that these phenomena, not having been, come to be; and having come to be, they flit away.’ And he meditated without attraction or repulsion for those phenomena; independent, untied, liberated, detached, his mind free of limits. He understood: ‘There is no escape beyond.’ And by repeated practice he knew for sure that there is not.

And if there’s anyone of whom it may be rightly said that they have attained mastery and perfection in noble ethics, immersion, wisdom, and freedom, it’s Sāriputta.

And if there’s anyone of whom it may be rightly said that they’re the Buddha’s true-born child, born from his mouth, born of the teaching, created by the teaching, heir to the teaching, not the heir in things of the flesh, it’s Sāriputta.

Sāriputta rightly keeps rolling the supreme Wheel of Dhamma that was rolled forth by the Realized One.”

That is what the Buddha said. Satisfied, the mendicants approved what the Buddha said.


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Thag 17.2 From… Sāriputtattheragāthā: Sāriputta—Part 1

“One who’s mindful as per their conduct and mindfulness,
diligent as per their intentions and meditation,
happy inside, serene, solitary, contented:
that is what they call a mendicant.

When eating fresh or dried food,
one shouldn’t be overly replete.
A mendicant should wander mindfully,
with empty stomach, taking limited food.

Four or five mouthfuls before you’re full,
drink some water;
this is enough for a resolute mendicant
to live in comfort.

If they cover themselves with a robe
that’s allowable and fit for purpose;
this is enough for a resolute mendicant
to live in comfort.

When sitting cross-legged,
the rain doesn’t fall on the knees;
this is enough for a resolute mendicant
to live in comfort.”

“When you’ve seen happiness as suffering,
and suffering as a dart,
and that there’s nothing between the two—
what keeps you in the world? What would you become?

Thinking, ‘May I have nothing to do with those of bad wishes,
lazy, lacking energy,
unlearned, lacking regard for others’—
what keeps you in the world? What would you become?”

“An intelligent, learned person,
steady in ethics,
devoted to serenity of heart—
let them stand at the head.”

“A beast who likes to proliferate,
enjoying proliferation,
fails to win extinguishment,
the supreme sanctuary from the yoke.

But one who gives up proliferation,
enjoying the state of non-proliferation,
wins extinguishment,
the supreme sanctuary from the yoke.”…


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AN 11.7 Saññāsutta: Percipient

Then Venerable Ānanda went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Could it be, sir, that a mendicant might gain a state of immersion like this? They wouldn’t perceive earth in earth, water in water, fire in fire, or air in air. And they wouldn’t perceive the dimension of infinite space in the dimension of infinite space, the dimension of infinite consciousness in the dimension of infinite consciousness, the dimension of nothingness in the dimension of nothingness, or the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. They wouldn’t perceive this world in this world, or the other world in the other world. And they wouldn’t perceive what is seen, heard, thought, known, attained, sought, or explored by the mind. And yet they would still perceive.”

“It could be, Ānanda, that a mendicant might gain a state of immersion like this. They wouldn’t perceive earth in earth, water in water, fire in fire, or air in air. And they wouldn’t perceive the dimension of infinite space in the dimension of infinite space, the dimension of infinite consciousness in the dimension of infinite consciousness, the dimension of nothingness in the dimension of nothingness, or the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. They wouldn’t perceive this world in this world, or the other world in the other world. And they wouldn’t perceive what is seen, heard, thought, known, attained, sought, or explored by the mind. And yet they would still perceive.”

“But how could this be, sir?”

“Ānanda, it’s when a mendicant perceives: ‘This is peaceful; this is sublime—that is, the stilling of all activities, the letting go of all attachments, the ending of craving, fading away, cessation, extinguishment.’

That’s how a mendicant might gain a state of immersion like this. They wouldn’t perceive earth in earth, water in water, fire in fire, or air in air. And they wouldn’t perceive the dimension of infinite space in the dimension of infinite space, the dimension of infinite consciousness in the dimension of infinite consciousness, the dimension of nothingness in the dimension of nothingness, or the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception in the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. They wouldn’t perceive this world in this world, or the other world in the other world. And they wouldn’t perceive what is seen, heard, thought, known, attained, sought, or explored by the mind. And yet they would still perceive.”

And then Ānanda approved and agreed with what the Buddha said. He got up from his seat, bowed, and respectfully circled the Buddha, keeping him on his right. Then he went up to Venerable Sāriputta, and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, he sat down to one side and said to Sāriputta:

“Could it be, reverend Sāriputta, that a mendicant might gain a state of immersion like this? They wouldn’t perceive earth in earth … And they wouldn’t perceive what is seen, heard, thought, known, attained, sought, or explored by the mind. And yet they would still perceive.”

“It could be, Reverend Ānanda.”

“But how could this be?”

“Ānanda, it’s when a mendicant perceives: ‘This is peaceful; this is sublime—that is, the stilling of all activities, the letting go of all attachments, the ending of craving, fading away, cessation, extinguishment.’ That’s how a mendicant might gain a state of immersion like this. They wouldn’t perceive earth in earth … And they wouldn’t perceive what is seen, heard, thought, known, attained, sought, or explored by the mind. And yet they would still perceive.”

“It’s incredible, it’s amazing! How the meaning and the phrasing of the teacher and the disciple fit together and agree without conflict when it comes to the chief matter! Just now I went to the Buddha and asked him about this matter. And the Buddha explained it to me in this manner, with these words and phrases, just like Venerable Sāriputta. It’s incredible, it’s amazing! How the meaning and the phrasing of the teacher and the disciple fit together and agree without conflict when it comes to the chief matter!”


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SN 17.23 Ekaputtakasutta: An Only Son

So I have heard. At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. There the Buddha addressed the mendicants, “Mendicants!”

“Venerable sir,” they replied. The Buddha said this:

“Possessions, honor, and popularity are brutal, bitter, and harsh. They’re an obstacle to reaching the supreme sanctuary from the yoke.

A faithful laywoman with a dear and beloved only son would rightly appeal to him, ‘My darling, please be like the householder Citta and Hatthaka of Ãḷavī.’

These are a standard and a measure for my male lay disciples, that is, the householder Citta and Hatthaka of Ãḷavī.

‘But my darling, if you go forth from the lay life to homelessness, please be like Sāriputta and Moggallāna.’

These are a standard and a measure for my monk disciples, that is, Sāriputta and Moggallāna.

‘And my darling, may you not come into possessions, honor, and popularity while you’re still a trainee and haven’t achieved your heart’s desire.’

If a trainee who hasn’t achieved their heart’s desire comes into possessions, honor, and popularity it’s an obstacle for them.

So brutal are possessions, honor, and popularity—bitter and harsh, an obstacle to reaching the supreme sanctuary from the yoke.

So you should train like this: ‘We will give up arisen possessions, honor, and popularity, and we won’t let them occupy our minds.’ That’s how you should train.”


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SN 39.16 Dukkarasutta: Hard to Do

At one time Venerable Sāriputta was staying in the land of the Vajjis near Ukkacelā on the bank of the Ganges river. Then the wanderer Sāmaṇḍaka went up to Venerable Sāriputta and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, he sat down to one side and said to Sāriputta:

“Reverend Sāriputta, in this teaching and training, what is hard to do?”

“Going forth, reverend, is hard to do in this teaching and training.”

“But what’s hard to do for someone who has gone forth?”

“When you’ve gone forth it’s hard to be satisfied.”

“But what’s hard to do for someone who is satisfied?”

“When you’re satisfied, it’s hard to practice in line with the teaching.”

“But if a mendicant practices in line with the teaching, will it take them long to become a perfected one?”

“Not long, reverend.”


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SN 45.3 Sāriputtasutta: Sāriputta

[Note: In this sutta, we see that the Arahant Sāriputta already knew the importance of good friends that had to be taught to Ven. Ānanda in a similar sutta. Arahant Sāriputta was well known for his care and appreciation of the community.]

At Sāvatthī.

Then Sāriputta went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Sir, good friends, companions, and associates are the whole of the spiritual life.”

“Good, good, Sāriputta! Good friends, companions, and associates are the whole of the spiritual life. A mendicant with good friends, companions, and associates can expect to develop and cultivate the noble eightfold path. And how does a mendicant with good friends develop and cultivate the noble eightfold path?

It’s when a mendicant develops right view, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right immersion, which rely on seclusion, fading away, and cessation, and ripen as letting go. That’s how a mendicant with good friends develops and cultivates the noble eightfold path.

And here’s another way to understand how good friends are the whole of the spiritual life. For, by relying on me as a good friend, sentient beings who are liable to rebirth, old age, and death, to sorrow, lamentation, pain, sadness, and distress are freed from all these things. This is another way to understand how good friends are the whole of the spiritual life.”



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AN 9.11 Sīhanādasutta: Sāriputta’s Lion’s Roar

[Note: today’s selection is longer than usual, but it gives us a way to understand the mind of an arahant, a fully enlightened being.]

At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery.

Then Venerable Sāriputta went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him, “Sir, I have completed the rainy season residence at Sāvatthī. I wish to depart to wander the countryside.”

“Please, Sāriputta, go at your convenience.” Then Sāriputta got up from his seat, bowed, and respectfully circled the Buddha, keeping him on his right, before leaving.

And then, not long after Sāriputta had left, a certain monk said to the Buddha, “Sir, Venerable Sāriputta attacked me and left without saying sorry.”

So the Buddha addressed one of the monks, “Please, monk, in my name tell Sāriputta that the teacher summons him.”

“Yes, sir,” that monk replied. He went to Sāriputta and said to him, “Reverend Sāriputta, the teacher summons you.”

“Yes, reverend,” Sāriputta replied.

Now at that time the venerables Mahāmoggallāna and Ānanda took a key and went from dwelling to dwelling, saying: “Come forth, venerables! Come forth, venerables! Now Venerable Sāriputta will roar his lion’s roar in the presence of the Buddha!”

Then Venerable Sāriputta went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to him:

“Sāriputta, one of your spiritual companions has made this complaint: ‘Venerable Sāriputta attacked me and left without saying sorry.’”

“Sir, someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose they were to toss both clean and unclean things on the earth, like feces, urine, spit, pus, and blood. The earth isn’t horrified, repelled, and disgusted because of this. In the same way, I live with a heart like the earth, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose they were to wash both clean and unclean things in water, like feces, urine, spit, pus, and blood. The water isn’t horrified, repelled, and disgusted because of this. In the same way, I live with a heart like water, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose a fire were to burn both clean and unclean things, like feces, urine, spit, pus, and blood. The fire isn’t horrified, repelled, and disgusted because of this. In the same way, I live with a heart like fire, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose the wind was to blow on both clean and unclean things, like feces, urine, spit, pus, and blood. The wind isn’t horrified, repelled, and disgusted because of this. In the same way, I live with a heart like the wind, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose a rag was to wipe up both clean and unclean things, like feces, urine, spit, pus, and blood. The rag isn’t horrified, repelled, and disgusted because of this. In the same way, I live with a heart like a rag, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose a boy or girl of a corpse-worker tribe, holding a pot and clad in rags, were to enter a town or village. They’d enter with a humble mind. In the same way, I live with a heart like a boy or girl of a corpse-worker tribe, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose there was a bull with his horns cut, gentle, well tamed and well trained. He’d wander from street to street and square to square without hurting anyone with his feet or horns. In the same way, I live with a heart like a bull with horns cut, abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose there was a woman or man who was young, youthful, and fond of adornments, and had bathed their head. If the carcass of a snake or a dog or a human were hung around their neck, they’d be horrified, repelled, and disgusted. In the same way, I’m horrified, repelled, and disgusted by this rotten body. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.

Suppose someone was to carry around a bowl of fat that was leaking and oozing from holes and cracks. In the same way, I carry around this body that’s leaking and oozing from holes and cracks. Someone who had not established mindfulness of the body might well attack one of their spiritual companions and leave without saying sorry.”

Then that monk rose from his seat, placed his robe over one shoulder, bowed with his head at the Buddha’s feet, and said, “I have made a mistake, sir. It was foolish, stupid, and unskillful of me to speak ill of Venerable Sāriputta with a false, hollow, lying, untruthful claim. Please, sir, accept my mistake for what it is, so I will restrain myself in future.”

“Indeed, monk, you made a mistake. It was foolish, stupid, and unskillful of you to act in that way. But since you have recognized your mistake for what it is, and have dealt with it properly, I accept it. For it is growth in the training of the Noble One to recognize a mistake for what it is, deal with it properly, and commit to restraint in the future.”

Then the Buddha said to Venerable Sāriputta, “Sāriputta, forgive that silly man before his head explodes into seven pieces right here.”

“I will pardon that venerable if he asks me: ‘May the venerable please pardon me too.’”


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AN 4.168 Sāriputtasutta: Sāriputta’s Practice

Then Venerable Mahāmoggallāna went up to Venerable Sāriputta, and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, Mahāmoggallāna sat down to one side, and said to Sāriputta:

“Reverend Sāriputta, there are four ways of practice. What four?

  1. Painful practice with slow insight,
  2. painful practice with swift insight,
  3. pleasant practice with slow insight, and
  4. pleasant practice with swift insight.

These are the four ways of practice. Which one of these four ways of practice did you rely on to free your mind from defilements by not grasping?”

“Reverend Moggallāna … I relied on the pleasant practice with swift insight to free my mind from defilements by not grasping.”


[Note: Arahant Moggallāna’s practice is described in the previous sutta.

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SN 46.4 Vatthasutta: Clothes

[Note: One of the reasons for learning about great disciples like Arahant Sāriputta is to deepen our faith in the Saṅgha. Suttas like this one remind us of the great mental powers these monastics were able to develop by following the Buddha’s instructions.]

At one time Venerable Sāriputta was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. There Sāriputta addressed the mendicants: “Reverends, mendicants!”

“Reverend,” they replied. Sāriputta said this:

“There are these seven awakening factors. What seven? The awakening factors of mindfulness, investigation of principles, energy, rapture, tranquility, immersion, and equanimity. These are the seven awakening factors.

In the morning, I meditate on whichever of these seven awakening factors I want. At midday, and in the evening, I meditate on whichever of these seven awakening factors I want. If it’s the awakening factor of mindfulness, I know that it’s limitless and that it’s properly implemented. While it remains I understand that it remains. And if it subsides in me I understand the specific reason it subsides. … If it’s the awakening factor of equanimity, I know that it’s limitless and that it’s properly implemented. While it remains I understand that it remains. And if it subsides I understand the specific reason it subsides.

Suppose that a ruler or their minister had a chest full of garments of different colors. In the morning, they’d don whatever pair of garments they wanted. At midday, and in the evening, they’d don whatever pair of garments they wanted.

In the same way, in the morning, at midday, and in the evening, I meditate on whichever of these seven awakening factors I want. If it’s the awakening factor of mindfulness, I know that it’s limitless and that it’s properly implemented. While it remains I understand that it remains. And if it subsides I understand the specific reason it subsides. … If it’s the awakening factor of equanimity, I know that it’s limitless and that it’s properly implemented. While it remains I understand that it remains. And if it subsides I understand the specific reason it subsides.”


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SN 8.6 Sāriputtasutta: With Sāriputta

At one time Venerable Sāriputta was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery.

Now at that time Venerable Sāriputta was educating, encouraging, firing up, and inspiring the mendicants in the assembly hall with a Dhamma talk. His words were polished, clear, articulate, and expressed the meaning. And those mendicants were paying attention, applying the mind, concentrating wholeheartedly, and actively listening.

Then Venerable Vaṅgīsa thought, “This Venerable Sāriputta is educating the mendicants. … And those mendicants are paying attention, applying the mind, concentrating wholeheartedly, and actively listening. Why don’t I extoll him in his presence with fitting verses?”

Then Venerable Vaṅgīsa got up from his seat, arranged his robe over one shoulder, raised his joined palms toward Sāriputta, and said, “I feel inspired to speak, Reverend Sāriputta! I feel inspired to speak, Reverend Sāriputta!”

“Then speak as you feel inspired,” said Sāriputta.

Then Vaṅgīsa extolled Sāriputta in his presence with fitting verses:

“Deep in wisdom, intelligent,
expert in what is the pathand what is not the path;
Sāriputta, so greatly wise,
teaches Dhamma to the mendicants.

He teaches in brief,
or he speaks at length.
His call, like a myna bird,
overflows with inspiration.

While he teaches
the mendicants listen to his sweet voice,
sounding attractive,
clear and graceful.
They listen joyfully,
their hearts elated.”


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AN 10.50 Bhaṇḍanasutta: Arguments

At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. Now at that time, after the meal, on return from almsround, several mendicants sat together in the assembly hall. They were arguing, quarreling, and disputing, wounding each other with barbed words.

Then in the late afternoon, the Buddha came out of retreat and went to the assembly hall. He sat down on the seat spread out, and addressed the mendicants: “Mendicants, what were you sitting talking about just now? What conversation was left unfinished?”

“Sir, after the meal, on return from almsround, we sat together in the assembly hall, arguing, quarreling, and disputing, wounding each other with barbed words.”

“Mendicants, this is not appropriate for you gentlemen who have gone forth in faith from the lay life to homelessness.

There are ten warm-hearted qualities that make for fondness and respect, conducing to inclusion, harmony, and unity, without quarreling. What ten? Firstly, a mendicant is ethical, restrained in the monastic code, conducting themselves well and seeking alms in suitable places. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken. When a mendicant is ethical, this warm-hearted quality makes for fondness and respect, conducing to inclusion, harmony, and unity, without quarreling.

Furthermore, a mendicant is very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and comprehending them theoretically. …

Furthermore, a mendicant has good friends, companions, and associates. …

Furthermore, a mendicant is easy to admonish, having qualities that make them easy to admonish. They’re patient, and take instruction respectfully. …

Furthermore, a mendicant is deft and tireless in a diverse spectrum of duties for their spiritual companions, understanding how to go about things in order to complete and organize the work. …

Furthermore, a mendicant loves the teachings and is a delight to converse with, being full of joy in the teaching and training. …

Furthermore, a mendicant lives with energy roused up for giving up unskillful qualities and embracing skillful qualities. They are strong, staunchly vigorous, not slacking off when it comes to developing skillful qualities. …

Furthermore, a mendicant is content with any kind of robes, almsfood, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. …

Furthermore, a mendicant is mindful. They have utmost mindfulness and alertness, and can remember and recall what was said and done long ago. …

Furthermore, a mendicant is wise. They have the wisdom of arising and passing away which is noble, penetrative, and leads to the complete ending of suffering. When a mendicant is wise, this warm-hearted quality makes for fondness and respect, helping the Saṅgha to live in harmony and unity, without quarreling.

These ten warm-hearted qualities make for fondness and respect, conducing to inclusion, harmony, and unity, without quarreling.”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 10.50 Bhaṇḍanasutta: Arguments by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net.

Thag 1.71 Vacchapālattheragāthā: Vacchapāla

For one who sees the meaning so very subtle and fine;
who is skilled in thought and humble in manner;
who has cultivated mature ethics,
it’s not hard to gain extinguishment.


Read this translation of Theragāthā 1.71 Vacchapālattheragāthā: Vacchapāla by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaFriends.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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AN 5.173 Nirayasutta: Hell

Nirayasutta
SUTTA BODY CONTENT GOES HERE

“Mendicants, a lay follower with five qualities is cast down to hell. What five? They kill living creatures, steal, commit sexual misconduct, lie, and use alcoholic drinks that cause negligence. A lay follower with these five qualities is cast down to hell.

A lay follower with five qualities is raised up to heaven. What five? They don’t kill living creatures, steal, commit sexual misconduct, lie, or use alcoholic drinks that cause negligence. A lay follower with these five qualities is raised up to heaven.”


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Kp 2 Dasasikkhāpada: The Ten Precepts

[Note: These are the precepts taken by novice Buddhist monastics.]

  1. I undertake the precept to refrain from killing living creatures.
  2. I undertake the precept to refrain from stealing.
  3. I undertake the precept to refrain from sexual activity.
  4. I undertake the precept to refrain from lying.
  5. I undertake the precept to refrain from taking alcoholic drinks that cause negligence.
  6. I undertake the precept to refrain from food at the wrong time.
  7. I undertake the precept to refrain from seeing shows of dancing, singing, and music .
  8. I undertake the precept to refrain from beautifying and adorning myself with garlands, perfumes, and makeup.
  9. I undertake the precept to refrain from high and luxurious beds.
  10. I undertake the precept to refrain from receiving gold and money.

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AN 3.70 Uposathasutta: Sabbath

[Note: This is a very long sutta, but it contains many valueable teachings. Try to set aside time to read the whole thing. Or if you can’t, please read the verses at the very end that praise observing the sabbath, also known as the uposatha.]

So I have heard. At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in the Eastern Monastery, the stilt longhouse of Migāra’s mother.

Then Visākhā, Migāra’s mother, went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to her, “So, Visākhā, where are you coming from in the middle of the day?”

“Today, sir, I’m observing the sabbath.”

“There are, Visākhā, these three sabbaths. What three? The sabbath of the cowherds, the sabbath of the Jains, and the sabbath of the noble ones.

And what is the sabbath of the cowherds? It’s just like a cowherd who, in the late afternoon, takes the cows back to their owners. They reflect: ‘Today the cows grazed in this place and that, and they drank in this place and that. Tomorrow the cows will graze in this place and that, and drink in this place and that.’ In the same way, someone keeping the sabbath reflects: ‘Today I ate this and that, and had a meal of this and that. Tomorrow I’ll eat this and that, and have a meal of this and that.’ And so they spend their day with a mind full of covetousness. That’s the sabbath of the cowherds. When the cowherd’s sabbath is observed like this it’s not very fruitful or beneficial or splendid or bountiful.

And what is the sabbath of the Jains? There’s a kind of ascetic belonging to a group called the Jains. They encourage their disciples: ‘Please, good people, don’t hurt any living creatures more than a hundred leagues away to the east. Don’t hurt any living creatures more than a hundred leagues away to the west. Don’t hurt any living creatures more than a hundred leagues away to the north. Don’t hurt any living creatures more than a hundred leagues away to the south.’ So they encourage kindness and compassion for some creatures and not others. On the sabbath, they encourage their disciples: ‘Please, good people, take off all your clothes and say: “I don’t belong to anyone anywhere! And nothing belongs to me anywhere!”’ But their mother and father still know, ‘This is our child.’ And they know, ‘This is my mother and father.’ Partner and child still know, ‘This is our supporter.’ And they know, ‘This is my partner and child.’ Bondservants, workers, and staff still know: ‘This is our master.’ And they know, ‘These are my bondservants, workers, and staff.’ So, at a time when they should be encouraged to speak the truth, the Jains encourage them to lie. This, I say, is lying. When the night has passed they use their possessions once more, though they’ve not been given back to them. This, I say, is stealing. That’s the sabbath of the Jains. When the Jain’s sabbath is observed like this it’s not very fruitful or beneficial or splendid or bountiful.

And what is the sabbath of the noble ones? A corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort. And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the Realized One: ‘That Blessed One is perfected, a fully awakened Buddha, accomplished in knowledge and conduct, holy, knower of the world, supreme guide for those who wish to train, teacher of gods and humans, awakened, blessed.’ As they recollect the Realized One, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. It’s just like cleaning a dirty head by applying effort.

And how is a dirty head cleaned by applying effort? With cleansing paste, clay, and water, and by applying the appropriate effort. In the same way, a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the Realized One: ‘That Blessed One is perfected, a fully awakened Buddha, accomplished in knowledge and conduct, holy, knower of the world, supreme guide for those who wish to train, teacher of gods and humans, awakened, blessed.’ As they recollect the Realized One, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. This is called: ‘A noble disciple who observes the sabbath of Brahmā, living together with Brahmā. And because they think of Brahmā their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up.’ That’s how a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

A corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort. And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the teaching: ‘The teaching is well explained by the Buddha—apparent in the present life, immediately effective, inviting inspection, relevant, so that sensible people can know it for themselves.’ As they recollect the teaching, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. It’s just like cleaning a dirty body by applying effort.

And how is a dirty body cleaned by applying effort? With cleanser and powder, water, and by applying the appropriate effort. That’s how a dirty body is cleaned by applying effort. In the same way, a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the teaching: ‘The teaching is well explained by the Buddha—apparent in the present life, immediately effective, inviting inspection, relevant, so that sensible people can know it for themselves.’ As they recollect the teaching, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. This is called: ‘A noble disciple who observes the sabbath of Dhamma, living together with Dhamma. And because they think of the Dhamma their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up.’ That’s how a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

A corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort. And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the Saṅgha: ‘The Saṅgha of the Buddha’s disciples is practicing the way that’s good, direct, systematic, and proper. It consists of the four pairs, the eight individuals. This is the Saṅgha of the Buddha’s disciples that is worthy of offerings dedicated to the gods, worthy of hospitality, worthy of a religious donation, worthy of greeting with joined palms, and is the supreme field of merit for the world.’ As they recollect the Saṅgha, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. It’s just like cleaning a dirty cloth by applying effort.

And how is a dirty cloth cleaned by applying effort? With salt, lye, cow dung, and water, and by applying the appropriate effort. That’s how a dirty cloth is cleaned by applying effort. In the same way, a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the Saṅgha: ‘The Saṅgha of the Buddha’s disciples is practicing the way that’s good, direct, systematic, and proper. It consists of the four pairs, the eight individuals. This Saṅgha of the Buddha’s disciples is worthy of offerings dedicated to the gods, worthy of hospitality, worthy of a religious donation, and worthy of veneration with joined palms. It is the supreme field of merit for the world.’ As they recollect the Saṅgha, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. This is called: ‘A noble disciple who observes the sabbath of the Saṅgha, living together with the Saṅgha. And because they think of the Saṅgha their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up.’ That’s how a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

A corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort. And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects their own ethical conduct, which is unbroken, impeccable, spotless, and unmarred, liberating, praised by sensible people, not mistaken, and leading to immersion. As they recollect their ethical conduct, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. It’s just like cleaning a dirty mirror by applying effort.

And how is a dirty mirror cleaned by applying effort? With oil, ash, a rolled-up cloth, and by applying the appropriate effort. That’s how a dirty mirror is cleaned by applying effort. In the same way, a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects their own ethical conduct, which is unbroken, impeccable, spotless, and unmarred, liberating, praised by sensible people, not mistaken, and leading to immersion. As they recollect their ethical conduct, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. This is called: ‘A noble disciple who observes the sabbath of ethical conduct, living together with ethics. And because they think of their ethical conduct their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up.’ That’s how a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

A corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort. And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the deities: ‘There are the Gods of the Four Great Kings, the Gods of the Thirty-Three, the Gods of Yama, the Joyful Gods, the Gods Who Love to Create, the Gods Who Control the Creations of Others, the Gods of Brahmā’s Host, and gods even higher than these. When those deities passed away from here, they were reborn there because of their faith, ethics, learning, generosity, and wisdom. I, too, have the same kind of faith, ethics, learning, generosity, and wisdom.’ As they recollect the faith, ethics, learning, generosity, and wisdom of both themselves and those deities, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. It’s just like cleaning dirty gold by applying effort.

And how is dirty gold cleaned by applying effort? With a furnace, flux, a blowpipe, and tongs, and by applying the appropriate effort. That’s how dirty gold is cleaned by applying effort. In the same way, a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

And how is a corrupt mind cleaned by applying effort? It’s when a noble disciple recollects the deities: ‘There are the Gods of the Four Great Kings, the Gods of the Thirty-Three, the Gods of Yama, the Joyful Gods, the Gods Who Love to Create, the Gods Who Control the Creations of Others, the Gods of Brahmā’s Host, and gods even higher than these. When those deities passed away from here, they were reborn there because of their faith, ethics, learning, generosity, and wisdom. I, too, have the same kind of faith, ethics, learning, generosity, and wisdom.’ As they recollect the faith, ethics, learning, generosity, and wisdom of both themselves and those deities, their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up. This is called: ‘A noble disciple who observes the sabbath of the deities, living together with the deities. And because they think of the deities their mind becomes clear, joy arises, and mental corruptions are given up.’ That’s how a corrupt mind is cleaned by applying effort.

Then that noble disciple reflects: ‘As long as they live, the perfected ones give up killing living creatures, renouncing the rod and the sword. They are scrupulous and kind, and live full of compassion for all living beings. I, too, for this day and night will give up killing living creatures, renouncing the rod and the sword. I’ll be scrupulous and kind, and live full of compassion for all living beings. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones give up stealing. They take only what’s given, and expect only what’s given. They keep themselves clean by not thieving. I, too, for this day and night will give up stealing. I’ll take only what’s given, and expect only what’s given. I’ll keep myself clean by not thieving. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones give up unchastity. They are celibate, set apart, avoiding the vulgar act of sex. I, too, for this day and night will give up unchastity. I will be celibate, set apart, avoiding the vulgar act of sex. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones give up lying. They speak the truth and stick to the truth. They’re honest and trustworthy, and don’t trick the world with their words. I, too, for this day and night will give up lying. I’ll speak the truth and stick to the truth. I’ll be honest and trustworthy, and won’t trick the world with my words. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones give up alcoholic drinks that cause negligence. I, too, for this day and night will give up alcoholic drinks that cause negligence. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones eat in one part of the day, abstaining from eating at night and from food at the wrong time. I, too, for this day and night will eat in one part of the day, abstaining from eating at night and food at the wrong time. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones avoid seeing shows of dancing, singing, and music ; and beautifying and adorning themselves with garlands, fragrance, and makeup. I, too, for this day and night will avoid seeing shows of dancing, singing, and music ; and beautifying and adorning myself with garlands, fragrance, and makeup. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.

As long as they live, the perfected ones give up high and luxurious beds. They sleep in a low place, either a cot or a straw mat. I, too, for this day and night will give up high and luxurious beds. I’ll sleep in a low place, either a cot or a straw mat. I will observe the sabbath by doing as the perfected ones do in this respect.’

That’s the sabbath of the noble ones. When the sabbath of the noble ones is observed like this it’s very fruitful and beneficial and splendid and bountiful.

How much so? Suppose you were to rule as sovereign lord over these sixteen great countries—Aṅga, Magadha, Kāsi, Kosala, Vajji, Malla, Cetī, Vaccha, Kuru, Pañcāla, Maccha, Sūrasena, Assaka, Avanti, Gandhāra, and Kamboja—full of the seven treasures. This wouldn’t be worth a sixteenth part of the sabbath with its eight factors. Why is that? Because human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.

Fifty years in the human realm is one day and night for the gods of the Four Great Kings. Thirty such days make up a month. Twelve such months make up a year. The life span of the gods of the Four Great Kings is five hundred of these divine years. It’s possible that a woman or man who has observed the eight-factored sabbath will—when their body breaks up, after death—be reborn in the company of the gods of the Four Great Kings. This is what I was referring to when I said: ‘Human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.’

A hundred years in the human realm is one day and night for the Gods of the Thirty-Three. Thirty such days make up a month. Twelve such months make up a year. The life span of the Gods of the Thirty-Three is a thousand of these divine years. It’s possible that a woman or man who has observed the eight-factored sabbath will—when their body breaks up, after death—be reborn in the company of the Gods of the Thirty-Three. This is what I was referring to when I said: ‘Human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.’

Two hundred years in the human realm is one day and night for the Gods of Yama. Thirty such days make up a month. Twelve such months make up a year. The life span of the Gods of Yama is two thousand of these divine years. It’s possible that a woman or man who has observed the eight-factored sabbath will—when their body breaks up, after death—be reborn in the company of the Gods of Yama. This is what I was referring to when I said: ‘Human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.’

Four hundred years in the human realm is one day and night for the Joyful Gods. Thirty such days make up a month. Twelve such months make up a year. The life span of the Joyful Gods is four thousand of these divine years. It’s possible that a woman or man who has observed the eight-factored sabbath will—when their body breaks up, after death—be reborn in the company of the Joyful Gods. This is what I was referring to when I said: ‘Human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.’

Eight hundred years in the human realm is one day and night for the Gods Who Love to Create. Thirty such days make up a month. Twelve such months make up a year. The life span of the Gods Who Love to Create is eight thousand of these divine years. It’s possible that a woman or man who has observed the eight-factored sabbath will—when their body breaks up, after death—be reborn in the company of the Gods Who Love to Create. This is what I was referring to when I said: ‘Human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.’

Sixteen hundred years in the human realm is one day and night for the Gods Who Control the Creations of Others. Thirty such days make up a month. Twelve such months make up a year. The life span of the Gods Who Control the Creations of Others is sixteen thousand of these divine years. It’s possible that a woman or man who has observed the eight-factored sabbath will—when their body breaks up, after death—be reborn in the company of the Gods Who Control the Creations of Others. This is what I was referring to when I said: ‘Human kingship is a poor thing compared to the happiness of the gods.’

You shouldn’t kill living creatures, or steal,
or lie, or drink alcohol.
Be celibate, refraining from sex,
and don’t eat at night, the wrong time.

Not wearing garlands or applying fragrance,
you should sleep on a low bed,or a mat on the ground.
This is the eight-factored sabbath, they say,
explained by the Buddha,who has gone to suffering’s end.

The moon and sun are both fair to see,
radiating as far as they revolve.
Those shining ones in the sky light up the quarters,
dispelling the darkness as they traverse the heavens.

All of the wealth that’s found in this realm—
pearls, gems, fine beryl too,
rose-gold or pure gold,
or natural gold dug up by marmots—

they’re not worth a sixteenth part
of the sabbath with its eight factors,
as starlight cannot rival the moon.

So an ethical woman or man,
who has observed the eight-factored sabbath,
having made merit whose outcome is happiness,
blameless, they go to a heavenly place.”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 3.70 Uposathasutta: Sabbath by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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AN 9.28 Dutiyaverasutta: Dangers and Threats (2nd)

“Mendicants, when a noble disciple has quelled five dangers and threats, and has the four factors of stream-entry, they may, if they wish, declare of themselves: ‘I’ve finished with rebirth in hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. I’ve finished with all places of loss, bad places, the underworld. I am a stream-enterer! I’m not liable to be reborn in the underworld, and am bound for awakening.’

What are the five dangers and threats they have quelled? Anyone who kills living creatures creates dangers and threats both in the present life and in lives to come, and experiences mental pain and sadness. Anyone who refrains from killing living creatures creates no dangers and threats either in the present life or in lives to come, and doesn’t experience mental pain and sadness. So that danger and threat is quelled for anyone who refrains from killing living creatures.

Anyone who steals … commits sexual misconduct … lies … Anyone who uses alcoholic drinks that cause negligence creates dangers and threats both in the present life and in lives to come, and experiences mental pain and sadness. Anyone who refrains from using alcoholic drinks that cause negligence creates no dangers and threats either in the present life or in lives to come, and doesn’t experience mental pain and sadness. So that danger and threat is quelled for anyone who refrains from using alcoholic drinks that cause negligence. These are the five dangers and threats they have quelled.

What are the four factors of stream-entry that they have? When a noble disciple has experiential confidence in the Buddha … the teaching … the Saṅgha … And a noble disciple’s ethical conduct is loved by the noble ones, unbroken, impeccable, spotless, and unmarred, liberating, praised by sensible people, not mistaken, and leading to immersion. These are the four factors of stream-entry that they have.

When a noble disciple has quelled these five dangers and threats, and has these four factors of stream-entry, they may, if they wish, declare of themselves: ‘I’ve finished with rebirth in hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. I’ve finished with all places of loss, bad places, the underworld. I am a stream-enterer! I’m not liable to be reborn in the underworld, and am bound for awakening.’”


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AN 3.118 Apaṇṇakasutta: Unfailing Dice

“Mendicants, there are three failures. What three? Failure in ethics, mind, and view.

And what is failure in ethics? It’s when someone kills living creatures, steals, commits sexual misconduct, and uses speech that’s false, divisive, harsh, or nonsensical. This is called ‘failure in ethics’.

And what is failure in mind? It’s when someone is covetous and malicious. This is called ‘failure in mind’.

And what is failure in view? It’s when someone has wrong view, a distorted perspective, such as: ‘There’s no meaning in giving, sacrifice, or offerings. There’s no fruit or result of good and bad deeds. There’s no afterlife. There’s no such thing as mother and father, or beings that are reborn spontaneously. And there’s no ascetic or brahmin who is rightly comported and rightly practiced, and who describes the afterlife after realizing it with their own insight.’ This is called ‘failure in view’. Some sentient beings, when their body breaks up, after death, are reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell because of failure in ethics, mind, or view. It’s like throwing unfailing dice: they always fall the right side up. In the same way, some sentient beings, when their body breaks up, after death, are reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell because of failure in ethics, mind, or view.

These are the three failures.

There are three accomplishments. What three? Accomplishment in ethics, mind, and view.

And what is accomplishment in ethics? It’s when someone doesn’t kill living creatures, steal, commit sexual misconduct, or use speech that’s false, divisive, harsh, or nonsensical. This is called accomplishment in ethics.

And what is accomplishment in mind? It’s when someone is content and kind-hearted. This is called accomplishment in mind.

And what is accomplishment in view? It’s when someone has right view, an undistorted perspective, such as: ‘There is meaning in giving, sacrifice, and offerings. There are fruits and results of good and bad deeds. There is an afterlife. There are such things as mother and father, and beings that are reborn spontaneously. And there are ascetics and brahmins who are rightly comported and rightly practiced, and who describe the afterlife after realizing it with their own insight.’ This is called accomplishment in view. Some sentient beings, when their body breaks up, after death, are reborn in a good place, a heavenly realm because of accomplishment in ethics, mind, or view. It’s like throwing unfailing dice: they always fall the right side up. In the same way, some sentient beings, when their body breaks up, after death, are reborn in a good place, a heavenly realm because of accomplishment in ethics, mind, or view.

These are the three accomplishments.”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 3.118 Apaṇṇakasutta: Unfailing Dice by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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AN 7.60 Sattadhammasutta: Seven Qualities

“Mendicants, a mendicant with seven qualities soon realizes the supreme culmination of the spiritual path in this very life. They live having achieved with their own insight the goal for which gentlemen rightly go forth from the lay life to homelessness. What seven? It’s when a mendicant is faithful, ethical, learned, secluded, energetic, mindful, and wise. A mendicant with these seven qualities soon realizes the supreme culmination of the spiritual path in this very life. They live having achieved with their own insight the goal for which gentlemen rightly go forth from the lay life to homelessness.”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 7.60 Sattadhammasutta: Seven Qualities by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on AccessToInsight.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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Ud 8.6 Pāṭaligāmiyasutta: The Layfolk of Pāṭali Village

[NOTE: The first half of this sutta is most relevant to this month’s topic, but the entire sutta is included for those who have time to read.]

So I have heard. At one time the Buddha was wandering in the land of the Magadhans together with a large Saṅgha of mendicants when he arrived at the village of Pāṭali. The lay followers of Pāṭali Village heard that he had arrived. So they went to see him, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him, “Sir, please consent to come to our guest house.” The Buddha consented with silence.

Then, knowing that the Buddha had consented, the lay followers of Pāṭali Village got up from their seat, bowed, and respectfully circled the Buddha, keeping him on their right. Then they went to the guest house, where they spread carpets all over, prepared seats, set up a water jar, and placed an oil lamp. Then they went back to the Buddha, bowed, stood to one side, and told him of their preparations, saying: “Please, sir, come at your convenience.”

In the morning, the Buddha robed up and, taking his bowl and robe, went to the guest house together with the Saṅgha of mendicants. Having washed his feet he entered the guest house and sat against the central column facing east. The Saṅgha of mendicants also washed their feet, entered the guest house, and sat against the west wall facing east, with the Buddha right in front of them. The lay followers of Pāṭali Village also washed their feet, entered the guest house, and sat against the east wall facing west, with the Buddha right in front of them. Then the Buddha addressed them:

“Householders, there are these five drawbacks for an unethical person because of their failure in ethics. What five? Firstly, an unethical person loses substantial wealth on account of negligence. This is the first drawback.

Furthermore, an unethical person gets a bad reputation. This is the second drawback.

Furthermore, an unethical person enters any kind of assembly timid and embarrassed, whether it’s an assembly of aristocrats, brahmins, householders, or ascetics. This is the third drawback.

Furthermore, an unethical person feels lost when they die. This is the fourth drawback.

Furthermore, an unethical person, when their body breaks up, after death, is reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell. This is the fifth drawback. These are the five drawbacks for an unethical person because of their failure in ethics.

There are these five benefits for an ethical person because of their accomplishment in ethics. What five? Firstly, an ethical person gains substantial wealth on account of diligence. This is the first benefit.

Furthermore, an ethical person gets a good reputation. This is the second benefit.

Furthermore, an ethical person enters any kind of assembly bold and self-assured, whether it’s an assembly of aristocrats, brahmins, householders, or ascetics. This is the third benefit.

Furthermore, an ethical person dies not feeling lost. This is the fourth benefit.

Furthermore, when an ethical person’s body breaks up, after death, they’re reborn in a good place, a heavenly realm. This is the fifth benefit. These are the five benefits for an ethical person because of their accomplishment in ethics.”

The Buddha spent much of the night educating, encouraging, firing up, and inspiring the lay followers of Pāṭali Village with a Dhamma talk. Then he dismissed them, “The night is getting late, householders. Please go at your convenience.” And then the lay followers of Pāṭali Village approved and agreed with what the Buddha said. They got up from their seat, bowed, and respectfully circled the Buddha, keeping him on their right, before leaving. Soon after they left the Buddha entered a private cubicle.

Now at that time the Magadhan ministers Sunidha and Vassakāra were building a citadel at Pāṭali Village to keep the Vajjis out. At that time thousands of deities were taking possession of building sites in Pāṭali Village. Illustrious rulers or royal ministers inclined to build houses at sites possessed by illustrious deities. Middling rulers or royal ministers inclined to build houses at sites possessed by middling deities. Lesser rulers or royal ministers inclined to build houses at sites possessed by lesser deities.

With clairvoyance that is purified and superhuman, the Buddha saw those deities taking possession of building sites in Pāṭali Village, and the people building houses in accord with the station of the deities. The Buddha rose at the crack of dawn and addressed Ānanda,

“Ānanda, who is building a citadel at Pāṭali Village?” “Sir, the Magadhan ministers Sunidha and Vassakāra are building a citadel to keep the Vajjis out.” “It’s as if they were building the citadel in consultation with the gods of the Thirty-Three. With clairvoyance that is purified and superhuman, I saw those deities taking possession of building sites. Illustrious rulers or royal ministers inclined to build houses at sites possessed by illustrious deities. Middling rulers or royal ministers inclined to build houses at sites possessed by middling deities. Lesser rulers or royal ministers inclined to build houses at sites possessed by lesser deities. As far as the civilized region extends, as far as the trading zone extends, this will be the chief city: the Pāṭaliputta trade center. But Pāṭaliputta will face three threats: from fire, flood, and dissension.”

Then the Magadhan ministers Sunidha and Vassakāra approached the Buddha, and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, they stood to one side and said, “Would Master Gotama together with the mendicant Saṅgha please accept today’s meal from me?”

Then, knowing that the Buddha had consented, they went to their own guest house, where they had delicious fresh and cooked foods prepared. Then they had the Buddha informed of the time, saying, “It’s time, Master Gotama, the meal is ready.”

Then the Buddha robed up in the morning and, taking his bowl and robe, went to their guest house together with the mendicant Saṅgha, where he sat on the seat spread out. Then Sunidha and Vassakāra served and satisfied the mendicant Saṅgha headed by the Buddha with their own hands with delicious fresh and cooked foods.

When the Buddha had eaten and washed his hand and bowl, Sunidha and Vassakāra took a low seat and sat to one side. The Buddha expressed his appreciation with these verses:

“In the place he makes his dwelling,
having fed the astute
and the virtuous here,
the restrained spiritual practitioners,

he should dedicate an offering
to the deities there.
Venerated, they venerate him;
honored, they honor him.

After that they have compassion for him,
like a mother for the child at her breast.
A man beloved of the deities
always sees nice things.”

When the Buddha had expressed his appreciation to Sunidha and Vassakāra with these verses, he got up from his seat and left.

Sunidha and Vassakāra followed behind the Buddha, thinking, “The gate through which the ascetic Gotama departs today shall be named the Gotama Gate. The ford at which he crosses the Ganges River shall be named the Gotama Ford.”

Then the gate through which the Buddha departed was named the Gotama Gate. Then the Buddha came to the Ganges River. Now at that time the Ganges was full to the brim so a crow could drink from it. Wanting to cross from the near to the far shore, some people were seeking a boat, some a dinghy, while some were tying up a raft. But, as easily as a strong person would extend or contract their arm, the Buddha, together with the mendicant Saṅgha, vanished from the near shore and landed on the far shore.

He saw all those people wanting to cross over.

Then, understanding this matter, on that occasion the Buddha expressed this heartfelt sentiment:

“Those who cross a deluge or stream
have built a bridge and left the marshes behind.
While some people are still tying a raft,
intelligent people have crossed over.”



Read this translation of Udāna 8.6 Pāṭaligāmiyasutta: The Layfolk of Pāṭali Village by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on DhammaTalks.org or Ancient-Buddhist-Texts.net. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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AN 8.81 Satisampajaññasutta: Mindfulness and Situational Awareness

“Mendicants, when there is no mindfulness and situational awareness, one who lacks mindfulness and situational awareness has destroyed a vital condition for conscience and prudence. When there is no conscience and prudence, one who lacks conscience and prudence has destroyed a vital condition for sense restraint. When there is no sense restraint, one who lacks sense restraint has destroyed a vital condition for ethical conduct. When there is no ethical conduct, one who lacks ethics has destroyed a vital condition for right immersion. When there is no right immersion, one who lacks right immersion has destroyed a vital condition for true knowledge and vision. When there is no true knowledge and vision, one who lacks true knowledge and vision has destroyed a vital condition for disillusionment and dispassion. When there is no disillusionment and dispassion, one who lacks disillusionment and dispassion has destroyed a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.

Suppose there was a tree that lacked branches and foliage. Its shoots, bark, softwood, and heartwood would not grow to fullness.

In the same way, when there is no mindfulness and situational awareness, one who lacks mindfulness and situational awareness has destroyed a vital condition for conscience and prudence. When there is no conscience and prudence … One who lacks disillusionment and dispassion has destroyed a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.

When there is mindfulness and situational awareness, one who has fulfilled mindfulness and situational awareness has fulfilled a vital condition for conscience and prudence. When there is conscience and prudence, a person who has fulfilled conscience and prudence has fulfilled a vital condition for sense restraint. When there is sense restraint, one who has sense restraint has fulfilled a vital condition for ethical conduct. When there is ethical conduct, one who has fulfilled ethical conduct has fulfilled a vital condition for right immersion. When there is right immersion, one who has fulfilled right immersion has fulfilled a vital condition for true knowledge and vision. When there is true knowledge and vision, one who has fulfilled true knowledge and vision has fulfilled a vital condition for disillusionment and dispassion. When there is disillusionment and dispassion, one who has fulfilled disillusionment and dispassion has fulfilled a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.

Suppose there was a tree that was complete with branches and foliage. Its shoots, bark, softwood, and heartwood would grow to fullness.

In the same way, when there is mindfulness and situational awareness, one who has fulfilled mindfulness and situational awareness has fulfilled a vital condition for conscience and prudence. When there is conscience and prudence … One who has fulfilled disillusionment and dispassion has fulfilled a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 8.81 Satisampajaññasutta: Mindfulness and Situational Awareness by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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AN 6.10 From… Mahānāmasutta: With Mahānāma

…Furthermore, a noble disciple recollects their own ethical conduct, which is unbroken, impeccable, spotless, and unmarred, liberating, praised by sensible people, not mistaken, and leading to immersion. When a noble disciple recollects their ethical conduct their mind is not full of greed, hate, and delusion. At that time their mind is unswerving, based on the Realized One. A noble disciple whose mind is unswerving finds inspiration in the meaning and the teaching, and finds joy connected with the teaching. When they’re joyful, rapture springs up. When the mind is full of rapture, the body becomes tranquil. When the body is tranquil, they feel bliss. And when they’re blissful, the mind becomes immersed in samādhi. This is called a noble disciple who lives in balance among people who are unbalanced, and lives untroubled among people who are troubled. They’ve entered the stream of the teaching and develop the recollection of ethics.…


Read the entire translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 6.10 Mahānāmasutta: With Mahānāma by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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Iti 97 Kalyāṇasīlasutta: Good Morals

This was said by the Buddha, the Perfected One: that is what I heard.

“Mendicants, in this teaching and training a mendicant of good morals, good practice, and good wisdom is called consummate, accomplished, a supreme person.

And how does a mendicant have good morals? It’s when a mendicant is ethical, restrained in the monastic code, conducting themselves well and seeking alms in suitable places. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken. That’s how a mendicant has good morals. Such is one of good morality.

And how does one have good practice? It’s when a mendicant meditates pursuing the development of the seven qualities that lead to awakening. That’s how a mendicant has good practice. Such is one of good morality and good practice.

And how does one have good wisdom? It’s when a mendicant realizes the undefiled freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom in this very life. And they live having realized it with their own insight due to the ending of defilements. That’s how a mendicant has good wisdom;

Such is one of good morals, good practice, and good wisdom, who in this teaching and training is called consummate, accomplished, a supreme person.”

The Buddha spoke this matter. On this it is said:

“Who does nothing wrong
by body, speech or mind,
is said to be one good morals,
a conscientious mendicant.

Who has well developed the seven
factors that lead to awakening
is said to be one good practice,
a humble mendicant.

Who understands for themselves
the end of suffering in this life
is said to be one good wisdom,
an undefiled mendicant.

One accomplished in these three things,
untroubled, with doubts cut off,
unattached to anything in the world,
has given up everything, they say.”

This too is a matter that was spoken by the Blessed One: that is what I heard.


Read this translation of Itivuttaka 97 Kalyāṇasīlasutta: Good Morals by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaCentral.net, SuttaFriends.org or DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on SC-Voice.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.

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