Help Requested: Sutta Search

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Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby sukhamanveti » Sat May 29, 2010 2:10 am

Hi, all.

I am looking for the sutta in which the Buddha says that it was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks. I know that it exists (even though it may take some thought to harmonize it with the Vinaya account of the founding of the order of nuns). I have read it. I believe that it is in the Majjhima Nikaya, if memory serves. It is taking me much longer than expected to find it. I do not have in mind the similar passage in the Mahaparinibbana Sutta of the Digha Nikaya in which the Buddha says that he will not pass on until he has monks, nuns, and laity who are well-trained and accomplished. This is much earlier chronologically.

Thank you much to anyone who is familiar with this discourse and willing to help out! :smile:

Ed
Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby Sobeh » Sat May 29, 2010 2:32 am

Per Bhikkhu Bodhi's paper:

Another passage, less well known, comes from the Mahāvacchagotta Sutta (MN 73). In this discourse, the wanderer Vacchagotta has been asking the Buddha whether he alone has achieved realization of the Dhamma or whether he has disciples who have also achieved realization. The wanderer inquires in turn about each class of disciple: bhikkhus, bhikkhunīs, celibate male householders, non-celibate male householders, celibate female householders, and non-celibate female householders. With each inquiry, the Buddha confirms that he has "not merely five hundred, but many more disciples than that" who have attained the highest realization appropriate to their particular status. When the questioning is finished, Vacchagotta exclaims, in words with which the Buddha himself would surely have agreed: "If the Venerable Gotama (the Buddha) had attained success in this Dhamma, and if there were bhikkhus who had attained success, but there were no bhikkhunīs who had attained success in this Dhamma, then this spiritual life would be incomplete with respect to this factor. But because, besides the Venerable Gotama and the bhikkhus, there are also bhikkhunīs who have attained success, this spiritual life is complete with respect to this factor." For bhikkhunīs the highest success is arahantship, the same as for the bhikkhus.
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby sukhamanveti » Sat May 29, 2010 3:01 am

Thank you, Sobeh!

That must be the one. I remember it slightly differently, but my memory isn't what it used to be. Apparently, "I too am subject to old age." :)

Best regards.

Ed
Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby Zom » Sat May 29, 2010 7:30 pm

I am looking for the sutta in which the Buddha says that it was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks.


This sutta doesn't say that "it was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks". :reading:
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby sukhamanveti » Sun May 30, 2010 4:04 pm

Hi, Zom.

Zom wrote:
I am looking for the sutta in which the Buddha says that it was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks.


This sutta doesn't say that "it was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks". :reading:


True, but that's the closest thing to what I remember that I've seen to date. As I told Sobeh, "I remember it slightly differently, but my memory isn't what it used to be." I'm guessing that my memory is playing tricks on me. If I find exactly what I remember, I'll be sure to post it here. Until then, I guess I was mistaken.

Best regards.

Ed
Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby Sobeh » Sun May 30, 2010 5:12 pm

The reason I also gave the link to Bhikkhu Bodhi's paper is that he collects other bhikkhuni references therein, and it seems comprehensive. Check there for hints to where else you might find the passage you are thinking of - the one I copied was the only one out of the Majjhima, so it seemed appropriate, but please use the link just in case.

:shrug:
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby sukhamanveti » Mon May 31, 2010 9:33 pm

Sobeh wrote:The reason I also gave the link to Bhikkhu Bodhi's paper is that he collects other bhikkhuni references therein, and it seems comprehensive. Check there for hints to where else you might find the passage you are thinking of - the one I copied was the only one out of the Majjhima, so it seemed appropriate, but please use the link just in case.

:shrug:


Thank you, Sobeh. I will do so. I just now downloaded the document.

Best regards.
Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby retrofuturist » Mon May 31, 2010 11:49 pm

Greetings sukhamanveti,

Yes, I think that if the source were as you remembered it, it would certainly have been found and popularised in these present times when reinstatement of the bhikkhuni order is such a topical issue.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:00 am

retrofuturist wrote:Yes, I think that if the source were as you remembered it, it would certainly have been found and popularised in these present times when reinstatement of the bhikkhuni order is such a topical issue.


I believe I have heard some advocates of Bhikkhuni reinstatement interpret the following passage from the Mahaparinibbana Sutta as evidence that "... it was [the Buddha's] intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .vaji.html
7. And when the Venerable Ananda had gone away, Mara, the Evil One, approached the Blessed One. And standing at one side he spoke to the Blessed One, saying: "Now, O Lord, let the Blessed One come to his final passing away; let the Happy One utterly pass away! The time has come for the Parinibbana of the Lord.

"For the Blessed One, O Lord, spoke these words to me: 'I shall not come to my final passing away, Evil One, until my bhikkhus and bhikkhunis, laymen and laywomen, have come to be true disciples — wise, well disciplined, apt and learned, preservers of the Dhamma, living according to the Dhamma, abiding by the appropriate conduct, and having learned the Master's word, are able to expound it, preach it, proclaim it, establish it, reveal it, explain it in detail, and make it clear; until, when adverse opinions arise, they shall be able to refute them thoroughly and well, and to preach this convincing and liberating Dhamma.'

8. "And now, O Lord, bhikkhus and bhikkhunis, laymen and laywomen, have become the Blessed One's disciples in just this way. So, O Lord, let the Blessed One come to his final passing away! The time has come for the Parinibbana of the Lord.


Mike
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby sukhamanveti » Tue Jun 01, 2010 3:46 am

mikenz66 wrote:
retrofuturist wrote:Yes, I think that if the source were as you remembered it, it would certainly have been found and popularised in these present times when reinstatement of the bhikkhuni order is such a topical issue.


I believe I have heard some advocates of Bhikkhuni reinstatement interpret the following passage from the Mahaparinibbana Sutta as evidence that "... it was [the Buddha's] intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks."
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .vaji.html
7. And when the Venerable Ananda had gone away, Mara, the Evil One, approached the Blessed One. And standing at one side he spoke to the Blessed One, saying: "Now, O Lord, let the Blessed One come to his final passing away; let the Happy One utterly pass away! The time has come for the Parinibbana of the Lord.

"For the Blessed One, O Lord, spoke these words to me: 'I shall not come to my final passing away, Evil One, until my bhikkhus and bhikkhunis, laymen and laywomen, have come to be true disciples — wise, well disciplined, apt and learned, preservers of the Dhamma, living according to the Dhamma, abiding by the appropriate conduct, and having learned the Master's word, are able to expound it, preach it, proclaim it, establish it, reveal it, explain it in detail, and make it clear; until, when adverse opinions arise, they shall be able to refute them thoroughly and well, and to preach this convincing and liberating Dhamma.'

8. "And now, O Lord, bhikkhus and bhikkhunis, laymen and laywomen, have become the Blessed One's disciples in just this way. So, O Lord, let the Blessed One come to his final passing away! The time has come for the Parinibbana of the Lord.


Mike



Mike,

You are exactly right! I have confirmation. But that isn't the only relevant passage in the Pali Canon it turns out. There are several.

In DN 16.3.7 Mara says that the Buddha once told him that he wouldn't pass on until he had well-trained nuns (etc.). This invites the question, "When did the Buddha tell Mara this?" In the essay "Women's Renunciation in Early Buddhism: The Four Assemblies and the Foundation of the Order of Nuns" (in the book Dignity and Discipline, edited by Thea Mohr and Jampa Tsedroen) Ven. Analayo points to an early tradition (in the Sanghabedavastu of the Mula-sarvastivada Vinaya) that this occurred "when the Buddha had been afflicted by disease after partaking of his first meal after awakening." Analayo concludes that the "implication of this passage, preserved in each of the major Buddhist languages and by a range of different Buddhist schools, would be that soon after his awakening the Buddha had decided to establish an order of nuns."

Furthermore he suggests, "From the perspective of the Buddhavamsa, a later work in the Theravada canon, this is not at all surprising, since other past buddhas also had nun disciples. From this it would follow that for a Buddha to establish an order of nuns is a natural course of events." Ven. Analayo also points out that the Buddha teaches in DN 29 (Pasadika Sutta) that the Buddha's teaching is successful or the holy life is complete only if his disciples include monks, nuns, and laity at all levels of training. (See especially DN 29.12-13. In Walshe's translation: "In such cases, if there are such senior teachers, and such senior disciples, but... no senior disciples among the nuns,... no middle ranking or junior nuns... then the holy life is not perfected. If, however, all of these conditions are fulfilled, then the holy life is perfected.") This is the passage that is most significant to me.

Ed
Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Jun 01, 2010 6:45 am

Greetings Ed,

For what it's worth, it doesn't sound like "confirmation" to me.

To me it reads more that he didn't want to leave behind an unruly, unworthy and unknowledgeable Sangha, rather than it "was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks".

Whether you take the Buddhavamsa as a relevant authority, that's for you to decide.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: Help Requested: Sutta Search

Postby sukhamanveti » Tue Jun 01, 2010 7:45 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Ed,

For what it's worth, it doesn't sound like "confirmation" to me.

To me it reads more that he didn't want to leave behind an unruly, unworthy and unknowledgeable Sangha, rather than it "was his intention from the beginning to establish orders of both nuns and monks".

Whether you take the Buddhavamsa as a relevant authority, that's for you to decide.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Hi, Retro.

You may be right. On the other hand, a Chinese version of the Pasadika Sutta in the Agamas simply says that, according to the Buddha, the holy life would be incomplete if monks, nuns, laymen or laywomen were absent from among the disciples. All talk of levels is omitted in the Chinese version, as Ven. Analyo mentions. I suspect that this simpler version is the earlier one and that the talk of levels is a later elaboration. If this is so, then nuns are necessary for the holy life to be complete, according to the Buddha in this discourse, and the Buddha is agreeing with the statement that Vacchagotta made in MN 73.

Ed
Sīlaṃ balaṃ appaṭimaṃ.
Sīlaṃ āvudhamuttamaṃ.
Sīlamābharaṇaṃ seṭṭhaṃ.
Sīlaṃ kavacamabbhutaṃ.


Virtue is a matchless power.
Virtue is the greatest weapon.
Virtue is the best adornment.
Virtue is a wonderful armor.

Theragatha 614


Sabbapāpassa akaraṇaṃ,
kusalassa upasampadā,
Sacittapariyodapanaṃ,
etaṃ buddhāna sāsanaṃ.


Refraining from all wrong-doing,
Undertaking the good,
Purifying the mind,
This is the teaching of the buddhas.

Dhammapada v. 183/14.5
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