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International Early Birds Brotherhood Multipurpose Cooperative Society(IEBBMCS) For The Welfare and Ultimate Bliss of Entire Mighty Great Minds-B Media 4 UR Own Idea for the Path Shown by the Blessed, Noble, Awakened Mighty Great Mind !Truely Followed by Baba saheb and Dada Saheb who Entered the Pure Land !And Strived to lead all Sentient beings to that Wonder Land !
Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 10:54 pm

International Early Birds Brotherhood Multipurpose Cooperative Society

(IEBBMCS)

For

The Welfare and Ultimate Bliss of Entire Mighty Great Minds



The Blessed, Noble,Awakened Mighty Great Mind once said, ‘When the ruler of a country is just and good, the ministers become just and good; when the ministers are just and good, the higher officials become just and good; when the higher officials are just and good, the rank and file become just and good; when the rank and file become just and good, the people become just and good.


He said that immorality and crime, such as theft, falsehood, violence, hatred, cruelty, could arise from poverty. Kings and governments may try to suppress crime through punishment, but it is futile to eradicate crimes through force.

He suggested economic development instead of force to reduce crime. The government should use the country’s resources to improve the economic conditions of the country. It could embark on agricultural and rural development, provide financial support to entrepreneurs and business, provide adequate wages for workers to maintain a decent life with human dignity.

He had given to rules for Good Government, known as ‘Dasa Raja Dharma’. These ten rules can be applied even today by any government which wishes to rule the country peacefully. The rules are as follows:

1) be liberal and avoid selfishness,
2) maintain a high moral character,
3) be prepared to sacrifice one’s own pleasure for the well-being of the subjects,
4) be honest and maintain absolute integrity,
5) be kind and gentle,
6) lead a simple life for the subjects to emulate,
7) be free from hatred of any kind,
8) exercise non-violence,
9) practise patience, and
10) respect public opinion to promote peace and harmony.

Regarding the behavior of rulers, He further advised:

- A good ruler should act impartially and should not be biased and discriminate between one particular group of subjects against another.
- A good ruler should not harbor any form of hatred against any of his subjects.
- A good ruler should show no fear whatsoever in the enforcement of the law, if it is justifiable.
- A good ruler must possess a clear understanding of the law to be enforced. It should not be enforced just because the ruler has the authority to enforce the law. It must be done in a reasonable manner and with common sense. —



 ’If a man, who is unfit, incompetent, immoral, improper, unable and unworthy of kingship, has enthroned himself a king or a ruler with great authority, he is subject to be tortured‚ to be subject to a variety of punishment by the people, because, being unfit and unworthy, he has placed himself unrighteously in the seat of sovereignty. The ruler, like others who violate and transgress moral codes and basic rules of all social laws of mankind, is equally subject to punishment; and moreover, to be censured is the ruler who conducts himself as a robber of the public.’

It is mentioned that a ruler who punishes innocent people and does not punish the culprit is not suitable to rule a country.

The king always improves himself and carefully examines his own conduct in deeds, words and thoughts, trying to discover and listen to public opinion as to whether or not he had been guilty of any faults and mistakes in ruling the kingdom. If it is found that he rules unrighteously, the public will complain that they are ruined by the wicked ruler with unjust treatment, punishment, taxation, or other oppressions including corruption of any kind, and they will react against him in one way or another. On the contrary, if he rules righteously they will bless him: ‘Long live His Majesty.

His emphasis on the moral duty of a ruler to use public power to improve the welfare of the people had inspired Emperor Asoka in the Third Century B.C. to do likewise. Emperor Asoka, a sparkling example of this principle, resolved to live according to and preach the Dhamma and to serve his subjects and all humanity. He declared his non-aggressive intentions to his neighbors, assuring them of his goodwill and sending envoys to distant kings bearing his message of peace and non-aggression. He promoted the energetic practice of the socio-moral virtues of honesty, truthfulness, compassion, benevolence, non-violence, considerate behavior towards all, non-extravagance, non-acquisitiveness, and non-injury to animals. He encouraged religious freedom and mutual respect for each other’s creed. He went on periodic tours preaching the Dhamma to the rural people. He undertook works of public utility, such as founding of hospitals for men and animals, supplying of medicine, planting of roadside trees and groves, digging of wells, and construction of watering sheds and rest houses. He expressly forbade cruelty to animals.

Aims & Objects

To enrol membership for IEBBMCS for the welfare and happiness of all the members in accordance with the Constitution of India through their empowerment by grabbing the master key for distributing the nations wealth to benefit all sections of the society.

Distribution of fertile land to all poor farmers with healthy seeds.

Loan to each and every person who is interested in starting his own business with proper training on latest and most modern successful Trade Practices

To train Government servants to serve the society in a most efficient manner without corruption.

To train members to become leaders for excellent governance.

To train all members on “The Art of Giving” for a happy longevity, beauty, prosperity and Authority.

To create a database of all members with their photos, address, age, and all other necessary information that will serve as Citizens Identity Cards.

To help all members to be in the voters list in order to acquire the Master Key. To strive hard to convert the existing three member Chief Election Commission

as Chief Election Committee, just like any other Parliamentary Committee representing all sections of the society to ensure that all eligible voters in the Country are included in the Voters list with their photo identity for free and fair elections.

To help all members to get genuine Caste Certificates.

To train all members to become media to propagate peace within oneself and harmony with others.

To train all members on the latest trade practices to make them to earn more money for the wholesome desire of propagating the Practicing and the Noble  Right path shown by the Blessed, Noble and the Awakened One.

To train and cultivate the habit of early birds

To practice and train on the essential movements of the body, including walking, cycling and swimming for fitness

To practice and train to buy essential qualitative and most economic household articles and commodities

To train to cultivate the best food habits

To train to cultivate the ten disciplines for happy and peaceful life

Through the practice of Noble Eightfold Path

To train to practice meditation such as Pabajja, Vipassana and Zen practice for peace and happiness within oneself and harmony with others to enable to become Great Minds in order to attain the Ultimate Bliss

To enroll minimum two members per street for cultivation of the practice by way of training

Membership Minimum Rs.200 ($100) up to 25% and above of one’s net profit.

Cash or money orders may be sent to

J.Chandrasekharan

#668 5th A Main Road , 8th Cross

HAL 3rd Stage

Bangalore-560075

Ph.No.91-080- 25203792

Mob: 9449260443

email:welfareforman y@yahoo.com

http://sarvajan. ambedkar. org

B Media 4 UR Own Idea

4 Mighty Great Mind !

2 Enter the Wonder Land !

That’s the Pure Land !

Path Shown by the Blessed, Noble, Awakened Mighty Great Mind !

Truely Followed by Baba saheb and Dada Saheb who Entered the Pure Land !

And Strived to lead all Sentient beings to that Wonder Land !

Without becoming Prime Minister or President of any Land !

Now is all that U have in Hand !

Ms Maya leading one and all to that Wonder Land !

That’s the Pure Land !

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Blessed, Noble and the Awakened Magnificient, Mighty Great Mind or Karl Marx-International Early Birds Brotherhood Multipurpose Cooperative Society(IEBBMCS) For The Welfare and Ultimate Bliss of Entire Mighty Great Minds-Red Bean Cakes with Creamy Coconut Sauce
Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 9:21 am

Blessed, Noble and the Awakened Magnificient,

Mighty Great Mind or Karl Marx

Contents

I.                 THE CREED OF THE BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY GREAT MIND

II.               THE ORIGINAL CREED OF KARL MARX 
III.             WHAT SURVIVES OF THE MARXIAN CREED
IV.            COMPARISON BETWEEN  THE BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY GREAT MIND AND KARL MARX

V.              THE MEANS

VI.            EVALUATION OF MEANS

VII.           WHOSE MEANS ARE MORE EFFICACIOUS

VIII.         WITHERING AWAY OF THE STATE

______________________________________________________________________________________

1. The Creed of the BLESSED,NOBLE AND THE aWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND.

2. The Original Creed of Karl Marx

3. What survives of the Marxian Creed?

4. Comparison between the BLESSED,NOBLE AND THE aWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND.and Karl Marx

5. Means

6. Evaluation of Means

7. Whose Means are More Efficacious?

8. Withering away of the State

A comparison between Karl Marx and  the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND may be regarded as a joke. There need be no surprise in this. Marx and the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND are divided by 2381 years. BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND was born in 563 BC and Karl Marx in 1818 AD Karl Marx is supposed to be the architect of a new ideology-polity a new Economic system. The BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND on the other hand is believed to be no more than the founder of a religion, which has no relation to politics or economics. The heading of this essay  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND or Karl Marx which suggests either a comparison or a contrast between two such personalities divided by such a lengthy span of time and occupied with different fields of thought is sure to sound odd. The Marxists may easily laugh at it and may ridicule the very idea of treating Marx and BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND on the same level. Marx so modern and  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND so ancient! The Marxists may say that the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND as compared to their master must be just primitive. What comparison can there be between two such persons? What could a Marxist learn from the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND ? What can BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND teach a Marxist? None-the-less a comparison between the two is a attractive and instructive Having read both and being interested in the ideology of both a comparison between them just forces itself on me. If the Marxists keep back their prejudices and study the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and understand what he stood for I feel sure that they will change their attitude. It is of course too much to expect that having been determined to scoff at the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND they will remain to pray. But this much can he said that they will realise that there is something in the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND’s teachings which is worth their while to take note of.

I  THE CREED OF THE BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND

The  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND is generally associated with the doctrine of Ahimsa. That is taken to be the be-all and end-all of his teachings. Hardly any one knows that what the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND taught is something very vast: far beyond Ahimsa. It is therefore necessary to set out in detail his tenets. I enumerate them below as I have understood them from my reading of the Tripitaka :

1. Religion is necessary for a free Society.

2. Not every Religion is worth having.

3. Religion must relate to facts of life and not to theories and speculations about God, or Soul or Heaven or Earth.

4. It is wrong to make God the centre of Religion.

5. It is wrong to make salvation of the soul as the centre of Religion.

6. It is wrong to make animal sacrifices to be the centre of religion.

7. Real Religion lives in the heart of man and not in the Shastras.

8. Man and morality must be the centre of religion. If not, Religion is a cruel superstition.

9. It is not enough for Morality to be the ideal of life. Since there is no God it must become the Jaw of life. 10. The function of Religion is to reconstruct the world and to make it happy and not to explain its origin or its end.

11. That the unhappiness in the world is due to conflict of interest and the only way to solve it is to follow the Ashtanga Marga.

12. That private ownership of property brings power to one class and sorrow to another.

13. That it is necessary for the good of Society that this sorrow be removed by removing its cause.

14. All human beings are equal.

15. Worth and not birth is the measure of man.

16. What is important is high ideals and not noble birth.

17. Maitri or fellowship towards all must never be abandoned. One owes it even to one’s enemy.

18. Every one has a right to learn. Learning is as necessary for man to live as food is.

19. Learning without character is dangerous.

20. Nothing is infallible. Nothing is binding forever. Every thing is subject to inquiry and examination. 21. Nothing is final.

22. Every thing is subject to the law of causation.

23. Nothing is permanent or sanatan. Every thing is subject to change. Being is always becoming.

24. War is wrong unless it is for truth and justice.

25. The victor has duties towards the vanquished. This is the creed of the Buddha in a summary form. How ancient hut how fresh! How wide and how deep are his teachings!

II THE ORIGINAL CREED OF KARL MARX

Let us now turn to the creed of Karl Marx as originally propounded by him. Karl Marx is no doubt the father of modern socialism or Communism but he was not interested merely in propounding the theory of Socialism. That had been done long before him by others. Marx was more interested in proving that his Socialism was scientific. His crusade was as much against the capitalists as it was against those whom he called the Utopian Socialists. He disliked them both. It is necessary to note this point because Marx attached the greatest importance to the scientific character of his Socialism. All the doctrines which Marx propounded had no other purpose than to establish his contention that his brand of Socialism was scientific and not Utopian.

By scientific socialism what Karl Marx meant was that his brand of socialism was inevitable and inescapable and that society was moving towards it and that nothing could prevent its march. It is to prove this contention of his that Marx principally laboured. Marx’s contention rested on the following theses. They were:

(i) That the purpose of philosophy is to reconstruct the world and not to explain the origin of the universe.

(ii) That the force which shapes the course of history are primarily economic.

(iii) That society is divided into two classes, owners and workers. (iv) That there is always a class conflict going on between the two classes.

(v) That the workers are exploited by the owners who misappropriate the surplus value, which is the result of the workers’ labour.

(vi) That this exploitation can be put an end to by nationalisation of the instruments of production i.e. abolition of private property.

(vii) That this exploitation is leading to greater and greater impoverishment of the workers.

(viii) That this growing impoverishment of the workers is resulting in a revolutionary spirit among the workers and the conversion of the class conflict into a class struggle.

(ix) That as the workers outnumber the owners, the workers are bound to capture the State and establish their rule, which he called the dictatorship of the proletariat.

(x) These factors are irresistible and therefore socialism is inevitable.

I hope I have reported correctly the propositions, which formed the original basis of Marxian Socialism.

III  WHAT SURVIVES OF THE MARXIAN CREED

Before making a comparison between the ideologies of the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and Karl Marx it is necessary to note how much of this original corpus of the Marxian creed has survived; how much has been disproved by history and how much has been demolished by his opponents.

The Marxian Creed was propounded sometime in the middle of the nineteenth century. Since then it has been subjected to much criticism. As a result of this criticism much of the ideological structure raised by Karl Marx has broken to pieces. There is hardly any doubt that Marxist claim that his socialism was inevitable has been completely disproved. The dictatorship of the Proletariat was first established in 1917 in one country after a period of something like seventy years after the publication of his Das Capital the gospel of socialism. Even when the Communism—which is another name for the dictatorship of the Proletariat—came to Russia, it did not come as something inevitable without any kind of human effort. There was a revolution and much deliberate planning had to be done with a lot of violence and blood shed, before it could step into Russia. The rest of the world is still waiting for coming of the Proletarian Dictatorship. Apart from this general falsification of the Marxian thesis that Socialism is inevitable, many of the other propositions stated in the lists have also been demolished both by logic as well as by experience. Nobody now  accepts the economic interpretation of history as the only explanation of history. Nobody accepts that the proletariat has been progressively pauperised. And the same is true about his other premises.

What remains of the Karl Marx is a residue of fire, small but still very important. The residue in my view consists of four items:

(i) The function of philosophy is to reconstruct the world and not to waste its time in explaining the origin of the world. (ii) That there is a conflict of interest between class and class. (iii) That private ownership of property brings power to one class and sorrow to another through exploitation.

(iv) That it is necessary for the good of society that the sorrow be removed by the abolition of private property.

IV COMPARISON BETWEEN BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND  AND KARL MARX

Taking the points from the Marxian Creed which have survived one may now enter upon a comparison between the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and Karl Marx.

On the first point there is complete agreement between the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and Karl Marx. To show how close is the agreement I quote below a part of the dialogue between BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and the Brahmin Potthapada.

Then, in the same terms, Potthapada asked (the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND) each of the following questions:

1. Is the world not eternal?

2. Is the world finite?

3. Is the world infinite?

4. Is the soul the same as the body?

5. Is the soul one thing, and the body another?

6. Does one who has gained the truth live again after death ?

7. Does he neither live again, nor not live again, after death ? And to each question the exalted one made the same reply: It was this.

“That too, Potthapada, is a matter on which I have expressed no opinion “.

28. But why has the Exalted One expressed no opinion on that ? (Because) This question is not calculated to profit, it is not concerned with (the Dhamma) it does not redound even to the elements of right conduct, nor to detachment nor to purification from lust, nor to quietude, nor to tranquillisation of heart, nor to real knowledge, nor to the insight (of the higher stages of the Path), nor to Nibbana. Therefore it is that I express no opinion upon it. ” On the second point I give below a quotation from a dialogue between BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and Pasenadi King of Kosala:

Moreover, there is always strife going on between kings, between ‘ nobles, between Brahmins, between house holders, between mother and son, between son and father, between brother and sister, , between sister and brother, between companion and companion. . .” ‘ Although these are the words of Pasenadi, the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND did not deny  that they formed a true picture of society.                      

As to the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND’s own attitude towards class conflict his doctrine ‘’. of Ashtanga Marga recognises that class conflict exists and that it is ; the class conflict which is the cause of misery.

On the third question I quote from the same dialogue of BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND with Potthapada;

Then what is it that the Exalted One has determined? ” “ I have expounded, Potthapada, that sorrow and misery exist! I have expounded, what is the origin of misery. I have expounded what is the cessation of misery: I have expounded what is method by which one may reach the cessation of misery.

30. And why has the Exalted One put forth a statement as to that?’

‘ Because that questions Potthapada, is calculated to profit, is concerned with the Dhamma redounds to the beginnings of right conduct, to un-tachment, to purification from lusts, to quietude, to tranquillisation of heart, to real knowledge, to the insight of the higher stages of the Path and to Nirvana. Therefore is it, Potthapada that I have put forward a statement as to that.

That language is different but the meaning is the same. If for misery one reads exploitation BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND is not away from Marx.

On the question of private property the following extract from a dialogue between  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and Ananda is very illuminating. In reply to a question by Ananda the  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND said:

I have said that avarice is because of possession. Now in what way that is so, Ananda, is to be understood after this manner. Where there is no possession of any sort or kind whatever by any one or anything, then there being no possession whatever, would there, owing to this cessation of possession, be any appearance of avarice? ” ‘There would not. Lord.

Wherefore, Ananda, just that is the ground, the basis, the genesis, the cause of avarice, to wit, possession.

31. I have said that tenacity is the cause possession. Now in what way that is so, Ananda, is to be understood after this manner. Were there no tenacity of any sort or kind whatever shown by any one with respect to any thing, then there being whatever, would there owing to this cessation of tenacity, be any appearance of possession? ‘ ‘There would not. Lord.’

Wherefore, Ananda, just that is the ground, the basis, the genesis, the cause of possession, to wit tenacity. ‘ On the fourth point no evidence is necessary. The rules of the Bhikshu Sangh will serve as the best testimony on the subject.

According to the rules a Bhikku can have private property only in the following eight articles and no more. These eight articles are: —

1  I

2. } Three robes or pieces of cloth for daily wear.

3. I

4. A girdle for the loins.

5. An alms-bowl.

6. A razor.

7. A needle.

8. A water strainer.

Further a Bhikku was completely forbidden to receive gold or silver for fear that with gold or silver he might buy some thing beside the eight things he is permitted to have.

These rules are far more rigorous than are to be found in communism in Russia.

V  THE MEANS

We must now come to the means. The means of bringing about Communism, which the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND propounded, were quite definite. The means can he decided into three parts. Part I consisted in observing the Pancha Silas. The Awakenment gave birth to a new gospel, which contains the key to the solution of the problem, which was haunting him.

The foundation of the New Gospel is the fact that the world was full of misery and unhappiness. It was fact not merely to be noted but to be regarded as being the first and foremost in any scheme of salvation. The recognition of this fact the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND made the starting point of his gospel.

To remove this misery and unhappiness was to him the aim and object of the gospel if it is to serve any useful purpose.

Asking what could be the causes of this misery the  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND found that there could be only two.

A part of the misery and unhappiness of man was the result of his own misconduct.  To remove this cause of misery he preached the practice of Panch Sila.

The Panch Sila comprised the following observations: (1) To abstain from destroying or causing destruction of any living things (2) To abstain from stealing i.e. acquiring or keeping by fraud or violence, the property of another: (3) To Abstain from telling untruth: (4) To abstain from lust: (5) To abstain from intoxicating drinks.

A part of the misery and unhappiness in the world was according to the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND the result of mans inequity towards man. How was this inequity to be removed ? For the removal of man’s inequity towards man the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND prescribed the Noble Eight-Fold Path. The elements of the Noble Fight-Fold Path are:

(1) Right views i.e. freedom from superstition: (2) Right aims, high and worthy of the intelligent and earnest men; (3) Right speech i.e. kindly, open, truthful: (4) Right Conduct i.e. peaceful, honest and pure; (5) Right livelihood i.e. causing hurt or injury to no living being; (6) Right perseverance in all the other seven; (7) Right mindfulness i.e. with a watchful and active mind; and (8) Right contemplation i.e. earnest thought on the deep mysteries of life.

The aim of the Noble Eight-Fold Path is to establish on earth the kingdom of righteousness, and thereby to banish sorrow and unhappiness from the face of the world.

The third part of the Gospel is the doctrine of Nibbana. The doctrine of Nibbana is an integral part of the doctrine of the Noble Eight-Fold Path. Without Nibbana the realisation of the Eight-Fold Path cannot be accomplished.

The doctrine of Nibbana tells what are the difficulties in the way of the realisation of the Eight-Fold Path.

The chiefs of these difficulties are ten in number. The BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND called them the Ten Asavas, Fetters or Hindrances.

 The first hindrance is the delusion of self. So long as a man is wholly occupied with himself, chasing after every bauble that he vainly thinks will satisfy the cravings of his heart, there is no noble path for him. Only when his eyes have been opened to the fact that he is but a tiny part of a measureless, whole, only when he begins to realise how impermanent a thing is his temporary individuality can he even enter upon this narrow path.

The second is Doubt and Indecision. When a mans eyes are opened to the great mystery of existence, the impermanence of every individuality, he is likely to be assailed by doubt and indecision as to his action. To do or not to do, after all my individuality is impermanent, why do anything are questions, which make him indecisive or inactive. But that will not do in life. He must make up his mind to follow the teacher, to accept the truth and to enter on the struggle or he will get no further.

The third is dependence on the efficacy of Rites and Ceremonies. No good resolutions, however firm will lead to anything unless a man gets rid of ritualism: of the belief that any outward acts. any priestly powers, and holy ceremonies, can afford him an assistance of any kind. It is only when he has overcome this hindrance, that men can be said to have fairly entered upon the stream and has a chance sooner or later to win a victory.

‘’ The fourth consists of the bodily passions… The fifth is ill will towards other individuals. The sixth is the suppression of the desire for a future life with a material body and the seventh is the desire for a future life in an immaterial world.

The eighth hindrance is Pride and nineth is self-righteousness. These are failings which it is most difficult for men to overcome, and to which superior minds are peculiarly liable a Praisaical contempt for those who are less able and less holy than themselves.

The tenth hindrance is ignorance. When all other difficulties are conquered this will even remain, the thorn in the flesh of the wise a.nd good, the last enemy and the bitterest foe of man.

Nibbana consists in overcoming these hindrances to the pursuit of the Noble Eight-Fold Path.

The doctrine of the Noble Eight-Fold Path tells what disposition of the mind which a person should sedulously cultivate. The doctrine of Nibbana tells of the temptation or hindrance which a person should earnestly overcome if he wishes to trade along with the Noble Eight-Fold Path

The Fourth Part of the new Gospel is the doctrine of Paramitas. The doctrine of Paraimitas inculcates the practice of ten virtues in one’s daily life.

These are those ten virtues—d) Panna (2) Sila (3) Nekkhama (4) Dana(5) Virya(6) Khanti(7) Succa(8) Aditthana(9) Mettaa-nd (10) Upekkha.

Panna or wisdom is the light that removes the darkenss of Avijja, Moha or Nescience. The Panna requires that one must get all his doubts removed by questioning those wiser than him self, associate with the wise and cultivate the different arts and sciences which help to develop the mind.

Sila is moral temperament, the disposition not to do evil and the disposition to do good; to be ashamed of doing wrong. To avoid doing evil for fear of punishment is Sila. Sila means fear of doing wrong. Nekkhama is renunciation of the pleasures of the world. Dana means the giving of one’s possessions, blood and limbs and even one’s life for the good of the others without expecting anything in return.

Virya is right endeavour. It is doing with all your might with thought never turning back, whatever you have undertaken to do.

Khanti is forbearance. Not to meet hatred by harted is the essence of it. For hatred is not appeased by hatred. It is appeased only by forbearance.

Succa is truth. An aspirant for Buddha never speaks a lie. His speech is truth and nothing but truth.

Aditthana is resolute determination to reach the goal. Metta is fellow feeling extending to all beings, foe and friend, beast and man.

Upekka is detachment as distinguished from indifference. It is a state of mind where there is neither like nor dislike. Remaining unmoved by the result and yet engaged in the pursuit of it.

These virtues one must practice to his utmost capacity. That is why they are called Paramitas (States of Perfection).

Such is the gospel the  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND enunciated as a result of his enlightenment to end the sorrow and misery in the world.

It is clear that the means adopted by the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND were to convert a man by changing his moral disposition to follow the path voluntarily.

The means adopted by the Communists are equally clear, short and swift. They are (1) Violence and (2) Dictatorship of the Proletariat.

The Communists say that there are the only two means of establishing communism. The first is violence. Nothing short of it will suffice to break up the existing system. The other is dictatorship of the proletariat. Nothing short of it will suffice to continue the new system.

It is now clear what are the similarities and differences between BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and Karl Marx. The differences are about the means. The end is common to both.                

VI  EVALUATION OF MEANS

We must now turn to the evaluation of means. We must ask whose means are superior and lasting in the long run. There are, however some misunderstandings on both sides. It is necessary to clear them up. Take violence. As to violence there are many people who seem to shiver at the very thought of it. But this is only a sentiment. Violence cannot be altogether dispensed with. Even in non-communist countries a murderer is hanged. Does not hanging amount to violence? Non-communist countries go to war with non-communist countries. Millions of people are killed. Is this no violence? If a murderer can be killed, because he has killed a citizen, if a soldier can be killed in war because he belongs to a hostile nation why cannot a property owner be killed if his ownership leads to misery for the rest of humanity? There is no reason to make an exception in favour of the property owner, why one should regard private property as sacrosanct.

The BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND was against violence. But he was also in favour of justice and where justice required he permitted the use of force. This is well illustrated in his dialogue with Sinha Senapati the Commander-in-Chief of Vaishali. Sinha having come to know that the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND preached Ahimsa went to him and asked:

The Bhagvan preaches Ahimsa. Does the Bhagvan preach an offender to be given freedom from punishment? Does the Bhagvan preach that we should not go to war to save our wives, our children and our wealth? Should we suffer at the hands of criminals in the name of Ahimsa.?”

Does the Tathagata prohibit all war even when it is in the interest of Truth and Justice?

 BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND replied. You have wrongly understood what I have been preaching. An offender must be punished and an innocent man must be freed. It is not a fault of the Magistrate if he punishes an offender. The cause of punishment is the fault of the offender. The Magistrate who inflicts the punishment is only carrying out the law. He does not become stained with Ahimsa. A man who fights for justice and safety cannot be accused of Ahimsa. If all the means of maintaining peace have failed then the responsibility for Himsa falls on him who starts war. One must never surrender to evil powers. War there may be. But it must not be for selfish ends….”

There are of course other grounds against violence such as those urged by Prof. John Dewey. In dealing with those who contend that the end justifies the means is morally perverted doctrine, Dewey has rightly asked what can justify the means if not the end ? It is only the end that can justify the means.

BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND would have probably admitted that it is only the end which would justify the means. What else could? And he would have said that if the end justified violence, violence was a legitimate means for the end in view. He certainly would not have exempted property owners from force if force were the only means for that end. As we shall see his means for the end were different. As Prof. Dewey has pointed out that violence is only another name for the use of force and although force must be used for creative purposes a distinction between use of force as energy and use of force as violence needs to be made. The achievement of an end involves the destruction of many other ends, which are integral with the one that is sought to be destroyed. Use of force must be so regulated that it should save as many ends as possible in destroying the evil one.  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND’s Ahimsa was not as absolute as the Ahimsa preached by Mahavira the founder of Jainism. He would have allowed force only as energy. The communists preach Ahimsa as an absolute principle. To this the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND was deadly opposed.

As to Dictatorship the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND would have none of it. He was born a democrat and he died a democrat. At the time he lived there were 14 monarchical states and 4 republics. He belonged to the Sakyas and the Sakya’s kingdom was a republic. He was extremely in love with Vaishali which was his second home because it was a republic. Before his Mahaparinibban he spent his Varshavasa in Vaishali. After the completion of his Varshavasa he decided to leave Vaishali and go elsewhere as was his wont. After going some distance he looked back on Vaishali and said to Ananda. “This is the last look of Vaishali which the Tathagata is having “. So fond was he of this republic.

He was a thorough equalitarian. Originally the Bhikkus, including the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND himself, wore robes made of rags. This rule was enunciated to prevent the aristocratic classes from joining the Sangh. Later Jeevaka the great physician prevailed upon the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND to accept a robe, which was made of a whole cloth. The BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND  at once altered the rule and extended it to all the monks.

Once the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND’s mother Mahaprajapati Gotami who had joined the Bhikkuni Sangh heard that the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND had got a chill. She at once started preparing a scarf for him. After having completed it she took to the  BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND and asked him to wear it. But he refused to accept it saying that if it is a gift it must be a gift to the whole Sangh and not to an individual member of the Sangh. She pleaded and pleaded but he refused to yield.

The Bhikshu Sangh had the most democratic constitution. He was only one of the Bhikkus. At the most he was like a Prime Minister among members of the Cabinet. He was never a dictator. Twice before his death he was asked to appoint some one as the head of the Sangh to control it. But each time he refused saying that the Dhamma is the Supreme Commander of the Sangh. He refused to be a dictator and refused to appoint a dictator.

What about the value of the means? Whose means are superior and lasting in the long run?

Can the Communists say that in achieving their valuable end they have not destroyed other valuable ends? They have destroyed private property. Assuming that this is a valuable end can the Communists say that they have not destroyed other valuable end in the process of achieving it? How many people have they killed for achieving their end. Has human life no value ? Could they not have taken property without taking the life of the owner ?

Take dictatorship. The end of Dictatorship is to make the Revolution a permanent revolution. This is a valuable end. But can the Communists say that in achieving this end they have not destroyed other valuable ends ? Dictatorship is often defined as absence of liberty or absence of Parliamentary Government. Both interpretations are not quite clear. There is no liberty even when there is Parliamentary Government. For law means want of liberty. The difference between Dictatorship and Parliamentary Govt. lies in this. In Parliamentary Government every citizen has a right to criticise the restraint on liberty imposed by the Government. In Parliamentary Government you have a duty and a right; the duty to obey the law and right to criticise it. In Dictatorship you have only duty to obey but no right to criticise it.

VII WHOSE MEANS ARE MORE EFFICACIOUS

We must now consider whose means are more lasting. One has to choose between Government by force and Government by moral disposition.

As Burke has said force cannot be a lasting means. In his speech on conciliation with America he uttered this memorable warning:

First, Sir, permit me to observe, that the use of force alone is but temporary. It may subdue for a moment; but it does not remove the necessity of subduing again; and a nation is not governed which is perpetually to be conquered.

My next objection is its uncertainty. Terror is not always the effect of force, and an armament is not a victory. If you do not succeed, you are without resource, for, conciliation failing, force remains; but force failing, no further hope of reconciliation is left.  Power and authority are sometimes bought by kindness; but they can never be begged as alms by an impoverished and defeated violence.

A further objection to force is that you impair the object by your very endeavours to preserve it. The thing you fought for is the thing, which you recover, but depreciated, sunk, wasted and consumed in the contest.

In a sermon addressed to the Bhikkus the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND has shown the difference between the rule by Righteousness and Rule by law i.e. force. Addressing the Brethren he said:

(2) Long ago, brethren, there was Sovereign overlord named Strongtyre, a king ruling in righteousness, lord of the four quarters of the earth, conqueror, the protector of his people. He was the possessor of the celestial wheel. He lived in supremacy over this earth to its ocean bounds, having conquered it, not by the courage, by the sword, but by righteousness.

(3) Now, brethren, after many years, after many hundred years. after manu thousand years, king Strongtyre command a certain man, saying:

Thou should est see, Sir, the Celestial Wheel has sunk a little, has slipped down from its place, bring me word.

Now after many many hundred years had slipped down from its place On seeing this he went to King Strongtyre and said: Know. sir, for a truth that the Celestial Wheel has sunk, has slipped down from its place.

The king Strongtyre, brethren, let the prince his eldest son be sent for and speak thus:

Behold, dear boy, my Celestial Wheel has sunk a little, has slipped down from its place. Now it has been told me; If the Celestial Wheel of a wheel turning King shall sink down, shall slip down from its place, that king has not much longer to live. I have had my fill of human pleasures; It’s time to seek after divine joys, Come, dear boy, take thou charge over this earth bounded by the ocean. But I, shaving, hair and beard, and donning yellow robes, will go forth from home into the homeless state.

So brethren. King Strongtyre, having in due form established his eldest son on the throne, shaved hair and bearded, donned yellow robes and went forth from home into homeless state. But on the seventh day after the royal hermit had gone forth, the Celestial Wheel disappeared.

(4) Then a certain man went to the King, and told him, saying: Know, 0 King, for a truth, that the Celestial Wheel has disappeared!

Then that King, brethren, was grieved thereat and afflicted with sorrow. And he went to the royal hermit, and told him, saying, Know, sir, for a truth, that the Celestial Wheel has disappeared.

And the anointed king so saying, the royal hermit made reply. Grieve thou not, dear son, that the Celestial Wheel has disappeared, nor be afflicted that the Celestial Wheel has disappeared. For no paternal heritage of thin, dear son, is the Celestial Wheel. But verily, dear son, turn thou in the Ariyan turning of the Wheel-turners. (Act up to the noble ideal of duty set before themselves by the true sovereigns of the world). Then it may well be that if thou carry out the Ariyan duty of a Wheel-turning Monarch, and on the feast of the moon thou wilt for, with bathed head to keep the feast on the chief upper terrace, to the Celestial Wheel will manifest, itself with its thousand spokes its tyre, navel and all its part complete. (5) Put what, sire is this Ariya duty of a Wheel-turning Monarch?’ This, dear son, that thou, leaning on the Norm (the law of truth and righteousness) honouring, respecting and revering it, doing homage to it, hallowing it, being thyself a Norm-banner, a Norm-signal, having the Norm as thy master, should provide the right watch, ward, and protection for thine own folk, for the army, for the nobles, for vassals, for brahmins and house holders, for town and country dwellers, for the religious world, and for beasts and birds. Throughout thy kingdom let no wrongdoing prevail. And whosoever in thy kingdom is poor, to him let wealth be given.

And when dear son, in thy kingdom men of religious life, renouncing the carelessness arising from intoxication of the senses, and devoted to forbearance and sympathy, each mastering self, each claiming self, each protecting self, shall come to thee from time to time, and question the concerning what is good and what is bad. what is criminal and what is not, what is to be done and what is to be left undone, what line of action will in the long run work for weal or for woe, thou shouldest hear what they have to say and thou shouldest deter them from evil, and bid them take up what is good. This, dear son, is the Ariyan duty of a sovereign of the world.’

Even so, sire, answered the anointed king, and obeying, and carried out the Ariyan duty of a sovereign lord. To him, thus behaving, when on the feast of the full moon he had gone in the observance with bathed head to the chief upper Terrance the Celestial Wheel revealed itself, with its thousand spokes, its tyre. its naval, and all its part complete. And seeing this is occurred to the king: It has been told me that a king to whom on such a occasion the Celestial Wheel reveals itself completely, becomes a Wheel-turning monarch. May I even I also become a sovereign of the world.’

(6) Then brethren, the king arose from his seat and uncovering his robe from one shoulder, took in his left hand a pitcher, and with his right hand sprinkled up over the Celestial Wheel, saying: Roll onward, O Lord Wheel! Go forth and overcome, O Lord Wheel ! Then, brethren, the Celestial Wheel rolled onwards towards the region of the East. and after it went the Wheel-turning king, and with him his army, horses and chariots and elephants and men. And in whatever place, brethren, the wheel stopped, there the king, the victorious war-lord, took up his abode, and with him his fourfold army. Then the all, the rival kings in the region of the East came to the sovereign king and said Come, O mighty king! Welcome, O mighty king! All is thine, O mighty King! Teach us, O mighty king!

The king, the sovereign war-lord, speak thus: Ye shall slay no living thing. Ye shall not take that which has not been given. Ye shall not act wrongly touching bodily desires. Ye shall speak no lie. Ye shall drink no maddening drink. Enjoy your possessions as you have been wont to do.’

(7) Then, brethern, the Celestial Wheel, plunging down to the Eastern ocean, rose up out again, and rolled onwards to the region of the south. (and there all happened as had happened in the East). And in like manner the Celestial Wheel, plunging into Southern ocean, rose up out again and rolled onward to the region of the West. . . and of the North: and there too happened as had happened in the Southern and West.

Then when the Celestial Wheel had gone forth conquering over the whole earth to its ocean boundary, it returned to the royal city, and stood, so that one might think it fixed, in front of the judgement hall at entrance to the inner apartments of the king, the Wheel-turner, lighting up with its glory the facade of the inner apartments of the king, the sovereign of the world.

(8) And a second king. brethern, also a Wheel-turning monarch,. . . and a third. . . and a fourth. . . and a fifth. . . and a sixth. . . and a seventh king, a victorious war-lord, after many years, after many        hundred years, after many thousand years, command a certain man, saying:

If thou should’est see, sirrah, that the Celestial Wheel has sunk down, has slid from its place, bring me word.’ ‘Even so, sire.’ replied the man.

So after many years, after many hundred years, after many thousand years, that man saw that the Celestial Wheel had sunk down, had become dislodged from its place. And so seeing he went to the king, the warlord, and told him.

Then that king did (even as Strongtyre had done). And on the seventh day after the royal hermit had gone forth the Celestial Wheel disappeared.

Then a certain man went and told the King. Then the King was grieved at the disappearance of the wheel, and afflicted with grief. But        he did not go to the hermit-king to ask concerning, the Ariyan Duty of sovereign war-lord. But his own ideas, forsooth, he governed his people; and they so governed differently from what they had been. did not prosper as they used to do under former kings who had carried out the Arivan duty of a sovereign king.

Then, brethren, the ministers and courtiers, the finance officials, the guards and door keepers and they who lived by sacred verses came to the King and speak thus:

Thy people, O king. whilst thou governest them by thine own ideas differently from the way to which they were used when former kings were carrying out the Arivan Duty prosper not. Now there are in thy kingdom ministers and courtiers, finance officers, guards and custodians, and they who live by sacred verses—both all of us and others—who keep the knowledge of the Ariyan duty of the sovereign king. to ! O king. do thou ask us concerning it: to thee thus asking will we declare it.’

9. Then, brethren, the king, having made the ministers and all the rest sit down together, asked them about the Ariyan duty of Sovereign war-lord. And they declared it unto him. And when he had heard them, he did provide the due watch and ward protection, but on the destitute he bestowed no wealth and because this was not done, poverty became widespread.

When poverty was thus become rife, a certain man took that which others had not given him, what people call by theft. Him they caught, and brought before the king, saying: This man, O king has taken that which was not given to him and that is theft‘.

Thereupon the king speak thus to the man. Is it true sirrah, that thou hast taken what no man gave thee, hast committed what men call theft.’ It is true, O king.’ ‘But why?’

O king, I have nothing to keep me alive.’ Then the king bestowed wealth on that man, saying: With this wealth sir, do thou both keep thyself alive, maintain thy parents, maintain children and wife, carry on thy business.’ ‘Even so, O king,’ replied the man.

10. Now another man, brethren, took by theft what was not given him. Him they caught and brought before the king and told him., saying: this man, O king, hath taken by theft what was not given him‘.

And the king (spoke and did even as he had spoken and done to the former man.)

II. Now men heard brethren, that to them who had taken by theft what was not given them, the King was giving wealth. And hearing they thought, let us then take by theft what has not been given us.

Now a certain man did so. And him they caught and charged before the king who (as before) asked him why he had stolen. Because, O king I cannot maintain myself. Then the king thought: If I bestow wealth on anyone so ever who has taken by theft what was not given him, there will be hereby and increase of this stealing. Let me now put final stop to this and inflict condign punishment on him, have his head cut off!

So he bade his man saying now look ye! bind this man’s arms behind him with a strong rope and tight knot, shave his head bald, lead him around with a harsh sounding drum, from road to road, from cross ways to cross ways, take him out by the southern gate and to the south of the town, put a final stop to this, inflict on him uttermost penalty, cut of his head.’

‘ Even so, O king ‘ answered the men, and carried out his commands.

12. Now men heard, brethren, that they who took by theft what was not given them were thus put to death. And hearing they thought, let us also now have sharp swords made ready for themselves, and them from whom we take what is not given us—what they call them— let us put a final stop to them, inflict on them uttermost penalty., and their heads off.

And they got themselves sharp swords, and came forth to sack village and town and city, and to work highway robbery. And then whom they robbed they made an end of, cutting off their heads.

13. Thus, brethren, from goods not being bestowed on the destitute poverty grieve rife; from poverty growing rife stealing increased, from the spread of stealing violence grew space, from the growth of violence the destruction of life common, from the frequency of murder both the span of life in those beings and their comeliness also (diminished).

Now among humans of latter span of life, brethren, a certain took by theft what was not given him and even as those others was accused before the king and questioned if it was true that he had stolen. Nay, O king,’ he replied, they are deliberately telling lies.’ 14. Thus from goods not being bestowed on the destitute, poverty grew rife… stealing… violence… murder… until lying grew common.

Again a certain man reported to the king, saying such and such a man, O king! has taken by theft what was not given him ‘— thus speaking evil of him.

15. And so, brethren, from goods not being bestowed on the destitute poverty grew rife… stealing… violence… murder… lying… evil speaking grew abundant.

16. From lying there grew adultery.

17. Thus from goods not being bestowed on the destitute, poverty…   stealing…   violence…   murder…   lying…   evil speaking. . . immorality grew rife.

18. Among (them) brethren, three things grew space incest, wanton greed and perverted lust.

Then these things grew apace lack of filial piety to mother and father, lack of religious piety to holy men, lack of regard for the head of the clan.

19. There will come a time, brethren, when the descendants of those humans will have a life-span of ten years. Among humans of this life span, maidens of five years will be of a marriageable age. Among such humans these kinds of tastes (savours) will disappear; ghee, butter, oil of tila, sugar, salt. Among such humans kudrusa grain will be the highest kind of food. Even as to-day rice and curry is the highest kind of food, so will kudrusa grain will be then. Among such humans the ten moral courses of conduct will altogether disappear, the tenimmoral courses of action will flourish excessively; there will be no word for moral among such humans, the ten moral courses of conduct will altogether disappear, the ten immoral courses of action will flourish excessively, there will be no word for moral among such humans—far less any moral agent. Among such humans, brethren, they who lack filian and religious piety, and show no respect for the Head of the clan—’tis they to whom homage and praise will be given, just as to-day homage and praise are given to the filial minded, to the pious and to them who respect the heads of their clans.

20. Among such humans, brethren, there will be no (such thoughts of reverence as are a bar to intermarriage with) mother, or mother’s sister, or mother’s sister-in-law, or teacher’s wife, or father’s sister-in-law. The world will fall into promiscuity, like goats and sheep, fowls and swine, dogs and jackals.

Among such humans, brethren keen mutual enmity will become the rule, keen ill-will, keen animosity, passionate thoughts even of killing, in a mother towards her child, in a child towards its father, in brother to brother, in brother to sister, in sister to brother. Just a sportsman feels towards the game that he sees, so will they feel.

This is probably the finest picture of what happens when moral force fails and brutal force takes its place.  What the Buddha wanted was that each man should be morally so trained that he may himself become a sentinel for the kingdom of righteousness.

VIII WITHERING AWAY OF THE STATE

The Communists themselves admit that their theory of the State as a permanent dictatorship is a weakness in their political philosophy. They take shelter under the plea that the State will ultimately wither away. There are two questions, which they have to answer. When will it wither away? What will take the place of the State when it withers away? To the first question they can give no definite time. Dictatorship for a short period may be good and a welcome thing even for making Democracy safe. Why should not Dictatorship liquidate itself after it has done its work, after it has removed all the obstacles and boulders in the way of democracy and has made the path of Democracy safe. Did not Asoka set an example? He practised violence against the Kalingas. But thereafter he renounced violence completely. If our victor’s to-day not only disarm their victims but also disarm themselves there would be peace all over the world.

The Communists have given no answer. At any rate no satisfactory answer to the question what would take the place of the State when it withers away, though this question is more important than the question when the State will wither away. Will it. be succeeded by Anarchy? If so the building up of the Communist State is an useless effort. If it cannot be sustained except by force and if it results in anarchy when the force holding it together is withdraws what good is the Communist State. The only thing, which could sustain it after force is withdrawn, is Religion. But to the Communists Religion is anathema. Their hatred to Religion is so deep seated that they will not even discriminate between religions which are helpful to Communism and religions which are not; The Communists have carried their hatred of

Christianity to Buddhism without waiting to examine the difference between the two. The charge against Christianity levelled by the Communists was two fold. Their first charge against Christianity was that they made people other worldliness and made them suffer poverty in this world. As can be seen from quotations from Buddhism in the earlier part of this tract such a charge cannot be levelled against Buddhism.

The second charge levelled by the Communists against Christianity cannot be levelled against Buddhism. This charge is summed up in the statement that Religion is the opium of the people. This charge is based upon the Sermon on the Mount which is to be found in the Bible. The Sermon on the Mount sublimates poverty and weakness. It promises heaven to the poor and the weak. There is no Sermon on the Mount to be found in the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND’s teachings. His teaching is to acquire wealth. I give below his Sermon on the subject to Anathapindika one of his disciples.

Once Anathapindika came to where the Exalted One was staying. Having come he made obeisance to the Exalted One and took a seat at one side and asked Will the Awakened One tell what things are welcome, pleasant, agreeable, to the householder but which are hard to gain.’

The Awakened One having heard the question put to him said Of such things the first is to acquire wealth lawfully.’

The second is to see that your relations also get their wealth lawfully.’

The third is to live long and reach great age.’ ‘Of a truth, householder, for the attainment of these four things, which in the world are welcomed, pleasant agreeable but hard to gain, there are also four conditions precedent. They are the blessing of faith, the blessing of virtuous conduct, the blessing of liberality and the blessing of wisdom.

The Blessing of virtuous conduct which abstains From taking life, thieving, unchastely, lying and partaking of fermented liquor.

The blessing of liberality consists in the householder living with mind freed from the taint of avarice, generous, open-handed, delighting in gifts, a good one to be asked and devoted to the distribution of gifts.

Wherein consists the blessing of Wisdom? He know that an householder who dwells with mind overcome by greed, avarice, ill-will, sloth, drowsiness, distraction and flurry, and also about, commits wrongful deeds and neglects that which ought to be done, and by so doing deprived of happiness and honour.

Greed, avarice, ill will, sloth and drowsiness, distraction and flurry and doubt are stains of the mind. A householder who gets rid of such stains of the mind acquires great wisdom, abundant wisdom, clear vision and perfect wisdom.

Thus to acquire wealth legitimately and justly, earn by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat of the brow is a great blessing. The householder makes himself happy and cheerful and preserves himself full of happiness; also makes his parents, wife, and children, servants, and labourers, friends and companions happy and cheerful, and preserves them full of happiness. The Russians do not seem to be paying any attention to Buddhism as an ultimate aid to sustain Communism when force is withdrawn.

The Russians are proud of their Communism. But they forget that the wonder of all wonders is that the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND established Communism so far as the Sangh was concerned without dictatorship. It may be that it was a communism on a very small scale but it was communism I without dictatorship a miracle which Lenin failed to do.

The BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND’s method was different. His method was to change the mind of man: to alter his disposition: so that whatever man does, he does it voluntarily without the use of force or compulsion. His main means to alter the disposition of men was his Dhamma and the constant preaching of his Dhamma. The BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MINDs way was not to force people to do what they did not like to do although it was good for them. His way was to alter the disposition of men so that they would do voluntarily what they would not otherwise to do.

It has been claimed that the Communist Dictatorship in Russia has wonderful achievements to its credit. There can be no denial of it. That is why I say that a Russian Dictatorship would be good for all backward countries. But this is no argument for permanent Dictatorship. Humanity does not only want economic values, it also wants spiritual values to be retained. Permanent Dictatorship has paid no attention to spiritual values and does not seem to intend to. Carlyle called Political Economy a Pig Philosophy. Carlyle was of course wrong. For man needs material comforts But the Communist Philosophy seems to be equally wrong for the aim of their philosophy seems to be fatten pigs as though men are no better than pigs. Man must grow materially as well as spiritually. Society has been aiming to lay a new foundation was summarised by the French Revolution in three words, Fraternity, Liberty and Equality. The French Revolution was welcomed because of this slogan. It failed to produce equality. We welcome the Russian Revolution because it aims to produce equality. But it cannot be too much emphasised that in producing equality society cannot afford to sacrifice fraternity or liberty. Equality will be of no value without fraternity or liberty. It seems that the three can coexist only if one follows the way of the BLESSED, NOBLE AND THE AWAKENED MAGNIFICIENT, MIGHTY, GREAT MIND. Communism can give one but not all.

 

Red Bean Cakes with Creamy Coconut Sauce

posted by Annie B. Bond Jun 20, 2008 9:00 am
Red Bean Cakes with Creamy Coconut Sauce

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Beans and rice are an inexpensive and nourishing staple food in many regions of the world. Here they are blended with piquant spices and formed into cakes that are served with a delectable rich coconut sauce.

Rice and beans with a zesty twist–and using canned beans means you can make them in practically no time. Tasty, vegan, and substantial.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small red onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups cooked or one 15-ounce can pinto, kidney, or other red beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup cold cooked white or brown rice
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup blanched almonds
1 tablespoon minced shallots
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk

1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, garlic, paprika, thyme, and cayenne. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside to cool.

2. In a food processor, combine the beans, rice, parsley, salt, and pepper to taste, and sautéed onion mixture. Pulse to blend, leaving some texture intact. Shape into patties and set aside.

3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bean cakes and cook, turning once, until browned on both sides. 7 to 10 minutes total. Reduce the heat to low and keep warm while you prepare the sauce.

4. Place the almonds and shallots in a blender and grind into a paste. Add the coconut milk and salt and pepper to taste and blend until smooth. Transfer to a small saucepan over low heat and cook, stirring, until hot.

5. Transfer the bean cakes to a platter, pour the sauce over them, and serve.

Serves 4.

Adapted from Vegan Planet, by Robin Robertson (Harvard Common Press, 2003).


Online edition of India’s National Newspaper
Thursday, Jun 26, 2008

U.P. doctors permitted private practice

Atiq Khan



They won’t be allowed to hold administrative post

Their services will be on a contractual basis



LUCKNOW: Doctors of medical colleges in Uttar Pradesh have been permitted to do private practice.

But they will not be allowed to hold any administrative posts.

Those who opt for it will not be eligible for regular pay scales. They will get a fixed salary and their services will be on a contractual basis.

This condition will also apply to teachers of the Chhatrapati Shahuji Maharaj Medical University in Lucknow.

The decision, taken at a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday presided over by Chief Minister Mayawati, is seen as a measure to settle the dispute surrounding private practice by doctors. The issue has been simmering for some time, with some senior teachers of the CSM Medical University here deciding to take voluntary retirement from service.

The Cabinet also approved the revision of the pay scales of CSMMU teachers and doctors of medical colleges. Cabinet Secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh told newspersons that the scale of the medical university teachers would be on a par with that of the doctors in the Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, whereas for the doctors of the other State medical colleges, University Grants Commission (UGC) scales will be applicable.

Mr. Singh said that following the pay revision, the salaries of the medicos would go up by at least Rs. 20,000.

Stamp duty

Another significant decision related to the stamp duty on the registration of plots. While the duty has been reduced from 8-5 per cent, the stamp fee on agreement papers has been scaled down from Rs. 80 to Rs. 40. Henceforth, the circle rate will not apply and the plots will be registered on the basis of the rates of the development authorities.

Sindhia clueless on what led to his removal

BANGALORE: The former Minister, P.G.R. Sindhia, who was removed from the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) on Tuesday, is still clueless on what led to it.

Mr. Sindhia, who was the national general secretary of the BSP, told The Hindu here on Wednesday that he has not been able to find out why the party president Mayawati had taken such a “harsh decision.”

“I have been loyal to her and the party ideology. I had not joined BSP for any personal gains,” he remarked.

Mr. Sindhia said even his distant relative Sudhir Sawanth, who was the convenor of the Maharashtra unit of the BSP, has been expelled from the party.

Mr. Sindhia had no answer when he was asked whether a Dalit and non-Dalit conflict in the party could have led to his ouster.

He said he was also trying to ascertain the reports in a section of the media that the BSP was planning to strike an alliance with Janata Dal (Secular) in Karnataka for the Lok Sabha elections.

The reports indicated that Mr. Sindhia was removed from the party fearing that he could create hurdles for the BSP and the Janata Dal(S) alliance in view of his strained relationship with the Janata Dal(S) president H.D. Deve Gowda.

BSP General Secretary and Rajya Sabha member Veer Singh, who, on Tuesday, announced that Mr. Sindhia was removed from the party, said he [Mr. Sindhia] was unable to work in coordination with the old office-bearers and had become “inactive.”

 

Thank You

comments (0)
06/25/08
Mayawati’s dream Buddha statue project -Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Ancient India-CHAPTER 4-Reformers and Their Fate-P.G.R. Sindhia ousted from the BSP - ISindhia expelled from BSP-nternational Early Birds Brotherhood Multipurpose Cooperative Society(IEBBMCS) For The Welfare and Ultimate Bliss of Entire Mighty Great Minds
Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 12:49 am

Buddha Statue Project is a Wholesome Desire of all the Buddhists in the World.

May all the Buddhists visit Kushinagar along with Lumbini, Bodh Gaya & Saranath as told by the Buddha. And also Rajgir, Jetavana, Kapilavattu and Nalanda.

May all the Buddhists Organise, Educate and Meditate for the successful completion of the project by sacrificing all their Time, Tallent and Treasure.

                                                                            -Triple Gem Study Circle

India eNews Logo

Mayawati’s dream Buddha statue project

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati’s dream project of building the tallest Buddha statue in the world at 152 metres - taller than the Bamian Buddhas destroyed by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Kushinagar town is where the project is to come up on a sprawling 750-acre plot. It is located around 330 km from Lucknow, on the border with Nepal, where the Buddha died, or attained Nirvana, 2,500 years ago.

Project began in 2002 when Mayawati first conceived the plan during her third stint as chief minister, but the government had later succeeded in bringing around the farmers.

We hope to convince the villagers that Kushinagar would become an international tourist destination and create jobs for them,’ P.K. Mohanty, commissioner of Gorakhpur division, told IANS.

The proposed 152.4 m bronze statue would sit atop a 17-storey building. It would be higher than the world’s tallest Buddha statue of 67 metres in China’s Sichuan province. The ones destroyed by the Taliban were 52 m and 34 m tall.

The building on which the Buddha would sit will have another 12 m statue, besides prayer halls and terraced gardens. The campus would also have a museum, an art gallery, a university for the study of philosophy, a women’s college, a hospital and a hotel.

The $222-million project is being implemented by a global private organisation called Maitreyi, which has set up a trust in Gorakhpur, about 50 km from here.

The state government is acquiring the land from the farmers and would lease it out to the Maitreyi Trust free of cost.

Officials told IANS that 660 acres of land belonging to about 3,000 farmers of seven villages was being acquired for the project, while the rest 90 acres belongs to the government.

The range of the compensation the government has offered is up to Rs.5 million per acre. It would vary depending on the quality and location of the land.

‘We have announced a very fair compensation and villagers should not have any problem with it,’ said Mohanty. He believes the government will succeed in completing the acquisition process by October.

Uttar Pradesh to boast of world’s tallest Buddha statue
Filed under: For The Gain of the Many and For the Welfare of the Man
Posted by: @ 11:58 am

The Maitreya Project, Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh, India
…The World’s tallest statue and a brilliant religious masterpiece dedicated to the Maitreya Buddha!

Now, another great religious project has officially been given the go-ahead in one of the poorest parts of India. The Maitreya Project is a tribute to Buddhism for and from the land of the Buddha and is as a multi-faith cooperative designed by Tibetans who call India their home as as a lasting gift to India and Buddhism.

In this era of veritable skyscraper-hedonism (*cough*Dubai*coughh* j/k), this project is unique in that it is designed to fulfill a completely selfless goal, namely “to benefit as many people as possible.” A monumental sustainable work of art that will serve as a constant source of inspiration and a symbol of loving-kindness, work will soon begin on the 152 meter-tall Maitreya Buddha Statue that is the centerpiece of a large temple complex.

An engineering marvel that at will not only be — at three times the size of the Statue of Liberty — the world’s tallest statue and world’s tallest temple but will also be the world’s largest (first?) statue-skyscraper, designed to have a lifespan surpassing a 1,000 years.

For more information and a large collection of pictures of this beautiful project originally posted by me on Skyscrapercity.com, read on!…

 

The focal point of Indian architecture, like its culture, has always been religious in nature. Just as the Indian economic boom is bringing incredible economic and architectural growth in the secular area, so has Indian religious architecture once again become manifest in the construction of some of the largest, massive, and most intricate religious architecture the world has seen, from the recently completed Akshardham Temple, New Delhi — the largest volume Hindu Temple in India, to the under construction Global Vipassana Pagoda, Mumbai — the largest stupa, largest dome, and largest rock cave in the world, to the planned Sri Mayapur Vedic Temple and Planetarium, Mayapur, the world’s tallest Hindu temple.

And now the Maitreya Buddha Statue is to be another gem added to this crow. The statue is a veritable temple-skyscraper that will contain 17 individual shrine rooms. The highest room at 140 meters high — the equviliant height of the 40th storey of a standard building. This statue and complex will be a fusion of Indian and Tibetan architectural styles that will adhere to ancient Vaastu Shastra design code and will also hold the world’s largest collection of Lord Buddha’s relics.

^ A cutaway view of the 152 meter Maitreya statue and throne building showing the spaces and levels within. Note that the throne itself will be a 17 storey fully functional temple, with 15 additional shrine rooms in the the body of the Maitreya statue.

Apart from the statue/skyscraper, the Maitreya Project organizers will also build free hospitals and schools servicing tens of thousands of poor, and also be a huge catalyst for infrastructure and tourism development efforts in one of the most economically backwards parts of India.

The project is a joint religious collaboration by organizations representing the various sects and faiths that revere the Buddha: from Hinduism to Mahayana to Vajrayana to Hinayana to Jaina to Christian and Muslim. Under guidance of the overall project conceptualizer, Nepalese-Tibetan spiritual leader Lama Zopa Rinpoche, the Project was funded by Buddhist and Hindu temples, social organizations, religious groups and by individuals in India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Tibet, China, Japan, Korea, the UK and America.

Through this project, India once again shows that the ancient arts of massive devotional architecture continues to undergo a veritable renaissance.

—–==–=–==—–

The Maitreya Complex: Project Detail


^ A prerendering of the Maitreya Buddha statue and temple, showing its massive size.

The Maitreya Project “is based on the belief that inner peace and outer peace share a cause and effect relationship and that loving-kindness leads to peace at every level of society — peace for individuals, families, communities and the world.”

The entire temple complex is designed to be completely sustainable, meaning that it will quite literally have the same environmental impact (i.e. emit the same amount of carbon dioxide and methane) as the paddy field it will be constructed.

The Project will include schools and universities that focus on ethical and spiritual development as well as academic achievement, and a healthcare network based around a teaching hospital of international standard with the intention of supplementing the medical services currently provided by the government to provide healthcare services, particularly for the poor and underprivileged.

As such, the Maitreya Project organizers are working in tandem with the local, regional and state governments in Uttar Pradesh, India, who have fully supported the project. To this effect, the Kushinagar Special Development Area Authority will support the planned development of the area surrounding the Project.

The total project cost is estimated at $250 million, but the project will develop this impoverished region and will earn a hundredfold more that will be funneled into the Maitreya Project’s historical preservation plans and charities.


^ Maitreya Project engineers on-site

—–==–=–==—–

The Location of the Maitreya Complex

The Maitreya Buddha project was originally concieved to be built in Bodh Gaya, Bihar state, the site of the Buddha’s enlightenment, but due to threat of delays due to red tape, was moved to what was seen to be a more appropriate location, the village of Kushinagar, in Uttar Pradesh state.

Kushinagar is a place of great historical and spiritual significance. It is the place where Shakyamuni (Historical) Buddha passed away and it is predicted to be the birthplace of the next Buddha, Maitreya – the Buddha of Loving-kindness - of whom this temple is dedicated to.


^ The original conception of the Maitreya Buddha statue, then to be located at Bodh Gaya

Recognising the long-term benefits Maitreya Project is bringing to the region, the State Government of Uttar Pradesh is providing, free of charge, 750 acres of mainly agricultural land in Kushinagar.


^ A view of the Maitreya Project land site, currently rice paddy

Indeed, the Project itslef will be located adjacent to the ancient Mahaparinirvana Temple, commemorating the Buddha’s passing, the ancient Ramabhar Stupa, commemorating the Buddha’s cremation site, as well as several equally old and older Hindu temples. It is predicted that the pilgrimage, tourism and development capital that will flow into this region because of this project will created sustainable income for the restoration, refurbishment and maintinance of these ancient sacred sites.

Surrounding the complex is the Kushinagar Special Development Area, designed as a sustainable development entity that will coordinate the various organizations involved in the project and surrounding tourist and general development that will come with the project.

-=—-=—=–

The Kushinagar Special Development Area

The Maitreya Project and the Uttar Pradesh have worked together to create the Kushinagar Special Development Area (KSDA), an additional area of 7.5 kilometres surrounding the Maitreya Project site.

Municipal bylaws and planning regulations have now been adopted to protect the KSDA from the kind of opportunism that is often seen in communities of emerging economic development. Maitreya Project has representation on the legal bodies governing the KSDA as well as the work of monitoring the development of the region will be ongoing.

It is within the KSDA that Maitreya Project will implement its extensive healthcare and education programmes.

—–==–=–==—–

Maitreya Project Preliminary Site Plan

Maitreya Project’s lead architects, Aros Ltd., have drawn up a preliminary proposed plan for the beautiful 750 acre Kushinagar site.

Main features being:

  • The Ceremonial Gateway & Maitreya Statue Sanctuary will lead visitors to the 500ft/152m Maitreya Buddha statue.
  • The Maitreya Buddha Statue will sit on the Throne Building containing temples, prayer halls, exhibition halls, a museum, library and audio-visual theatre.
  • The Hospital and Healthcare Centre will be the hub of Maitreya Project’s public healthcare programmes. The development of these programmes will begin with primary care clinics in the communities of the Kushinagar Special Development Area. Over the years, the medical services will be developed and expanded to meet the needs of many communities. A complete healthcare network will be developed to provide medical services that are centred around a teaching hospital of international standard. The healthcare system will primarily serve the poor and under-privileged, even in remote parts of the area.
  • The Centre of Learning, will eventually serve students from primary to university levels of education.
  • The Meditation Park will be a secluded area next to the ancient Mahaparinirvana Temple, which commemorates Buddha Shakyamuni’s passing away from our world, the ancient Ramabhar Stupa, commemorating the Buddha’s holy cremation site, and monasteries and temples belonging to many different traditions of Buddhism that include both modern facilities and ancient ruins.


^ A View from the Maitreya Project Park

All of these features will be set in beautifully landscaped parks with meditation pavilions, beautiful water fountains and tranquil pools. All of the buildings and outdoor features will contain an extensive collection of inspiring sacred art.


^ A view of the temple from the gardens surrounding the site

—–==–=–==—–

The Statue of the Maitreya Buddha

The center of the Maitreya Project, of course, is the bronze plate statue of the Maitreya Buddha itself. Rising 500ft/152m in height, the statue will sit on a stone throne temple building located in an enclosed sanctuary park.

-=—-=—=–

The Living Wall:

Surrounding the Maitreya Buddha statue is a four-storey halo of buildings called the “Living Wall.” This ring of buildings contains accomadation for the complex’s monks and workers as well as rooms for functions ancillary to the statue and throne building.

The wall also serves two additional important functions. In light of cross-border Islamist terrorist attacks against Indian holy sites in Ayodhya, Akshardham and Jama Masjid, the Living Wall also is designed to be a security cordon eqivalent to a modern castle wall, staffed with security personnel and designed to withstand an attack from 200 heavily armed raiders.


^ Prerendering of the Statue showing the location of the living wall, main gate, paths and garden areas.

The final major function it performs is that of the boundary for the enclosed sanctuary area of landscaped gardens, pools and fountains for meditation directly surrounding the Maitreya statue. The entry to the enclosed sanctuary and the Maitreya statue will be serviced by a main gate.


^ The tree and stupa lined paths to the ceremonial gate, which is the entrance to the sanctuary.

Passing the ceremonial gate, landscaped paths allow devotes to do Pradakshina (circumambulation) of the Maitreya Statue.


^ The terraced circumambulation paths, with the gate in the background.

Within the sanctuary, the gardens provide a place for relaxing, resting, and meditating, with educational artwork depicting the Buddha’s life.


^ A view towards the statue from one of these stupa lined terraces.

Walking further inward, the is Maitreya Statue and Throne Temple, surrounded by tranquil ponds and fountains that will cool the area in the intense Indian summer.


^ The Maitreya statue and throne surrounded by the tranquil ponds containing Buddha statues of the meditation sanctuary.

-=—-=—=–

The Throne Temple:

The “seat” of the statue is itelf a fully functioning 17-storey temple roughly 80m x 50m in size. The building will contain two very large prayer halls, as well as meditation and meeting rooms, a library and facilities to deal with the anticipated annual influx of 2 million visitors.


^ The entrance to the throne building with the Maitreya Buddha statue resting upon the lotus on top

Pilgrims will enter the throne temple through the giant lotus that supports the Maitreya Buddha statue’s feet. The throne temple contains several entrance rooms that contain works of art on the Buddha’s life and teachings.


^ The first major prayer hall of throne building, containing works of art on the Buddha.

Continuing inward is the cavernous main auditorium of the Maitreya Temple containing the Sanctum Sanctorum which in Indian architectural tradition is the innermost most sacred room where the actual shrine is held. This Sanctum Sanctorum is unique in that within it contains two large auditorium temples.

The first temple in the Sanctum Sanctorum is the Temple of the Maitreya Buddha, containing a huge, 12 meter tall statue of the Buddha.


^ Upon entering the Sanctum Sanctorum, the 12 meter tall statue of the Buddha can be glimpsed.

A wall containing 200,000 images of the Buddhas rises up to the throne ceiling over 50 metres above, behind both auditorium temples.


^ A glimpse from the ambulatory of the side walls within the Maitreya Temple and the 1,000 paintings of the Buddhas.

The centerpiece shrine of the Maitreya Temple is the 12 meter tall Maitreya Buddha. Stairs and elevators lead to viewing platforms around the Maitreya Temple, allowing views of the entire room


^ A view of the Maitreya Buddha statue and the wall of the 200,000 images of the Buddha, seen from viewing platforms.

The next biggest shrine in the Sanctum Sanctorum is the Temple of the Shakyamuni Buddha which contains a 10 meter statue of the Shakyamuni (Historical) Buddha. Behind the shrine is the continuation of the wall of 200,000 Buddhas.


^ On a higher level yet again, the Shakyamuni Temple will house a 10 metre (33 ft.) statue of the historical Buddha. The glass rear wall will reveal the wall of 200,000 Buddhas within the Maitreya Temple.


^ Another view of the Shakyamuni Temple.

In Indian architecture, the Sanctum Sanctorum is encircled by a pathway that allows devotees to do Pradakshina (circumambulation) of the shrine. The Maitreya Temple, following this tradition, also has this feature.


^ The main throne building and Pradakshina path where visitors may circumambulate Sanctum Sanctorum of the Maitreya Temple, which can be seen through the doorways on the right

From this area, elevators and staircases will carry visitors to the various other rooms in the 17 storey base, including prayer halls, meditation halls and libraries. Eventually conveying devotees to a large rooftop garden terrace upon which the Maitreya Buddha statue actually rests.

Here, rising into the upper legs of the main statue, is the Merit Field Hall with a 10 meter, 3-dimensional depiction of over 390 Buddhas and Buddhist masters at it’s center. Surrounding this will be 12 individual shrine rooms devoted to particular deities in the Hindu-Buddhist pantheon.


^ The Merit Field Hall with its 10m, 3-D depiction.

From the garden terrace, another bank of elevators will whisk pilgrims to the higher shrine rooms contained in the statue’s torso and head.

-=—-=—=–

The Statue:

The statue will contain 15 individual shrine rooms and have a total height of 152 meters, with the highest shrine room in the statue’s head, at over 140 meters up. This is roughly equivalent in height to a 40-storey skyscraper.


^ A cutaway diagram of the statue-tower.

The statue is itself an engineering marvel. Rather than simply be designed in its massive size, the statue of the Maitreya Buddha was actually reversed-designed from a carved statue only a meter and half in height and the structure’s engineering extrapolated into its current form.


^ The original statue from which the Maitreya Buddha statue tower is extrapolated from was hand carved, and is in the Indian Gupta style.

Moreover, the statue is designed to stand for at least 1,000 years, supporting the Project’s spiritual and social work for at least a millennium. Due to the statue’s millenia-passing lifespan, the huge structure is designed to withstand high winds, extreme temperature changes, seasonal rains, possible earthquakes and floods and environmental pollution.

Extensive research has gone into developing “Nikalium”, the special nickel-aluminum bronze alloy to be used for the outer ’skin’ of the statue designed to withstand the most challenging conditions that could conceivably arise.

As the bronze ’skin’ will expand and contract dramatically due to daily temperature changes, the statue will require special expansion joints that were designed to be not only invisible to the observer, but also in such a way as to protect the internal supports of the statue from water leakage, erosion and corrosion. The material and structural components of the statue are meant to be able to withstand potential unforseen disasters like earthquakes and monsoon flooding.


^ The engineering process of the Buddha statue.

—–==–=–==—–

Construction Status — June, 2007

The Maitreya Project recently passed its first major milestone this month, when, in compliance with the Indian Land Acquistion Act, the State Government of Uttar Pradesh has completed the necessary legal requirements for the acquisition of the 750 acre land site to be made available to the Project.

While there are still permissions and clearances to be obtained, it has now officially given the green light and the full support of the government.

It is expected that the Project will formally break ground either later this year or early 2008, with an expected construction time of five years. The project will employ more than a thousand skilled and semi-skilled workers in the construction phase.

—–==–=–==—–

For more information on this fantastic project, check out

Maitreyaproject.org

Sorry for the length of the post, but I wanted this veritable essay to be a comprehensive introduction to what Maitreya Project organizers aim to literally be the 8th Wonder of the World, and an everlasting symbol of Religious Syncretism, Tolerance, Compassion and most of all, Love.

A cause truely fitting of the Buddha, Shakya Muni Sri Siddharth Gautamaji.

American Buddhist Net

Uttar Pradesh to boast of world’s tallest Buddha statue

Does this sound good to you? Here’s a story about something similar in Australia: Nowra to get its own Kung Fu temple: Australia ABN
____________

Tuesday, 25 March , 2008, 18:25

Lucknow: Decks are being cleared for the installation of the world’s tallest Buddha statue in Kushinagar town of eastern Uttar Pradesh.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati was understood to have directed officials to speed up the acquisition and transfer of 600 acres of land required for the Rs 10 billion project to be funded and undertaken by the global Maitryi Group. Provision of land is UP government’s share in the project.

For more news, analysis click here>> | For more Science and Medicine news click here >>

The project involves installation of a 152-metre-tall bronze statue of Lord Buddha along with a giant meditation centre, an international university, a state-of-art world-class hospital and a museum. The project also envisages an entertainment complex in the neighbourhood that would include an amusement park and a five-star hotel.

Nowra to get its own Kung Fu temple: Australia

The more I read about this temple, the less I like it. See also this. ABN
_______________

There will be a three-tier temple complex, with two pagodas, 500-room hotel, a 500-place kung fu academy. There’ll be some residential subdivision, a 27-hole golf course, herbal medicine, herbal gardens, acupuncture, special massage, and that’s about it.

AM - Saturday, 10 June , 2006 08:24:30
Reporter: John Taylor
ELIZABETH JACKSON: It’s probably the most famous temple in the world.

China’s Shaolin Temple has been made famous through books, films, and TV, because of its legendary kung fu fighting monks.

Now, the Zen Buddhist temple is looking to build another home for its monks, outside Nowra in New South Wales.

A deal to purchase 1,200 hectares will be signed in China today, as our Correspondent, John Taylor, reports.

LINK TO ORIGINAL

JOHN TAYLOR: In the history of kung fu, there is no other place like the Shaolin Temple.

The 1,500-year-old Zen Buddhist monastery in central China is home to fighting monks, made famous in modern times on the big and small screen.

If things go to plan, the monks may be about to set up a lavish home away from home, just south of Nowra.

Greg Watson is Mayor of the Shoalhaven City Council.

GREG WATSON: There will be a three-tier temple complex, with two pagodas, 500-room hotel, a 500-place kung fu academy.

There’ll be some residential subdivision, a 27-hole golf course, herbal medicine, herbal gardens, acupuncture, special massage, and that’s about it.

JOHN TAYLOR: Today in central China’s Henan province Mayor Watson and the Temple’s Abbott are to sign off on the monks’ purchase of a 1,200 hectare property south of Nowra.

Patrick Peng is the Abbott’s representative in Australia.

PATRICK PENG: The Shaolin of course is very well known in China itself, so he like to take this opportunity to try to introduce the Shaolin legacy, the heritage to the rest of the world, through another outlet.

JOHN TAYLOR: The NSW Government is still to give final approval to the project. But speaking in Beijing yesterday, Mayor Greg Watson wasn’t expecting a fight.

GREG WATSON: What happened was, I heard via a Member of Parliament, that the Abbott was looking for a potential location to establish the second Shaolin temple in the world, somewhere in Australia, and I said have I got a deal for the Abbott?

JOHN TAYLOR: Who says religion and big business can’t mix?

The Shaolin Temple already has a performance touring the world, featuring the impressive skills of its fighting monks.

The Abbott’s man in Australia, Patrick Peng, says Shaolin is not just about kung fu.

PATRICK PENG: You know, it’s culture.

JOHN TAYLOR: Well can you have the two together, a tourist attraction and a functioning temple?

PATRICK PENG: Oh yes, in fact, on the contrary. Nowadays many religions, not only just Buddhism, Daoism, they’re all trying to make themselves more relevant to the modern world, and really they’re not exclusive, they’re not just men in the caves, you know.

So what they’re trying to do is to share the philosophies and the lifestyle, the healthy lifestyle, to the world.

ELIZABETH JACKSON: Patrick Peng, who represents the Abbott of the Shaolin Temple in Australia, ending that report from John Taylor.

Thaindian News

Uttar Pradesh to have world’s tallest Buddha statue

March 25th, 2008 - 3:37 pm ICT by admin

Lucknow, March 25 (IANS) Decks are being cleared for the installation of the world’s tallest Buddha statue in Kushinagar town of eastern Uttar Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati was understood to have directed officials to speed up the acquisition and transfer of 600 acres of land required for the Rs.10 billion project to be funded and undertaken by the global Maitryi group.

Proviuion of land is UP government’s share in the project.

The project involves installation of a 152-metre-tall bronze statue of Lord Buddha along with a giant meditation centre, an international university, a state-of-art world-class hospital and a museum. The project also envisages an entertainment complex in the neighbourhood that would include an amusement park and a five-star hotel.

UP Chief Secretary Prashant Kumar Misra presided over a high level meeting of state officials, in which representatives from Maitryi were present here Monday. A presentation on the project was made.

Significantly, the project was initiated during the previous tenure of Chief Minister Mayawati in 2003, after which it was put on the backburner during the Mulayam Singh Yadav regime.

“Since then, it had been hanging fire, so we decided to revive it after Maitryi officials approached us,” Misra told IANS.

He said: “Of the 600 acres required for the project, we need to acquire only about 300 acres while the rest is government land.

“The government had already started the acquisition process. The whole project would not involve any major displacement of people and not more than 70-80 farmers would be involved,” he said.

“We have worked out a handsome rehabilitation package for the farmers who would get displaced on account of the project.”

UP to have world’s tallest Buddha statue

Published: Wednesday, 26 March, 2008, 08:05 AM Doha Time

LUCKNOW: World’s tallest Buddha statue will be installed in Kushinagar town of eastern Uttar Pradesh.
Chief Minister Mayawati has asked officials to speed up acquisition and transfer of 600 acres of land required for the Rs10bn project to be funded and undertaken by the global Maitryi group.
The state government will give the land for the project which involves installation of a 152m tall bronze statue of Lord Buddha along with a giant meditation centre, an international university, a state-of-art hospital and a museum.
The project also envisages an entertainment complex in the neighbourhood that would include an amusement park and a five-star hotel.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Prashant Kumar Misra presided over a high level meeting of state officials, in which representatives from Maitryi were present here on Monday. A presentation on the project was made.
The project was initiated during the previous tenure of Mayawati in 2003, after which it was put on the backburner.
“Since then, it had been hanging fire, so we decided to revive it after Maitryi officials approached us,” Misra said.
“Of the 600 acres required for the project, we need to acquire only about 300 acres while the rest is government land,” he said.- IANS

 

India eNews Logo

From correspondents in Uttar Pradesh, India, 03:33 PM IST

Decks are being cleared for the installation of the world’s tallest Buddha statue in Kushinagar town of eastern Uttar Pradesh.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati was understood to have directed officials to speed up the acquisition and transfer of 600 acres of land required for the Rs.10 billion project to be funded and undertaken by the global Maitryi group.

Proviuion of land is UP government’s share in the project.

The project involves installation of a 152-metre-tall bronze statue of Lord Buddha along with a giant meditation centre, an international university, a state-of-art world-class hospital and a museum. The project also envisages an entertainment complex in the neighbourhood that would include an amusement park and a five-star hotel.

UP Chief Secretary Prashant Kumar Misra presided over a high level meeting of state officials, in which representatives from Maitryi were present here Monday. A presentation on the project was made.

Significantly, the project was initiated during the previous tenure of Chief Minister Mayawati in 2003, after which it was put on the backburner during the Mulayam Singh Yadav regime.

‘Since then, it had been hanging fire, so we decided to revive it after Maitryi officials approached us,’ Misra told IANS.

He said: ‘Of the 600 acres required for the project, we need to acquire only about 300 acres while the rest is government land.

‘The government had already started the acquisition process. The whole project would not involve any major displacement of people and not more than 70-80 farmers would be involved,’ he said.

‘We have worked out a handsome rehabilitation package for the farmers who would get displaced on account of the project.’

India - Uttar Pradesh - Kushinagar Buddhist Site

Kushinagar Buddhist Site

Population : 14,000
Distance : 55km from Gorakhpur

¤ Kushinagar - A Site of Buddhist Parinirvana

KushinagarSituated in Deoria district of eastern Uttar Pradesh, Kushinagara was a small town in the days of the Buddha. But it became famous when the Buddha died here, on his way from Rajgir to Sravasti. His last memorable words were, “All composite things decay. Strive diligently!” This event is known as the ‘Final Blowing-Out’ (Parinirvana) in Buddhist parlance. Since then the place has become a celebrated pilgrim centre. It was the capital of the kingdom of the Mallas, one of the 16 Janapadas (see Sravasti).

¤ Places of Interest

Muktabandhana Stupa
The Muktabandhana Stupa was built by the Mallas just after the Buddha’s death. It is built over the sacred relics of the Buddha himself. The Stupa is also known as Ramabhar Stupa and is 50 ft tall. It is believed that the Stupa was built on the spot where the Buddha was cremated.

Nirvana Stupa
1km west of the Muktabandhana Stupa is the Nirvana Stupa that was built in the days of Ashoka. It was renovated in 1927 by the Burmese Buddhists. In front of the Stupa is the Mahaparinirvana Temple in which is installed a colossal sandstone statue of the Buddha in the reclining position. It was built by the Mathura school of art and was brought to Kushinagar by a Buddhist monk named Haribala during the reign of Kumaragupta (c. a.d.415-454).

Kushinagar
   
Kushinagar

Once in Kushinagar, it appears that time has come to a complete halt. This sleepy town, with its serenity and unassuming beauty, absorbs visitors into a contemplative mood. It is this place that the Buddha had chosen to free himself from the cycles of death and life and, therefore, it occupies a very special space in the heart of every Buddhist.
Location
Kushinagar is situated in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, 51 km off Gorakhpur. The place, which is famous for the Mahaparinirvana (death) of Lord Buddha, has been included in the famous Buddhist trail encompassing Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and Nepal.
Kushinagar is also known as Kasia or Kusinara. The founder of Buddhism, Lord Buddha passed away at this place near the Hiranyavati River and was cremated at the Ramabhar stupa. It was once a celebrated center of the Malla kingdom. Many of its stupas and viharas date back to 230 BC-AD 413. when its prosperity was at the peak. The Mauryan emperor Ashoka added grandeur to this place by getting the magnificent statue of Buddha carved on a single piece of red sandstone. Fa Hien, Huen Tsang, and I-tsing, the three famous Chinese scholar travelers to India, all visited Kushinagar.

With the decline of Buddhism, however, Kushinagar lost its importance and suffered much neglect. It was only in the last century that Lord Alexander Cunningham excavated many important remnants of the main site such as the Matha Kua and Ramabhar stupa. Today, people from all over the world visit Kushinagar. Many national and international societies and groups have established their centers here.

Climate
Like other places in the Gangetic plain, the climate of Kushinagar is hot and humid in the summers (mid-April-mid-September) with Maximum Temperature touching 40-45°C. Winters are mild
and Minimum Temperature in December can go down to around 5°C. Monsoon reaches this region in June and remains here till September

Population
Around 22,35,505 people live here

Language
Hindi and Bhojpuri

 
Places of Interest

Mahaparinirvana Temple
The Mahaparinirvana temple (also known as the Nirvana temple) is the main attraction of Kushinagar. It is a single room structure, which is raised on a platform and is topped by a superstructure, which conforms to the traditional Buddhist style of architecture. The Mahaparinirvana temple houses the world famous 6m (19.68 ft) long statue of the reclining Buddha.

This statue was discovered during the excavation of 1876 by British archaeologists. The statue has been carved out from sandstone and represents the dying Buddha. The figures carved on the four sides of the small stone railing surrounding the statue, show them mourning the death of Lord Buddha. According to an inscription found in Kushinagar, the statue dates back to the 5th century AD.
It is generally believed that Haribala, a Buddhist monk brought the statue of the reclining Buddha to Kushinagar, from Mathura during 5th century, during the period of the Gupta Empire.

Nirvana Stupa
The Nirvana stupa is located behind the Mahaparinirvana temple. British archaeologists discovered this brick structure during the excavation carried out in 1876. Subsequent excavations carried out by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) unearthed a copper vessel, which contained the remains of Lord Buddha apart from precious stones, cowries and a gold coin belonging to the Gupta Empire. The copper vessel bore the inscription that the ashes of Lord Buddha had been interred here.

Mathakuar Shrine
The Mathakuar Shrine is an interesting place to visit in Kushinagar. It is located near the Nirvana stupa. A statue of Buddha made out of black stone was found here. The statue shows Buddha in the Bhumi Sparsha mudra (pose in which Buddha is touching the earth with his fingers). It is believed that Lord Buddha preached his last sermon here before his death.

Ramabhar Stupa
The Ramabhar Stupa (also known as the Mukutabandhana stupa) is a 14.9 m (49 ft) tall brick stupa, which is located at a distance of 1 km from the Mahaparinirvana temple. This stupa is built on the spot where Lord Buddha was cremated in 483 BC. Ancient Buddhist scriptures refer this stupa as the Mukutabandhana stupa. It is said that the Malla rulers, who ruled Kushinagar during the death of Buddha built the Ramabhar stupa.

Modern Stupas
Kushinagar has a number of modern stupas and monasteries, which have been built, by different Buddhist countries. The important shrines worth visiting are the Chinese stupa and the IndoJapan-Sri Lankan Buddhist Centre.

Kushinagar Museum
The Kushinagar Museum (Archaeological Museum) is located near the IndoJapan-Sri Lankan Buddhist Centre. The museum has a collection of artefacts like statues, carved panels etc excavated from various stupas and monasteries in Kushinagar and places around it.

 
Excursion
Gorakhpur
Fifty-one kilometers off Kushinagar is Gorakhpur, an important city of eastern Uttar Pradesh. At Gorakhpur is the Rahul Sanskrityayan Museum, which has an excellent collection of Thanka paintings and relics of the Buddha. The water sports complex at Ramgarh Tal Planetarium and the Gorakhnath Temple in the city are also worth a visit.

Kapilavastu (Piprahwa)
Situated 148 km from Kushinagar and is an important Buddhist pilgrimage. Kapilavastu was the ancient capital of the Sakya clan ruled by Gautama Buddha’s father.

Lumbini
Situated in Nepal at a distance of 122 km from Gorakhpur, Lumbini is the birthplace of Lord Buddha. There are regular buses to the Nepalese border, from where the remaining 26 km has to be covered by private vehicles

How to get there
Airport
The nearest airhead is located at Varanasi from where one can take flights to Delhi, Calcutta, Lucknow, and Patna.

Rail
Kushinagar does not have a railway station. The nearest railway station is at Gorakhpur (51 km), which is the headquarters of Northeastern Railways and linked to important destinations. Some important trains to Gorakhpur are Bombay-Gorakhpur-Bandra Express, New Delhi-Barauni-Vaishali Express, Cochin-Gorakhpur Express, Shaheed Express, Amarnath Express, and Kathgodam Express.

Road
Kushinagar is well connected to other parts of the state of Uttar Pradesh by bus. The distances from places around are : Gorakhpur (51 km), Lumbini (173 km), Kapilavastu (148 km), Sravasti (254 km), and Sarnath (266 km), and Agra (680 km).

BUDDHIST HEARTLAND  

Enlightening Odyssey






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It was a prediction that set it off. Terrified that his son might one day renounce the world to become a great seer, King Suddhodhana of the Shakyas, a small kingdom in the Terai region of Nepal, shielded the young Prince Siddhartha from the evil of the world by keeping him within the confines of his palace, in the embrace of material comforts and loving care. From his very birth in 623 BC, in a garden at Lumbini close to the Shakya capital of Kapilavastu, portent’s revealed that the young man’s fate was sealed for higher things than dealing with the earthly concerns and the business of a king.

It was chance too that rolled the dice in favour of the spiritual world, and Prince Siddhartha was a willing pawn when he rejected his regal life. It was an amazing journey that would transform the deeply troubled prince into the great Buddha, the Enlightened One, culminating in his release from the endless cycle of rebirths, at Bodhgaya in Bihar. His great quest would become the core of an important religious movement.

Buddhism - Charismatic Formula

For kings and commoners, criminals and courtesans, Buddhism had the power and strength to transform their lives forever. This is beautifully illustrated in the legendary commitment to Buddhism of King Ashoka, after the bloody battle of Kalinga in Orissa. The great king was enthusiastic in spreading the Buddha’s message of peace and enlightenment across the length and breadth of his vast empire, reaching from present day Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Bangladesh.

Buddhism was to travel from its home in India’s eastern Gangetic region of Bihar, Bengal and Orissa to encompass Sri Lanka and the countries of South East Asia, then onto the Himalayan countries of Bhutan, Nepal and Tibet, even far-flung Central Asia, China and Japan, under the umbrella of royal patronage and the dedication of its vast community of monks, teachers and artists.

The essence of Buddhism is embodied in the concept of the 4 noble truths and the 3 jewels (Buddha, Dharma, Sangha) via the 8-fold path to salvation and peace Anticipating his death in his 80th year Buddha urged his followers, especially his chosen disciples, to continue his work after his imminent Mahaparnirvana the attaining of nirvana (enlightenment). As a reminder of his difficult journey and its ultimate goal, he prevailed upon them to visit the four important places that were the cornerstones of his great journey - Lumbini, Bodhgaya, Sarnath, and Kushinagar.

The spread of Buddhism down the centuries was to leave in its wake a wealth of symbolic structures, including sculpted caves, stupas (relic shrines), chaityas (prayer halls) viharas (monasteries), mahaviharas (universities) and numerous art forms and religious literature. The arrival of Guru Padamasambhava, in the 8th century, was a major impetus in the spread of Buddhism in the Himalayan region.

Today, both pilgrims and tourists can enjoy the special appeal of these myriad experiences, in the Buddhist Heartland of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, and Nepal. From the moment of his birth, his teachings, spiritual struggle, attainment of enlightenment, great meditations, and message of peace and non-violence, are as relevant to our life and times as it was in his day.

Buddhism - Jewels of the Lotus

Almost a hundred years later there emerged various schools of Buddhist thought evolving somewhat from the Buddha’s original precepts. The most prominent amongst these were the Mahayana School, the Theravada School (based on the old Hinayana School) which flourished in Sri Lanka and established itself quite quickly in many South East Asian countries, and the Vajrayana School with its Tantric features, which spread to the Himalayan regions of Bhutan, Nepal and Tibet.

Lumbini, Sarnath, Bodhgaya and Kushinagar are the primary pilgrimage places associated with the life and teachings of the Lord Buddha. There are numerous other sites where the Buddha and the saints that followed travelled during his life after his transformation, which are held in deep veneration. Visitors can travel through this Buddhist Heartland today, to savour the splendid beauty and great appeal of Buddhism.

FOOTSTEPS OF LORD BUDDHA

The greatest impetus to Buddha’s teachings came from the Indian King Ashoka who went on a great pilgrimage visiting the important sites that are directly associated with his life, in the Footsteps of Lord Buddha. Primary amongst these holy places are Lumbini in Nepal, and Bodhgaya, Sarnath and Kushinagar in India. The international Buddhist community has been active in supporting these important religious centres. There are other places of lesser significance on the Footsteps of Lord Buddha visitor circuit associated closely with Buddha’s life. Amongst these are Buddha’s monsoon retreats of Vaishali, Rajgir and Sravastii in India, and his early home at Tilaurakot in Kapilavastu Nepal.

Primary Patronage

Lumbini. Lumbini in southern Nepal is where Queen Mayadevi gave birth to Prince Siddhartha. It is just a short distance from the Shakya capital of Kapilavastu. Pilgrimages focus on the sacred garden which contains the site of the birth, the Mayadevi temple, the Pashkarni pond and the Ashoka pillar. Designed by Japanese architect Kenzo Tange, the sacred garden of Lumbini is a World Heritage Site with monasteries from many Buddhist nations. It is recognised as a supreme pilgrimage site and symbol of world peace.

Bodhgaya. It was in Bodhgaya in Bihar, India that Prince Siddhartha found Enlightenment (nirvana) under the bodhi tree after meditating for 49 days. No longer a bodhisattva (mentor), he became Lord Buddha, the Enlightened One.

Primary points of homage are the Mahabodhi Temple, the Vajrasan throne donated by King Ashoka, the holy Bodhi Tree, the Animeshlochana chaitya, the Ratnachankramana, the Ratnagaraha, the Ajapala Nigrodha Tree, the Muchhalinda Lake and the Rajyatna Tree. The spiritual home of all Buddhists, devotees from many Buddhist countries have built temples around the complex in their characteristic architectural styles. Bodhgaya today is a vibrant and inspiring tourist attraction.

Sarnath. Buddha gave his first sermon at Sarnath after achieving enlightenment, about 10 km from the ancient holy city of Varanasi. The sermon, setting in motion the wheel of the teaching (dharamchakrapravartna) revealed to his followers the 4 noble truths, the concept of the 3 jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha via the 8 fold path, for inner peace and enlightenment. It was here that the Buddha established his first disciples (sangha) to promote his new doctrine. The splendid Dhamekha Stupa at Sarnath was originally erected by King Ashoka, as was the famous lion capital pillar, now the proud symbol of India.

Kushinagar. At Kushinagar close to Gorakhpur in eastern Uttar Pradesh, India en route to Kapilavastu, Lord Buddha fell ill and left this world in 543 BC. His mortal remains were preserved in eight commemorative chortens, and then further distributed by King Ashoka into 84,000 stupas across his kingdom and beyond. Important places to see here are the Mukatanabandhana stupa and the Gupta period reclining Buddha statue in red sandstone.

Mobilising Mantras & Sutras

The Buddha preached his last sermon before his death at Vaishali in Bihar, 60 km away from its capital Patna. It was here that he told his disciple Ananda about his imminent demise. The Second Buddhist Council was held in Vaishala about 110 years later.

About 70 km from Bodhgaya, Rajgir was Buddha’s monsoon retreat for 12 years whilst he spread his doctrine. It was at the holy Griddhikuta Hill that he expounded the precepts of his Lotus Sutra and the Perfection of Wisdom Sutra. The Saptaparni Caves set on Vaibhar Hill were the venue of the First Buddhist Council, held to compile the teachings of the Buddha in its authentic form, after his death. The world-renowned university of Nalanda is another important landmark site.

About 150 km from the city of Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh, Shravasti was Buddha’s favourite rainy season retreat where he Buddha performed his first miracle.

The Ties That Bind

Around Lumbini in Nepal are seven other pilgrimage sites. The first thirty years of Buddha’s life were spent at Tilaurakot in Kapilavastu in his father’s home, 27 km west of Lumbini in Nepal. The well-preserved city foundations are evocative of former times, and the casket recovered from the original stupa is preserved in the nearby museum. About 34 km northeast of Lumbini is Devdaha whose Koliya people are considered to be the maternal tribesmen of the Buddha. The forest of Sagarhawa lies northwest of Niglihawa. Another important site is the stupa at Kudan, 5 km from Tilaurakot, where Buddha’s father King Suddhodhana met him after his enlightenment.

LIVING BUDDHISM

The trans-Himalayan regions of Bhutan, India, and Nepal are strongly rooted in the Buddhist faith. In Dharamsala, in the Kangra Valley, lives his Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of all Tibetan Buddhists. Visitors can enjoy Living Buddhism experiences throughout the region, whether as a student of Buddhism, meditation and yoga, or as a layperson attracted by the vibrant culture, people and festivals.

Eastern Himalayas-The Lotus Blooms Still

Kathmandu Valley is an important Buddhist pilgrimage circuit with 15 major sites. It is a living center of Buddhist learning with many new monasteries and schools that attract funding and visitors from all over the world. The most important Living Buddhism sites are Swayambhunath and Bodhnath stupas, both with strong links to Tibet. Protected as World Heritage Sites, they are the most revered spiritual sites in the country, attracting thousands of pilgrims. Many of the indigenous Newar people of Kathmandu practice a unique form of Buddhism, unrelated to Tibet.

In the northern regions of Nepal, Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism continues to flourish and there are many monasteries and sacred sites. Many of these are in Mustang and Dolpa districts. The important monasteries Thyangboche, Thame, Chiwong and Thupten Choeling are in the Everest region of Solu Khumbu.

In the Buddhist kingdom of Bhutan, HM the King is considered equal in status to the religious leader, the Jekhenpo. The depth and vibrancy of the Buddhist faith is reflected in everyday life. Devotees revere Guru Padmasambhava as the second Buddha. Bhutan’s monastery fortresses (dzongs) are an integral feature of governance, and the repository of precious treasures of ancient literature, scriptures and art. The great dzongs of Thimphu, Paro, Punakha and Wangdi Phodrang, amongst many others, offer a fabulous journey for both pilgrim and tourist to explore Bhutan’s colourful history and spiritual splendour. An added temptation for the visitor is the fabulous repertoire of cultural activities associated with the Kingdom’s renowned festivals (tsechus).

A short distance from Paro is the renovated Taktsang monastery, the venerated location of Guru Rimpoche’s (Padmasambhava) deep meditation before subduing evil demons. Kyichu Lakhang in Paro and Jambay Lakhang in Bhumtang are amongst Bhutan’s most important and oldest Buddhist sites. The famous tsechu festivities are marked by prayers and religious dances, colourful costumes, morality tales, and invocations of protection against evil forces. Dungtse Lakhang is reputed for its fabulous collection of religious paintings .The spectacular Punakha dzong is the winter seat of the monkhood, and houses numerous sacred artifacts and important temples.

Living Buddhism flourishes in northern India, home of the Dalai Lama. Set amongst the splendid heights of the Eastern Himalayas in Arunachal Pradesh is the remote Tawang Monastery. Amongst the native inhabitants, the Monpas and the Sherdupkens people keep alive the Buddhist faith from ancient times. This 17th century monastery is the largest of its kind in India and the second largest in Asia. The hill town of Bomdila offers local handicrafts and religious artifacts, and ancient monasteries

Other North East states also have Buddhist attractions. In the shadow of Mt Khangchendzonga, Buddhism flourishes in the sacred landscape of Sikkim which is dotted with 107 monasteries and many sacred stupas. Amongst the most important are Rumtek, the home of the Kagyupa sect, Pemayangtse, Tashding and Enchey. The monastery at Chungtang marks the footprint of Guru Padamasambhava when he rested en route to Tibet. Recently, the world’s tallest statue of Guru Rinpoche has been erected at Namchi. The people celebrate their faith during the chaam (masked) dances at the great festivals.

Surviving Buddhist Enclaves

Bangladesh is now largely Muslim, but the country has important pockets of Buddhist communities that date back to the 7th century, especially in the region of Chittagong, the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Cox’s Bazaar, Noakhali and Barisal. There are at least 50 Buddhist settlements surviving from the 8-12th century in the Mainamati-Lalmai range at Tipera, Laksham and Comilla

ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY

The great journey of Buddhism throughout its 2,500-year history has manifested itself in a profusion of creative energy in its art, archaeology and architecture. These include beautifully painted holy caves, statues and sculpted heads, bas reliefs, mandalas, thangkas (religious paintings) and frescos, stupas and chortens, fine chaityas, viharas, mahaviharas and temples that offer the traveller cross-border cultural pickings that are as enriching as they are moving.

The earliest form of Buddhism had no iconoclastic roots. Buddha himself was regarded as a teacher not a God. When Buddha attained nirvana he was represented only in the form of symbols such as the lotus, the bo (peepul) tree, and the wheel.

Buddha as an icon emerged through the influence of the Mahayana School of Buddhism, and the mystical and highly symbolic Tantric form of the Vajrayana School. Vajrayana culture flourished at Bodhgaya, Nalanda and Vikramshila around the 8-9 BC. Buddhist Nalanda enjoyed the patronage of several dynasties of kings but was annihilated by the Turks in the 12th century. Tantric ritual and mysticism relied heavily on sutras and tantras - secret practices linked with the mandala (magical diagram). It saw the inclusion of occult concepts woven intricately into the rapidly expanding pantheon of Buddha images of gods and goddesses.

The Dharma and the Kings of old Bengal

Bangladesh enjoyed the fruits of early Buddhist thought and art. Buddhism received enormous support during the Pala, Chandra and Deva rulers, devout Buddhists, who were responsible for erecting a cavalcade of commemorative monuments. Amongst them was the important university of Paharpur, now archaeological remains about 300 km from Dhaka. Along with Nalanda University in Bihar, India it was an important centre of Buddhist teaching. Other important archeological sites in Bangladesh are at Mahastangar, Comila, Mainamati, and Ramu.

Pillars, Sculpted Caves and the Pledge of a King

The earliest form of Buddhist architecture is visible in the sculpted caves, monastic retreats that were in effect temples of great spirituality. The caves at Udaygiri, Ratnagiri and Lalitagiri in Orissa and the Barabar caves in Bihar are an excellent example of how the art form developed. At Dhauli, the site of the great battle of Kalinga fought by King Ashoka, 8 km from Bhubaneswar, stands Ashoka’s rock edict revealing his pledge to become a Buddhist.

Stupas, Chortens, Chaityas, Viharas and Dzongs

The splendour of the stupas at Sarnath, Bodhgaya, Bodhnath, Nalanda and other important Buddhist sites are an evocative message of Buddha’s teachings. The Dhamekha stupa at Sarnath is a cylindrical structure dating to the golden age of the Guptas (320 AD). It features the typical floral design on stone of Gupta workmanship. Nepal’s Swayambhunath features traditional Nepalese architectural design with its tall steeple mounting the dome, representing the 13 Buddhist heavens.

Chortens and viharas, stupas in miniature, were originally meant to preserve the relics of the Buddha or great Buddhist teachers. Excellent examples of the early viharas were those at Vaishali, Rajgir and Shravasti. Some of the most powerful mahaviharas were Nalanda and Vikramshila in Bihar, India and Paharpur in Bangladesh.

In Bhutan the great dzongs were ideal for keeping precious Buddhist treasures and also as monastic retreats thanks to their isolation and invincibility. These imposing structures with their tapering walls, courtyards and galleries have been created with traditional designs handed down verbally from generation to generation, No nails mar their creation.

Buddhist Centres of Learning

With the advent of the Mahayana school, the world-renowned university of Nalanda became an important centre for Buddhist learning, along with Pahapur, attracting scholars from around the known world. Nalanda enjoyed the patronage of several dynasties of kings but was annihilated by the Turks in the 12th century. It’s an amazing experience walking across the vast grounds of the ruins with its great stupa and other monastic structures.

Sculptures & Paintings - Messengers of the Buddha

The first images of Buddha were formed at Gandhara and show decidedly Hellinistic features (defined by drapery and hairstyle) due to the trade and cultural links with Mediterranean Europe at the time. With the emergence of the Mathura school, close to Agra, the features of the Buddha became more indigenous, inspired by the traditional yakshis and yakshas sculptural forms. In Bhutan, and Nepal the elements of the highly symbolic Vajrayana Buddhist style of iconography, so popular in the 10th-11th century, were however discontinued around the 14th century in exchange for a less complex range of artistic vision but which still retained its vibrancy and colourful splendour.

The massive Mahasthangarh archeological remains (240 km from Dhaka) throw light on the development of Buddhist art and architectural leanings in Bangladesh. This fortified city of the 3rd century BC, extending over an 8 km radius, is the earliest documented urban civilization of Bangladesh. Within easy reach are the Buddhist ruins of Govind Bhita, Gokul Medh Stupa and the Vasu Vihara monastery. The greatest collection of early Pala sculptures have been found in the Paharpur monastic complex at the central temple of the renowned Somapura Mahavihara.

At the tomb of Saint Shah Sultan Mahi Swar Balkhi, were discovered 40 bronze statues representing Buddhist deities, and terracotta plaques with scenes from the Ramayana. The Mainamati Museum houses an extensive range of finds from these Buddhist sites. The Salban Vihara in the Mainamati-Lalmai hills has a complex of 115 cells around a central courtyard with its cruciform temple facing the gateway complex, resembles the Paharpur monastery. Kotila Mura houses three stupas representing the holy Trinity of Buddhism - the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. From Rupban Mura was recovered an early standing Buddha in abhaya mudra.

The yellow-bronze statuary of Bhutan reflects influences in bronze-casting from the craftsman who settled here from the eastern Tibetan province of Kham, in the 16th century. Bhutanese painters are still sought after to decorate religious buildings all over the region.

The splendid innovation in the use of colour and expressive elements of Buddhist art down the ages is amply recorded in the fabulous thangkas or religious paintings of Bhutan, Nepal, Tibet and the trans-Himalayan regions of India. Objects of veneration and an aid to meditation, thangkas are traditional scroll paintings on cotton cloth with vegetable and precious mineral dyes. Buddhas, Boddhisatvas, Taras and numerous estoteric subjects reflect the artist’s vision of his Buddhist world. Embellishments with the lotus motif and themes from the Jataka Tales (lives of the Buddha) are a recurring form of imagery and inspiration for paintings.

The fantastic range of Buddhist art and archaeology in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal, carries the visitor on a splendid journey that marks some of the most evocative and dynamic aspects of the Buddhist faith. Time and tide have worked upon the measures of the emerging artistic trends, but at the core of it remain the Buddha’s basic tenets - of self-discipline and balance as a means to the ultimate goal of the human being - the release from the endless cycle of rebirth-pain and suffering and finding the great peace.

Giant Face-lift of World’s Tallest Buddha Statue
2001.04.18 16:25:03

   CHENGDU, April 17 (Xinhuanet) – Looking through the cobweb-shaped platforms wrapped around the head and chest of a 71 meter-tall  seated Buddha statue, the backs of repair experts’ are seen while  they are busy painting dark-red clay, which will be the new  lipstick on the Buddha’s huge mouth.
   Like a slow motion, another expert with a safety rope is sent  down in mid-air from the base of the 8 meter-long middle finger of the statue’s left hand to the statue’s 8.5 meter-high flat instep  of the left foot, where 100 people could sit. 
   This is just one scene of an ongoing facelift project on the 1, 280 year-old Buddha statue in Leshan, a city in southwest China’s  Sichuan Province.
   Carving of the Buddha started in 713 A.D. and was completed in  803 A.D., in the prosperous period of the Tang Dynasty (618-907).
   The statue was included in the World Cultural Heritage List  under the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural  Organization (UNESCO) in 1996.
   The Buddha statue, which sits on a cliff overlooking the  merging of the three rivers: Minjiang, Qingyijiang and Daduhe. The statue is 71 meters from top to bottom and 28 meters from left to  right. It is 18 meters higher than the standing Buddha statue at  Bamian Valley, Afghanistan, once thought to be the highest of its  kind in the world.
   Over the past 1,000 years, erosion has become a major threat to the statue. Owning to damage by natural environment changes and  human activities, six major repairs on the giant Buddha statue  have been carried out since ancient times.
   Before the largest repair project, which was initiated early  this month, Xinhua reporters visited the famous sitting Maitreya,  which looked in need of immediate repair and attention. 
   ”Some coiled bobs on the head of the statue fell down, weed  coated on its surface rocks, and the face was darkened,” the  reporters recalled.
   But the reporters visited it again this week and it looks very  shiny and new after two weeks of repair.
   The 1,000 color-faded bobs on the Buddha’s head have been  painted black, the drainage system has been dredged and the big  crack going from the right eye to the back of its head  has been  fixed. 
   ”The crack use to cause the Buddha to burst into tears on rainy days,” said Zeng Zhiliang, an engineer of ancient architecture,  who climbed up onto the 10-story-high statue everyday to conduct  repair work.
   When the reporters followed Zeng to have a closer look and  touch the Buddha’s cheek, they could feel the smoothness and  brightness of the repaired surface of its’ face. 
   The black spots on the face of the Buddha, caused by erosion  have disappeared after a thorough cleaning,” Zeng said.
   At the Buddha’s neck, which 60 meters high from the base of the statue, an expert is using a small hammer to carefully knock  mantlerocks, rocks which have become loose on the statue due to  erosion, away from the statue surface. With a safety rope, the  expert is crouching in the narrow space of the platform  constructed around the statue. 
   After knocking it free, he has to use a brush and water to wash the spot and piece it up with repair material. To achieve the  perfect result, this procedure has to be repeated three or four  times.
   According to Zeng, the experts also take photos on the  mantlerocks in order to set up archives on the statue’s original  form and the repair work done. 
   The most difficult parts in the face-lift are the giant facial  features, Zeng said, for example, the Buddha’s nose is the  combined size of several persons. 
   ”If there is no accurate technique and skills, harmonious  proportionment can be hardly realized,” he told the reporters.
   Tourists to the statue are also interested in asking questions  about the repair work. 
   ”How do you mix the face color of the Buddha,” asked Ney Johnn, a German tourist. 
   Zeng’s answer is that the statue was carved out of red  gritstone and covered by skin-color clay.
   ”Why don’t you use chemical paint as my country did on some  historical relics?” Johnn said. 
   Natural repair material, in the same color of the statue, is   being used, Zeng said, adding that it is a mixture of rocks,  charcoal, hemp and lime. 
   This is in accordance with China’s law on cultural relics that  chemical materials or cement are banned for repairing relics.
   Chinese leaders have paid close attention to the repair work.  The repair plan was made by the State Administration of Cultural  Heritage and seven universities and related cultural relics  protection research institutes across China. 
   The face-lift project has aroused great attention at home and  overseas. The UNESCO has sent experts to the repair site, the  World Bank has provided considerable loans and foreign media  coverage with Time magazine and New York Times being contacted to  cover the event.      
   A massive petition signing has been staged here to call for  efforts to be made to protect the statue. So far, more than 10,000 tourists signed their names on a scroll of silk 71 meters long.
   The Buddha statue management center said the drive has received a donation of over 300,000 yuan (about 36,000 US dollars) from  people from all walks of life.
   The first phase of the repair work will be completed by the end of April. An additional investment of 250 million yuan (about 30  million US dollars) will be used for the further repair on the  statue as well as a number of projects to build roads and highways and control pollution in the area. 
   Experts suggested that the statue should be inspected and  repaired every five years after this project is completed.   Enditem
 

Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Ancient India

CHAPTER 4

Reformers and Their Fate

This is a typed bound copy consisting of 87 pages. The Ambatta Sutta starts at page 69 of the manuscript and after page 70, pages are numbered from A to Z. The beginning of page 71 starts with Lohikka Sutta.—Editors.

1. Aryan Society. II. Buddha and Reform. III. I

It was Sir T. Madhava Raw who speaking of Hindu Society of his time said :

The longer one lives, observes, and thinks, the more deeply does he feel that there is no community on the face of the earth which suffers less from political evils and more from self-inflicted or self-accepted or self-created, and therefore avoidable evils, than the Hindu Community.

This view expresses quite accurately and without exaggeration the necessity of social reform in Hindu Society.

The first Social Reformer and the greatest of them all is Gautama Buddha. Any history of Social Reform must begin with him and no history of Social Reform in India will be complete which omits to take account of his great achievements.

Siddhartha, surname Gautama, was born in the Sakya clan a.t Kapilvastu in Northern India, on the borders of Nepal in 563 B.C. Tradition says he was a prince. He received education fit for a prince, was married and had a son. Oppressed by the evils and misery then prevalent in the Aryan Society he renounced the world at the age of twenty-nine and left his home in search for truth and deliverance. He became a mendicant and studied with two distinguished teachers, but finding that their teachings did not satisfy him he left them and became an ascetic. He gave up that also as being futile. By hard thinking he got insight into things and as a result of this insight he formulated his own

Dhamma. This was at the age of thirty-five. The remainder of his eighty years he spent in spreading his Dhamma and founding and administering an order of monks. He died about the year 483 B.C. at Kusinara surrounded by his devoted followers.

To the carrying out of his mission, the Buddha devoted all his days after the achievement of enlightenment. His time was divided between feeding the lamp of his own spiritual life by solitary meditation—just as Jesus spent hours in lonely prayer—and active preaching to large audiences of his monks, instructing the more advanced in the subtle points of inner development, directing the affairs of the Order, rebuking breaches of discipline, confirming the faithful in their virtue, receiving deputation, carrying on discussions with learned opponents, comforting the sorrowful, visiting kings and peasants, Brahmins and outcasts, rich and poor. He was a friend of publicans and sinners, and many a public harlot, finding herself understood and pitied, gave up her evil ways to take refuge in the Blessed One“. Such a life demanded a variety of moral qualities and social gifts, and among others a combination of democratic sentiments with an aristocratic Savoir Faire which is seldom met with. In reading the dialogues one can never forget that Gotama had the birth and upbringing of an aristocrat. He converses not only with Brahmins and pundits but with princes and ministers and kings on easy and equal terms. He is a good diner-out, with a fund of anecdotes and apparently a real sense of humour, and is a welcome quest at every house. A distinguished Brahmin is pictured as describing him thus :

The venerable Gotama is well born on both sides, of pure descent….. is handsome, pleasant to look upon, inspiring trust, gifted with great beauty of complexion, fair in colour, fine in presence, stately to behold, virtuous with the virtue of the Arhats, gifted with goodness and virtue and with a pleasant voice and polite address, with no passion of lust left in him nor any fickleness of mind. He bids all men welcome, is congenial, conciliatory, not supercillious, accessible to all, not backward in conversation. ‘ But what appealed most to the India of his time, and has appealed most to India through the ages, is expressed by the Brahmin in these words :

The monk Gotama has gone forth into the religious life, giving up the great clan of his relatives, giving up much money and gold, treasure both buried and above ground. Truly while he was still a young man, without a grey hair on his head, in the beauty of his early manhood he went forth from the household life into the homeless state.

Such a life as his, demanded not only pleasant manners, sympathy and kindness, but firmness and courage. When the occasion required it, he could be calmly severe with those who worked evil for the Order. Physical pain, he bore not only with equanimity but with no diminution of his inner joy. Courage also was needed and was found ; as, for example, in the Buddha’s calm attitude during Devadatta’s various attempts to assassinate him, in facing threats of murder, and in the conversion of the famous bandit in the Kingdom of Kosala, whom all the countryside feared, and whom the Buddha visited, alone and unarmed, in his lair, changing him from a scourge of the kindorn to a peaceful member of the Order. Neither pain, danger, nor insults marred his spiritual peace. When he was reviled he reviled not again. Nor was he lacking in tender thoughtfulness for those who needed his comfort and support.

He was beloved of all. Repeatedly he is described or describes himself, as one born into the world for the good of the many, for the happiness of the many, for the advantage, the good, the happiness of gods and men, out of compassion for the world.

He left an indelible mark on the Aryan Society and although his name has gone out of India the impression of his teaching still remains.

His religion spread like wild fire. It soon became the religion of the whole of India. But it did not remain confined to India. It reached every corner of the then known world. All races accepted it. Even the Afghans were once Buddhists. It did not remain confined to Asia. There is evidence to show that Buddhism was the religion of Celtic Britain. [f15]  What was the cause of this rapid spread of Buddhism? 0n this point what Prof. Hopkins has said is worth quoting. This is what he says:

The cause, then, of the rapid spread of Buddhism at the beginning of its career lies only in the conditions of its teaching and the influential backing of its founder. It was the individual Buddha that captivated men ; it was the teaching that emanated from him that fired enthusiasm ; it was his position as an aristocrat that made him acceptable to the aristocracy, his magnetism that made him the idol of the people. From every page stands out the strong, attractive personality of this teacher and winner of hearts. No man ever lived so godless yet so godlike. Arrogating to himself no divinity, despairing of future bliss, but without fear as without hope, leader of thought but despising lovingly the folly of the world, exalted but adored, the universal brother, he wandered among men, simply, serenely, with gentle irony subduing them that opposed him, to congregation after congregation speaking with majestic sweetness, the master to each, the friend of all. His voice was singularly vibrant and eloquent; his very tones convinced the hearer, his looks inspired awe. From the tradition it appears that he must have been one of those whose personality alone suffices to make a man not only a leader but also a god to the hearts of his fellows. When such a one speaks he obtains hearers. It matters little what he says, for he influences the motions, and bends whoever listens to his will. But if added to this personality, if encompassing it. there be the feeling in the minds of others that what this man teaches is not only a variety, but the very hope of their salvation ; if for the first time they recognise in his words the truth that makes of slaves free men, of classes a brotherhood, then it is not difficult to see wherein lies the lightning like speed with which the electric current passes from heart to heart. Such a man was Buddha, such was the essential of his teaching: and such was the inevitable rapidity of Buddhistic expansion and the profound influence of the shock that was produced by the new faith upon the moral consciousness of Buddha’s people.

To understand the great reform, which he brought about by his teaching, it is necessary to have some idea of the degraded condition of the Aryan civilisation at the time when Buddha started on the mission of his life.

The Aryan Community of his time was steeped in the worst kind of debauchery: social, religious and spiritual.

To mention only a few of the social evils, attention may be drawn to gambling. Gambling had become as widespread among the Aryans as drinking.

Every king had a hall of gambling attached to his palace. Every king had an expert gambler in his employment as a companion to play with. King Virat had in his employment Kank as an expert gambler. Gambling was not merely a pastime with kings. They played with heavy stakes. They staked kingdoms, dependents, relatives, sla.ves, servants. [f16]  King Nala staked everything in gambling with Paskkar and lost everything. The only thing he did not stake was himself and his wife Damayanti. Nala had to go and live in the forest as a beggar. There were kings who went beyond Nala. The Mahabharat[f17]  tells how Dharma the eldest of the Pandavas gambled and staked everything, his brothers and also his and their wife Draupadi. Gambling was a matter of honour with the Aryans and any invitation to gamble was regraded as an injury to one’s honour and dignity. Dharma gambled with such disastrous consequences although he was warned beforehand. His excuse was that he was invited to gamble and that as a man of honour he could not decline such an invitation.

This vice of gambling was not confined to kings. It had infected even the common folk. Rig-Veda contains lamentations of poor Aryan ruined by gambling. The habit of gambling had become so common in Kautilya’s time that there were gambling houses licensed by the king from which the king derived considerable revenue.

Drinking was another evil which was rampant among the Aryans. Liquors were of two sorts Soma and Sura. Soma was a sacrificial wine. The drinking of the Soma was in the beginning permitted only to Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas. Subsequently it was permitted only to Brahmins and Kshatriyas. The Vaishyas were excluded from it and the Shudras were never permitted to taste it. Its manufacture was a secret known only to the Brahmins. Sura was open to all and was drunk by all. The Brahmins also drank Sura. Shukracharya[f18]  the priest to the Asuras drank so heavily that in his drunken state he gave the life-giving Mantrasknown to him only and with which he used to revive the Asuras killed by the Devas— to Katch the son of Brahaspati who was the priest of the Devas. The Mahabharat mentions an occasion when both Krishna and Arjuna were dead drunk. That shows that the best among the Aryan Society were not only not free from the drink habit but that they drank heavily. The most shameful part of it was that even the Aryan women were addicted to drink. For instance Sudeshna[f19]  the wife of king Virat tells her maid Sairandhri to go to Kichaka’s palace and bring Sura as she was dying to have a drink. It is not to be supposed that only queens indulged in drinking. The habit of drinking was common among women of all classes and even Brahmin women were not free from it. [f20]  That liquor and dancing was indulged in by the Aryan women is clear from the Kausitaki Grihya Sutra 1. 1 1-12, which says, Four or eight women who are not widowed after having been regaled with wine and food are to dance for four times on the night previous to the wedding ceremony.”

Turning to the Aryan Society it was marked by class war and class degradation. The Aryan Society recognised four classes, the Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras. These divisions were not merely horizontal divisions, all on a par with each other in the matter of social relationship. These divisions, had become vertical, one above the other. Being placed above or below there was both jealousy and rivalry among the four classes. This jealousy and rivalry had given rise even to enmity. This enmity was particularly noticeable between the two highest classes, namely, the Brahmins and the Kshatriyas and there was a regular class war between the two, so intense that it would delight the heart of any Marxian to read the descriptions thereof. Unfortunately there is no detailed history of this class war between the Brahmins and the Kshatriyas. Only a few instances have been recorded. Vena, Pururavas, Nahusha, Sudas, Sumukh and Nimi were some of the Kshatriya kings who came into the conflict with the Brahmins. The issues in these conflicts were different.

The issue between Vena and the Brahmins was whether a King could command and require the Brahmins to worship him and offer sacrifice to him instead of the Gods. The issue between Pururavas and the Brahmins was whether a Kshatriya King could confiscate the property of the Brahmin. The issue between Nahusha and the Brahmins was whether a Kshatriya king could order a Brahmin to do a servile job. The issue between Nimi and the Brahmins was whether the king was bound to employ only his family priest at the sacrificial ceremony. The issue between Sudas and the Brahmins was whether the king was bound to employ only a Brahmin as a priest.

This shows how big were the issues between the two classes. No wonder that the struggle between them was also the bitterest. The wars between them were not merely occasional riots. They were wars of extermination. It is stated that Parashuram a Brahmin fought against the Kshatriyas twenty-one times and killed every Kshatriya.

While the two classes were fighting among themselves for supremacy, they both combined to keep down the Vaishyas and the Shudras. The Vaishya was a milch cow. He lived only to pay taxes. The Shudra was a general beast of burden. These two classes existed for the sole purpose of making the life of the Brahmins and Kshatriyas glorious and happy. They had no right to live for themselves. They lived to make the life of their betters possible.

Below these two classes there were others. They were the Chandalas and Shwappakas. They were not untouchables but they were degraded. They were outside the pale of society and outside the pale of law. They had no rights and no opportunities. They were the rejects of the Aryan Society.

The sexual immorality of the Aryan Society must shock their present day descendants. The Aryans of pre-Buddhist days had no such rule of prohibited degrees, as we have today to govern their sexual or matrimonial relationship.

According to the Aryan Mythology, Brahma is the creator. Brahma had three sons and a daughter. His one son Daksha married his sister. The daughters born of this marriage between brother and sister were married some to Kashyapa the son of Marichi the son of Brahma and some to Dharma the third son of Brahma. [f21] 

In the Rig-Veda there is an episode related of Yama and Yami brother and sister. According to this episode Yami the sister invites her brother Yama to cohabit with her and becomes angry when he refuses to do so[f22] .

A father could marry his daughter. Vashishta married his own daughter Shatrupa when she came of age[f23] .  Manu married his daughter Ila. [f24]  Janhu married his daughter Janhavi[f25] .  Surya married his daughter Usha[f26] . There was polyandri not of the ordinary type. The polyandri prevalent among the Aryans was a polyandri when Kinsmen cohabited with one woman. Dhahaprachetani and his son Soma cohabited with Marisha the daughter of Soma[f27] .

Instances of grandfather marrying his grand-daughter are not wanting. Daksha gave his daughter in marriage to his father Brahma[f28]  and from that marriage was born the famous Narada. Dauhitra. gave his 27 daughters to his father Soma for cohabitation and procreation[f29] .

The Aryans did not mind cohabiting with women in the open and within sight of people. The Rishis used to perform certain religious rites which were called Vamdevya vrata. These rites used to be performed on the Yadnya Bhumi. If any woman came there and expressed a desire for sexual intercourse and asked the sage to satisfy her, the sage used to cohabit with her then and there in the open on the Yadnya Bhumi. Instances of this may be mentioned; the case of the sage Parashara who had sexual intercourse with Satyavati and also of Dirghatapa. That such a custom was common is shown by the existence of the word Ayoni. The word Ayoni is understood to mean of immaculate conception. That is not however the original meaning of the word. The original meaning of the word Yoni is house. Ayoni means conceived out of the house i.e. in the open. That there was nothing deemed to be wrong in this is clear from the fact that both Sita and Draupadi were Ayonija. That this was very common is clear from the fact that religious injunctions had to be issued against such a practice. [f30] 

There was prevalent among the Aryans the practice of renting out their women to others for a time. As an illustration may be mentioned the story of Madhavi[f31]  The king Yayati gave his daughter Madhavi as an offering to his guru Galav. Galav rented out the girl Madhavi to three kings each a period. Thereafter he gave her in marriage to Vishwamitra. She remained with him until a son was born to her. Thereafter Galav took away the girl and gave her back to her father Yayati.

Besides the practice of letting out women to others temporarily at a rent, there was prevalent among the Aryans another practice namely, allowing procreation by the best amongst them. Raising a family was treated by them as though it was a breeding or stock raising. Among the Aryas there was a class of persons called Devas who were Aryans but of a superior status and prowess. The Aryans allowed their women to have sexual intercourse with any one of the class of Devas in the inerest of good breeding. This practice prevailed so extensively that the Devas came to regard prelibation in respect of the Aryan women as their prescriptive right. No Aryan woman could be married unless this right of prelibation had been redeemed and the woman released from the control of the Devas by offering what was technically called Avadan. The Laja Hoame which is performed in every Hindu marriage and the details of which are given in the Ashwalayan Grahya Sutra is a relic of this act of the redemption of the Aryan woman from the right of prelibation of the Devas. The Avadan in the Laja Hoame is nothing but the price for the extinguishment of the right of the Devas over the bride. The Saptapadi performed in all Hindu marriages and which is regarded as the most essential ceremony without which there is no lawful marriage has an integral connection with this right of prelibation of the Devas. Saptapadi means walking by the bridegroom seven steps with the bride. Why is this essential? The answer is that the Devas if they were dissatisfied with the compensation could claim the woman before the seventh step was taken. After the seventh step was taken, the right of the Devas was extinguished and the bridegroom could take away the bride and live as husband and wife without being obstructed or molested by the Devas.

There was no rule of chastity for maidens. A girl could have sexual intercourse with and also progeny from anybody without contracting marriage. This is evident from the root meaning of the word Kanya which means a girl. Kanya comes from the root Kam which means a girl free to offer herself to any man. That they did offer themselves to any man and had children without contracting regular marriage is illustrated by the case of Kunti and Matsyagandha. Kunti had children from different men before she was married to Pandu and Matsyagandha had sexual intercourse with the sage Parashara before she was married to Shantanu the father of Bhishma.

Bestiality was also prevalent among the Aryans. The story of the sage Dam having sexual intercourse with a female deer[f32]  is well known. Another instance is that of Surya cohabiting with a mare[f33] .. But the most hideous instance is that of the woman having sexual intercourse with the horse in the Ashvamedha Yadna.

The religion of the Aryan consisted of the Yadna or sacrifice. The sacrifice was a means to enter into the godhead of the gods, and even to control the gods. The traditional sacrifices were twenty-one in number divided into three classes of seven each. The first were sacrifices of butter, milk, corn, etc. The second class covered Soma sacrifices and third animal sacrifices. The sacrifice may be of short duration or long duration lasting for a year or more. The latter was called a Sattra. The argument in favour of the sacrifice is that eternal holiness is won by him that offers the sacrifice. Not only a man’s self but also his Manes stood to benefit by means of sacrifice. He gives the Manes pleasure with his offering, but he also raises their estate, and sends them up to live in a higher world[f34] .

The sacrifice was by no means meant as an aid to the acquirement of heavenly bliss alone. Many of the great sacrifices were for the gaining of good things on earth. That one should sacrifice without the ulterior motive of gain is unknown. Brahmanic India knew no thank offering. Ordinarily the gain is represented as a compensating gift from the divinity, whom they sacrifice. The sacrifice began with the recitation : “ He offers the sacrifice to the god with this text : Do thou give to me (and) I (will) give to thee ; do thou bestow on me (and) I (will) bestow on thee‘.

The ceremony of the sacrifice was awe-inspiring. Every word was pregnant with consequences and even the pronunciation of the word or accent was fateful. There are indications, however, that the priest themselves understood that, much in the ceremonial was pure hocus-pocus, and not of much importance as it was made out to be.

Every sacrifice meant fee to the priest. As to fee, the rules were precise and their propounds were unblushing. The priest performed the sacrifice for the fee alone, and it must consist of valuable garments, kine, horses or gold—when each was to be given was carefully stated. The priests had built up a great complex of forms, where at every turn fees were demanded. The whole expense, falling on one individual for whose benefit the sacrifice was performed, must have been enormous. How costly the whole thing became can be seen from the fact that in one place the fee for the sacrifice is mentioned as one thousand cows. For this greed, which went so far that he proclaimed that he who gives a thousand cows obtains all things of heaven. The priest had a good precedent to cite, for, the gods of heaven, in all tales told of them, ever demand a reward from each other when they help their neighbour gods. If the Gods seek rewards, the priest has a right to do the same.

The principal sacrifice was the animal sacrifice. It was both costly and barbaric. In the Aryan religion there are five sacrificial animals mentioned. In this list of sacrificial animals man came first. The sacrifice of a man was the costliest. The rules of sacrifice required that the individual to be slaughtered must be neither a. priest nor a slave. He must be a Kshatriya or Vaishya. According to the ordinary valuation of those times the cost of buying a man to be sacrificed was one thousand cows. Besides being costly and barbaric, it must have been revolting because the sacrificers had not only to kill the man but to eat him. Next to man came the horse. That also was a costly sacrifice because the horse was a rare and a necessary animal for the Aryans in their conquest of India. The Aryans could hardly afford such a potent instrument of military domination to be offered as sacrifice. The sacrifice must have been revolting in as much as one of the rituals in the horse-sacrifice was the copulation of the horse before it was slaughtered with the wife of the sacrificer.

The animals most commonly offered for sacrifice were of course the cattle which were used by the people for their agricultural purposes. They were mostly cows and bullocks.

The Yadnas were costly and they would have died out of sheer considerations of expense involved. But they did not. The reason is that the stoppage of Yadna involved the question of the loss of the Brahmin’s fees. There could be no fees if the Yadna ceased to be performed and the Brahmin would starve. The Brahmin therefore found a substitute for the costly sacrificial animals. For a human sacrifice the Brahmin allowed as a substitute for a live man, a man of straw or metal or earth. But they did not altogether give up human sacrifice for fear that this Yadna might be stopped and they should lose their fees. When human sacrifice became rare, animal sacrifice came in as a substitute. Animal sacrifice was also a question of expense to the laity. Here again rather than allow the sacrifice to go out of vogue, the Brahmins came forward with smaller animals for cattle just as cattle had been allowed to take the place of the man and the horse. All this was for the purpose of maintaining the Yadna so that the Brahmin did not lose his fees which was his maintenance. So set were the Brahmins on the continuance of the Yadna that they were satisfied with merely rice as an offering.

It must not however be supposed that the institution of substitutes of the Yadnas of the Aryans had become less horrid. The introduction of substitutes did not work as a complete replacement of the more expensive and more ghastly sacrifice by the less expensive and the more innocent. All that it meant was that the offering may be according to the capacity of the sacrificer. If he was poor his offering may be rice. If he was well to do it might be a goat. If he was rich it might be a man, horse, cow or a bull. The effect of the subsitutes was that the Yadna was brought within the capacity of all so that the Brahmin reaped a larger harvest of feast on the total. It did not have the effect of stopping animal sacrifice. Indeed animals continued to be sacrificed by the thousands.

The Yadna often became a regular carnage of cattle at which the Brahmins did the work of butchers. One gets some idea of the extent of this carnage of innocent animals from references to the Yadnas which one comes across in Buddhist literature. In the Suttanipat a description is given of the Yadna that was arranged to be performed by Pasenadi, king of Kosala. It is stated that there were tied to the poles for slaughter at the Yadna five hundred oxen, five hundred bulls, five hundred cows, five hundred goats and five hundred lambs and that the servents of the king who were detailed to do the jobs according to the orders given to them by the officiating Brahmin priests were doing their duties with tears in their eyes.

The Yadna besides involving a terrible carnage was really a kind of carnival. Besides roast meet there was drink. The Brahmins had Soma as well as Sura. The others had Sura in abundance. Almost every Yadna was followed by gambling and what is most extraordinary is that, side by side there went on also sexual intercourse in the open. Yadna had become debauchery and there was no religion left in it. The Aryan religion was just a series of observances. Behind these observances there was no yearning for a good and a virtuous life. There was no hunger or thirst for rightousness. Their religion was without any spiritual content. The hymns of the Rig Veda furnish very good evidence of the absence of any spiritual basis for the Aryan religion. The hymns are prayers addressed by the Aryans to their gods. What do they ask for in these prayers? Do they ask to be kept away from temptation? Do they ask for deliverance from evil? Do they ask for forgiveness of sins? Most of the hymns are in praise of Indra.

They praise him for having brought destruction to the enemies of the Aryans. They praise him because he killed all the pregnant wives of Krishna, an Asura. They praise him because he destroyed hundreds of villages of the Asuras. They praise him because he killed lakhs of Dasyus. The Aryans pray to Indra to carry on greater destruction among the Anaryas in the hope that they may secure to themselves the food supplies of the Anaryas and the wealth of the Anaryas. Far from being spiritual and elevating, the hymns of the Rig-Veda are saturated with wicked thoughts and wicked purposes. The Aryan religion never concerned itself with what is called a righteous life.

II

Such was the state of the Aryan Society when Buddha was born. There are two pertinent questions regarding Buddha as a reformer who laboured to reform the Aryan Society. What were the chief planks in his reform? To what extent did he succeed in his reform movement? To take up the first question.

Buddha felt that for the inculcation of a good and a pure life, example was better than precept. The most important thing he did was to lead a good and a pure life so that it might serve as a model to all. How unblemished a life he led can be gathered from the Brahma-Jala Sutta. It is reproduced below because it not only gives an idea of the pure life that Buddha led but it also gives an idea of how impure a life the Brahmins, the best among the Aryans led.

Brahma Jala Sutta

1. Thus have I heard. The Blessed One was once going along the high road between Rajagaha and Nalanda with a great company of the brethren with about five hundred brethren. And Suppiya the mendicant too was going along the high road between Rajagaha and Nalanda with his disciple the young Brahmadatta. Now just then Suppiya the mendicant was speaking in many ways in dispraise of the Buddha, in dispraise of the Doctrine, in dispraise of the Order. But young Brahmadatta, his pupil, gave utterance, in many ways, to praise of the Buddha, to praise of the Doctrine, to praise of the Order. Thus they two, teacher and pupil, holding opinions in direct contradiction of one to the other, were following, step by step, after the Blessed one and the company of the brethren.

2. Now the Blessed one put up at the royal rest house in the Ambalatthika pleasance to pass the night, and with him the company of the brethren. And so also did Suppiya the mendicant, and with him his young disciple Brahmadatta. And there, at the rest houses, these two carried on the same discussion as belore.

3. And in the early dawn a number of the brethren assembled as they rose up. in the pavilion ; and this was the trend of the talk that sprang up among them as they were seated there. How wonderful a thing is it, brethren, and how strange that the Blessed One, he who knows and sees, the Arahat the Buddha Supreme, should so clearly have perceived how various are the inclination of men! For see how while Suppiya the mendicant speaks in many ways in dispraise of the Buddha, the Doctrine, and the Order, his own disciple, young Brahmadatta, speaks, in as many ways, in praise of them. So do these two, teacher and pupil, follow step by step after the Blessed One and the company of the brethren, giving utterance to views in direct contradiction of one to the other.

4. Now the Blessed One. on realising what was the drift of their talk, went to the pavilion, and took his seat on the mat spread out for him. And when he had sat down he said : “What is the talk on which you are engaged sitting here and what is the subject of the conversation between you?” And they told him all. And he said:

5. Brethren, if outsiders should speak against me, or against the Doctrine, or against the Order, you should not on that account either bear malice, or suffer heart burning, or feel ill-will. If you, on that account, should be angry and hurt, that would stand in the way of your own self-conquest. If, when others speak against us, you feel angry at that, and displeased, would you then be able to judge how far that speech of theirs is well said or ill? `That would not he so, Sir.’

`But when outsiders speak in dispraise of me, or of the Doctrine, or of the Order, you should unravel what is false and point it out as wrong, saying, For this or that reason this is not the fact, that is not so, such a thing is not found among us, is not in us.

6. But also, brethren, if outsiders should speak in praise of me, in praise of the Doctrine, in praise of the Order, you should not, on that account, be filled with pleasure or gladness, or be lifted up in heart. Were you to be so that also would stand in the way of your self-conquest. When outsiders speak in praise of me, or of the Doctrine, or of the Order, you should acknowledge what is right to be the fact saying: For this or that reason this is the fact, that is so, such a thing is found among us, is in us.

7. lt is in respect only of trifling things, of matters of little value, of mere morality, that an unconverted man, when praising the Tathagata, would speak. And what are such trifling, minor details of mere morality that he would praise?

(4) (The Moralities. Part 1).

8. Putting away the killings of living things, Gotama the recluse holds aloof from the destruction of life. He has laid the cudgel and the sword aside, and ashamed of roughness, and full of mercy, he dwells compassionate and kind to all creatures that have life. It is thus that the unconverted man, when speaking in praise of the Tathagata, might speak.

Or he might say: Putting, away the taking of what has not been given, Gotama the recluse lived aloof from grasping what is not his own. He takes only what is given, and expecting that gifts will come, he passes his life in honesty and purity of heart.

Or he might say: Putting away in-chastity, Gotama the recluse is chaste. He holds himself aloof, far off, from the vulgar practice, from the sexual act.

9. Or he might say: Putting away lying words, Gotama the recluse holds himself aloof from falsehood. He speaks truth from the truth he never swerves ; faithful and trustworthy, he breaks not his word to the world“.

Or he might say: Putting away slander. Gotama the recluse holds himself aloof from calumny. What he hears here he repeats not elsewhere to raise a quarrel against the people here; what he hears elsewhere he repeats not here to raise a quarrel against the people there. Thus does he live as a binder together of those who are divided, an encourage of those who are friends, a peacemaker, a lover of peace, impassioned for peace, a speaker of words that make for peace.”

Or he might say: “Putting away rudeness of speech, Gotama the recluse holds himself aloof from harsh language. Whatsoever word is blameless, pleasant to the ear, lovely, reaching to the heart, urbane, pleasing to the people, beloved of the people such are words he speaks.

Or he might say : Putting away frivolous talk, Gotama the recluse holds himself aloof from vain conversation. In season he speaks, in accordance with the facts, words full of meaning, on religion, on the discipline of the Order. He speaks, and at the right time, words worthy to be laid up in one’s heart, fitly illustrated, clearly divided, to the point.

10. Or he might say: “Gotama the recluse holds himself aloof from causing injury to seeds or plants.

He takes but one meal a day, not eating at night, refraining from food after hours (after midday).

He refrains from being a spectator at shows at fairs with nautch dances, singing, and music.

He abstains from wearing, adorning, or ornamenting himself with garlands, scents, and unguents.

He abstains from the use of the large and lofty beds.

He abstains from accepting silver or gold.

He abstains from accepting uncooked grain.

He abstains from accepting raw meat.

He abstains from accepting women or girls.

He abstains from accepting bondmen or bond-women.

He abstains from accepting sheep or goats.

He abstains from accepting fowls or swine.

He abstains from accepting elephants, cattle, horses and mare.

He abstains from accepting cultivated fields or waste.

He abstains from the acting as a go-between or messenger.

He abstains from buying and selling.

He abstains from cheating with scales or bronzes or measures.

He abstains from the crooked ways of bribery, cheating, and fraud.

He abstains from maiming, murder, putting in bonds, highway robbery, dacoity, and violence.

Such are the things, brethren, which an unconverted man, when speaking in praise of the Tathagata might say. ‘

Here ends the Kula Sila (the Short Paragraphs on Conduct).

II. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to the injury of seedlings and growing plants whether propagated from roots or cuttings or joints or buddings or seeds—Gotarna the recluse holds aloof from such injury to seedlings and growing plants. “

12. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to the use of the things stored up; stores, to wit, of foods, drinks, clothing, equipages, bedding, perfumes, and curry-stuffs—Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such use of things stored up.

13. Or he might say: “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to visiting shows ; that is to say,

 (1) Nautch dances (nakkarn),

(2) Singings of songs (gitam)

(3) Instrumental music (vaditam)

(4) Shows at fairs (pekham)

(5) Ballads recitations (akkhanam)

(6) Hand music (paniseram)

(7) The chanting of bards (vetala)

(8) Tam-tam playing (kumbhathunam) (9) Fair scences (sobhanagarkarn)

(10) Acrobatic feats by Kandalas (Kandala-vamsa-dhopanam)

(11) Combats of elephants, horses, buffaloes, bulls, goats, rams.

Cocks and quails.

(12) Bouts at quarterstaff, boxing, wrestling.

(13)-(16) Sham-fights, roll-calls, manoeuvres, reviews. Gotama the recluse holds aloof from visiting such shows.14. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to games and recreations, that is to say.

(1) Games on hoards with eight, or with ten rows of squares.

(2) The same games played by imagining such boards in the air.

(3) Keeping going over diagrams drawn on the ground so that one-steps only where one ought to go.

(4) Either removing the pieces or men from a heap with one’s nail or putting them into a heap in each case without shaking it. He, who shakes the heap, loses.

(5) Throwing dice.

(6) Hitting a short stick with a long one.

(7) Dipping the hand with the fingers stretched out in lac or red dye, or flour water, and striking the wet hand on the ground or on a wall calling out What shall it be?’ and showing the form requireselephants, horses etc.,

(8) Games with balls.

(9) Blowing through toy pipes made of leaves.

(10) Ploughing with toy ploughs.

(11) Turning summersaults.

(12) Playing with toy windmills made of palm leaves.

(13) Playing with toy measures made of palm leaves.

(14, 15) Playing with toy carts or toy bows.

(16) Guessing at letters traced in the air, or on a playfellow’s back.

(17) Guessing the playfellow’s thoughts.

(I8) Mimicry of deformities. Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such games and recreations.

15. Or he might say:  “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to the use of high and large couches: that is to say,

(1) Moveable settees, high, and six feet long (Asandi).

(2) Divans with animal figures carved on the supports (Pallanko).

(3) Goats’ hair coverings with very long fleece (Ganako).

(4) Patchwork counterpanes of many colour (Kittaka).

(5) White blankets (Patika).

(6) Woollen coverlets embroidered with flowers (Patalika).

(7) Quilts stuffed with cottonwood (Tulika).

(8) Coverlets embroidered with figures of lions, tigers, &c., (Vikatika).

(9) Rugs with fur on both sides (Uddalomi).

(10) Rugs with fur on one side (Ekantalomi).

(11) Coverlets embroidered with gems (Katthissam).

(12) Silk coverlets (Koseyyam).

(13) Carpets large enough for sixteen dancers (Kuttakam).

(14-16) Elephant, horse, and chariot rugs.

(17) Rugs of antelope skins sewn together (Aginapaveni).

(18) Rugs of skins of the plantain antelope.

(19) Carpets with awnings above them (Sauttarakkhadam).

(20) Sofas with red pillows for the head and feet.

16. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to the use of means for adorning and beautifying themselves: that is to say:

Rubbing in scented powders on one’s body, shampooing it, and bathing it patting the limbs with clubs after the manner of wrestlers. The use of mirrors, eye-ointments, garlands, rouge, cosmetics, bracelets, necklaces, walking sticks, reed cases for drugs, rapiers, sunshades, embroidered slippers, turbans, diadems, whisks of the yak’s tail, and long-fringed white robes. Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such means of adorning and beautifying the person.

17. Or he might say:  “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to such low conversation as these:

Tales of kings, of robbers, of ministers of state, tales of war, of terrors, of battles; talk about foods and drinks, clothes, beds, garlands, perfumes, talks about relationships, equipages, villages, towns, cities, and countries. Tales about women, and about heroes; gossip at street corners, or places whence water is fetched: ghost stories; desultory talk; speculations about the creation of the land or sea, or about existence and non-existence.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low conversation.”

18. Or he might say: “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to the use of wrangling phrases: such as:

You don’t understand this doctrine and discipline, I do.

 “How should you know about this doctrine and discipline?”

You have fallen into wrong views. It is I who am in the right.”

 I am speaking to the point, you are not.

 You are putting last what ought to come first, and first what ought to come last.”

What you’ve excoriated so long, that’s all quite upset.”

“Your challenge has been taken up.”

You are proved to be wrong.” Set to work to clear your views.”

Disentangle yourself if you can.”

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such wrangling phrases.”

19. Or he might say, “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, continue addicted to taking messages, going on errands, and acting as go-betweens; to wit, on kings, ministers of state, Kshatriyas, Brahmans, or young men, saying. Go there, come-hither, take this with you, bring that from thence.’

Gotama the recluse abstains from such servile duties.” 20. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, are tricksters, droners out (of holy words for pay), diviners, and exorcists, ever hungering to add gain to gain.

Gotam the recluse holds aloof from such deception and patter.” Here ends the Majjhima Sila (the Longer Paragraphs on Conduct).

21. Or he might say: “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

(1) Palmistry—prophesying long life, prosperity, &c., (or the reverse), from marks on a child’s hands, feet, &c.

(2) Divining by means of omens and signs.

(3) Auguries had drawn from thunderbolts and other celestial portents.

(4) Prognostication by interpreting dreams.

(5) Fortune telling from marks on the body.

  (6) Auguries from the marks on cloth gnawed by mice.

(7) Sacrificing to Agni.

(8) Offering oblations from a spoon. (9-13) Making offerings to gods of husks, of the red powder between the grain and the husk, of husked grain ready for boiling, of ghee and of oil.

(14) Sacrificing by spewing mustard seeds, &c., into the fire out of one’s mouth.

(15) Drawing blood from one’s right knee as a sacrifice to the gods.

(16) Looking at the knuckles, &c., and, after muttering a charm, divining whether a man is well born of luck or not.

(17) Determining whether the site, for a proposed house or pleasance, is lucky or not.

(18) Advising on customary law.

(19) Laying demons in a cemetery.

(20) Laying ghosts.

(21) Knowledge of the charms to be used when lodging in an earth house.

(22) Snake charming.

(23) The poison craft.

(24) The scorpion craft.

(25) The mouse craft.

(26) The bird craft.

(27) The crow craft.

(28) Foretelling the number of years that a man has yet to live.

(29) Giving charms to ward off arrows.

(30) The animal wheel.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.”

22. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

Knowledge of the signs of good and bad qualities in the following things, and of the marks in them denoting the health or luck of their owners to wit, gems, staves, garments, swords, arrows, bows, other weapons, women, men, boys, girls, slaves, slave-girls, elephants, horses, buffaloes, bulls, oxen, goats, sheep, fowls, quails, iguanas, herrings, tortoises, and other animals.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.”

23. Or he might say: “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood by low arts, such as sooth saying to the effect that:

The chiefs will march out.

The home chiefs will attack, and the enemies retreat.

The enemies’ chiefs will attack, and ours will retreat.

The home chiefs will gain the victory, and ours will suffer defeat.

The foreign chiefs will gain the victory on this side, and ours will suffer defeat.

Thus will there be victory on this side, defeat on that.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.”

24. Or he might say: “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood, by such low arts as foretelling:

(1) There will be an eclipse of the Moon.

(2) There will be an eclipse of the Sun.

(3) There will be an eclipse of a Star (Nakshatra).

(4) There will be aberration or the Sun or the Moon.

(5) The Sun or the Moon will return to its usual path.

(6) There will be aberrations of the Stars.

(7) The Stars will return to their usual course.

(8) There will be a fall of meteors.

(9) There will be a jungle fire.

(10) There will be an earthquake.

(11) The God will thunder.

(12-15) There will be rising and setting, clearness and dimness of the Sun or the Moon or the stars, or foretelling of each of these fifteen phenomena that they will betoken such and such a result.”

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.

25. Or he might say: “Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of the livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

Foretelling an abundant rainfall.

Foretelling a deficient rainfall.

Foretelling agood harvest.

Foretelling scarcity of food.

Foretelling tranquility.

Foretelling disturbances.

Foretelling a pestilence.

Foretelling a healthy season.

Counting on the fingers.

Counting without using the fingers.

Summing up large totals.

Composing ballads, poetising, Casuistry, sophistry.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.26. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as:

(1) Arranging a lucky day for marriages in which the bride or bridegroom is brought home.

(2) Arranging a lucky day for marriages in which the bride or bridegroom is sent forth.

(3) Fixing a lucky time for the conclusion of treaties of peace (or using charms to procure harmony)

(4) Fixing a lucky time for the outbreak of hostilities (or using charms to make discord).

(5) Fixing a lucky time for the calling in of debts (or charms for success in throwing dice).

(6) Fixing a lucky time for the expenditure of money (or charms to bring ill luck to an opponent throwing dice).

(7) Using charms to make people lucky.

(8) Using charms to make people unlucky.

(9) Using charms to procure abortion.

(10) Incantations to keep a man’s jaws fixed.

(11) Incantations to bring on dumbness.

(12) Incantations to make a man throw up his hands.

(13) Incantations to bring on deafness.

(14) Obtaining oracular answers by means of the magic mirror.

(15) Obtaining oracular answers through a girl possessed.

(16) Obtaining oracular answers from a god.

(17) The worship of the Sun.

(18) The worship of the Great One.

(19) Bringing forth flames from one’s mouth.

(20) Invoking Siri, the goddess of Luck.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.”

27. Or he might say: Whereas some recluses and Brahmans, while living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

(1) Vowing gifts to a god if a certain benefit be granted,

(2) Praying such vows.

(3) Repeating charms while lodging in an earth house.

(4) Causing virility.

(5) Making a man impotent.

(6) Fixing on lucky sites for dwellings.

  (7) Consecrating sites.

(8) Ceremonial rinsing of the mouth.

(9) Ceremonial bathing.

(10) Offering sacrifices.

(11-14) Administering emetics and purgatives.

(15) Purging people to relieve the head (that is by giving drugs to make people sneeze).

(16) Oiling people’s ears (either to make them grow or to heal sores on them).

(17) Satisfying people’s eyes (soothing them by dropping medicinal oils into them).

(I8) Administering drugs through the nose.

(19) Applying collyrium to the eyes.

(20) Giving medical ointment for the eyes.

(21) Practising as an oculist.

(22) Practising as a surgeon.

(23) Practising as a doctor for children.

(24) Administering roots and drugs.

(25) Administering medicines in rotation.

Gotama the recluse holds aloof from such low arts.

“These brethren are the trifling matters, the minor details of morality, of which the unconverted man, when praising the Tathagata, might speak.’

Here end the Long Paragraphs on Conduct.

Ill

This was indeed the highest standard for a moral life for an individual to follow. So high a standard of moral life was quite unknown to the Aryan Society of his day.

He did not stop merely with setting an example by leading a life of purity. He also wanted to mould the character of the ordinary men and women in society. For their guidance he devised a form of baptism which was quite unknown to the Aryan Society. The baptism consisted in the convert to Buddhism undertaking to observe certain moral precepts laid down by Buddha. These precepts are known as Panch Sila or the five precepts. They are;

(1)  Not to kill, (2) Not to steal, (3) Not to lie, (4) Not to be unchaste and (5) Not to drink intoxicants.

These five precepts were of the laity.

For the Monks there were five additional precepts:

(6) Not to eat at forbidden times,

(7) Not to dance, sing, or attend theatrical or other spectacles,

(8) To abstain from the use of garlands, scents, and ornaments,

(9) To abstain from the use of high or broad beds, and

(10) Never to receive money.

These Silas or precepts formed the moral code which it was intended should regulate the thoughts and actions of men and women.

Of these the most important one was the precept not to kill. Buddha took care to make it clear that the precept did not merely mean abstention from taking life. He insisted that the precept must be understood to mean positive sympathy, good will, and love for every thing that breathes.

He gave the same positives and extended content to other precepts. One of the Buddha’s lay followers once reported to him the teaching of a non-Buddhist ascetic, to the effect that the highest ideal consisted in the absence of evil deeds, evil words, evil thoughts, and evil life. The Buddha’s comment upon this is significant. If, said he, this were true, then every suckling child would have attained the ideal of life. Life is knowledge of good and evil; and after that the exchange of evil deeds, words, thoughts, and life, for good ones. This is to be brought about only by a long and determined effort of the will”.

Buddha’s teachings were not merely negative. They are positive and constructive. Buddha was not satisfied with a man following his precepts. He insisted upon encouraging others to follow them. For example in the Auguttara Nikaya the Buddha is quoted as distinguishing between a good man and a very good man by saying that one who abstains from killing, stealing, in-chastity, lying and drunkenness may be called good ; but only he deserves to be called very good who abstains from these evil things himself and also instigates others to do the like……….

As has been well said the two cardinal virtues of Buddhism are love and wisdom.

How deeply he inculcated the practice of love as a virtue is clear from his own words. As a mother at the risk of her life watches over her own child, her only child, so also let every one cultivate: a boundless loving mind towards all beings. And let him cultivate good will towards, the entire world, a boundless (loving) mind above and below and across, unobstructed, without hatred, without enmity. This way of living is the best in the world.” So taught Buddha[f35] .

Universal pity, sympathy for all suffering beings, good will to every form of sentient life, these things characterised the Tathagath (Buddha) as they have few others of the sons of men ; and he succeeded in a most surprising degree in handing on his point of view to his followers. [f36] 

Buddha held to the doctrine of wisdom as firmly as he did to the doctrine of love. He held that moral life began with knowledge and ended with wisdom. he came to save the world, and his method for the accomplishment of this end was the destruction of ignorance and the dissemination of knowledge as to the true values of life and the wise way to live. Buddha did not arrogate to himself the power to save people. People had to do that for themselves. And the way to save lay through knowledge. So much insistence did he place upon knowledge that he did not think that morality without knowledge was virtue.

There are three things against which Buddha carried on a great campaign.

He repudiated the authority of the Vedas………. Secondly he denounced the Yudna as a form of religion. The attitude of Buddha towards Yadna is well stated in the Jatakamala in the form of a story. The story runs thus :

THE STORY OF THE SACRIFICE

Those hearts are pure do not act up to the enticement of the wicked. Knowing this, pure-heartiness is to be striven after. This will be taught by the following:

Long ago the Bodhisattva. it is said, was a king who had obtained his kingdom in the order of hereditary succession. He had reached this state as the effect of his merit, and ruled his realm in peace, not disturbed by any rival, his sovereignty being universally acknowledged. His country was free from any kind of annoyance, vexation or disaster, both his home relations and those with foreign countries being quite in every respect; and all his vessels obeyed his commands.

1. This monarch having subdued the passions, his enemies, felt no inclination for such profits as are to be blamed when enjoyed, but was with his whole heart intent on promoting the happiness of his subjects. Holding virtuous practice (dharma) the only purpose of his actions, he behaved like a Muni.

2. For he knew the nature of mankind, that people set a high value on imitating the behaviour of the highest. For this reason, being desirous of bringing about salvation for his subjects, he was particularly attached to the due performance of his religious duties. 3. He practised almsgiving kept strictly the precepts of moral conduct (sila), cultivated forbearance, strove for the benefit of the creatures. His mild countenance being in accordance with his thoughts devoted to the happiness of his subjects, he appeared like the embodied Dharma.

Now it once happened that though protected by his arm, his realm, both in consequence of the faulty actions of its inhabitants and inadvertence on the part of the angels charged with the care of rain, was afflicted in several districts by drought and the troublesome effects of such a disaster. Upon this the king, fully convinced that his plague had been brought about by the violation of righteousness by himself or his subjects, and taking much to heart the distress of his people, whose welfare was the constant object of his thoughts and cares, took the advice of men of acknowledged competence, who were reputed for their knowledge in matters of religion. So keeping counsel with the elders among the Brahmans, headed by his family priest (purohita) and his ministers, he asked them for some means of putting an end to that calamity. Now they believing a solemn sacrifice as is enjoined by the Veda to be a cause of abundant rain, explained to him that he must perform such a sacrifice of a frightful character, inasmuch as it requires the massacre of many hundreds of living beings. But after being informed of everything concerning such a slaughter as is prescribed for the sacrifice, his innate compassion forbade him to approve of their advice in his heart; yet out of civility, unwilling to offend them by harsh words of refusal, he slipped over this point, turning the conversation upon other topics. They, on the other hand, no sooner caught the opportunity of conversing with the king on matters of religion, than they once more admonished him to accomplish the sacrifice, for they did not understand his deeply hidden mind.

4. You constantly take care not to neglect the proper time of performing your different royal duties, established for the sake of obtaining the possession of land and ruling it. The due order of these actions of yours is in agreement with the precepts of Righteousness (dharma).

5. How then is this that you who (in all other respects) are so clever in the observance of the triad (of dharma, artha, and kama), bearing your bow to defend the good of your people, are so careless and almost sluggish as to that bridge to the world of the Devas, the name of which is sacrifice’?

6. Like servants, the kings (your vassel) revere your commands, thinking them to be the surest gage of success. Now the time is come, 0 destroyer of your foes, to gather by means of sacrifice superior blessings, which are to procure for you a shining glory.

7. `Certainly, that holiness which is the requisite for a dikshita is already yours, by reason of your habitual practice of charity and your strictness in observing the restraint (of good conduct). Nevertheless, it would be fit for you to discharge your debt to the Devas by such sacrifices as are the subject matter of the Veda. The deities being satisfied by duly and faultlessly performed sacrifice, honour the creatures in return by (sending) rain. Thus considering, take to mind the welfare of your subjects and your own, and consent to the performance of a regular sacrifice which will enhance your glory.

8. Thereupon he entered upon this thought: ‘ Very badly guarded is my poor person indeed, being given in trust to such leaders. While faithfully believing and loving the law, I should uproot my virtue of tender heartiness by reliance upon the words of others. For, truly.’

9. Those who are reputed among men to be the best refuge are the very persons who intend to do harm, borrowing their arguments from the Law. Alas! Such a man, who follows the wrong path shown by them, will soon find himself driven to straits, for he will be surrounded by evils.

10. What connections may there be, forsooth, between righteousness and injuring animals? How my residence in the world of the Devas or propitiation of the deities have anything to do with the murder of victims?

II. The animal slaughtered according to the rites with the prescribed prayers, as if those sacred formulas were so many darts to wound it, goes to heaven, they say, and with this object it is killed. In this way that action is interpreted to be done according to the Law. Yet it is a lie.

12.For how is it possible that in the next world one should reap the fruits of what has been done by others? And by what reason will the sacrificial animal mount to heaven, though he has not abstained from wicked actions, though he has not devoted himself to the practice of good ones, simply because he has been killed in sacrifice, and not on the ground of his own actions?

13. And should the victim killed in sacrifice really go to heaven, should we not expect the Brahmans to offer themselves to be immolated in sacrifice? A similar practice, however, is nowhere seen among them. Who, then, may take to heart the advice proffered by these counsellors?

14. As to the Celestials, should we believe that they who are wont to enjoy the fair ambrosia of incomparable scent, flavour, magnificence, and effective power, served to them by the beautiful Apsaras, would abandon it to delight in the slaughter of a pitiable victim, that they might feast on the omentum and such other parts of his body as are offered to them in sacrifice?

Therefore, it is the proper time to act so and so.’ Having thus made up his mind, the king feigned to be eager to undertake the sacrifice; and in approval of their words he spoke to them in this manner; Verily, well protected am I, well gratified, having such counsellors as Your Lordships are, thus bent on securing my happiness! Therefore I will have a human sacrifice (purushamedha) of a thousand victims performed. Let my officials, each in his sphere of business, be ordered to bring together the requisites necessary for that purpose. Let also an inquiry be made of the most fitting ground whereon to raise the tents and other buildings for the sattra. Further, the proper time for the sacrifice must be fixed (by the astrologers) examining the auspicious lunar days, karanas, muhurtas, and constellations.’ The purohita answered; `In order to succeed in your enterprise, Your Majesty ought to take the Avabhritha (final bath) at the end of one sacrifice; after which you may successively undertake the others. For if the thousand human victims were to be seized at once, your subjects, to be sure, would blame you and be stirred up to great agitation on their account.’ These words of the purohita having been approved by the (other) Brahmans, the king replied: ‘ Do not apprehend the wrath of the people, Reverands. I shall take such measures as to prevent any agitation among my subjects.’

15. After this the king convoked an assembly of the townsmen and the lands men, and said: ‘I intend to perform a human sacrifice of a thousand victims. But nobody behaving honestly is fit to be designated for immolation on my part. With this in mind, I give you this advice. Whomsoever of you I shall henceforward perceive transgressing the boundaries of moral conduct, despising my royal will him I order to be caught to be a victim at my sacrifice, thinking such a one the stain of his family and a danger to my country. With the object of carrying this resolution into effect, I shall cause you to be observed by faultless and sharp-sighted emissaries, who have shaken off sleepy carelessness and will report to me concerning your conduct. ‘

16. Then the foremost of the assembly, folding their hands and bringing them to their foreheads, spoke:

Your Majesty, all your actions tend to the happiness of your subjects, what reason can there be to despise you on that account? Even (God) Brahma cannot but sanction your behaviour. Your Majesty, who is the authority of the virtuous, be our highest authority. For this reason anything which pleases Your Majesty must please us too. Indeed, you are pleased with nothing else but our enjoyment and our good.’

After then, notables both of the town and the country had accepted his command in this manner; the king dispersed about his towns and all over his country, officers notified as such by their outward appearance to the people with the charge of laying hold of the evil doers, and everywhere he ordered proclamations to be made by beat of drum day after day, of this kind.

17. The King, a granter of security as he is, warrants safety to every one who constantly cultivates honesty and good conduct, in short, to the virtuous, yet, intending to perform a human sacrifice for the benefit of his subjects, he wants human victims by thousands to be taken out of those who delight in misconduct.

18. Therefore, whosoever henceforward, licentiously indulging in misbehaviour, shall disregard the command of our monarch, which is even observed by the kings, his vassals, shall be brought to the state as a sacrificial victim by the very force of his own actions, and people shall witness his miserable suffering, when he shall pine with pain, his body being fastened to the sacrificial post.’

When the inhabitants of that realms became aware of their king’s careful search after evil-doers with the aim of destining them to be victims at his sacrifice-for they heard the most frightful royal proclamation day after day and saw the king’s servants, who were appointed to look out for wicked people and to seize them. Appearing every now and then everywhere they abandoned their attachment to bad conduct, and grew intend on strictly observing the moral precepts and self-control. They avoided every occasion of hatred and enmity. and settling their quarrels and differences, cherished mutual love and mutual esteem. Obedience to the words of parents and teachers, a general spirit of liberality and sharing with others, hospitality, good manners, modesty, prevailed among them. In short, they lived as it was in the Krita Yuga.

19. The fear of death had awakened in them thoughts of the next world; the risk of tarnishing the honour of their families had stirred their care of guarding their reputation; the great purity of their hearts had strengthened their sense of shame. These factors being at work, people were soon distinguished by their spotless behaviour.

20. Even though every one became more than ever intends on keeping a righteous conduct, still the king’s servants did not diminish their watchfulness in the pursuit of the evildoers. This also contributed to prevent people from falling short of righteousness.

21. The king learning from his emissaries this state of things in his realm, felt extremely rejoiced. He bestowed rich presents on those messengers as a reward for the good news they told him, and enjoined his ministers, speaking something like this :

22. The protection of my subjects is my highest desire, you know. Now they have become worthy to be recipients of sacrificial gifts, and it is for the purpose of my sacrifice that I have provided this wealth. Well, I intend to accomplish my sacrifice in the manner, which I have considered to be the proper once. Let every one who wishes for money, that it may be fuel for his happiness, come and accept it from my hand to his heart’s content. In this way the distress and poverty, which is vexing our country, may be soon driven out. Indeed, whenever I consider my own strong determination to protect my subjects and the great assistance I derive from you, my excellent companions in that task, it often seems to me as though those sufferings of my people, by exciting my anger, were burning in my mind like a blazing fire.’

24. The ministers accepted the royal command and anon went to execute it. They ordered alms-halls to be established in all villages, towns, and markets, likewise at all stations on the roads. This being done, they caused all who begged in order to satisfy their wants, to be provided day after day with a gift of those objects, just as had been ordered by the king.

25. So poverty disappeared, and the people, having received wealth from the part of the king, dressed and adorned with manifold and fine garments and ornaments, exhibited the splendour of festival days.

26. The glory of the king, magnified by the eulogies of the rejoiced recipients of his gifts, spread about in all directions in the same way, as the flower dust of the lotuses carried forth by the small waves of a lake, extends itself over a larger and larger surface.

27. And after the whole people, in consequence of the wise measures taken by their ruler, had become intent on virtuous behaviour, the plagues and calamities, overpowered by the growth of all such qualities as conduce to prosperity, faded away, having lost their hold.

28. The seasons succeeded each other in due course, rejoicing everybody by their regularity, and like kings newly established, complying with the lawful order of things. Consequently the earth produced the various kinds of corn in abundance, and there was fullness of pure and blue water and lotuses in all water basins.

29. No epidemics afflicted mankind; the medicinal herbs possessed their efficacious virtues more than ever; monsoons blew in due time and regularly; the planets moved along in auspicious paths.

30. Nowhere there existed any danger to be feared, either from abroad, or from within, or such as might be caused by dangerous derangement of the elements. Continuing in righteousness and self-control, cultivating good behaviour and modesty, the people of that country enjoyed as it were the prerogatives of the Krita Yuga. By the power, then, of the king performing his sacrifice in this manner in accordance with (the precepts of) the Law, the sufferings of the indigent were put to an end together with the plagues and calamities, and the country abounded in a prosperous and thriving population offering the pleasing aspect of felicity. Accordingly people never wearied of repeating benedictions on their king and extending his renown in all directions.

One day, one of the highest royal officials, whose heart had been inclined to the (True) Belief, spoke thus to the king: “This is a true saying, in truth.

31. “Monarchs, because they always deal with all kinds of business, the highest, the lowest, and the intermediate, by far surpass in their wisdom any wise men.

For, Your Majesty, you have obtained the happiness of your subjects both in this world and in the next, as the effect of your sacrifice being performed in righteousness, free from the blameable sin of animal-slaughter. The hard times are all over and the sufferings of poverty have ceased, since men have been established in the precepts of good conduct. Why use many words? Your subjects are happy.

32. “The black antelope’s skin which covers your limbs has the resemblance of the spot on the bright Moon’s surface, nor can the natural loveliness of your demeanour be hindered by the restraint imposed on you by your being a dikshita. Your head, adorned with such hair-dress as is in compliance with the rites of the diksha, possesses no less lustre than when it was embellished with the splendour of the royal umbrella. And, last not least, by your largesse’s you have surpassed the renown and abated the pride of the famous performer of a hundred sacrifices.

33. “As a rule, Oh, you wise ruler, the sacrifice of those who long for the attainment of some good, is a vile act, accompanied as it is by injury done to living beings. Your sacrifice, on the contrary, this monument of your glory, is in complete accordance with your lovely behaviour and your aversion to vices.

34. Oh! Happy are the subjects who have their protector in you! It is certain that no father could be a better guardian to his children.Another said:

35.”  If the wealthy practise charity, they are commonly impelled to do so by the hopes they put in the cultivation of that virtue; good conduct too, may be accounted for by the wish to obtain high regard among men or the desire of reaching heaven after death. But such a practice of both, as is seen in your skill in securing the benefit of others, cannot be found but in those who are accomplished both in learning and in virtuous exertions. In such a way, then, those whose hearts are pure do not act up to the enticement of the wicked. Knowing this, pure-heartiness is to be striven after.” (In the spiritual lessons for princes, also this is to be said: ‘ Who to his subjects wishing good, himself exerts, Thus brings about salvation, glory, happiness. No other should be of a king the businesses.

And it may be added as follows: ‘(The prince) who strives after material prosperity, ought to act in accordance with the precepts of religion, thinking, a religious conduct of his subjects to be the source of prosperity.’

Further this is here to be said: `Injuring animals never tends to bliss, but charity, self-restraint, continence and the like have this power; for this reason he who longs for bliss must devote himself to these virtues. `And also when discoursing on the Tathagata : `In this manner the Lord showed his inclination to care for the interests of the world, when he was still in his previous existences.)

IV

Another powerful attack against Yadna is contained in his discourses known as Kutadanta Sutta. It is as follows :

THE WRONG SACRIFICE AND THE RIGHT

1. Thus have I heard. The Blessed One once, when going on a tour through Magadha, with a great multitude of the brethren, with about five hundred brethren, came to a Brahman village in Magadha called Khanumata. And there at Khanumata he lodged in the Ambalatthika pleasance.

Now at that time the Brahman Kutadanta was dwelling at Khanumata, a place teeming with life, with much grassland and woodland and water and corn, on a royal domain presented him by Seniya Bimbisara the king of Magadha, as a royal gift, with power over it as if he were the king.

And just then a great sacrifice was being got ready on behalf of Kutadanta the Brahman. And a hundred bulls, and a hundred steers, and a hundred heifers, and a hundred goats, and a hundred rams had been brought to the post for the sacrifice.

2. Now the Brahmans and householders of Khanumata heard the news of the arrival of the Samana Gotama. And they began to leave Khanumata in companies and in bonds to go to the Ambalatthika pleasance.

3. And just then Kutandanta the Brahman had gone apart to the upper terrace of his house for his siesta; and seeing the people thus to go by, he asked his door-keeper the reason. And the doorkeeper told him.

4. Then Kutandanta thought: I have heard that the Samana Gotarna understands about the successful performance of a sacrifice with its threefold method and its sixteen accessory instruments. Now I don’t know all this, and yet I want to carry out a sacrifice. It would be well for me to go to the Samana Gotama, and ask him about it. ‘

So he sent his doorkeeper to the Brahmans and householders of Khanumata, to ask them to wait till he could go with them to call upon the Blessed One.

5. But there were at that time a number of Brahmans staying at Khanumata to take part in the great sacrifice. And when they heard this they went to Kutadanta, and persuaded him on the same grounds as the Brahmans had laid before Sonadanda, not to go. But he answered them in the same terms as Sonadanda had used to those Brahmans. Then they were satisfied, and went with him to call upon the Blessed One.

9. And when he was seated there Kutadanta the Brahman told the Blessed One what he had heard, and requested him to tell him about success in performing a sacrifice in its three modes and with its accessory articles of furniture of sixteen kinds.

Well then, O Brahman, give ear and listen attentively and I will speak.’

Very well, Sir, `said Kutadanta in reply; and the Blessed One spoke as follows:

10. `Long ago, O Brahman, there was a king by name Wide-realm (Maha Vigita), mighty, with great wealth and large property; with stores of silver and gold, of aids to enjoyment, of goods and corn; with his treasure-houses and his garners full. Now when King Wide-realm was once sitting alone in meditation, he became anxious at the thought: I have in abundance all the good things a mortal can enjoy. The whole wide circle of the earth is mine by conquest to possess. `Twere well if I were to offer a great sacrifice that should ensure me weal and welfare for many days.

And he had the Brahman, his chaplain, called; and telling him all that he had thought, he said: Be I would faun, O Brahman, offer a great sacrifice-let the venerable one instruct me how-for my weal and my welfare for many days.”

11. Thereupon the Brahman who was chaplain said to the king: “The king’s country, Sirs, is harassed and harried. There are decoits abroad who pillages the villages and townships, and who makes the roads unsafe. Were the king, so long as that is so, to levy a fresh tax, verily his majesty would be acting wrongly. But perchance his majesty might think. I’ll soon put a stop to these scoundrels’ game by degradation and banishment, and fines and bonds and death! ‘ But their license cannot be satisfactorily put a stop to. The remnant left unpunished would still go on harassing the realm. Now there is one method to adopt to put a thorough end to this disorder. Whosoever there be in the king’s realm who devote themselves to keeping cattle and the farm, to them let his majesty the king give food and seed-corn. Whosoever there be in the king’s realm who devote themselves to trade, to them let his majesty the king give capital. Whosoever there be in the king’s realm who devote themselves to government service, to them let his majesty the king give wages and food. Then those men following each his own business, will no longer harass the realm; the king’s revenue will go up ; the country will be quiet and at peace ; and the populace, pleased one with another and happy; dancing their children in their arms, will dwell with open doors.

Then King Wide-realm, O Brahman, accepted the word of his chaplain, and did as he had said. And those men, following each his business, harassed the realm no more. And the King’s revenue went up. And the country became quiet and at peace. And the populace pleased one with another and happy, dancing their children in their arms, dwelt with open doors.’

12. `So King Wide-realm had his chaplain called, and said: “The disorder is at an end. The country is at peace. I want to offer that great sacrifice—let the venerable one instruct me how—for my weal and my welfare for many days.”

‘ Then let his majesty the king send invitations to whomsoever there may be in his realm who are Kshatriyas, vassals of his, either in the country or the towns ; or who are ministers and officials of his, either in the country or the towns ; or who are Brahmans of position, either in the country or the towns ; or who are householders of substance, either in the country or the towns, saying : I intend to offer a great sacrifice. Let the venerable ones give their sanction to what will be to me for weal and welfare for many days.”

Then King Wide-realm, O Brahman, accepted the word of his chaplain, and did as he had said. And they each—Kshatriyas and ministers and Brahmans and householders—made alike reply: Let his majesty the king celebrate the sacrifice. The time is suitable O King! ‘ Thus did these four, as colleagues by consent, become wherewithal to furnish forth that sacrifice,

13. `King Wide-realm was gifted in the following eight ways:

`He was well born on both sides, on the mother’s side and on the father’s, of pure descent back through seven generations, and no slur was cast upon him, and no reproach, in respect of birth.’

‘ He was handsome, pleasant in appearance, inspiring trust, gifted with great beauty of complexion, fair in colour, fine in presence, stately to behold.’

‘ He was mighty, with great wealth, and large property, with stores of silver and gold, of aids to enjoyment, of goods and corn, with his treasure-houses and his garners full.’

‘ He was powerful, in command of an army, loyal and disciplined in four divisions (of elephants, cavalry, chariots, and bow men), burning up, methinks, his enemies by his very glory.’

‘ He was a believer, and generous, a noble giver, keeping open house, a well in spring whence Samanas and Brahmans, the poor and the wayfarers, beggars, and petitioners might draw, a doer of good deeds. ‘

`He was learned in all kinds of knowledge.’ ` He knew the meaning of what had been said, and could explain, This saying has such and such a meaning, and that such and such “.

‘ He was intelligent, expert and wise and able to think out things present or past or future.

‘ And these eight gifts of his, too, became where withal to furnish forth that sacrifice.’

14. `The Brahman, his chaplain was gifted in the following four ways :

‘ He was well born on both sides, on the mother’s and on the father’s, of pure descent back through seven generations, with no slur cast upon him, and no reproach in respect of birth.

‘ He was a student repeater who knew the mystic verses by heart, master of the three Vedas, with the indices, the ritual, the phonology, and the exegesis (as a fourth), and the legends as a fifth, learned in the idioms and the grammar, versed in Lokayata (Mature-lore) and in the thirty marks on the body of a great man.

‘ He was virtuous, established in virtue, gifted with virtue that had grown great.

‘ He was intelligent, expert, and wise; foremost, or at most the second, among those who hold out the ladle. ‘  ‘ Thus these four gifts of his, too became wherewithal to furnish forth that sacrifice.’

15. And further, O Brahman, the chaplain, before the sacrifice had begun, explained to King Wide-realm the three modes:

Should his majesty the King, before starting on the great sacrifice, feel any such regret as : Great, alas, will be the portion of my wealth used up herein, let not the king harbour such regret. Should his majesty the King, whilst he is offering the great sacrifice, feel any such regret as : Great, alas, will be the portion of my wealth used up herein let not the king harbour such regret. Should his majesty the King, when the great sacrifice has been offered, feel any such regret as Great, alas, will be the portion of my wealth used up herein, let not the king harbour such regret.’

Thus did the chaplain, O Brahman, before the sacrifice, had begun, explained to King Wide-realm the three modes.’

16. `And further, 0 Brahman, the chaplain, before the sacrifice had begun, in order to prevent any   compunction that might afterwards in ten ways, arise as regards those who had taken part therein, said : Now there will come to your sacrifice, Sire, men who destroy the life of living things, and men who refrain therefrom, men who take what has not been given, and men who refrain therefrom, men who speak lies, and men who do not—men who slander and men who do not—men who speak rudely and men who do not—men who chatter vain things and men who refrain therefrom—men who covet and men who covet not—men who harbour illwill and men who harbour it not—men whose views are wrong and men whose views are right. Of each of these let them, who do evil, alone with their evil. For them who do well let your majesty offer, for them, Sire, arrange the rites, for them let the king gratify, in them shall our heart within find peace.

17. `And further, O Brahman, the chaplain, whilst the king was carrying out the sacrifice, instructed and aroused and incited and gladdened his heart in sixteen ways : Should there be people who should say of the king, as he is offering the sacrifice : King Wide-realm is celebrating sacrifice without having invited the four classes of his subjects, without himself having the eight personal gifts, without the assistance of a Brahman who has the four personal gifts.’ Then would they speak not acording to the fact. For the consent of the four classes has been obtained, the king had the eight, and his Brahman has the four, personal gifts. With regard to each and every one of these sixteen conditions the king may rest assured that it has been fulfilled. He can sacrifice, and be glad, and possess his heart in peace.”

18. `And further, O Brahman, at that sacrifice neither were any oxen slain, neither goats, nor fowls, nor fatted pigs, nor were any kinds of living creatures put to death. No trees were cut down to be used as posts, no Dabha grasses mown to strew around the sacrificial spot. And the slaves and messengers and workmen there employed were driven neither by rods nor fear, nor carried on their work weeping with tears upon their faces. Who so chose to help, he worked ; who so chose not to help, worked not. What each chose to do he did; what they chose not to do, that was left undone, With ghee and oil, and butter and milk, and honey and sugar only was that sacrifice accomplished.

19. `And further, O Brahman, the Kshatriya vassels, and the ministers and officials, and the Brahmans of position, and the householders of substance, whether of the country or of the towns, went to King, Wide-realm, taking with them much wealth, and said, This abundant wealth, Sire, have we brought hither for the king’s use. Let his majesty accept it at our hands!”

Sufficient wealth have I, my friends, laid up, the produce of taxation that is just. Do you keep yours, and take away more with you!

When they had thus been refused by the king, they went aside, and considered thus one with the other: It would not be seem us now, were we to take this wealth away again to our own homes. King Wide-realm is offering a great sacrifice. Let us too make an after-sacrifice!”

20. ` So the Kshatriyas established a continual largesse to the east of the king’s sacrificial pit, and the officials to the south thereof, and the Brahmans to the west thereof, and the householders to the north thereof. And the things given, and the manner of their gift, was in all respects like unto the great sacrifice of King Wide-realm himself.’

`Thus, O Brahman, there was a fourfold co-operation, and King Wide-realm was gifted with eight personal gifts, and his officiating Brahman with four. And there were three modes of the giving of that sacrifice. This, 0 Brahman, is what is called the due celebration of a sacrifice in its threefold mode and with its furniture of sixteen kinds.

21. `And when he had thus spoken, those Brahmans lifted up their voices in tumult, and said: How glorious the sacrifice, how pure its accomplishment! But Kutadanta the Brahman sat there in silence.

Then those Brahmans said to Kutadanta : ‘ Why do you not approve the good words of the Samana Gotarna as well-said?’

` I do not fail to approve ; for he who approves not as well-said that which has been well spoken by the Samana Gotama, verily his head would split in twain. But I was considering that the Samana Gotama does not say : “Thus have I heard,” nor “Thus behoves it to be,” but says only, Thus it was then, or It was like that then“. So I thought ; For a certainty the Samana Gotama himself must a.t that time have been King Wide-realm, or the Brahman who officiated for him at that sacrifice. Does the Venerable Gotama admit that he who celebrates such a sacrifice, or causes it to be celebrated, is reborn at the dissolution of the body, after death, into some state of happiness in heaven ?

Yes, O Brahman, that I admit. And at that time I was the Brahman who, as chaplain, had that sacrifice performed.’

22. `Is there, O Gotama, any other sacrifice less difficult and less troublesome, with more fruit and more advantage still than this? ‘ ‘ Yes, 0 Brahman, there is.’ ‘And what, 0 Gotama, may that be?’

`The perpetual gifts kept up in a family where they are given specifically to virtuous recluses.’

23. But what is the reason, O Gotama, and what the cause, why such perpetual giving specifically to virtuous recluses, and kept up in a family, are less difficult and troublesome of greater fruit and greater advantage than that other sacrifice with its three modes and its accessories of sixteen kinds ?

‘ To the latter sort of sacrifice, 0 Brahman, neither will the Arhata go, nor such as have entered on the Arhat way. And why not? Because in it beating with sticks takes place, and seizing by the throat. But they will go to the former, where such things are not. And therefore are such perpetual gifts above the other sort of sacrifice.’

24. ‘ And is there, O Gotama, any other sacrifice less difficult, and less troublesome, of greater fruit and of greater advantage than either of these.’ ‘ Yes, 0 Brahman, there is.’ ‘ And what, 0 Gotama, may that be ?

`The putting up of a dwelling place (Vihara) on behalf of the Order in all the four directions.’

25. And is there, O Gotama, any other sacrifice less difficult and less troublesome, of greater fruit and of greater advantage than each and all of these three?’ ‘Yes, 0 Brahman, there is.’ ‘ And what, 0 Gotama, may that be ?

‘ He who with trusting heart takes a Buddha as his guide, and the Truth, and the Order—that is a sacrifice better than open largeses, better than perpetual alms, better than the gift of a dwelling place.’

26. And is there, O Gotama, any other sacrifice less difficult and less troublesome, of greater fruit and of greater advantage than all these four?’

`When a man with trusting heart takes upon himself the precepts-abstinence from destroying life; abstinence from taking what has not been given ; abstinence from evil conduct in respect of lusts ; abstinence from lying words; abstinence from strong, intoxicating, maddening drinks, the root of carelessness, that is a sacrifice better than open largesses, better than perpetual alms, better than the gift of dwelling places, better than accepting guidance.’

27. `And is there, O Gotama, any other sacrifice less difficult and less troublesome, of greater fruit and of greater advantage than all these five?Yes, O Brahman, there is.’ And what, 0 Gotama, may that be?’

(The answer is the long passage from the Samana-phale Sutta 40, p. 62 (of the text,) down to 75 (p. 74) on the First Ghana, as follows :

1. The Introductory paragraphs on the appearance of a Buddha, his preaching, the conversion of ahearer, and his renunciation of the world.

2. The Silas (minor morality).

3. The paragraph on Confidence.

4. The paragraph on Guarded is the door of his senses.

5. The paragraph on ‘ Mindful and self possessed.’

6. The paragraph on Content.

7. The paragraph on Solitude.

8. The paragraph on the Five Hindrances.

9. The description of the First Ghana.) This, 0 Brahman, is a sacrifice less difficult and less troublesome, of greater fruit and greater advantage than the previous sacrifices,

(The same is then said the Second, Third, and Fourth Ghanas, in succession (as in the Samannao-phalo Sutas 77-82) and of the Insight arising from knowledge (ibid 83, 84), and further (omitting direct mention either way of 85-96 inclusive) of the knowledge of the destruction of the Asavas. the deadly intoxications or floods (ibid. 97-98).

‘ And there is no sacrifice man can celebrate, 0 Brahman, higher and sweeter than this.’

28. And when he had thus spoken, Kutadanta the Brahman said to the Blessed One :

‘ Most excellent, 0 Gotama, are the words of thy mouth, most excellent ! Just as if a man were to set up what has been thrown down, or were to reveal that which has been hidden away, or were to point out the right road to him who has gone astray, or were to bring a light into the darkness so that those who had eyes could see external forms—just even so has the truth been made known to me in many a figure by the Venerable Gotama. I, even I, betake myself to the Venerable Gotama as my guide, to the Doctrine and the Order. May the Venerable One accept me as a disciple, as one who, from this day forth, as long as life endures has taken him as his guide. And I myself, O Gotama, will have the seven hundred bulls, and the seven hundred steers, and the seven hundred heifers, and the seven hundred goats, and the seven hundred rams set free. To them I grant their life. Let them eat green grass and drink fresh water, and may cool breezes waft around them.’

29. Then the Blessed One discoursed to Kutadanta the Brahman in due order; that is to say, he spoke to him of generosity, of right conduct, of heaven, of the danger, the vanity, and the defilement of lusts, of the advantages of renunciation. And when the Blessed One became aware that Kutadanta the Brahman had become prepared, softened, unprejudiced, upraised, and believing in heart then did he proclaim the doctrine the Buddhas alone have won; that is to say, the doctrine of sorrow, of its origin, of its cessation and of the Path. And just as a clean cloth, with all stains in it washed away, will readily take the dye, just even so did Kutadanta the Brahman, even while seated there, obtain the pure and spotless Eye for the Truth. And he knew whatsoever has a beginning, in that is inherent also the necessity of dissolution.

30. And then the Brahman Kutadanta, as one who had seen the Truth, had mastered it, understood it, dived deep down into it. Who had passed beyond doubt, and put away perplexity and gained full confidence, who had become dependent on no other for his knowledge of the teaching of the Master, addressed the Blessed One and said :

` May the venerable Gotama grant me the favour of taking his tomorrow meal with me and also the members of the Order with him. ‘

And the Blessed One signified, by silence, his consent. Then the Brahman Kutadanta, seeing that the Blessed One had accepted, rose from his seat, and keeping his right towards him as he passed, he departed thence. And at daybreak he had sweet food, both hard and soft, made ready at the pit prepared for his sacrifice and had the time announced to the Blessed One: ‘It is time, 0 Gotama and the meal is ready. ‘ And the Blessed One, who had dressed early in the morning, put on his outer robe, and taking his bowl with him, went with the brethren to Kutadanta’s sacrificial pit, and sat down there on the seat prepared for him. And Kutadanta the Brahman satisfied the brethren with the Buddha at their head, with his own hand, with sweet food, both hard and soft, till they refused any more. And when the Blessed One had finished his meal, and cleansed the bowl and his hands, Kutadanta the Brahman took a low seat and seated himself beside him. And when he was thus seated, the Blessed One instructed and aroused

and incited and gladdened Kutadanta the Brahman with religious discourse ; and then arose from his seat and departed thence.

V

Thirdly Buddha denounced the caste system. The Caste System in its present form was not then existing. The bar against inter-dining and inter-marriage had not then become operative. Things were flexible and not rigid as they are now. But the principle of inequality which is the basis of the caste system had become well established and it was against this principle that Buddha carried on a determined and a bitter fight. How strongly was he opposed to the pretensions of the Brahmins for superiority over the other classes and how convincing were the grounds of his opposition are to be found in many of his dialogues. The most important one of these is known as the Ambattha Sutta.

AMBATTHA SUTTA

(A young Brahman’s rudeness and an old one’s faith). 1. Thus have I heard. The Blessed One when once on a tour through the Kosala country with a great company of the brethren, with about five hundred brethern, arrived at a Brahman village in Kosala named Ikkhanankala ; and while there he stayed in the Ikkhanankala Wood.

Now at that time the Brahman Pokkharsadi was dwelling at Ukkattha, a spot teeming with life, with much grassland and woodla.nd and corn, on a royal domain, granted him by King Pasenadi of Kosala as royal gift, with power over it as if he were the king.

2. Now the Brahman Pokkharasadi heard the news : `They say that the Samana Gotama, of the Sakya clan, who went out from a Sakya family to adopt the religious life, has now arrived, with a great company of the brethren of his Order, at lkkhanankala, and is staying there in the lkkhanankala Wood. Now regarding that venerable Gotama, such is the high reputation that has been noised abroad. The Blessed One is an Arahat, a fully awakened one, abounding in wisdom and goodness, happy, with knowledge of the worlds, unsurpassed as a guide to mortals willing to be led, a teacher for gods and men, a Blessed One, a Buddha. He, by himself, thoroughly knows and sees, as it were, face to face this universe, including the worlds above of the gods, the Brahmans, and the Maras, and the world below with its recluses and Brahmans, its princes and peoples, and having known it, he makes his knowledge known to others. The truth, lovely in its origin, lovely in its progress, lovely in its consummation, doth he proclaim, both in the spirit and in the letter, the higher life doth he make known, in all its fullness and in all its purity. `And good is it to pay visits to Arahats like that.’ 3. Now at the time a young Brahman, an Ambattha, was a pupil under Pokkharasadi the Brahman. And he was a repeater (of the sacred words) knowing the mystic verses by heart, one who had mastered the Three Vedas, with the indices, the ritual, the phonology, and the exegesis (as a fourth), and the legends as a fifth learned in the idioms and the grammar, versed in Lokayata sophistry and in the theory of the signs on the body of a great man—so recognised an authority in the system of the threefold Vedic knowledge as expounded by his master, that he could say of him: ‘ What I know that you know, and what you know that I know. ‘.

4. And Pokkharasadi told Ambattha the news, and said : `Come now, dear Ambattha, go to the Samana Gotama, and find out whether the reputation so noised abroad regarding him is in accord with the facts or not, whether the Samana Gotama is such as they say or not ‘. 5. `But how. Sir, shall I know whether that is so or not ?’ ‘ There have been handed down, Ambattha, in our mystic verses thirty-two bodily signs of a great man,—signs which, if a man has, he will become one of two things, and no other. If he dwells at home he will become a sovereign of the world, a righteous king, bearing rule even to the shores of the four great oceans, a conqueror, the protector of his people, possessor of the seven royal treasures. And these are the seven treasures that he has the Wheel, the Elephant, the Horse, the Gem, the Woman, the Treasurer, and the Adviser as a seventh. And he has more than a thousand sons, heroes, mighty in frame, beating down the armies of the foe. And he dwells in complete ascendancy over the wide earth from sea to sea, ruling it in righteousness without the need of baton or of sword. But if he go forth from the household life into the house less state, then he will become a Buddha who removes the veil from the eyes of the world. Now I, Ambattha, am a giver of the mystic verses; you have received them from me. ‘

6. ‘ Very good Sir, said Ambattha in reply; and rising from his seat and paying reverence to Pokkharasadi, he mounted a chariot drawn by mares, and proceeded, with a retinue of young Brahmans, to the Ikkhanankala Wood. And when he had gone on in the chariot as far as the road was practicable for vehicles, he got down, and went on, into the park, on foot.

7. Now at that time a number of the brethren were walking up and down in the open air. And Ambattha went up to them and said: ‘where may the Venerable Gotama be lodging now? We have come hither to call upon him.’

8. Then the brethren thought: This young Brahman Ambattha is of distinguished family, and a pupil of the distinguished Brahman Pokkharasadi. The Blessed One will not find it difficult to hold conversation with such.’ And they said to Ambattha : There Gotama is lodging, where the door is shut, go quietly up and enter the porch gently, and give a cough, and knock on the crossbar. The Blessed One will open the door for you.’

9. Then Ambattha did so. And the Blessed One opened the door, and Ambattha entered in. And the other young Brahmans also went in; and they exchanged with the Blessed One the greetings and compliments of politeness and courtesy, and took their seats. But Ambattha, walking about, said something or other of a civil kind in an off-hand way, fidgetting about the while, or standing up, to the Blessed One sitting there.

10. And the Blessed One said to him ; Is that the way, Ambattha, that you would hold converse with aged teachers, and teachers of your teachers well stricken in years, as you now do, moving about the while or standing, with me thus seated ?

11. `Certainly not, Gotama. It is proper to speak, with a Brahman as one goes along only when the Brahman himself is walking and standing to a Brahman who stands, and seated to a Brahman who has taken his seat, or reclining to a Brahman who reclines. But with shavelings, sham friars, menial black fellows, the off scouring of our kinsman’s heels—with them I would talk as I now do to you.         

‘ But you must have been wanting something, Ambattha, when you come here. Turn your thoughts rather to the object you had in view when you came. This young Brahman Ambattha is ill bred, though he prides himself on his culture ; what can this come from except from want of training?’

12. Then Ambattha was displeased and angry with the Blessed One at being called rude; and at the thought that the Blessed One was vexed with him, he said, scoffing, jeering, and sneering at the Blessed One: ‘ Rough is this Sakya breed of yours, Gotama, and rude, touchy is this Sakya breed of yours and violent. Menials, mere menials, they neither venerate, nor value, nor esteem, nor give gifts to, nor pay honour to Brahmans. That, Gotama, is neither fitting, nor is it seemly.’ Thus did the young Brahman Ambattha for the first time charge the Sakyas with being menials.

13. `But in what then, Ambattha, have the Sakyas given you offence?

 Once, Gotama, I had to go to Kapilvastu on some business or other of Pokkharasadi’s, and went into the Sakyas’ Congress Hall. Now at that time there were a number of Sakyas, old and young, seated in the hall on grand seats, making merry and joking together, nudging one another with their fingers; and for a truth, methinks, it was I myself that was the subject of their jokes; and not one of them even offered me a seat. That, Gotama, is neither fitting, nor is it seemly, that the Sakyas, menials, as they are, mere menials, should neither venerate, nor value, nor esteem, nor give gifts to, nor pay honour to Brahmams.”

Thus did the young Brahman Ambattha for the second time charge the Sakyas with being menials.

14. ‘ Why a quail Ambattha, little hen bird tough she be, can say what she likes in her own nest. And there the Sakyas are at their own home, in Kapilvastu. It is not fitting for you to take offence at so trifling a thing.’

15. `There are these four grades, Gotama,—the nobles, the Brahmans, the trades folk, and the work-people. And of these four, three—the nobles, the trades folk, and workpeople—are, verily, but attendants on the Brahmans. So, Gotama, that is neither fitting nor is it seemly, that the Sakyas, menials as they are, mere menials should neither venerate, nor value, nor esteem, nor give gifts to, nor pay honour to the Brahmans.’

1* Thus did the young Brahman Ambattha for the third time charged the sakyes with being menials.

16. Then the Blessed One thought thus: ‘ This Ambattha is very set on humbling the Sakyas with his charge of servile origin. What if I were to ask him as to his own lineage.’ And he said to him:

`And what family do you then, Ambattha, belong to?’ ‘ Yes, but if one were to follow up your ancient name and lineage, Ambattha, on the father’s and the mother’s side, it would appear that the Sakyas were once your masters, and that you are the offspring of one of their slave girls. But the Sakyas trace their line back to Okkaka the kings.’

‘ Long ago, Ambattha, King Okkaka, wanting to divert the succession in favour of the son of his favourite queen, banished his elder children-Okkamukha, Karanda, Hatthinika, and Sinipura-from the land. And being thus banished they took up their dwelling on the slopes of the Himalaya, on the borders of a lake where a mighty oak tree grew. And through fear of injuring the purity of their line they intermarried with their sisters.

Now Okkaka the king asked the ministers at his court : Where, Sirs, are the children now?”

There is a spot, Sire, on the slopes of the Himalaya, on the borders of a lake, where there grows a mighty oak (sako). There do they dwell. And lest they should injure the purity of their line they have married their own (sakahi) sisters.’

‘ Then did Okkaka the king burst forth in admiration: Hearts of oak (sakya) are those young fellows! Right well they hold their own (parama sakya)!

`That is the reason, Ambattha, why they are known as Sakyas. Now Okkaka had slave girl called Disa. She gave birth to a black baby. And no sooner was it born than the little black thing said, Wash me, mother. Bathe me, mother. Set me free, mother of this dirt. So shall I be of use to you.”

Now, just as now, Ambattha, people call devils, devils“, so then they called devils. black fellows (kanhe). And they said, This fellow spoke as soon as he was born.’ Tis a black thing (Kanha) that is born, a devil has been born! And that is the origin, Ambattha, of the Kanhayanas. He was the ancestor of the Kanhayanas. And thus is it, Ambattha, that if one were to follow up your ancient name and lineae, on the father’s and on the mother’s side, it would appear that the Sakyas were once your masters, and that you are the offspring of one of their slave girls.’

17. When he had thus spoken the young Brahmans said to the Blessed One : ‘ Let not the Venerable Gotama, humble Ambattha too sternly with this reproach of being descended from a slave girl. He is well born, Gotama, and of good family; he is versed in the sacred hymns, an able reciter, a learned man. And he is able to give answer to the Venerable Gotama in these matters.

18. Then the Blessed One said to them: Quite so. If you thought otherwise, then it would be for you to carry on our discussion further. But as you think so, let Ambattha himself speak.’

19. ‘ We do not think so ; and we will hold our peace. Ambattha is able to give answer to the venerable Gotama in these matters.’

20. Then the Blessed One said to Ambattha the Brahman: `Then this further question arises, Ambattha, a very reasonable one which even though unwillingly, you should answer. If you do not give a clear reply, or go off upon another issue, or remain silent, or go away, then your head will split in pieces on the spot. What have you heard, when Brahmans old and well stricken in years, teachers of yours or their teachers, were talking together, as to whence the Kanhayanas draw their origin, and who the ancestor was to whom they trace themselves back?

And when he had thus spoken Ambattha remained silent. And the Blessed One asked the same question again. And still Ambattha remained silent. Then the Blessed One said to him: ‘ You had better answer, now, Ambattha. This is no time for you to hold your peace. For whosoever, Ambattha, does not, even up to the third time of asking, answer a reasonable question put by a Tathagata (by one who has won the truth), his head splits into pieces on the spot.’

21. Now at that time the spirit who bears the thunderbolt stood over above Ambattha in the sky with a mighty mass of iron, all fiery, dazzling, and aglow, with the intention, if he did not answer, there and then to split his head in pieces. And the Blessed One perceived the spirit bearing the thunderbolt, and so did Ambattha the Brahman. And Ambattha on becoming aware of it, terrified, startled, and agitated, seeking safety and protection and help from the Blessed One, crouched down besides him in awe, and said : What was it the Blessed One said ? Say it once again !

`What do you think. Ambattha? What have you heard, when Brahmans old and well stricken in years, teachers of yours or their teachers, were talking together, as to whence the Kanhayanas draw their origin, and who the ancestor was to whom they trace themselves back?’

`Just so, Gotama, did I hear, even as the Venerable Gotama hath said. That is the origin of the Kanhayana, and that the ancestor to whom they trace themselves back.’

22. And when he had thus spoken the young Brahmans fell into tumult, and uproar, and turmoil: and said : `Low born they say, is Ambattha the Brahman: his family, they say is not of good standing: they say he is descended from a slave girl: and the Sakyas were his masters. We did not suppose that the Samana Gotama whose words are righteousness itself, was not a man to be trusted! ‘

23. And the Blessed One thought: They go too far these Brahmans in their depreciation of Ambattha as the offspring of a slave girl. Let me set him free from their reproach. And he said to them :  Be not too severe in disparaging Ambattha the Brahman on the ground of his descent. That Kanha became a mighty seer. He went into the Dekkan there he learnt mystic verses, and returning to Okkaka the king, he demanded his daughter Madda-rupi in marriage, To him the king in answer said: “Who forsooth is this fellow who son of my slave girl as he is asks for my daughter in marriage :” and angry and displeased, he fitted an arrow to his bow. But neither could he let the arrow fly nor could he take it off the string again.

    Then the ministers and courtiers went to Kanha the seer, and said : “et the king go safe, Sir, let the king go safe.”

The king shall suffer no harm. But should he shoot the arrow downwards, then would the earth dry up as far as his realm extends.” Let the king, Sir, go safe, and the country too.” “The king shall suffer no harm, nor his land. But should he shoot the arrow upwards, the god would not rain for seven years as far as his realm extends.”

Let the king, Sir, go safe, and the country too.” “The king shall suffer no harm nor his land. But should he shoot the arrow upwards, the god would not rain for seven years as far as his realm extends.”

“Let the king, Sir, go safe, and the country too: and let the god rain.”

“The king shall suffer no harm, nor the land either, and the god shall rain. But let the king aim the arrow at his eldest son. The prince shall suffer no harm, not a hair of him shall be touched.”

Then, O Brahmans, the ministers told this to Okkaka, and said: Let the king aim at his eldest son. He will suffer neither harm nor terror.” And the king did so, and no harm was done. But the king, terrified at the lesson given him, gave the man his daughter Madda-rupi as wife. You should not, 0 Brahmans, be too severe to disparage Ambattha in the matter of his slave-girl ancestry. That Kanha was a mighty seer.’

24. Then the Blessed One said to Ambattha : What think you, Ambattha? Suppose a young Kshatriya should have connection with a Brahman maiden, and from their intercourse a son should be born. Now would the son thus come to the Brahman maiden through the Kshatriya youth receive a seat and water (as token of respect) from the Brahmans? ` Yes, he would. Gotama.’

` But would the Brahmans allow him to partake of the feast offered to the dead. or of the food boiled in milk. or of the offerings to the gods. or of food sent as a present ? ` Yes. they would Gotama. ‘

`But would the Brahmans teach him their verses or not?’  They would Gotama.’  But would he be shut off or not from their women?’ ‘ He would not be shut off.’

` But would the Kshatriyas allow him to receive the consecration ceremony of a Kshatriya?’ ‘Certainly not Gotama.’

 Because he is not of pure descent on the mother’s side.’ 25. Then what think you Ambattha? Suppose a Brahman youth should have connection with a Kshatriya maiden, and from their intercourse a son should be born. Now would the son come to the Kshatriya maiden through the Brahman youth receive a seat and water (as token of respect) from the Brahmans ? ‘ ‘Yes, he would, Gotama.’

‘ But would the Brahmans allow him to partake of the feast offered to the dead, or of food boiled in milk, or of an offering to the gods, or of food sent as a present? ‘ ‘ Yes, they would, Gotama.’

‘ But would the Brahmans teach him their verses or not ?’ ‘They would, Gotama.’

‘ But would the Kshatriyas allow him to receive the consecration ceremony of a Kshatriya. ‘ `Certainly not, Gotama.Why not that ?’ 

‘ Because he is not of pure descent on the father’s side.’ 26. ‘ Then, Ambattha, whether one compares women with women, or men with men, the Kshatriyas are higher and the Brahmans inferior.

‘ And what think you, Ambattha ? Suppose the Brahmans, for some offence or other, were to outlaw a Brahman by shaving him and pouring ashes over his head, were to banish him from the land from the township. Would he be offered a seat or water among the Brahmans ? ‘ ‘ Certainly not, Gotama.’

‘ Or would the Brahmans allow him to partake of the food offered to the dead, or of the food boiled in milk, or of the offerings to the gods, or of food sent as a present ? ‘ ‘ Certainly not, Gotama.’

‘ Or would the Brahmans teach him their verses or not ? ‘ `Certainly not, Gotama.’

`And would he be shut off, or not, from their women ?’ ‘He would be shut off.’

27. `But what think you, Ambattha? If the Kshatriyas had in the same way outlawed a Kshatriya and banished him from the land or the township, would he, among the Brahmans, be offered water and a seat ? ‘ `Yes, he would, Gotama.’

‘ And would he be allowed to partake of the food offered to the dead, or of the food boiled in milk, or of the offerings to the gods. or of food sent as a present ?’

`He would, Gotama.

`And would the Brahmans teach him their verses ?’ ‘They would, Gotama?

`And would he beshut off, or not from their women ?’ ‘ He would not, Gotama.’

` But thereby, Ambattha, the Kshatriya would have fallen into the deepest degradation, shaven as to his head, cut dead with the ash-basket, banished from land and townships. So that, even when a Kshatriya has fallen into the deepest degradation, still it holds good that the Kshatriyas are higher, and the Brahmans inferior.

28. ‘ Moreover it was one of the Brahma gods, Sanam-kumara, who uttered this stanza.’

The Kshatriya is the best of those among this folk who put their trust in lineage.

But he who is perfect in wisdom and righteousness, he is the best among gods and men.

`Now this stana, Ambattha, was well sung and not ill sung by the Brahma Sanam-kumara well said and not ill said full of meaning and not void thereof. And I too approve it, ` I also ‘ Ambattha says:

“The Kshatriya is the best of those among this folk who put their trust in lineage,

But he who is perfect in wisdom and righteousness, he is the best among gods and men.”

              HERE ENDS THE FIRST PORTION FOR RECITATION

1. `But what Gotama is the righteousness and what the wisdom spoken of in that verse?’

`In the supreme perfection in wisdom and righteousness, Ambattha. there is no reference to the question either of birth, or of lineage, or of the pride which says: You are held as worthy as I , or You are not held as worthy as I“. It is where the talk is of marrying, or giving in marriage, that reference is made to such things as that. For whosoever, Ambattha, are in bondage to the notions of birth or of lineage, or to the pride of social position, or of connection by marriage. They are far from the best wisdom and righteousness. It is only by having got rid of all such bondage that one can realise for himself that supreme perfection in wisdom and in conduct.

2. `But what Gotama is that conduct, and what that wisdom ?’ [Here follow, under Morality (Sila)]

The introductory paragraphs (40 42 of the ‘Samanaphala’ pp. 62. 63 of the text) on the appearance of a Buddha, his preaching the conversion of a hearer, and his renunciation of the world: then come,

1. The Silas above pp. 4-12 (8-27) of the text. Only the refrain differs. It runs here, at the end of each clause, through the whole of this repeated passage: `This is reckoned in him as morality.’ Then under Conduct (Karuna).

2. The paragraph on `Confidence,’ above, p. 69 of the text 63. The refrain from here onwards. This is reckoned to him as conduct.

3. The paragraph on `Guarded is the door of the senses’ above. p. 70 of the text, 64.

4. The paragraph on `Mindful and self-possessed,’ above, p. 70 of the text 65.

5. The paragraph on `Content,’ above. p. 71 of the text, 66.

6. The paragraph on `Solitude,’ above, p. 71 of the text, 67.

7. The paragraphs on the ‘ Five Hindrances,’ above pp, 71-2 of the text, 68-74.

8. The paragraphs on the `Four Rapt Contemplations’ above, 73-76, pp. 75-82. The refrain at the end of each of them (’ higher and better than the last ‘) is here of course, to be read not as higher fruit of the life of a recluse, but as higher conduct.

UNDER WISDOM (VIGGA)

9. The Paragraphs on `Insight arising from Knowledge (Nana-dassanam), above, p. 76 of the text, 83, 84. The refrain from here onwards is: `This is reckoned in him as wisdom, and it is higher and sweeter than the last.’

10. The paragraphs on the ‘ Mental Image,above, p. 77 of the text 85, 86.

11. The paragraphs on `Mystic Gifts’ (lddhi), above, p. 77 of the text, 87, 88.

12. The paragrphs on the ‘ Heavenly Ear (Dibbasota), above p. 79 of the text, 89, 90.

13. The paragraphs on ‘ Knowledge of the hearts of others ‘ (Kato-pariya-nanam) above p. 79 of the text 91, 92.

14. The paragraphs on `Memory of one’s own previous births’ (Pubbe-nivasa-anussati-nama) above, p. 81 of the text, 93, 94.

15. The paragraph on the `Divine Eye (Dibbakakkhu), above, p. 82 of the text, 95, 96.

16. The paragraphs on the `Destruction of the Deadly Floods’ (Asavanam Khaya-nanam), above, p. 83 of the text. 97, 98.

‘ Such a man, Ambattha, is said to be perfect in wisdom, perfect in conduct, perfect in wisdom and conduct. And there is no other perfection in wisdom and conduct higher and sweeter than this.’

3. `Now, Ambattha, to this supreme perfection in wisdom and goodness there are Four Leakages. And what are the four?’

`In case, Ambattha any recluse or Brahman, without having thoroughly attained unto this supreme perfection in wisdom and conduct, with his yoke on his shoulder (to carry fire-sticks, a water-pot, needles, and the rest of a mendicant friar’s outfit), should plunge into the depths of the forest, vowing to himself: I will henceforth be one of those who live only on fruits that have fallen of themselves “— then, verily, he turns that out worthy only to be a servant unto him that hath attained to wisdom and rightsouness.’

`And again, Ambattha in case any recluse or Brahman, without having thoroughly attained unto this supreme perfection in wisdom and conduct, and without having attained to living only on fruits fallen of themselves, taking a hoe and a basket with him, should plunge into the depths of the forest, vowing to himself: I will henceforth be one of those who live only on bulbs and roots of fruits.” Then, verily he turns out worthy only to be a servant unto him who hath attained to wisdom and righteousness.’

`And again Ambattha in case any recluse or Brahman without having thoroughly attained unto this supreme perfection in wisdom and conduct, and without having attained to living only on fruits fallen of themselves, and without having attained to living only on bulbs and roots and fruits, should build himself a fire shrine near the boundaries of some village or some town and there dwell serving the fire-god, then verily he turns out worthy only to be a servant unto him that hath attained to wisdom and righteousness.’

`And again Ambattha in case any recluse or Brahman without having thoroughly attained unto this supreme perfection in wisdom and conduct, and without having attained to living only on fruits fallen of themselves, and without having attained to living only on bulbs and roots and fruits, and without having attained to serving the fire-god, should build himself a foundered almshouse at a crossing where four high roads meet, and dwell there, saying to himself: Whosoever, whether recluse or Brahman shall pass here, from either of these four directions, him will I entertain according to my ability and according to my power—then, verily, he turns out worthy only to be a servant unto him who hath attained to wisdom and righteousness.’

`These are the Four Leakage, Ambattha, to supreme perfection in righteousness and conduct.’

4. `Now what think you, Ambattha? Have you, as one of a class of pupils under the same teacher, been instructed in this supreme perfection of wisdom and conduct ?

 Not that, Gotama. How little is it that I can profess to have learnt! How supreme this perfection of wisdom and conduct! Far is it from me to have been trained therein?’

Then what think you, Ambattha? Although you have not thoroughly attained unto this supreme perfection of wisdom and goodness, have you been trained to take the yoke upon your shoulders. and plunge into the depths of the forest as one who would fain observe the vow of living only on fruits fallen of themselves ?’ `Not even that, Gotama’.

`Then what think you Ambattha? Althougn you have not attained unto this supreme perfection of wisdom and goodness, nor have attained to living on fruits fallen of themselves, have you been trained to take hoe and basket, and plunge into the depths of the forest as one who would fain observe the vow of living only on bulbs and roots and fruits? ‘ Not even that, Gotama’

`Then what think you, Ambattha? Althougn you have not attained unto this supreme perfection of wisdom and goodness, and have not attained to living on fruits fallen of themselves, and have not attained to living on bulbs and roots and fruits, have you been taught to build yourself a fire-shrine on the borders of some village or some town. and dwell there as one who would fain serve the fire-god ?’ ‘Not even that, Gotama.’

‘ Then what think you, Ambattha ? Although you have not attained unto this supreme perfection of wisdom and goodness, and have not attained to living on fruits fallen of themselves, and have not attained to living on bulbs and roots and fruits, and have not attained to serving the firegod, have you been taught to build yourself a four-doored almshouse at a spot where four high roads cross, and dwell there as one who would fain observe the vow to entertain whosoever might pass that way, from any of the four directions, according to your ability and according to your power ?’ ‘ Not even that, Gotama.’

5. ‘ So then you, Ambattha, as a pupil, have fallen short of due training, not only in the supreme wisdom and conduct, but even in any one of the Four Leakages by which the complete attainment thereof is debarred. And your teacher too, the Brahman Pokkharasadi, has told you this saying : Who are these shavelings, sham friars, menial black fellows, the offscouring of our kinsman’s heels, that they should claim converse with Brahmans versed in the threefold Vedic Lore! he himself not having even fulfilled any one even of these lesser duties (which lead men to neglect the higher ones). See, Ambattha, how deeply your teacher the Brahman Pokkharasadi has herein done you wrong.’

6. And the Brhman Pokkharasadi Ambattha, is in the enjoyment of a grant from Pasenadi, the king of Kosala. But the king does not allow him to come into his presence. When he consults with him he speaks to him only from behind a curtain. How is it, Ambattha, that the very King, from whom he accepts this pure and lawful maintenance, King Pasendadi of Kosala, does not admit him to his presence? See, Ambattha, how deeply your teacher the Brahman Pokkharasadi, has herein done you wrong.’

7. ` Now what think you, Ambattha ? Suppose a king, either seated on the neck of his elephant or on the back of his horse, or standing on the footrug of his chariot, should discuss some resolution of state with his chiefs or princes, and suppose as he left the spot and stepped on one side, a workman (Sudra) or the slave of a workman should come up and. standing there, should discuss the matter, saying: Thus and thus said Pasendadi the King.” Although he should speak as the king might have spoken, or discuss as the king might have done, would he thereby be the king, or even as one of his officers ?Certainly not, Gotama.’

8. `But just so, Ambattha, those ancient poets (Rishis) of the Brahmans, the authors of the verses, the utterers of the verses whose ancient form of words so chanted, uttered, or composed the Brahmans of to-day chant over again and rehearse, intoning or reciting exactly as has been intoned or recited—to wit, Atthaka, Vamaka, Vamadeva, Yamataggi, Angirasa, Bharadvaja, Vasettha, Vessamitta, Kassapa, and Bhagu—though you can say : ‘ I as a pupil know by heart their verses `that you should on that account by a Rishi, or have attained to the state of a Rishi—such a condition of things has no existence!

9. `Now what think you, Ambattha? What have you heard when Brahmans. old and well stricken in years, teachers of yours of their teachers, were talking together—did those ancient Rishis whose verses you so chant over and repeat, parade about well groomed, perfumed, trimmed as to their hair and beard adorned with garlands and gems, clad in white garments, in the full possession and enjoyment of the five pleasures of sense, as you and your teacher too, do now ?’ ‘Not that, Gotama.’

‘ Or did they live, as their food, on boiled rice of the best sorts, from which all the black specks had been sought out and removed, and flavoured with sauces and curries of various kind as you, and your teacher too, do now ? ‘ `Not that, Gotama.’

Or were they waited upon by women with fringes and furbelows round their loins, as you, and your teacher too, do now?

` Or did they go about driving chariots, drawn by mares with plaited manes and tails, using long wands and goads the while, as you and your teacher too, do now?’ ‘Not that Gotama.”

`Or did they have themselves guarded in fortified towns, with moats dug out round them and crossbars let down before the gates, by men girt with long swords, as you, and your teacher too, do now?’ ‘ Not that Gotama.’

10. `So then, Ambattha, neither are you a Rishi, nor your teacher, nor do you live under the conditions under which the Rishis lived. But whatsoever it may be, Ambattha, concerning which you are in doubt or perplexity about me, ask me as to that, I will make it clear by explanation.’

11.. Then the Blessed One went forth from his chamber, and began to walk up and down that Ambattha did the same. And as he thus walked up and down, following the Blessed One, he took stock of the thirty-two signs of a great man, whether they appeared on the body of the Blessed One or not. And he perceived them all save only two. With respect to those two—the concealed member and the extent of tongue—he was in doubt and perplexity, not satisfied not sure.

12. And the Blessed One knew that he was so in doubt. And he so arranged matters by his Wondrous Gift that Ambattha the Brahman saw how that part of the Blessed One that ought to be hidden by clothes was enclosed in a sheath. And the Blessed One so bent round his tongue that he touched and stroked both his ears, touched and stroked both his nostrils, and the whole circumstance of his forehead he covered with his tongue.

And Ambattha, the young Brahman, thought: `The Samana Gotama is endowed with the thirty-two signs of a great man, with them all, not only with some of them.’ And he said to the Blessed One : ‘ And now, Gotama, we would fain depart. We are busy and have much to do.’

`Do Ambattha, what seemed to you fit.’

And Ambattha mounted his chariot drawn by mares, and departed thence.

13. Now at that time the Brahman Pokkharasadi had gone forth from Ukkattha with a great retinue of Brahmans, and was seated in his own pleasance waiting there for Ambattha. And Ambattha came on to the pleasance. And when he had come in his chariot as far as the path was practicable for chariots, he descended from it, and came on foot to where Pokkharasadi was, and saluted him, and look his seat respectfully on one side. And when he was so seated, Pokkharasadi said to him.

14. `Well. Ambattha! Did you see the Blessed One ?’ ‘ Yes, Sir, we saw him.’

`Well! is the Venerable Gotama so as the reputation about him I told you of declares, and not otherwise. Is he such a one, or is he not ?’

`He is so, Sir, as his reputation declares, and not otherwise. Such is he, not different. And he is endowed with the thirty-two signs of a great man, with all of them, not only with some.’ ‘ And did you have any talk, Ambattha, with the Samana Gotama ?’ ‘Yes, Sir, I had.’ ‘And how did the talk go?’

Then Ambattha told the Brahman Pokkharasadi all the talk that he had with the Blessed One.

15. When he had thus spoken, Pokkharasadi said to him : `Oh, you wiseacre! Oh! you dullard! Oh! you expert, forsooth, in our threefold Vedic Lore! A man, they say, who should carry out his business thus, must, on the dissolution of the body, after death, be reborn into some dismal state of misery and woe. What could the very points you pressed in your insolent words lead up to, if not to the very disclosures the venerable Gotama made? What a wiseacre, what a dullard : what an expert, forsooth, in our threefold Vedic lore!’ And angry and displeased, he struck out with his foot, and rolled Ambattha over. And he wanted, there and then, himself to go and call on the Blessed One.

1. But the Brahmanas there spake thus to Pokkharasadi: `It is much too late. Sir, today to go to call on the Samana Gotama. The venerable Pokkharasadi can do so tomorrow.

So Pokkharasadi had sweet food, both hard and soft, made ready at his own house, and taken on wagons, by the light of blazing torches, out to Ukkattha. And he himself went on to the Ikkhanankala Wood, driving in his chariot as far as the road was practicable for vehicles and then going on foot, to where the Blessed One was. And when he had exchanged with the Blessed One the greetings and compliments of politeness and courtesy, he took his seat on one side, and said to the Blessed One :

17. ‘ Has our pupil Gotama the young Brahman Ambattha, been here ? ‘ `Yes. Brahman, he has.’

`And did you, Gotama, have any talk with him?’ ‘ Yes. Brahman, I had.’

`And on what wise was the talk that you had with him ?’ 18. Then the Blessed One told the Brahman Pokkharasadi all the talk that had taken place. And when he had thus spoken Pokkharasadi said to the Blessed One :

`He is young and foolish, Gotama, that young Brahman Ambattha. Forgive him. Gotama’

`Let him be quite happy, Brahman, that young Brahman Ambattha19. And the Brahman Pokkharasadi took stock, on the body of the Blessed One, of the thirty two marks of a Great Being. And he saw them all plainly, save only two. As to two of them the sheath concealed member and the extensive tongue he was still in doubt and undecided. But the Blessed One showed them to Pokkharasadi, even as he had shown them to Ambattha. And Pokkharasadi perceived that the Blessed One was endowed with the thirty two marks of a Great Being, with all of them, not only with some. And he said to the Blessed One:  `May the venerable Gotama grant me the favour of taking his tomorrow’s meal with me and also the members of the Order with him ‘ And the Blessed One accepted, by silence, his request.

20. Then the Brahman Pokkharasadi seeing that the Blessed One had accepted, had (on the morrow) the time announced to him : `It is time. Oh Gotama, the meal is ready.‘ And the Blessed One who had dressed in the early morning, put on his outer robe, and taking his bowl with him, went with the brethren to Pokkharasadi’s house, and sat down on the seat prepared for him. And Pokkharasadi the Brahman. satisfied the Blessed One, with his own hand with sweet food, both hard and soft, until he refused any more, and the young Brahmans the members of the Order. And when the Blessed One had finished his meal, and cleansed the bowl and his hands, Pokkharasadi took a low seat, and sat down beside him.

21. Then to him thus seated the Blessed One discoursed in due order ; that is to say he spoke to him of generosity, of right conduct, of heaven, of the danger, the vanity, and the defilement of lusts, of the advantages of renunciation. And when the Blessed One saw that Pokkharasadi the Brahman, had become prepared, softened, unprejudiced, upraised, and believing in heart, then he proclaimed the doctrine the Buddhas alone have won ; that is to say, the doctrine of sorrow, of its origin, of its cessation, and of the Path. And just as a clean cloth from which all stain has been washed away will readily take the dye, just even so did Pokkharasadi the Brahman, obtain, even while sitting there, the pure and spotless Eye for the Truth, and he knew: `Whatsoever has a beginning in that is inherent also the necessity of dissolution.’

22. And then the Brahman Pokkarasadi as one who had seen the Truth, had mastered it, understood it, dived deep down into it, who had passed beyond doubt and put away perplexity and gained full confidence, who had become dependent on no other man for his knowledge of the teaching of the Master, addressed the Blessed One and said :

`Most excellent Oh Gotama (are the words of thy mouth), most excellent! Just as if a man were to set up that which has been thrown down, or were to reveal that which has been hidden away, or were to point out the right road to him who has gone astray, or were to bring a light into the darkness so that those who had eyes could see external forms,—just even so, Lord, has the truth been made known to me, in many a figure, by the venerable Gotama. And I, Oh Gotama, with my sons, and my wife, and my people, and my companions, betake myself to the venerable Gotama as my guide, to the truth, and to the Order. May the venerable Gotama accept me as a disciple, as one who from this day forth, as long as life endures, has taken him as his guide. And just as the venerable Gotama visits the families of others, his disciples at Ukkatha, so let him visit mine. Whosoever there may be there, of Brahmans or their wives, who shall pay reverence to the venerable Gotama or stand up in his presence, or offer him a seat or water, or take delight in him, to him that will be for long, a cause of weal and bliss.’

It is well, Brahman, what you say.’ Here ends the Ambattha Sutta.

VI

In the matter of his opposition to Caste, Buddha practised what he preached. He did what the Aryan Society refused to do. In the Aryan Society the Shudra or low caste man could never become a Brahman. But Buddha not only preached against caste but admitted the Shudra and the low caste to the rank of a Bhikku who held the same rank in Buddhism as the Brahman did in Brahmanism. As Rhys Davis points out: (Quotation not given)

In the first place, as regards his own Order, over which alone he had complete control, he ignores completely and absolutely all advantages or disadvantages arising from birth, occupation, and social status, and sweeping away all barriers and disabilities arising from the arbitrary rules of mere ceremonial or social impurity.

One of the most distinguished members of his Order, the very one of them who was referred to as the chief authority after Gotama himself, on the rules of the Order, was Upali, who had formerly been a barber. one of the despised occupations. So Sunita, one of the brethren whose verses are chosen for insertion in the Thera Gatha, was a Pukkusa. one of the low tribes. Sati, the profounder of a deadly heresy, was of the sons of the fisher folk, afterwards a low caste, and even then an occupation, on account of its cruelty, particularly abhorred. Nanda was a cowherd. The two Panthakas were born out of wedlock, to a girl of good family through intercoure with a slave (so that by the rule laid down in Manu 31. they were actually outcasts). Kapa was the daughter of a deer-stalker, Punna and Punnika had been slave girls. Sumangalamata was daughter and wife to workers in rushes, and Subha was the daughter of a smith. More instances could doubtless be quoted and others will become known when more texts are published.

It does not show much historical insight to sneer at the numbers as small, and to suggest that the supposed enlightenment or liberality was mere pretence. The facts speak for themselves; and the percentage of low-born members of the Order was probably in fair proportion to the percentage of persons belonging to the despised jatis and sippas as compared with the rest of the population. Thus of the Theris mentioned in the Theri Gatha we know the social position of sixty, of whom five are mentioned above that is, 81/2 per cent of the whole number were base-born. It is most likely that this is just about the proportion which persons in similar social rank bore to the rest of the population.

Just as Buddha levelled up the position of the Shudras and the low caste men by admitting them to the highest rank namely that of Bhikkus, he also levelled up the position of women. In the Aryan Society women were placed on the same position as the Shudras and in all Aryan literature women and Shudras are spoken of together as persons belonging to the same status. Both of them were denied the right to take Sanyas as Sanyas was the only way open to salvation. Women and Shudras were beyond salvation. Buddha broke this Aryan rule in the case of women as he did in the case of the Shudras. Just as a Shudra could become a Bhikku so a woman could become a nun. This was taking her to the highest status then conceivable in the eyes of the Aryan Society.

Another issue on which Buddha fought against the leaders of the Aryan Society was the issue of the Ethies of teachers and teaching. The leaders of the Aryan Society held the view that learning and education was the privilege of the Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas. The Shudras were not entitled to education. They insisted that it would be danger to social order if they taught women or any males not twice-born. Buddha repudiated this Aryan doctrine. As pointed out by Rhys Davis on this question is “That everyone should be allowed to learn; that everyone, having certain abilities, should be allowed to teach ; and that, if he does teach, he should teach all to all ; keeping nothing back, shutting no one out. In this connection reference may be made to the dialogue between Buddha and the Brahman Lohikka and which is known as the Lohikka Sutta.

LOHIKKA SUTTA

(Some points in the Ethics of Teaching)

1. Thus have I heard. The Exalted One, when once passing on a tour through the Kosala districts with a great multitude of the members of the Order, with about five hundred Bhikshus, arrived at Salavatika. (Village surrounded by a row of Sala trees). Now at that time Lohikka the Brahman was established at Salavatika, a spot teeming with life, with much grassland and woodland and corn, on a royal domain granted him by King Pasenadi of Kosala, as a royal gift, with power over it as if he were the king.

2. Now at that time Lohikka the Brahman was thinking of harbouring the following wicked view; `Suppose that a Samana or a Brahmana have reached up to some good state (of mind), then he should tell no one else about it. For what can one man do for another? To tell others would be like the man who, having broken through an old bond, should entangle himself in a new one. Like that, I say, is this (desire to declare to others) ; it is a form of lust. For what can one man do for another?’

Now Lohikka the Brahman heard the news: `They say that the Samana Gotama, of the sons of the Sakyas, who went out from the Sakya clan to adopt the religious life, has now arrived, with a great company of the brethren of his Order, on his tour through the Kosala districts, at Salavatika. Now regarding that venerable Gotama, such is the high reputation that has been noised abroad : that Exalted One is an Arhat, fully awakened, abounding in wisdom and goodness, happy, with knowledge of the worlds, unsurpassed as a guide to mortals willing to be led, a teacher for gods and men, an exalted one, a Buddha. He, by himself thoroughly knows, and sees as it were face to face. This universe-including the worlds above of the gods, the Brahmans and the Maras ; and the world below with its Samanas and Brahmans. Its princes and peoples and having known it, he makes his knowledge known to others. The truth, lovely in its origin, lovely in its progress, lovely in consummation, doth he proclaim both in the spirit

and in the letter. The higher life doth he make known in all its fullness, and in all its purity. And good is it to pay visists to Arhats like that.’

4. Then Lohikka the Brahman said to Bhesika the barber, Come now, good Bhesika, go where the Samana Gotama is staying, and on your arrival, ask in my name as to whether his sickness and indisposition as abated, as to his health and vigour and condition of ease; and speak thus : May the venerable Gotama, and with him the brethren of the order, accept the tomorrow’s meal from Lohikka the Brahman.”

5. Very well, Sir, said Bhesika the barber, acquiescing in the word of Lohikka the Brahman and did so even as he had been enjoined. And the Exalted One consented, by silence, to his request.

6. And when Bhesika the barber perceived that the Exalted One had consented, he rose from his seat and passing the Exalted One with his right hand towards him, went to Lohikka the Brahman, and on his arrival spake to him thus :

We addressed that Exalted One. Sir. in your name, even as you commanded. And the Exalted One hath consented to come.’

7. Then Lohikka the Brahman, when the night had passed made ready at his own dwelling place sweet food, both hard and soft, a.nd said to Bhesika the barber: Come now, good Bhesika, go where the Samana Gotama is staying, and on your arrival, announce the time to him, saying : It is time, O Gotama, and the meal is ready.”

‘ Very well, Sir ‘, said Bhesika the barber in assent to the words of Lohikka the Brahman: and did so even as he had been enjoined.

And the Exalted One, who had robed himself early in the morning, went robed, and carrying his bowl with him, with the brethren of the Order, towards Salavatika.

8. Now, as he went, Bhesika the barber walked step by step, behind the Exalted One. And he said to him :

The following wicked opinion has occurred to Lohikka the Brahman ; Suppose that a Samana or a Brahmana have reached up to some good state (of mind), then he should tell no one else about it. For what can one man do for another? To tell others would be like the man who, having broken through an old bond, should entangle himself in a new one. Like that, I say, is this (desire to declare to others) ; it is a form of lust”, Twere well. Sir, if the Exalted One would disabuse his mind thereof. For what can one man do for another ?’

That may well be, Bhesika, that may well be.’ 9. And the Exalted One went on to the dwelling-place of Lohikka the Brahman, and sat down on the seat prepared for him. And Lohikka the Brahman satisfied the Order, with the Buddha at its head, with his own hand, with sweet food both hard and soft, until they refused any more. And when the Exalted One had finished his meal, and had cleansed the bowl and his hands, Lohikka the Brahman brought a low seat and sat down beside him. And to him, thus seated the Exalted One spake as follows:                                    

` Is it true what they say, Lohikka, that the following wicked opinion has arisen in your mind ; (and he set forth the opinion as above set I forth)?’                                                                  That is so Gotarna.’

10. Now what think you, Lohikka? Are you not etablished at Salavatika ? ‘ `Yes. that is so, Gotama.’

`Then suppose, Lohikka. one were to speak thus: “Lohikka the Brahman has domain at Salavatika. Let him alone enjoy all the revenue and all the produce of Salavatika, allowing nothing to anybody else! Would the utterer of that speech be danger-maker as touching the men who live in dependance upon you, or not?’ ‘He would be danger-maker, Gotama

And making that danger, would he be a person who sympathised with their welfare, or not?’

‘ He would not be considering their welfare, Gotama.’ ‘ And not considering their welfare, would his heart stand fast in love towards them. or in enmity ?’ ‘ In enmity. Gotama.’

‘ But when one’s heart stands fast in enmity, is that unsound doctrine, or sound?’ ‘ It is unsound doctrine, Gotama.’

‘ Now if a man hold unsound doctrine, Lohikka, I declare that one of two future births will be his lot, either purgatory or rebirth as an animal.’

11. `Now what think you Lohikka? Is not King Pasenadi of Kosala in possession of Kasi and Kosala?’ ‘ Yes. that is so. Gotama.’

`Then suppose, Lohikka. one were to speak thus : ‘ King Pasenadi of Kosala is in possession of Kasi and Kosala. Let him enjoy all the revenue and all the produce of Kasi and Kosala, allowing nothing to anybody else.” Would the utterer of that speech be a danger-maker as touching the men who live in dependence on King Pasenadi of Kosala both you yourself and others or not ?’ ‘ He would be danger-maker Gotama.’

`And making that danger, would he be a person who sympathised with their welfare, or not?’                                           

He would not be considering their welfare, Gotarna.’ ‘ And not considering their welfare, would his heart stand fast in love toward them, or in enmity ?’ ‘         In enmity, Gotama.”

‘ But when one’s heart stands fast in enmity, is that unsound   doctrine, or sound ? ‘ ‘         ‘ It is unsound doctrine, Gotama.’ ‘         ‘ Now if a man hold unsound doctrine, Lohikka, I declare that one

of two future births will be his lot, either purgatory or rebirth as an animal.

12 and 14. `So then, Lohikka, you admit that he who should say that you, being in occupation of Salavatika, should therefore, yourself enjoy all the revenue and produce thereof, bestowing nothing on any one else; and he who should say that King Pasenadi of Kosala, being in power over Kasi and Kosala, should therefore himself enjoy all the revenue and produce thereof, bestowing nothing on any one else— would be making danger for those living in dependence upon you ; or for those you and others living in dependence upon the King. And that those who thus make danger for others, must be wanting in sympathy for them. And that the man wanting in sympathy has his heart set fast in enmity. And that to have one’s heart set fast in enmity is unsound doctrine.

13 and 15. `Then just so, Lohikka, he who should say : Suppose a Samana or a Brahamana to have reached up to some good state (of mind), then should he tell no one else about it. For what can one man do for another? To tell others would be like the man who, having broken through an old bond, should entangle himself in a new one. Like that, I say, is this desire to declare to others, it is a form of lust ;”—just so he, who should say, thus, would be putting obstacles in the way of those clansmen who, having taken upon themselves the Doctrine and Discipline set forth by Him-who-has-won-the-Truth, have attained to great distinction therein—to the fruit of conversion, for instance, or to the fruit of once returning, or to the fruit of never returning, or even to Arhatship—he would be putting obstacles in the way of those who are bringing to fruition the course of conduct that will lead to rebirth in states of bliss in heaven. But putting obstacles in their way he would be out of sympathy for their welfare ; being out of sympathy for their welfare his heart would become established in enmity ; and when one’s heart is established in enmity, that is unsound doctrine. Now if a man hold unsound doctrine, Lohikka, I declare that one of two future births will be his lot, either purgatory or rebirth as an animal.

16. `There are these three sorts of teachers in the world, Lohikka, who are worthy of blame ; And whosoever should blame such a one, his rebuke would be justified, in accord with the facts and the truth, not improper. What are the three?

`In the first place, Lohikka, there is a sort of teacher who has not himself attained to that aim of Samanaship for the sake of which he left his home and adopted the homeless life. Without having himself attained to it he teaches a doctrine (Dhamma) to his hearers, saying : “ This is good for you, this will make you happy.” Then those hearers of his neither listen to him, nor give ear to his words, nor become steadfast in heart through their knowledge thereof; they go their own way, apart from the teaching of the master. Such a teacher may be rebuked, setting out these facts, and adding : You are like one who should make advances to her who keeps repulsing him, or should embrace her who turns her face away from him. Like that, do I say, is this lust of yours (to go on posing as a teacher of men, no one heeding, since, they trust you not). For what, then, can one man do for another ?”

This, Lohikka, is the first sort of teacher in the world worthy of blame. And whosoever should blame such a one, his rebuke would be justified, in accord with the facts and the truth, not improper.

17. In the second place, Lohikka, there is a sort of teacher who has not himself attained to that aim of Samanship for the sake of which he left his home and adopted the homeless life. Without having himself attained to it he teaches a doctrine to his hearers, saying : “This is good for you ;, that will make you happy.” And to him his disciples listen ; they give ears to his words ; they become steadfast in heart by their understanding what is said ; and they go not their own way, apart from the teaching of the master. Such a teacher may be rebuked, setting out these facts and adding : You are like a man who, neglecting his own field, should take thought to weed out his neighbour’s field. Like that, do I say, is this lust of yours (to go on teaching others when you have not taught yourself). For what, then, can one man do for another?”

This, Lohikka, is the second sort of teacher in the world worthy of blame. And whosoever should blame such a one, his rebuke would be justified, in accord with the facts and the truth not improper.

18. And again, Lohikka, in the third place, there is a sort of teacher who has himself attained to that aim of Samanaship for the sake of which he left his home and adopted the homeless life. Having himself attained it, he teaches the doctrine to his hearers, saying : “ This is good for you, that will make you happy.” But those hearers of his neither listen to him, nor give ear to his words, nor become steadfast in heart through understanding thereof; they go their own way, apart from the teaching of the master. Such a teacher may be rebuked, setting out these facts, and adding; “You are like a man who, having broken through an old bond, should entangle himself in a new one.” Like that, do I say, is this lust of yours (to go on teaching when you have not trained yourself to teach). For what, then, can one man do for another?”

This, Lohikka, is the third sort of teacher in the world worthy of blame. And whosoever should blame such a one, his rebuke would be justified, in accord with the facts and the truth, not improper. And these, Lohikka, are the three sorts of teachers of which I spoke.’

19. And when he had thus spoken, Lohikka, the Brahman spake thus to the Exalted One :

‘ But is there, Gotama, any sort of teacher not worthy of blame in the world ?

‘ Yes, Lohikka, there is a teacher not worthy, in the world of blame.’ ‘ And what sort of a teacher, Gotama, is so ? ‘ (The answer is in the words of the exposition set out above in the Samanna-phala, as follows :

1. The appearance of a Tathagata (one who won the truth), his preaching, the conversion of a hearer, his adoption of the homeless state.

2. The minor details of mere morality that he practises.

3. The Confidence of heart he gains from this practice.

4. The paragraph on `Guarded is the door of his Senses.’

5. The paragraph on ‘ Mindful and Self-possessed.’

6.  The paragraph on Simplicity of Life, being content with little.

7. The paragraphs on Emancipation, ill-temper, laziness, worry and perplexity.

8. The paragraph on the Joy and Peace that, as a result of this emancipation, fills his whole being.

9. The paragraphs on the Four Raptures (Ghanas).

10. The paragraphs on the Insight arising from Knowledge (the

knowledge of the First Path).

11. The paragraphs on the Realisation of the Four Noble Truths the destruction of the Intoxications—lust, delusions, becomings, and ignorance—and the attainment of Arhatship.) The refrain through and the closing paragraph is : ‘And whosoever the teacher be, Lohikka, under whom the disciple attains to distinction so excellent as that, that, Lohikka is a teacher not open to blame in the world. And whosoever should blame such a one, his rebuke would be unjustifiable, not in accord either with the facts or with the truth, without good ground.’

78. And when he had thus spoken, Lohikka the Brahman said to the Exalted One :

`Just, Gotama, as if a man had caught hold of a man, falling over the precipitous edge of purgatory, by the hair of his head and lifted him up safe back on the firm land—just so have I, on the point of falling into purgatory, been lifted back on to the land by the Venerable Gotama. Most excellent, 0 Gotama, are the words of thy mouth, most excellent? Just as if a man were to set up what has been thrown down, or were to reveal what has been hidden away, or were to point out the right road to him who has gone astray, or were to bring a light into the darkness so that those who had eyes could see external forms—just even so has the truth been made known to me, in many a figure, by the Venerable Gotama. And I, even I, betake myself to the Venerable Gotama as my guide, to the Doctrine and to the Order. May the Venerable Gotama accept me as a disciple ; as one who, from this day forth as long as life endures, has taken him as his guide!


Online edition of India’s National Newspaper
Wednesday, Jun 25, 2008

P.G.R. Sindhia ousted from the BSP

K.V. Subramanya

State unit president Marasandra Muniyappa retained 

BANGALORE: Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) General Secretary P.G.R. Sindhia was “removed” from the party on Tuesday on the grounds that he was “not able to work in coordination with old office-bearers of the party”.

The BSP National General Secretary in-charge of Karnataka and Rajya Sabha member Veer Singh announced that he had removed Mr. Sindhia from the party on the instructions of the BSP President and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati.

When contacted, Mr. Sindhia said his removal from the party had come as a “surprise and shock”. He said he was on a pilgrimage at Kukke Subrahamanya with his family and was totally unaware of the developments.

“After returning to Bangalore, I will find out what has gone wrong and at what level,” he said.

Asked whether he would remain in the BSP, Mr. Sindhia told The Hindu that he would decide on it after ascertaining the facts.

According to sources in the BSP, Ms. Mayawati had decided on revamping the State unit of the party in view of its rout in the Assembly elections and also to strengthen the party ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

While selecting the new office-bearers, Mr. Sindhia had reportedly tried to accommodate his supporters by ignoring those who had been with the BSP since its inspection. He had not even cleared the list of office-bearers that was sent to him a fortnight ago, sources told The Hindu.

Besides, the BSP central leadership was “unhappy” that in the Assembly elections, Mr. Sindhia could not garner many votes for the party, particularly in those constituencies where he had a good following. The BSP candidate secured around 2,000 votes and lost his security deposit in the Kanakapura constituency from where Mr. Sindhia was elected to the Assembly for six consecutive terms, the sources said.

Mr. Veer Singh, who has been camping in Bangalore for the past two days, is likely to announce the list of new office-bearers of the State unit on Wednesday.

However, Marasandra Muniyappa, who replaced B. Gopal as the State President a few months ago, will continue in the post, sources said.

Mr. Sindhia officially joined the BSP after the dissolution of the previous Assembly in October, severing his three-decade-old association with the Janata Parivar. His relationship with the Janata Dal (Secular) soured after the party joined hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party to form the government in February 2007.

  

     

Sindhia expelled from BSP

BANGALORE: Slapping charges of anti-party activities, BSP supremo Mayawati on Tuesday expelled her Karnataka-based national general secretary P G R Sindhia, who was six months old in the outfit.

Taking Sindhia by surprise when he was travelling, the expulsion notice was sent across to the media. “They have accused me of being inactive. I don’t know where and what went wrong. I am surprised as I met Mayawati on May 27,” he told TOI.

After a 35-year association with the Janata Parivar, Sindhia quit to join the BSP on December 23, 2007, at a function attended by Mayawati. Admitting him, Mayawati had said his joining brought strength to the party and also named him as one of the four members from the Karnataka unit to coordinate with the central unit. A former minister in all Janata Parivar governments, Sindhia disassociated himself when JD(S) joined hands with BJP to form a government. Later, he was suspended from JD(S) for anti-party acitivities.

According to BSP sources, Sindhia is reported to have encouraged groupism and was building a core group of his loyalists within the party. “The BSP is cadre-based and does not encourage groupism. Besides, Mayawati was unhappy that he had not put his heart and soul in the assembly elections. In Kanakapura, BSP secured a mere 2,000 votes,” they added. It is learnt Sindhia had taken exception to certain appointments made by Mayawati to the state unit, commenting these should have been done in consultation with him. Following the expulsion, the BSP office has shifted to Dollar’s Colony as the existing premises was given to the party by Sindhia.

                                                                                                                                         


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06/24/08
Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Ancient India-CHAPTER 3-A Sunken Priesthood-Continuity and Change in the Economic Ethics of Buddhism: Evidence From the History of Buddhism in India, China and Japan- Buddhism and politics-Scheduled Caste (Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath) women invisible citizens-International Early Birds Brotherhood Multipurpose Cooperative Society(IEBBMCS) For The Welfare and Ultimate Bliss of Entire Mighty Great Minds
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Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Ancient India

CHAPTER
3

A
Sunken Priesthood

This
essay is numbered as Chapter III in the file of the Ancient Regime and contains 16
foolscap-typed pages. This Chapter also seems to be left incomplete.—
Editors.

The
priestly profession in the ancient Aryan Society was monopolised by the Brahmins. None
except a Brahmin could become a priest. As custodians of religion, the Brahmins were the
guides of the people in moral and spiritual matters. They were to set the standard for
people to follow. Did the Brahmins act up to the standard? Unfortunately,
all the evidence we have, shows that the Brahmins had fallen
to the utmost depth of moral degradation.

A
Shrotriya Brahmin was supposed not to keep with him a store
of provision lasting for more than a week. But they had systematically trampled upon this rule and were addicted to the use of the
things stored up ; stores, to wit, of foods, drinks,
clothing, equipages, bedding, perfumes, and curry-stuffs. The Brahmins were addicted to
visiting shows such as :—

(1)
Nautch dances (nakkam).

(2)
Singings of songs (gitam).

(3)
Instrumental music (vaditam).

(4)
Shows at fairs (pekham).

(5)
Ballads recitations (akkhanam).

(6)
Hand music (panisaram).

(7)
The chanting of bards (vetals).

(8)
Tam-tam playing (kumbhathunam).

(9)
Fair scenes (sobhanagarkam).

(10)
Acrobatic feats by Kandalas (Kandala-vamsa-dhopanam).

(11)
Combats of elephants, horses, buffaloes, bulls, goats, rams,

cocks
and quails.

(12)
Bouts at quarter staff, boxing, wrestling. (13-16)
Sham-fights, roll-calls, manoeuvres, reviews.

 

They
were addicted to games and recreations; that is to say,

(1)
Games on boards with eight, or with ten rows of squares.

(2)
The same games played by imagining such boards in the air.

(3)
Keeping going over diagrams drawn on the ground so that one-steps only where one ought to
go.

(4)
Either removing the pieces or men from a help with one’s
nail, or putting them into a heap, in each case without shaking it. He who shakes the
heap, loses.

(5)
Throwing dice.

(6)
Hitting a short stick with a long one.

(7)
Dipping the hand with the fingers stretched out in lac, or red dye, or flour water, and
striking the wet hand on the ground or on a wall, calling out `what shall it be?‘ and showing the form
required—elephants, horses .

(8)
Games with balls.

(9)
Blowing through toy pipes made of leaves.

(10)
Ploughing with toy ploughs.

(11)
Turning summersaults.

(12)
Playing with toy windmills made of palm leaves.

(13)
Playing with toy measures made of palm leaves. (14, 15) Playing with toy carts or toy
bows.

(16)
Guessing at letters traced in the air, or on a playfellow’s back.

(17)
Guessing the playfellow’s thoughts.

(18)
Mimicry of deformities.

 

They
were addicted to the use of high and large couches ; that is
to say:

(1)
Moveable settees, high, and six feet long (Asandi).

(2)
Divans with animal figures carved on the supports (Pallanko).

(3)
Goat’s hair coverings with very long fleece (Gonako).

(4)
Patchwork counterpanes of many colours (Kittaka).

(5)
White blankets (Patika).

(6)
Woollen coverlets embroidered with flowers ( Patalika).

(7)
Quilts stuffed with cotton wool (Tulika).

(8)
Coverlets embroidered with figures of lions, tigers, & c.,
(Vikatika).

(9)
Rugs with fur on both sides (Uddalom).

(10)
Rugs with fur on one side (Ekantalomi).

(11)
Coverlets embroidered with gems (Katthissam).

(12)
Silk coverlets (Koseyyam).

(13)
Carpets large enough for sixteen dancers (Kittakam). (14-16) Elephant, horse and chariot rugs.

(17)
Rugs of antelope skins sewn together (Aginepaveni).

(18)
Rugs of skins of the plantain
  antelope.

(19)
Carpets with awnings above them (Sauttarakkhadam).

(20)
Sofas with red pillows for the head and feet“. The
Brahmins were addicted to the use of means for adorning and beautifying themselves; that
is to say : Rubbing in scented powders on one’s body, shampooing it, and bathing it, patting the limbs with clubs
after the manner of wrestlers, the use of mirrors, eye-ointments, garlands, rouge,
cosmetics, bracelets, necklaces, walking-sticks, reed cases for drugs, rapiers, sunshades,
embroidered slippers, turbans, diadems, whisks of the yak tail and long-fringed white
robes. The Brahmins were addicted to such low conversation as these :

Tales
of kings, of robbers, of ministers of state ; tales of war,
of terrors, of battles ; talk about foods and drinks,
clothes, beds, garlands, perfumes ; talks about
relationships, equipages, villages, towns, cities and countries ;
tales about women, and about heroes ; gossip at street corners, or places whence water is
fetched ; ghost stories ; desultory talk ; speculations
about the creation of the land or sea, or about existence and non-existence. The Brahmins
were addicted to the use of wrangling phrases: such as:

“You
don’t understand this doctrine and discipline, I do.” “How should you know about
this doctrine and discipline?” “You have fallen into wrong views. It is I who am
in the right.” “ I am speaking to the point, you
are not.“You are putting last what ought to come
first, and first what ought to come last.

“What
you’ve ex-cogitated so long, that is all quite upset.”
You are proved to be wrong.” “ Set to work to
clear your views.” “ Disentangle yourself if you
can.

The
Brahmins were addicted to taking messages, going on errands, and acting as go-betweens; to
wit, on kings, ministers of state, Kshatriyas, Brahmans, or young men, saying: Go there, come hither, take this with you, bring that from
there.

The
Brahmins were tricksters, drone out (of holy words for
pray), diviners, and exorcists,
ever hungering to add gain to gain.’
           

The
Brahmins earned their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

(1)
Palmistry—prophesying long life, prosperity, & c.,
(or the reverse from marks on a child’s hands, feet, & c.)
            

(2)
Divining by means of omens and signs.

   (3) Auguries drawn from thunderbolts and
other celestial portents.

(4)
Prognostication by interpreting dreams.

(5)
Fortune-telling from marks on the body.

(6)
Auguries from the marks on cloth gnawed by mice.

(7)
Sacrificing to Agni.

(8)
Offering oblations from a spoon. (9-13) Making offerings to gods of husks, of the red
powder between the grain and the husk, of husked grain ready
for boiling, or ghee and of oil.

(14)
Sacrificing by spewing mustard seeds, & c., into the
fire out

of
one’s mouth.

(15)
Drawing blood from one’s right knee as a sacrifice to the

gods.

(16)
Looking at the knuckles, & c., and, after muttering a
charm, divining whether a man is well born of luck or not.

(17)
Determining whether the site for a proposed house or pleasance,
is luck or not.

(18)
Advising on customary law.

(19)
Laying demons in a cemetery.

(20)
Laying ghosts.

(21)
Knowledge of the charms to be used when lodging in an earth house.

(22)
Snake charming.

(23)
The poison craft.

(24)
The scorpion craft.

(25)
The mouse craft.

(26)
The bird craft.

(27)
The crow craft.

(28)
Foretelling the number of years that man has yet to live.

(29)
Giving charms to ward off arrows.

(30)
The animal wheel.

The
Brahmins earned their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

Knowledge
of the signs of good and bad qualities in the following things and of the marks in them
denoting the health or luck of their owners : to wit, gems,
staves, garments, swords, arrows, bows, other weapons, women, men, boys, girls, slaves,
slave-girls, elephants, horses, buffaloes, bulls, oxen, goats, sheep, fowls, quails, iguanas, herrings, tortoises, and other animals.

The
Brahmins, earned their living by wrong means of livelihood by low arts such as soothe
saying, to the effect that,

The
chiefs will march out.

The
home chiefs will attack and the enemies retreat.

The
enemies’ chiefs will attack, and ours will retreat.

The
home chiefs will gain the victory, and ours will suffer defeat.

The
foreign chiefs will gain the victory on this side, and ours will suffer defeat.

Thus
will there be victory on this side, defeat on that. The Brahmins, while living on food
provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of livelihood, by such low arts
as fore-telling:

(1)
There will be an eclipse of the Moon.

(2)
There will be an eclipse of the Sun.

(3)
There will be an eclipse of a star (Nakshatra).

(4)
There will be aberration of the Sun or the Moon.

(5)
The Sun or the Moon will return to its usual path.

(6)
There will be aberrations of the stars.

(7)
The stars will return to their usual course.

(8)
There will be a jungle fire.

(9)
There will be a fall of meteors.

(10)
There will be an earthquake.

(11)
The god will thunder.

(12-15)
There will be rising and setting, clearness and dimness of the Sun or the Moon or the
stars, or foretelling of each of these fifteen phenomena that they will betoken such and
such a result.

The
Brahmins earned their living by wrong means of the livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

Foretelling
an abundant rainfall.

Foretelling
a deficient rainfall.

Foretelling
a good harvest.

Foretelling
scarcity of food.

Foretelling
tranquillity.
                                                 

Foretelling
disturbances.
                                               

Foretelling
a pestilence.
                                                

Foretelling
a healthy season.

Counting
on the fingers.

Counting
without using the fingers Summing up large totals.

Composing
ballads, poetising.

Casuistry,
sophistry.

The Brahmins, while
living on food provided by the faithful, earn their living by
           
wrong means of livelihood by low arts, such as:

(1)
Arranging a lucky day for marriages in which the bride or
bridegroom is brought home.

(2)
Arranging a lucky day for marriages in which the bride or bridegroom is sent forth.

(3)
Fixing a lucky time for the conclusion of treaties of peace (or using charms to procure
harmony).

(4)
Fixing a lucky time for the outbreak of hostilities (or using charms to make discord).

(5)
Fixing a lucky time for the calling in of debts (or charms for success in throwing dice).

(6)
Fixing a lucky time for the expenditure of money (or charms to bring ill luck to an
opponent throwing dice).

(7)
Using charms to make people lucky.

(8)
Using charms to make people unlucky.

(9)
Using charms to procure abortion.

(10)
Incantations to keep a man’s jaws fixed.

(11)
Incantations to bring on dumbness.

(12)
Incantations to make a man throw up his hands.

(13)
Incantations to bring on deafness.

(14)
Obtaining oracular answers by means of the magic mirror.

(15)
Obtaining oracular answers through a girl possessed.

(16)
Obtaining oracular answers from a god.

(17)
The worship of the Sun.

(18)
The worship of the Great One.

(19)
Bringing forth flames from one’s mouth.

(20)
Invoking Siri, the goddess of Luck. The Brahmins earned
their living by wrong means of livelihood, by low arts, such as these:

(1)
Vowing gifts to a god if a certain benefit be granted.

(2)
Paying such vows.

(3)
Repeating charms while lodging in an earth house.

(4)
Causing virility.

(5)
Making a man impotent.

(6)
Fixing on lucky sites for dwellings.

(7)
Consecrating sites.

(8)
Ceremonial rinsing of the mouth.

(9)
Ceremonial bathing.

(10)
Offering sacrifices.

(11-14)
Administering emetics and purgatives.

 (15) Purging people to relieve the head (that is by
giving drugs to

       
make people sneeze).

(16)
Oiling people’s ears (either to make them grow or to heal

       
sores on them).

(17)
Satisfying people’s eyes (soothing them by dropping
medicinal

       
oils into them).

(18)
Administering drugs through the nose.

(19)
Applying collyrium to the eyes.

(20)
Giving medicinal ointment for the eyes.

(21)
Practising as an oculist.

(22)
Practising as a surgeon.

(23)
Practising as a doctor for children.

(24)
Administering roots and drugs.

(25)
Administering medicines in rotation.

       
(INCOMPLETE)


Continuity and Change in the Economic Ethics of Buddhism:
Evidence From the History of Buddhism in India, China and Japan

Gregory K. Ornatowski

Boston University, ISSN 1076-9005

Introduction


Buddhist economic ethics–that is Buddhist values with regard to wealth
and economic activity, either within society or within the sangha–are
often slighted in Western scholarly studies of Buddhism even though they
play a significant role as a part of overall Buddhist philosophy regarding
social life and even enlightenment itself. This is due perhaps partly to
an implicit interpretation of Buddhism among some scholars as being a religion
focused primarily upon an individualistic pursuit of enlightenment rather
than also a set of practiced social, political, and economic ethics. To
an extent of course this characterization holds true, for at least a part
of both the Theravaada and Mahaayaana traditions. Yet it also ignores clearly
developed Buddhist attitudes and values toward economic activities, some
explicitly expressed in the various Vinaya codes for monks, others less
explicitly, but still clearly enough, in various stories and suutras which
lay out general
principles of behavior for lay believers.

This paper offers an outline of the development of Buddhist economic
ethics using examples from early Theravaada Buddhism in India and the
Mahaayaana tradition as it evolved in India, medieval China, and medieval
and early modern Japan, in order to illustrate the pattern of continuities
and transformations
these ethics have undergone. By “economic ethics” the paper refers to four
broad areas: (1) attitudes toward wealth, i.e., its accumulation, use, and distribution,
including the issues of economic justice and equality/ inequality; (2) attitudes
toward charity, i.e., how and to whom wealth should be given; (3) attitudes
toward human labor and secular occupations in society; and (4)
actual economic activities of temples and monasteries which reflect the lived-practice
of Buddhist communities’ economic ethics. By “Buddhist,” the paper refers to
mainline Buddhist thinking in history, as represented by the various Vinaya
codes, suutras and stories, and economic activities of major sects, monasteries,
and
temples.

Since I will be dealing with a range of “Buddhisms” as they developed
in various times and places, I have relied upon previous scholarly work
to help define what the general trends of the economic ethics of these
various “Buddhisms” were. This approach assumes that there was no one
Buddhist economic ethic for all of these different times and places,
just as there is no one “Buddhism.” Yet through an examination of the
economic ethics of these different “Buddhisms,” certain continuities and differences between
them become clear. Moreover, the presence of these continuities would
seem to allow us to make a number of tentative conclusions about what
the development and nature of these various Buddhist economic ethics
as a whole might share. These
can be summarized as follows:

(1) Buddhist soteriologies affect Buddhist economic ethics in fundamental
ways. By defining how enlightenment is achieved, what enlightenment is
and what has ultimate value, Buddhist soteriologies set the parameters
for what Buddhist economic ethics will be in any particular tradition
or school of Buddhism.

(2) Within these soteriologies, the major Buddhist concepts of karma, anaatman, “suunyataa and pratiitya­samutpaada (dependent
coorigination) each help determine the shape of the Buddhist economic
ethics of any particular school. However, the impact of these conceptions
ultimately is ambiguous and depends to a large extent upon the interpretation
of
them within the particular sociocultural and historical situation.

(3) Contrary to the common image of monk and laity ethics being two
completely separate realms with little commonality, the ideal economic
ethics of monks and laity share a common overall principle (that of nonattachment
to wealth). Yet, they still differ in both specifics (rules regarding
wealth, labor, and the like) and specificity (how explicitly they define
the proper
attitudes and morals regarding wealth, labor, and so on).

(4) The development and evolution of Buddhist economic ethics within
Theravaada and Mahaayaana reveal both lines of continuity between
these traditions (e.g., lay ethics emphasizing sharing of wealth with
others) as well
as clear transformations in ideas (e.g., Zen attitudes toward monk labor).
Transformations usually are traceable to the influence of indigenous thought
or of other historical peculiarities in the way Buddhism was accepted in the
new country where it entered (e.g., China and Japan).

(5) Buddhist economic ethics tend not to be just the reflection of religious
attitudes toward the economy but also religious attitudes toward the
state (polity). This latter relationship (Buddhism and the polity) usually
was characterized by interdependence and reciprocity, that is, state
support for the sangha in return for the sangha’s spiritual protection
and legitimization of the state. The implication of this relationship
for Buddhist economic ethics was that they usually (a) did not challenge
or question the existing economic distribution of wealth but emphasized
instead religious giving to the sangha
(daana) as the ideal social action; and (b) relied upon secular authorities
(the king or state) to help define the specifics of lay Buddhist economic ethics,
along with guidelines given in various suutra. (6) Buddhist economics ethics
for the laity were not inherently antagonistic to the development of capitalism,
but in fact supported a primitive capitalism among the merchant classes in early
Buddhist India, and medieval China and Japan. This could be seen in both merchant-type
lay ethics, which encouraged the accumulation of wealth along with certain restraints
on consumption of this wealth, and direct economic activities by Buddhist monasteries
themselves, which led to innovations in business practices and implicit support
for commercial
tendencies in society as a whole.

(7) Issues of economic equality and distributive justice were dealt
with in Buddhist economic ethics primarily through the ideas of karma,
religious giving
(daana), and compassion (karu.naa) and focused less on changing
the overall existing distribution of wealth than on cultivating the proper ethical
attitudes toward wealth and giving. At the same time, in the occasional use of
Maitreya by revolutionary and other protest movements, there were the beginnings
of the development of a more socially activist and transformative economic ethic
focusing on ideas about economic and political justice.

In the remainder of this paper, I will examine the above themes in more
depth, beginning with evidence from early Theravaada and then moving
on to Mahaayaana in its main forms in India, China, and Japan. Given
the space limitations, only the major trends of both teachings and actual
economic practices will be discussed. Together however, these offer sufficient
evidence to form an overall picture of Buddhist ethics as they evolved
over time, as well as some tentative conclusions about the relationship
between Buddhist economic ethics and such issues as the development of
capitalism and concepts of economic
justice.

Theravaada Buddhist Economic Ethics


The economic ethics of Theravaada Buddhism, especially attitudes toward
wealth, poverty, charity, and labor cannot be understood without understanding
something about Buddhist soteriologies (i.e., theories of how a person
achieves enlightenment). The earliest Buddhist soteriology was summarized
in the Four Noble Truths: (1) suffering exists; (2) the cause of suffering
is craving (attachment); (3) there is a way out of this suffering; and
(4) this way is the Eightfold Path. This Eightfold Path consisted of three
types of activity: (1) moral conduct; (2) mental discipline; and (3) wisdom.
Moral conduct in turn included three of the eight components of the Path:
(a) right conduct; (b) right speech; and (c) right livelihood, each of
which involved various prescriptions for behavior, attitudes, and mental
dispositions.

Early Buddhist soteriologies must also be understood by examining the
major
concepts of karma, anaatman, nirvana/sa.msaara and pratiitya­samutpaada (dependent
coorigination) to see how they helped define such soteriologies. Karma, for example
was understood to apply to all actions including moral ones and implied that
a person’s present situation was the result of past acts, thoughts, and feelings
in this life and previous ones. It also taught that the effects of a person’s
actions carry on beyond the present life into future lives. Therefore, meritorious
acts in the present life will result in rewards in future lives. Karma thus can
be conceived of as a Buddhist basis for justice in the sense that through it
each individual received what he or she deserved in life based upon past actions.
This of course included the economic realm with the implication that one’s economic
position (i.e., wealth) was the result of one’s actions in this or previous lives-with
good ethical actions leading to a better position in terms of wealth and bad
ethical actions leading to a worse position. In this way, karma offered a rational
explanation for social, economic, and political inequalities while also implying
that economic justice already was achieved, i.e., persons economically
have what they deserve, at least to start off. Karma thus contributed to a strong
sense of morality as conditioning one’s existence and to a stress on individual
responsibility rather than social forces as the cause of one’s
present situation.

In addition to karma, the Buddhist concepts of nirvana and sa.msaara
were also central to understanding Buddhist soteriologies and had important
implications for views toward poverty and wealth. In early Theravaada
Buddhism, for example, nirvana and sa.msaara were viewed as far apart-nirvana
being the “unborn” and “unbecome”-and defined in terms of what sa.msaara
was not. The soteriological goal was to escape sa.msaara through escaping
craving, and to do this through practicing the Eightfold Path. Only
when a person had escaped sa.msaara could they attain nirvana, whether
nirvana
was conceived of as an ethical state or also as a metaphysical one.
The implication for early Theravaada Buddhist believers was that to
attain
nirvana right ethical behavior
was a key.1 Another implication was that since sa.msaara had little value,
economic activities (which generally were associated with the realm of sa.msaara)
could never have genuine religious significance.

The concept of pratiitya­samutpaada was a third major concept
that helped determine Buddhist soteriology. It did so by pointing to
the interdependence of all things and actions. In ethical terms, this
implied that although the individual was ultimately responsible for his
own karma, since all sentient beings are connected and since compassion
is a virtue, helping one’s fellow sentient beings also had value, including
help of a material nature. Thus there was a strong moral basis for giving
and not withholding material or
spiritual assistance to others.

Finally, the concept of anaatman implied that since no eternal
unchanging aatman (self) existed, there was no reason to withhold
giving
to others, or to hoard wealth, since there was no “I” that needed to be protected
or defended more than others. Yet, the idea of anaatman also held a potential
paradox. That is, if there was no self, then what individual or personal moral
obligation could exist? Could ethics even be possible if there was no self? The
most common early Theravaada Buddhist answer to this was that whether there was
a self or not, karma continued to exist and wrongful moral actions led to negative
karma while right actions led to positive karma. Thus the nonexistence of self
did not imply that actions and their results, or ethical responsibility, could
not exist.2

The above discussion highlights the correspondence between the key concepts
of Theravaada Buddhism and attitudes toward wealth, poverty, and ethical
action. Based upon this, in the earliest Buddhism most kinds of economic
behavior of monks (e.g., labor, agricultural production, and possession
or accumulation of
wealth outside of one’s robe and begging bowl)3 were proscribed,
and monk economic ethics were mainly negative. With the passage of time, however,
some Vinayas were relaxed. Individual monks were allowed to keep money, and monasteries
were allowed to sell or use for profit goods donated to them, as well as lend
out money and collect interest-as long as the profits went to the benefit of
the Three Treasures, i.e., the sangha, the Buddha, and the Dharma. Economic activities
undertaken by individual monks for personal profit, however, as well as monk
labor (whether it involved agriculture or commercial activities), continued to
be proscribed.4

In contrast to these early monk economic ethics, early economic ethics
for the laity appeared clearly different since they allowed the laity
to hold wealth and even praised the creation of wealth through diligent
work following one’s chosen or given occupation. However, lay economic
ethics also stressed the avoidance of craving or attachment to such wealth
and that it must be shared with the sangha and with family and friends.
In addition, early lay economic ethics praised the value of labor and
devotion to most secular occupations (with
some exceptions).

Such a more lenient attitude toward lay accumulation of wealth and labor
was not simply the result of monks trying to ensure their own material
support from the laity. It was also the result of a clear and consistent
logic in the early Buddhist view of reality that what had ultimate value
for both monk and laity was the individual attainment of enlightenment.
Although best pursued as a monk, such attainment of enlightenment was
also possible for lay people. As a result, economic ethics, whether for
monk or for laity, ultimately were directed toward furthering this goal
of enlightenment. For both, the key to achieving this goal was overcoming
craving. As the laity needed to earn their living, accumulating wealth
was allowed and even encouraged as long as too much craving was avoided.
Since the monks were on a different point in the path toward nirvana
and required stricter discipline, it was considered better for them not
to accumulate or hold wealth at all. This system required that the laity
support the sangha in order to allow individual monks to devote themselves
to their own enlightenment, but also so that they could teach the Dharma
to the laity and give knowledge and understanding which furthered the
process of laity

enlightenment. Through giving to the sangha (daana), the laity earned
merit which would help them receive better karma; by avoiding economic activities
in favor of meditation and teaching, monks spread the Dharma and contributed
to the overall supreme goal of maximum progress toward enlightenment
for all.5

Lay economic ethics taught in early Buddhism thus focused upon three
areas: (1) accumulating wealth through hard work, diligence and setting
certain restrains on one’s own consumption; (2) choosing and pursuing
the right occupation (i.e., avoiding occupations such as killing animals,
trade in weapons, and the like); and (3) sharing wealth honestly acquired
with family, friends and the sangha. Such merchant-type values in early
Buddhist lay ethics contrasted sharply with the economic ethics of
Brahminism, which reflected the
patriarchal clan­based ethics of an agricultural society.6

Support for this influence of merchant-class values upon early Buddhist
lay ethics can be found in early Buddhist suutras and stories which refer
to lay wealth in a way which tends to assume a certain amount of wealth
already being held, and in the strong emphasis upon giving and receiving
rather than the high
value put in Brahmin ethics upon sacrifices.7 The influence
of merchant-class ethics is also apparent in the three main themes of such suutras
and stories: (1) diligence and honesty in acquisition of wealth; (2) restrain
of one’s own consumption in order to accumulate wealth; and (3) reinvestment
of this wealth to produce more wealth, merit and happiness for self
and others.

The best-known early suutra which exhibits these themes was the Singaalovaada
Sutta
or Admonition to Singaala, sometimes referred to as
the Buddhist laymen’s Vinaya. In it an ethic of diligent accumulation
of wealth through hard work, restrained consumption, and reinvestment
of profits
into one’s business is stressed, as in the following passage:

What is particularly interesting about this passage is that it urges that
only a fourth of all one’s wealth should be consumed for daily living while
the other three-fourths should be saved, most of it to be reinvested in
one’s trade. This
reflects a merchant­based mentality which while perhaps not ascetic in the
same sense as the so­called Protestant ethic, does put a strong emphasis
on saving and reinvestment. The suutra goes on to give specific advice on how
to avoid squandering this accumulated wealth by avoiding such things as idleness,
bad friends, addiction to intoxicants, roaming the streets at odd hours, frequenting
shows, and indulging in gambling.9

Other early suutras emphasize strongly the virtue of nonattachment to wealth
as the foundation of all morals in society. This can be seen in both the Cakkavatti­Siihanaada and Kuu.tadanta
Suttas
, in which the generosity of a righteous king for the destitute becomes
the basis for the establishment of virtue and prosperity in lay society. At
the same time, a lack of such generosity was presented as the beginning of
a steady expansion of vice
and evil and a steady decay of society.10 Suutras
such as the Mahaa­Sudassana Sutta, moreover, by stressing the impermanence
of all wealth and worldly possessions, no matter how great their extent, reinforced
the value of nonattachment to wealth.11

With the passage of time, the lay virtue of generosity and giving only became
more and more predominant. This was reflected in the many stories in the suutras
of unbridled generosity leading to good karma and spiritual advancement.12 At the same time, while suutras pointed out the dangers
of wealth in terms of creating craving, poverty was never advocated for the
laity,
but was viewed as a “suffering in the world for a layman.”13

Yet even though giving became the supreme lay virtue, there was a subtle difference
between the earlier suutras, in which giving to both the poor and the
sangha was urged, and later suutras, in which giving to the sangha was the
main theme. In this way daana (giving to the sangha) became the central
concept of lay economic ethics. By giving to the sangha, the individual not
only furthered his own soteriological quest and karma, but benefited society
and contributed to the betterment of others’ karma through supporting the educational
act of spreading the Dharma.14

The concept of daana along with the concept of karma also contribute
to a certain set of ideas about economic justice in Theravaada Buddhist economic
ethics. On the one hand, the notion of karma has been used to argue in favor of
an idea of justice existing in Theravaada Buddhist economic ethics, as
follows:

Such equality before the law of kamma resembles the West’s notion of procedural
justice . . . there is equality of opportunity in the sense that the law of
kamma treats all evenhandedly in rewarding virtue and punishing vice, and the
determining essence of virtue (the attitude of nonattachment) is presumably
an equal possibility for all.15

Economic inequalities existing in society thus can be viewed as the result
of past karmic acts and do not violate a sense of justice but in fact confirm
it.

On the other hand, the concept of karma can also be used to argue against an
idea of justice in Theravaada Buddhism. This is possible through emphasizing
an interpretation of karma which implies that the way to nirvana is through
a slow accumulation of individual merit effected by religious giving and individual
acts of compassion rather than an interest in effecting social justice in the
Western sense of an equitable distribution of wealth:

. . . The law of kamma, with its all encompassing explanation of existing
inequalities, tends to do away with Buddhist perplexity over the plight of
the poor. Buddhist emphasis on the virtue of charity tends to outweigh interest
in justice and so ethical reflection is shifted away from evaluation of the
existing distribution of wealth.16

What both of the above arguments share is a tendency to regard the issue of
economic justice as one involving the need for greater economic equality and
redistribution of wealth from the rich to the poor. This of course is only
one interpretation of justice. If accepted, however, there is little clear
evidence in Theravaada Buddhism supporting redistribution of wealth, except
for the idea
of daana, which implied redistribution of wealth to the sangha and
not necessarily to the poor, and the idea of karu.naa, which implied more
individually-based acts of compassion toward one’s fellow sentient beings rather
than an overall program for social change.

Support for an idea of economic or social equality in the form of an economically
or socially classless society also never seems to have been envisioned in early
Theravaada Buddhism, at least for the laity. Instead, clear differences in
social, economic, and political levels seem to be assumed, a fact reflected
in the lack of a clear prohibition against ownership or use of slaves either
by layman or temple (though slave trading was proscribed).17 In addition while within the early sangha a large degree
of economic and to some degree political equality existed, this equality was
never extended beyond the sangha to a prescription for society as a whole.
Moreover even within the sangha, there was a class structure in the sense of
different levels of spiritual development and seniority which were acknowledged
and
affected how different monks were treated.18 Thus
equality in early Theravaada Buddhism seems to have been primarily a spiritual
ideal viewed in terms of equal potential for all to achieve spiritual
enlightenment. This conclusion is supported by the fact that in contrast to Brahminism,
almost all classes of people could and did enter the early Buddhist order of
monks.19

Early Theravaada Buddhist economic ethics and ideas regarding social and economic
inequality were also strongly affected by various viewpoints of the proper
relationship between the sangha and the state or king. Although the earliest
Buddhism tended to view contact with the king as something to be avoided like
a poisonous snake, and kings were labeled among other disasters that might
occur to a person,20 by the
time of King A”soka and afterward, Buddhism began to develop a close relationship
with the state in most places where it existed, including India and Ceylon,
and later Southeast Asia, China, Japan, and Tibet. This relationship was
based upon the idea of the Cakravartin king,21 or the
ideal enlightened king who carried out the Dharma in society and supported
the sangha, in return for which he received the sangha’s spiritual protection
and
legitimization. The story of King A”soka of course seems to provide a major historical
context for this ideal, and the stone edicts left by his rule point to the close
and mutually beneficial relationship between him and the Buddhist sangha. These
edicts refer to social policies which have been referred to by some scholars
as a type of ancient “welfare state” in that various facilities for the poor,
sick, and indigent were constructed by the state, in addition to state support
for the sangha.22 Yet
a
closer reading of these edicts themselves makes clear that A”soka never intended
to change the fundamental economic and social structure of his society. Instead,
he focused his social activism more upon spreading the Dharma through charitable
works for the poor, sick, and imprisoned, religious giving to the sangha, and
encouraging meditation and proper treatment of one’s father and mother, teacher,
relatives, slaves and servants, priests and ascetics, and animals.23

>From the historical example of A”soka and other instances of sangha/state
cooperation, early Theravaada Buddhism developed and evolved its own concept
of the ideal relationship between sangha and state which, as two recent scholars
have termed it, was a “purposeful political strategy of adjustment and
accommodation” toward the state reflecting a “distinctly Buddhist understanding
of the possibilities for social change” through “gradual reform with emphasis
on
religious education.”24 In other
words, here was established the typically Buddhist amelioratory approach to social
change that would continue to affect both Theravaada and Mahaayaana traditions
later on. In this approach, the role of the enlightened king or state was to
formulate specific laws for society based upon general ideas and principles given
by the Buddha.25 At the
same time, the political role of the sangha was to teach the Dharma to the king
and support the state by obeying the laws of the land (and not challenge the
given economic distribution and social structure). In this way, while ideas about
social and economic justice did seem to exist in early Theravaada Buddhism, they
existed in the form of particular ideas about karma, daana and the state/sangha
relationship which were clearly different than most current Western ideas about
justice. Yet, this should not be surprising since current Western ideas are
themselves a product of a long evolution of concepts, and although related
to their predecessors
in Judeo­Christian ethics and Roman law, are still clearly different from
them.

In conclusion, wealth and labor had value in early Theravaada Buddhist ethics,
but a value ultimately smaller than that given to the pursuit of enlightenment
for the monk and gaining merit through daana for the
laity.26 Wealth was never an evil in itself, either for laity or
monk, but was to be welcomed as the result of past merits, as long as one never
became attached to it. Giving was the way to avoid such attachment and for the
laity such giving increasingly became giving to the sangha (daana), rather
than directly to the poor or reinvesting into one’s secular business. Moreover,
in contrast to the Calvinist with his God of predestination, the Theravaadist
layman never was assured of his salvation, and constantly had to work to earn
it through the creation of additional merit through additional daana.
This led to an emphasis on investment in daana over investment in one’s
secular business, with the ultimate consequence for the Theravaada Buddhist
that his “proof of salvation” was found “not in accumulating and creating new
wealth, but in giving it away in the form of daana.”27 As a result, a type of Protestant asceticism emphasizing
the accumulation of wealth which was then invested into one’s secular business
and (according to Weber) contributed to the development of modern capitalism
in
the West, never was encouraged in the Theravaada tradition once the idea of daana became
dominant. Some scholars go even further and argue that this
very tradition of daana is an important reason for the slower development
of modern capitalism in countries with a strong Theravaada tradition.28 >

Early Indian and Medieval Chinese Mahaayaana Economic
Ethics


Economic ethics in Mahaayaana
Buddhism show both continuities and differences with those in Theravaada
Buddhism. Many of the changes are related to transformations
in Mahaayaana understandings of nirvana/sa.msaara, enlightenment and the bodhisattva
ideal. For example, within Mahaayaana the absolute difference or separation between
nirvana and sa.msaara disappears. As a result, charitable activities within sa.msaara
grow to have more value in themselves and the bodhisattva idea becomes the ideal.
At the same time, a more positive view of sa.msaara tends to lead to an acceptance
of status
quo conditions “in the world,” while the primary focus of efforts toward enlightenment
are put upon epistemic change in one’s perception of things. This focus on enlightenment
as primarily a change in one’s way of perceiving things implied that the main
soteriological effort must be made towards effecting such epistemic change (through
meditation, and the like), rather than Theravaada Buddhism’s focus on change
in individual ethical/moral behavior leading to a
gradual betterment of karma.29

Another implication of these shifts in Mahaayaana versus Theravaada ontology,
epistemology and soteriology was a greater acceptance of economic activity
by the sangha. The most obvious instances of this were the increased economic
activities of the Buddhist monasteries in China and Japan and the acceptance
of
monk labor in the Ch’an/ Zen school. At the same time, in terms of lay economic
ethics, values toward wealth continued to remain focused upon religious giving
(daana), and accumulation and possession of wealth was “good” as long
as one remained nonattached to it. In terms of the Buddhist sangha’s relationship
with the state, the previous pattern of cooperation and an amelioratory approach
to social change, along with support for the status quo distribution of wealth,
remained the governing paradigms.

An excellent example of both these continuities as well as differences with
Theravaada ethics can be found in the Indian Mahaayaana work by Naagaarjuna
called the Jewel Garland of Royal Counsels. In this work Naagaarjuna
presents counsel to his friend and disciple, King Udayi, about the ideal Buddhist
state. In such a state the enlightened king begins with his understanding of
the truth of anaatman and based upon this understanding acts benevolently
and without “self” to carry out compassionate measures for the sick, elderly,
farmers, children, mendicants and beggars, based upon the karmic premise
that such giving of wealth will produce more prosperity and wealth for the
kingdom
in the future. He also cooperates with the sangha to spread the
Dharma.30 In this way Naagaarjuna takes up the themes of karma, anaatman, compassionate
giving and sangha/state cooperation and puts them into an overall viewpoint of
how Mahaayaana economic and social ethics should be carried out by the benevolent
king. In the process, he also presents both the continuities and differences
between Mahaayaana economic ethics and those of Theravaada: the continuities
consisting of a common stress on sangha/state cooperation and similar ideas about
karma, anaatman, and the importance of giving; the differences being a
much greater stress on the importance of the initial epistemic change in an individual’s
thinking as the key to all later
benevolent actions.

In China, Mahaayaana economic ethics continued along similar lines of sangha/
state cooperation. However, the development of Mahaayaana Buddhist economic
ethics in China must also must be understood in terms of Buddhism’s entry into
China as a foreign religion and its efforts to accommodate itself to an already
existing Confucian heritage. This accommodation began with Buddhism’s introduction
in the first centuries of the Common Era and ultimately resulted in a Chinese
transformation of Buddhism which left Chinese Mahaayaana Buddhist ethics much
more Confucian and less Indian than they had been previously, although still
clearly recognizable as Mahaayaana Buddhist. Specifically, what this meant
was a greater emphasis on filial piety-the cornerstone of Confucian ethics-as
well as on the values of social harmony and hierarchical social relationships
between ruler and subject, husband and wife, teacher and student, and so on.
This Confucian influence was seen most strongly during the beginning of the
introduction of Buddhism into China, in the translations of Indian suutras
during the Later Han (25-220 C.E.) and Eastern Chin (317-420 C.E.) periods,
but continued even after Buddhism was established and accepted in the more
cosmopolitan atmosphere of the Sui (581-618) and T’ang (618-907) periods.31 As a result, filial piety, although not unknown in earlier
Buddhism and already praised as a virtue there, came to be much more emphasized
in the Chinese environment. For the Chinese Buddhist laity, this fit in well
with social expectations for behavior. For the monk, it presented a huge challenge
in terms of justifying such seemingly unfilial behavior as following the traditional
Buddhist ideal of leaving home and joining the sangha, in the process cutting
ties and obligations to parents.32

Buddhism’s position in China and the need for accommodation also led to a
greater emphasis upon those strands of earlier Buddhist ethics (for monk and
laity) referring to gratitude and loyalty, especially to family and sovereign.33 The ideal of harmony, so strong in Confucianism, was adopted
by Chinese Buddhists and applied to all social relationships, as well as
becoming the cornerstone of some Chinese Buddhist metaphysical systems, such
as the
Hua­Yen school established in the seventh century. In this way, both
Chinese Buddhist ethics and metaphysics were subtly transformed in the process
of assimilation
and accommodation to indigenous Confucian ideas, and as a result diverged
somewhat from their Indian Mahaayaana predecessors.

Along with such divergencies, however, there were also large areas of continuity
between Chinese Mahaayaana and earlier Indian Mahaayaana (and Theravaada) lay
and monastic social ethics. For example, giving to the sangha
(daana) remained the most virtuous and merit­making activity for
the laity. Also economic ethics for the monk in the form of Vinaya rules governing
economic matters generally were the same as in Indian Mahaayaana. Moreover,
for
both monk and laity karu.naa (compassion) as an individual virtue continued
to be an extremely important.

Yet in each of these areas and in the area of practiced economic ethics
in particular, Chinese Buddhist economic ethics took on new forms. These new
forms could be seen most clearly in various commercial activities of Chinese
temples which had not existed in Indian Mahaayaana, such as grain milling,
oil seed pressing, money lending, pawnshops, loans of grain to peasants (with
interest), mutual financing associations, hotels and hostelries, and rental
of temple lands to farmers in exchange for some percentage of the crop. In
other areas, Chinese temples carried over previously existing Indian Mahaayaana
commercial practices such as loans (with interest) against pledges, auction
sales of clothing and fabrics, use of lay servants within the monastery to
carry out commercial transactions on behalf of the sangha, and allowing goods
donated to the sangha which were not used by the monks to be sold or loaned
out to earn profits for the sangha. Even in these practices which were carryovers
from India, however, new forms developed in China as monks came to be allowed
to handle gold and silver and carry out commercial transactions including usury
on an individual basis. In most cases such transformations were less a result
of
changes in the Indian Vinaya than a disregarding of it in practice in China.34

Of all the commercial activities of the Chinese monasteries usury in one form
or another was clearly one of the most profitable. Part of such usury was
from loans to peasants in the form of grain at the beginning of the farming
season,
with repayment of principal along with a 50 percent interest due at the harvest.
Other loans with interest went out in the form of cash to members of the
upper classes, soldiers and others, except in the case of those with whom the
monastery
had a close relationship (based upon lay giving), to whom loans could
be interest­free. Loans were also made to temple serfs attached to the monastery,
to whom interest was not charged due to the risk­free nature of such transactions
since serfs were bound to the temple lands anyway. Due to misuses of usury
(not only by monasteries but by other lenders) leading to hardships for peasants,
the government during the T’ang period (618-907 C.E.) put limits on interest
rates at 4 to 5 percent per month. Both private moneylenders and the temples
however often went beyond these limits.35

As time passed such usury was not only undertaken by the monastery itself
but by individual monks and became a major activity of many of them. Monasteries
apparently condoned such individual usury because even though it led to the
development of wealthy individual monks, these monks tended to practice religious
giving to the monastery, and after their death their assets usually were inherited
by the monastery.36 In this
way individual monk usury was justified in terms of its ultimate benefit to
the
sangha.

As a result of such usury activities, as well as generous donations from wealthy
clans and the Imperial family from the fifth to the seventh centuries in
particular,37 Buddhist monasteries in medieval China became extremely
wealthy and the number of monasteries and monks increased considerably. Such
wealth resulted in turn in monasteries coming to wield a significant amount of
political power as well.

>From the state’s point of view, however, all of this brought about a considerable
loss of tax revenue due to the tax­free status of monastic lands, and
a considerable loss of corvee labor brought about by the huge increase in
monks
(exempted from such labor), many of whom were former peasants. In addition,
there was an increasingly lavish consumption of wealth occurring in Buddhist
festivals and feasts and construction of temples, stupas, family mortuaries,
and statues. Urged on by Confucians and Taoists who decried these trends
as leading to the impoverishment of the empire, the state engaged in periodic
persecutions of Buddhism by forced laicization of monks, seizure of monastery
wealth (especially gold, silver, and copper) and placing limits on the number
of monasteries and temples. Major persecutions of this type occurred in the
years 446, 574, and 845. In each case the main goal was to shore up the finances
of the empire by forcibly returning monks to peasant life (some of whom had
taken up the tonsure to avoid taxes and corvee labor), converting some temple
lands to taxable status, and melting down some of the enormous numbers of
gold,
silver and copper Buddhist statues, the making of which had led to extreme
shortages of these materials available for coinage of money by the empire.38

Another reason behind some of the persecutions was the occasional political
involvement of monasteries in rebellions or intrigues against the state.
This occurred even though “official” Buddhism in the form of state­sponsored
temples and monasteries tended to support the state unequivocally. Smaller
regional temples and those tied to local great families, however, occasionally
got involved in political movements against the state and thus provided a
very different example of Buddhist/state relations than the traditional cooperative
sangha/state ideal.39 Also,
the occurrence of rebellions during the Sui, T’ang and later periods tied to
worshipers of Maitreya, the future Buddha, illustrated how particular Buddhist
sects or movements using Buddhist symbols for their own purposes could adopt
adversarial relationships with the state and use advocacy of greater economic
equality (or at least relief from onerous taxed) as part of their appeal for
rebellion against state authority.40

The establishment of so­called inexhaustible treasuries and merit-cloisters
in Buddhist monasteries were perhaps the best examples of “capitalist” innovations
in China originating from Buddhist practices. The practice of inexhaustible
treasuries was introduced from Indian Mahaayaana Buddhism and began in China
during the Liang Dynasty (502-557 C.E.). They consisted of permanent assets
of monasteries in the form of land, money or goods (such as an oil press
or flour mill) which were loaned out in exchange for a steady (and inexhaustible)
supply of income. These permanent assets usually entered the monastery in
the
form of donations, either small or large, which were then pooled and put
into the inexhaustible treasury. Although never used on more than a small
scale
in India, in China such inexhaustible treasuries became major commercial
operations for monasteries with the income from them used for the support
of the monasteries
and monks, temple festivals, construction of new temples and various charitable
purposes. Some of the income also was used to acquire additional capital
in the form of land or more flour mills or oil presses. In this way, an initial
amount of capital in the form of permanent assets of the monastery was used
to produce profits which were then partly consumed and partly reinvested
into
new assets in order to produce additional profits and a larger business.
It was this type of productive use of capital to produce more capital on
the part
of Chinese Buddhist monasteries that led French scholar Jacques Gernet to
conclude that the Chinese Buddhist sangha was responsible for the introduction
of capitalist
practices in China.41

It is not entirely clear however whether it was the sangha who took the lead
here or whether they were only acting “no differently from the nobility and
the
rich and powerful families of the empire.”42 It also
can be argued that these practices were not pure capitalism in the modern sense
in that the gifts to the monasteries which provided the initial capital were
given not with the idea of producing wealth in a capitalist sense but with the
intention that such gifts would produce good karma for the donor. Garnet himself,
for example, points to the religious nature of the inexhaustible treasuries and
the fact that inexhaustible referred not only to an endless stream of income
but to an endless cycle of giving and receiving in a Buddhist
sense of daana and return of compassion to others.43 On the
other hand, it can also be argued that whatever the original intention of the
donations were, their actual use by the monasteries as common assets communally
managed to produce income to be reinvested in the “corporation” of the sangha,
supports the contention that such practices did indeed introduce a type
of “communal capitalism” into China that had not existed previously.

The practice of the merit-cloister in the T’ang (618-907) and Sung (960-1126)
periods was another example of a Buddhist practice which had commercial overtones.
It offers evidence that donations to the monasteries were not only made for
religious reasons, but sometimes were used by the wealthy as a form of “tax
shelter.” This was because the merit cloister offered the rich and powerful
a means to donate land to a monastery and thus avoid taxes on it, while still
keeping effective control over it by maintaining the right to appoint and
dismiss the monks who acted as supervisors over the land.44

The buying and selling of monk ordination certificates was also a commercial
practice which had a broad influence upon the Buddhist sangha in China. Begun
originally in the fifth century by the government as a means to raise money
for the state, it was later adopted by Buddhist monasteries themselves as a
way to raise money. Over time such certificates came to be traded in the marketplace,
with their value tied to the perceived economic gain accruing to the holder
in terms of tax and corvee labor exemptions and opportunities to engage in
usury.45

In addition to the above monastic practices which all involved the accumulation
and use of wealth, there also occurred innovations in Chinese Buddhist monastic
attitudes and practices toward the value of monk labor, specifically in the
Ch’an school, that had not existed in India. This is because until Chinese
Ch’an, there was a clear prohibition against monk manual or productive labor-not
only in commercial activities but in agriculture or even gardening or watering
of plants.

The person who initiated these innovations was the eighth-century Ch’an monk
Pai­chang Huai­hai. Huai­hai justified monk manual labor over against
the clear prohibitions against it in the Vinayas by arguing in a Buddhist way
that if the intention behind the deed and not the deed itself was most important,
then monk labor was justified as long as it was for the benefit of the Three
Treasures. This justification and the practice of monk labor in many Zen monasteries
led to the famous saying in the Ch’an (and later Zen)
schools, “one day no work, one day no food.” Huai­hai used the term p’u­ch’ing meaning
collective participation to refer to monk labor,
with the idea that this implied “all monks in the sangha would work together
on
a basis of equality to achieve a common goal.”46

However, there is circumstantial evidence that this Ch’an innovation toward
monk labor also was driven at least partly by increasing criticism of the “parasitic” lives
of Buddhist monks and the increasing wealth of the monasteries which occurred
prior to this Ch’an innovation in the eighth century. Such criticism began
as early as the fifth century and by the ninth century was an important factor
in the massive Buddhist persecution of 845 under Emperor Wu. Due in part to
the relative economic self­sufficiency of Ch’an monasteries, supported
by monk labor, Ch’an was much better able to survive these persecutions than
the older more established schools which were heavily dependent upon wealthy
outside patrons.47 The
lasting significance of Ch’an attitudes toward monk labor lay in the religious
meaning Ch’an found in such labor. This meaning sprang from the selfless character
of such work and the experience of nonduality which combining such physical
labor and meditation in the meditation hall represented. As one Ch’an text
explains:

. . . In these instances of collective participation (p’u­ch’ing),
all should exert equal effort regardless of whether the task is important or
unimportant. No one should sit quietly and so contrary to the wishes of the
multitude. . . Rather, one should concentrate his mind on the Tao, and perform
whatever is required by the multitude. After the task is completed, then one
should return to the meditation hall and remain silent as before. One should
transcend the two aspects of activity and nonactivity. Thus though one has
worked all day, he has not worked at all.48

Performing manual labor in the right manner in this way became a religious
act in itself in its expression of the nonduality of worldly labor and Buddhist
meditation and thus ultimately sa.msaara and nirvana.

Ch’an emphasis on monk labor also could be viewed as a reflection of Chinese
indigenous ways of thinking about labor and the work ethic. That is, in China
the idea that all able bodied adults should perform productive work was a
strong part of general social ethics, while in India there was a greater acceptance
of
nonproductive activities focused on “world renunciation” as being of the higher
value than ordinary human labor. Such a difference in the value put on human
worldly labor also ultimately reflected the corresponding difference between
Indian and Chinese Mahaayaana views of the value of this world itself (sa.msaara),
with Chinese Mahaayaana tending to attribute more inherent value to worldly
activities than Indian Mahaayaana.49 In this
way Ch’an views toward monk labor were on the one hand the result of a combination
of Buddhist and indigenous Chinese ways of thinking about labor, and on the other
hand, an adaptation to the particular historical circumstances Chinese Buddhism
found itself in during the eighth to ninth centuries, which included increasing
public criticism of nonproductive monks.

In summary then, medieval Chinese Mahaayaana Buddhism exhibited both clear
continuities and discontinuities with earlier Theravaada and Indian Mahaayaana
economic ethics in terms of attitudes and practices toward wealth and monk
labor. Yet, it was the differences perhaps which constituted the more historically
important trends. The reasons for such differences undoubtedly sprang from
a multitude of factors, but three in particular can be pointed out here as
especially significant:

(1) A competition in giving to the monasteries on the part of the Imperial
family and aristocracy, especially between the fifth and seventh centuries,
led to massive transfers of wealth to the monasteries and in turn to a broad
introduction of lay commercial ethics and practices into the sangha.

(2) The favored economic status of monasteries and monks in medieval China
(in terms of taxes, corvee labor, and opportunities to produce wealth), along
with the fact that as time passed the Chinese monkhood increasingly was drawn
from the peasantry, combined to produce a monastic order which included many
former peasants who viewed the monkhood in terms of its economic advantages
as much as a place to pursue spiritual aims. Given the tremendous economic
advantages becoming a monk brought with it and given the life of a peasant
at this time, burdened as it was by heavy taxes and corvee labor, this situation
was understandable. The sale of ordination certificates of course only encouraged
this view of the monkhood as a place to reap wealth.

(3) The general character of Chinese ethical life that Buddhism encountered,
dominated as it was by a this-worldly Confucian philosophy that placed great
stress on happiness and prosperity in “this world,” also contributed to the
development of more commercially­minded monks and monasteries. These
three factors then seem to offer a coherent explanation why medieval Chinese
Buddhism
developed more commercially oriented and this-worldly economic ethics, ethics
clearly reflected in the commercial activities of its monasteries and monks
during the fifth to twelfth centuries.

Major Trends in Japanese Buddhist Economic Ethics


The development of economic ethics in Japanese Buddhism can be seen as a continuation
of tendencies begun in Chinese Buddhism in many ways. In Japan, however, rather
than Confucianism as the main indigenous influence on Buddhist ethical thought,
there were both Confucian and Shinto influences on Buddhist ethical thought in
Japan. The Confucian influence derived partly from the historical fact that Buddhism
was introduced to Japan from Korea and China (rather than directly from India)
and as a result the first Buddhist texts in Japan were all early Chinese texts
which reflected Confucianism in their
translation from Sanskrit.50 The
Shinto influence on the other hand derived mainly from Japanese Buddhism’s need
to accommodate itself to indigenous religious thinking, and was reflected in
such doctrines as the equating of Buddhist bodhisattva with Shinto kami
(honji suijaku), and the practice of the placement of Buddhist temples
and shrines in close proximity and an accompanying philosophy of Shin­Butsu
Shugo
or “Shinto­Buddhism Synthesis.” Shinto thinking was also incorporated
by the inclusion of Shinto world­affirming tendencies, evidenced in the predominance
given the idea of hongaku shiso or original enlightenment in Japanese
Buddhism. In this way, Japanese Buddhist ethics from the beginning were a particular
mixture of Mahaayaana Buddhist metaphysics, Confucian social and political ethics
and indigenous Shinto world­affirming
tendencies.

What this meant for Japanese Buddhist ethics was that they have tended to
focus on social harmony (kokyo wago) and the concept of hoon,
or the need for an endless return of benefits from the individual to parents,
ruler, sentient beings and the Three Treasures. Social harmony of course was
the
central concept of Confucian social ethics.51 Hoon,
or the idea of return of benefits from individual to parents and ruler, moreover,
corresponds to the Confucian virtues of filial piety and
loyalty to the sovereign.52 Thus
it was only with the last two relationships, those between individual and all
sentient beings and individual and the Three Treasures that more specifically
Buddhist values became apparent.

Such a mixture of Buddhist and Confucian ideas in Japanese Buddhist social
ethics was clear in the Seventeen Article Constitution (604 C.E.) of
Prince Shotoku Taishi, the devout Buddhist nephew of Empress Suiko and a member
of the Soga clan. The Soga clan, of course, was mainly responsible for introducing
Buddhism into Japan over the objections of other rival clans who argued that
Buddhism would offend the local kami. Apart from any pietistic reasons, the
Soga clan introduced Buddhism because of its identification with higher Chinese
culture and in order to bolster their claims to Imperial power.
The Seventeen Article Constitution itself skillfully blended Confucian
ethical ideas with state support for Buddhism. Thus in this early state patronage
for Buddhism and its mixture with Confucian social ethics, the pattern was set
for much of the later institutional and ethical development of Buddhism
in Japan.

The pattern of state patronage of Buddhism can be seen especially in the history
of Zen, one of the two largest schools of Buddhism in Japan over the past
seven hundred years (along with Pure Land). The founders of the two main Zen
schools
in the twelfth century, Eisai (Rinzai School) and Dogen (Soto School), both
viewed the laws of the state as corresponding to the rules of the monastery,
and identified the proper relationship between state and sangha as
one in which “Zen tradition and its magical formulae provide security for the
state while the state protects and patronizes Zen.”53 Both
also made use of this idea that Buddhism can protect the state in their efforts
to secure state patronage and support for their schools. Such efforts were successful,
especially in the case of Eisai’s Rinzai school, which came to be heavily patronized
by Japan’s military rulers from the thirteenth through the sixteenth centuries.
Rinzai Zen masters following Eisai such as Muso Soseki (1275-1351) and others
continued his tradition of close cooperation with the ruling authorities by playing
the roles of teachers and advisors to the Shoguns and major feudal lords, acting
as diplomats in international relations and even helping to quell unruly elements
among the populace from time to time.54

Zen’s close relationship with Confucian ethics, on the other hand, can be
seen in the way Zen monks were responsible for introducing Sung
neo­Confucianism into Japan in the thirteenth century and establishing the
first schools to teach it to the warrior class. As a result, Zen temples until
the seventeenth century dominated the teaching of Confucianism in Japan until
independent neo­Confucian schools finally were set up during the Tokugawa
period (1600-1868). Zen support for Confucian social ethics seems to have been
based upon the usefulness of Confucian ethics as an ethical teaching for Zen’s
primary sponsors, the samurai. Moreover, even after the new Confucian schools
in the Tokugawa period became increasingly critical of Zen and other Buddhist
schools and wrested control over Confucian studies away from the Zen temples,
Zen temples continued to teach Confucian ethics to the common people in the
so­called terakoya (temple schools), while Zen masters continued to
advocate Confucian social ethics in their writings. In this way, Zen has often
tied its own social ethics to those of Confucianism throughout its history.55

Of course in these patterns of both close cooperation with the state and adoption
of Confucian social ethics, Zen Buddhism was only following an earlier pattern
established in Chinese Buddhism. Thus it should not be surprising that in terms
of its economic ethics, Japanese Buddhism as a whole generally followed the
Chinese pattern and allowed monasteries to engage in such economic activities
as land ownership and rental of land for interest income, money lending, pawnshops,
sponsorship of guilds and local markets, and even leadership of trade missions
to China, all of which were allowed on the doctrinal basis that income from
them was to be used for the Three Treasures. Individual monks were also eventually
allowed to acquire personal wealth, as fourteenth to fifteenth century Zen
temple records show. One type of wealthy monk in
particular, the shosu or estate overseers, were able to receive as personal
income anywhere from 1 to 10 percent of the total income from the lands they
oversaw.56

The Chinese pattern was also followed in the trend toward the accumulation
of wealth and power by Japanese Buddhist temples leading to various criticisms
of such wealth and power and periodic government efforts to control their growth,
beginning as early as the seventh century. In Japan, however, government repression
resulted in a fewer number of major persecutions than in China. The major ones
were generally restricted to the years 1570-1590 under the warlords Oda Nobunaga
and Hideyoshi Toyotomi (their purpose being to break the military and economic
power of the temples),57 and
those of the 1860s to1870s as a part of Meiji government policy to forcibly
separate Shinto and Buddhism and establish the superiority of the Shinto.58 In Japan also, up until the late sixteenth century the state
periodically shifted its support from one Buddhist school to another as earlier
schools were judged to have become too powerful, too corrupt, or too connected
to previous regimes. The ability of Buddhist temples to prosper in spite
of this and gain increasing wealth is shown by the fact that by the
mid­sixteenth century prior to Oda Nobunaga’s major persecutions, all Buddhist
temples as a whole controlled as much as 25 percent of the cultivated land
in the country, as well as holding extensive political control in many
local areas.59

In terms of lay economic ethics in pre­modern Japanese Buddhist
history, the formal teachings of the major schools generally stressed the importance
of observing the laws of the land, and equated (as with Eisai and Dogen), the
observance of secular law with the observance of Buddhist religious laws or
precepts. This was especially true of Zen, but also of the Pure Land schools
and the older Shingon, Tendai (T’ien T’ai) and Kegon (Hua­Yen)
sects.60 At the same time, beginning in the Tokugawa period, Zen
and Pure Land schools increasingly emphasized ascetic merchant-type lay economic
ethics centered on the values of frugality, diligence and the religious significance
of productive labor. For example, in Banmin Tokuyo or The Significance
of Everyman’s Activities
, Suzuki Shosan (1579-1655), a Zen monk during the
early Tokugawa period, expressed the religious value behind ordinary labor as
follows:

Every profession is a Buddhist exercise. You should attain Buddha through
your work. . . . Farming is nothing but a Buddhist exercise. If our intention
is bad, farming is a lowly work; but if you are deeply religious, it is the
saintly work of a Bodhisattva. . . Do hard work in the heat and in the cold;
regard as an enemy your own flesh overgrown with evil passions; turn up the
soil and reap in the harvest. . . Those engaged in trade should first of all
learn how to make as much profit as possible. . . Regard your trade as a gift
of Heaven. Leave yourself at the mercy of Heaven, cease to worry about gain,
and be honest in
business.61

In a similar way, Pure Land Buddhist lay ethics, specifically in the Jodo
Shin sect in the Tokugawa period, moved away from their earlier reliance
on pure faith alone and toward ethical action linked to faith. This ethical
action
consisted mainly of diligent work in one’s occupation, along with an ascetic
attitude toward consumption. Jodo schools also justified merchant
profit­making through the doctrine of jiri­rita or “profiting
both self and other.” For the Jodo Shin believer, devotion to one’s work or
occupation thus became an important means to aid his salvation.62

The Confucian strain in Japanese Buddhist social ethics, however, could make
for an antimerchant tendency in some teachings, as in Tokugawa Zen master Takuan
Soho’s criticism of merchants for their greed and lack of kindness.63 This was not surprising since in traditional Confucian social
ethics, the merchant was not highly evaluated and the economy itself was
seen as a zero­sum game where profits for the merchant implied a loss for others.
Takuan’s criticism, however, can also be viewed more as a criticism of the
misuse of profits or an improper way to accumulate them (through greed rather
than honest hard work) rather than as a criticism of profit­making
itself.

The Buddhist concepts of anaatman and original enlightenment
(hongaku shiso) also contributed important doctrinal aspects to Japanese
Buddhist social teachings and lay ethics in both the late medieval (1185-1600)
and early modern (1600-1868) periods. anaatman or muga in Japanese
tended to be equated by Zen Buddhists with absolute loyalty to one’s lord,
offering another example of the amalgamation of Confucian ethics into Japanese
Buddhism.
Such a tendency was widespread in Japanese Buddhism throughout late medieval
and early modern periods, but especially so in Zen, due to its close connections
to the warrior class and the state. Zen advocacy of “loyalty to
one’s lord” has also continued to exist even into the modern period as many
Zen temples were able to identify anaatman (or muga) with loyalty
to the Emperor before and during World War II, and to identify it implicitly
if
not
directly with diligence and loyalty to the company in the post­war period
in
Zen meditation sessions held for Japanese company employee training programs.64

The concept of original enlightenment (hongaku shiso), on the other
hand, was used in Japanese Buddhism to refer to the idea that all sentient
beings already are originally enlightened and only need to get rid of their
delusion or ignorance in order to return to their original state. Although
this would seem to imply the basis for the equality of all humans, in Japan
it came to be used to affirm the world as it is and was used by at least
some Japanese Buddhists to explain and justify the status quo order of society,
including
existing social and economic inequalities. Thus the idea of “discrimination is
equality” (shabetsu soku byodo) or the “nonduality of all things” was
employed in the Meiji period by many Buddhists to justify the growing social
and
economic inequalities brought about by the rise of capitalism.65

Japanese Buddhist attitudes toward lay economic labor have traditionally relied
upon the concept of hoon or return of benefits and viewed labor as
an expression of one’s gratitude for benefits received from one’s master
or employer.
This was especially true in the pre­modern period (before 1868) when emphasis
was clearly placed on the individual’s strong obligations to their social nexus,
including their employer or master. With the development of Japanese capitalism
in the modern period (1868-present), however, the majority of Japanese Buddhist
temples continued to lean on this view of labor as return of benefits as the
basis for their view of labor­management relations. As a result most temples
were not that sympathetic to the labor movement when it began to develop in
the early twentieth century, and were not at all sympathetic to Japanese socialism,
which they labeled “bad equality.”66 Teachings
for the Buddhist laity also generally continued to urge support for state
economic and political policies, which focused on the national goal of
achieving a “rich country, strong army.”

Japanese Buddhist temples during the Meiji period (1868-1912) in particular
were supportive of government modernization policies because they wished
to find
favor with the government following the government­backed persecutions of
Buddhism in the 1860s and 1870s. These persecutions had been aimed at abolishing
Buddhist­Shinto syncretism and establishing Shinto, along with the Emperor
system, as the center of Japanese ethical and religious values.67 As a
result, most Buddhist temples hoped to protect themselves and their own positions
from further criticism by working hard to curry favor with the state.

The enthusiastic response of Buddhist temples to the Imperial Rescript on
Education (1890) and the Boshin Rescript (1908) reflected this strategy of
accommodation to government led “economic modernization.” These rescripts were
used by the government as a part of its program of moral education to foster
public support for state policies and goals. By enthusiastically supporting
these rescripts then Buddhist temples were in effect supporting
government­led economic modernization efforts. The same strategy of accommodation
could be seen in many Buddhist writings on socialism and the labor movement at
this time, problems to which the solution was seen as pursuing a
policy of “mutual assistance between the rich and poor,” based upon the ideal
that “managers should be paternal; [and] workers should ‘return the benefits’
received from their bosses and work out of ‘gratitude’.”68 Poverty
thus was viewed as a moral problem and a result of bad karma rather than the
result of economic factors or institutional problems. It is perhaps not surprising
then that Buddhist temple charity at this time was often done in the name of
benefiting the state.69

In conclusion, Buddhism’s role in Japan’s modern economic development and
the rise of modern capitalism in prewar Japan was a mixture of both positive
and passive support. Such support was positive in the sense that Buddhist
temples generally supported the values of diligence and hard work, honest
profit­making, a view of labor as “returning benefits” and obedience to state
policies of economic modernization. At the same time, Buddhism’s role was only
passively supportive in the sense that Buddhist believers and temples themselves
did not lead Japan’s modern economic transformation or even encourage its beginning.
Instead they initially were noncommittal to government modernization policies
and only later became more ardent supporters after the persecution of Buddhism
in the 1860s and 1870s. Thus, while there was a clear Buddhist role in the development
of such ascetic-merchant values as diligence,
hard work, and honest profit­making during the period preceding Japan’s
modernization and these values were certainly supportive of Japan’s modernization
once it got
started, it was neither Buddhist merchants nor Buddhist values which directly
led Japan’s modernization. Instead it was young patriotic samurai and their
ethical values based upon an intense nationalism or patriotism expressed toward
the person
of the Emperor and the nation itself.70 Moreover, even ascetic-merchant values themselves, as helpful
as they were, were less the result of Buddhist lay economic ethics alone than
a combination of Buddhist ideas with Confucian thought and values.71 In this way, it was more the values of “Japanese religion” rather
than “Japanese Buddhism” alone which provided the ethic of hard work, loyalty
to the state and subservient labor which helped enable the successful implementation
of modernization policies initiated by a central government dominated by samurai
values of loyalty to Emperor and state.

Conclusions


This paper has given evidence for both the continuity of Buddhist attitudes
toward wealth and labor, as well as the transformations in these attitudes
which occurred as the result of the interaction of Indian Buddhist values and
indigenous Chinese or Japanese ways of thinking. Continuities are most evident
on the lay side of Buddhist teachings in all three countries and in the
general trend toward acceptance of lay wealth (and economic inequalities), encouragement
of wealth accumulation (as long as by honest means and without attachment to
such wealth) and the importance put on giving away such wealth to support the
sangha and as a way to demonstrate lack of attachment to it. Transformations,
on the other hand, are shown most vividly in the changes in monastic Vinaya rules
and actual monistic practices over time. Compared to the original extremely restrictive
rules which prohibited almost any type of economic activity for either monk or
monastery, more relaxed regulations eventually developed as time passed, first
in India and later in various schools in China and Japan. Nowhere was this trend
more obvious than in the development of usury and the accumulation of individual
wealth by individual monks. Although such activities were never universal and
varied with historical time period, they still show the greater degree of transformation
that occurred in monk economic ethics compared to lay ethics for the three countries
reviewed.

Such changes in practiced monastic economic ethics reflect the influence of
indigenous ways of thinking upon the development of Buddhist ethics in China
and Japan. Buddhist ethics and practices themselves also influenced indigenous
ways of thinking in China and Japan, in particular in terms of the idea of
giving to
the sangha (daana) as a type of spiritual “investment” or
merit­making. Whether such giving by any individual was ultimately more for
religious or economic reasons, it contributed to the development of more advanced
forms of communal investment in countries where it was practiced, in particular
in the form of “inexhaustible treasuries,” and other innovative commercial practices
such as merit cloisters and pledge­based usury.

In the final analysis, however, Buddhist economic activities and economic
values never seemed to play a direct role in the development of a more modern type
of capitalism in any of the three countries examined (including Japan). This
is partly due to the inherently conservative and amelioratory tendencies in
Buddhist theories of political and social change and to the strong emphasis
on giving to the sangha (daana) as the best “investment” an individual
could make for their future. In this way it was not an absence of rationalizing
tendencies (in Weberian terms) in Buddhism which led to an inability to contribute
to the rise of a modern form of capitalism in Asia but an absence of an activist
and independent role vis-à-vis secular authorities and institutions, while
at the same time supporting consumption of surplus
capital in daana rather than lay investment of this capital in secular
businesses. At the same time, this conclusion does not intend to downplay the
political realities which existed in India, China and Japan which made such a
more activist and independent economic and political role by Buddhist temples
or
lay society difficult.72

Thus, while on the one hand Buddhism’s role in the economic development of
these three countries was to encourage lay accumulation of wealth and productive
labor, on the other hand, official doctrine seldom varied in ultimately viewing
such lay wealth and labor as less important (except perhaps in Zen and later
Pure Land) than activities directly related to monk enlightenment or lay
merit­making through daana. As a result, while Buddhist lay ethics
may have helped provide the necessary type of lay values for the development
of modernization and modern capitalism (in Japan for example), these ethics were
not sufficient factors in themselves to propel such
development.73 Moreover,
while Buddhist believers and institutions were not the initiators of the political,
social and economic changes which led to economic modernization in Japan in
particular, this does not eliminate a certain Buddhist “flavor” to the strong
work ethic and almost religious view of work which has supported the development
of modernization
and modern capitalism in Japan.

In terms of issues of economic equality and distributive justice on the other
hand, Buddhist teachings were generally less interested in changing the current
distribution of wealth than in cultivating the proper attitudes toward wealth,
which were defined as those of giving and nonattachment. This position relied
upon a karmic interpretation of social and economic inequalities which served
to justify them (and therefore view them as a type of economic justice). Such
a position also served as a rationale for a cooperative attitude toward the
ruling authorities and for upholding the social, political and economic status
quo. Of course, this was the dominant tradition in the form of the teachings
of the majority of Buddhist schools. A minority tradition also existed (in
particular in China) of movements which called for political upheaval based
upon an
interpretation of teachings concerning Maitreya, the future Buddha.

The above view of social and economic inequality is also in accord with a
view of karma which sees intervention in the economic organization of society
as only tending to produce more potential karma and entanglement in sa.msaara.
While such a view leaves open the opportunity for the exercise of compassion
(including material help to others), it avoids more interventionist efforts
to control and redirect existing wealth distribution. When applied to contemporary
economic policies, this appears to lead to a more laissez­faire or politically
conservative approach to issues of wealth distribution rather than a “liberal” or “socialist” approach
of redistributing wealth based on some definition of economic justice. Whether
such a laissez­faire approach or a more socially interventionist approach
represents the true application of Buddhist principles, however, will continue
to remain open to debate, due partly to the very ambiguity of Buddhist concepts
themselves. As a result the evidence for assuming that Buddhist economic ethics
imply political policies of a
socialist “welfare state,” as done by some recent Buddhist scholars, remains
far
from being unambiguously clear.74

Notes


[1] For a
good discussion of this see
George Rupp, “The Relationship Between Nirvana and Samsara: An Essay in the Evolution
of Buddhist Ethics,” Philosophy East and West 21 (1971):
55-58. Return

[2] See Louis Gomez, “Emptiness and Moral Perfection,” Philosophy
East and West
23 (1973): 361-73. Return

[3] The basic prohibitions can be listed as follows: No
contact with money nor causing someone else to have contact, no engaging in
agriculture nor causing someone else to engage in agriculture, and no keeping
of
food or clothing over a certain amount. See Nakamura Hajime, Genshi Bukkyo
no
Shakai Shiso
(Social Though in Primitive Buddhism). Selected Works
of Nakamura Hajime
, vol. 18 (Tokyo: Shunjusha, 1993), 130-33. Return

[4] Ibid., 133-35. There is still much controversy over
when this “laxity” in the Vinaya began and due to what reasons. One traditional
explanation attributes it to the Mahaasa.mghika/Sthavira schism and Mahaasa.mghika
laxity. However, this view has been brought into question in a now classic
article by Janice Nattier and Charles Prebish: “Mahaasa.mghika Origins: The
Beginnings of Buddhist Sectarianism,” History of Religions 16/3 (1977):
237-72. Return

[5] See Russell Sizemore and Donald Swearer, “Introduction,” in Ethics,
Wealth and Salvation: A Study in Buddhist Social
Ethics
, ed. Russell Sizemore and Donald Swearer (Columbia: University of
South Carolina Press, 1990), 13-14. Return

[6] Nakamura, Genshi Bukkyo, 141-49; 160-61. See
also Balkrishna Gokhale, “Early Buddhism and the Urban Revolution,” Journal
of the International Association of Buddhist Studies
5/2 (1982): 18-20. Return

[7] Nakamura, Genshi Bukkyo, 150-161; 224. A good
example of this contrast between Buddhist and Brahmin ethics can be seen in
the Kuu.tadanta Sutta. Return

[8] Diigha Nikaaya, pt. III of Dialogues of the
Buddha
, trans. T.W. and C.A.F Rhys David (London: Luzac and Co. Ltd.,
1971),
180 ff. I use here the translation of Peter Pardue in Buddhism: A Historical
Introduction to Buddhist Values and the Social and Political Forms They Have
Assumed in Asia
(New York: MacMillan Co., 1971). Return

[9] See Phra Rajavaramuni, “Foundations of Buddhist Social
Ethics,” in Ethics, Wealth and Salvation, 35-43; and Pardue, 28-29. Return

[10] See Diigha Nikaaya, pt. II, 59-76; and the Kutandanta
Sutta
, pt. I in Dialogues of the Buddha, 173-85. Return

[11] See pt. II in Dialogues of the Buddha,
199-232. Return

[12] Nakamura, Genshi Bukkyo, 161-76. Return

[13] Sizemore and Swearer, Ethics, Wealth and
Salvation
, 35; 40. Return

[14] Nakamura, Genshi Bukkyo, 215-18; 244-45; and
Sizemore and Swearer, 13-14. Return

[15] Sizemore and Swearer, 21. Return

[16] Ibid., 58. Return

[17] Pardue, 28. For discussion on early Indian monastic
ownership of such “slaves” or servants, see also Gregory Schopen, “The Monastic
Ownership of Servants or Slaves: Local and Legal Factors in the Redactional
History of Two Vinayas,” Journal of the International Association of Buddhist
Studies
17 (1994): 145-73. Return

[18] See Gunapala Dharmasiri, Fundamentals of Buddhist
Ethics
(Antioch: Golden Leaves Publishing Co., 1989), 62-66; and A.
Thmas Kirsch, “Economy, Polity and Religion,” in Change and Persistence in Thai
Society
, ed. G. William Skinner and A. Thomas Kirsch (Ithaca: Cornell
University Press, 1975), 180-82. Return

[19] Dharmasiri, Fundamentals of Buddhist Ethics,
62. The story of the Brahmin youth Assalayana is an apparent example of the
Buddha’s view of the inherent spiritual equality of all persons. See Nakamura
Hajime, Buddhism in Comparative Light (Delhi: Motilala Banarsidass,
1986), 103-4. Return

[20] Nakamura, Buddhism in Comparative Light, 94. Return

[21] See the Cakkavatti­Siihanaada Sutta for
an
early exposition of this idea in Buddhism (Diigha Nikaaya, pt. III, 59-76).
The Cakravartin king idea was not limited to Buddhism but also has a long history
in Hinduism. Return

[22] Robert Thurman, “Edicts of A”soka,” in The Path
of
Compassion: Writings on Socially Engaged Buddhism
, ed. Fred Eppsteiner (Berkeley:
Parallax Press, 1988), 116-17. Return

[23] The Edicts of A”soka, trans. N. A. Nikam and
Richard McKeon (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1959). See especially
pages 40-41 for an idea of A”soka’s concept of “Dharma” and 43-65 for examples
of specific applications of this concept of Dharma. Return

[24] Sizemore and Swearer, 9. Return

[25] Rajavaramuni, “Foundations of Buddhist Social
Ethics,” 9. Return

[26] Nakamura, Genshi Bukkyo, 227; and Rajavaramuni,
45. Return

[27] Melford Spiro, Buddhism and Society (New York:
Harper and Row, 1970), 460; and David Little, “Ethical Analysis and Wealth
in
Theravada Buddhism: A Response to Frank Reynolds,” in Ethics, Wealth and
Salvation
, 84. Return

[28] For an interesting discussion on how such different
ideas toward daana and use of wealth seemingly contributed to contrasting
patterns of economic development in Thailand and Japan, see Eliezer Ayal, “Value
Systems and Economic Development in Japan and Thailand,” in Man, State,
and
Society in Contemporary Southeast Asia
, ed. Robert Tilman (New York: Praeger,
1969). Return

[29] Rupp, “The Relationship Between Nirvana and Samsara,” 59-63. Return

[30] Robert Thurman, “Naagaarjuna’s Guidelines for Buddhist
Social Activism,” in The Path of Compassion, 131-39. Return

[31] See Nakamura Hajime, “The Influence of Confucian Ethics
Upon Chinese Translations of Buddhist Sutras,” Sino­Indian
Studies
5 (1957): 156-70; and Kenneth Chen, The Chinese Transformation
of
Buddhism
(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1973). Return

[32] For a discussion of how Chinese Buddhism dealt with
this problem, see Kenneth Chen, Buddhism in China (Princeton: Princeton
University Press, 1964), 50-57. Return

[33] Nakamura, “The Influence of Confucian Ethics,” 163-68. Return

[34] See Chen, The Chinese Transformation of
Buddhism
, 76; 135-78. See also Jacques Gernet, Buddhism in Chinese Society:
An Economic History From the Fifth to the Tenth Centuries
, trans. Franciscus
Verellen (New York: Columbia University Press, 1995), 70; and Martin
Collcutt, Five Mountains: The Rinzai Zen Monastic Institution in Medieval
Japan
(Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1981), 249-50. Return

[35] Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism,
110; 161. Return

[36] Gernet, 92. Return

[37] A “competition” in aristocratic giving to Buddhist
monasteries occurred during this time, with rich families vying with each
other to show their piety and gain merit. See Gernet, 278-97.
A “competition” in aristocratic giving to Buddhist monasteries occurred during
this time, with rich families vying with each other to show their piety and
gain merit. See Gernet,
278-97. Return

[38] Ibid., 21. Return

[39] Gernet, for example, gives a list of “Buddhist” inspired
rebellions (page 288) as well as evidence to show that Chinese Buddhism in
the period under discussion (400-1000 C.E.) often was strongly promoted by
elements of the aristocracy less committed to Confucian values and more interested
in acquisition of private wealth and political power (278-97). Return

[40] See Arthur Wright, Buddhism in Chinese History (Stanford:
Stanford University Press, 1959), 69; and Joseph Kitagawa, “The Many Faces
of Maitreya,” in Maitreya, The Future Buddha, ed. Alan Sponberg and
Helen Hardacre (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988), 17-18. For more
details on particular rebellions and their use of the theme of economic inequality
between rich and poor, see Daniel Overmeyer, Folk Buddhist Religion: Dissenting
Sects in late Traditional China
. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press,
1976), 120-23. Return

[41] Gernet, 227-28, and Chen, The Chinese Transformation
of Buddhism
, 178. Return

[42] Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism,
178. Return

[43] Gernet, 214. Return

[44] Not all monasteries’ properties had tax­free status
so this only was possible for those which did. See Gernet, 47;141. Return

[45] Ibid., 58-60. Return

[46] Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism,
148-49. Return

[47] See Collcutt, 250; and Heinrich Dumoulin, A History
of Zen Buddhism: India and China
(New York: Pantheon Books, 1963),
243. Not only Zen, but Pure Land’s survival also seems to have been due
at least
partly to economic reasons, that is to its base of support coming from
the masses. In contrast, the Hua-Yen, T’ien T’ai and Fa-Hsiang patrons,
including
the Imperial family, and their connection with the “parasitic” practices
mentioned above help to explain their decline. See Collcutt, Five
Mountains
; and Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism. Return

[48] Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism,
150.Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism, 150. Return

[49] Ibid., 151. Return

[50] See Nakamura, “The Influence of Confucian Ethics.” Return

[51] See Dert Bode, “Harmony and Conflict in Chinese
Philosophy,” in Studies in Chinese Thought, ed. Arthur Wright (Chicago:
University of Chicago Press, 1953), 45-47. Return

[52] Christopher Ives, Zen Awakening and Society (Honolulu:
University of Hawaii Press, 1992), 93; and Winston Davis, Japanese Religion
and Society
(Albany: State University of New York Press, 1992),
157. Return

[53] Ives, Zen Awakening, 56. Return

[54] Collcutt, 57-61. Also see Collcutt for more discussion
of the Gozan or Five Mountain system of Rinzai Zen temples established at this
time through government patronage. Return

[55] Ibid., 60-64; and Ives, 64-65. Return

[56] Collcutt, 253-80. Return

[57] For more details, see Neil McMullin, Buddhism and
the State in Sixteenth Century Japan
(Princeton: Princeton University
Press,
1984). Return

[58] See James E. Ketelaar, Of Heretics and Martyrs
in
Meiji Japan: Buddhism and Its Persecution
(Princeton: Princeton University
Press, 1990). Return

[59] See McMullin, Buddhism and the State in Sixteenth
Century Japan
, 251. Return

[60] Heinrich Dumoulin, Buddhism in the Modern
World
(New York: MacMillan, 1976), 228. Return

[61] Nakamura Hajime, “Suzuki Shosan, 1579-1655 and the
Spirit of Japanese Capitalism in Japanese Buddhism,” Monumenta Nipponica 22
(1967): 6-8. Return

[62] See Dumoulin, Buddhism in the Modern World,
228; and Robert Bellah, Tokugawa Religion (Glencoe: Free Press, 1970),
118-19. Bellah, however, seems to assume that the Jodo Shin attitude toward
profits was an innovation in Buddhism, when actually a similar attitude had
existed already in early Indian Buddhism, as has been pointed out by Nakamura
Hajime in Genshi Bukkyo no Shakai Shiso (Social Thought in Primitive
Buddhism
). See Selected Works of Nakamura Hajime, vol. 18 (Tokyo:
Shunjusha, 1993), 141-61; and Balkrishna Gokahale, “Early Buddhism and the
Urban
Revolution” Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies 5/2
(1982): 18-20. Return

[63] Ives, 62. Return

[64] See Daizen Victoria, “Japanese Corporate Zen,” Bulletin
of Concerned Asian Scholars
12 (1984): 61-68. Return

[65] See Paul Swanson, “‘Zen is not Buddhism’: Recent Japanese
Critiques of Buddha­nature,” Numen 40 (1993): 115-21; and
Davis, Japanese Religion and Society, 157-58. Return

[66] Ibid., 158-75. Return

[67] For details, see Ketelaar, especially 43-86. Return

[68] Davis, 172-76. Return

[69] Ibid., 176-78. Return

[70] Ibid., 133; 153-88. Return

[71] For example see Bellah on the thought of Shingaku
in Tokugawa Religion, 142-43. Return

[72] Space here does not allow a more detailed discussion
of the nature of these political conditions in each of the three countries.
Suffice it to say that in China and Japan in particular, the political situation
Buddhism faced for most of its history there made a strong independent role
both economically and politically difficult. For more detailed discussions
see Chen, The Chinese Transformation of Buddhism. Return

[73] Nakamura makes a similar argument for religious ethics
in the West in their relation to the development of capitalism. See
Nakamura, Genshi Bukkyo, 261. Return

[74] For two examples of such an assumption, see Thurman, “Naagaarjuna’s
Guidelines,” and Wapola Rahula, “The Social Teachings of the
Buddha,” both in The Path of Compassion. Return


Let me share the thoughts of our late Chief, Venerable K. Sri Dhammananda Maha Thera on
Buddhism and Politics - Venerable here reproduced below:


The
Buddha once said, ‘When the ruler of a country is just and good, the
ministers become just and good; when the ministers are just and good,
the higher officials become just and good; when the higher officials
are just and good, the rank and file become just and good; when the
rank and file become just and good, the people become just and
good.’(Anguttara Nikaya)


In
the Cakkavatti Sihananda Sutta, the Buddha said that immorality and
crime, such as theft, falsehood, violence, hatred, cruelty, could arise
from poverty. Kings and governments may try to suppress crime through
punishment, but it is futile to eradicate crimes through force.


In
the Kutadanta Sutta, the Buddha suggested economic development instead
of force to reduce crime. The government should use the country’s
resources to improve the economic conditions of the country. It could
embark on agricultural and rural development, provide financial support
to entrepreneurs and business, provide adequate wages for workers to
maintain a decent life with human dignity.


In
the Jataka, the Buddha had given to rules for Good Government, known as
‘Dasa Raja Dharma’. These ten rules can be applied even today by any
government which wishes to rule the country peacefully. The rules are
as follows:


1) be liberal and avoid selfishness,
2) maintain a high moral character,
3) be prepared to sacrifice one’s own pleasure for the well-being of the subjects,
4) be honest and maintain absolute integrity,
5) be kind and gentle,
6) lead a simple life for the subjects to emulate,
7) be free from hatred of any kind,
8) exercise non-violence,
9) practise patience, and
10) respect public opinion to promote peace and harmony.

Regarding the behavior of rulers, He further advised:

-
A good ruler should act impartially and should not be biased and
discriminate between one particular group of subjects against another.

- A good ruler should not harbor any form of hatred against any of his subjects.
- A good ruler should show no fear whatsoever in the enforcement of the law, if it is justifiable.
-
A good ruler must possess a clear understanding of the law to be
enforced. It should not be enforced just because the ruler has the
authority to enforce the law. It must be done in a reasonable manner
and with common sense. — (Cakkavatti Sihananda Sutta)


In
the Milinda Panha,it is stated: ‘If a man, who is unfit, incompetent,
immoral, improper, unable and unworthy of kingship, has enthroned
himself a king or a ruler with great authority, he is subject to be
tortured‚ to be subject to a variety of punishment by the people,
because, being unfit and unworthy, he has placed himself unrighteously
in the seat of sovereignty. The ruler, like others who violate and
transgress moral codes and basic rules of all social laws of mankind,
is equally subject to punishment; and moreover, to be censured is the
ruler who conducts himself as a robber of the public.’ In a Jataka
story, it is mentioned that a ruler who punishes innocent people and
does not punish the culprit is not suitable to rule a country.


The
king always improves himself and carefully examines his own conduct in
deeds, words and thoughts, trying to discover and listen to public
opinion as to whether or not he had been guilty of any faults and
mistakes in ruling the kingdom. If it is found that he rules
unrighteously, the public will complain that they are ruined by the
wicked ruler with unjust treatment, punishment, taxation, or other
oppressions including corruption of any kind, and they will react
against him in one way or another. On the contrary, if he rules
righteously they will bless him: ‘Long live His Majesty.’ (Majjhima
Nikaya)


The
Buddha’semphasis on the moral duty of a ruler to use public power to
improve the welfare of the people had inspired Emperor Asoka in the
Third Century B.C. to do likewise. Emperor Asoka, a sparkling example
of this principle, resolved to live according to and preach the Dhamma
and to serve his subjects and all humanity. He declared his
non-aggressive intentions to his neighbors, assuring them of his
goodwill and sending envoys to distant kings bearing his message of
peace and non-aggression. He promoted the energetic practice of the
socio-moral virtues of honesty, truthfulness, compassion, benevolence,
non-violence, considerate behavior towards all, non-extravagance,
non-acquisitiveness, and non-injury to animals. He encouraged religious
freedom and mutual respect for each other’s creed. He went on periodic
tours preaching the Dhamma to the rural people. He undertook works of
public utility, such as founding of hospitals for men and animals,
supplying of medicine, planting of roadside trees and groves, digging
of wells, and construction of watering sheds and rest houses. He
expressly forbade cruelty to animals.

Other interesting and important read:
Ken Jones on Buddhist Social Action, the work of Sulak Sivaraksa, and the many engaged Buddhists here, here and here (and much more) about who have taken Buddhism beyond the temple walls to effect change in communities.

Did you Know? 

Phosphoric acid, a major ingredient in soda pop, has been shown to interfere with your body’s ability to use calcium.  This may lead to softening of teeth and bones and osteoporosis.


We eat or drink unhealthy food
because of lack of minerals and other elements that are in minority. By
eating various food and therefore having enought minerals in the body,
the organisem isn’t “hungry” no more for artificial drinks. You’re
organism starts to reorganize and finds substitutes for unhealthy food.
I know, that now, after knowing the functions of minerals and eating
them enought with food, I drink only water and eat only un-artificial
food, because my body has no lust for candyes, coke and excetra,
anymore. Mind and body functions are better than ever.

 

Aspartam is not the only to blame. Drinking lemon and mineral water
isn’t for people with sensitive stomachs and also isn’t  healthy if you
drink too much mineral water.  You have to mix it with pure water.


Online edition of India’s National Newspaper
Tuesday, Jun 24, 2008
Scheduled Caste (Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath) women invisible citizens: Report

Special Correspondent


Reveals prevalence of untouchability

Recommends a redress mechanism


JAIPUR: A fact-finding mission’s report on the status of Scheduled Caste (Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath) women
in Rajasthan released here on Monday has brought to light the critical
denial of rights to them on the basis of caste as well as gender. Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath
women were found having very little access to livelihood, food, water,
sanitation and the government’s welfare programmes.

As untouchables and outcastes,  Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women invariably face
caste-based discrimination. As women, they face gender discrimination,
and as poor, they face class discrimination, affirmed the report
prepared by two leading Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath and women’s rights groups.

The Centre for Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath Rights and the Programme on Women’s
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (PWESCR) conducted field surveys
in five localities inhabited by Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath in Jaipur and Dausa districts to
assess “exclusion and subordination” of Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women. “Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women are
restricted to the bottom of the society, impoverished and invisible as
citizens,” noted the report.

Releasing the report here in the presence of Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharathactivists,
academicians and community leaders, State Assembly Speaker Sumitra
Singh admitted that “systematic denial” of right to education,
training, land and livelihood resources during the 60 years of
Independence had led to exclusion of Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women from all
socio-economic and political fields. Ms. Singh called upon the Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath
groups to exert pressure on government functionaries to provide health
care, nutrition and other basic services in the Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath-dominated areas.
“Access to education will surely enable Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women to assert their
rights and improve their living conditions,” she said.

The 39-page report said all Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath communities in the State were
suffering from the practice of untouchability and deliberate
segregation. The fact-finding teams visiting the five areas found that Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath  lived in ghetto-like structures within the segregated areas away
from the general population.

 There was a complete lack of
information about the State programmes and schemes and entitlements for Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath under them. With  men and women being unable to access
these sources, the government functionaries had a sense of complacency
and no concern for accountability.

The Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath habitations covered by the field surveys were the Jhalana
Doongri Kachchi Basti, Jaipur; Bagarion Ki Dhani, Pachala; Kadwa Ka
Bas, Dudu (all in Jaipur district) and Raigar Mohalla, Gudalia; and
Raigar Basti, Dausa city (both in Dausa district).

 Only occupations available and
traditionally allocated to Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women were those that no one else
would prefer to do. “The fact-finding clearly demonstrates that in
spite of various laws and schemes for Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath, not much is being done on
the ground to address the day-to-day hardships faced by  Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women”.

The report demanded that the State government develop a monitoring
system to recognise the discrimination faced by dailt women in all
walks of life. There should also be a redress mechanism to deal with
the complaints of violation of rights and dalit women should be made
aware of their legal rights.

The report also underlined the need to bring about “radical changes”
in the mind-set of people who see nothing wrong in the customary
practices of social exclusion of  Original Inhabitants of Jambudvipa,that is the Great Prabuddha Bharath women. It said the government
should ensure that children had access to education without being
discriminated.


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(IEBBMCS)

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Aims & Objects

To
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wealth to benefit all sections of the society.

Distribution of fertile land to all poor farmers with healthy seeds.

Loan
to each and every person who is interested in starting his own business
with proper training on latest and most modern successful Trade
Practices

To train Government servants to serve the society in a most efficient manner without corruption.

To train members to become leaders for excellent governance.

To train all members on “The Art of Giving” for a happy longevity, beauty, prosperity and Authority.

To
create a database of all members with their photos, address, age, and
all other necessary information that will serve as Citizens Identity
Cards.

To help all members to be in the voters list in order to acquire the Master KeyTo strive hard to convert the existing three member Chief Election Commission

as
Chief Election Committee, just like any other Parliamentary Committee
representing all sections of the society to ensure that all eligible
voters in the Country are included in the Voters list with their photo
identity for free and fair elections.

To help all members to get genuine Caste Certificates.

To train all members to become media to propagate peace within oneself and harmony with others.

To
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more money for the wholesome desire of propagating the Practicing and
the Noble
 Right path shown by the Blessed, Noble and the Awakened One.

To train and cultivate the habit of early birds

To practice and train on the essential movements of the body, including walking, cycling and swimming for fitness

To practice and train to buy essential qualitative and most economic household articles and commodities

To train to cultivate the best food habits

To train to cultivate the ten disciplines for happy and peaceful life

Through the practice of Noble Eightfold Path

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Thank You

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06/22/08
Revolution and Counter-Revolution in Ancient India. -CHAPTER 2-The Ancient Regime : The State of the Aryan Society-The Propagation of Buddhism: Unity for Peace-Economics in Buddhism-Beyond Buddhism -to engage and make buddhism more engaging-Malaysia Votes 2008: Buddhists Must Vote and vote wisely -International Early Birds Brotherhood Multipurpose Cooperative Society(IEBBMCS) For The Welfare and Ultimate Bliss of Entire Mighty Great Minds-Citing price rise,Maya pulls out of UPA coalition -LOOKING FOR INDIA’S OBAMA IN HARVARD!
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CHAPTER 2

The Ancient Regime : The State of the Aryan Society

This essay consists of II typed foolscap pages tagged into a file. From the last sentence it appears that the Chapter is incomplete. —Editors

Buddhism was a revolution. It was as great a Revolution as the French Revolution. Though it began as a Religious revolution, it became more than Religious revolution. It became a Social and Political Revolution. To be able to realise how profound was the character of this Revolution, it is necessary to know the state of the society before the revolution began its course. To use the language of the French Revolution, it is necessary to have a picture of the ancient regime in India.

To understand the great reform, which he brought about by his teaching, it is necessary to have some idea of the degraded condition of the Aryan civilisation at the time when Buddha started on the mission of his life.

The Aryan Community of his time was steeped in the worst kind of debauchery; social, religious and spiritual.

To mention only a few of the social evils, attention may be drawn to gambling. Gambling had become as widespread among the Aryans as drinking.

Every king had a hall of gambling attached to his palace. Every king had an expert gambler in his employment as a companion to play with. King Virat had in his employment Kank as an expert gambler. Gambling was not merely a pastime with kings. They played with heavy stakes. They staked kingdoms, dependants, relatives, slaves, servants.*[f1] 

King Nala staked everything in gambling with Paskkar and lost everything. The only thing he did not stake was himself and his wife Damayanti. Nala had to go and live in the forest as a beggar. There were kings who went beyond Nala. The Mahabharat[f2]  tells how Dharma the eldest of the Pandavas gambled and staked everything, his brothers and also his and their wife Draupadi. Gambling was a matter of honour with the Aryans and any invitation to gamble was regarded as an injury to one’s honour and dignity. Dharma gambled with such disastrous consequences although he was warned beforehand. His excuse was that he was invited to gamble and that as a man of honour, he could not decline such an invitation.

This vice of gambling was not confined to kings. It had infected even the common folk. Rig-Veda contains lamentations of a poor Aryan ruined by gambling. The habit of gambling had become so common in Kautilya’s time that there were gambling houses licensed by the king from which the king derived considerable revenue.

Drinking was another evil which was rampant among the Aryans. Liquors were of two sorts Soma and Sura. Soma was a sacrificial wine. The drinking of the Soma was in the beginning permitted only to Brahmins, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas. Subsequently it was permitted only to Brahmins and Kshatriyas. The Vaishyas were excluded from it and the Shudras were never permitted to taste it. Its manufacture was a secret known only to the Brahmins. Sura was open to all and was drunk by all. The Brahmins also drank Sura. Shukracharya the priest to the Asuras drank so heavily that in his drunken state he gave the life giving Mantra known to him only and with which he used to revive the Asuras killed by the Devas—to Katch the son of Brahaspati who was the priest of the Devas. The Mahabharat mentions an occasion when both Krishna and Arjuna were dead drunk. That shows that the best among the Aryan Society were not only not free from the drink habit but that they drank heavily. The most shameful part of it was that even the Aryan women were addicted to drink. For instance Sudeshna[f3]  the wife of King Virat tells her maid Sairandhri to go to Kichaka’s palace and bring Sura as she was dying to have a drink. It is not to be supposed that only queens indulged in drinking. The habit of drinking was common among women of all classes and even Brahmin women were not free from it. That liquor and dancing was indulged in by the Aryan women is clear from the Kausitaki Grihya Sutra 1. 11-12, which says ; Four or eight women who are not widowed, after having been regaled with wine and food are to dance for four times on the night previous to the wedding ceremony.

That the drinking of intoxicating liquor was indulged in by Brahmin women, not to speak of women of the lower Varnas, as late as the seventh and eighth centuries A.D. in the Central region of Aryavarta, is clear from Kumarila Bhatta’s Tantra-Vartika I (iii). 4, which states, Among the people of modern days we find the Brahmin women of the countries of Ahicchatra and Mathura to be addicted to drinking“. Kumarila condemned the practice in the case of Brahmins only, but not of Kshatriyas and Vaishyas men and women, if the liquor was distilled from fruits or flowers (Madhavi), and Molasses (Gaudi) and not from grains (Sura).