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10/30/07
The Blessed,Noble,Awakened One-The Tathagata-Insight Knowledge-5. Bhikkhuni-samyutta — Nuns-Sister Alavika
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The Blessed,Noble,Awakened One-The Tathagata

Insight Knowledge

“With his mind thus concentrated, purified, & bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, & attained to imperturbability, he directs and inclines it to knowledge & vision. He discerns: ‘This body of mine is endowed with form, composed of the four primary elements, born from mother & father, nourished with rice & porridge, subject to inconstancy, rubbing, pressing, dissolution, & dispersion. And this consciousness of mine is supported here and bound up here.’ Just as if there were a beautiful beryl gem of the purest water — eight faceted, well polished, clear, limpid, consummate in all its aspects, and going through the middle of it was a blue, yellow, red, white, or brown thread — and a man with good eyesight, taking it in his hand, were to reflect on it thus: ‘This is a beautiful beryl gem of the purest water, eight faceted, well polished, clear, limpid, consummate in all its aspects. And this, going through the middle of it, is a blue, yellow, red, white, or brown thread.’ In the same way — with his mind thus concentrated, purified, & bright, unblemished, free from defects, pliant, malleable, steady, & attained to imperturbability — the true Follower of The Path Shown by The Blessed,Noble,Awakened One-The Tathagata directs & inclines it to knowledge & vision. He discerns: ‘This body of mine is endowed with form, composed of the four primary elements, born from mother & father, nourished with rice & porridge, subject to inconstancy, rubbing, pressing, dissolution, & dispersion. And this consciousness of mine is supported here and bound up here.’ When a disciple of a teacher attains this sort of grand distinction, Lohicca, that is a teacher not worthy of criticism in the world, and if anyone were to criticize this sort of teacher, the criticism would be false, unfactual, unrighteous, & blameworthy.

5. Bhikkhuni-samyutta — Nuns

Stories of the Evil One’s attempts to lure the nuns away from their meditation spots in the forest by asking them provocative questions. Without exception, these wise women conquer Mara decisively.

Sister Alavika

At Savatthi. Then, early in the morning, Alavika the nun put on her robes and, taking her bowl & outer robe, went into Savatthi for alms. When she had gone for alms in Savatthi and had returned from her alms round, after her meal she went to the Grove of the Blind to spend the day. Having gone deep into the Grove of the Blind, she sat down at the foot of a tree for the day’s abiding.

Then the Evil One, wanting to arouse fear, horripilation, & terror in her, wanting to make her fall away from seclusion, approached her & addressed her in verse:

There’s no
escape
in the world,
so what are you trying to do
with solitude?
Enjoy sensual delights.
Don’t be someone
who later regrets.

Then the thought occurred to Alavika the nun: “Now who has recited this verse — a human being or a non-human one?” Then it occurred to her: “This is the Evil One, who has recited this verse wanting to arouse fear, horripilation, & terror in me, wanting to make me fall away from seclusion.”

Then, having understood that “This is the Evil One,” she replied to him in verses:

There is
an escape in the world,
well touched by me
with discernment —
something that you,
you Evil One,
kinsman of the heedless,
don’t know.
Sensual pleasures
are like swords & spears;
the aggregates,
their executioner’s block.
What you call sensual delight
is no delight for me.
\"Stock
swords
spear

Then the Evil One — sad & dejected at realizing, “Alavika the nun knows me” — vanished right there.

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