Sunday, February 7, 2010

Buddha Message To Those Who Doubt

Buddha Message To Those Who Doubt Image
Wisdom Quarterly based on Ven. Soma Thera translation, Kalama Sutta (AN 3.65)

(DhammaCity) Kalama Sutra, readings from the Pali Canon by Sangharakshita.

Message to the Kalamas


1. Thus have I heard. Once the Buddha, while wandering in the country with a large community of monastic disciples, entered a town called Kesaputta. The Kalamas inhabiting Kesaputta said:

* "Reverend Gautama, the monk, the son of the Sakyans, while wandering in the Kosala country, has entered Kesaputta. This good repute has spread about him: 'Indeed, the Blessed One is consummate, fully enlightened, endowed with knowledge and practice, sublime, knower of the worlds, peerless, guide for those to be tamed, teacher of divine and human beings, which he himself has gained through direct knowledge.

The Buddha with a large number of monastics addresses the people of Kesaputta, India.

* He sets forth the Dharma, which good in the beginning, good in the middle, good in the end, possessed of meaning in letter and spirit, and complete in everything. And he proclaims the high life [direct path to enlightenment, brahmacarya] that is perfectly pure. Seeing such consummate ones is good indeed.'"

Asking for Guidance


3. The Kalamas in Kesaputta sitting respectfully to one side said to the Buddha:

"There are some ascetics and brahmins, venerable sir, who visit Kesaputta. They expound and explain only their own doctrines. The doctrines of others they despise, revile, and pull to pieces.

"Some other ascetics and brahmins, venerable sir, come to Kesaputta. They expound and explain only their own doctrines. The doctrines of others they despise, revile, and pull to pieces.

"Venerable sir, there is doubt, there is uncertainty in us concerning them. Which of these reverend ascetics and brahmins spoke the truth and which falsehood?"

Criterion for Rejection


4. "It is proper for you, Kalamas, to doubt, to be uncertain. Uncertainty has arisen in you about what is doubtful. Come, Kalamas. Do not go upon:

* what has been acquired by repeated hearing
* nor upon tradition
* nor upon rumor
* nor upon what is scripture
* nor upon surmise
* nor upon axiom
* nor upon specious reasoning
* nor upon bias toward a notion that has been pondered
* nor upon another's seeming ability
* nor upon the consideration, 'The ascetic is our teacher.'

"But, Kalamas, when you yourselves know":

* These things are bad these things are blameworthy
* these things are censured by the wise
* when undertaken and observed, these things lead to harm and ill,' abandon them.

Greed, Hate, and Delusion

5. "What do you think, Kalamas? Does greed appear in a person for one's benefit or harm?"

"For harm, venerable sir."

"Kalamas, being given to greed, and being overwhelmed and mentally vanquished by greed, this person takes life, steals, engages in sexual misconduct, tells lies, and prompts another to do likewise. Will that be long for harm and ill?"

"Yes, venerable sir."

6. "What do you think, Kalamas? Does hate appear...?"
7. "What do you think, Kalamas? Does delusion appear...?"
8. "What do you think, Kalamas? Are these things profitable or unprofitable?"

"Unprofitable, venerable sir."

"Blameworthy or not blameworthy?"

"Blameworthy, venerable sir."

"Censured or praised by the wise?"

"Censured, venerable sir."

"When undertaken and observed, do these things lead to harm and ill or not? Or how does it strike you?"

"When undertaken and observed, these things lead to harm and ill. Thus it strikes us here." 9. "Therefore, Kalamas, was it said: 'Come Kalamas. Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing, nor upon tradition, nor upon rumor... But when you yourselves know: 'These things are unprofitable; these things are blameworthy; these things are censured by the wise; when undertaken and observed, these things lead to harm and ill," abandon them.'

Criterion for Acceptance


10. "Come, Kalamas. Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing, nor upon tradition, nor upon rumor... But, Kalamas, when you yourselves know: 'These things are profitable; these things are praiseworthy; these things are lauded by the wise; when undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness,' enter on and abide in them.

Absence of greed, hate, and delusion

11. "What do you think, Kalamas? Does the absence of greed appear in a person for benefit or harm?"

"For benefit, venerable sir."

"Kalamas, not being given to greed, and not being overwhelmed or mentally vanquished by greed, one does not take life, does not steal, does not engage in sexual misconduct, does not tell lies, and does not prompt others to do likewise. Will that be long for one's benefit and happiness?"

"Yes, venerable sir."

12. "What do you think, Kalamas? Does the absence of hate appear in a person for benefit or harm?"

"For benefit, venerable sir."...

13. "What do you think, Kalamas? Does the absence of delusion appear in a man for his benefit or harm?"...

14. "What do you think, Kalamas? Are these things profitable or unprofitable?"

"Profitable, venerable sir."...

15. "Therefore, Kalamas, was it said: 'Come Kalamas. Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing, nor upon tradition, nor upon rumor...' But, Kalamas, when you yourselves know: 'These things are profitable; these things are not praiseworthy; these things are lauded by the wise; when undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness," enter on and abide in them.'

The Four Divine Abidings


16. "Kalamas, the disciple of the Noble Ones practices in this way [the four Brahma Viharas or Exalted Dwellings]. Devoid of coveting (greed), devoid of ill will (hate), devoid of confusion (delusion) -- but mindful and clearly comprehending -- dwells pervading with thoughts of loving-kindness

* one quarter [of the world, the cosmos]
* likewise the second
* likewise the third
* likewise the fourth
* so above, below, and across
* one dwells having pervaded all living beings everywhere in the entire world (cosmos) with thoughts of loving-kindness that is free of hate or malice, grown great, exalted, immeasurable (boundless, universal).

"One dwells having pervaded with thoughts of compassion, one quarter, likewise the second, likewise the third, likewise the fourth, so above, below, and across; one dwells having pervaded all living beings everywhere in the entire world with thoughts of compassion that is free of hate or malice, grown great, exalted, immeasurable.

"One lives having pervaded with thoughts of gladness, one quarter....

"One lives having pervaded with thoughts of equanimity, one quarter....

The Four Solaces


17. "Kalamas, the disciple of the Noble Ones practices in this way. With such a hate-free mind, such a malice-free mind, such an undefiled mind, such a purified mind is one who finds four solaces here and now.

"'Suppose there is a hereafter [existence to come beyond this life] and there is a fruit, result, of deeds done well or ill [karma]. Then it is possible that at the dissolution of the body after death, I shall arise in better worlds, which are possessed of states of bliss.' This is the first solace found by such a person.

"'Suppose there is no hereafter [no rebirth] and there is no fruit, no result, of deeds done well or ill [no karma]. Yet in this world, here and now, free from hatred, free from malice, safe, sound, and happy, I keep myself.' This is the second solace.

"'Suppose harmful (results) befall the doer of harm. I, however, think of doing no harm to anyone. Then, how can ill (results) affect me?' This is the third solace.

"'Suppose harmful (results) do not befall one who harms others. Then I see myself purified in any case.' This is the fourth solace.

"Kalamas, the disciple of the Noble Ones who has such a hate-free mind, such a malice-free mind, such an undefiled mind, such a purified mind is one who finds, here and now, these four solaces."

The Kalamas' Reaction


"So it is, Blessed One! So it is, Sublime One! Venerable sir, the disciple of the Noble Ones who has such a hate-free mind, such a malice-free mind, such an undefiled mind, such a purified mind finds, here and now, these four solaces!

"Marvelous, venerable sir! Marvelous, venerable sir! Venerable sir, it is as if a person were to turn upward what had been overturned, or to uncover what was concealed, or to point the way to one who was lost, or to carry a lamp into the darkness, thinking: 'Those who have eyes will now be able to see.'

"So has the Dharma been set forth in many ways by the Blessed One. Venerable sir, we go to the Blessed One for guidance, to this Dharma for guidance, and to the Sangha [order of accomplished practitioners] for guidance.

"Venerable sir, may the Blessed One regard us as lay followers who have gone for guidance from this day forward."

* A Look at the Kalama Sutta (Bhikkhu Bodhi)
* The Right to Ask Questions (Larry Rosenberg)

You also may enjoy this free books:

Aleister Crowley - Liber 002 The Message Of The Master Therion
Graham Hancock - The Message Of The Sphinx
Max Heindel - The Message Of The Stars

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