Monday, 28 March 2011

Emergence of Disciplinary Rules (Vinayasikkha)


At the very beginning in the order there were no rules and regulation disciplinary or otherwise prescribed for the disciple of the Buddha. Those who entered the order in the first part of its history led their lives to achieve the purpose of realizing the truth. When the disciples were up to the stander there was no a necessity of promulgating disciplinary rules (vinayasikkha). The nature of exemplary life governed by principle, not by the rules of monks. In this era can be observed from the analysis of minor morality (cullasila) middle morality (majjhamasila) and major morality (mahAsila). That is found in many discourse of the section of morality (silakkhandha vagga) of the ∂ighanikAya and in some of the discourses of the µajjhimanikAya

 At that time there was a sect of principle that governed the life of monks it was called Ovadapatimokkha (the discipline of advice). The principle of monks lives that came under OvAdapAtimokkha are seen in following stanzas
‘‘Khanti paramaM tapo titikkhA - nibbAnaM paramaM vadanti Buddha
na hi pabbajito parUpaghAti - samaNo hoti paraM vihethayanto
                                                 (∂hammapada– 184)                     
= Patience is the highest austerity; the Buddha says that nibbana is the highest,
Indeed the ordained one does not harm another, the recluse does not oppresses other

ånUpavAdo anUpaghAto - pAtimokkhe ca samvaro
mattaJJuta ca bhattasmiM panthaJca sayanAsanaM
adhicitte ca Ayogo etaM buddhAnusAsana
                                           (∂hammapada- 185)

=Not insulting, not harming, restraining in the fundamental moral code.
Being moderate in food, and secluded in an abode.
Being intent in higher thought, this is the teaching of the Buddhas.

ßabbapApassa akaraNaM kusalassa upasampadA
sacittapariyodapanM etaM buddhAnusAsanaM
                                  (∂hammapada186 (buddhavagga)
=Not doing all evils, develop the wholesome
And taming own mind completely, this is the teaching of the buddhas
As recorded in the KakacUpamasutta of MN the Buddha praised the behaviour of early monks with the bhikkhu Moliyaphagguna.
ĀrAdhanimsu vatA me bhikkhave bhikkhU ekaM samayaM cittaM ne me bhikkhuve tesu bhikkhUsu anusAsanI karaNiya ahosi satuppAda karaNIyameva me tesu bhikkhUsu ahosi

= O monks! Those monks at one time indeed made me happy. In those monks thee advising by me was not neccassary. In those monks reminding by me was enough
 The words of the Buddha clearly show that there were no behaviour problems in early monks at all. That’s why the Buddha was happy but when he compared the later monks was not much happy and need to advise them from time to time.

As time went on this ideal situation change little by little. Indeed the promulgation of vinaya would be conducive for the good of the order. Once venerable ßAriputta requests the Buddha the reason for some dispensations of thr Buddhas to be long standing and short standing. In response to the question the Buddha says the dispensation of the Buddha Vipassi and Sikhi were not long standing but the dispensations of the buddhas Kakusanda, Konagama and kassapa were long standing for they promulgated disciplinary rules. On this account venerable SAriputa made this following request from the Buddha.

Etassa bhagavA kAlo etassa sugato kAlo yaM bhagavA sAvakAnaM sikkhApadaM paJJapeyya, uddiseyya pAtimokkhaM yadidaM brahmacariyaM adhaniyaM assa cIraTThitaM
=O The Blessed one, O The well Gone one! This is the time in which the Blessed one would promulgate disciplinary rules for disciples and instruct with the fundamental code of morality would make the noble life firm and long standing.

The Buddha said that he will promulgate disciplinary rule when the factors conducive the cankers (ĀsavaTThAniyadhamma) arises. The Buddha enumerates four reasons that are provoking ĀsavaTThanIyadhamma.

        Yato ca kho sAriputta idhekacce AsavaTThAniyA dhammA saGghe pAtubhavanti atha satthA sAvakAnam sikkhApadaM paJJApeti uddisati pAtimokkhaM tesaJJena AsavaTThAniya dhammAnaM pAtighAtaya

=O SAriputta! From which certain factors that are conducive to cankers arise in the sangha then the teacher will promulgate disciplinary rules for disciples would instruct with fundamental code of morality. For the destruction of those factors that are conducive to cankers.              

This attitude of the Buddha shows the liberal attitude he maintains on the monks as the teacher. In the Buddha’s view the rules were for human being and not the human beings are for rules. The buddha’s promulgation of the disciplinary rule has to be worked with mistake of man not the men in themselves.

The four grounds, on which the Buddha said that the ĀsavaTThanAyadhamma would arise, are as follows

1. ®attaJJumahattatA passing of long lapse of the time from the beginning of the order.
1.  VepullamahattatA largeness of the community
2.  ¬AbhaggamahattatA abundance of gains
3.  BAhusaccamahattatAgrowth of knowledge
4.  YasaggamahattatA development of fame

Among these five ĀsavaTThanIyaddhamms fifth the last is given not given in above mentioned source but it is only given in the BhaddAlisutta of the µajjhimanikAya.

After the twenty years of the beginning of the sAsana the first rule was introduced by the Buddha. Since the Buddha promulgated two hundred twenty seven (227) rules on the serious mistakes (garukApatti) and mistakes (lahUkapatti). They are classified into seven groups (sattApattikkhandha) according to the variousness of the mistake.

1.  PArajika
2.  ßaGghAdisesa
3.  †hullaccaya
4.  PAcittiya
5.  PATidesanIya
6.  ∂ukkaTa
7.  ∂ubbasita

Of these seven the first two are group under GarukApatti while the remainders are in lahukApatti.

1.   PArajika – the fore most serious misdeeds which are unrecoverable and performing one of them is the end of higher ordination of a bhikkhu.

2.   ßanghAdisesa – the thirteen recoverable mistakes which have to be purify with the participation of community.

3,4,5,6 and 7- is the misdeeds from which the purity can be attained after confessing (revealing the misdeeds of a co-resident). 

All the higher ordained monks are bound to observe these precepts it they happen to commit a mistake they are to be revealed to co-resident. By revealing the mistake to a wise co-resident (ViJJusabrahmacAri) he can purify the impurity of him.

In the BhaddaAlisuta of MN the Buddha says the following on the discipline of monks.

            “Vuddhihesa BhaddAli ariyassa vinaye yo accayaM accayato disvA yathaM dhammaM paTikaroti AyatiM samvaraM Apajjati

= O BhaddAli! If any one has seen the mistake as mistake and corrects it in according to the dhamma and come to the discipline in future indeed this is a development of noble discipline.

In Buddhist practice there is a practice called uposathkamma which stands for collective disciplinary work that is performed on full moon day by participation of higher ordained monks at the boundary or chapter house (sIma). This uposathakmma is called pAtimokkhadesana. In this assembly of community for the reciting uposathadesana there happen two things.

1.   Being reminded of one’s purity
2.   Being reminded of disciplinary rules together and being advised by the elder monk to the assembly.

      Before the promulgation of vinaya rules it was called OvAdapAtimokkha and after the introduction of rules it is called ĀnapAtimokkha. What the Buddha recommended for monks to practice the uposathakmma is recorded in the MahAvaggapAli as follows.
YannunAhaM yAni mayA bhikkhUnaM paJJattAni sikkhapadAni tAni nesaM pATimokkhaddesaM anujAneyyaM so tesaM bhavissati uposathakamma

=Good if I allow what have been promulgated for monks by me as precepts them as their utterance of the code of rules. It will be the activity on full moon day.

There are ten usages aims of disciplinary rules as recorded in the PArajikapAli.

1.  ßaGghasuTThutAya – For the good of the community
2.  ßaGghapAsutAya – For the comfort of community
3.   DummankUraM puggalAnaM niggahAya – for the disrespect  of ill-behaviour monks
4.  PhesalAnaM bhikkhUnaM phAsaviharAya – For the comfort living of well behaved monks
5.  ∂iTThadhammikAnaM AsavAnaM samvarAya  - For the discipline of the present cankers
6.  ßamparAyikAnaM  AsavAnaM paTighAtAya – For the prevention of future cankers
7.   AppasannAnaM vA pasAdAya – For the pleasantness of the unpleasant
8.  PasannAnaM bhIyobhAvAya – For the growth of pleasantness of the pleasant
9.  ßaddhammatthiya – For the establishment of true doctrine
10. VinayAnugghAya – In support of discipline.

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