(Note: Part 5 is here.)

AN 1.114-139 - Negligence

“Mendicants, I do not see a single thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching like negligence. Negligence leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.”

“Mendicants, I do not see a single thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching like diligence. Diligence leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.”

“Mendicants, I do not see a single thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching like laziness. Laziness leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.”

“Mendicants, I do not see a single thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching like arousing energy. Arousing energy leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.”

“Mendicants, I do not see a single thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching like having many wishes … having few wishes … lack of contentment … contentment … improper attention … proper attention … lack of situational awareness … situational awareness … bad friends … good friends … pursuing bad habits and not good habits. Pursuing bad habits and not good habits leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.”

“Mendicants, I do not see a single thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching like pursuing good habits and not bad habits. Pursuing good habits and not bad habits leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain what is not the teaching as the teaching are acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans. They make much bad karma and make the true teaching disappear.”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain what is the teaching as not the teaching are acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans. They make much bad karma and make the true teaching disappear.”

“Those mendicants who explain what is not found in the texts on monastic training as found in those texts … what is found in the texts on monastic training as not found in those texts … what was not spoken and stated by the Realized One as spoken and stated by the Realized One … what was spoken and stated by the Realized One as not spoken and stated by the Realized One … what was not practiced by the Realized One as practiced by the Realized One … what was practiced by the Realized One as not practiced by the Realized One … what was not prescribed by the Realized One as prescribed by the Realized One … what was prescribed by the Realized One as not prescribed by the Realized One are acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans. They make much bad karma and make the true teaching disappear.”

AN 1.140-149 - “Not the Teaching”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain what is not the teaching as not the teaching are acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans. They make much merit and make the true teaching continue.”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain what is the teaching as the teaching are acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans. They make much merit and make the true teaching continue.”

“Those mendicants who explain what is not found in the texts on monastic training as not found in the texts on monastic training … what is found in the texts on monastic training as found in the texts on monastic training … what was not spoken and stated by the Realized One as not spoken and stated by the Realized One … what was spoken and stated by the Realized One as spoken and stated by the Realized One … what was not practiced by the Realized One as not practiced by the Realized One … what was practiced by the Realized One as practiced by the Realized One … what was not prescribed by the Realized One as not prescribed by the Realized One … what was prescribed by the Realized One as prescribed by the Realized One … are acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans. They make much merit and make the true teaching continue.”

AN 1.150-169 - Non-Offense

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain non-offense as an offense are acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans. They make much bad karma and make the true teaching disappear.”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain an offense as non-offense are acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans. Those mendicants make much bad karma and make the true teaching disappear.”

“Those mendicants who explain a light offense as a serious offense … a serious offense as a light offense … an offense committed with corrupt intention as an offense not committed with corrupt intention … an offense not committed with corrupt intention as an offense committed with corrupt intention … an offense requiring rehabilitation as an offense not requiring rehabilitation … an offense not requiring rehabilitation as an offense requiring rehabilitation … an offense with redress as an offense without redress … an offense without redress as an offense with redress are acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans. Those mendicants make much bad karma and make the true teaching disappear.”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain non-offense as non-offense are acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans. They make much merit and make the true teaching continue.”

“Mendicants, those mendicants who explain an offense as an offense are acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans. They make much merit and make the true teaching continue.”

“Those mendicants who explain a light offense as a light offense … a serious offense as a serious offense … an offense committed with corrupt intention as an offense committed with corrupt intention … an offense not committed with corrupt intention as an offense not committed with corrupt intention … an offense requiring rehabilitation as an offense requiring rehabilitation … an offense not requiring rehabilitation as an offense not requiring rehabilitation … an offense with redress as an offense with redress … an offense without redress as an offense without redress are acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of the people, of gods and humans. They make much merit and make the true teaching continue.”

AN 1.320-332

“Mendicants, the one who encourages someone in a poorly explained teaching and training, the one who they encourage, and the one who practices accordingly all make much bad karma. Why is that? Because the teaching is poorly explained.”

“Mendicants, the one who encourages someone in a well explained teaching and training, the one who they encourage, and the one who practices accordingly all make much merit. Why is that? Because the teaching is well explained.”

“Mendicants, in a poorly explained teaching and training, the donor should know moderation, not the recipient. Why is that? Because the teaching is poorly explained.”

“Mendicants, in a well explained teaching and training, the recipient should know moderation, not the donor. Why is that? Because the teaching is well explained.”

“Mendicants, in a poorly explained teaching and training an energetic person lives in suffering. Why is that? Because the teaching is poorly explained.”

“Mendicants, in a well explained teaching and training a lazy person lives in suffering. Why is that? Because the teaching is well explained.”

“Mendicants, in a poorly explained teaching and training a lazy person lives happily. Why is that? Because the teaching is poorly explained.”

“Mendicants, in a well explained teaching and training an energetic person lives happily. Why is that? Because the teaching is well explained.”

“Just as, mendicants, even a tiny bit of fecal matter still stinks, so too I don’t approve of even a tiny bit of continued existence, not even as long as a finger snap.”

“Just as even a tiny bit of urine, or spit, or pus, or blood still stinks, so too I don’t approve of even a tiny bit of continued existence, not even as long as a finger snap.”

AN 1.394-401

“If, mendicants, a mendicant develops the first absorption, even as long as a finger snap, they are called a mendicant who does not lack absorption, who follows the Teacher’s instructions, who responds to advice, and who does not eat the country’s alms in vain. How much more so those who make much of it!”

“If, mendicants, a mendicant develops the second … third … or fourth absorption … or the heart’s release by love … or the heart’s release by compassion … or the heart’s release by rejoicing … or the heart’s release by equanimity, even as long as a finger snap … they are called a mendicant who does not lack absorption, who follows the Teacher’s instructions, who responds to advice, and who does not eat the country’s alms in vain. How much more so those who make much of it!”

AN 2.39

“At a time when bandits are strong, kings are weak. Then the king is not at ease when going out or coming back or when touring the provinces. The brahmins and householders, likewise, are not at ease when going out or coming back, or when inspecting their business activities. In the same way, at a time when bad mendicants are strong, good-hearted mendicants are weak. Then the good-hearted mendicants continually adhere to silence in the midst of the Saṅgha, or they stay in the borderlands. This is for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of many people, of gods and humans.

At a time when kings are strong, bandits are weak. Then the king is at ease when going out or coming back or when inspecting the provinces. The brahmins and householders, likewise, are at ease when going out or coming back, or when inspecting their business activities. In the same way, at a time when good-hearted mendicants are strong, bad mendicants are weak. Then the bad mendicants continually adhere to silence in the midst of the Saṅgha, or they leave for some place or other. This is for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans.”)

AN 2.42-44 - Assemblies

  1. “There are, mendicants, these two assemblies. What two? A shallow assembly and a deep assembly. And what is a shallow assembly? An assembly where the mendicants are restless, insolent, fickle, gossipy, loose-tongued, unmindful, lacking situational awareness and immersion, with straying minds and undisciplined faculties. This is called a shallow assembly.

    And what is a deep assembly? An assembly where the mendicants are not restless, insolent, fickle, gossipy, or loose-tongued, but have established mindfulness, situational awareness, immersion, unified minds, and restrained faculties. This is called a deep assembly. These are the two assemblies. The better of these two assemblies is the deep assembly.”

  2. “There are, mendicants, these two assemblies. What two? A divided assembly and a harmonious assembly. And what is a divided assembly? An assembly where the mendicants argue, quarrel, and fight, continually wounding each other with barbed words. This is called a divided assembly.

    And what is a harmonious assembly? An assembly where the mendicants live in harmony, appreciating each other, without quarreling, blending like milk and water, and regarding each other with kindly eyes. This is called a harmonious assembly. These are the two assemblies. The better of these two assemblies is the harmonious assembly.”

  3. “There are, mendicants, these two assemblies. What two? An assembly of the worst and an assembly of the best. And what is an assembly of the worst? An assembly where the senior mendicants are indulgent and slack, leaders in backsliding, neglecting seclusion, not rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. Those who come after follow their example. They too become indulgent and slack, leaders in backsliding, neglecting seclusion, not rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. This is called an assembly of the worst.

    And what is an assembly of the best? An assembly where the senior mendicants are not indulgent or slack, nor are they backsliders; instead, they take the lead in seclusion, rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. Those who come after follow their example. They too are not indulgent or slack, nor are they backsliders; instead, they take the lead in seclusion, rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. This is called an assembly of the best. These are the two assemblies. The better of these two assemblies is the assembly of the best.”

AN 2.47-49 - Assemblies

  1. “There are, mendicants, these two assemblies. What two? An assembly educated in fancy talk, not in questioning, and an assembly educated in questioning, not in fancy talk. And what is an assembly educated in fancy talk, not in questioning? It is an assembly where, when discourses spoken by the Realized One—deep, profound, transcendent, dealing with emptiness—are being recited the mendicants do not want to listen. They don’t pay attention or apply their minds to understand them, nor do they think those teachings are worth learning and memorizing. But when discourses composed by poets—poetry, with fancy words and phrases, composed by outsiders or spoken by disciples—are being recited the mendicants do want to listen. They pay attention and apply their minds to understand them, and they think those teachings are worth learning and memorizing. But when they’ve learned those teachings they don’t question or examine each other, saying: ‘Why does it say this? What does that mean?’ So they don’t clarify what is unclear, or reveal what is obscure, or dispel doubt regarding the many doubtful matters. This is called an assembly educated in fancy talk, not in questioning.

    And what is an assembly educated in questioning, not in fancy talk? It is an assembly where, when discourses composed by poets—poetry, with fancy words and phrases, composed by outsiders or spoken by disciples—are being recited the mendicants do not want to listen. They don’t pay attention or apply their minds to understand them, nor do they think those teachings are worth learning and memorizing. But when discourses spoken by the Realized One—deep, profound, transcendent, dealing with emptiness—are being recited the mendicants do want to listen. They pay attention and apply their minds to understand them, and they think those teachings are worth learning and memorizing. And when they’ve learned those teachings they question and examine each other, saying: ‘Why does it say this? What does that mean?’ So they clarify what is unclear, reveal what is obscure, and dispel doubt regarding the many doubtful matters. This is called an assembly educated in questioning, not in fancy talk. These are the two assemblies. The better of these two assemblies is the assembly educated in questioning, not in fancy talk.”

  2. There are, mendicants, these two assemblies. What two? An assembly that values material things, not the true teaching, and an assembly that values the true teaching, not material things. And what is an assembly that values material things, not the true teaching? It is an assembly where the mendicants praise each other in front of the white-clothed laypeople, saying: ‘The mendicant so-and-so is freed both ways; so-and-so is freed by wisdom; so-and-so is a personal witness; so-and-so is attained to view; so-and-so is freed by faith; so-and-so is a follower of the teachings; so-and-so is a follower by faith; so-and-so is ethical, of good character; so-and-so is unethical, of bad character.’ In this way they get material things. And when they get these things, they use them tied, infatuated, attached, blind to the drawbacks, and not understanding the escape. This is called an assembly that values material things, not the true teaching.

    And what is an assembly that values the true teaching, not material things? It is an assembly where the mendicants don’t praise each other in front of the white-clothed laypeople, saying: ‘The mendicant so-and-so is freed both ways; so-and-so is freed by wisdom; so-and-so is a personal witness; so-and-so is attained to view; so-and-so is freed by faith; so-and-so is a follower of the teachings; so-and-so is a follower by faith; so-and-so is ethical, of good character; so-and-so is unethical, of bad character.’ In this way they get material things. And when they get these things, they use them untied, uninfatuated, unattached, seeing the drawbacks, and understanding the escape. This is called an assembly that values the true teaching, not material things. These are the two assemblies. The better of these two assemblies is the assembly that values the true teaching, not material things.”

  3. “There are, mendicants, these two assemblies. What two? An unjust assembly and a just assembly. And what is an unjust assembly? An assembly where legal acts against the teaching proceed, while legal acts in line with the teaching don’t proceed. Legal acts against the training proceed, while legal acts in line with the training don’t proceed. Legal acts against the teaching are explained, while legal acts in line with the teaching aren’t explained. Legal acts against the training are explained, while legal acts in line with the training aren’t explained. This is called an unjust assembly.

    And what is a just assembly? An assembly where legal acts in line with the teaching proceed, while legal acts against the teaching don’t proceed. Legal acts in line with the training proceed, while legal acts against the training don’t proceed. Legal acts in line with the teaching are explained, while legal acts against the teaching aren’t explained. Legal acts in line with the training are explained, while legal acts against the training aren’t explained. This is called a just assembly. These are the two assemblies. The better of these two assemblies is the just assembly.”

AN 2.63

“In a disciplinary issue, when the tale-bearing on both sides—with contempt for each other’s views, resentful, bitter, and exasperated—is not settled internally, you can expect that this disciplinary issue will be long, fractious, and troublesome, and the mendicants won’t live comfortably.

In a disciplinary issue, when the tale-bearing on both sides—with contempt for each other’s views, resentful, bitter, and exasperated—is well settled internally, you can expect that this disciplinary issue won’t lead to lasting acrimony and enmity, and the mendicants will live comfortably.”)

AN 2.100-117

(One is wise or one is a fool, wether they know what is and is not dhamma, is and is not vinaya, etc.)

AN 2.118-122

“These two hopes are hard to give up. What two? The hope for wealth and the hope for long life. These are two hopes that are hard to give up.”

“These two people are rare in the world. What two? One who takes the initiative, and one who is grateful and thankful. These are the two people who are rare in the world.”

“These two people are rare in the world. What two? One who is satisfied, and one who satisfies others. These are the two people who are rare in the world.”

“These two people are hard to satisfy in the world. What two? One who continually hoards wealth, and one who continually wastes wealth. These are the two people who are hard to satisfy in the world.”

“These two people are easy to satisfy in the world. What two? One who does not continually hoard wealth, and one who does not continually waste wealth. These are the two people who are easy to satisfy in the world.”

AN 2.130-133

(Note how the ideal laywomen to emulate are Khujjuttarā and Veḷukaṇṭakī, but not Visakha)

“A faithful monk would rightly aspire: ‘May I be like Sāriputta and Moggallāna!’ These are a standard and a measure for my monk disciples, that is, Sāriputta and Moggallāna.”

“A faithful nun would rightly aspire: ‘May I be like the nuns Khemā and Uppalavaṇṇā!’ These are a standard and a measure for my nun disciples, that is, the nuns Khemā and Uppalavaṇṇā.”

“A faithful layman would rightly aspire: ‘May I be like the householder Citta and Hatthaka of Aḷavī!’ These are a standard and a measure for my male lay followers, that is, the householder Citta and Hatthaka of Aḷavī.”

“A faithful laywoman would rightly aspire: ‘May I be like the laywomen Khujjuttarā and Veḷukaṇṭakī, Nanda’s mother!’ These are a standard and a measure for my female lay disciples, that is, the laywomen Khujjuttarā and Veḷukaṇṭakī, Nanda’s mother.”

AN 2.134-135

“When a foolish, incompetent bad person has two qualities they keep themselves broken and damaged. They deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much bad karma. What two? Without examining or scrutinizing, they praise those deserving of criticism and they criticize those deserving of praise. When a foolish, incompetent bad person has these two qualities they keep themselves broken and damaged. They deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much bad karma.

When an astute, competent good person has two qualities they keep themselves healthy and whole. They don’t deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much merit. What two? After examining and scrutinizing, they criticize those deserving of criticism and they praise those deserving of praise. When an astute, competent good person has these two qualities they keep themselves healthy and whole. They don’t deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much merit.”

“When a foolish, incompetent bad person has two qualities they keep themselves broken and damaged. They deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much bad karma. What two? Without examining or scrutinizing, they arouse faith in things that are dubious, and they don’t arouse faith in things that are inspiring. When a foolish, incompetent bad person has these two qualities they keep themselves broken and damaged. They deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much bad karma.

When an astute, competent good person has two qualities they keep themselves healthy and whole. They don’t deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much merit. What two? After examining or scrutinizing, they don’t arouse faith in things that are dubious, and they do arouse faith in things that are inspiring. When an astute, competent good person has these two qualities they keep themselves healthy and whole. They don’t deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much merit.”

AN 3.5 - Carelessly

“Bhikkhus, one who possesses three qualities should be known as a fool. What three? (1) He formulates a question carelessly; (2) he replies to a question carelessly; (3) when another person replies to a question carefully, with well-rounded and coherent words and phrases, he does not approve of it. One who possesses these three qualities should be known as a fool.

“One who possesses three qualities should be known as a wise person. What three? (1) He formulates a question carefully; (2) he replies to a question carefully; (3) when another person replies to a question carefully, with well-rounded and coherent words and phrases, he approves of it. One who possesses these three qualities should be known as a wise person.

“Therefore … It is in this way that you should train yourselves.”

AN 3.27 - Offensive (Persons)

“These three people are found in the world. What three? There is a person who you should be disgusted by, and you shouldn’t associate with, accompany, or attend them. There is a person you should regard with equanimity, and you shouldn’t associate with, accompany, or attend them. There is a person you should associate with, accompany, and attend.

Who is the person you should be disgusted by, and not associate with, accompany, or attend? It’s a person who is unethical, of bad qualities, filthy, with suspicious behavior, underhand, no true ascetic or spiritual practitioner—though claiming to be one—rotten inside, corrupt, and depraved. You should be disgusted by such a person, and you shouldn’t associate with, accompany, or attend them. Why is that? Even if you don’t follow the example of such a person, you still get a bad reputation: ‘That individual has bad friends, companions, and associates.’ They’re like a snake that’s been living in a pile of dung. Even if it doesn’t bite, it’ll still rub off on you. In the same way, even if you don’t follow the example of such a person, you still get a bad reputation: ‘That individual has bad friends, companions, and associates.’ That’s why you should be disgusted by such a person, and you shouldn’t associate with, accompany, or attend them.

Who is the person you should regard with equanimity, and not associate with, accompany, or attend? It’s a person who is irritable and bad-tempered. Even when lightly criticized they lose their temper, becoming annoyed, hostile, and hard-hearted, and they display annoyance, hate, and bitterness. They’re like a festering sore, which, when you hit it with a stick or a stone, discharges even more. In the same way, someone is irritable and bad-tempered. They’re like a firebrand of pale-moon ebony, which, when you hit it with a stick or a stone, sizzles and crackles even more. In the same way, someone is irritable and bad-tempered. They’re like a sewer, which, when you stir it with a stick or a stone, stinks even more. In the same way, someone is irritable and bad-tempered. Even when lightly criticized they lose their temper, becoming annoyed, hostile, and hard-hearted, and they display annoyance, hate, and bitterness. You should regard such a person with equanimity, and you shouldn’t associate with, accompany, or attend them. Why is that? Thinking, ‘They might abuse or insult me, or do me harm.’ That’s why you should regard such a person with equanimity, and you shouldn’t associate with, accompany, or attend them.

Who is the person you should associate with, accompany, and attend? It’s someone who is ethical, of good character. You should associate with, accompany, and attend such a person. Why is that? Even if you don’t follow the example of such a person, you still get a good reputation: ‘That individual has good friends, companions, and associates.’ That’s why you should associate with, accompany, and attend such a person.

These are the three people found in the world.

A man who associates with an inferior goes downhill,
but associating with an equal, you’ll never decline;
following the best, you’ll quickly rise up,
so you should keep company with people better than you.”

AN 3.28 - Speech like Dung

“These three kinds of people are found in the world. What three? One with speech like dung, one with speech like flowers, and one with speech like honey.

And who has speech like dung? It’s someone who is summoned to a council, an assembly, a family meeting, a guild, or to the royal court, and asked to bear witness: ‘Please, mister, say what you know.’ Not knowing, they say ‘I know.’ Knowing, they say ‘I don’t know.’ Not seeing, they say ‘I see.’ And seeing, they say ‘I don’t see.’ So they deliberately lie for the sake of themselves or another, or for some trivial worldly reason. This is called a person with speech like dung.

And who has speech like flowers? It’s someone who is summoned to a council, an assembly, a family meeting, a guild, or to the royal court, and asked to bear witness: ‘Please, mister, say what you know.’ Not knowing, they say ‘I don’t know.’ Knowing, they say ‘I know.’ Not seeing, they say ‘I don’t see.’ And seeing, they say ‘I see.’ So they don’t deliberately lie for the sake of themselves or another, or for some trivial worldly reason. This is called a person with speech like flowers.

And who has speech like honey? It’s someone who gives up harsh speech. They speak in a way that’s mellow, pleasing to the ear, lovely, going to the heart, polite, likable and agreeable to the people. This is called a person with speech like honey.

These are the three people found in the world.”

AN 3.50 - A Master Thief

(Also see AN 5.103)

“Mendicants, a master thief with three factors breaks into houses, plunders wealth, steals from isolated buildings, and commits highway robbery. What three?

A master thief relies on uneven ground, on thick cover, and on powerful individuals. And how does a master thief rely on uneven ground? It’s when a master thief relies on inaccessible riverlands or rugged mountains. That’s how a master thief relies on uneven ground.

And how does a master thief rely on thick cover? It’s when a master thief relies on thick grass, thick trees, a ridge, or a large dense wood. That’s how a master thief relies on thick cover.

And how does a master thief rely on powerful individuals? It’s when a master thief relies on rulers or their ministers. They think: ‘If anyone accuses me of anything, these rulers or their ministers will speak in my defense in the case.’ And that’s exactly what happens. That’s how a master thief relies on powerful individuals.

A master thief with these three factors breaks into houses, plunders wealth, steals from isolated buildings, and commits highway robbery.

In the same way, when a bad mendicant has three factors, they keep themselves broken and damaged. They deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much bad karma. What three?

A bad mendicant relies on uneven ground, on thick cover, and on powerful individuals.

And how does a bad mendicant rely on uneven ground? It’s when a bad mendicant has unethical conduct by way of body, speech, and mind. That’s how a bad mendicant relies on uneven ground.

And how does a bad mendicant rely on thick cover? It’s when a bad mendicant has wrong view, he’s attached to an extremist view. That’s how a bad mendicant relies on thick cover.

And how does a bad mendicant rely on powerful individuals? It’s when a bad mendicant relies on rulers or their ministers. They think: ‘If anyone accuses me of anything, these rulers or their ministers will speak in my defense in the case.’ And that’s exactly what happens. That’s how a bad mendicant relies on powerful individuals.

When a bad mendicant has these three factors, they keep themselves broken and damaged. They deserve to be blamed and criticized by sensible people, and they make much bad karma.”

AN 3.57 - Vaccha

(On the finer points of merit making, and how it’s also meritorious to give to non-monks)

AN 3.61 - Sectarian

“Bhikkhus, there are these three sectarian tenets which, when questioned, interrogated, and cross-examined by the wise, and taken to their conclusion, will eventuate in non-doing. What are the three?

  1. “There are, bhikkhus, some ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by what was done in the past.’

  2. There are other ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by God’s creative activity.’

  3. And there are still other ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that occurs without a cause or condition.’

“Bhikkhus, I approached those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by past deeds,’ and I said to them: ‘Is it true that you venerable ones hold such a doctrine and view?’ When I ask them this, they affirm it. Then I say to them:

  1. ‘In such a case, it is due to past deeds that you might destroy life, take what is not given, indulge in sexual activity, speak falsehood, utter divisive speech, speak harshly, indulge in idle chatter; that you might be full of longing, have a mind of ill will, and hold wrong view.’

    “Those who fall back on past deeds as the essential truth have no desire to do what should be done and to avoid doing what should not be done, nor do they make an effort in this respect. Since they do not apprehend as true and valid anything that should be done or should not be done, they are muddle-minded, they do not guard themselves, and even the personal designation ‘ascetic’ could not be legitimately applied to them. This was my first legitimate refutation of those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view.

“Then, bhikkhus, I approached those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-pain-nor-pleasure—all that is caused by God’s creative activity,’ and I said to them: ‘Is it true that you venerable ones hold such a doctrine and view?’ When I ask them this, they affirm it. Then I say to them:

  1. ‘In such a case, it is due to God’s creative activity that you might destroy life … and hold wrong view.’

    “Those who fall back on God’s creative activity as the essential truth have no desire to do what should be done and to avoid doing what should not be done, nor do they make an effort in this respect. Since they do not apprehend as true and valid anything that should be done or should not be done, they are muddle-minded, they do not guard themselves, and even the personal designation ‘ascetic’ could not be legitimately applied to them. This was my second legitimate refutation of those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view.

“Then, bhikkhus, I approached those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view as this: ‘Whatever this person experiences—whether pleasure, pain, or neither-painnor-pleasure—all that occurs without a cause or condition,’ and I said to them: ‘Is it true that you venerable ones hold such a doctrine and view?’ When I ask them this, they affirm it. Then I say to them:

  1. ‘In such a case, it is without a cause or condition that you might destroy life … and hold wrong view.’

    “Those who fall back on absence of cause and condition as the essential truth have no desire to do what should be done and to avoid doing what should not be done, nor do they make an effort in this respect. Since they do not apprehend as true and valid anything that should be done or should not be done, they are muddle-minded, they do not guard themselves, and even the personal designation ‘ascetic’ could not be legitimately applied to them. This was my third legitimate refutation of those ascetics and brahmins who hold such a doctrine and view.

“These, bhikkhus, are the three sectarian tenets which, when questioned, interrogated, and cross-examined by the wise, and taken to their conclusion, will eventuate in non-doing.

AN 3.67 - Topics of Discussion

“There are, mendicants, these three topics of discussion. What three? You might discuss the past: ‘That is how it was in the past.’ You might discuss the future: ‘That is how it will be in the future.’ Or you might discuss the present: ‘This is how it is at present.’

You can know whether or not a person is competent to hold a discussion by seeing how they take part in a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if it needs to be answered with a generalization and they don’t answer it generally; or if it needs analysis and they answer without analyzing it; or if it needs a counter-question and they answer without a counter-question; or if it should be set aside and they don’t set it aside, then that person is not competent to hold a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if it needs to be answered with a generalization and they answer it generally; or if it needs analysis and they answer after analyzing it; or if it needs a counter-question and they answer with a counter-question; or if it should be set aside and they set it aside, then that person is competent to hold a discussion.

You can know whether or not a person is competent to hold a discussion by seeing how they take part in a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if they’re not consistent about what their position is and what it isn’t; about what they propose; about speaking from what they know; and about the appropriate procedure, then that person is not competent to hold a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if they are consistent about what their position is and what it isn’t; about what they propose; about speaking from what they know; and about the appropriate procedure, then that person is competent to hold a discussion.

You can know whether or not a person is competent to hold a discussion by seeing how they take part in a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if they dodge the issue; distract the discussion with irrelevant points; or display annoyance, hate, and bitterness, then that person is not competent to hold a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if they don’t dodge the issue; distract the discussion with irrelevant points; or display annoyance, hate, and bitterness, then that person is competent to hold a discussion.

You can know whether or not a person is competent to hold a discussion by seeing how they take part in a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if they intimidate, crush, mock, or seize on trivial mistakes, then that person is not competent to hold a discussion. When a person is asked a question, if they don’t intimidate, crush, mock, or seize on trivial mistakes, then that person is competent to hold a discussion.

You can know whether or not a person has what’s required by seeing how they take part in a discussion. If they lend an ear they have what’s required; if they don’t lend an ear they don’t have what’s required. Someone who has what’s required directly knows one thing, completely understands one thing, gives up one thing, and realizes one thing—and then they experience complete freedom. This is the purpose of discussion, consultation, the requirements, and listening well, that is, the liberation of the mind by not grasping.

Those who converse with hostility,
too sure of themselves, arrogant,
ignoble, attacking virtues,
they look for flaws in each other.

They rejoice together when their opponent
speaks poorly and makes a mistake,
becoming confused and defeated—
but the noble ones don’t discuss like this.

If an astute person wants to hold a discussion
connected with the teaching and its meaning—
the kind of discussion that noble ones hold—
then that wise one should start the discussion,

knowing when the time is right,
neither hostile nor arrogant.
Not over-excited,
contemptuous, or aggressive,

or with a mind full of jealousy,
they’d speak from what they rightly know.
They agree with what was well spoken,
without criticizing what was poorly said.

They’d not persist in finding faults,
nor seize on trivial mistakes,
neither intimidating nor crushing the other,
nor would they speak with sly implications.

Good people consult
for the sake of knowledge and clarity.
That’s how the noble ones consult,
this is a noble consultation.
Knowing this, an intelligent person
would consult without arrogance.”

AN 3.70 - Uposatha

(The Buddha explains to Visakha what is to be done on an Uposatha, and how it is of great merit.)

AN 3.78 - Precepts and Observances

(Reading the Bhikkhu Bodhi translation is highly recomended, the sutta is titled “Setting Up”, it’s on page 311 in the Wisdom Publications AN. Below is the Ajahn Sujato translation:)

Then Venerable Ānanda went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to him: “Ānanda, are all precepts and observances, lifestyles, and spiritual paths fruitful when taken as the essence?” “This is no simple matter, sir.” “Well then, Ānanda, break it down.”

“Take the case of someone who cultivates precepts and observances, a lifestyle, and a spiritual path, taking this as the essence. If unskillful qualities grow while skillful qualities decline, that’s not fruitful. However, if unskillful qualities decline while skillful qualities grow, that is fruitful.” That’s what Ānanda said, and the teacher approved.

Then Ānanda, knowing that the teacher approved, got up from his seat, bowed, and respectfully circled the Buddha, keeping him on his right, before leaving. Then, not long after Ānanda had left, the Buddha addressed the mendicants: “Mendicants, Ānanda is a trainee, but it’s not easy to find his equal in wisdom.”

AN 3.87 - Training (2nd)

(Following Vinaya rules leads to attainment)

AN 3.91 - At Paṅkadhā

Kassapa, take the case of a senior mendicant who doesn’t want to train and doesn’t praise taking up the training. They don’t encourage other mendicants who don’t want to train to take up the training. And they don’t truthfully and substantively praise at the right time those mendicants who do want to train. I don’t praise that kind of senior mendicant. Why is that? Because, hearing that I praised that mendicant, other mendicants might want to keep company with them. Then they might follow their example, which would be for their lasting harm and suffering. That’s why I don’t praise that kind of senior mendicant.

Take the case of a middle mendicant who doesn’t want to train …

Take the case of a junior mendicant who doesn’t want to train … That’s why I don’t praise that kind of junior mendicant.

Kassapa, take the case of a senior mendicant who does want to train and praises taking up the training. They encourage other mendicants who don’t want to train to take up the training. And they truthfully and substantively praise at the right time those mendicants who do want to train. I praise that kind of senior mendicant. Why is that? Because, hearing that I praised that mendicant, other mendicants might want to keep company with them. Then they might follow their example, which would be for their lasting welfare and happiness. That’s why I praise that kind of senior mendicant.

Take the case of a middle mendicant who wants to train …

Take the case of a junior mendicant who wants to train … That’s why I praise that kind of junior mendicant.”

AN 3.101 - A Panner

Interesting:

(Ajahn Sujato’s translation:) “…there are fine corruptions:

  1. thoughts of family

  2. country

  3. being looked up to.

A sincere, capable mendicant gives these up, gets rid of, eliminates, and obliterates them.”

(Bhikkhu Bodhi’s translation:) “…there remain in him subtle defilements:

  1. thoughts about his relations

  2. thoughts about his country

  3. thoughts about his reputation.

An earnest, capable bhikkhu abandons, dispels, terminates, and obliterates them.”

AN 3.102 - A Goldsmith

(A rare explanation of how to apply varying levels of effort on meditation, using the simile of forging gold, by a goldsmith)

AN 4.6 - One of Little Learning

“Bhikkhus, there are these four kinds of persons found existing in the world. What four? One of little learning who is not intent on what he has learned; one of little learning who is intent on what he has learned; one of much learning who is not intent on what he has learned; and one of much learning who is intent on what he has learned.

  1. “And how is a person one of little learning who is not intent on what he has learned? Here, someone has learned little—that is, of the discourses, mixed prose and verse, expositions, verses, inspired utterances, quotations, birth stories, amazing accounts, and questions-and-answers—but he does not understand the meaning of what he has learned; he does not understand the Dhamma; and he does not practice in accordance with the Dhamma. In such a way, a person is one of little learning who is not intent on what he has learned.

  2. “And how is a person one of little learning who is intent on what he has learned? Here, someone has learned little—that is, of the discourses … questions-and-answers—but having understood the meaning of what he has learned, and having understood the Dhamma, he practices in accordance with the Dhamma. In such a way, a person is one of little learning who is intent on what he has learned.

  3. “And how is a person one of much learning who is not intent on what he has learned? Here, someone has learned much—that is, of the discourses … questions-and-answers—but he does not understand the meaning of what he has learned; he does not understand the Dhamma; and he does not practice in accordance with the Dhamma. In such a way, a person is one of much learning who is not intent on what he has learned.

  4. “And how is a person one of much learning who is intent on what he has learned? Here, someone has learned much—that is, of the discourses … questions-and-answers—and having understood the meaning of what he has learned, and having understood the Dhamma, he practices in accordance with the Dhamma. In such a way, a person is one of much learning who is intent on what he has learned.

“These, bhikkhus, are the four kinds of persons found existing in the world.”

If one has little learning
and is not settled in the virtues,
they criticize him on both counts,
virtuous behavior and learning.

If one has little learning
but is well settled in the virtues,
they praise him for his virtuous behavior;
his learning has succeeded.

If one is highly learned
but is not settled in the virtues,
they criticize him for his lack of virtue;
his learning has not succeeded.

If one is highly learned
and is settled in the virtues,
they praise him on both counts,
virtuous behavior and learning.

When a disciple of the Buddha is highly learned,
an expert on the Dhamma, endowed with wisdom,
like a coin of refined mountain gold,
who is fit to blame him?
Even the devas praise such a one;
by Brahmā too he is praised.

AN 4.7 - They Adorn

(A rare sutta praising monks with scholarly ability to learn and uphold the teachings)

AN 4.14 - Restraint

(The Four Strivings: Striving by restraint, striving by abandonment, striving by development, and striving by protection)

AN 4.25 - The Spiritual Life

“Bhikkhus, this spiritual life is not lived for the sake of deceiving people and cajoling them; nor for the benefit of gain, honor, and praise; nor for the benefit of winning in debates; nor with the thought: ‘Let the people know me thus.’ But rather, this spiritual life is lived for the sake of restraint, abandoning, dispassion, and cessation.”

The Blessed One taught the spiritual life,
not based on tradition, culminating in nibbāna,
lived for the sake of
restraint and abandoning.

This is the path of the great beings,
the path followed by the great seers.
Those who practice it
as taught by the Buddha,
acting upon the Teacher’s guidance,
will make an end of suffering.

AN 4.40 - Udāyī

Then the brahmin Udāyī approached the Blessed One … and said to him:

The prose portion is identical with that of 4.39.

When a sacrifice is timely and allowable, well prepared and nonviolent, the self-controlled followers of the spiritual life attend such a sacrifice as this.

Those in the world who have removed the coverings, transcenders of time and destination, the Buddhas who are proficient in sacrifice, praise this kind of sacrifice.

Having prepared an appropriate gift, whether of the ordinary kind or in memory of the dead, one makes the sacrifice with a confident mind to a fertile field, to followers of the spiritual life.

When what has been properly obtained is properly offered, properly sacrificed, to those worthy of offerings, the sacrifice is vast and the deities are pleased.

The wise person endowed with faith, having sacrificed thus with a generous mind, is reborn in a happy world, in a realm without affliction.

AN 4.41 - Concentration

(This sutta is best read in the Wisdom Publications AN [page 431])

AN 4.83 - Where Criticism Takes You

“Mendicants, someone with four qualities is cast down to hell. What four? Without examining or scrutinizing, they praise those deserving of criticism, and they criticize those deserving of praise. They arouse faith in things that are dubious, and they don’t arouse faith in things that are inspiring. Someone with these four qualities is cast down to hell.

Someone with four qualities is raised up to heaven. What four? After examining and scrutinizing, they criticize those deserving of criticism, and they praise those deserving of praise. They don’t arouse faith in things that are dubious, and they do arouse faith in things that are inspiring. Someone with these four qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 4.84 - Valuing Anger

“Mendicants, someone with four qualities is cast down to hell. What four? They value anger, or denigration, or material possessions, or honor rather than the true teaching. Someone with these four qualities is cast down to hell.

Someone with four qualities is raised up to heaven. What four? They value the true teaching rather than anger, or denigration, or material possessions, or honor. Someone with these four qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 4.95 - A Firebrand

(Note: rare proof that the controversial 7-day allowable called “navanītaṃ” can’t be cheese, but rather must be butter. You can’t get ghee from cheese, but you can get ghee from butter.)

“Mendicants, these four people are found in the world. What four?

One who practices to benefit neither themselves nor others; one who practices to benefit others, but not themselves; one who practices to benefit themselves, but not others; and one who practices to benefit both themselves and others. Suppose there was a firebrand for lighting a funeral pyre, burning at both ends, and smeared with dung in the middle. It couldn’t be used as timber either in the village or the wilderness. The person who practices to benefit neither themselves nor others is like this, I say.

The person who practices to benefit others, but not themselves, is better than that. The person who practices to benefit themselves, but not others, is better than both of those. But the person who practices to benefit both themselves and others is the foremost, best, chief, highest, and finest of the four.

From a cow comes milk, from milk comes curds, from curds come butter, from butter comes ghee, and from ghee comes cream of ghee. And the cream of ghee is said to be the best of these. In the same way, the person who practices to benefit both themselves and others is the foremost, best, chief, highest, and finest of the four.

These are the four people found in the world.”

AN 4.100 - With Potaliya the Wanderer

Then the wanderer Potaliya went up to the Buddha, and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, he sat down to one side, and the Buddha said to him:

“Potaliya, these four people are found in the world. What four?

One person criticizes those deserving of criticism at the right time, truthfully and substantively. But they don’t praise those deserving of praise at the right time, truthfully and substantively.

Another person praises those deserving of praise … But they don’t criticize those deserving of criticism …

Another person doesn’t praise those deserving of praise … Nor do they criticize those deserving of criticism …

Another person criticizes those deserving of criticism at the right time, truthfully and substantively. And they praise those deserving of praise at the right time, truthfully and substantively.

These are the four people found in the world. Of these four people, who do you believe to be the finest?”

“Master Gotama, of these four people, it is the person who neither praises those deserving of praise at the right time, truthfully and substantively; nor criticizes those deserving of criticism at the right time, truthfully and substantively. That is the person I believe to be the finest. Why is that? Because, Master Gotama, equanimity is the best.”

“Potaliya, of these four people, it is the person who criticizes those deserving of criticism at the right time, truthfully and substantively; and praises those deserving of praise at the right time, truthfully and substantively. That is the person I consider to be the finest. Why is that? Because, Potaliya, understanding of time and context is the best.”

“Master Gotama, of these four people, it is the person who criticizes those deserving of criticism at the right time, truthfully and substantively; and praises those deserving of praise at the right time, truthfully and substantively. That is the person I believe to be the finest. Why is that? Because, Master Gotama, understanding of time and context is the best.

Excellent, Master Gotama! Excellent! As if he were righting the overturned, or revealing the hidden, or pointing out the path to the lost, or lighting a lamp in the dark so people with good eyes can see what’s there, Master Gotama has made the teaching clear in many ways. I go for refuge to Master Gotama, to the teaching, and to the mendicant Saṅgha. From this day forth, may Master Gotama remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge for life.”

AN 4.104 - Lakes

(The Buddhist version of “don’t judge a book by its cover”)

AN 4.105 - Mangoes

(Another, more elaborate take on “don’t judge a book by its cover”)

AN 4.115 - Things

“Mendicants, there are these four things. What four?

There is a thing that’s unpleasant to do, and doing it proves harmful. There is a thing that’s unpleasant to do, but doing it proves beneficial. There is a thing that’s pleasant to do, but doing it proves harmful. There is a thing that’s pleasant to do, and doing it proves beneficial.

Take the thing that’s unpleasant to do, and doing it proves harmful. This is regarded as a thing that shouldn’t be done on both grounds: because it’s unpleasant, and because doing it proves harmful. This is regarded as a thing that shouldn’t be done on both grounds.

Next, take the thing that’s unpleasant to do, but doing it proves beneficial. It is here that you can tell who is foolish and who is astute in regard to manly strength, energy, and vigor. A fool doesn’t reflect: ‘Despite the fact that this thing is unpleasant to do, doing it still proves beneficial.’ They don’t do that thing, so that proves harmful. An astute person does reflect: ‘Despite the fact that this thing is unpleasant to do, doing it still proves beneficial.’ They do that thing, so that proves beneficial.

Next, take the thing that’s pleasant to do, but doing it proves harmful. It is here that you can tell who is foolish and who is astute in regard to manly strength, energy, and vigor. A fool doesn’t reflect: ‘Despite the fact that this thing is pleasant to do, doing it still proves harmful.’ They do that thing, and so that proves harmful. An astute person does reflect: ‘Despite the fact that this thing is pleasant to do, doing it still proves harmful.’ They don’t do that thing, so that proves beneficial.

Next, take the thing that’s pleasant to do, and doing it proves beneficial. This is regarded as a thing that should be done on both grounds: because it’s pleasant, and because doing it proves beneficial. This is regarded as a thing that should be done on both grounds.

These are the four things.”

AN 4.139 - Dhamma Speakers

“Mendicants, there are these four Dhamma speakers. What four?

One Dhamma speaker speaks little and off topic. And their assembly can’t tell what’s on topic and what’s off topic. Such an assembly regards such a Dhamma speaker simply as a Dhamma speaker.

One Dhamma speaker speaks little but stays on topic. And their assembly can tell what’s on topic and what’s off topic. Such an assembly regards such a Dhamma speaker simply as a Dhamma speaker.

One Dhamma speaker speaks much but off topic. And their assembly can’t tell what’s on topic and what’s off topic. Such an assembly regards such a Dhamma speaker simply as a Dhamma speaker.

One Dhamma speaker speaks much and stays on topic. And their assembly can tell what’s on topic and what’s off topic. Such an assembly regards such a Dhamma speaker simply as a Dhamma speaker.

These are the four Dhamma speakers.”

AN 4.160 - The Training of a Holy One

“Mendicants, a Holy One or a Holy One’s training remain in the world for the welfare and happiness of the people, out of compassion for the world, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans.

And who is a Holy One? It’s when a Realized One arises in the world, perfected, a fully awakened Buddha, accomplished in knowledge and conduct, holy, knower of the world, supreme guide for those who wish to train, teacher of gods and humans, awakened, blessed. This is a Holy One.

And what is the training of a Holy One? He teaches Dhamma that’s good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased. And he reveals a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. This is the training of a Holy One. This is how a Holy One or a Holy One’s training remain in the world for the welfare and happiness of the people, out of compassion for the world, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans.

These four things lead to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching. What four?

Firstly, the mendicants memorize discourses that they learned incorrectly, with misplaced words and phrases. When the words and phrases are misplaced, the meaning is misinterpreted. This is the first thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the mendicants are hard to admonish, having qualities that make them hard to admonish. They’re impatient, and don’t take instruction respectfully. This is the second thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the mendicants who are very learned—knowledgeable in the scriptures, who have memorized the teachings, the monastic law, and the outlines—don’t carefully make others recite the discourses. When they pass away, the discourses are cut off at the root, with no-one to preserve them. This is the third thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the senior mendicants are indulgent and slack, leaders in backsliding, neglecting seclusion, not rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. Those who come after them follow their example. They too become indulgent and slack, leaders in backsliding, neglecting seclusion, not rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. This is the fourth thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

These are four things that lead to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

These four things lead to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching. What four?

Firstly, the mendicants memorize discourses that have been learned correctly, with well placed words and phrases. When the words and phrases are well placed, the meaning is interpreted correctly. This is the first thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the mendicants are easy to admonish, having qualities that make them easy to admonish. They’re patient, and take instruction respectfully. This is the second thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the mendicants who are very learned—knowledgeable in the scriptures, who have memorized the teachings, the monastic law, and the outlines—carefully make others recite the discourses. When they pass away, the discourses aren’t cut off at the root, and they have someone to preserve them. This is the third thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the senior mendicants are not indulgent or slack, nor are they backsliders; instead, they take the lead in seclusion, rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. Those who come after them follow their example. They too aren’t indulgent or slack … This is the fourth thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.

These are four things that lead to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.”

AN 4.177 - With Rāhula

Then Venerable Rāhula went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to him:

“Rāhula, the interior earth element and the exterior earth element are just the earth element. This should be truly seen with right understanding like this: ‘This is not mine, I am not this, this is not my self.’ When you truly see with right understanding, you reject the earth element, detaching the mind from the earth element.

The interior water element and the exterior water element are just the water element. This should be truly seen with right understanding like this: ‘This is not mine, I am not this, this is not my self.’ When you truly see with right understanding, you reject the water element, detaching the mind from the water element.

The interior fire element and the exterior fire element are just the fire element. This should be truly seen with right understanding like this: ‘This is not mine, I am not this, this is not my self.’ When you truly see with right understanding, you reject the fire element, detaching the mind from the fire element.

The interior air element and the exterior air element are just the air element. This should be truly seen with right understanding like this: ‘This is not mine, I am not this, this is not my self.’ When you truly see with right understanding, you reject the air element, detaching the mind from the air element.

When a mendicant sees these four elements as neither self nor belonging to self, they’re called a mendicant who has cut off craving, untied the fetters, and by rightly comprehending conceit has made an end of suffering.”

AN 4.180 - The Four Great References

(Anti-corruption protections)

At one time the Buddha was staying near the city of Bhoga, at the Ānanda Tree-shrine.

There the Buddha addressed the mendicants, “Mendicants!”

“Venerable sir,” they replied.

The Buddha said this: “Mendicants, I will teach you the four great references. Listen and pay close attention, I will speak.”

“Yes, sir,” they replied. The Buddha said this:

“Mendicants, what are the four great references?

Take a mendicant who says: ‘Reverend, I have heard and learned this in the presence of the Buddha: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training. If they’re not included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is not the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been incorrectly memorized by that mendicant.’ And so you should reject it.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘Reverend, I have heard and learned this in the presence of the Buddha: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training. If they are included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been correctly memorized by that mendicant.’ You should remember it. This is the first great reference.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘In such-and-such monastery lives a Saṅgha with seniors and leaders. I’ve heard and learned this in the presence of that Saṅgha: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses or found in the texts on monastic training. If they’re not included in the discourses or found in the texts on monastic training, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is not the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been incorrectly memorized by that Saṅgha.’ And so you should reject it.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘In such-and-such monastery lives a Saṅgha with seniors and leaders. I’ve heard and learned this in the presence of that Saṅgha: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses or found in the texts on monastic training. If they are included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been correctly memorized by that Saṅgha.’ You should remember it. This is the second great reference.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘In such-and-such monastery there are several senior mendicants who are very learned, knowledgeable in the scriptures, who remember the teachings, the texts on monastic training, and the outlines. I’ve heard and learned this in the presence of those senior mendicants: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses or found in the texts on monastic training. If they’re not included in the discourses or found in the monastic law, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is not the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been incorrectly memorized by those senior mendicants.’ And so you should reject it.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘In such-and-such monastery there are several senior mendicants who are very learned, knowledgeable in the scriptures, who remember the teachings, the texts on monastic training, and the outlines. I’ve heard and learned this in the presence of those senior mendicants: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training. If they are included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic training, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been correctly memorized by those senior mendicants.’ You should remember it. This is the third great reference.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘In such-and-such monastery there is a single senior mendicant who is very learned and knowledgeable in the scriptures, who has memorized the teachings, the texts on monastic discipline, and the outlines. I’ve heard and learned this in the presence of that senior mendicant: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic discipline. If they’re not included in the discourses or found in the texts on monastic discipline, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is not the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been incorrectly memorized by that senior mendicant.’ And so you should reject it.

Take another mendicant who says: ‘In such-and-such monastery there is a single senior mendicant who is very learned and knowledgeable in the scriptures, who has memorized the teachings, the texts on monastic discipline, and the outlines. I’ve heard and learned this in the presence of that senior mendicant: this is the teaching, this is the training, this is the Teacher’s instruction.’ You should neither approve nor dismiss that mendicant’s statement. Instead, you should carefully memorize those words and phrases, then check if they’re included in the discourses and found in the texts on monastic discipline. If they are included in the discourses and found in the monastic law, you should draw the conclusion: ‘Clearly this is the word of the Blessed One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. It has been correctly memorized by that senior mendicant.’ You should remember it. This is the fourth great reference.

These are the four great references.”

AN 4.189 - Things to be Realized

“Mendicants, these four things should be realized. What four?

There are things to be realized directly. There are things to be realized with mindfulness. There are things to be realized with vision. There are things to be realized with wisdom.

What things are to be realized directly? The eight liberations.

What things are to be realized with mindfulness? Past lives.

What things are to be realized with vision? The passing away and rebirth of sentient beings.

What things are to be realized with wisdom? The ending of defilements.

These are the four things to be realized.”

AN 4.192 - Traits

“Monks, these four traits may be known by means of four [other] traits. Which four?

“It’s through living together that a person’s virtue may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning.

“It’s through dealing with a person that his purity may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning.

“It’s through adversity that a person’s endurance may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning.

“It’s through discussion that a person’s discernment may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning.

  1. “‘It’s through living together that a person’s virtue may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said?

    “There is the case where one individual, through living with another, knows this: ‘For a long time this person has been torn, broken, spotted, splattered in his actions. He hasn’t been consistent in his actions. He hasn’t practiced consistently with regard to the precepts. He is an unprincipled person, not a virtuous, principled one.’ And then there is the case where one individual, through living with another, knows this: ‘For a long time this person has been untorn, unbroken, unspotted, unsplattered in his actions. He has been consistent in his actions. He has practiced consistently with regard to the precepts. He is a virtuous, principled person, not an unprincipled one.’

    “‘It’s through living together that a person’s virtue may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

  2. “‘It’s through dealing with a person that his purity may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said?

    “There is the case where one individual, through dealing with another, knows this: ‘This person deals one way when one-on-one, another way when with two, another way when with three, another way when with many. His earlier dealings do not jibe with his later dealings. He is impure in his dealings, not pure.’ And then there is the case where one individual, through dealing with another, knows this: ‘The way this person deals when one-on-one, is the same way he deals when with two, when with three, when with many. His earlier dealings jibe with his later dealings. He is pure in his dealings, not impure.’

    “‘It’s through dealing with a person that his purity may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

  3. “‘It’s through adversity that a person’s endurance may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said?

    “There is the case where a person, suffering loss of relatives, loss of wealth, or loss through disease, does not reflect: ‘That’s how it is when living together in the world. That’s how it is when gaining a personal identity. When there is living in the world, when there is the gaining of a personal identity, these eight worldly conditions spin after the world, and the world spins after these eight worldly conditions: gain, loss, status, disgrace, censure, praise, pleasure, & pain.’ Suffering loss of relatives, loss of wealth, or loss through disease, he sorrows, grieves, & laments, beats his breast, becomes distraught. And then there is the case where a person, suffering loss of relatives, loss of wealth, or loss through disease, reflects: ‘That’s how it is when living together in the world. That’s how it is when gaining a personal identity. When there is living in the world, when there is the gaining of a personal identity, these eight worldly conditions spin after the world, and the world spins after these eight worldly conditions: gain, loss, status, disgrace, censure, praise, pleasure, & pain.’ Suffering loss of relatives, loss of wealth, or loss through disease, he does not sorrow, grieve, or lament, does not beat his breast or become distraught.

    “‘It’s through adversity that a person’s endurance may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

  4. “‘It’s through discussion that a person’s discernment may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to what was it said?

    “There is the case where one individual, through discussion with another, knows this: ‘From the way this person rises to an issue, from the way he applies [his reasoning], from the way he addresses a question, he is dull, not discerning. Why is that? He does not make statements that are deep, tranquil, refined, beyond the scope of conjecture, subtle, to-be-experienced by the wise. He cannot declare the meaning, teach it, describe it, set it forth, reveal it, explain it, or make it plain. He is dull, not discerning.’ Just as if a man with good eyesight standing on the shore of a body of water were to see a small fish rise. The thought would occur to him, ‘From the rise of this fish, from the break of its ripples, from its speed, it is a small fish, not a large one.’ In the same way, one individual, in discussion with another, knows this: ‘From the way this person rises to an issue, from the way he applies [his reasoning], from the way he addresses a question… he is dull, not discerning.’

    “And then there is the case where one individual, through discussion with another, knows this: ‘From the way this person rises to an issue, from the way he applies [his reasoning], from the way he addresses a question, he is discerning, not dull. Why is that? He makes statements that are deep, tranquil, refined, beyond the scope of conjecture, subtle, to-be-experienced by the wise. He can declare the meaning, teach it, describe it, set it forth, reveal it, explain it, & make it plain. He is discerning, not dull.’ Just as if a man with good eyesight standing on the shore of a body of water were to see a large fish rise. The thought would occur to him, ‘From the rise of this fish, from the break of its ripples, from its speed, it is a large fish, not a small one.’ In the same way, one individual, in discussion with another, knows this: ‘From the way this person rises to an issue, from the way he applies [his reasoning], from the way he addresses a question… he is discerning, not dull.’

    “‘It’s through discussion that a person’s discernment may be known, and then only after a long period, not a short period; by one who is attentive, not by one who is inattentive; by one who is discerning, not by one who is not discerning’: Thus was it said. And in reference to this was it said.

“These, monks, are the four traits that may be known by means of these four [other] traits.”

AN 4.195 - With Vappa

At one time the Buddha was staying in the land of the Sakyans, near Kapilavatthu in the Banyan Tree Monastery. Then Vappa of the Sakyans, a disciple of the Jains, went up to Venerable Mahāmoggallāna, bowed, and sat down to one side. Mahāmoggallāna said to him:

“Vappa, take a person who is restrained in body, speech, and mind. When ignorance fades away and knowledge arises, do you see any reason why defilements giving rise to painful feelings would defile that person in the next life?”

“Sir, I do see such a case. Take a person who did bad deeds in a past life. But the result of that has not yet ripened. For this reason defilements giving rise to painful feelings would defile that person in the next life.” But this conversation between Mahāmoggallāna and Vappa was left unfinished.

Then in the late afternoon, the Buddha came out of retreat and went to the assembly hall. He sat down on the seat spread out, and said to Mahāmoggallāna, “Moggallāna, what were you sitting talking about just now? What conversation was unfinished?”

Moggallāna repeated the entire conversation to the Buddha, and concluded: “This was my conversation with Vappa that was unfinished when the Buddha arrived.”

Then the Buddha said to Vappa, “Vappa, we can discuss this. But only if you allow what should be allowed, and reject what should be rejected. And if you ask me the meaning of anything you don’t understand, saying: ‘Sir, why is this? What’s the meaning of that?’”

“Sir, let us discuss this. I will do as you say.”

“What do you think, Vappa? There are distressing and feverish defilements that arise because of undertaking bodily activity. These don’t occur in someone who avoids such bodily activity. They don’t perform any new deeds, and old deeds are eliminated by experiencing their results little by little. This wearing away is visible in this very life, immediately effective, inviting inspection, relevant, so that sensible people can know it for themselves. Do you see any reason why defilements giving rise to painful feelings would defile that person in the next life?”

“No, sir.”

“What do you think, Vappa? There are distressing and feverish defilements that arise because of undertaking verbal activity. These don’t occur in someone who avoids such verbal activity. They don’t perform any new deeds, and old deeds are eliminated by experiencing their results little by little. This wearing away is visible in this very life, immediately effective, inviting inspection, relevant, so that sensible people can know it for themselves. Do you see any reason why defilements giving rise to painful feelings would defile that person in the next life?”

“No, sir.”

“What do you think, Vappa? There are distressing and feverish defilements that arise because of undertaking mental activity. These don’t occur in someone who avoids such mental activity. They don’t perform any new deeds, and old deeds are eliminated by experiencing their results little by little. This wearing away is visible in this very life, immediately effective, inviting inspection, relevant, so that sensible people can know it for themselves. Do you see any reason why defilements giving rise to painful feelings would defile that person in the next life?”

“No, sir.”

“What do you think, Vappa? There are distressing and feverish defilements that arise because of ignorance. These don’t occur when ignorance fades away and knowledge arises. They don’t perform any new deeds, and old deeds are eliminated by experiencing their results little by little. This wearing away is visible in this very life, immediately effective, inviting inspection, relevant, so that sensible people can know it for themselves. Do you see any reason why defilements giving rise to painful feelings would defile that person in the next life?”

“No, sir.”

“A mendicant whose mind is rightly freed like this has achieved six consistent responses. Seeing a sight with the eye, they’re neither happy nor sad, but remain equanimous, mindful and aware. Hearing a sound with the ears … Smelling an odor with the nose … Tasting a flavor with the tongue … Feeling a touch with the body … Knowing a thought with the mind, they’re neither happy nor sad, but remain equanimous, mindful and aware. Feeling the end of the body approaching, they understand: ‘I feel the end of the body approaching.’ Feeling the end of life approaching, they understand: ‘I feel the end of life approaching.’ They understand: ‘When my body breaks up and my life has come to an end, everything that’s felt, being no longer relished, will become cool right here.’

Suppose there was a shadow cast by a sacrificial post. Then along comes a person with a spade and basket. They cut down the sacrificial post at its base, dig it up, and pull it out by its roots, right down to the fibers and stems. Then they split it apart, cut up the parts, and chop them into splinters. Next they dry the splinters in the wind and sun, burn them with fire, and reduce them to ashes. Then they sweep away the ashes in a strong wind, or float them away down a swift stream. And so the shadow cast by the post is cut off at the root, made like a palm stump, obliterated, and unable to arise in the future.

In the same way, a mendicant whose mind is rightly freed like this has achieved six consistent responses. Seeing a sight with the eye, they’re neither happy nor sad, but remain equanimous, mindful and aware. Hearing a sound with the ears … Smelling an odor with the nose … Tasting a flavor with the tongue … Feeling a touch with the body … Knowing a thought with the mind, they’re neither happy nor sad, but remain equanimous, mindful and aware. Feeling the end of the body approaching, they understand: ‘I feel the end of the body approaching.’ Feeling the end of life approaching, they understand: ‘I feel the end of life approaching.’ They understand: ‘When my body breaks up and my life has come to an end, everything that’s felt, being no longer relished, will become cool right here.’”

When he said this, Vappa the Sakyan, the disciple of the Jains, said to the Buddha:

“Sir, suppose there was a man who raised commercial horses for profit. But he never made any profit, and instead just got weary and frustrated. In the same way, I paid homage to those Jain fools for profit. But I never made any profit, and instead just got weary and frustrated. From this day forth, any confidence I had in those Jain fools I sweep away as in a strong wind, or float away as down a swift stream.

Excellent, sir! … From this day forth, may the Buddha remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge for life.”

AN 5.15 - To be Seen

“Bhikkhus, there are these five powers. What five? The power of faith, the power of energy, the power of mindfulness, the power of concentration, and the power of wisdom.

  1. “And where, bhikkhus, is the power of faith to be seen? The power of faith is to be seen in the four factors of stream-entry.

  2. And where is the power of energy to be seen? The power of energy is to be seen in the four right strivings.

  3. And where is the power of mindfulness to be seen? The power of mindfulness is to be seen in the four establishments of mindfulness.

  4. And where is the power of concentration to be seen? The power of concentration is to be seen in the four jhānas.

  5. And where is the power of wisdom to be seen? The power of wisdom is to be seen in the four noble truths.

“These, bhikkhus, are the five powers.”

AN 5.81 - Desirable

“Mendicants, a senior mendicant with five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired. What five? They desire the desirable, they hate the hateful, they’re deluded by the delusory, they’re annoyed by the annoying, and they’re intoxicated by the intoxicating. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is unlikable and unlovable by their spiritual companions, not respected or admired.

A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five? They don’t desire the desirable, they don’t hate the hateful, they’re not deluded by the delusory, they’re not annoyed by the annoying, and they’re not intoxicated by the intoxicating. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.82 - Free of Greed

“Mendicants, a senior mendicant with five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired. What five? They’re not free of greed, hate, and delusion; they are offensive and contemptuous. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired.

A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five? They’re free of greed, hate, and delusion; they’re not offensive and contemptuous. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.83 - Deceiver

“Mendicants, a senior mendicant with five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired. What five? They use deceit, flattery, hinting, and belittling, and they use material possessions to pursue other material possessions. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired.

A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five? They don’t use deceit, flattery, hinting, or belittling, and they don’t use material possessions to pursue other material possessions. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.84 - Faithless

“Mendicants, a senior mendicant with five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired. What five? They’re faithless, shameless, imprudent, lazy, and witless. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired.

A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five? They’re faithful, conscientious, prudent, energetic, and wise. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.85 - Cannot Endure

“Mendicants, a senior mendicant with five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired. What five? They can’t endure sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and touches. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is unlikable and unlovable to their spiritual companions, not respected or admired.

A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five? They can endure sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and touches. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.86 - Attaining the Methods of Textual Analysis

“A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five? They have attained the textual analysis of meaning, text, terminology, and eloquence. And they are skilled and tireless in a diverse spectrum of duties for their spiritual companions, understanding how to go about things in order to complete and organize the work. A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.87 - Ethical

“A senior mendicant with five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired. What five?

They’re ethical, restrained in the monastic code, conducting themselves well and seeking alms in suitable places. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken.

They’re very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and comprehending them theoretically.

They’re a good speaker, with a polished, clear, and articulate voice that expresses the meaning.

They get the four absorptions—blissful meditations in the present life that belong to the higher mind—when they want, without trouble or difficulty.

They realize the undefiled freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom in this very life. And they live having realized it with their own insight due to the ending of defilements.

A senior mendicant with these five qualities is dear and beloved to their spiritual companions, respected and admired.”

AN 5.88 - Senior Mendicants

“Mendicants, a senior mendicant who has five qualities is acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans.

What five?

They are senior and have long gone forth.

They’re well-known, famous, with a large following that includes both laypeople and renunciates.

They receive robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick.

They’re very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and understanding them with view.

But they have wrong view and distorted perspective. They draw many people away from the true teaching and establish them in false teachings.

People follow their example, thinking that the senior mendicant is senior and has long gone forth. Or that they’re well-known, famous, with a large following that includes both laypeople and renunciates. Or that they receive robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. Or that they’re very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. A senior mendicant who has these five qualities is acting for the hurt and unhappiness of the people, for the harm, hurt, and suffering of gods and humans.

A senior mendicant who has five qualities is acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans.

What five?

They are senior and have long gone forth.

They’re well-known, famous, with a large following, including both laypeople and renunciates.

They receive robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick.

They’re very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and comprehending them theoretically.

And they have right view and an undistorted perspective. They draw many people away from false teachings and establish them in the true teaching.

People follow their example, thinking that the senior mendicant is senior and has long gone forth. Or that they’re well-known, famous, with a large following that includes both laypeople and renunciates. Or that they receive robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. Or that they’re very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. A senior mendicant who has these five qualities is acting for the welfare and happiness of the people, for the benefit, welfare, and happiness of gods and humans.”

AN 5.89 - A Trainee (1st)

“These five things lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee. What five? They relish work, talk, sleep, and company. And they don’t review the extent of their mind’s freedom. These five things lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee. What five? They don’t relish work, talk, sleep, and company. And they review the extent of their mind’s freedom. These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.”

AN 5.90 - A Trainee (2nd)

“These five things lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee. What five?

Firstly, a mendicant trainee has many duties and responsibilities, and is competent in many tasks. They neglect retreat, and are not committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the first thing that leads to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee spends their day doing trivial work. They neglect retreat, and are not committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the second thing that leads to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee mixes closely with laypeople and renunciates, socializing inappropriately like a layperson. They neglect retreat, and are not committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the third thing that leads to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee enters the town at the wrong time, and returns too late in the day. They neglect retreat, and are not committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the fourth thing that leads to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee doesn’t get to take part in talk about self-effacement that helps open the heart, when they want, without trouble or difficulty. That is, talk about fewness of wishes, contentment, seclusion, aloofness, arousing energy, ethics, immersion, wisdom, freedom, and the knowledge and vision of freedom. They neglect retreat, and are not committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the fifth thing that leads to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

These five things lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee. What five?

Firstly, a mendicant trainee doesn’t have many duties and responsibilities, even though they are competent in many tasks. They don’t neglect retreat, and are committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the first thing that doesn’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee doesn’t spend their day doing trivial work. They don’t neglect retreat, and are committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the second thing that doesn’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee doesn’t mix closely with laypeople and renunciates, socializing inappropriately like a layperson. They don’t neglect retreat, and are committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the third thing that doesn’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee doesn’t enter the village too early or return too late in the day. They don’t neglect retreat, and are committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the fourth thing that doesn’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

Furthermore, a mendicant trainee gets to take part in talk about self-effacement that helps open the heart, when they want, without trouble or difficulty. That is, talk about fewness of wishes, contentment, seclusion, aloofness, arousing energy, ethics, immersion, wisdom, freedom, and the knowledge and vision of freedom. They don’t neglect retreat, and are committed to internal serenity of heart. This is the fifth thing that doesn’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.

These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant trainee.”

AN 5.99 - The Lion

“Mendicants, towards evening the lion, king of beasts, emerges from his den, yawns, looks all around the four directions, and roars his lion’s roar three times. Then he sets out on the hunt. If he strikes an elephant, he does it carefully, not carelessly. If he strikes a buffalo … a cow … a leopard … or any smaller creatures—even a hare or a cat—he does it carefully, not carelessly. Why is that? Thinking: ‘May I not lose my way.’

‘Lion’ is a term for the Realized One, the perfected one, the fully awakened Buddha. When the Realized One teaches Dhamma to an assembly, this is his lion’s roar. When the Realized One teaches the monks … nuns … laymen … laywomen … or ordinary people—even food-carriers and hunters—he teaches them carefully, not carelessly. Why is that? Because the Realized One has respect and reverence for the teaching.”

AN 5.100 - With Kakudha

So i have heard. At one time the Buddha was staying near Kosambi, in Ghosita’s Monastery.

At that time the Koliyan named Kakudha—Venerable Mahāmoggallāna’s attendant—had recently passed away and been reborn in a certain host of mind-made gods. He was reincarnated in a life-form that was two or three times the size of a Magadhan village with its fields. But with that life-form he didn’t obstruct himself or others.

Then the god Kakudha went up to Venerable Mahāmoggallāna, bowed, stood to one side. and said to him, “Sir, this fixed desire arose in Devadatta: ‘I will lead the mendicant Saṅgha.’ And as that thought arose, Devadatta lost that psychic power.”

That’s what the god Kakudha said. Then he bowed and respectfully circled Mahāmoggallāna, keeping him on his right side, before vanishing right there.

Then Mahāmoggallāna went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and told him what had happened.

“But Moggallāna, did you comprehend the god Kakudha’s mind, and know that everything he says is correct and not otherwise?”

“Indeed I did, sir.”

“Mark these words, Moggallāna! Mark these words! Now that silly man Devadatta will expose himself by his own deeds.

Moggallāna, there are these five teachers found in the world. What five?

Firstly, some teacher with impure conduct claims: ‘I am pure in ethics. My ethical conduct is pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ But their disciples know: ‘This teacher has impure ethical conduct, but claims to be ethically pure. They wouldn’t like it if we were to tell the laypeople. And how could we treat them in a way that they don’t like? But they consent to robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. A person will be recognized by their own deeds.’ The disciples of such a teacher cover up their teacher’s conduct, and the teacher expects them to do so.

Furthermore, some teacher with impure livelihood claims: ‘I am pure in livelihood. My livelihood is pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ But their disciples know: ‘This teacher has impure livelihood, but claims to have pure livelihood. They wouldn’t like it if we were to tell the laypeople. And how could we treat them in a way that they don’t like? But they consent to robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. A person will be recognized by their own deeds.’ The disciples of such a teacher cover up their teacher’s livelihood, and the teacher expects them to do so.

Furthermore, some teacher with impure teaching claims: ‘I am pure in teaching. My teaching is pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ But their disciples know: ‘This teacher has impure teaching, but claims to have pure teaching. They wouldn’t like it if we were to tell the laypeople. And how could we treat them in a way that they don’t like? But they consent to robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. A person will be recognized by their own deeds.’ The disciples of such a teacher cover up their teacher’s teaching, and the teacher expects them to do so.

Furthermore, some teacher with impure answers claims: ‘I am pure in how I answer. My answers are pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ But their disciples know: ‘This teacher has impure answers, but claims to have pure answers. They wouldn’t like it if we were to tell the laypeople. And how could we treat them in a way that they don’t like? But they consent to robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. A person will be recognized by their own deeds.’ The disciples of such a teacher cover up their teacher’s answers, and the teacher expects them to do so.

Furthermore, some teacher with impure knowledge and vision claims: ‘I am pure in knowledge and vision. My knowledge and vision are pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ But their disciples know: ‘This teacher has impure knowledge and vision, but claims to have pure knowledge and vision. They wouldn’t like it if we were to tell the laypeople. And how could we treat them in a way that they don’t like? But they consent to robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. A person will be recognized by their own deeds.’ The disciples of such a teacher cover up their teacher’s knowledge and vision, and the teacher expects them to do so. These are the five teachers found in the world.

But Moggallāna, I have pure ethical conduct, and I claim: ‘I am pure in ethical conduct. My ethical conduct is pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ My disciples don’t cover up my conduct, and I don’t expect them to. I have pure livelihood, and I claim: ‘I am pure in livelihood. My livelihood is pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ My disciples don’t cover up my livelihood, and I don’t expect them to. I have pure teaching, and I claim: ‘I am pure in teaching. My teaching is pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ My disciples don’t cover up my teaching, and I don’t expect them to. I have pure answers, and I claim: ‘I am pure in how I answer. My answers are pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ My disciples don’t cover up my answers, and I don’t expect them to. I have pure knowledge and vision, and I claim: ‘I am pure in knowledge and vision. My knowledge and vision are pure, bright, uncorrupted.’ My disciples don’t cover up my knowledge and vision, and I don’t expect them to.”

AN 5.103 - A Master Thief

(Five types of evil bhikkhus who are like master thieves. Also see AN 3.50)

AN 5.106 - With Ānanda

At one time the Buddha was staying near Kosambi, in Ghosita’s Monastery.

Then Venerable Ānanda went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him, “Sir, how could a mendicant live comfortably while staying in a monastic community?”

“It’s when a mendicant is accomplished in their own ethical conduct, but they don’t motivate others to be ethical. That’s how a mendicant could live comfortably while staying in a monastic community.”

“But sir, could there be another way for a mendicant to live comfortably while staying in a monastic community?”

“There could, Ānanda. It’s when a mendicant is accomplished in their own ethical conduct, but they don’t motivate others to be ethical. And they watch themselves, but don’t watch others. That’s how a mendicant could live comfortably while staying in a monastic community.”

“But sir, could there be another way for a mendicant to live comfortably while staying in a monastic community?”

“There could, Ānanda. It’s when a mendicant is accomplished in their own ethical conduct, but they don’t motivate others to be ethical. And they watch themselves, but don’t watch others. And they’re not well-known, but aren’t bothered by that. That’s how a mendicant could live comfortably while staying in a monastic community.”

“But sir, could there be another way for a mendicant to live comfortably while staying in a monastic community?”

“There could, Ānanda. It’s when a mendicant is accomplished in their own ethical conduct, but they don’t motivate others to be ethical. And they watch themselves, but don’t watch others. And they’re not well-known, but aren’t bothered by that. And they get the four absorptions—blissful meditations in the present life that belong to the higher mind—when they want, without trouble or difficulty. That’s how a mendicant could live comfortably while staying in a monastic community.”

“But sir, might there be another way for a mendicant to live comfortably while staying in a monastic community?”

“There could, Ānanda. It’s when a mendicant is accomplished in their own ethical conduct, but they don’t motivate others to be ethical. And they watch themselves, but don’t watch others. And they’re not well-known, but aren’t bothered by that. And they get the four absorptions—blissful meditations in the present life that belong to the higher mind—when they want, without trouble or difficulty. And they realize the undefiled freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom in this very life. And they live having realized it with their own insight due to the ending of defilements. That’s how a mendicant could live comfortably while staying in a monastic community.

And I say that there is no better or finer way of living comfortably than this.”

AN 5.115 - Stingy

“Mendicants, a nun with five qualities is cast down to hell. What five? She is stingy with dwellings, families, material possessions, praise, and the teaching. A nun with these five qualities is cast down to hell.

A nun with five qualities is raised up to heaven. What five? She is not stingy with dwellings, families, material possessions, praise, or the teaching. A nun with these five qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 5.116 - Praise

“Mendicants, a nun with five qualities is cast down to hell. What five? Without examining or scrutinizing, she praises those deserving of criticism, and criticizes those deserving of praise. She arouses faith in things that are dubious, and doesn’t arouse faith in things that are inspiring. And she wastes gifts given in faith. A nun with these five qualities is cast down to hell.

A nun with five qualities is raised up to heaven. What five? After examining and scrutinizing, she criticizes those deserving of criticism, and praises those deserving of praise. She doesn’t arouse faith in things that are dubious, and does arouse faith in things that are inspiring. And she doesn’t waste gifts given in faith. A nun with these five qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 5.125 - Longevity (1st)

“Mendicants, these five things impede longevity. What five? Doing what is unsuitable, not knowing moderation in what is suitable, eating food unfit for consumption, activity at unsuitable times, and unchastity. These are the five things that impede longevity.

These five things promote longevity. What five? Doing what is suitable, knowing moderation in what is suitable, eating food fit for consumption, activity at suitable times, and celibacy. These are the five things that promote longevity.”

AN 5.146 - A Friend

“Mendicants, you shouldn’t associate with a mendicant friend who has five qualities. What five? They start up work projects. They take up disciplinary issues. They conflict with leading mendicants. They like long and aimless wandering. They’re unable to educate, encourage, fire up, and inspire you from time to time with a Dhamma talk. Mendicants, you shouldn’t associate with a mendicant friend who has these five qualities.

You should associate with a mendicant friend who has five qualities. What five? They don’t start up work projects. They don’t take up disciplinary issues. They don’t conflict with leading mendicants. They don’t like long and aimless wandering. They’re able to educate, encourage, fire up, and inspire you from time to time with a Dhamma talk. You should associate with a mendicant friend who has these five qualities.”

AN 5.147 - Gifts of a Bad Person

(The Bhikkhu Bodhi translation has some really different implications, and is worth also reading. Here is Bhikkhu Sujato’s translation:)

“Mendicants, there are these five gifts of a bad person. What five? They give carelessly. They give thoughtlessly. They don’t give with their own hand. They give the dregs. They give without consideration for consequences. These are the five gifts of a bad person.

There are these five gifts of a good person. What five? They give carefully. They give thoughtfully. They give with their own hand. They don’t give the dregs. They give with consideration for consequences. These are the five gifts of a good person.”

AN 5.148 - A Good Person

(The Bhikkhu Bodhi translation has some really different implications, and is worth also reading. Here is Bhikkhu Sujato’s translation:)

“There are these five gifts of a good person. What five? They give a gift out of faith. They give a gift carefully. They give a gift at the right time. They give a gift with no strings attached. They give a gift without hurting themselves or others.

Having given a gift out of faith, in whatever place the result of that gift manifests they become rich, affluent, and wealthy. And they’re attractive, good-looking, lovely, of surpassing beauty.

Having given a gift carefully, in whatever place the result of that gift manifests they become rich, affluent, and wealthy. And their children, wives, bondservants, workers, and staff want to listen. They pay attention and try to understand.

Having given a gift at the right time, in whatever place the result of that gift manifests they become rich, affluent, and wealthy. And when the time is right, they get all that they need.

Having given a gift with no strings attached, in whatever place the result of that gift manifests they become rich, affluent, and wealthy. And their mind tends to enjoy the five refined kinds of sensual stimulation.

Having given a gift without hurting themselves or others, in whatever place the result of that gift manifests they become rich, affluent, and wealthy. And no damage comes to their property from anywhere, whether fire, flood, rulers, bandits, or unloved heirs.

These are the five gifts of a good person.”

AN 5.149 Temporarily Free (1st)

(The Bhikkhu Bodhi translation uses the word “Liberated” instead of “Free”. Here is Bhikkhu Sujato’s translation:)

“Mendicants, these five things lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free. What five? They relish work, talk, sleep, and company. And they don’t review the extent of their mind’s freedom. These five things lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free.

These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free. What five? They don’t relish work, talk, sleep, and company. And they review the extent of their mind’s freedom. These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free.”

AN 5.150 Temporarily Free (2nd)

“Mendicants, these five things lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free. What five? They relish work, talk, and sleep. They don’t guard the sense doors and they eat too much. These five things lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free.

These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free. What five? They don’t relish work, talk, sleep, and company. They guard the sense doors and they have moderation in eating. These five things don’t lead to the decline of a mendicant who is temporarily free.”

AN 5.156 - The Decline of the True Teaching (3rd)

“Mendicants, these five things lead to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching. What five?

It’s when the mendicants memorize discourses that they learned incorrectly, with misplaced words and phrases. When the words and phrases are misplaced, the meaning is misinterpreted. This is the first thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the mendicants are hard to admonish, having qualities that make them hard to admonish. They’re impatient, and don’t take instruction respectfully. This is the second thing …

Furthermore, the mendicants who are very learned—knowledgeable in the scriptures, who have memorized the teachings, the texts on monastic training, and the outlines—don’t carefully make others recite the discourses. When they pass away, the discourses are cut off at the root, with no-one to preserve them. This is the third thing …

Furthermore, the senior mendicants are indulgent and slack, leaders in backsliding, neglecting seclusion, not rousing energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. Those who come after them follow their example. They too are indulgent and slack … This is the fourth thing …

Furthermore, there’s a schism in the Saṅgha. When the Saṅgha is split, they abuse, insult, block, and reject each other. This doesn’t inspire confidence in those without it, and it causes some with confidence to change their minds. This is the fifth thing that leads to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

These five things lead to the decline and disappearance of the true teaching.

These five things lead to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching. What five? It’s when the mendicants memorize discourses that have been learned correctly, with well placed words and phrases. When the words and phrases are well organized, the meaning is correctly interpreted. This is the first thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.

Furthermore, the mendicants are easy to admonish, having qualities that make them easy to admonish. They’re patient, and take instruction respectfully. This is the second thing …

Furthermore, the mendicants who are very learned—knowledgeable in the scriptures, who have memorized the teachings, the texts on monastic training, and the outlines—carefully make others recite the discourses. When they pass away, the discourses aren’t cut off at the root, and they have someone to preserve them. This is the third thing …

Furthermore, the senior mendicants are not indulgent and slack, leaders in backsliding, neglecting seclusion. They rouse energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. Those who come after them follow their example. They too are not indulgent or slack … This is the fourth thing …

Furthermore, the Saṅgha lives comfortably, in harmony, appreciating each other, without quarreling, with one recitation. When the Saṅgha is in harmony, they don’t abuse, insult, block, or reject each other. This inspires confidence in those without it, and increases confidence in those who have it. This is the fifth thing that leads to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.

These five things lead to the continuation, persistence, and enduring of the true teaching.”

AN 5.157 - Inappropriate Talk

“Mendicants, there are certain topics that are inappropriate to talk about, taking into consideration which specific one of five people you are talking to. What five?

It’s inappropriate to talk to an unfaithful person about faith. It’s inappropriate to talk to an unethical person about ethics. It’s inappropriate to talk to an unlearned person about learning. It’s inappropriate to talk to a stingy person about generosity. It’s inappropriate to talk to a witless person about wisdom.

And why is it inappropriate to talk to an unfaithful person about faith? When an unfaithful person is spoken to about faith they lose their temper, becoming annoyed, hostile, and hard-hearted, and displaying annoyance, hate, and bitterness. Why is that? Not seeing that faith in themselves, they don’t get the rapture and joy that faith brings. That’s why it’s inappropriate to talk to an unfaithful person about faith.

And why is it inappropriate to talk to an unethical person about ethics? When an unethical person is spoken to about ethics they lose their temper … Why is that? Not seeing that ethical conduct in themselves, they don’t get the rapture and joy that ethical conduct brings. That’s why it’s inappropriate to talk to an unethical person about ethics.

And why is it inappropriate to talk to an unlearned person about learning? When an unlearned person is spoken to about learning they lose their temper … Why is that? Not seeing that learning in themselves, they don’t get the rapture and joy that learning brings. That’s why it’s inappropriate to talk to an unlearned person about learning.

And why is it inappropriate to talk to a stingy person about generosity? When an stingy person is spoken to about generosity they lose their temper … Why is that? Not seeing that generosity in themselves, they don’t get the rapture and joy that generosity brings. That’s why it’s inappropriate to talk to a stingy person about generosity.

And why is it inappropriate to talk to a witless person about wisdom? When a witless person is spoken to about wisdom they lose their temper, becoming annoyed, hostile, and hard-hearted, and displaying annoyance, hate, and bitterness. Why is that? Not seeing that wisdom in themselves, they don’t get the rapture and joy that wisdom brings. That’s why it’s inappropriate to talk to a witless person about wisdom.

These are topics that are inappropriate to talk about, taking into consideration which specific one of five people you are talking to.

There are certain topics that are appropriate to talk about, taking into consideration which specific one of five people you are talking to. What five?

It’s appropriate to talk to a faithful person about faith. It’s appropriate to talk to an ethical person about ethical conduct. It’s appropriate to talk to a learned person about learning. It’s appropriate to talk to a generous person about generosity. It’s appropriate to talk to a wise person about wisdom.

And why is it appropriate to talk to a faithful person about faith? When a faithful person is spoken to about faith they don’t lose their temper, they don’t get annoyed, hostile, and hard-hearted, or display annoyance, hate, and bitterness. Why is that? Seeing that faith in themselves, they get the rapture and joy that faith brings. That’s why it’s appropriate to talk to a faithful person about faith.

And why is it appropriate to talk to an ethical person about ethical conduct? When an ethical person is spoken to about ethical conduct they don’t lose their temper … Why is that? Seeing that ethical conduct in themselves, they get the rapture and joy that ethical conduct brings. That’s why it’s appropriate to talk to an ethical person about ethical conduct.

And why is it appropriate to talk to a learned person about learning? When a learned person is spoken to about learning they don’t lose their temper … Why is that? Seeing that learning in themselves, they get the rapture and joy that learning brings. That’s why it’s appropriate to talk to a learned person about learning.

And why is it appropriate to talk to a generous person about generosity? When a generous person is spoken to about generosity they don’t lose their temper … Why is that? Seeing that generosity in themselves, they get the rapture and joy that generosity brings. That’s why it’s appropriate to talk to a generous person about generosity.

And why is it appropriate to talk to a wise person about wisdom? When a wise person is spoken to about wisdom they don’t lose their temper, they don’t get annoyed, hostile, and hard-hearted, or display annoyance, hate, and bitterness. Why is that? Seeing that wisdom in themselves, they get the rapture and joy that wisdom brings. That’s why it’s appropriate to talk to a wise person about wisdom.

These are topics that are appropriate to talk about, taking into consideration which specific one of five people you are talking to.”

AN 5.159 - About Udayin

I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying at Kosambi, in Ghosita’s Park. Now at that time Ven. Udayin was sitting surrounded by a large assembly of householders, teaching the Dhamma. Ven. Ananda saw Ven. Udayin sitting surrounded by a large assembly of householders, teaching the Dhamma, and on seeing him went to the Blessed One. On arrival, he bowed down to the Blessed One and sat to one side. As he was sitting there he said to the Blessed One: “Ven. Udayin, lord, is sitting surrounded by a large assembly of householders, teaching the Dhamma.”

“It’s not easy to teach the Dhamma to others, Ananda. The Dhamma should be taught to others only when five qualities are established within the person teaching. Which five?

  1. The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, ‘I will speak step-by-step.’

  2. The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, ‘I will speak explaining the sequence [of cause & effect].’

  3. The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, ‘I will speak out of compassion.’

  4. The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, ‘I will speak not for the purpose of material reward.’

  5. The Dhamma should be taught with the thought, ‘I will speak without hurting myself or others.’

“It’s not easy to teach the Dhamma to others, Ananda. The Dhamma should be taught to others only when these five qualities are established within the person teaching.”

AN 5.161 - Subduing Hatred (1)

“There are these five ways of subduing hatred by which, when hatred arises in a monk, he should wipe it out completely. Which five?

“When one gives birth to hatred for an individual, one should develop good will for that individual. Thus the hatred for that individual should be subdued.

“When one gives birth to hatred for an individual, one should develop compassion for that individual. Thus the hatred for that individual should be subdued.

“When one gives birth to hatred for an individual, one should develop equanimity toward that individual. Thus the hatred for that individual should be subdued.

“When one gives birth to hatred for an individual, one should pay him no mind & pay him no attention. Thus the hatred for that individual should be subdued.

“When one gives birth to hatred for an individual, one should direct one’s thoughts to the fact of his being the product of his actions: ‘This venerable one is the doer of his actions, heir to his actions, born of his actions, related by his actions, and has his actions as his arbitrator. Whatever action he does, for good or for evil, to that will he fall heir.’ Thus the hatred for that individual should be subdued.

“These are five ways of subduing hatred by which, when hatred arises in a monk, he should wipe it out completely.”

AN 5.167 - Accusation

(A famous sutta listing 5 qualities to check and ensure in oneself before giving admonishment to another monk)

There Sāriputta addressed the mendicants: “Reverends, a mendicant who wants to accuse another should first establish five things in themselves.

What five? I will speak at the right time, not at the wrong time. I will speak truthfully, not falsely. I will speak gently, not harshly. I will speak beneficially, not harmfully. I will speak lovingly, not from secret hate. A mendicant who wants to accuse another should first establish these five things in themselves.

The mendicant who makes improper accusations should be chastened in five ways. ‘Reverend, you made an accusation at the wrong time, not at the right time. There’s a reason for you to feel remorse. You made an accusation falsely, not truthfully. … You made an accusation harshly, not gently. … You made an accusation harmfully, not beneficially. … You made an accusation with secret hate, not lovingly. There’s a reason for you to feel remorse.’ The mendicant who makes improper accusations should be chastened in these five ways. Why is that? So that another mendicant wouldn’t think to make a false accusation.

AN 5.209 - The Sound of Singing

(A rare and pithy sutta effectively explaining the difference between “singing” [melodious, and there would be no harmony across any and all simultaneous singers] and “chanting” [which has relatively little tonal variance, but all chanters have harmony with each other].)

“Mendicants, there are these five drawbacks in reciting with a drawn-out singing sound. What five? You relish the sound of your own voice. Others relish the sound of your voice. Householders complain: ‘These ascetics, followers of the Sakyan, sing just like us!’ When you’re enjoying the melody, your immersion breaks up. Those who come after follow your example. These are the five drawbacks in reciting with a drawn-out singing sound.”

AN 5.224 - Stingy

(A rare, and pithy sutta which virtually no Abbot-for-life monk will ever teach you…)

“Mendicants, there are these five drawbacks of overstaying. What five? You become stingy with dwellings, families, material possessions, praise, and the teaching. These are the five drawbacks of overstaying.

There are these five benefits of staying for a reasonable length of time. What five? You’re not stingy with dwellings, families, material possessions, praise, and the teaching. These are the five benefits of staying for a reasonable length of time.”

AN 5.234 - Very Helpful

“Mendicants, a resident mendicant with five qualities is very helpful to the monastery. What five?

  1. They’re ethical, restrained in the code of conduct, with good behavior and supporters. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken.

  2. They’re very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s totally full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reciting them, mentally scrutinizing them, and understanding them with right view.

  3. They repair what is decayed and damaged.

  4. When a large mendicant Saṅgha is arriving with mendicants from abroad, they go to the lay people and announce: ‘A large mendicant Saṅgha is arriving with mendicants from abroad. Make merit! Now is the time to make merit!’

  5. They get the four absorptions—blissful meditations in the present life that belong to the higher mind—when they want, without trouble or difficulty.

A resident mendicant with these five qualities is very helpful to the monastery.”

AN 5.235 - A Compassionate Mendicant

“Mendicants, a resident mendicant with five qualities shows compassion to the lay people. What five?

  1. They encourage them in higher ethics.

  2. They equip them to see the truth of the teachings.

  3. When they are sick, they go to them and prompt their mindfulness, saying: ‘Establish your mindfulness, good sirs, in what is worthy.’

  4. When a large mendicant Saṅgha is arriving with mendicants from abroad, they go to the lay people and announce: ‘A large mendicant Saṅgha is arriving with mendicants from abroad. Make merit! Now is the time to make merit!’

  5. And they eat whatever food they give them, coarse or fine, not wasting a gift given in faith. A resident mendicant with these five qualities shows compassion to the lay people.”

AN 5.236 - Deserving Criticism (1st)

“Mendicants, a resident mendicant with five qualities is cast down to hell. What five?

  1. Without examining or scrutinizing, they praise those deserving of criticism,

  2. …and they criticize those deserving of praise.

  3. Without examining or scrutinizing, they arouse faith in things that are dubious,

  4. …and they don’t arouse faith in things that are inspiring.

  5. And they waste a gift given in faith. A resident mendicant with these five qualities is cast down to hell.

A resident mendicant with five qualities is raised up to heaven. What five?

  1. After examining and scrutinizing, they criticize those deserving of criticism,

  2. and they praise those deserving of praise.

  3. They don’t arouse faith in things that are dubious,

  4. and they do arouse faith in things that are inspiring.

  5. And they don’t waste a gift given in faith.

A resident mendicant with these five qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 5.237 - Deserving Criticism (2nd)

“Mendicants, a resident mendicant with five qualities is cast down to hell. What five?

  1. Without examining or scrutinizing, they praise those deserving of criticism,

  2. and they criticize those deserving of praise.

  3. They’re stingy and avaricious regarding monasteries.

  4. They’re stingy and avaricious regarding families.

  5. And they waste a gift given in faith.

A resident mendicant with these five qualities is cast down to hell.

A resident mendicant with five qualities is raised up to heaven. What five?

  1. After examining and scrutinizing, they criticize those deserving of criticism,

  2. …and they praise those deserving of praise.

  3. They’re not stingy and avaricious regarding monasteries.

  4. They’re not stingy and avaricious regarding families.

  5. And they don’t waste a gift given in faith.

A resident mendicant with these five qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 5.240 - Stinginess (2nd)

“Mendicants, a resident mendicant with five qualities is cast down to hell. What five?

  1. They’re stingy regarding monasteries,

  2. …families,

  3. …material possessions,

  4. …praise,

  5. …and the teachings.

A resident mendicant with these five qualities is cast down to hell.

A resident mendicant with five qualities is raised up to heaven. What five?

  1. They’re not stingy regarding monasteries,

  2. …families,

  3. …material possessions,

  4. …praise,

  5. …and the teachings. A resident mendicant with these five qualities is raised up to heaven.”

AN 5.250 - Faith in Individuals

“Mendicants, there are these five drawbacks of placing faith in an individual. What five?

The individual to whom a person is devoted falls into an offense such that the Saṅgha suspends them. It occurs to them: ‘This person dear and beloved to me has been suspended by the Saṅgha.’ They lose much of their faith in mendicants. So they don’t frequent other mendicants, they don’t hear the true teaching, and they fall away from the true teaching. This is the first drawback in placing faith in an individual.

Furthermore, the individual to whom a person is devoted falls into an offense such that the Saṅgha makes them sit at the end of the line. … This is the second drawback in placing faith in an individual.

Furthermore, the individual to whom a person is devoted departs for another region … disrobes … passes away. It occurs to them: ‘This person dear and beloved to me has passed away.’ So they don’t frequent other mendicants, they don’t hear the true teaching, and they fall away from the true teaching. This is the fifth drawback in placing faith in an individual.

These are the five drawbacks of placing faith in an individual.”

AN 5.253 - Who Should Have a Novice as Attendant

“Mendicants, a novice should attend on a mendicant with five qualities. What five? It’s a mendicant who has the entire spectrum of an adept’s ethics, immersion, wisdom, freedom, and the knowledge and vision of freedom. A novice should attend on a mendicant with these five qualities.”

AN 5.254 - Stinginess

“Monks, there are these five forms of stinginess. Which five?

  1. Stinginess as to one’s monastery [lodgings],

  2. stinginess as to one’s family [of supporters],

  3. stinginess as to one’s gains,

  4. stinginess as to one’s status, and

  5. stinginess as to the Dhamma.

These are the five forms of stinginess. And the meanest of these five is this: stinginess as to the Dhamma.”

AN 6.52 - Aristocrats

(A rare sutta that implies that if you are preoccupied, etc. with certain sorts of things, it betrays how you deserve to be characterized)

And then the brahmin Jāṇussoṇi went up to the Buddha, and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, he sat down to one side and said to the Buddha:

“Aristocrats, Master Gotama, have what as their ambition? What is their preoccupation? What are they dedicated to? What do they insist on? What is their ultimate goal?”

“Aristocrats, brahmin, have wealth as their ambition. They’re preoccupied with wisdom. They’re dedicated to power. They insist on territory. Their ultimate goal is authority.”

“Brahmins, Master Gotama, have what as their ambition? What is their preoccupation? What are they dedicated to? What do they insist on? What is their ultimate goal?”

“Brahmins have wealth as their ambition. They’re preoccupied with wisdom. They’re dedicated to the hymns. They insist on sacrifice. Their ultimate goal is the Brahmā realm.”

“Householders, Master Gotama, have what as their ambition? What is their preoccupation? What are they dedicated to? What do they insist on? What is their ultimate goal?”

“Householders have wealth as their ambition. They’re preoccupied with wisdom. They’re dedicated to their profession. They insist on work. Their ultimate goal is to complete their work.”

“Women, Master Gotama, have what as their ambition? What is their preoccupation? What are they dedicated to? What do they insist on? What is their ultimate goal?”

“Women have a man as their ambition. They’re preoccupied with adornments. They’re dedicated to their children. They insist on being without a co-wife. Their ultimate goal is authority.”

“Bandits, Master Gotama, have what as their ambition? What is their preoccupation? What are they dedicated to? What do they insist on? What is their ultimate goal?”

“Bandits have theft as their ambition. They’re preoccupied with a hiding place. They’re dedicated to their sword. They insist on darkness. Their ultimate goal is invisibility.”

“Ascetics, Master Gotama, have what as their ambition? What is their preoccupation? What are they dedicated to? What do they insist on? What is their ultimate goal?”

“Ascetics have patience and gentleness as their ambition. They’re preoccupied with wisdom. They’re dedicated to ethical conduct. They insist on owning nothing. Their ultimate goal is extinguishment.”

“It’s incredible, Master Gotama, it’s amazing! Master Gotama knows the ambition, preoccupation, dedication, insistence, and ultimate goal of aristocrats, brahmins, householders, women, bandits, and ascetics. Excellent, Master Gotama! Excellent! … From this day forth, may Master Gotama remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge for life.”

AN 6.54 - About Dhammika

(Interesting dynamics about how harmful it is to insult, with hateful intent, wise people, or well-practicing Buddhists with Right View)

AN 7.65 - Conscience and Prudence

“Mendicants, when there is no conscience and prudence, one who lacks conscience and prudence has destroyed a vital condition for sense restraint. When there is no sense restraint, one who lacks sense restraint has destroyed a vital condition for ethical conduct. When there is no ethical conduct, one who lacks ethics has destroyed a vital condition for right immersion. When there is no right immersion, one who lacks right immersion has destroyed a vital condition for true knowledge and vision. When there is no true knowledge and vision, one who lacks true knowledge and vision has destroyed a vital condition for disillusionment and dispassion. When there is no disillusionment and dispassion, one who lacks disillusionment and dispassion has destroyed a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.

Suppose there was a tree that lacked branches and foliage. Its shoots, bark, softwood, and heartwood would not grow to fullness.

In the same way, when there is no conscience and prudence, a person who lacks conscience and prudence has destroyed a vital condition for sense restraint. When there is no sense restraint, one who lacks sense restraint has destroyed a vital condition for ethical conduct. When there is no ethical conduct, one who lacks ethics has destroyed a vital condition for right immersion. When there is no right immersion, one who lacks right immersion has destroyed a vital condition for true knowledge and vision. When there is no true knowledge and vision, one who lacks true knowledge and vision has destroyed a vital condition for disillusionment and dispassion. When there is no disillusionment and dispassion, one who lacks disillusionment and dispassion has destroyed a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.

When there is conscience and prudence, a person who has fulfilled conscience and prudence has fulfilled a vital condition for sense restraint. When there is sense restraint, one who has fulfilled sense restraint has fulfilled a vital condition for ethical conduct. When there is ethical conduct, one who has fulfilled ethical conduct has fulfilled a vital condition for right immersion. When there is right immersion, one who has fulfilled right immersion has fulfilled a vital condition for true knowledge and vision. When there is true knowledge and vision, one who has fulfilled true knowledge and vision has fulfilled a vital condition for disillusionment and dispassion. When there is disillusionment and dispassion, one who has fulfilled disillusionment and dispassion has fulfilled a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.

Suppose there was a tree that was complete with branches and foliage. Its shoots, bark, softwood, and heartwood would grow to fullness.

In the same way, when there is conscience and prudence, a person who has fulfilled conscience and prudence has fulfilled a vital condition for sense restraint. … One who has fulfilled disillusionment and dispassion has fulfilled a vital condition for knowledge and vision of freedom.”

AN 7.68 - One With a Sense of Dhamma

“And how is a monk one with a sense of Dhamma? There is the case where a monk knows the Dhamma: dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question & answer sessions. If he didn’t know the Dhamma—dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question & answer sessions—he wouldn’t be said to be one with a sense of Dhamma. So it’s because he does know the Dhamma—dialogues… question & answer sessions—that he is said to be one with a sense of Dhamma. This is one with a sense of Dhamma.

“And how is a monk one with a sense of meaning? There is the case where a monk knows the meaning of this & that statement—’This is the meaning of that statement; that is the meaning of this.’ If he didn’t know the meaning of this & that statement—’This is the meaning of that statement; that is the meaning of this’—he wouldn’t be said to be one with a sense of meaning. So it’s because he does know the meaning of this & that statement—’This is the meaning of that statement; that is the meaning of this’—that he is said to be one with a sense of meaning. This is one with a sense of Dhamma & a sense of meaning.

“And how is a monk one with a sense of himself? There is the case where a monk knows himself: ‘This is how far I have come in conviction, virtue, learning, liberality, discernment, quick-wittedness.’ If he didn’t know himself—’This is how far I have come in conviction, virtue, learning, liberality, discernment, quick-wittedness’—he wouldn’t be said to be one with a sense of himself. So it’s because he does know himself—’This is how far I have come in conviction, virtue, learning, liberality, discernment, quick-wittedness’—that he is said to be one with a sense of himself. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, & a sense of himself.

“And how is a monk one with a sense of moderation? There is the case where a monk knows moderation in accepting robes, almsfood, lodgings, & medicinal requisites for curing the sick. If he didn’t know moderation in accepting robes, almsfood, lodgings, & medicinal requisites for curing the sick, he wouldn’t be said to be one with a sense of moderation. So it’s because he does know moderation in accepting robes, almsfood, lodgings, & medicinal requisites for curing the sick, that he is said to be one with a sense of moderation. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, & a sense of moderation.

“And how is a monk one with a sense of time? There is the case where a monk knows the time: ‘This is the time for recitation; this, the time for questioning; this, the time for making an effort [in meditation]; this, the time for seclusion.’ If he didn’t know the time—’This is the time for recitation; this, the time for questioning; this, the time for making an effort; this, the time for seclusion’—he wouldn’t be said to be one with a sense of time. So it’s because he does know the time—’This is the time for recitation; this, the time for questioning; this, the time for making an effort; this, the time for seclusion’—that he is said to be one with a sense of time. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, a sense of moderation, & a sense of time.

“And how is a monk one with a sense of social gatherings? There is the case where a monk knows his social gathering: ‘This is a social gathering of noble warriors; this, a social gathering of brahmans; this, a social gathering of householders; this, a social gathering of contemplatives; here one should approach them in this way, stand in this way, act in this way, sit in this way, speak in this way, stay silent in this way.’ If he didn’t know his social gathering—’This is a social gathering of noble warriors; this, a social gathering of brahmans; this, a social gathering of householders; this, a social gathering of contemplatives; here one should approach them in this way, stand in this way, act in this way, sit in this way, speak in this way, stay silent in this way’—he wouldn’t be said to be one with a sense of social gatherings. So it’s because he does know his social gathering—’This is a social gathering of noble warriors; this, a social gathering of brahmans; this, a social gathering of householders; this, a social gathering of contemplatives; here one should approach them in this way, stand in this way, act in this way, sit in this way, speak in this way, stay silent in this way’—that he is said to be one with a sense of social gatherings. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, a sense of moderation, a sense of time, & a sense of social gatherings.

“And how is a monk one with a sense of distinctions among individuals? There is the case where people are known to a monk in terms of two categories.

“Of two people—one who wants to see noble ones and one who doesn’t—the one who doesn’t want to see noble ones is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does want to see noble ones is, for that reason, to be praised.

“Of two people who want to see noble ones—one who wants to hear the true Dhamma and one who doesn’t—the one who doesn’t want to hear the true Dhamma is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does want to hear the true Dhamma is, for that reason, to be praised.

“Of two people who want to hear the true Dhamma—one who listens with an attentive ear and one who listens without an attentive ear—the one who listens without an attentive ear is to be criticized for that reason, the one who listens with an attentive ear is, for that reason, to be praised.

“Of two people who listen with an attentive ear—one who, having listened to the Dhamma, remembers it, and one who doesn’t—the one who, having listened to the Dhamma, doesn’t remember it is to be criticized for that reason, the one who, having listened to the Dhamma, does remember the Dhamma is, for that reason, to be praised.

“Of two people who, having listened to the Dhamma, remember it—one who explores the meaning of the Dhamma he has remembered and one who doesn’t—the one who doesn’t explore the meaning of the Dhamma he has remembered is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does explore the meaning of the Dhamma he has remembered is, for that reason, to be praised.

“Of two people who explore the meaning of the Dhamma they have remembered—one who practices the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning, and one who doesn’t—the one who doesn’t practice the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning, is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does practice the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning is, for that reason, to be praised.

“Of two people who practice the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning—one who practices for both his own benefit and that of others, and one who practices for his own benefit but not that of others—the one who practices for his own benefit but not that of others is to be criticized for that reason, the one who practices for both his own benefit and that of others is, for that reason, to be praised.

“This is how people are known to a monk in terms of two categories. And this is how a monk is one with a sense of distinctions among individuals.

“A monk endowed with these seven qualities is worthy of gifts, worthy of hospitality, worthy of offerings, worthy of respect, an unexcelled field of merit for the world.”

AN 8.4 - Pleasing (2)

“Bhikkhus, possessing eight qualities, a bhikkhu is displeasing and disagreeable to his fellow monks and is neither respected nor esteemed by them. What eight? Here, a bhikkhu is (1) desirous of gains, (2) honor, and (3) reputation; (4) he does not know the proper time and (5) does not know moderation; (6) he is impure; (7) he speaks much; and (8) he insults and reviles his fellow monks. Possessing these eight qualities, a bhikkhu is displeasing and disagreeable to his fellow monks and is neither respected nor esteemed by them.

“Bhikkhus, possessing eight qualities, a bhikkhu is pleasing and agreeable to his fellow monks and is respected and esteemed by them. What eight? Here, a bhikkhu is (1) not desirous of gains, (2) honor, and (3) reputation; (4) he is one who knows the proper time and (5) who knows moderation; (6) he is pure; (7) he does not speak much; and (8) he does not insult and revile his fellow monks. Possessing these eight qualities, a bhikkhu is pleasing and agreeable to his fellow monks and is respected and esteemed by them.”

AN 8.6 - World (2)

… “But, bhikkhus,

  1. when an instructed noble disciple meets with gain, he reflects thus: ‘This gain that I have met is impermanent, suffering, and subject to change.’ He thus understands it as it really is.

  2. When he meets with loss …

  3. … fame …

  4. … disrepute …

  5. … blame …

  6. … praise …

  7. … pleasure …

  8. … pain, he reflects thus: ‘This pain that I have met is impermanent, suffering, and subject to change.’ He thus understands it as it really is.

“Gain does not obsess his mind, and loss does not obsess his mind. Fame does not obsess his mind, and disrepute does not obsess his mind. Blame does not obsess his mind, and praise does not obsess his mind. Pleasure does not obsess his mind, and pain does not obsess his mind. He is not attracted to gain or repelled by loss. He is not attracted to fame or repelled by disrepute. He is not attracted to praise or repelled by blame. He is not attracted to pleasure or repelled by pain. Having thus discarded attraction and repulsion, he is freed from birth, from old age and death, from sorrow, lamentation, pain, dejection, and anguish; he is freed from suffering, I say. …

AN 8.10 - Trash

On one occasion the Blessed One was dwelling at Campā on a bank of the Gaggārā Lotus Pond. Now on that occasion bhikkhus were reproving a bhikkhu for an offense. When being reproved, that bhikkhu answered evasively, diverted the discussion to an irrelevant subject, and displayed anger, hatred, and resentment. Then the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus: “Bhikkhus, eject this person! Bhikkhus, eject this person! This person should be banished. Why should another’s son vex you?

“Here, bhikkhus, so long as the bhikkhus do not see his offense, a certain person has the same manner

  1. of going forward and

  2. returning,

  3. of looking ahead and

  4. looking aside,

  5. of bending and

  6. stretching his limbs, and

  7. of wearing his robes and

  8. carrying his outer robe and bowl as the good bhikkhus.

When, however, they see his offense, they know him as a corruption among ascetics, just chaff and trash among ascetics. Then they expel him. For what reason? So that he doesn’t corrupt the good bhikkhus.

“Suppose that when a field of barley is growing, some blighted barley would appear that would be just chaff and trash among the barley. As long as its head has not come forth, its roots would be just like those of the other crops, the good barley; its stem would be just like that of the other crops, the good barley; its leaves would be just like those of the other crops, the good barley. When, however, its head comes forth, they know it as blighted barley, just chaff and trash among the barley. Then they pull it up by the root and cast it out from the barley field. For what reason? So that it doesn’t spoil the good barley.

“So too, so long as the bhikkhus do not see his offense, a certain person here has the same manner of going forward … and carrying his outer robe and bowl as the good bhikkhus. When, however, they see his offense, they know him as a corruption among ascetics, just chaff and trash among ascetics. Then they expel him. For what reason? So that he doesn’t corrupt the good bhikkhus.

“Suppose that when a large heap of grain is being winnowed, the grains that are firm and pithy form a pile on one side, and the wind blows the spoiled grains and chaff to another side. Then the owners take a broom and sweep them even further away. For what reason? So that they don’t spoil the good grain.

“So too, so long as the bhikkhus do not see his offense, a certain person here has the same manner of going forward … and carrying his outer robe and bowl as the others, the good bhikkhus. When, however, the bhikkhus see his offense, they know him as a corruption among ascetics, just chaff and trash among ascetics. Then they expel him. For what reason? So that he doesn’t corrupt the good bhikkhus.

“Suppose a man needs a gutter for a well. He would take a sharp axe and enter the woods. He would strike a number of trees with the blade of his axe. When so struck, the firm and pithy trees would give off a dull sound, but those that are inwardly rotten, corrupt, and decayed would give off a hollow sound. The man would cut this tree down at its foot, cut off the crown, thoroughly clean it out, and use it as a gutter for a well.

“So too, bhikkhus, so long as the bhikkhus do not see his offense, a certain person here has the same manner of going forward and returning, of looking ahead and looking aside, of bending and stretching his limbs, of wearing his robes and carrying his outer robe and bowl, as the good bhikkhus. When, however, the bhikkhus see his offense, they know him as a corruption among ascetics, just chaff and trash among ascetics. Then they expel him. For what reason? So that he doesn’t corrupt the good bhikkhus.”

By living together with him, know him as
an angry person with evil desires;
a denigrator, obstinate, and insolent,
envious, miserly, and deceptive.

He speaks to people just like an ascetic,
addressing them with a calm voice,
but secretly he does evil deeds,
holds pernicious views, and lacks respect.

Though he is devious, a speaker of lies,
you should know him as he truly is;
then you should all meet in harmony
and firmly drive him away.

Get rid of the trash!
Remove the depraved fellows!
Sweep the chaff away, non-ascetics
who think themselves ascetics!

Having banished those of evil desires,
of bad conduct and resort,
dwell in communion, ever mindful,
the pure with the pure;
then, in harmony, alert,
you will make an end of suffering.

AN 8.30 - Anuruddha

(A rare definition of the seclusion-respecting behaviour, when monks speak with lay people…)

… “When it was said: ‘This Dhamma is for one who resorts to solitude, not for one who delights in company,’ with reference to what was this said? Here, when a bhikkhu resorts to solitude, bhikkhus, bhikkhunīs, male lay followers, female lay followers, kings, royal ministers, heads of other sects, and disciples belonging to other sects approach him. In each case, with a mind that slants, slopes, and inclines to seclusion, withdrawn, delighting in renunciation, he gives them a talk invariably concerned with dismissing them. When it was said: ‘This Dhamma is for one who resorts to solitude, not for one who delights in company,’ it is with reference to this that this was said. …

AN 8.61 - Desire

(A rare sutta explaining the right behaviours for monks, towards acquiring gains. It says nothing about subtitles like bhava, however, which might occur merely by thinking about, and dwelling upon desires for gains)

“Mendicants, there are eight kinds of people found in the world. What eight?

First, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But material possessions don’t come to them. And so they sorrow and pine and lament, beating their breast and falling into confusion because they don’t get those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But when possessions don’t come to them, they sorrow and lament. They’ve fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And material possessions do come to them. And so they become indulgent and fall into negligence regarding those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And when possessions come to them, they become intoxicated and negligent. They’ve fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And material possessions don’t come to them. And so they sorrow and pine and lament, beating their breast and falling into confusion because they don’t get those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And when possessions don’t come to them, they sorrow and lament. They’ve fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But material possessions do come to them. And so they become indulgent and fall into negligence regarding those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But when possessions come to them, they become intoxicated and negligent. They’ve fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But material possessions don’t come to them. But they don’t sorrow and pine and lament, beating their breast and falling into confusion because they don’t get those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But when possessions don’t come to them, they don’t sorrow and lament. They haven’t fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And material possessions do come to them. But they don’t become indulgent and fall into negligence regarding those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But when possessions come to them, they don’t become intoxicated and negligent. They haven’t fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And material possessions don’t come to them. But they don’t sorrow and pine and lament, beating their breast and falling into confusion because they don’t get those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And when possessions don’t come to them, they don’t sorrow and lament. They haven’t fallen from the true teaching.

Next, when a mendicant stays secluded, living independently, a desire arises for material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. But material possessions do come to them. But they don’t become indulgent and fall into negligence regarding those material possessions. This is called a mendicant who lives desiring material possessions. They don’t try hard, strive, and make an effort to get them. And when possessions come to them, they don’t become intoxicated and negligent. They haven’t fallen from the true teaching.

These are the eight people found in the world.”

AN 8.62 - Able

(Bhikkhu Bodhi’s translation in the Wisdom Publications Anguttara Nikaya is worth reading here.)

AN 8.64 - At Gaya

(This rare sutta suggests that the Buddha considered the ability to know virtually everything there is to know about devas, firsthand, as a prerequisite to him announcing that he was fully Enlightened.)

Thus have i heard:

Once the Exalted One was staying on Gaya Head at Gaya; and there he addressed the monks, saying:

‘Monks.’

‘Lord,’ they replied.

And the Exalted One said:

‘Monks, before my awakening, while I was not yet completely awakened and but a being awakening, I perceived auras, but I saw no forms.

Monks, to me there came the thought:

“If I were both to perceive auras and to see forms, knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I both perceived the auras and saw the forms, but I did not stand with, talk to or engage in conversation any of those devas.

Monks, to me came the thought:

“If I were to perceive the auras, see the forms, stand with, talk to and engage those devas in conversation, knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I perceived the auras, saw the forms, stood with, talked to and engaged those devas in conversation, but I knew not of those devas:

These devas are from such and such a deva community.

Monks, to me came the thought:

“If I were to perceive the auras, see the forms, stand with, talk to and engage those devas in conversation, and know that these devas are from such and such a community, knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I perceived the auras, saw the forms, stood with, talked to and engaged those devas in conversation, and knew that these devas were from such and such a community, but I knew not of those devas:

These devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there.

Monks, to me came the thought:

“If I were to perceive the auras, see the forms, stand with, talk to and engage those devas in conversation, and to know that these devas are from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I perceived the auras, saw the forms, stood with, talked to and engaged those devas in conversation, and knew that these devas were from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there but I knew not of those devas:

Such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe.

Monks, to me came the thought:

“If I were to perceive the auras, see the forms, stand with, talk to and engage those devas in conversation, and to know that these devas are from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I perceived the auras, saw the forms, stood with, talked to and engaged those devas in conversation, and knew that these devas were from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe but I knew not of those devas:

These devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length those devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length.

Monks, to me came the thought:

“If I were to perceive the auras, see the forms, stand with, talk to and engage those devas in conversation, and to know that these devas are from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe these devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length those devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I perceived the auras, saw the forms, stood with, talked to and engaged those devas in conversation, and knew that these devas were from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe these devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length those devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length but I knew not of those devas whether I had dwelt with those devas formerly or not.

Monks, to me came the thought:

“If I were to perceive the auras, see the forms, stand with, talk to and engage those devas in conversation, and to know that these devas are from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe these devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length those devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length and whether I had dwelt with those devas formerly or not knowledge and vision within me would thus be better purified.”

Monks, later on, living zealous, earnest, resolute, I perceived the auras, saw the forms, stood with, talked to and engaged those devas in conversation, and knew that these devas were from such and such a community, these devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there; those devas as the result of their deeds passed away from here and arose there such is the food of these devas, such their experiences, such their weal and woe; of those devas such is the food, such their experiences, such their weal and woe these devas live so long, those devas live so long, they have a life-span of such length they have a life-span of such length and whether I had dwelt with those devas formerly or not.

Monks, so long as this eightfold series of knowledge and vision of the higher devas was not fully purified in me, I did not realize as one wholly awakened to the highest awakening, unsurpassed in the world of devas, with its Māras and its Brahmās, or in the world of mankind with its recluses and godly men, devas and men.

But when the eightfold series of knowledge and vision of the higher devas was fully purified in me, then, monks, I realized as one wholly awakened to the highest awakening, unsurpassed in the world of devas, with its Māras and its Brahmās, or in the world of mankind with its recluses and godly men, devas and men.

Then knowledge and vision arose in me, and I knew:

Sure is my heart’s release; this is my last birth; there is now no more becoming for me.’

AN 8.68 - Noble Expressions

“Mendicants, there are these eight noble expressions. What eight? Saying you haven’t seen, heard, thought, or known something, and you haven’t. And saying you’ve seen, heard, thought, or known something, and you have. These are the eight noble expressions.”

AN 9.4 - With Nandaka

(A rare sutta highlighting the importance of investigation of Dhamma after Samadhi, note the simile of the lame animal…)

At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery.

Now at that time Venerable Nandaka was educating, encouraging, firing up, and inspiring the mendicants in the assembly hall with a Dhamma talk. Then in the late afternoon, the Buddha came out of retreat and went to the assembly hall. He stood outside the door waiting for the talk to end. When he knew the talk had ended he cleared his throat and knocked with the latch. The mendicants opened the door for the Buddha, and he entered the assembly hall, where he sat on the seat spread out.

He said to Nandaka, “Nandaka, that was a long exposition of the teaching you gave to the mendicants. My back was aching while I stood outside the door waiting for the talk to end.”

When he said this, Nandaka felt embarrassed and said to the Buddha, “Sir, we didn’t know that the Buddha was standing outside the door. If we’d known, I wouldn’t have said so much.”

Then the Buddha, knowing that Nandaka was embarrassed, said to him, “Good, good, Nandaka! It’s appropriate for gentlemen like you, who have gone forth in faith from the lay life to homelessness, to sit together for a Dhamma talk. When you’re sitting together you should do one of two things: discuss the teachings or keep noble silence.

Nandaka, a mendicant is faithful but not ethical. So they’re incomplete in that respect, and should fulfill it, thinking, ‘How can I become faithful and ethical?’ When a mendicant is faithful and ethical, they’re complete in that respect.

A mendicant is faithful and ethical, but does not get internal serenity of heart. So they’re incomplete in that respect, and should fulfill it, thinking, ‘How can I become faithful and ethical and get internal serenity of heart?’ When a mendicant is faithful and ethical and gets internal serenity of heart, they’re complete in that respect.

A mendicant is faithful, ethical, and gets internal serenity of heart, but they don’t get the higher wisdom of discernment of principles. So they’re incomplete in that respect. Suppose, Nandaka, there was a four-footed animal that was lame and disabled. It would be incomplete in that respect. In the same way, a mendicant is faithful, ethical, and gets internal serenity of heart, but they don’t get the higher wisdom of discernment of principles. So they’re incomplete in that respect, and should fulfill it, thinking, ‘How can I become faithful and ethical and get internal serenity of heart and get the higher wisdom of discernment of principles?’

When a mendicant is faithful and ethical and gets internal serenity of heart and gets the higher wisdom of discernment of principles, they’re complete in that respect.”

That is what the Buddha said. When he had spoken, the Holy One got up from his seat and entered his dwelling.

Then soon after the Buddha left, Venerable Nandaka said to the mendicants, “Just now, reverends, the Buddha explained a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure in four statements, before getting up from his seat and entering his dwelling:

‘Nandaka, a mendicant is faithful but not ethical. So they’re incomplete in that respect, and should fulfill it, thinking, “How can I become faithful and ethical?” When a mendicant is faithful and ethical, they’re complete in that respect.

A mendicant is faithful and ethical, but does not get internal serenity of heart. …

They get internal serenity of heart, but they don’t get the higher wisdom of discernment of principles. So they’re incomplete in that respect. Suppose, Nandaka, there was a four-footed animal that was lame and disabled. It would be incomplete in that respect. In the same way, a mendicant is faithful, ethical, and gets internal serenity of heart, but they don’t get the higher wisdom of discernment of principles. So they’re incomplete in that respect, and should fulfill it, thinking: “How can I become faithful and ethical and get internal serenity of heart and get the higher wisdom of discernment of principles?” When a mendicant is faithful and ethical and gets internal serenity of heart and gets the higher wisdom of discernment of principles, they’re complete in that respect.’

Reverends, there are these five benefits of listening to the teachings at the right time and discussing the teachings at the right time. What five?

Firstly, a mendicant teaches the mendicants the Dhamma that’s good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased. And they reveal a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. Whenever they do this, they become liked and approved by the Teacher, respected and admired. This is the first benefit …

Furthermore, a mendicant teaches the mendicants the Dhamma … Whenever they do this, they feel inspired by the meaning and the teaching in that Dhamma. This is the second benefit …

Furthermore, a mendicant teaches the mendicants the Dhamma … Whenever they do this, they see the meaning of a deep saying in that Dhamma with penetrating wisdom. This is the third benefit …

Furthermore, a mendicant teaches the mendicants the Dhamma … Whenever they do this, their spiritual companions esteem them more highly, thinking, ‘For sure this venerable has attained or will attain.’ This is the fourth benefit …

Furthermore, a mendicant teaches the mendicants the Dhamma … Whenever they do this, there may be trainee mendicants present, who haven’t achieved their heart’s desire, but live aspiring to the supreme sanctuary. Hearing that teaching, they rouse energy for attaining the unattained, achieving the unachieved, and realizing the unrealized. There may be perfected mendicants present, who have ended the defilements, completed the spiritual journey, done what had to be done, laid down the burden, a chieved their own goal, utterly ended the fetters of rebirth, and are rightly freed through enlightenment. Hearing that teaching, they simply wish to live happily in the present life. This is the fifth benefit …

These are the five benefits of listening to the teachings at the right time and discussing the teachings at the right time.”

AN 9.69 - Stinginess

“Mendicants, there are these five kinds of stinginess. What five? Stinginess with dwellings, families, material possessions, praise, and the teaching. These are the five kinds of stinginess.

To give up these five kinds of stinginess you should develop the four kinds of mindfulness meditation. …”

AN 10.1 - What Purpose?

  1. “Ānanda, the purpose and benefit of wholesome virtuous behavior is non-regret.” …

AN 10.7 - Sāriputta

(A rare sutta which suggests that even in Jhanas where common knowledge would have it that there can no longer be any trace of thoughts any longer - namely the second jhana and above - it’s still possible to think small amounts of suitable and pertinent thoughts which help the jhana to continue)

Then the Venerable Ānanda approached the Venerable Sāriputta and exchanged greetings with him. When they had concluded their greetings and cordial talk, he sat down to one side and said to the Venerable Sāriputta:

“Friend Sāriputta, could a bhikkhu obtain such a state of concentration that (1) he would not be percipient of earth in relation to earth; (2) of water in relation to water; (3) of fire in relation to fire; (4) of air in relation to air; (5) of the base of the infinity of space in relation to the base of the infinity of space; (6) of the base of the infinity of consciousness in relation to the base of the infinity of consciousness; (7) of the base of nothingness in relation to the base of nothingness; (8) of the base of neither-perception-nor-non-perception in relation to the base of neither-perception-nor-non-perception; (9) of this world in relation to this world; (10) of the other world in relation to the other world, but he would still be percipient?”

“He could, friend Ānanda.”

“But how, friend Sāriputta, could he obtain such a state of concentration?”

“On one occasion, friend Ānanda, I was dwelling right here in Sāvatthī in the Blind Men’s Grove. There I attained such a state of concentration that I was not percipient of earth in relation to earth; of water in relation to water; of fire in relation to fire; of air in relation to air; of the base of the infinity of space in relation to the base of the infinity of space; of the base of the infinity of consciousness in relation to the base of the infinity of consciousness; of the base of nothingness in relation to the base of nothingness; of the base of neither-perception-nor-non-perception in relation to the base of neither-perception-nor-non-perception; of this world in relation to this world; of the other world in relation to the other world, but I was still percipient.”

“But of what was the Venerable Sāriputta percipient on that occasion?”

“One perception arose and another perception ceased in me: ‘The cessation of existence is nibbāna; the cessation of existence is nibbāna.’ Just as, when a fire of twigs is burning, one flame arises and another flame ceases, so one perception arose and another perception ceased in me: ‘The cessation of existence is nibbāna; the cessation of existence is nibbāna.’ On that occasion, friend, I was percipient: ‘The cessation of existence is nibbāna.’”

AN 10.11 - Lodging

(Ascetic-minded monks won’t like this sutta. Contrary to popular belief, a kuti which effectively keeps out mosquitos is declared here to be more suitable and conducive to nibbāna than a ramshackle or poorly constructed kuti that doesn’t keep the mosquitos out)

“Bhikkhus, when a bhikkhu who possesses five factors resorts to and uses a lodging that possesses five factors, in no long time, with the destruction of the taints, he might realize for himself with direct knowledge, in this very life, the taintless liberation of mind, liberation by wisdom, and having entered upon it, dwell in it.

“And how, bhikkhus, does a bhikkhu possess five factors?

  1. “Here, a bhikkhu is endowed with faith. He has faith in the enlightenment of the Tathāgata thus: ‘The Blessed One is an arahant, perfectly enlightened, accomplished in true knowledge and conduct, fortunate, knower of the world, unsurpassed trainer of persons to be tamed, teacher of devas and humans, the Enlightened One, the Blessed One.’

  2. “He is seldom ill or afflicted, possessing an even digestion that is neither too cool nor too hot but moderate and suitable for striving.

  3. “He is honest and open, one who reveals himself as he really is to the Teacher and his wise fellow monks.

  4. “He has aroused energy for abandoning unwholesome qualities and acquiring wholesome qualities; he is strong, firm in exertion, not casting off the duty of cultivating wholesome qualities.

  5. “He is wise; he possesses the wisdom that discerns arising and passing away, which is noble and penetrative and leads to the complete destruction of suffering.

“It is in this way that a bhikkhu possesses five factors.

“And how does a lodging possess five factors?

  1. “Here, the lodging is neither too far from a place for alms nor too close, and it possesses a means for going and returning.

  2. “During the day it is not disturbed by people and at night it is quiet and still.

  3. “There is little contact with flies, mosquitoes, wind, the burning sun, and serpents.

  4. “One dwelling in that lodging can easily obtain robes, almsfood, lodging, and medicines and provisions for the sick.

  5. “In that lodging elder bhikkhus are dwelling who are learned, heirs to the heritage, experts on the Dhamma, experts on the discipline, experts on the outlines. He approaches them from time to time and inquires: ‘How is this, Bhante? What is the meaning of this?’ Those venerable ones then disclose to him what has not been disclosed, clear up what is obscure, and dispel his perplexity about numerous perplexing points.

“It is in this way that a lodging possesses five factors.

“When a bhikkhu who possesses these five factors resorts to and uses a lodging that possesses these five factors, in no long time, with the destruction of the taints, he might realize for himself with direct knowledge, in this very life, the taintless liberation of mind, liberation by wisdom, and having entered upon it, dwell in it.”

AN 10.11 - Mental Barrenness

(A rare sutta which the Mahayana mind find problematic, as it would contradict the desirability of intentionally undertaking the Bodhisattva path, which makes continued rebirth an OK, and even praiseworthy thing whatsoever: “he lives the spiritual life aspiring for [rebirth in] a certain order of devas, [thinking]: ‘By this virtuous behavior, observance, austerity, or spiritual life I will be a deva or one [in the retinue] of the devas.’ When he lives the spiritual life aspiring for [rebirth in] a certain order of devas … his mind does not incline to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind does not incline to ardor … and striving, this is the fifth bondage of the mind that he has not eradicated.”)

“Bhikkhus, if any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī has not abandoned five kinds of mental barrenness and eradicated five bondages of the mind, then, whether night or day comes, only deterioration in wholesome qualities and not growth is to be expected for this person.

“What are the five kinds of mental barrenness that he has not abandoned?

  1. “Here, a bhikkhu is perplexed about the Teacher, doubts him, is not convinced about him and does not place confidence in him. When a bhikkhu is perplexed about the Teacher, doubts him, is not convinced about him and does not place confidence in him, his mind does not incline to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind does not incline to ardor … … and striving, this is the first kind of mental barrenness that he has not abandoned.

  2. – 5. “Again, a bhikkhu is perplexed about the Dhamma … perplexed about the Saṅgha … perplexed about the training … is irritated by his fellow monks, displeased with them, aggressive toward them, ill disposed toward them. When a bhikkhu is irritated by his fellow monks, displeased with them, aggressive toward them, ill disposed toward them, his mind does not incline to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind does not incline to ardor … and striving, this is the fifth kind of mental barrenness that he has not abandoned.

“These are the five kinds of mental barrenness that he has not abandoned.

“What are the five bondages of the mind that he has not eradicated?

  1. “Here, a bhikkhu is not devoid of lust for sensual pleasures, not devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for them. When a bhikkhu is not devoid of lust for sensual pleasures, not devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for them, his mind does not incline to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind does not incline to ardor … and striving, this is the first bondage of the mind that he has not eradicated.

  2. – 5. “Again, a bhikkhu is not devoid of lust for the body, not devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for it…. He is not devoid of lust for form, not devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for it…. Having eaten as much as he wants until his belly is full, he is intent upon the pleasure of rest, the pleasure of sloth, the pleasure of sleep … he lives the spiritual life aspiring for rebirth in a certain order of devas, thinking: ‘By this virtuous behavior, observance, austerity, or spiritual life I will be a deva or one in the retinue of the devas.’ When he lives the spiritual life aspiring for rebirth in a certain order of devas … his mind does not incline to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind does not incline to ardor … and striving, this is the fifth bondage of the mind that he has not eradicated.

“These are the five bondages of mind that he has not eradicated.

“If any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī has not abandoned these five kinds of mental barrenness and eradicated these five bondages of the mind, then, whether night or day comes, only deterioration and not growth in wholesome qualities is to be expected for that person. Just as during the dark fortnight, whether night or day comes, the moon only deteriorates in beauty, roundness, and brightness, in diameter and circumference, so too, if any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī has not abandoned these five kinds of mental barrenness … only deterioration … is to be expected for that person.

“Bhikkhus, if any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī has abandoned five kinds of mental barrenness and eradicated five bondages of the mind, then, whether night or day comes, only growth in wholesome qualities and not deterioration is to be expected for that person.

“And what are the five kinds of mental barrenness that he has abandoned?

  1. “Here, a bhikkhu is not perplexed about the Teacher, does not doubt him, is convinced about him and places confidence in him. When a bhikkhu is not perplexed about the Teacher, does not doubt him, is convinced about him and places confidence in him, his mind inclines to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind inclines to ardor … and striving, this is the first kind of mental barrenness that he has abandoned.

  2. – 5. “Again, a bhikkhu is not perplexed about the Dhamma … not perplexed about the Saṅgha … not perplexed about the training … is not irritated by his fellow monks, is pleased with them, not aggressive toward them, well disposed toward them. When a bhikkhu is not irritated by his fellow monks … well disposed toward them, his mind inclines to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind inclines to ardor … and striving, this is the fifth kind of mental barrenness that he has abandoned.

“These are the five kinds of mental barrenness that he has abandoned.

“What are the five bondages of the mind that he has well eradicated?

  1. “Here, a bhikkhu is devoid of lust for sensual pleasures, devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for them. When a bhikkhu is devoid of lust for sensual pleasures, devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for them, his mind inclines to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind inclines to ardor … and striving, this is the first bondage of the mind that he has well eradicated.

  2. – 5. “Again, a bhikkhu is devoid of lust for the body, devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for it…. He is devoid of lust for form, devoid of desire, affection, thirst, passion, and craving for it…. He does not eat as much as he wants until his belly is full nor is he intent upon the pleasure of rest, the pleasure of sloth, the pleasure of sleep…. He does not live the spiritual life aspiring for rebirth in a certain order of devas, thinking: ‘By this virtuous behavior, observance, austerity, or spiritual life I will be a deva or one in the retinue of the devas.’ Since he does not live the spiritual life aspiring for rebirth in a certain order of devas … his mind inclines to ardor, effort, perseverance, and striving. Since his mind inclines to ardor … and striving, this is the fifth bondage of the mind that he has well eradicated.

“These are the five bondages of the mind that he has well eradicated.

“If any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī has abandoned these five kinds of mental barrenness and well eradicated these five bondages of the mind, then, whether night or day comes, only growth in wholesome qualities and not deterioration is to be expected for that person. Just as during the bright fortnight, whether night or day comes, the moon only increases in beauty, roundness, and brightness, in diameter and circumference, so too, if any bhikkhu or bhikkhunī has abandoned these five kinds of mental barrenness and well eradicated these five bondages of the mind, then, whether night or day comes, only growth in wholesome qualities and not deterioration is to be expected for that person.”

AN 10.18 - Protector (2)

(“Traditional” monks might not like this sutta. It’s a rare sutta that spells out that it’s OK, and even proper for Junior monks to correct Senior monks, if they deserve it, and a Senior monk unwilling to hear correction from a Junior monk is blameworthy, see point 4 below:)

“Bhikkhus, live under a protector, not without a protector. One without a protector lives in suffering. There are these ten qualities that serve as a protector. What ten?

  1. “Here, a bhikkhu is virtuous; he dwells restrained by the Pātimokkha, possessed of good conduct and resort, seeing danger in minute faults. Having undertaken the training rules, he trains in them. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu is truly virtuous…. Having undertaken the training rules, he trains in them,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This is a quality that serves as a protector.

  2. “Again, a bhikkhu has learned much, remembers what he has learned, and accumulates what he has learned. Those teachings that are good in the beginning … with the right meaning and phrasing, which proclaim the perfectly complete and pure spiritual life—such teachings as these he has learned much of, retained in mind, recited verbally, investigated mentally, and penetrated well by view. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu has truly learned much … and penetrated well by view,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  3. “Again, a bhikkhu has good friends, good companions, good comrades. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu truly has good friends, good companions, good comrades,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  4. “Again, a bhikkhu is easy to correct and possesses qualities that make him easy to correct; he is patient and receives instruction respectfully. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu is truly easy to correct and possesses qualities that make him easy to correct; he is patient and receives instruction respectfully,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  5. “Again, a bhikkhu is skillful and diligent in attending to the diverse chores that are to be done for his fellow monks; he possesses sound judgment about them in order to carry out and arrange them properly. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu is truly skillful and diligent … in order to carry out and arrange them properly,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  6. “Again, a bhikkhu loves the Dhamma and is pleasing in his assertions, filled with a lofty joy pertaining to the Dhamma and discipline. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu truly loves the Dhamma and is pleasing in his assertions, filled with a lofty joy pertaining to the Dhamma and discipline,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  7. “Again, a bhikkhu has aroused energy for abandoning unwholesome qualities and acquiring wholesome qualities; he is strong, firm in exertion, not casting off the duty of cultivating wholesome qualities. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu truly has aroused energy … … not casting off the duty of cultivating wholesome qualities,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  8. “Again, a bhikkhu is content with any kind of robe, almsfood, lodging, and medicines and provisions for the sick. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu truly is content with any kind of robe, almsfood, lodging, and medicines and provisions for the sick,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  9. “Again, a bhikkhu is mindful, possessing supreme mindfulness and alertness, one who remembers and recollects what was done and said long ago. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu truly is mindful, possessing supreme mindfulness and alertness, one who remembers and recollects what was done and said long ago,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

  10. “Again, a bhikkhu is wise; he possesses the wisdom that discerns arising and passing away, which is noble and penetrative and leads to the complete destruction of suffering. Having considered: ‘This bhikkhu truly is wise; he possesses the wisdom that discerns arising and passing away, which is noble and penetrative and leads to the complete destruction of suffering,’ the elder bhikkhus, those of middle standing, and the junior bhikkhus think he should be corrected and instructed. Since they all have compassion for him, only growth in wholesome qualities and not decline is to be expected for him. This, too, is a quality that serves as a protector.

“Bhikkhus, live under a protector, not without a protector. One without a protector lives in suffering. These are the ten qualities that serve as a protector.”

AN 10.23 - Body

“Bhikkhus, there are things to be abandoned by body, not by speech. There are things to be abandoned by speech, not by body. There are things to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom.

“And what, bhikkhus, are the things to be abandoned by body, not by speech? Here, a bhikkhu has committed a particular unwholesome deed with the body. His wise fellow monks investigate him and say thus: ‘You have committed a particular unwholesome deed with the body. It would really be good if you would abandon bodily misconduct and develop bodily good conduct.’ When his wise fellow monks investigate him and speak to him, he abandons bodily misconduct and develops bodily good conduct. These are called things to be abandoned by body, not by speech.

“And what are the things to be abandoned by speech, not by body? Here, a bhikkhu has committed a particular unwholesome deed by speech. His wise fellow monks investigate him and say thus: ‘You have committed a particular unwholesome deed by speech. It would really be good if you would abandon verbal misconduct and develop verbal good conduct.’ When his wise fellow monks investigate him and speak to him, he abandons verbal misconduct and develops verbal good conduct. These are called things to be abandoned by speech, not by body.

“And what are the things to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom? Greed is to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom. Hatred … Delusion … Anger … Hostility … Denigration … Insolence … Miserliness is to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom.

“Evil envy, bhikkhus, is to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom. And what is evil envy? Here, a householder or householder’s son is prospering in wealth or grain, in silver or gold. A slave or dependent might think of him: ‘Oh, may this householder or householder’s son not prosper in wealth or grain, in silver or gold!’ Or else an ascetic or brahmin gains robes, almsfood, lodging, and medicines and provisions for the sick. Another ascetic or brahmin might think of him: ‘Oh, may this venerable one not gain robes, almsfood, lodging, and medicines and provisions for the sick!’ This is called evil envy. Evil envy is to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom.

“Evil desire, bhikkhus, is to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom. And what is evil desire? Here, one without faith desires: ‘Let them know me as one endowed with faith.’ An immoral person desires: ‘Let them know me as virtuous.’ One with little learning desires: ‘Let them know me as learned.’ One who delights in company desires: ‘Let them know me as solitary.’ One who is lazy desires: ‘Let them know me as energetic.’ One who is muddle-minded desires: ‘Let them know me as mindful.’ One who is unconcentrated desires: ‘Let them know me as concentrated.’ One who is unwise desires: ‘Let them know me as wise.’ One whose taints are not destroyed desires: ‘Let them know me as one whose taints are destroyed.’ This is called evil desire. Evil desire is to be abandoned neither by body nor by speech but by having repeatedly seen with wisdom.

“If, bhikkhus, greed overcomes that bhikkhu and continues on; if hatred … delusion … anger … hostility … denigration … insolence … miserliness … evil envy … evil desire overcomes that bhikkhu and continues on, he should be understood thus: ‘This venerable one does not understand in such a way that he would have no greed; thus greed overcomes him and continues on. This venerable one does not understand in such a way that he would have no hatred … no delusion … no anger … no hostility … no denigration … no insolence … no miserliness … no evil envy … no evil desire; thus evil desire overcomes him and continues on.’

“If, bhikkhus, greed does not overcome that bhikkhu and continue on; if hatred … delusion … anger … hostility … denigration … insolence … miserliness … evil envy … evil desire does not overcome that bhikkhu and continue on, he should be understood thus: ‘This venerable one understands in such a way that he would have no greed; thus greed does not overcome him and continue on. This venerable one understands in such a way that he would have no hatred … no delusion … no anger … no hostility … no denigration … no insolence … no miserliness … no evil envy … no evil desire; thus evil desire does not overcome him and continue on.’”

AN 10.37 - Schism (1)

“Bhante, it is said: ‘Schism in the Saṅgha, schism in the Saṅgha.’ How, Bhante, is there schism in the Saṅgha?”

“Here, Upāli,

  1. bhikkhus explain non-Dhamma as Dhamma,

  2. and Dhamma as non-Dhamma.

  3. They explain non-discipline as discipline, and

  4. discipline as non-discipline.

  5. They explain what has not been stated and uttered by the Tathāgata as having been stated and uttered by him, and

  6. what has been stated and uttered by the Tathāgata as not having been stated and uttered by him.

  7. They explain what has not been practiced by the Tathāgata as having been practiced by him, and

  8. what has been practiced by the Tathāgata as not having been practiced by him.

  9. They explain what has not been prescribed by the Tathāgata as having been prescribed by him, and

  10. what has been prescribed by the Tathāgata as not having been prescribed by him.

On these ten grounds they withdraw and go apart. They perform legal acts separately and recite the Pātimokkha separately. It is in this way, Upāli, that there is schism in the Saṅgha.”

AN 10.39 - Ānanda (1)

Then the Venerable Ānanda approached the Blessed One, paid homage to him, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Bhante, it is said: ‘Schism in the Saṅgha, schism in the Saṅgha.’ How is there schism in the Saṅgha?”

“Here, Ānanda, (1) bhikkhus explain non-Dhamma as Dhamma … as in 10.37 … and (10) what has been prescribed by the Tathāgata as not having been prescribed by him. On these ten grounds they withdraw and go apart. They perform legal acts separately and recite the Pātimokkha separately. It is in this way, Ānanda, that there is schism in the Saṅgha.” “But, Bhante, when one causes schism in a harmonious Saṅgha, what does one generate?”

“One generates evil lasting for an eon, Ānanda.”

“But, Bhante, what is that evil lasting for an eon?”

“One is tormented in hell for an eon, Ānanda.”

One who causes schism in the Saṅgha is bound for misery,
bound for hell, to abide there for an eon
Delighting in factions, established in non-Dhamma,
he falls away from security from bondage.
Having caused schism in a harmonious Saṅgha,
he is tormented in hell for an eon.

AN 10.40 - Ānanda (2)

“Bhante, it is said: ‘Concord in the Saṅgha, concord in the Saṅgha.’ How is there concord in the Saṅgha?”

“Here, Ānanda, (1) bhikkhus explain non-Dhamma as non-Dhamma … as in 10:38 … and (10) what has been prescribed by the Tathāgata as having been prescribed by him. On these ten grounds they do not withdraw and go apart. They do not perform legal acts separately or recite the Pātimokkha separately. It is in this way, Ānanda, that there is concord in the Saṅgha.”

“But, Bhante, when one reconciles a divided Saṅgha, what does one generate?”

“One generates divine merit, Ānanda.”

“But, Bhante, what is divine merit?”

“One rejoices in heaven for an eon, Ānanda.”

Pleasant is concord in the Saṅgha,
and the mutual help of those who live in concord.
Delighting in concord, established in Dhamma,
one does not fall away from security from bondage.
Having brought concord to the Saṅgha,
one rejoices in heaven for an eon.

AN 10.41 - Arguments

Then Venerable Upāli went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“What is the cause, sir, what is the reason, why arguments, quarrels, and disputes arise in the Saṅgha, and the mendicants don’t live happily?”

“Upāli, it’s when a mendicant explains what is not the teaching as the teaching, and what is the teaching as not the teaching. They explain what is not the training as the training, and what is the training as not the training. They explain what was not spoken and stated by the Realized One as spoken and stated by the Realized One, and what was spoken and stated by the Realized One as not spoken and stated by the Realized One. They explain what was not practiced by the Realized One as practiced by the Realized One, and what was practiced by the Realized One as not practiced by the Realized One. They explain what was not prescribed by the Realized One as prescribed by the Realized One, and what was prescribed by the Realized One as not prescribed by the Realized One. This is the cause, this is the reason why arguments, quarrels, and disputes arise in the Saṅgha, and the mendicants don’t live happily.”

AN 10.43 - Roots of Arguments (2nd)

“Sir, how many roots of arguments are there?”

“Upāli, there are ten roots of arguments. What ten? It’s when a mendicant explains what is not an offense as an offense, and what is an offense as not an offense. They explain a light offense as a serious offense, and a serious offense as a light offense. They explain an offense committed with corrupt intention as an offense not committed with corrupt intention, and an offense not committed with corrupt intention as an offense committed with corrupt intention. They explain an offense requiring rehabilitation as an offense not requiring rehabilitation, and an offense not requiring rehabilitation as an offense requiring rehabilitation. They explain an offense with redress as an offense without redress, and an offense without redress as an offense with redress. These are the ten roots of arguments.”

AN 10.44 - At Kusināra

(Another 2 checklists for monks before admonishing another monk. In AN 5.167, the second checklist of 5 things below also appears)

At one time the Buddha was staying near Kusināra, in the Forest of Offerings. There the Buddha addressed the mendicants, “Mendicants!”

“Venerable sir,” they replied. The Buddha said this:

“Mendicants, a mendicant who wants to accuse another should first check five things in themselves and establish five things in themselves. What five things should they check in themselves? A mendicant who wants to accuse another should check this:

  1. Is my bodily behavior pure? Do I have pure bodily behavior that is impeccable and irreproachable? Is this thing found in me or not?’ If it’s not, there will be people who say: ‘Come on, venerable, train your own bodily behavior first.’ Furthermore, a mendicant who wants to accuse another should check this:

  2. Is my verbal behavior pure? Do I have pure verbal behavior that is impeccable and irreproachable? Is this thing found in me or not?’ If it’s not, there will be people who say: ‘Come on, venerable, train your own verbal behavior first.’ Furthermore, a mendicant who wants to accuse another should check this:

  3. Is my heart established in love for my spiritual companions, without resentment? Is this thing found in me or not?’ If it’s not, there will be people who say: ‘Come on, venerable, establish your heart in love for your spiritual companions first.’ Furthermore, a mendicant who wants to accuse another should check this:

  4. Am I very learned, remembering and keeping what I’ve learned? These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. Am I very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and comprehending them theoretically? Is this thing found in me or not?’ If it’s not, there will be people who say: ‘Come on, venerable, memorize the scriptures first.’ Furthermore, a mendicant who wants to accuse another should check this:

  5. Have both monastic codes been passed down to me in detail, well analyzed, well mastered, and well judged in both the rules and accompanying material? Is this thing found in me or not?’ If it’s not, there will be people who say: ‘Come on, venerable, train in the code of conduct first.’ These are the five things they should check in themselves.

What five things should they establish in themselves?

  1. I will speak at the right time, not at the wrong time.

  2. I will speak truthfully, not falsely.

  3. I will speak gently, not harshly.

  4. I will speak beneficially, not harmfully.

  5. I will speak lovingly, not from secret hate.

These are the five things they should establish in themselves. A mendicant who wants to accuse another should first check these five things in themselves and establish these five things in themselves.”

AN 10.50 - Arguments

(Sometimes called the “10 Principles of Cordiality”)

At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. Now at that time, after the meal, on return from alms-round, several mendicants sat together in the meeting hall. They were arguing, quarreling, and disputing, wounding each other with barbed words.

Then in the late afternoon, the Buddha came out of retreat and went to the assembly hall. He sat down on the seat spread out, and addressed the mendicants: “Mendicants, what were you sitting talking about just now? What conversation was unfinished?”

“Sir, after the meal, on return from alms-round, we sat together in the meeting hall, arguing, quarreling, and disputing, wounding each other with barbed words.”

“Mendicants, this is not appropriate for you gentlemen who have gone forth in faith from the lay life to homelessness.

There are ten warm-hearted qualities that make for fondness and respect, conducing to inclusion, harmony, and unity, without quarreling. What ten?

  1. Firstly, a mendicant is ethical, restrained in the monastic code, conducting themselves well and seeking alms in suitable places. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken. When a mendicant is ethical, this warm-hearted quality makes for fondness and respect, conducing to inclusion, harmony, and unity, without quarreling.

  2. Furthermore, a mendicant is very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and comprehending them theoretically. …

  3. Furthermore, a mendicant has good friends, companions, and associates. …

  4. Furthermore, a mendicant is easy to admonish, having qualities that make them easy to admonish. They’re patient, and take instruction respectfully. …

  5. Furthermore, a mendicant is deft and tireless in a diverse spectrum of duties for their spiritual companions, understanding how to go about things in order to complete and organize the work. …

  6. Furthermore, a mendicant loves the teachings and is a delight to converse with, being full of joy in the teaching and training. …

  7. Furthermore, a mendicant lives with energy roused up for giving up unskillful qualities and embracing skillful qualities. They are strong, staunchly vigorous, not slacking off when it comes to developing skillful qualities. …

  8. Furthermore, a mendicant is content with any kind of robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicines and supplies for the sick. …

  9. Furthermore, a mendicant is mindful. They have utmost mindfulness and alertness, and can remember and recall what was said and done long ago. …

  10. Furthermore, a mendicant is wise. They have the wisdom of arising and passing away which is noble, penetrative, and leads to the complete ending of suffering. When a mendicant is wise, this warm-hearted quality makes for fondness and respect, helping the Saṅgha to live in harmony and unity, without quarreling.

These ten warm-hearted qualities make for fondness and respect, conducing to inclusion, harmony, and unity, without quarreling.”

AN 10.75 - With Migasālā

At one time the Buddha was staying near Sāvatthī in Jeta’s Grove, Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. Then Venerable Ānanda robed up in the morning and, taking his bowl and robe, went to the home of the laywoman Migasālā, where he sat on the seat spread out. Then the laywoman Migasālā went up to Ānanda, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Sir, Ānanda, how on earth are we supposed to understand the teaching taught by the Buddha, when the chaste and the unchaste are both reborn in exactly the same place in the next life? My father Purāṇa was celibate, set apart, avoiding the common practice of sex. When he passed away the Buddha declared that he was a once-returner, who was reborn in the company of the Joyful Gods. But my uncle Isidatta was not celibate; he lived content with his wife. When he passed away the Buddha declared that he was also a once-returner, who was reborn in the company of the Joyful Gods.

How on earth are we supposed to understand the teaching taught by the Buddha, when the chaste and the unchaste are both reborn in exactly the same place in the next life?”

“You’re right, sister, but that’s how the Buddha declared it.”

Then Ānanda, after receiving almsfood at Migasālā’s house, rose from his seat and left. Then after the meal, on his return from alms-round, Ānanda went to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and told him what had happened.

“Ānanda, who is this laywoman Migasālā, a foolish incompetent matron, with a matron’s wit? And who is it that knows how to assess individuals?

These ten people are found in the world. What ten? Take a certain person who is unethical. And they don’t truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that unethical conduct ceases without anything left over. And they’ve not listened or learned or comprehended theoretically or found even temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a lower place, not a higher. They’re going to a lower place, not a higher.

Take a certain person who is unethical. But they truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that unethical conduct ceases without anything left over. And they have listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a higher place, not a lower. They’re going to a higher place, not a lower.

Judgmental people compare them, saying: ‘This one has just the same qualities as the other, so why is one worse and one better?’ This will be for their lasting harm and suffering.

In this case, the person who is unethical, but truly understands the freedom of heart … and has listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom is better and finer than the other person. Why is that? Because the stream of the teaching carries them along. But who knows the difference between them except a Realized One? So, Ānanda, don’t be judgmental about people. Don’t pass judgment on people. Those who pass judgment on people harm themselves. I, or someone like me, may pass judgment on people.

Take a certain person who is ethical. But they don’t truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that ethical conduct ceases without anything left over. And they’ve not listened or learned or comprehended theoretically or found even temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a lower place, not a higher. They’re going to a lower place, not a higher.

Take a certain person who is ethical. And they truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that ethical conduct ceases without anything left over. And they’ve listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a higher place, not a lower. They’re going to a higher place, not a lower.

Judgmental people compare them … I, or someone like me, may pass judgment on people.

Take a certain person who is very lustful. And they don’t truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that lust ceases without anything left over. And they’ve not listened or learned or comprehended theoretically or found even temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a lower place, not a higher. They’re going to a lower place, not a higher.

Take a certain person who is very lustful. But they truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that lust ceases without anything left over. And they’ve listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a higher place, not a lower. They’re going to a higher place, not a lower.

Judgmental people compare them … I, or someone like me, may pass judgment on people.

Take a certain person who is irritable. And they don’t truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that anger ceases without anything left over. And they’ve not listened or learned or comprehended theoretically or found even temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a lower place, not a higher. They’re going to a lower place, not a higher.

Take a certain person who is irritable. But they truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that anger ceases without anything left over. And they’ve listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a higher place, not a lower. They’re going to a higher place, not a lower.

Judgmental people compare them … I, or someone like me, may pass judgment on people.

Take a certain person who is restless. And they don’t truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that restlessness ceases without anything left over. And they’ve not listened or learned or comprehended theoretically or found even temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a lower place, not a higher. They’re going to a lower place, not a higher.

Take a certain person who is restless. But they truly understand the freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom where that restlessness ceases without anything left over. And they’ve listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re headed for a higher place, not a lower. They’re going to a higher place, not a lower.

Judgmental people compare them, saying: ‘This one has just the same qualities as the other, so why is one worse and one better?’ This will be for their lasting harm and suffering.

In this case the person who is restless, but truly understands the freedom of heart … and has listened and learned and comprehended theoretically and found at least temporary freedom is better and finer than the other person. Why is that? Because the stream of the teaching carries them along. But who knows the difference between them except a Realized One? So, Ānanda, don’t be judgmental about people. Don’t pass judgment on people. Those who pass judgment on people harm themselves. I, or someone like me, may pass judgment on people.

Who is this laywoman Migasālā, a foolish incompetent matron, with a matron’s wit? And who is it that knows how to assess individuals? These ten people are found in the world.

If Isidatta had achieved Purāṇa’s level of ethical conduct, Purāṇa could not have even known Isidatta’s destination. And if Purāṇa had achieved Isidatta’s level of wisdom, Isidatta could not have even known Purāṇa’s destination. So both individuals were lacking in one respect.”

AN 10.84 - Declaration

(A rare mention of the phrase “stopping half-way”, as in “When there is still more to be done, this venerable stopped half-way after achieving some insignificant distinction. But stopping half-way means decline in the teaching and training proclaimed by the Realized One.” This might be problematic to the Mahayana, and the Bodhisattva vow.)

There Venerable Mahāmoggallāna addressed the mendicants: “Reverends, mendicants!”

“Reverend,” they replied. Venerable Mahāmoggallāna said this:

“Take a mendicant who declares enlightenment: ‘I understand: “Rebirth is ended, the spiritual journey has been completed, what had to be done has been done, there is no return to any state of existence.”’ They’re pursued, pressed, and grilled by the Realized One, or by one of his disciples who has the absorptions, and is skilled in attainments, in the minds of others, and in the ways of another’s mind. Grilled in this way they get stuck or lose their way. They fall to ruin and disaster.

The Realized One or one of his disciples comprehends their mind and investigates: ‘Why does this venerable declare enlightenment, saying:

“I understand: ‘Rebirth is ended, the spiritual journey has been completed, what had to be done has been done, there is no return to any state of existence.’?”’

They understand:

‘This venerable gets irritable, and often lives with a heart full of anger. But being full of anger means decline in the teaching and training proclaimed by the Realized One.

This venerable is hostile …

prone to offensiveness …

contemptuous …

jealous …

stingy …

devious …

deceitful …

This venerable has bad desires, and often lives with a heart full of desire. But being full of desire means decline in the teaching and training proclaimed by the Realized One.

When there is still more to be done, this venerable stopped half-way after achieving some insignificant distinction. But stopping half-way means decline in the teaching and training proclaimed by the Realized One.’

It’s not possible for a mendicant to achieve growth, improvement, or maturity in this teaching and training without giving up these ten qualities. It is possible for a mendicant to achieve growth, improvement, or maturity in this teaching and training after giving up these ten qualities.”

AN 10.106 - Wearing Away

(Gradual path…)

“Mendicants, there are these ten grounds for wearing away. What ten?

  1. For one of right view, wrong view is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong view are worn away. And because of right view, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  2. For one of right thought, wrong thought is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong thought are worn away. And because of right thought, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  3. For one of right speech, wrong speech is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong speech are worn away. And because of right speech, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  4. For one of right action, wrong action is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong action are worn away. And because of right action, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  5. For one of right livelihood, wrong livelihood is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong livelihood are worn away. And because of right livelihood, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  6. For one of right effort, wrong effort is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong effort are worn away. And because of right effort, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  7. For one of right mindfulness, wrong mindfulness is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong mindfulness are worn away. And because of right mindfulness, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  8. For one of right immersion, wrong immersion is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong immersion are worn away. And because of right immersion, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  9. For one of right knowledge, wrong knowledge is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong knowledge are worn away. And because of right knowledge, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

  10. For one of right freedom, wrong freedom is worn away. And the many bad, unskillful qualities that arise because of wrong freedom are worn away. And because of right freedom, many skillful qualities are fully developed.

These are the ten grounds for wearing away.”

AN 11.14 - With Subhūti

(The third monk’s name, “Saddha”, is the Pali word often translated as “faith”. Note that of all the 11 manifestations of faith listed, none of them are “bahkti“-like, in the Hindu sense of devotionalism towards a deity. The Buddha doesn’t praise offerings of flowers, candles, incense, etc., as any sort of example of what faith looks like.)

And then Venerable Subhūti together with the mendicant Saddha went up to the Buddha, bowed, and sat down to one side. The Buddha said to him, “Subhūti, what is the name of this mendicant?”

“Sir, the name of this mendicant is Saddha. He is the son of the layman Saddha, and has gone forth out of faith from the lay life to homelessness.”

“Well, I hope this mendicant Saddha exhibits the outcomes of faith.”

“Now is the time, Blessed One! Now is the time, Holy One! Let the Buddha to speak on the outcomes of faith. Now I will find out whether or not this mendicant Saddha exhibits the outcomes of faith.”

“Well then, Subhūti, listen and pay close attention, I will speak.”

“Yes, sir,” Subhūti replied. The Buddha said this:

“Firstly, a mendicant is ethical, restrained in the monastic code, conducting themselves well and seeking alms in suitable places. Seeing danger in the slightest fault, they keep the rules they’ve undertaken. When a mendicant is ethical, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant is very learned, remembering and keeping what they’ve learned. These teachings are good in the beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, meaningful and well-phrased, describing a spiritual practice that’s entirely full and pure. They are very learned in such teachings, remembering them, reinforcing them by recitation, mentally scrutinizing them, and comprehending them theoretically. When a mendicant is learned, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant has good friends, companions, and associates. When a mendicant has good friends, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant is easy to admonish, having qualities that make them easy to admonish. They’re patient, and take instruction respectfully. When a mendicant is easy to admonish, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant is deft and tireless in a diverse spectrum of duties for their spiritual companions, understanding how to go about things in order to complete and organize the work. When a mendicant is skilled and tireless in a diverse spectrum of duties, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant loves the teachings and is a delight to converse with, being full of joy in the teaching and training. When a mendicant loves the teachings, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant lives with energy roused up for giving up unskillful qualities and embracing skillful qualities. They are strong, staunchly vigorous, not slacking off when it comes to developing skillful qualities. When a mendicant is energetic, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant gets the four absorptions—blissful meditations in the present life that belong to the higher mind—when they want, without trouble or difficulty. When a mendicant gets the four absorptions, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant recollects many kinds of past lives. That is: one, two, three, four, five, ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, a hundred, a thousand, a hundred thousand rebirths; many eons of the world contracting, many eons of the world expanding, many eons of the world contracting and expanding. They remember: ‘There, I was named this, my clan was that, I looked like this, and that was my food. This was how I felt pleasure and pain, and that was how my life ended. When I passed away from that place I was reborn somewhere else. There, too, I was named this, my clan was that, I looked like this, and that was my food. This was how I felt pleasure and pain, and that was how my life ended. When I passed away from that place I was reborn here.’ And so they recollect their many kinds of past lives, with features and details. When a mendicant recollects many kinds of past lives, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, with clairvoyance that is purified and superhuman, a mendicant sees sentient beings passing away and being reborn—inferior and superior, beautiful and ugly, in a good place or a bad place. They understand how sentient beings are reborn according to their deeds. ‘These dear beings did bad things by way of body, speech, and mind. They spoke ill of the noble ones; they had wrong view; and they acted out of that wrong view. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell. These dear beings, however, did good things by way of body, speech, and mind. They never spoke ill of the noble ones; they had right view; and they acted out of that right view. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re reborn in a good place, a heavenly realm.’ And so, with clairvoyance that is purified and superhuman, they see sentient beings passing away and being reborn—inferior and superior, beautiful and ugly, in a good place or a bad place. They understand how sentient beings are reborn according to their deeds. When a mendicant has clairvoyance that is purified and superhuman, this is an outcome of faith.

Furthermore, a mendicant has realized the undefiled freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom in this very life, and lives having realized it with their own insight due to the ending of defilements. When a mendicant has ended the defilements, this is an outcome of faith.”

When he said this, Venerable Subhūti said to the Buddha:

“Sir, the outcomes of faith for a faithful person that the Buddha speaks of are found in this mendicant; he does exhibit them.

This mendicant is ethical …

This mendicant is learned …

This mendicant has good friends …

This mendicant is easy to admonish …

This mendicant is skilled and tireless in a diverse spectrum of duties …

This mendicant loves the teachings …

This mendicant is energetic …

This mendicant gets the four absorptions …

This mendicant recollects their many kinds of past lives …

This mendicant has clairvoyance that is purified and surpasses the human …

This mendicant has ended the defilements …

The outcomes of faith for a faithful person that the Buddha speaks of are found in this mendicant; he does exhibit them.”

“Good, good, Subhūti! So, Subhūti, you should live together with this mendicant Saddha. And when you want to see the Realized One, you should come together with him.”

Next: Part 5 is here.