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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sitagu Donation Ceremony

သီတဂူ အာယုဒါန အလွဴေတာ္

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Mahasatipatthãna Sutta

While the Buddha was sojourning through the market town known as Kammãsa dhamma, in the Kuru country, he addressed the Bhikkhus thus, "Bhikkhus, this is the one and only way for the purification (of the minds) of beings, for overcoming sorrow and lamentation, for the complete destruction of (physical) pain and (mental) distress, for attainment of the noble (ariya) Magga, and for the realization of Nibbãna. That (only way) is the practice of the four methods of steadfast Mindfulness (Satipatthãna)."
These four Methods of steadfast Mindfulness are the contemplation of the body, contemplation of feeling (sensation), contemplation of the mind, and contemplation of the Dhamma, with constant awareness.
Kãyãnupassanã (awareness of the Body) : Here the Bhikkhu should either go to a forest, or beneath a tree, or to an empty, solitary place and then sit cross-legged, keeping the body erect, and the mind alert and awake. With constant awareness he inhales and with constant awareness he exhales. This process is called Anãpãna-Sati.
Again he should be fully aware when he is walking, sitting down, and standing up. Whatever position he is in, he should be constantly aware of it, as it is.
Again he should constantly be aware when he advances. He should be aware when he looks straight or sideways. He should be fully aware when he contracts or straightens his arms and legs. He should be constantly aware while defecating and urinating. In walking, standing up, sitting down, lying, awakening from sleep, in talking, in keeping silent, and doing such things, he should be fully aware of what he is doing.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

16. Mahaparinibbana Sutta

When the Buddha was dwelling at Gijjhakuta in Rajagriha, Ajatasatru, the King of Magadha, sent his minister Vassakara to the Blessed One for his council regarding the King’s intended invasion of the Vajja country. The Buddha did not give any direct answer to the minister but indirectly hinted at the invicibility of the Vajjis. This was on the occasion of the preaching of seven invincible rules which were applicable both to the cohesion of the Vajji Republic and the Sangha of the Bhikkhus.
The Buddha drew the attention of Ven. Ananda to the seven invincible Virtues or Norms (Aparihaniya Dhammas) which the Vijjis were possessed of. He further explained the five categories of these Dhammas, each having seven-fold feature which the Bhikkhus are required to be endowed with, also adding. One more category having six-fold feature. The possession of these Dhammas, the Buddha said, would lead them to their furtherance, not to their fall.
Therefrom the Buddha went to Ambalatthika garden. There, too, he taught, as in Rajagriha, the fruits and merits of conduct (Sila), meditation(Samadhi) and Wisdom (Prajna), which would influence and completely relieve the mind from defilements.
Thereupon the Buddha went from Rajagriha to Ambalatthika garden, where he preached a sermon to the Bhikkhus on the merits of a moral life and the failings of an immoral one, culminating in the final precept.
From there, the Buddha came over to the mango-grave of Pavarika at Nalanda. There, Venerable Sariputta appoached him and proclaimed with a lion’s roar that there was none other than the Blessed One who is endowed with the graduated knowledge concerning Enlightenment. He however admitted that he had said so not entirely on the basis of the knowledge which is obtained by inference, but from personal experience.
From Nalanda the Buddha went to Pataligama. There he preached to all his disciples five defects of an immoral life and five qualities of a moral one. At that time, Sunidha and Vassakara, the chief ministers of Magadha were building a fortress at Pataligama in order to prevent the Vajjis from encroachment. They invited the Buddha and his disciples for meals at their residence. After the meals, they followed him and named the gate through which he passed on as the ‘Gotama Gate’ and the ford on which he crossed the Ganges the ‘Gotama Tirtha.’
Reaching the other side of the Ganges, the Buddha stayed at Kotigama. There he preached on the importance of the four noble truths, due to the ignorance of which one reverts to the round of rebirths. Due to knowledge of these four truths, one attains liberation from the bondage of the world of rebirths.
From Kotigama the Buddha came to Natika village. There he told of the destiny of the bhikkhus, bhikkhunies and other lay disciples who had already passed to the other world. These destiny are said to be situated in the other world, where the departed ones dwell after their decease from this material world. He was evidently tired of talking about such abodes of his departed disciples and hence preaches the mirror of Dhamma, which would enable anyone, desirous of knowing the abodes of the departed ones in the other world, to know such abodes by themselves.
Such destiny chiefly are those of hell, those of beasts, those of spirits (Petas) and those of the lower and higher stages. These categories of abodes in the next world after one’s decease shows that these abodes fall under varied stages of development or degradation. By this mirror of Dhamma one may also know if one has reached a stage towards enlightenment.
The Buddha went from Natika to Vesali. There he preached on the topic of memory and comprehension of movement. Ambapali, the courtesan of the city of Vesali, invited the Buddha with the entire Sangha for a grand dinner the next day. The Buddha accepted it. The nobles of Vesali offered her millions of rupees, if she would sell this opportunity to them, but she would not do so for any price. She donated her mango grove to the Buddha and his Sangha.