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Samyutta Nikaya XXXV.127

Bharadvaja Sutta

About Bharadvaja


On one occasion Ven. Pindola Bharadvaja was staying in Kosambi at Ghosita's monastery. Then King Udena went to him and, on arrival, exchanged courteous greetings with him. After this exchange of friendly greetings & courtesies, the king sat to one side. As he was sitting there he said to Ven. Pindola Bharadvaja: "What is the reason, master Bharadvaja, what is the cause why young monks -- black-haired, endowed with the blessings of youth in the first stage of life -- without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives?"

"Great king, this was said by the Blessed One who knows & sees, worthy and rightly self-awakened: 'Come now, monks: with regard to women who are old enough to be your mother, establish the attitude you would have toward your mother. With regard to women who are old enough to be your sister, establish the attitude you'd have toward a sister. With regard to women who are young enough to be your daughter, establish the attitude you'd have toward a daughter.' This is one reason, this is one cause, great king, why young monks -- black-haired, endowed with the blessings of youth in the first stage of life -- without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives."

"The mind is unruly, master Bharadvaja. Sometimes thoughts of greed arise even for women who are old enough to be your mother...your sister...young enough to be your daughter. Is there another reason, another cause, why young monks...without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives?"

"Great king, this was said by the Blessed One who knows & sees, worthy and rightly self-awakened: 'Come now, monks: reflect on this very body, from the soles of the feet on up, from the crown of the head on down, surrounded by skin, full of all sorts of unclean things: "In this body there are head hairs, body hairs, nails, teeth, skin, flesh, tendons, bones, bone marrow, kidneys, heart, liver, pleura, spleen, lungs, large intestines, small intestines, gorge, feces, bile, phlegm, pus, blood, sweat, fat, tears, skin-oil, saliva, mucus, fluid in the joints, urine."' This too is a reason, this too is a cause, great king, why young monks -- black-haired, endowed with the blessings of youth in the first stage of life -- without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives."

"For those who are developed in terms of bodily action, developed in terms of virtue, developed in terms of the mind, developed in terms of discernment, master Bharadvaja, that isn't hard to do. But for those who are undeveloped in terms of bodily action, undeveloped in terms of virtue, undeveloped in terms of the mind, undeveloped in terms of discernment, that is hard to do. Sometimes when one thinks, 'Let's regard this as unattractive,' it actually comes to be attractive. Is there another reason, another cause, why young monks...without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives?"

"Great king, this was said by the Blessed One who knows & sees, worthy and rightly self-awakened: 'Come now, monks: Keep guarding the doors to your sense faculties. On seeing a form with the eye, do not grasp at any theme or variations by which -- if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the eye -- evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice with restraint. Guard the faculty of the eye. Achieve restraint with regard to the faculty of the eye.

"'On hearing a sound with the ear....

"'On smelling an aroma with the nose....

"'On tasting a flavor with the tongue....

"'On feeling a tactile sensation with the body....

"'On cognizing an idea with the intellect, do not grasp at any theme or variations by which -- if you were to dwell without restraint over the faculty of the intellect -- evil, unskillful qualities such as greed or distress might assail you. Practice with restraint. Guard the faculty of the intellect. Achieve restraint with regard to the faculty of the intellect.'

"This too is a reason, this too is a cause, great king, why young monks -- black-haired, endowed with the blessings of youth in the first stage of life -- without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives."

"Amazing, master Bharadvaja! Stupendous! How well that has been said by the Blessed One who knows & sees, worthy and rightly self-awakened! This is the very reason, this the very cause, why young monks -- black-haired, endowed with the blessings of youth in the first stage of life -- without having played with sensual pleasures nevertheless follow the lifelong chaste life, perfect & pure, and make it last their entire lives. I myself, master Bharadvaja: whenever I enter the inner apartments of the palace unguarded in body, unguarded in speech, unguarded in mind, with mindfulness unestablished and my senses unrestrained, I'm overcome with thoughts of greed. But whenever I enter the inner apartments of the palace guarded in body, guarded in speech, guarded in mind, with mindfulness established and my senses restrained, then I'm not.

"Magnificent, master Bharadvaja! Magnificent! In many ways has master Bharadvaja made the Dhamma clear -- just as if he were to place upright what has been overturned, to reveal what has been hidden, to point out the way to one who is lost, or to set out a lamp in the darkness so that those with eyes might see forms. I go to the Blessed One for refuge, to the Dhamma, & to the community of monks. May master Bharadvaja remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge from this day forward, for life."

Source: ATI - For Free Distribution Only, as a Gift of Dhamma.

Dhamma Essay:
Aims of Buddhist Education by Bhikkhu Bodhi


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