Vinaya Pitaka (1): The Analysis of Monks’ Rules (Bhikkhu-vibhanga)

by I. B. Horner | 2014 | 345,334 words | ISBN-13: 9781921842160

The English translation of the Bhikkhu-vibhanga: the first part of the Suttavibhanga, which itself is the first book of the Pali Vinaya Pitaka, one of the three major ‘baskets’ of Therevada canonical literature. It is a collection of rules for Buddhist monks. The English translation of the Vinaya-pitaka (first part, bhikkhu-vibhanga) contains many...

Variant numbering for bhikkhunī rules

One area of difficulty is the numbering of the bhikkhunī rules. The nuns incorporate many of the monks’ rules, but these are not marked in the Pali text in any way; we only know the full list of nuns’ rules from the commentaries and the independent Bhikkhunī Pātimokkha texts. In most cases this does not affect the numbering. The Sekhiyas and Adhikaraṇasamathas are identical for monks and nuns. The Pātidesanīyas are, on the other hand, completely different so there is no overlap. With the Pācittiyas and the Nissaggiya Pācittiyas, the nuns’ rules are listed at the start, and the monks’ rules added after, so they do not affect the numbering.

However, in the case of the Pārājikas and Saṅghādisesas the numbering of the nuns’ rules is affected by the inclusion of the relevant monks’ rules. The numbering in Horner’s text, following the indications at the end of each rule, ignored the monks’ rules and simply listed the nuns’ rules in sequence as found in the Pali. However, this will not work when incorporated as a combined edition on SuttaCentral, where each number must be unique. I have therefore changed the numbering of the relevant rules for nuns as follows.

Table 3: Changes in numbering of bhikkhunī rules
Horner SuttaCentral
Bi-Pj.1 Bi-Pj.5
Bi-Pj.2 Bi-Pj.6
Bi-Pj.3 Bi-Pj.7
Bi-Pj.4 Bi-Pj.8
Bi-Ss.7 Bi-Ss.10
Bi-Ss.8 Bi-Ss.11
Bi-Ss.9 Bi-Ss.12
Bi-Ss.10 Bi-Ss.13