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...

Monks’ Expiation (Pācittiya) 34

Bu-Pc.34.1.1 BD.2.321 … at Sāvatthī in the Jeta Grove in Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. Now at that Vin.4.79 time a woman lay-follower, the mother of Kāṇā,[1] had faith and was virtuous. Kāṇā[2] came to be given[3] to a certain man in a village. Then Kāṇā went to her mother’s house on some business or other. Then Kāṇā’s husband sent a messenger to Kāṇā, saying: “Let Kāṇā come back, I desire Kāṇā’s return.” Then the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, saying: “It is awkward to go empty-handed,”[4] cooked a cake.[5] When the cake was cooked, a certain monk walking for alms came up to the dwelling of the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother. Then the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, gave the cake to that monk. He, having gone away, told another, and she gave him a cake. He, having gone away, told another, and she gave him a cake.[6] As soon as a cake was BD.2.322 ready it disappeared.[7] A second time did Kāṇā’s husband send a messenger to Kāṇā, saying: “Let Kāṇā, come back, I desire Kāṇā’s return.” A second time did the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, saying: “It is awkward to go empty-handed” … it disappeared. A third time did Kāṇā’s husband send a messenger to Kāṇā, saying: “Let Kāṇā, come back, I desire Kāṇā’s return. If Kāṇā does not come back, I will take[8] another wife.” A third time did the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, saying: “It is awkward to go empty-handed” … it disappeared. Then Kāṇā’s husband procured another wife. Kāṇā heard: “It is said that another wife is taken by this man.” She stood weeping. Then the lord, dressing in the morning, taking his bowl and robe, came up to the dwelling of that woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, and having come up he sat down on the appointed seat. Then the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, approached the lord, and having approached and greeted the lord, she sat down at a respectful distance. As she was sitting down at a respectful distance, the lord spoke thus to the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother:

“Why does this Kāṇā weep?”

Then the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, told this matter to the lord. Then the lord, having … gladdened the woman lay-follower, Kāṇā’s mother, with talk on dhamma, rising up from his seat, departed.


Bu-Pc.34.1.2 Now at that time a certain caravan was desirous of going from Rājagaha to the south.[9] A certain monk, walking for alms-food, entered that caravan for alms-food. A certain lay-follower had barley-meal[10] given to BD.2.323 that monk. He, having gone away, told another, and he had barley-meal given to him. He, having gone away, told another, and he had barley-meal given to him. He, having gone away, told another, and he had barley-meal given to him. As soon as provisions for the journey were ready, they disappeared. Vin.4.80 Then that lay-follower said to these people:

“Masters, wait until tomorrow. As soon as provisions for the journey are ready, they are given to the masters. I will prepare provisions for the journey.”

Saying: “Master, we are unable to wait, the caravan is setting out,” they went away. Then as that lay-follower, having prepared provisions for the journey, was going along last, thieves robbed (him). People … spread it about, saying:

“How can the recluses, sons of the Sakyans, not knowing moderation, accept (provisions)? This (man) having given to them, going along last, was robbed by thieves.”

Monks heard these people who … spread it about. Then these monks told this matter to the lord. Then the lord in this connection, on this occasion, having given reasoned talk, addressed the monks, saying:

“Because of this, monks, I will make known a rule of training for monks, founded on ten reasons: for the excellence of the Order … for following the rules of restraint.[11] And thus, monks, this rule of training should be set forth:

If a monk, going up to a family, (who) asking, should invite[12] him (to take) cakes or barley-gruel,[13] two or three BD.2.324 bowlfuls may be accepted by a monk desiring them. Should he accept more than that, there is an offence of expiation. Having accepted two or three bowlfuls, having taken them back[14] from there, they must be shared together with the monks. This is the proper course in this case.”


Bu-Pc.34.2.1 If a monk, going up to a family means: a family means: there are four (kinds of) family: noble family, brahmin family, merchant family, low-class family.[15]

Going up to means: going there.

A cake means: whatever is prepared as a present.[16]

Barley-gruel means: whatever is prepared as provisions for a journey.

Asking, should invite means: they say, ‘take just as much as you want.’

Desiring means: wanting.

Two or three[17] bowlfuls may be accepted means: two or three[18] bowlfuls may be accepted.

Should he accept more than that means: if he accepts more than that, there is an offence of expiation.

Having accepted two or three bowlfuls, while taking them back from there, seeing a monk, he should be told: ‘Two or three bowlfuls were accepted by me in such and such a place, so do not accept (anything) there.’ If, seeing (him), he does not tell (him), there is an offence of wrong-doing.[19] If, although told, he accepts, there is an offence of wrong-doing. Vin.4.81

Having taken them back from there, they must be shared BD.2.325 together with the monks means: returning, having taken them back,[20] they must be shared.

This is the proper course in this case means: this is the appropriate course[21] in this case.


Bu-Pc.34.2.2 If he thinks that there are more when there are more than two or three bowlfuls, (and) accepts, there is an offence of expiation. If he is in doubt as to whether there are more than … If he thinks that there are less when there are more than two or three bowlfuls, (and) accepts, there is an offence of expiation. If he thinks that there are more when there are less than two or three bowlfuls, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he is in doubt as to whether there are less than two or three bowlfuls, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he thinks that there are less when there are less than two or three bowlfuls, there is no offence.


Bu-Pc.34.2.3 There is no offence if he accepts two or three bowlfuls; if he accepts less than two or three bowlfuls; if they give what is prepared neither as a present nor as provisions for a journey; if they give the remainder of what is prepared either as a present or as provisions for a journey; if they give because the journey is given up[22]; if they belong to relations; if they are invited; if they are for the good of another; if it is by means of his own property; if he is mad, if he is the first wrong-doer.

The Fourth

Footnotes and references:

1.

Kāṇāmata. The Babbu-Jātaka was told on account of Kāṇāmata. The Introduction to this Jātaka (Ja.1.477) differs somewhat from the above account, and also says that Kāṇāmata was a stream-attainer (as does Vin-a.819) and a disciple of the noble ones. Different version again at Dhp-a.2. 149ff. (on Dhp.82). Kāṇāmata and Kāṇā mentioned only in this Jātaka, pācittiya 34 and Dhp-a.

2.

She was so beautiful that when people saw her they became blind (Kāṇā) through passion, blinded (andha) with passion, so she was called Kāṇā because she caused blindness in others, Vin-a.819.

3.

I.e., in marriage.

4.

kismiṃ viya rittahatthaṃ gantuṃ. Cf. Ja.1.477, kathaṃ tuccha-hatthā va gamissasi; and see above, BD.2.43, “it is awkward to go out with (only) one piece of cloth,” kismiṃ viya ekasāṭakaṃ gantuṃ, with n.4. Vin-a.819 explains by kīdisaṃ viya, lajjanakaṃ viya hoti, it is like that, it is like causing shame.

5.

pūva. Vinaya Texts i.39, “sweetmeats,” which it was “the custom to send as presents from one house to another” (Vinaya Texts i.39, n.1).

6.

Possibly a fourth monk came and was given a cake, although the sentence is omitted. In the next paragraph four monks went to the caravan for alms, and in the Babbu-Jātaka four cats make the mouse give them food. Kāṇāmātā is said to have been the mouse, and the four monks the cats.

7.

Vin-a.819: As she was a disciple of the noble ones, when she saw monks she was unable not to give, thus as soon as she gave everything disappeared.

8.

āneti, lead back.

9.

paṭi-y-āloka. Same phrase occurs at Vin.4.131; Vin-a.868 supports above rendering.

10.

sattu. In the rule this seems to be replaced by mantha. See also Old Commentary, below, BD.2.324. At Vin.2.116 monks are allowed to fill needle-cases with satthu [sic] to prevent the needles from becoming blunt. At Ds.646 sattu appears in a list of foods, while at Ja.3.343 a wife prepares a bag of baked and unbaked sattu (variant reading satthu) for her husband. Vin-a.820: whatever is kneaded (or baked) sattu, unkneaded (or unbaked) sattu, sesamum seed and rice-grain, all here are called mantha. Vin-a.823 defines sattu as sāḷivīhiyavehi katasattu—i.e., sattu made with rices and barley, see below, BD.2.330.

11.

Cf. BD.1.37, and above, BD.2.87.

12.

abhihaṭṭhuṃ pavāreyya. See above, BD.2.51, n.1.

13.

mantha. Combined with madhupiṇḍdika, honey-ball, at Vin.1.4. See above, BD.2.322, n.4.

14.

I.e., to the monastery.

16.

pahiṇaka. Vin-a.819 explains by paṇṇākara, a donation, present, gift.

17.

dvitti … dve tayo.

18.

dvitti … dve tayo.

19.

There was a case in Colombo not long ago where monks visited for alms-food the hut of some very humble people, who that very day had managed to collect for themselves a rather less scanty meal than usual. The monks did not tell others that they had called here; and it happened that others followed them, so the people had to give away all the food they had. The matter was looked into by the Order and the monks’ attention drawn to this Pācittiya.

20.

paṭikkamanaṃ nīharitvā. Vin-a.820 says that if two or three bowlfuls are taken, putting one aside for himself, one or two respectively should be given to the Order. Cf. paṭikkamanasālā at Snp-a.53. Vin-a.820 says, āsanasālaṃ gacchantena ca chaḍḍitasālā na gantabbaṃ yattha hi bhikkhusaṅgho nisīdati tattha gantabbaṃ—that is, the monk must go there where the Order is sitting down, to a hall with seats.

21.

anudhammatā; cf. above, BD.2.69.

22.

gamane paṭippassaddhe. Vin-a.820 says, “seeing an accident on the road, or not wanting (to travel), they say, ‘We will not set forth, we will not go,’” thus the journey is paṭippassaddhe, upacchinne, broken off, interrupted.

Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: