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) 81

Bu-Pc.81.1.1 BD.3.64 … at Rājagaha in the Bamboo Grove at the squirrels’ feeding-place. Now at that time the venerable Dabba the Mallian assigned lodgings to the Order and distributed meals.[1] And the venerable one’s robe became worn thin. Now at that time one robe accrued to the Order. Then the Order gave this robe to the venerable Dabba the Mallian. The group of six monks looked down upon, criticised, spread it about, saying: “The monks are appropriating a benefit belonging to the Order[2] according to acquaintanceship.”[3]

Those who were modest monks … spread it about, saying: “How can this group of six monks, having given away a robe by means of a complete Order,[4] afterwards engage in criticism?”[5]

“Is it true, as is said, that you, monks, having given away a robe … afterwards engaged in criticism?”

“It is true, lord.”

The enlightened one, the lord, rebuked them, saying:

“How can you, foolish men, having given away a robe … afterwards engage in criticism? It is not, foolish men, for pleasing those who are not (yet) pleased … And thus, monks, this rule of training should be set forth:

BD.3.65

Whatever monk, having given away a robe by means of a complete Order, should afterwards engage in criticism, saying: “The monks are appropriating a benefit belonging to the Order according to acquaintanceship,” there is an offence of expiation.


Bu-Pc.81.2.1 Whatever means: … monk is to be understood in this case.

Complete Order means: belonging to the same communion,[6] staying within the same boundary.[7]

A robe means: any one robe of the six (kinds of) robes (including) the least one fit for assignment.[8]

According to acquaintanceship means: according to friendship,[9] according to comradeship,[10] according to intimacy,[11] according as one has the same preceptor, according as one has the same teacher.[12]

Belonging to the Order means: it comes to be given to the Order, handed over to (it).[13]

A benefit means: the requisites of robes, almsfood, lodgings, medicines for the sick, and even a lump of chunam and a toothpick and unwoven thread.[14] Vin.4.155

Should afterwards engage in criticism means: if he criticises when a robe is given to one who is ordained (and) agreed upon by the Order as assigner of lodgings or as distributor of meals or as apportioner of conjey or as apportioner of fruit or as apportioner of solid BD.3.66 food or as disposer of trifles,[15] there is an offence of expiation.


Bu-Pc.81.2.2 If he thinks that it is a legally valid act when it is a legally valid act, (and) criticises when a robe is given, there is an offence of expiation. If he is in doubt as to whether it is a legally valid act … If he thinks that it is not a legally valid act when it is a legally valid act … offence of expiation. If he criticises when another requisite is given, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he criticises when a robe or another requisite is given to one ordained, (but) not agreed upon by the Order as assigner of lodgings … as disposer of trifles, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he criticises when a robe or another requisite is given to one who is not ordained, (whether) agreed upon or not agreed upon by the Order as assigner of lodgings … as disposer of trifles, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he thinks that it is a legally valid act when it is not a legally valid act, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he is in doubt as to whether it is not a legally valid act, there is an offence of wrong-doing. If he thinks that it is not a legally valid act when it is not a legally valid act, there is no offence.[16]


Bu-Pc.81.2.3 There is no offence if he criticises, saying: ‘What is the use of giving to one acting by nature from desire, from hatred, from confusion, from fear? For having received it, he will ruin it, he will not look after[17] it properly if he is mad, if he is the first wrong-doer.[18]

The Eleventh[19]

Footnotes and references:

2.

Cf. Vin.3.265.

3.

yathāsantataṃ, Variant reading -saṇhatam, explained below in Old Commentary, as yathāmittatāCf. Bu-Pc.13 where Dabba is accused of acting out of favouritism.

4.

samaggena saṅghena. All members of any particular Order—i.e. that part of the Order staying in a certain residence, āvāsa, or within a certain boundary, sīmā, had to be present for the proper carrying out of all official proceedings. See Old Commentary below. Cf. Bu-Pc.21, especially Vin.4.52.

5.

Cf. Bu-Pc.79.

6.

samānasaṃvāsaka. Cf. definition of saṃvāsa, communion, in each Defeat, BD.1.

7.

samānasīmāyaṃ ṭhito. These two expressions occur in same definition at BD.3.170, BD.3.193 below, and Vin.3.173, also at Vin.1.321. See note at Vinaya Texts ii.209, Vinaya Texts ii.271. That the two terms are not necessarily coincident is shown at Vin.1.340. See also S. Dutt, Early Buddhist Monachism, p.132.

9.

yathāmittatā.

10.

yathāsandiṭṭhatā. Sandiṭṭha is a friend, one seen together with (you).

11.

Yathāsambhattatā. Cf. DN.ii.98.

12.

Cf. Vin.4.178.

15.

Cf. Vin.4.38 (= BD.2.236) and note for references.

16.

Cf. Vin.4.39.

17.

upanessati; upaneti, to bring up to, to conduce, to adduce; to present, give.

18.

Cf. Vin.4.39 (BD.2.237), and see n.2.

19.

See notes end of Bu-Pc.80.