Vinaya Pitaka (3): Khandhaka

by I. B. Horner | 2014 | 386,194 words | ISBN-13: 9781921842160

The English translation of the Khandhaka: the second book of the Pali Vinaya Pitaka, one of the three major ‘baskets’ of Therevada canonical literature. It is a collection of various narratives. The English translation of the Vinaya-pitaka (third part, khandhaka) contains many Pali original words, but transliterated using a system similar to the I...

Allowance for ordination twenty years from conception

Kd.1.75.1 Now at that time the venerable Kassapa the Boy[1] became ordained twenty years after his conception. Then it occurred to the venerable Kassapa the Boy: “It is laid down by the BD.4.120 Lord that an individual who is under twenty years of age should not be ordained,[2] and I am twenty years from my conception. Now am I ordained[3] or am I not ordained?” They told this matter to the Lord. He said:

“When in his mother’s womb the first thought has arisen, the first consciousness appeared,[4] his birth is (to be reckoned as) from that time. I allow you, monks, to ordain one who is twenty years of age from his conception.

Footnotes and references:


Kumārakassapa. Kumāra has the meaning both of boy and of prince. Kumārakassapa “went forth” when he was only seven years old and he had been reared by a king since his birth by a nun; see AN-a.i.284, MN-a.ii.120, Thag-a. (Psalms of the Bretheren p.147f.), Dhp-a.iii.144, Ja.i.148. Verses are ascribed to him at Thag.201–202. Called “chief of those who are versatile speakers” at AN.i.24. The Vammīki Sutta (MN.i.142) was spoken to Kumārakassapa; the Nigrodhamigajātaka ( and Dhp.160 on account of his mother.


Bu-Pc.65, and above, BD.4.98.


Cf. Bu-Pc.65 where it is stated that if a person is ordained while he is under twenty he is not (really) ordained. He himself incurs no offence, but there is an offence for the monks who ordain him.


Cf. definition of manussaviggaha, human being, at Vin.3.73.

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