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...

The story of Keṇiya the matted-hair ascetic

Kd.6.35.1 Then the Lord, walking on tour,[1] in due course arrived at Āpaṇa.[2] The matted hair ascetic Keniya[3] heard: “Verily, BD.4.337 the recluse Gotama, the son of the Sakyans, who has gone forth from a Sakyan family, has reached Āpaṇa and is staying in Āpaṇa. A lovely reputation[4] has gone forth concerning the Lord Gotama, thus: … He explains with the spirit and the letter the Brahma-faring completely fulfilled and wholly pure. Good indeed it were to see perfected ones like this.” Then it occurred to Keniya the matted hair ascetic: “Now, what could I get conveyed to the recluse Gotama?”

Kd.6.35.2 Then it occurred to Keniya the matted hair ascetic: “Now, those who were[5] formerly seers of the brahmins, makers of mantras,[6] preservers of mantras, whose ancient mantras as sung, taught,[7] and composed the brahmins of today still sing, still speak; they still speak what was spoken, they still teach what was taught, that is to say (by) Aṭṭhaka,[8] Vāmaka,[9] Vāmadeva,[10] Vessāmitta, Yamataggi,[11] Angirasa, Bhāradvāja, Vāseṭṭha, Kassapa,[12] Bhagu—these abstaining from food at night, restrained from eating at the wrong time,[13] (yet) consented to such things as drinks.

Kd.6.35.3 “The recluse Gotama also abstains from food at night and is restrained from eating at the wrong time[14]; the recluse Gotama also is worthy[15] to consent to such things as drinks,” and having had abundant drinks prepared, having had them taken on carrying-poles,[16] he approached the Lord; having approached, he exchanged greetings with the Lord; having exchanged greetings of friendliness and courtesy with the Lord, he stood at a respectful distance. As he was standing at a respectful distance, Keniya the matted hair ascetic spoke thus BD.4.338 to the Lord: “Let the revered Gotama accept drink from me.”

“Well then, Keniya, give it to the monks.” The monks, being scrupulous, did not accept it. (The Lord said:) “Accept it, monks, make use of it.”

Kd.6.35.4 Then Keniya the matted hair ascetic, having with his own hand served and satisfied the Order of monks with the enlightened one at its head with abundant drinks sat down at a respectful distance when the Lord had washed his hand[17] and had withdrawn his hand from his bowl. Then as Keniya the matted hair ascetic was sitting down at a respectful distance, the Lord gladdened, rejoiced, roused, delighted him with talk on dhamma. Then Vin.1.246 Keniya the matted hair ascetic, gladdened … delighted by the Lord with talk on dhamma, spoke thus to the Lord: “May the revered Gotama together with the Order of monks consent to a meal with me on the morrow.”

Kd.6.35.5 “But, Keniya, the Order of monks is large, twelve hundred and fifty monks, and you are in favour of the brahmins.” Then Keniya the matted hair ascetic spoke a second time to the Lord thus: “Although, good Gotama, the Order of monks is large, twelve hundred and fifty monks, and I am in favour of the brahmins, (yet) may the revered Gotama together with the Order of monks consent to a meal with me on the morrow.”

“But, Keniya, the Order of monks is large, twelve hundred and fifty monks, and you are in favour of the brahmins.” Then Keniya the matted hair ascetic spoke a third time to the Lord thus:

“Although, good Gotama, the Order of monks is large, twelve hundred and fifty monks, and I am in favour of the brahmins, (yet) may the revered Gotama together with the Order of monks consent to a meal with me on the morrow.” The Lord consented by becoming silent. Then Keniya the matted hair ascetic, having understood the Lord’s consent, rising from his seat departed.

Kd.6.35.6 Then the Lord, on this occasion having given reasoned talk, addressed the monks, saying:

BD.4.339I allow you, monks, eight (kinds of) drinks[18]: mango drink,[19] rose-apple drink, plantain[20] drink, banana[21] drink, honey drink, grape drink, edible lotus root drink,[22] phārusaka[23] drink. I allow you, monks, the juice of all fruits except the juice of the fruit of corn.[24] I allow you, monks, the juice of all leaves except vegetable[25] juice. I allow you, monks, the juice of all flowers except liquorice[26] juice. I allow you, monks, sugarcane juice.[27]

Kd.6.35.7 Then Keniya the matted hair ascetic, towards the end of that night having had sumptuous food, solid and soft, prepared in his own hermitage,[28] had the time announced to the Lord saying: “It is time, good Gotama, the meal is ready.” Then the Lord, having dressed in the morning, taking his bowl and robe, approached the hermitage of Keniya the matted hair ascetic; having approached, he sat down on the appointed seat together with the Order of monks. Then Keniya the matted hair ascetic, having with his own hand served and satisfied the Order of monks with the awakened one at its head with sumptuous food, solid and soft, sat down at a respectful BD.4.340 distance when the Lord had eaten and had withdrawn his hand from his bowl.

Kd.6.35.8 As Keniya the matted hair ascetic was sitting down at a respectful distance, the Lord thanked him in these verses:

“Sacrifices[29] are chief in fire-worship,[30]
Sāvitrī[31] chief of (Vedic) metres,
A king is chief of men,
the ocean chief of waters,
The moon is chief of the lamps of night,[32]
the sun chief of luminaries,[33]
For those giving alms, desiring merit,
the Order is indeed the chief.”

Then the Lord, having thanked Keniya the matted hair ascetic in these verses, rising from his seat, departed. Vin.1.247

Footnotes and references:

1.

From here to end of Kd.6.35.5, cf. Snp.102ff. = MN.ii.146ff.

2.

This is called a market town, nigama, of Aṅga at SN.v.225; a market town of Aṅguttarāpa at Snp.103, MN.i.359, MN.i.447. Āpaṇa was so named because it had a quantity of shops, Snp-a.ii.440, MN-a.iii.37.

3.

Spelt Keṇiya at Snp.p.103, MN-a.iii.399. He is mentioned at Tha-ap.318. According to Snp-a.440, MN-a.iii.399 he was a very wealthy (mahāsāla) brahmin who became a jaṭila (matted hair) ascetic so as to protect his wealth, and he was also the protector of five thousand families; but although he wore the yellow robes by day, by night he indulged in pleasures of the senses. At DN-a.i.270 he is given as an example, among eight types of ascetics, of the type who supports wife and children (sa-puttabhāriya). See also Dhp-a.i.323, Ud-a.241.

4.

As above, BD.4.332.

5.

Down to the name Bhagu = DN.i.104, DN.i.238, DN.i.242; AN.iii.224, DN.i.229; MN.ii.169, DN.i.200.

6.

I.e. the Vedas.

7.

pavutta, explained at DN-a.273 as “spoken for others,” taught (vācita, made to speak).

8.

On the names of these ṛṣis or seers, see Vinaya Texts ii.130, n.3. Aṭṭhaka is usually identified with Aṣṭaka, mentioned as author of Ṛg Veda 10.104.

9.

Cf. Ṛg Veda 10.99.

10.

Cf. Ṛg Veda 4.26.

11.

Under Jamadagni in Vedic Index he is connected with Ṛg Veda 362, Ṛg Veda 318; Ṛg Veda 8101, Ṛg Veda 88; Ṛg Veda 962, Ṛg Veda 924; Ṛg Veda 965, Ṛg Veda 925.

12.

Cf. Ṛg Veda 9.114,2.

13.

“Wrong time” for eating defined at Vin.4.86 as “after noon has passed until sunrise”.

14.

Cf. DN.i.5.

15.

arahati samaṇo pi Gotamo. The meaning is that he is worthy enough to confer a boon on the giver of the things which he consents to accept.

16.

kāja, cf. MN.iii.148.

18.

At Mnd.372 two lists of eight drinks each are given, the first being the same as this Vinaya list. These drinks occur in a controverted point at Kv.552.

19.

Made from raw or cooked mangoes. Vin-a.1101.

20.

coca, which may however be coconut or cinnamon. But Vin-a.1102 = Nd-a.ii.396 declare this to be a drink made from the fruit of bananas (or plantains, kadali) which have kernels, aṭṭhika (stone or kernel of a fruit). The meaning therefore is not clear, and is further confused by the next drink, moca, which Vin-a.1102 = Nd-a.ii.396 say is made of plantain fruits without kernels, anaṭṭhika. See Vinaya Texts ii.132, n.

21.

moca, Musa sapientum.

22.

sāluka-pāna. Vin-a.1102 = Nd-a.ii.396 say it is a drink that is made having crushed the edible roots of the red and the blue lotuses and so on.

23.

Vinaya Texts ii.133, n.2 says “this is Grewia Asiatica of Linnaeus”, Monier Williams (under parūsha(ka)) adding “from the berries of which a cooling beverage is prepared”. Phārusaka occurs also at Dhp-a.iii.316.

24.

Vin-a.1102 refers to the seven kinds of grain or corn, dhañña, which probably are those enumerated at Vin.4.264, Nd-a.ii.396. See BD.1.83, n.4. Toddy and arrack are prepared from grain. The use of toddy was one of the ten points not allowed by the Council of Vesālī, Vin.2.301.

25.

ḍāka (= Sanskrit sāka), vegetable, herb, potherb. Vin-a.1102 explains as cooked ḍāka. See below, Kd.6.36.8 where all kinds of vegetables are allowed.

26.

madhuka. This is the tree Bassia latifolia.

27.

Vin-a.1103 says “in allowing these drinks (mango drink and so on), these four (kinds of) juices are allowed as well”.

28.

Snp.p.104 here breaks off the account, although it adds, before going on to the Sela story, that Keniya’s friends, servants and relations helped him in all kinds of ways in the preparation of the meal. Snp.p.110 then takes up the account again, as Vinaya above, and thus includes the two verses appearing below. The Sutta Nipāta version naturally does not include the “allowances” of Kd.6.35.6.

29.

These two verses = Snp.568–Snp.569.

30.

The Jaṭilas were fire-worshippers. Yañña, sacrifice, became under Buddhist usage an alms-gift to an Order or to monks, a deyyadhamma, gift of faith, Cnd.523.

31.

A Vedic metre. Cf. Snp.457, “three lines (pada) twenty-four syllables”. Snp-a.ii.403 states that Sāvitrī in the discipline of the nobles would be: buddhaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi / dhammaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi / saṅghaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi.

32.

nakkhatta, usually meaning a constellation or lunar mansion. Snp-a.ii.456 says, “According to the conjunction of the moon, so that from a sign, from its brightness (ālokakaraṇa) and from its gentleness one can say, ‘Today is Kattikā, today is Rohinī’ (name of two months or lunar mansions) it is said ‘The moon is chief of the nakkhattas’”.

33.

tapataṃ = tapantānaṃ, of shining, of bright, of radiant (things).