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...

On permission for woollen garments, etc.

Kd.8.2.1 Now at that time the king of Kāsi[1] sent woollen stuff[2] that BD.4.398 was worth half a kāsi, being valued at half a kāsi,[3] to Jīvaka Komārabhacca. Then Jīvaka Komārabhacca, taking that woollen stuff that was worth half a kāsi, approached the Lord; having approached, having greeted the Lord, he sat down at a respectful distance. As he was sitting down at a respectful distance, Jīvaka Komārabhacca spoke thus to the Lord: “Lord, this woollen stuff that is worth half a kāsi, being valued at half a kāsi, was sent to me by the king of Kāsi. Lord, may the Lord accept the woollen stuff from me that it may be for me a blessing and a happiness for a long time.” The Lord accepted the woollen stuff. Then the Lord gladdened, rejoiced, roused, delighted Jīvaka Komārabhacca with dhamma-talk. Jīvaka Komārabhacca, gladdened … with dhamma-talk, having greeted the Lord, departed keeping his right side towards him. Then the Lord, on this occasion, having given reasoned talk, addressed the monks, saying: “I allow you, monks, woollen stuff.

Kd.8.3.1 At that time various kinds[4] of robe-material accrued to the Order. Then it occurred to the monks: “Now, what (kind of) robe-materials are allowed by the Lord, what are not allowed?” They told this matter to the Lord. He said: “Monks, I allow six (kinds of) robe-materials[5]: linen, cotton, silk, wool, coarse hempen cloth, canvas.

Kd.8.3.2 BD.4.399 Now at that time these monks Vin.1.282 consented to householders’ robes; (but) being scrupulous, they did not consent to rag-robes, thinking: “Only one (kind of) robe is allowed by the Lord, not two (kinds).” They told this matter to the Lord. He said: “Monks, I allow him who consents to householders’ robes to consent also to rag-robes. And I, monks, commend satisfaction with both.”[6]

Footnotes and references:


Kāsi was a mahājanapada, whose capital was Benares. Vin-a.1119 says that the king was brother to Pasenadi by the same father.


kambala, or a woollen blanket or garment.


aḍḍhakāsikaṃ kambalaṃ pahesi upaḍḍhakāsinaṃ khamamānaṃ. Vinaya Texts ii.195 has “a woollen garment made half of Benares cloth …” with note that “our translation of aḍḍhakāsikaṃ kambalaṃ is merely conjectural.” Vin-a.1119 says “here kāsi means a thousand, a thing worth that is kāsiya, but this is worth five hundred, therefore it is called half-kāsi; for this same reason it is said upaḍḍhakāsīnaṃ khamamānaṃ”. The whole passage is obscure. Benares was famous for its silks and muslins, but the stuff sent by the king was of wool. I am therefore following the Commentary’s lead in taking kāsi, kāsika and kāsīnaṃ as representing worth, cost or value in the above passage. Critical Pali Dictionary under aḍḍhakāsika says that it “seems originally to mean a sort of ‘ half-muslin’ (cf. kāsika), but here taken in the sense of a piece of stuff sufficient for half the people of Kāsī”. See Dictionary of Pali Proper Names under Aḍḍhākāsī, the courtesan, for suggestions that she derived her name from the fact that she charged her patrons “five hundred” (i.e. probably kahāpaṇas). Pp-a.315 gives the value of brand new, neither new nor old, and worn Kāsi cloths., says that a garment of Kāsi cloth is worth a hundred thousand.


uccāvacāni. Vin-a.1119 says “nice and nasty.”


At Vin.1.58, Vin.1.96 these six are called benefits extra to rag-robes. At AN.iv.394 the first four are mentioned as forming part of a rich gift. See BD.2.143 for notes. They are, naturally, identical with the six kinds of thread or yarn, Vin.3.256.


Cf. Kd.8.1.35.

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