The Teachings of Phra Ajaan Mun Bhuridatta Thera
by Phra Ajaan Mun Bhuridatta Thera | 1995 | 9,299 words
Translated from the Thai by Thanissaro Bhikkhu Copyright © 1995 Metta Forest Monastery PO Box 1409, Valley Center, CA 92082 For free distribution only. You may reprint this work for free distribution. You may re-format and redistribute this work for use on computers and computer networks provided that you charge no fees for its distribution or us...
aggam thanam manussesu maggam satta visuddhiya:
The supreme position is to be found among human beings: the path to the purification of living beings. This can be explained as follows: We have received our legacy from namo, our parents -- i.e., this body, which has taken a human birth, the highest birth there is. We are supreme beings, well placed in a supreme position, complete with the treasures of thought, word, and deed. If we want to amass external treasures, such as material wealth, money, and gold, we can. If we want to amass internal treasures, such as the extraordinary qualities of the paths, their fruitions, and nibbana, we also can. The Buddha formulated the Dhamma and Vinaya for us human beings, and not at all for cows, horses, elephants, and so on. We human beings are a race that can practice to reach purity. So we shouldnt be discouraged or self deprecating, thinking that we are lacking in worth or potential, because as human beings we are capable. What we dont have, we can give rise to. What we already have, we can make greater. This is in keeping with the teaching found in the Vessantara Jataka:
Having worked at amassing wisdom through being charitable, observing the precepts, and developing the mind in line with the teachings of the Lord Buddha, those who work only a little will have to go to heaven, while those who are determined and really do the work -- and at the same time having the help of the potential and perfections they have developed in the past -- will reach nibbana without a doubt.
Common animals are said not to be supreme because they cant act as human beings can. So it is rightly said that human beings are well placed in a supreme position, able to lead themselves to the paths, their fruitions, and to pure nibbana.