Nakulapita, Nakulapitā: 1 definition


Nakulapita means something in Buddhism, Pali. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

[«previous (N) next»] — Nakulapita in Theravada glossary
Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names

Nakulapita and Nakulamata

A man and his wife, householders of Sumsumaragiri in the Bhagga country. When the Buddha visited the village and stayed at Bhesakalavana, they went to see him. They immediately fell at his feet, calling him son and asking why he had been so long away. It is said that they had been the Bodhisattas parents for five hundred births and his near relations for many more. The Buddha preached to them and they became sotapannas. The Buddha visited their village once more when they were old. They entertained him, telling of their devotion to each other in this life and asking for a teaching which should keep them likewise together in after life. The Buddha referred to this in the assembly of the Sangha, declaring them to be the most intimate companions (vissasika) among his disciples. (A.I.26, A.II.61f, AA.i.216f, 246; ii.514; SA.ii.182)

Once, when Nakulapita lay grievously ill, his wife noticed that he was fretful with anxiety. She assured him there was no need for anxiety on his part, either on behalf of her or his children. She spoke with such conviction that Nakulapita regained his composure of mind and grew well. Later he visited the Buddha and told him of this, and was congratulated by the Buddha on having such an excellent wife. (A.III.295ff)

The Samayutta Nikaya (S.3.1, S.4.116; A.IV.268) contains records of conversations between Nakulapita and the Buddha. Both husband and wife are mentioned in lists of eminent disciples. (A.iii.465; A.iv.348).

It is said that Nakulapitas desire for eminence was first conceived in the time of Padamuttara Buddha. He was then a householder of Hamsavati, and was present at an assembly where the Buddha declared someone to be chief of the vissasikas. A.I.216.

Nakulapita Vagga

The first chapter of the Khandha Samyutta. S.3.1-21.

1. Nakulapita Sutta

Nakulapita visits the Buddha at Bhesakalavana and asks for a teaching to comfort him since he is now old and always ailing. The Buddha advises him to train his mind. Nakulapita, then visits Sairiputta and asks him to explain the Buddhas teaching on this point. Saiputta explains in detail that training of the mind implies the getting rid of thoughts of self with regard to the khandhas. S.iii.1 ff.

2. Nakulapita Sutta

Nakulapita visits the Buddha at Bhesakalavana and asks him why some beings are wholly set free in this very life, while others are not. This has to do with grasping, says the Buddha, and then proceeds to explain it. S. iv. 107, 116.

context information

Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).

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