Samannaphala Sutta, Sāmaññaphala Sutta: 1 definition

Introduction

Samannaphala Sutta 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 (S) next»] — Samannaphala Sutta in Theravada glossary
Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names

The second sutta of the Digha Nikaya. Ajatasattu, accompanied by Jivaka, visits the Buddha at Jivakas Ambavana and questions him on the fruits of recluse ship, wherefore men join the Buddhas Order. The Buddha answers and includes in his answer his justification for the foundation of the Order, for the enunciation of the Vinaya, and the practical rules by which life in the Order is regulated.

The sutta also contains a list of ordinary occupations followed by people in the Buddhas day, which forms interesting reading.

In the introductory story, Ajatasattu explains that he has already put the question to the founders of six other Orders:

Purana Kassapa, Makkhali Gosala, Ajita Kesakambala, Pakudha Kaccayana, Nigantha Nataputta Sanjaya Belatthiputta.

But these teachers, instead of answering his questions, give a general statement of their theories.

The summaries given here of their teachings are of great interest, because they form some sort of evidence, at least, as to the speculations favoured by them. By means of a counter question, the Buddha finds from Ajatasattu that even if a servant of his joined the Order, he would receive the kings honour and respect. Then the Buddha proceeds to show, step by step, the fruits higher and nobler, which await the samana, immediate in their effect, culminating in the six fold abhinna of the arahant. The king is greatly impressed, takes refuge in the Buddha, and expresses his remorse for having killed his father. The Buddha utters no word of blame, but after the departure of the king, he informs the monks that if Ajatasattu had not been guilty of patricide he would have realized the first fruit of the Path (D.i.47 86).

The Commentary adds (DA.i.238) that as a result of hearing this discourse, Ajatasattu would, in the future, become a Pacceka Buddha named Viditavisesa. From this moment, Ajatasattu was one of the Buddhas most devoted followers. It is said that, after his fathers death, Ajatasattu could never sleep at night until he had heard the Buddha, after which he enjoyed peaceful sleep.

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).

Discover the meaning of samannaphala sutta in the context of Theravada from relevant books on Exotic India

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