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Vesak Discussion on the Mahaaraahulovaadasutta, Part 2.

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  • nina van gorkom
    Vesak Discussion on the Mahaaraahulovaada sutta Part 2. Rahula had to apply himself to mental development similar to the elements. We read in another Sutta
    Message 1 of 1 , May 22, 2003
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      Vesak Discussion on the Mahaaraahulovaada sutta Part 2.

      Rahula had to apply himself to mental development similar to the elements.
      We read in another Sutta that Sariputta, who was Rahula's preceptor, said
      that he was like the elements, unshakable by undesirable objects. We read in
      the Gradual Sayings, Book of the Nines, Ch II, § 1 (IV, 373) that
      Sariputta was falsely accused by another monk, but that he had no ill-will.
      We read that he said:
      ³Lord, just as on the earth they cast things, clean and foul, dung, urine,
      spittle, pus and blood, yet for all that the earth is not filled with
      horror, loathing, or disgust; even so, lord, like the earth I abide with
      heart, large, abundant, measureless, feeling no hatred, nor ill-will. ³
      We then read that he was like the elements of water, fire and wind. After
      that Sariputta compared himself with a duster:
      ³Lord, just as a duster wipes up things, clean and foul, dung, urine,
      spittle, pus and blood, yet for all that the duster is not filled with
      horror, loathing, or disgust; even so, lord, like the duster I abide with
      heart, large, abundant, measureless, feeling no hatred, nor ill-will. ³
      Sariputta had no conceit and he could forgive whomever offended him.
      As we read in the Mahaaraahulovaadasutta, <For when you apply yourself to
      the mental development that is like the earth, Rahula, agreeable and
      disagreeable impressions that have arisen, will not take a lasting hold on
      the mind.
      pathaviisama.m, raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. pathaviisama~nhi te,
      raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato uppannaa manaapaamanaapaa phassaa citta.m na
      pariyaadaaya .thassanti.>

      The Subcommentary explains that through vipassana desirable and undesirable
      impressions do not persist. This causes me to think of another sutta. We
      read in the ³Kindred Sayings² (IV, Kindred Sayings on Sense, Fourth Fifty,
      ch V, § 202, Lustful) that Mahaamoggallaana spoke to the monks about a monk
      who has unwise attention to the objects impinging on the senses and the
      mind. Objects overcome a monk, he does not overcome objects.
      We read about the monk who is free from lust:
      ³Herein, friends, a monk, seeing an object with the eye, is not attached to
      objects that charm, nor averse from objects that displease...²
      The same is said about the objects experienced through the other doorways.
      We read:
      ³With mind cognizing a mind-state, he is not attached to mind-states that
      charm, nor averse from mind-states that displease, but dwells, having
      established mindfulness of the body and his thought is boundless, so that he
      realizes in its true nature that emancipation of heart, that emancipation of
      wisdom, wherein those evil unprofitable states that have arisen come to
      cease without remainder.
      This monks, friends, is called Œnot lustful after objects cognizable by the
      eye... not lust ful after objects cognizable by the mind.¹ Thus dwelling,
      friends, if Mara come upon him by way of the eye, of the tongue, of the
      mind... Mara gets no access, gets no opportunity...
      Moreover, friends, so dwelling a monk conquers objects, objects do not
      conquer him. He conquers sounds, scents savours, tangibles, mind-states.
      They do not conquer him. Such a monk, friends, is called Œconqueror of
      objects, sounds, scents savours, tangibles, mind-states.¹ He is conqueror,
      not conquered. He conquers those evil, unprofitable states, passion-fraught,
      inciting to lust, leading to rebirth, states unhappy, whose fruit is pain,
      rebirth, decay and death. Thus, friends, is one free from lust.²
      (to be continued).
      Nina.
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