Monday, 10 April 2017

Записки: Развитие осознанности: 02.04.17

Развитие осознанности:

WELCOME

Theme – developing awareness and kindness by means of meditation, this week it is awareness.

INTRODUCTION

Our name, why we came, one sentence,

I am Suvannavira, Buddhist name, I am a Buddhist

No religion, I wanted to make these classes accessible to all.

PREPARATION to today's meditation, the Mindfulness of Breathing.

Preparation, is very important, if we prepare well we are almost meditating in the real sense of the word.

PRINCIPLE: If we want to be able to focus our attention, we need to have a relaxed and broad base of awareness.

So we will start by developing these two qualities, a broad base of attention and relaxation.

IMAGE: sitting like a mountain, broad base, very still, small tip.

BROAD BASE OF EXPERIENCE means all of ourselves,

both in terms of all aspects of our direct experience and all sides of ourselves.

SOUNDS: starting with a broad experience outside ourselves, the sounds in the room and beyond.

BODY: the whole of our body sitting here, pleasant and painful feelings, and the rhythm of the breath in the body.

FEELINGS AND EMOTIONS: just let us feel what we are feeling, pleasant and unpleasant, comfortable uncomfortable.

Don't worry, everything is normal. End on a positive note. Не вините себя.

THOUGHTS: people often coming thinking meditation is 'not thinking'. OK, now we can think, doesn't mean start thinking about something, just notice thoughts that arise, and where they go. Thinking can be a doorway to deep concentration.

ALL TOGETHER


MINDFULNESS OF THE BODY

We will now focus on the body, part by part. I will explain again this practice during the meditation.

Being aware of the body doesn't meaning thinking about it or using your imagination,

but being aware of the feelings in each part, pleasant, painful or neutral.

Being aware of painful feelings doesn't mean we need to sit and suffer, can move quietly.


INTRODUCTION

Many different types of meditation in the world, forget your preconceptions?

We teach meditation in terms of Western culture, so no Eastern words.

Meditation is a practice, we need to do it regularly to get results.

We do it to transform ourselves (in the end) completely.

Sometimes it is difficult, sometime easy and very pleasant, in both cases we just need to keep going.

It is a tool for us to work on ourselves, on our mind with our mind.


MINDFULNESS OF BREATHING


WHAT ARE WE TRYING TO DO

We try to be more aware by becoming more concentrated, when we are really concentrated we are naturally aware.

Being concentrated does not mean a forced fixation on a small point,

GOAL the natural integration of all our energies, which then flow in one direction, with stable concentration.

It can be very pleasant, pleasure can be a doorway to concentration.


HOW ARE WE TRYING TO DO IT

We work on developing awareness by keeping our mind focussed on one object.

It happens to be the breathing, it relaxes us, we just breath naturally.

And we have our eyes closed so none of the usual distractions.


STAGES OF THE PRACTICE.

So I will now explain two stages of the mindfulness of breathing.

FIRST STAGE we simply try to maintain an awareness of the breathing,

somewhere in the body, our choice where,

we can just breath naturally, not need to control our breath,

to help us stay focussed on the breath, and to help the rational mind take part,

we count after every out-breath, until 10, then start again.

If we notice we are distracted, or gone on to 11,12,13, or we have started thinking, just gently return to the breath.

The very first step is learning to simply come back to the breath, noticing when we have slipped away.

Later we can look at other ways to work in meditation.

SECOND STAGE we don't have the help of the numbers, we just try to be aware of the breath

Anywhere in the body, just somewhere interesting, allow yourself to get more interested in the process of breathing.

Look for doorways to deeper concentration: images, emotions and pleasant feelings, thoughts even.


FURTHER TEACHING, GOING FURTHER

BACK TO PREPARATION How to go further with it? Five stages:

--Поза для медитации

If our posture has deteriorated, get it back, or deal with pain points; ankles, back, shoulders, neck.

Fine tuning; rock on hips, lift hand and shoulders, rock head

Then give some time to be aware of the body again, shades into ...

--Само наблудение give yourself time to feel what you are feeling, body, emotions, thoughts, не вините себя

--Цель; Remember exactly what we are trying to do, what the practice is, qualities to develop, and not drifting.

--Энмузиазм; why you wanted to learn to meditate, inspiring people who meditate, your good meditations,

--Решимость, решительность.

We decide to really do it, wholeheartedly, not mechanically, every time like the first time, resolved not to waste time, with balanced energy, to really be in the moment.


PRACTICE AT HOME

Try to meditate every day, or 3-4 times a week; 10, 20 or 30 minutes a day.

Start with самонаблудение, Mindfulness of the Body then Development of Awareness,

how much time for each practice, learn to know what you need, how many minutes for each, and for each stage?

Helps to find a regular place and time to meditate, for it to be calm around you, switch off your phone.

Leave time free before and after, otherwise jarring.

Sometimes difficult, keep on, notice state of mind at beginning and end.

Repetition is key to success in meditation.


SO HOW CAN WE PRACTICE IN EVERYDAY LIFE?

--We can be more aware of our bodies, when we are walking, body scan in the metro rather than listen to music.

All the time, notice how we are sitting when we are working on the computer, how does it feel in our feet when we walk somewhere, letting our shoulders relax and move downwards when we feel tense.

Or just at particular moments, instead of a cigarette break, take a moment to do a quick mindfulness of the body.

--We can be more aware of our thoughts.

Give ourselves time to think, think through all those details, it will make our lives less chaotic.

Plan and anticipate rather than get in a mess.

If we experience anxiety when we think, relax, take a deep breath and that will help us think without anxiety.

We can get very concentrated through thinking especially when we are very engaged with something.

We can consider the consequences of our actions, why we sometimes feel well and other times not,

Why sometimes people are friendly and at other times not.


Next week other practice, development of kindness, then come once a month to keep up the connection.


QUESTION: HOW DO YOU KNOW IT IS WORKING?

--We notice a change in how we experience the world in our everyday lives.

--Meditation is not always easy, we all have times where they feel they can't do it, then we notice a change only afterwards.

--Sometimes straight after the sit, we think and start being absorbed.

--Our friends notice a change in us, they may not be able to say what.

--How do we know it is not working, after 4 weeks we want a new practice, we are bored, we want something more advanced.

Friday, 7 April 2017

Записки: развитие доброты: 09.04.17

Развитие доброты:


WELCOME

Theme – developing awareness and kindness by means of meditation, this week it is kindness.


INTRODUCTION

Our name, why we came, one sentence, I am Suvannavira, Buddhist name, I am a Buddhist

No religion, I wanted to make these classes accessible to all.


INTRODUCTION

Many different types of meditation in the world, forget your preconceptions?

We teach meditation in terms of Western culture, so no Eastern words.

Meditation is a practice, we need to do it regularly to get results.

We do it to transform ourselves (in the end) completely.

Sometimes it is difficult, sometime easy and very pleasant, in both cases we just need to keep going.

It is a tool for us to work on ourselves, on our mind with our mind.

--Every time like the first time, if you have been meditating for years. It will help your practice.

--Go beyond your limits.


PREPARATION

Preparation is very important, it starts the process of meditation, and good to have time to set down at the end.

If we want to be in touch with genuinely positive emotions, a relaxed and broad base of awareness of ourselves is needed.

So we start by developing a broad base of awareness of ourselves and relaxation.

BROAD BASE OF EXPERIENCE means all the different aspects of ourselves, be open and honest, requires self confidence.

SOUNDS: starting with a broad experience outside ourselves, the sounds in the room and beyond.

BODY: the whole of our body sitting here, pleasant and painful feelings, and the rhythm of the breath in the body.

FEELINGS AND EMOTIONS: just let us feel what we are feeling, pleasant and unpleasant. Don't worry, everything is normal. This is particularly important for developing kindness.

THOUGHTS: people often think meditation is 'not thinking'. OK, now we can watch thoughts thoughts, how they come and go, doesn't mean start thinking about something. Thinking can be a doorway to deeper concentration. ALL TOGETHER


DEVELOPMENT OF KINDESS

As well as no religion, try not to use foreign words, so development of kindness, but really we are taking about Metta.

Meaning Kindness and other positive emotions like:

1/ friendliness

2/ desire to help (when you have the chance)

3/ love

4/ wishing beings well

5/ sensitivity to them

6/ sense of connection

7/ awareness of them

8/ interest in them

A/ When helping, disinterested, doesn't look to get something in return.

B/ Directed not just to those who are close but to all living beings.

C/ So not something we can develop in a day.

D/ But we start close to home, with ourselves and a good friend, meaning not a lover, child, parent, or someone who has died. Friendship as a powerful emotion, the seed of metta.


1st STAGE We develop kindness to ourselves. If we are not kind to ourselves, we can't be truly kind to others.

We start simply repeating the words to yourself MAY I BE HAPPY, MAY I BE WELL.

It is very simple, something we can all do, if you don't know what to do, do this.

Establish first a broad awareness of the body and your feelings and emotions, just as they are.

Maybe repeat the words in rhythm with your breathing. But don't do it mechanically, be open, aware, responsive.

Leave a pause between phrases, let emotions emerge in response to your words, notice responses, focus on them,

If we feel sadness, anger or other negative emotions, it is ok, don't need to avoid them,

just be aware of them and continue wishing yourself well.

Maybe other words or phrases will touch our deeper emotions, ok we can use other words, as long as they are positive.

2nd STAGE To a good friend. Bring them to mind and repeat these words. MAY THEY BE HAPPY, MAY THEY BE WELL

We develop kindness through keeping our mind concentrated on the positive emotions that we experience.

PRINCIPLE What we give our attention to grows.

Сейчас вы'берите хорошего друга или хорошую подругу вспомните его / её лицо и голос.

Внимательно почувствуйте свои эмоции к ним / ней такими, как они есть и повторите про себя:


MORE DEVELOPED PRACTICE.

In the first stage we develop kindness to ourselves again in various ways:

-Again using words, may I be happy, may I be free from suffering.

-Or are the emotions already there, can just focus on them.

-Bringing to mind our positive qualities, what others have said about us, what you want others to have said or noticed.

-Remembering a time when we were especially happy. Why were we so happy? Or very interested in something, or did it to a very high standard, or totally engaged.

In the second stage again to our friend:

-By continuing to use words.

-Maybe we already have positive emotions, then just focus on them.

-Bring to mind their positive qualities, intelligent, kind, beautiful, what is attractive, capture it in words, how to be like them.

-Reasons to be grateful, what they have done for us, given us.

-Radiate rays of kindness from your heart, rays of warm red light.

Notice the feeling that come up then concentrate on the positive ones.


FURTHER TEACHING Explain full practice, next few weeks doing first two stages then one more, looked at in more detail.

ALL SENTIENT BEINGS. GOAL To feel an uninterrupted flow of positive emotion to all that lives.

Normal fifth stage ends with the development of kindness to all living beings.

Someone once said, I love humanity, it is people I can't stand. It is not that.

HOW CAN WE DO THIS?

1/ Start with spreading out from us to the whole world.

2/ Words: may we be happy, may we be well.

3/ Traditional method: we radiate rays of kindness in all directions, rays of light.

Излучать доброту во всех направлениях.

4/ Bring to mind the different countries in the world, or the continents, where you have been and not.

Those that are attractive and not, rich and poor, cultured and not, stable and at peace and at war.

5/ Reflect that every being wants to be happy, to avoid pain, just like you do.

Just as intensely as you do, it is just as important to them as it is to you.

Look at someone and ask yourself how would I feel if that was what I looked like, if that was what my life was like,

if that was what I did. Exchanging self for other.


PRACTICE AT HOME

Try to meditate every day, or 3-4 times a week; 10, 20 or 30 minutes a day.

Start with самонаблудение, then development of kindness, can choose how many minutes for each, and for each stage.

Helps to find a regular place and time to meditate, for it to be calm around you, switch off your phone.

Leave time free before and after, otherwise jarring. Sometimes difficult, keep on, notice state of mind at beginning and end.

Repetition is key to success in meditation, come again, you haven't remembered everything.

Next week other practice, development of awareness, then come once a month to keep up the connection.


HOW TO PRACTICE IN EVERYDAY LIFE? AWARENESS of self and other, POSITIVE EXPRESSION for self and other

--PASSIVE We can be more aware of our feelings and emotions, get into the habit of самонаблудение.

--PASSIVE Be more aware of the people around us, take time to look at them, take time to feel them, be aware of their emotions, be aware of them as separate beings, what do they think and feel.

--ACTIVE Dwell on the positive in others and ourselves

--ACTIVE Rejoice in the merits of others and ourselves, practice putting peoples good qualities into words and tell them.

--ACTIVE Be more generous. --ACTIVE Be aware of our good qualities, what others say about us

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

«Буддизм: основы пути», Урген Сангхаракшита


Буддизм — это религия или философия? В чем основная разница между традициями Хинаяны, Махаяны и Ваджраяны? Обязательно ли нужно становиться монахом, чтобы практиковать буддизм? И, наконец, что такое буддизм? Это одни из немногих вопросов, сбивающих с толку всех интересующихся этой великой духовной традицией.

Книга «Буддизм: основы пути» - это удобная для чтения антология, являющаяся ясным и надежным проводником по многим граням буддизма: будь то Просветление самого Будды; путь практики, начинающийся с этики и приводящий через медитацию к мудрости; или природа и форма сообщества тех, кто следует пути.

После двадцати лет, проведенных в Индии с учителями всех основных традиций, Урген Сангхаракшита возвратился в Англию, чтобы основать там буддийскую общину «Триратна», в которой сейчас насчитывается более 60 центров по всему миру. Автор более 50 книг по буддизму, он глубоко уважается за свою интерпретацию основных учений буддизма в форме, доступной для современного мира.

Перевод с английского: А. Мевченко.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Что такое медитация? Учитесь медитировать.



Что такое медитация? Как правильно медитировать? Учитесь медитировать с помощью Суваннавиры, члена буддийского ордена "Триратна", который уже двадцать лет практикует медитацию и 10 лет преподает её в Париже и в Москве.

Я буду объяснять для начинающих: поза для медитации и что надо делать во время медитации. Также будет полезно, если вы регулярно медитируете и практикуете с другими.

Это - видео урок медитации "осознанное тело", которая является подготовкой для других практик буддийской медитаций - таких, как "осознанное дыхание" и "метта бхавана". Практика помогает в духовном развитии, глубоком расслаблении и свобождении от боли.

Вы можете также учиться медитировать в Москве:
http://buddhayana.ru/новости/items/медитация-буддтзи-в-москве-1.html

Видео - Патрик Ланж, снятое в Сопатовиче, Польша.

How to meditate? A guided meditation.




How to meditate? What is meditation? Find out for yourself and learn to meditate, even if you have never tried before, with this Guided Meditation. Everything is explained for you to immediately start a full length Mindfulness of the Body, or Body Scan. Included is an introduction to good posture, how to be upright and comfortable, during meditation.

You can also continue to practise along with this video long after your first attempt, or if you have learnt the basics of meditation and would like the support of meditating 'with others' or in a more structured way.

This meditation can be used as a preparation for other Buddhist meditations, and Buddhist spiritual practice in general; or simply as a way to relax more deeply and reduce stress for those of any religious or political persuasion.

The meditation is led by Suvannavira, member of the Triratna Buddhist Order, who has been meditating for over 20 years, and teaching meditation and Buddhism in Paris and Moscow for 10. You can also watch this video in French or Russian.

For details of Meditation Classes near you click here:
http://thebuddhistcentre.com/text/triratna-around-world

Video by Patryk Lange. Filmed at Sopatowiec, Poland.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Majjhima Nikaya 26: Ariyapariyesana Sutta, The Noble Quest


Adapted from translations from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu and David W. Evans.

Thus have I heard,
Once the Blessed One was staying at Savatthi, in the Jeta Grove, at Anathapindika's park.  Then early in the morning, having put on his robes and carrying his bowl and outer robe, he went into Savatthi for alms.

Then a number of Bhikkhus went to the Venerable Ananda and said:
"It has been a long time, friend Ananda, since we have heard a Dhamma talk in the Blessed One's presence.
It would be good if we could get to hear a Dhamma talk in the Blessed One's presence."

"In that case, venerable ones, go to the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman.
Perhaps you will get to hear a Dhamma talk in the Blessed One's presence."

"As you say, friend," the Bhikkhus replied to the Venerable Ananda and left.

Then the Blessed One, having gone for alms, after his meal, on returning from his alms round, said to the Venerable Ananda:
"Ananda, let's go to the Eastern Park, the palace of Migara's mother, for the day's abiding."

"As you say, lord," the Venerable Ananda replied to the Blessed One.

So the Blessed One, together with the Venerable Ananda, went to the Eastern Park, the palace of Migara's mother, for the day's abiding.
Then in the evening, emerging from seclusion, he said to the Venerable Ananda:
"Ananda, let's go to the Eastern Gatehouse to bathe our limbs."

"As you say, lord,"
the Venerable Ananda replied to the Blessed One.

So the Blessed One, together with the Venerable Ananda, went to the Eastern Gatehouse to bathe his limbs.
Having bathed his limbs at the Eastern Gatehouse, coming out of the water, he stood in his lower robe, drying his limbs.

Then the Venerable Ananda said to him:
"Lord, the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman is not far away.
Pleasing is the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman.
Delightful is the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman.
It would be good if the Blessed One went to the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman out of compassion."
The Blessed One consented in silence.

So the Blessed One went to the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman.
Now at that time a number of Bhikkhus had gathered in the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman for a Dhamma discussion.
The Blessed One stood outside the door waiting for the discussion to end.
On knowing that the discussion had ended, clearing his throat, he tapped at the door.
The Bhikkhus opened the door for him.
Entering the hermitage of Rammaka the brahman, the Blessed One sat down on a ready made seat.
As he was sitting there, he addressed the Bhikkhus:
"For what discussion are you gathered together here?
In the midst of what discussion have you been interrupted?"

"Lord, our interrupted Dhamma discussion was about the Blessed One himself, and then the Blessed One arrived."

"Good, Bhikkhus.
It's fitting that you, as sons of good families who have gone forth out of faith from home to the homeless life, should gather for Dhamma discussion.
When you have gathered you have two purposes:
either Dhamma discussion or noble silence.

"Bhikkhus, there are these two quests: the ariyan and the unariyan. And what is the unariyan quest?

There is the case where a person, being subject himself to birth, seeks happiness in what is likewise subject to birth.
Being subject himself subject to aging, seeks happiness in what is likewise subject to aging.
Being subject himself to illness, seeks happiness in what is likewise subject to illness.
Being subject himself to death, seeks happiness in what is likewise subject to death.
Being subject himself to sorrow, seeks happiness in what is likewise subject to sorrow.
Being subject himself to defilement, seeks happiness in what is likewise subject to defilment.

"And what may be said to be subject to birth?
Spouses and children are subject to birth, men and women slaves, goats and sheep, fowl and pigs, elephants, cattle, horses and mares, and gold and silver are subject to birth.  Subject to birth are these acquisitions, and one who is tied to them, infatuated with them, who has totally fallen for them, being subject to birth, seeks what is likewise subject to birth.

"And what may be said to be subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement?
Spouses and children, men and women slaves, goats and sheep, fowl and pigs, elephants, cattle, horses and mares, and gold and silver are subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement.  Subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement are these acquisitions, and one who is tied to them, infatuated with them, who has totally fallen for them, being subject  to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement, seeks what is likewise subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement.
This is unariyan quest.

"And what is the ariyan quest?
There is the case where a person, himself being subject to birth, seeing the drawbacks of birth, seeks the unborn, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana. Himself being subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement, seeing the drawbacks of aging, of illness, of death, of sorrow, of defilement, seeks the unaging, disease-free, deathless, sorrow-less, undefiled, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana.
This is the ariyan quest.

"I, too, Bhikkhus, before my Enlightenment, when I was an unawakened bodhisatta, being subject myself to birth, sought what was likewise subject to birth. Being subject myself to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement, I sought happiness in what was likewise subject to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement.

Then the thought occurred to me:
'Why do I live like this?  What if I, being subject myself to birth, seeing the drawbacks of birth, were to seek the unborn, unexcelled release from bondage:Nirvana? What if I, being subject myself to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement, seeing the drawbacks of aging, of illness, of death, of sorrow, of defilement, were to seek the unaging, disease-free, deathless, sorrow-less, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana?'

"So, at a later time, while still young, a black-haired young man, endowed with the blessings of youth, in early manhood — and while my parents, unwilling, were crying with tears streaming down their faces — I shaved off my hair and beard, put on the yellow robe, and went forth from the home life into homelessness.

"Having thus gone forth in search of what is skilled, seeking the unexcelled state of sublime peace, I went to Alara Kalama and, on arrival, said to him:
'Friend Kalama, I want to practice this dhamma and discipline.'

"When this was said, he replied to me:
'You may stay here, my friend. This dhamma is such that an intelligent man can soon learn and experience his own teacher's knowledge, having realized it for himself through direct knowledge.'

"It was not long before I quickly learned this dhamma. As far as mere verbal mastery and repetition, I could speak the words of knowledge, the words of an elder, and I could claim that I knew and saw — I, along with others.

"I thought:
'It isn't through mere faith alone that Alara Kalama declares:
"I have learned and experienced this dhamma, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge."
Certainly he lives knowing and seeing this dhamma.'
So I went to him and said:
'To what extent do you declare that you have learned and experienced this dhamma?'
When this was said, he declared the sphere of no-thing-ness.

"I thought:
'Not only does Alara Kalama have faith, I too have faith.
'Not only does Alara Kalama have energy, I too have energy.
'Not only does Alara Kalama have mindfulness, I too have mindfulness.
'Not only does Alara Kalama have concentration, I too have concentration.
'Not only does Alara Kalama have wisdom, I too have wisdom.
What if I were to strive to realize for myself this dhamma that Alara Kalama declares he has learned and experiences, having realized it for himself through direct knowledge.'
So it was not long before I quickly learned and experienced in this dhamma, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge.
I went to him and said:
'Friend Kalama, is this the extent to which you have learned and experinced this dhamma, having realized it for yourself through direct knowledge?'
"'Yes, my friend...'
"'This, friend, is the extent to which I, too, have learned and experienced this dhamma, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge.'

"'It is a gain for us, my friend, a great gain for us, that we have such a companion in the holy life. So the dhamma I declare I have learned and experienced, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge, is the dhamma you declare you have learned and experienced, having realized it for yourself through direct knowledge. And the dhamma you declare you have learned and experienced, having realized it for yourself through direct knowledge, is the dhamma I declare I have learned and experienced, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge.
The dhamma I know is the dhamma you know; the dhamma you know is the dhamma I know.
As I am, so are you; as you are, so am I.
Come friend, let us now lead this community together.'

"In this way did Alara Kalama, my teacher, place me, his pupil, on the same level with himself and paid me a great honor.
But the thought occurred to me:
'This dhamma leads not to disenchantment, to dispassion, to cessation, to calm, to direct knowledge, to Enlightenment, nor to Nirvana,
but only to reappearance in the sphere of no-thing-ness.'
So, dissatisfied with that dhamma, I left.

"Having thus gone forth in search of what is skilled, seeking the unexcelled state of sublime peace, I went to Uddaka Ramaputta and, on arrival, said to him:
'Friend Ramaputta, I want to practice this dhamma and discipline.'

"When this was said, he replied to me:
'You may stay here, my friend. This dhamma is such that an intelligent man can soon learn and experience his own teacher's knowledge, having realized it for himself through direct knowledge.'

"It was not long before I quickly learned this dhamma. As far as mere verbal mastery and repetition, I could speak the words of knowledge, the words of an elder, and I could claim that I knew and saw — I, along with others.

"I thought:
'It isn't through mere faith alone that Uddaka Ramaputta declares:
"I have learned and experienced this dhamma, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge."
Certainly he lives knowing and seeing this dhamma.'
So I went to him and said:
'To what extent do you declare that you have learned and experienced this dhamma?'
When this was said, he declared the sphere of neither perception nor non-perception.

"I thought:
'Not only does Uddaka Ramaputta have faith, I too have faith.
'Not only does Uddaka Ramaputta have energy, I too have energy.
'Not only does Uddaka Ramaputta have mindfulness, I too have mindfulness.
'Not only does Uddaka Ramaputta have concentration, I too have concentration.
'Not only does Uddaka Ramaputta have wisdom, I too have wisdom.
What if I were to strive to realize for myself this dhamma that Uddaka Ramaputta declares he has learned and experiences, having realized it for himself through direct knowledge.'
So it was not long before I quickly learned and experienced in this dhamma, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge.
I went to him and said:
'Friend Ramaputta, is this the extent to which you have learned and experinced this dhamma, having realized it for yourself through direct knowledge?'
"'Yes, my friend...'
"'This, friend, is the extent to which I, too, have learned and experienced this dhamma, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge.'

"'It is a gain for us, my friend, a great gain for us, that we have such a companion in the holy life. So the dhamma I declare I have learned and experienced, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge, is the dhamma you declare you have learned and experienced, having realized it for yourself through direct knowledge. And the dhamma you declare you have learned and experienced, having realized it for yourself through direct knowledge, is the dhamma I declare I have learned and experienced, having realized it for myself through direct knowledge.
The dhamma I know is the dhamma you know; the dhamma you know is the dhamma I know.
As I am, so are you; as you are, so am I.
Come friend, let us now lead this community together.'

"In this way did Uddaka Ramaputta, my teacher, place me, his pupil, on the same level with himself and paid me a great honor.
But the thought occurred to me:
'This dhamma leads not to disenchantment, to dispassion, to cessation, to calm, to direct knowledge, to Enlightenment, nor to Nirvana,
but only to reappearance in the sphere of neither perception nor non-perception.'
So, dissatisfied with that dhamma, I left.

"In search of what is skilled, seeking the unexcelled state of sublime peace, I wandered by stages in the Magadhan country and came to the military town of Uruvela. There I saw some delightful countryside, with an inspiring forest grove, a clear-flowing river with fine, delightful banks, and villages for alms-going on all sides.

The thought occurred to me:
'How delightful is this countryside, with its inspiring forest grove, clear-flowing river with fine, delightful banks, and villages for alms-going on all sides.
This is just right for the striving of a man intent on striving.'
So I sat down right there, thinking:
'This is just right for striving.'

Then, Bhikkhis, being subject myself to birth, seeing the drawbacks of birth, seeking the unborn, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana, I reached the unborn, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana. Being myself subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement, seeing the drawbacks of aging, of illness, of death, of sorrow, of defilement, seeking the unaging, disease-free, deathless, sorrow-less, undefiled, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana, I reached the unaging, disease-free, deathless, sorrow-less, undefiled, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana.

Knowledge and vision arose in me:
'Unshakeable is my release.
This is the final birth.
There is now no further becoming.'

"Then the thought occurred to me:
'This Dhamma that I have attained is deep, hard to see, hard to realize, peaceful, exalted, beyond the scope of reason, subtle, to-be-experienced only by the wise.
But this generation delights in attachment, is excited by attachment, enjoys attachment.
For them, it is hard to discern the conditioned nature of things, and their causes.
For them, it is hard to discern the calming of all tendencies, the relinquishment of all acquisitions, the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Nirvana.
And if I were to teach the Dhamma and others would not understand me, that would be tiresome for me, troublesome for me.'

"Just then these verses, unspoken in the past, unheard before, occurred to me:

'Enough now with teaching what only with difficulty I reached.
This Dhamma is not easily realized by those overcome with aversion & passion.
What is abstruse, subtle, deep, hard to see, going against the flow —
those delighting in passion, cloaked in the mass of darkness, won't see.'

"As I reflected thus, my mind inclined to dwelling at ease, not to teaching the Dhamma.

"Then Brahma Sahampati, having known with his own awareness the line of thinking in my awareness, thought:
'The world is lost! The world is destroyed!
The mind of the Tathagata, the Arahant, the Truely Self-awakened One inclines to dwelling at ease, not to teaching the Dhamma!'
Then, just as a strong man might extend his flexed arm or flex his extended arm,
Brahma Sahampati disappeared from the Brahma-world and appeared in front of me.
Arranging his upper robe over one shoulder, he knelt down with his right knee on the ground, saluted me with his hands before his heart, and said to me:
'Lord, let the Blessed One teach the Dhamma!
Let the One-Well-Gone teach the Dhamma!
There are beings with but little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma.
There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.'

"That is what Brahma Sahampati said.
Having said that, he further said this:

'In the past there appeared among the Magadhans an impure Dhamma devised by the stained.
Throw open the door to the Deathless!
Let them hear the Dhamma realized by the Stainless One!

Just as one standing on a mountain summit might see people all around below,
So, O wise one, with all-around vision, ascend the palace fashioned of Dhamma.
Free from sorrow, behold the people submerged in sorrow, oppressed by birth and aging.

Rise up, hero, victor in battle!
O Teacher without debt in the world, walk in the world.
Teach the Dhamma, O Blessed One:
There will be those who will understand.'

"Then, having understood Brahma's entreaty, out of compassion for beings, I surveyed the world with the eye of an Awakened One.
As I did so, I saw beings with but little dust in their eyes and those with much,
those with keen faculties and those with dull,
those with good attributes and those with bad,
those easy to teach and those hard,
some of them seeing disgrace and danger in the other world.

Just as in a pond of blue or red or white lotuses,
some lotuses — born & growing in the water — might flourish while immersed in the water, without rising up from the water;
some might stand at an even level with the water;
while some might rise up from the water and stand without being smeared by the water —
so too, surveying the world with the eye of an Awakened One,
I saw beings with but little dust in their eyes and those with much,
those with keen faculties and those with dull,
those with good attributes and those with bad,
those easy to teach and those hard,
some of them seeing disgrace and danger in the other world.

"Having seen this, I answered Brahma Sahampati in verse:
'Open are the doors to the Deathless to those with ears.
Let them show their faith.
Perceiving trouble, O Brahma,
I did not tell people the refined, sublime Dhamma.'

"Then Brahma Sahampati, thinking:
'The Blessed One has given his consent to teach the Dhamma,'
bowed down to me and, circling me on the right, disappeared right there.

"Then the thought occurred to me:
'To whom should I teach the Dhamma first? Who will quickly understand this Dhamma?'

Then the thought occurred to me:
'This Alara Kalama is wise, competent, intelligent.
He has long had but little dust in his eyes.
What if I were to teach him the Dhamma first? He will quickly understand this Dhamma.'

Then devas came to me and said:
'Lord, Alara Kalama died seven days ago.'

And knowledge and vision arose within me:
'Alara Kalama died seven days ago.'

The thought occurred to me:
'A great loss has Alara Kalama suffered. If he had heard this Dhamma, he would have quickly understood it.'

"Then the thought occurred to me:
'To whom should I teach the Dhamma first? Who will quickly understand this Dhamma?'

Then the thought occurred to me:
'This Uddaka Ramaputta is wise, competent, intelligent. He has long had but little dust in his eyes.
What if I were to teach him the Dhamma first? He will quickly understand this Dhamma.'

Then devas came to me and said:
'Lord, Uddaka Ramaputta died last night.'

And knowledge and vision arose within me:
'Uddaka Ramaputta died last night.'

The thought occurred to me:
'A great loss has Uddaka Ramaputta suffered. If he had heard this Dhamma, he would have quickly understood it.'

"Then the thought occurred to me:
'To whom should I teach the Dhamma first? Who will quickly understand this Dhamma?'

Then the thought occurred to me:
'They were very helpful to me, the group of five monks who attended to me when I was engaged in the austerities.
What if I were to teach them the Dhamma first?'

Then the thought occurred to me:
'Where are the group of five monks staying now?'
And with the divine eye, purified and surpassing the human, I saw that they were staying near Varanasi in the Deer Park at Isipatana.

"Then, having stayed at Uruvela as long as I liked, I set out to wander by stages to Varanasi.

Upaka the Ajivaka saw me on the road between Gaya and the (place of) Awakening, and on seeing me said to me:
'Clear, my friend, are your faculties. Pure your complexion, and bright.
For whom did you go forth? Who is your teacher? Whose Dhamma do you profess?'

"When this was said, I replied to Upaka the Ajivaka in verses:

'All-vanquishing, all-knowing am I,
with regard to all things, unattached.

All-abandoning, released by the ending of craving:
having fully known on my own, to whom should I show as my teacher?

I have no teacher, and one like me is not to be found.
In the world with its devas, I have no counterpart.

For I am an Arahant in the world;
I, the unexcelled teacher.
I, alone, am truely self-awakened.
Cooled am I, unbound.

To set rolling the wheel of Dhamma
I go to the city of Kasi.
In a world become blind,
I beat the drum of the Deathless.'

"'From your claims, my friend, you must be a conqueror without limit.'

'Conquerors are those like me
who have rooted out the poisons.
I've conquered evil states,
and so, Upaka, I'm a conqueror.'

"When this was said, Upaka said:
'May it be so, my friend,'
and — shaking his head, taking a different road — he left.

"Then, wandering by stages, I arrived at Varanasi, at the Deer Park in Isipatana, where the group of five monks were staying.

From afar they saw me coming and, on seeing me, made a pact with one another, saying:
'Friends, here the ascetic Gotama: living in comfort, having abandoned his exertions, and returning to abundance.
He doesn't deserve to be bowed down to, to be greeted by standing up, or to have his robe and bowl received.
Still, a seat should be set out; if he wants to, he can sit down.'

But as I approached, they were unable to keep to their pact.
One, standing up to greet me, received my robe and bowl.
Another spread out a seat.
Another set out water for washing my feet.
However, they addressed me by name and as 'friend.'

"So I said to them:
'Don't address the Tathagata  by name and as "friend."
The Tathagata, friends, is an Arahant, truely self-awakened.
Lend ear, friends: the Deathless has been attained.
I will instruct you.
I will teach you the Dhamma.
Practicing as instructed, you will in no long time reach and remain in the supreme goal of the holy life
for which sons of good family rightly go forth from home into homelessness,
knowing and realizing it for yourselves in the here and now.'

"When this was said, the group of five monks replied to me:
'By that practice, that conduct, that performance of austerities you did not attain any super human states,
any knowledge and vision worthy of a noble one.
So how can you now — living in luxury, having abandoned your exertions, returning to abundance — have attained any super human states,
any knowledge and vision worthy of a noble one?'

"When this was said, I replied to them:
The Tathagata, Bikkhus, is not living in luxury, has not abandoned his exertions, has not returned to abundance.
The Tathagata, friends, is an Arahant, truely self-awakened.
Lend ear, friends: the Deathless has been attained.
I will instruct you.
I will teach you the Dhamma.
Practicing as instructed, you will in no long time reach and remain in the supreme goal of the holy life
for which sons of good family rightly go forth from home into homelessness,
knowing and realizing it for yourselves in the here and now.'

A second time...
A third time, the group of five Bhikkhus said to me:
'By that practice, that conduct, that performance of austerities you did not attain any super human states,
any knowledge and vision worthy of a noble one.
So how can you now — living in luxury, having abandoned your exertions, returning to abundance — have attained any super human states,
any knowledge and vision worthy of a noble one?'

"When this was said, I replied to the group of five Bhikkhus:
'Do you recall my ever having spoken in this way before?'

"'No, lord.'

The Tathagata, Bikkhus, is not living in luxury, has not abandoned his exertions, has not returned to abundance.
The Tathagata, friends, is an Arahant, truely self-awakened.
Lend ear, friends: the Deathless has been attained.
I will instruct you.
I will teach you the Dhamma.
Practicing as instructed, you will in no long time reach and remain in the supreme goal of the holy life
for which sons of good family rightly go forth from home into homelessness,
knowing and realizing it for yourselves in the here and now.'

"And so I was able to convince them.
I would teach two Bhikkhus while three went for alms, and we six lived off what the three brought back from their alms round.
Then I would teach three Bhikkhus while two went for alms, and we six lived off what the two brought back from their alms round.
Then the group of five Bhikkhus — thus exhorted, thus instructed by me — being subject themselves to birth, seeing the drawbacks of birth, seeking the unborn, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana, reached the unborn, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana. Being themselves subject to aging, to illness, to death, to sorrow, to defilement, seeing the drawbacks of aging, of illness, of death, of sorrow, of defilement, seeking the unaging, disease-free, deathless, sorrow-less, undefiled, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana, reached the unaging, disease-free, deathless, sorrow-less, undefiled, unexcelled release from bondage: Nirvana.

Knowledge and vision arose in them:
'Unshakeable is our release.
This is the final birth.
There is now no further becoming.'

"Bhikkhus, there are these five strands of sensuality.
Which five?
Forms cognizable via the eye — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing.
Sounds cognizable via the ear — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing.
Aromas cognizable via the nose — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing.
Tastes cognizable via the tongue — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing.
Tactile sensations cognizable via the body — agreeable, pleasing, charming, endearing, fostering desire, enticing.
These are the five strands of sensuality.

"And any ascetics or brahmans tied to these five strands of sensuality —
infatuated with them, are greedy and eager for them, not seeing their dangers nor discerning the escape from them —
should be known as having met with misfortune, having met with ruin;
Mara can do with them as he will.

Just as if a wild deer were to lie bound on a heap of snares:
it should be known as having met with misfortune, having met with ruin;
the hunter can do with it as he will.
When the hunter comes, it won't get away as it would like.

In the same way, any ascetics or brahmans tied to these five strands of sensuality —
infatuated with them, are greedy and eager for them, not seeing their dangers nor discerning the escape from them —
should be known as having met with misfortune, having met with ruin;
Mara can do with them as he will.

"But any ascetics or brahmans not tied to these five strings of sensuality —
uninfatuated with them, not greedy and eager for them, seeing their dangers and discerning the escape from them —
should be known as not having met with misfortune, not having met with ruin;
Mara cannot do with them as he will.

Just as if a wild deer were to lie unbound on a heap of snares:
it should be known as not having met with misfortune, not having met with ruin;
the hunter cannot do with it as he will.
When the hunter comes, it will get away as it would like.

In the same way, any brahmans or contemplatives not tied to these five strings of sensuality —
uninfatuated with them, not greedy and eager for them, seeing their dangers and discerning the escape from them —
should be known as not having met with misfortune, not having met with ruin;
Mara cannot do with them as he will.

"Suppose that a wild deer is living in forest slopes.
Carefree it walks, carefree it stands, carefree it sits, carefree it lies down.
Why is that?
Because it has gone beyond the hunter's sight.

In the same way, a Bhikkhu —
quite withdrawn from sensual pleasures, withdrawn from unskillful states —
enters and abides in the first jhana: with rapture and pleasure, born of withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought and evaluation.
This Bhikkhu is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the stilling of directed thoughts and evaluations,
enters and abides in the second jhana: with rapture and pleasure born of composure,
oneness of mind, free from directed thought and evaluation — internal assurance.
This Bhikkhu is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the fading of rapture, remains equanimous, mindful and alert, and senses pleasure with the body.
He enters and abides in the third jhana, of which the Noble Ones declare:
'Equanimous and mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.'
This Bhikkhu is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the abandoning of pleasure and pain — as with the disappearance of former gladness and sadness —
enters and abides in the fourth jhana: with purity of equanimity and mindfulness, with neither-pleasure-nor-pain.
This Bhikkhu is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the complete transcending of perceptions of physical form,
with the disappearance of perceptions of resistance, and not heeding perceptions of diversity,
perceiving 'Infinite space,' enters and abides in the sphere of the infinite space.
This Bhikkhu is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the complete transcending of the sphere of infinite of space,
perceiving 'Infinite consciousness,' enters and abides in the sphere of infinite consciousness.
This monk is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the complete transcending of the sphere of infinite consciousness,
perceiving 'There is nothing,' enters and abides in the sphere of nothingness.
This monk is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the complete transcending of the sphere of nothingness,
enters and abides in the sphere of neither perception nor non-perception.
This monk is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.

"Then again the Bhikkhu, with the complete transcending of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception,
enters and abides in the cessation of perception and feeling.
And, having seen with discernment, his mental fermentations are completely ended.
This Bhikkhu is said to have blinded Mara.
Trackless, he has destroyed Mara's vision and has become invisible to the Evil One.
Having crossed over, he is unattached in the world.
Carefree he walks, carefree he stands, carefree he sits, carefree he lies down.
Why is that?
Because he has gone beyond the Evil One's sight."

That is what the Blessed One said.
Gratified, the Bhikkhu delighted in the Blessed One's words.