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Dharma Sunday: Aggañña, Dīgha Nikāya 27; Vacchagotta, Aṅguttara Nikāya 3.57"

CarlitaCarlita Bastian please! Save us!United States Veteran

One whose faith in the Tathāgata is settled, fixed, established, firm, unshaken by any monk or brahmin, by any god, Māra, Brahma or anyone in the world, can confidently say: ‘I am the true child of the Lord, born of Dhamma, created by Dhamma, an heir of Dhamma.’
Aggañña, Dīgha Nikāya 27


Vacchagotta said to the Lord: “I have heard it said that you, good Gotama, teach that charity should only be given to you, not to others, to your followers, not to the followers of other teachers. Are those who say this representing your opinion without distorting it? Do they speak according to your teaching? For indeed, good Gotama, I am anxious not to misrepresent you.”

The Lord replied: “Vaccha, those who say this are not of my opinion, they misrepresent me and say what is not true. Truly, whoever discourages another from giving charity hinders them in three ways. What three? He hinders the giver from acquiring good, he hinders the receiver from receiving the charity, and he has already ruined himself through his meanness.”
Vacchagotta, Aṅguttara Nikāya 3.57




  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Well there are two points of discussion here, but I'll be honest, to me, it looks pretty clear-cut and self-explanatory. (It's 07:00 here. Early start.) Seems a clear lesson in what's true and what's right.


  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    I find the discussion of faith in the dhamma to be interesting. Often people mix and match some beliefs of Buddhism, but still are convinced by the approach of “ehi passiko” and consider themselves of firm faith in the dhamma because they have seen the truth of its approach. So even while there is no ‘one true buddhism’ one can still have faith...

    The second sutra shows that one can ruin oneself through meanness. I think it’s a good one to be aware of in such a materialist world, where so many people chase after money.

  • SnakeskinSnakeskin Veteran
    edited January 2018

    DN 27 is a lot to digest. I’ll summarize my understanding of one aspect of it like so. While sitting in meditation this morning, my body, speech and mind was restrained. It was pure, peaceful. That is the standard. As the day unfolds, continue in accordance with the standard.

    Edit: The two suttas have a shared theme, one MLK also famously articulated:

    I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

    Both suttas likewise elevate individual character over class or associations. AN 3.57 goes on to say all giving, including getting rid of stuff, is good when done with goodwill, but when directed to those of character, it's like a sound investment.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    These things are still kicking around in my brain, which is very dull this morning.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    (Count your blessings; at least you have one... Me? The Jury's out....)

  • Don't eat dirt with your finger. It solidifies your body. If I spoke that, someone would ask, "You OK?" But, since yesterday, it's stuck with me. It's helpful. The first sutta's imagery is vivid. It might best be left unanalyzed. Read, seen, internalized.

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