Saturday, August 5, 2017

How sex differences and lust began (sutra)

Maurice O'C. Walshe (trans.), Agganna Sutra (DN 27) from The Long Discourses of the Buddha, Wisdom Publications (Boston); edited by Dhr. Seven, Ashley Wells, Wisdom Quarterly PART 2/3

In the beginning...
"...And as they did so, their bodies became coarser still, and the difference in their looks became even greater.

"And the females developed female sex-organs, and the males developed male organs.

"And the women became excessively preoccupied with men, and the men with women.

Do it to me filthy, you beast! - I'm trying!
"Owing to this excessive preoccupation with each other, passion was aroused, and their bodies burned with lust [sexual desire].

"And later, because of this burning, they indulged in sexual activity. But those who saw them indulging threw dust, ashes or [89] cow dung at them, crying: 'Die, you filthy beast! How can one being do such things to another?!'

Queen Maya giving birth to Prince Siddhartha under sal tree in Lumbini, Gandhara (WQ)
"Just as today, in some districts [of India], when a daughter-in-law is led out, some people throw dirt at her, some ashes, and some cow dung, without realizing that they are repeating an ancient observance. What was considered bad form in those days is now considered good form.
17. "And those beings who in those days indulged in sex were not allowed into village or town for one or two months.

"Accordingly, those who indulged for an excessively long period in such base practices began to build themselves dwellings so as to indulge under cover.

"Now it occurred to one of those beings who was inclined to laziness: 'Well now, why should I be bothered to gather rice in the evening for supper and in the morning for breakfast? Why shouldn't I gather it all at once for both meals?' and did so. Then another one came and said: 'Come on, let's go rice-gathering.'

"'No need, my friend, I've gathered enough for both meals.' Then the other, following this example, gathered enough rice for two days at a time, saying: 'That should be about enough.' Then another being came and said to the second one: 'Come on, let's go rice-gathering.'

"'No need, my friend, I've gathered enough for two days.'
  • (The same goes for 4, then 8, days).

"However, when those beings made a store of rice and lived on that, husk-powder and husk began to envelop the grain, and where it was reaped it did not grow again, and the cut place showed, and the rice grew in separate clusters.

18. "And then those beings came together lamenting: 'Unwholesome ways have become rife among us: at first we were mind-made, feeding on delight.
(All events repeated down to the latest development, each fresh change being said to be due to 'unwholesome and unskillful ways')... [91] [92] and the rice grows in separate clusters. So now let us divide up the rice into fields with boundaries.' So they did so.
You just gotta grab 'em by the purse, guys.
19. "Then, Vasettha, one greedy-natured being, while watching over his own plot, took another plot that was not given to him, and enjoyed the fruits of it. So they seized hold of him and said: 
"'You've done an unwholesome thing, taking another's plot like that! Don't ever do such a thing again!'

"'I won't,' he said, but he did the same thing a second and a third time. Again he was seized and rebuked, and some hit him with their fists, some with stones, and some with sticks. And in this way, Vasettha, taking what was not given, and censuring, and lying, and punishment, originated.
20. "Then those beings came together and lamented the arising of these unwholesome things among them: taking what was not given, censuring, lying, and punishment. And they thought:

"'Suppose we were to appoint a certain being who would show anger where anger was due, censure those who deserved it, and banish those who deserved banishment! And in return, we would grant that being a share of the rice.'

[93] "So they went to the one among them who was the handsomest, the best looking, the most pleasant and capable, and asked that being to do this for them in return for a share of the rice, and that being agreed.

21. "'The People's Choice' is the meaning of Maha-Sammata, which is the first regular title to be introduced. 'Lord Of The Fields' is the meaning of khattiya [now translated as warrior-caste member, administrator, or noble], the second such title.

"And 'One Who Gladdens Others With Dharma' is the meaning of Raja [now "Royal" or "King"], the third title to be introduced. This, then, Vasettha, is the origin of the class of khattiyas [warriors, rulers], in accordance with the ancient titles that were introduced for them.

"They originated among these very same beings, like ourselves, no different, and in accordance with Dharma, not otherwise.

Dharma is the best thing for people
In this life and the next as well.

22. "Then some of these beings thought: 'Unwholesome things have appeared among beings, such as taking what is not given, censuring, lying, punishment and banishment. We ought to put aside unwholesome and unskillful things.' And they did [94] so.

"'They Put Aside Unwholesome And Unskillful Things' is the meaning of Brahmin, which is the first regular title to be introduced for such people. They made leaf-huts in forest places and meditated in them. More

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