Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Whose is this Buddhism?

Ajahn Khamdee via Ven. Sujato; Dhr. Seven, Ellie Askew, Crystal Q. (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

[Who is the] Owner of Practice?
Thank you for the Dharma.
There are three sorts of Dharma: the Dharma of theory, the Dharma of practice, and the Dharma of attainment.

The Dharma of theory refers to the teachings of the Buddha: the discourses (sutras), the (monastic) discipline, and the higher teachings (Abhidharma), all "84,000" sections of the Pali language canon. This sort of Dharma is everyone's common property.

As for practice and attainment, they're the individual property of those who do them.

The Dharma as the teachings: sutras/discourses.
For example, [one of the Buddha's four chief disciples, two of them nuns, two of them monks like] Ven. Moggallana's practice was his own practice. His attainment of the paths and fruitions leading to nirvana was his own attainment.

The same holds true for [the other chief male disciple] Ven. Sariputra and each of the noble disciples, all the way down to all of us practicing here [and now].

The practice and attainments of each person are that person's very own. It's like our own land and fields. They belong to us individually; they are not common property.

[Therefore, it is wise to take our common property and make it our own, take the Dharma (teaching) and make it our own. For our practice of it and attainment through it will be our own. Only then will we really benefit from what the Buddha made known.]

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