Saturday, April 4, 2020

Laugh Aid: Comedy Central (live video)

Laugh Aid (Comedy Central); Seth Auberon, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly



🔴 LIVE NOW: Laugh Aid
(Comedy Central) Comedy stars raise money for comics struggling during the pandemic fundraiser. Welcome to Laugh Aid, where comedy stars -- including Bill Burr, Jim Gaffigan, and Hannibal Buress -- are coming together (while staying safely at home) to help out rising comics who are struggling to make ends meet during this crisis.

This multi-hour livestream fundraiser is brought to you by Comedy Central and Comedy Gives Back, and features stand-up, podcasts, interviews, sketches and sneak peeks of unseen projects. (Contains strong language). DONATE HERE: cc.com/laughaid. For more info about Comedy Gives Back:

Emptiness is the Greatest (Ajahn Brahm)

Imgur;Ajahn Brahm (BSWA); Pfc. Sandoval, Seth Auberon, A. Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

(Imgur.com, 3/28/20) APCs shipping through the high desert [heading toward Los Angeles, CA]

Emptiness is the Greatest
Ajahn Brahm spoke on March 26, 2020 at the Buddhist Society of Western Australia (BSWA). This Dharma talk on "emptiness" (sunnata = anatta, the egoless, selfless, and impersonal nature of all things) is from a series of daily meditation and Dhamma teachings offered by the monks at Bodhinyana Monastery to support the community during the coronavirus pandemic. To support the BSWA in making teachings available for free online via Patreon.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Listen, Liberal: Dems screw us (comedy)

Jimmy Dore (TJDS); Family Guy; Thomas Frank; S. Auberon, Pfc. Sandoval, Wisdom Quarterly
WARNING: F-word, obscenity-laced, angry rant! Maverick comedian Jimmy Dore calls everyone out.

Bestselling author Thomas Frank takes a close look at "liberals." It asks, What's the matter with Democrats?

As liberals we think, "If only Democrats dominate national elections, if only we beat those awful Republicans into submission, the country will be fine." To think so is to fundamentally misunderstand the modern Democratic party.



What's the Matter With America?
Drawing on years of research and firsthand reporting, he points out that Democratic politicians have done very little for liberal goals:
  • expanding opportunity
  • fighting for social justice
  • ensuring workers get a fair deal.
These Democrats have barely dented the consensus that a free market is the answer to everything. It's not for lack of being in a position to: Democrats have occupied the White House for 16 of the past 24 years up to 2016. Meanwhile, the decline of the middle class has only accelerated.

Democrat leader Nancy Pelosi wants tax cuts for the rich. WTF?!
. 
Bernie Sanders: I just want to fit in for once.
Wall Street gets bailouts, wages keep falling, and free trade deals keep coming. With sardonic wit and lacerating logic, Frank lays bare the essence of the Democratic party's philosophy and how it has changed over the years.

Corporate and cultural elitism has eclipsed the party's old working class commitment. For favored groups, this has meant prosperity. For the nation, it has been a one-way ticket to inequality. More

Ajahn Chah: knowing the nature of things

Ajahn Chah (ajahnchah.org) via Ven. Sujato, Ellie Askew, Dhr. Seven (ed.), Wisdom Quarterly

What is the suchness he awakened to?
When we realize dhamma [nature, suchness, what is just as it is], wherever we sit, we know the Dhamma [the Dharma, the Buddha’s Teaching]; wherever we are, we hear the Buddha’s Teaching.

When we understand Dhamma, the Buddha is within our mind [heart], the Dhamma is within our mind, and the practice-leading-to-wisdom is within our mind.

Having the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the [Enlightened-] Saṅgha within our mind means that whether our actions are, good or bad, we know clearly for ourselves their true nature.

Thai Forest  Kammathana
That is how the Buddha [Tathagatha] discarded worldly opinions, praise and blame, compliments and criticism. When people praised or criticized him, he just accepted it for what it was [tathātā, thusness, just that].

These two things [praise and blame] are simply worldly conditions, so he wasn’t shaken by them. Why not? Because he knew dukkha [disappointment, suffering, distress, ill, unsatisfactoriness]:

He knew that if he believed in that praise or blame, they would cause him to be disappointed, to stress, to suffer.

Bhikkhu Bodhi message: the lesson of corona

Bhikkhu Bodhi (BAUS, Bodhi Monastery); Ellie Askew, Dhr. Seven (ed.), Wisdom Quarterly

Theravada scholar-monk Bhikkhu Bodhi
...In the long run, this epidemic may be teaching us a powerful lesson about the imperative of fundamental social transformation, pushing us to lay the foundations for a more equitable society and a more sustainable world.

It is unconscionable that here, in the most affluent nation on earth, the least among us languish in their time of urgent need. The time is ripe for us to see that everyone’s basic human needs are met.

Above all, we must replace a profit-driven healthcare system with an alternative system built on the premise that health care is a fundamental human right, something to which every person is entitled by reason of his or her humanity regardless of income and social status.

To bring about the change we need requires concerted action from all of us, beginning with the simple task of contacting our congressional representatives and asking them to support such policies as the “moral agenda” proposed by the Poor People’s Campaign.

Anthology: In the Buddha's Words (Ven. Bodhi)
The Buddha said that the truly great person lives for his or her own welfare, for the welfare of others, and for the welfare of the whole world.

This is one of those special times when we are being given the chance to meet this call to greatness, when we are being asked to act for the welfare of the world.

The Numerical Discourses
To act in such a way, we do not have to perform extraordinary deeds of self-sacrifice or unparalleled feats of creative innovation; we don’t have to be the ones who discover a vaccine for the coronavirus.

The requirement, rather, is very simple: to adhere faithfully to the guidelines of social responsibility and to heed the call of social justice. By acting responsibly, even with our own best interest as our motivation, we will be putting compassion into action.

We’ll be promoting the good of our loved ones, neighbors, community and nation, and ultimately the good of the world. More

Bhikkhu Bodhi (Jeffrey Block) is the famous American author of many English translations.

Intro to Dzogchen course: B. Alan Wallace

B. Alan Wallace (wisdomexperience.org); Ashley Wells, Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
Padmasambhava Bodhisattva
This online course, led by B. Alan Wallace, be introduced to the view, meditation, and way of life of Dzogchen -- the “Great Perfection” tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.

Wallace goes through a remarkable text by 19th century Master Düdjom Lingpa, The Foolish Dharma of an Idiot Clothed in Mud and Feathers, and guides the class in meditations that help participants begin to discover the Great Perfection for themselves.

Additional selected readings, quizzes, and the opportunity to discuss this material with an international community of learners augments understanding and helps integrate this profound path into daily life.

What We’ll Learn
  • Practices that lead directly to the heart of Dzogchen
  • Special meditation techniques to develop relaxation, stillness, and clarity
  • How to observe thoughts and emotions without getting caught up in them
  • An overview of the world of the Great Perfection, as told by the great master (Düdjom Lingpa).
About the Course
Dzogchen (“Great Perfection”) is regarded by many to be the pinnacle of the Buddhist teachings, as it presents the most direct path to realizing our true nature and to unveiling the deepest dimensions of consciousness.

About the Teacher

Dynamic lecturer, progressive scholar, and one of the most prolific writers and translators of Tibetan Buddhism in the West, Dr. B. Alan Wallace, PhD continually seeks innovative ways to integrate Buddhist contemplative practices with Western science to advance the study of the mind.

Dr. Wallace, a scholar and practitioner of Buddhism since 1970, has taught Buddhist theory and meditation worldwide since 1976. Having devoted 14 years to training as a Tibetan Buddhist monk, ordained by H. H. the Dalai Lama, he went on to earn an undergraduate degree in physics and the philosophy of science at Amherst College and a doctorate in religious studies at Stanford U.

He later studied Dzogchen with Gyatrul Rinpoche, a senior teacher in the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism. With his unique background, Dr. Wallace brings deep experience and applied skills to the challenge of integrating traditional Indo-Tibetan Buddhism with the modern world.

B. Alan Wallace is the author and translator of several books, including Düdjom Lingpa’s Visions of the Great Perfection, Stilling the Mind: Shamatha Teachings From Dudjom Linpa’s Vajra EssenceTibetan Buddhism from the Ground Up, Natural Liberation: Padmasambhava’s Teachings on the Six Bardos, and The Attention Revolution. More + VIDEO

The U.S. is at WAR with Yemen (audio)

Scott Horton (Pacifica Radio LA, archive.KPFK.org, aired Sunday, 3/27/20, 8:30 am) with guest Hassan El-Tayyab (justforeignpolicy.org); Pfc. Sandoval, Seth Auberon, CC Liu (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

The dire situation in Yemen created by the US leading from behind with Saudis (The Hill)

Listen free go to archive.kpfk.org, choose Antiwar Radio, select Sunday, March 29, 8:30 am
.
America’s ongoing genocide in Yemen
(SHS) Scott Horton (antiwar.com) says, "This is the most important story in the world," but there's an almost "total media blackout" on it.

He talks to peace activist and musician Hassan El-Tayyab (lead lobbyist for the Friends Committee on National Legislation's Middle East Policy and Affairs Division, justforeignpolicy.org) about the dire humanitarian situation in Yemen.
The U.S. continues to lead Saudi Arabia in waging an aggressive war against the Middle East’s poorest country, Yemen.

Horton reminds us that U.S. Pres. Trump could end this war with a single phone call. But Trump is too concerned with arms contracts with the Saudi government to risk jeopardizing the relationship.

Things are already desperate for the Yemeni people, who have a hard time securing food, medicine, and clean water. These humanitarian problems have led to the world’s worst outbreaks of cholera, a disease treated with basic sanitation and nutrition.

It would be an utter disaster if the coronavirus spreads to Yemen on top of the problems they are being made to face by the U.S. military. Points discussed on the show:
This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: NoDev NoOps NoIT, by Hussein Badakhchani; The War State by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.com; Tom Woods’ Liberty Classroom; ExpandDesigns.com/Scott; Listen and Think Audio; TheBumperSticker.com; and LibertyStickers.com.

Stealth War: How China took over (video)



China's silent take over
Stealth War (Gen. Spalding)
The host talks about China's "stealth war" with retired U.S. Air Force General Spalding, author of Stealth War: How China Took Over While America's Elite Slept. Brigadier Gen. Robert S. Spalding III assumed the duties of chief deputy directorate for China, Mongolia, Taiwan and retired after 25 years of service.

Contact Host Patrick Bet-David by text (310) 340-1132, tweet (twitter.com), or email (info@valuetainment.com).

Thursday, April 2, 2020

"The Path of Insight Meditation" (pocket guide)

Jack Kornfield, Joseph Goldstein (amazon); Dhr. Seven, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
Spirit Rock's Jack Kornfield (InsightLA.org)
The Path of Insight Meditation is an introductory guide to vipassana or Buddhist insight meditation.

It offers spiritual exercises from two American master teachers -- Jack Kornfield and Joseph Goldstein.

It looks into how this practice leads to compassion and a deeper understanding of "self."

Insight Meditation, Los Angeles (insightLA.org)
Insight meditation is a Buddhist practice that opens the way to profound awakening in our daily lives.

This introductory guide offers wisdom about how this path cultivates compassion, strengthens mindfulness, and leads to a deeper understanding of ourselves and others.

It also includes exercises from these two master teachers, developed from their meditation retreats taught around the world. Goldstein and Kornfield are the founders of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts, and each has authored many books on Buddhist meditation. More

USAF Gen Spalding: Threat of 5G (video)



The Threat of 5G
Stealth War (Brig. Gen. Robert S. Spalding)
"Siri?" "Alexa?" "Huawei?" "How may I spy on serve you?"

U.S. Air Force General Spalding talks about the serious threat of 5G with Patrick Bet-David. His book is Stealth War: How China Took Over While America's Elite Slept (amazon.com).

U.S. Air Force (retired) Brigadier General Robert S. Spalding III (ETNAM) assumed the duties of special assistant to the U.S. Air Force vice chief of staff in February 2018. He was the chief deputy directorate for China, Mongolia, and Taiwan Division, who retired after 25 years of service.

Share your thoughts with Patrick Bet-David by texting (310) 340-1132 or send a tweet (twitter.com/patrickbetdavid). Subscribe to Valuetainment for all new updates. To reach the Valuetainment team, email: info@valuetainment.com.

Corona is ALMOST everywhere. Why? (video)

Tom O'Connor @ShaolinTom; Dr. Cowan, MD; Pfc. Sandoval, S.Auberon, Wisdom Quarterly

Here's the latest COVID-19 coronavirus map by @Newsweek @StatistaCharts @JohnsHopkins. Confirmed cases top 960,000 with nearly 50,000 dead, over 200,000 recovering. USA is #1 in sickness. Spain may pass Italy for the #2 spot behind the US. And businessman Trump says Russia and Saudi Arabia will deal [i.e., collude to drive the price up] to make the oil business wildly profitable again. China denies underreporting coronavirus morbidity and death rates.

Lee Camp "Redacted Tonight" VIP (video)

Lee Camp Redacted Tonight VIP (RT); Seth Auberon, Pfc. Sandoval (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly



[202] Presidential candidate Howie Hawkins on how to deal with this crisis
The rich are prepared to let millions of US citizens die in order to safeguard the economy against the coronavirus crisis. The US renews its demonization of Venezuelan Pres. Nicolas Maduro.
Green Party presidential candidate Howie Hawkins sits down with Camp to discuss the shortcomings of the Bernie Sanders campaign, the Green Party's electoral strategy, and how Hawkins would react to the nation's problems were he to win in 2020.

Naomi Karavani finishes off the show with a look back at the last major pandemic to hit the US: the "Spanish Flu," which did not originate in Spain but was reported by the Spanish press and got dubbed for writing about it during a time of war and rumors of war.

Lee Camp's videos are heavily suppressed by YouTube and Facebook. So to help us avoid this censorship, share it as you see fit, and join Camp's email list by texting "REDACTED" to 33-777. It's free and quick. Or join at LeeCamp.com. Come be in the live audience! It tapes every Thursday at 8:45 pm in Washington, DC (details at leecamp.com/RSVP), radical political comedy not found anywhere else. Cool Redacted Tonight swag that can't be bought anywhere else.

Heaven's Gate and Glass Skywalk (video)

Because We Camp, Nov. 18, 2014; CC Liu, Ashley Wells (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


The Tianmen Mountains, Heaven's Gate and Glass Skywalk 天门山
Like what Because We Camp does? Donate-to-the-camps. Heaven's Gate is the reason we traveled to Zhangjiajie, Hunan Province, China. It was once desktop wallpaper, so we had to see it for ourselves. And it did not disappoint. Tianmenshan Mountain Park has a 4,700 foot high Glass Sky Walk. The world's longest cable car takes us up in a gondola, the 99 bend road, and Heaven's Gate itself is a favorite destination. With so much extreme man-made and natural engineering, it's no wonder that it's a Redbull Wonderland, a favorite of Wingsuiters. Wingsuit competitions are held here. They fly through the hole that is Heaven's Gate. And if they miss, they get to heaven very quickly. There's a lot of GoPro footage to check out online!

FOLLOW THE BEARD
✩ Blog/Website: becausewecamp.com

MUSIC ♪
"Years & Years - You & I" (Akouo Rework), SoundCloud: soundcloud.com/akouo

"Sneaky Snitch" Kevin MacLeod, Website: incompetech.com

"Chick-a-Boom" (Danny Massure edit), SoundCloud: soundcloud.com/danny-massure

Thanks for watching The Tianmen Mountains, Heaven's Gate, and Glass Skywalk 天门山. Watch "Exploring an abandoned part of Zhangjiajie National Park in China"

The riots to come in Italy and USA (video)

Jimmy Dore (jimmydorecomedy.com); Pfc. Sandoval, Seth Auberon, Wisdom Quarterly

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

God, Jerry was right: JESUS SAVES (video)

Slayer; Seinfeld; South Park; April 1 2020, Sheldon, Seth, Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly


What if "salvation" had nothing to do with our own karma (intentional actions) and understanding? What if were just the whim of some guy, some creator god, in a big simulation? Is life a test as a Big Bang Being looks down from some extraterrestrial home?

If it were then we'd have to worry, "Did I pick the right denomination?" like South Park points out:



We choose to follow the religion we think is best, but we don't choose which one to believe. That's dictated to us by relatives and society. Why think for myself? Even though others choose for me, it's incumbent on me to question and understand that religion, rather than just taking it for granted.

All religions have something good, and all religions have real problems to be aware of so we don't get sucked in. It's a fact of life:

You take the good, you take the bad, you take it all, and there you have...no salvation at all.

The Buddha awakened in the world. So it doesn't need to be any way other than it is for us to awaken. He pointed out the path he followed to emancipation, liberation, salvation, freedom from all suffering:

Salvation depends on what we do and think and understand. Otherwise, the teachings of religion can be twisted by others to mean what it never meant, things others tell us to control us and mislead us. Who saves? Who could save? We ourselves have to use our heart, our head, and our purified-intuition that is able to directly know.

“No one saves us but ourselves.
No one will, and no one may.
We ourselves must walk the Path.
Buddhas only point the way!"
(The Dhammapada Verses 165, 276)

(April 2 update) April Fools. Does Jesus save? In a sense, if he shops at Walmart and Geico or listens to Slayer, but actually it's not a joke. True believers should know, as Christian scholar Reza Aslan takes pains to document in Zealot, there are two Christian figureheads, Jesus of Nazareth the historical figure, son of man (manusya-putra) and would-be messiah versus "Jesus Christ," son of Zeus, son of god (deva-putra) the Nordic Nazi "Aryan-ideal" lord of astrotheological the West's conception. They are very different persons. Jesus of Nazareth spent his "lost" 18 years in India as a yogi, Buddhist monk at Hemis Gompa, Ladakh/Tibet, who studied Eastern philosophy with various Dharmic religions, as documented by Nicolas Notovitch, Kirsten Holger, Swami Abedananda, and others.

The 8-Part Full Moon Observance (sutra)

Bhikkhu Khantipalo (trans.), Visakhuposatha Sutra: "Discourse to Visakha on the Lunar Observance with the Eight Practices" (AN 8.43, PTS: A iv 255); Dhr. Seven, Ellie Askew (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
April's full moon has many names: "Awakening Moon," "Pink," "Seed," "Sprouting Grass," "Pascal," "Egg" (c.f. "Goose-Egg" in Beard 1918), "Fish," "Frog," "Spring," and "Sap" (Farmers' Almanac).
.
Virtue/merit (good karma) is the way to happiness.
Thus have I heard. At one time the Exalted One [the Buddha] was staying near Savatthi at the Eastern monastery in the mansion (given by) Migara's mother.

Then Visakha [Note 1], Migara's mother, approached the Exalted One, bowed, and sat respectfully in a suitable place [to one side]. When she was seated the Exalted One said:

"Visakha, when the lunar observance (uposatha) undertaken with its eight component practices [2] is entered on, it is of great (karmic) fruit, of great advantage, of great splendor, of great range.

"Visakha, how is the lunar observance undertaken with its eight component practices that, entered on, is of great fruit, great advantage, great splendor, and great range?
"Herein [3], Visakha, a noble disciple considers:

"'For all their lives enlightened disciples (arhats) dwell having abandoned taking the lives of living beings, refrain from killing living beings, they have laid down their cudgels, laid down their weapons.

The golden hued Buddha taught Visakha.
"'Instead, they are conscientious [4], sympathetic, full of compassion for the good of all living beings. So today I dwell, for this whole night and day, having abandoned taking the lives of living beings, refraining from killing living beings.

"'I am one who has laid down my cudgel, laid down my weapon. I am conscientious, sympathetic, full of compassion for the good of all living beings. By this practice, following after the enlightened, the lunar observance will be entered on by me.'

"It is undertaken by this first practice.

"[One further considers:] 'For all their lives the enlightened disciples dwell having abandoned taking what is not given, refrain from taking what is not given.

"'Instead, they are takers [only] of what is given, those who expect only what is given, themselves become clean without thievery. So today I dwell, for this night and day, having abandoned taking what is not given, refraining from taking what is not given. I am a taker [only] of what is given, one who expects only what is given, and by myself become clean without thieving. By this practice, following after the enlightened, the lunar observance will be entered on by me.'

"It is undertaken by this second practice.

"[One further considers:] 'For all their lives the enlightened dwell having abandoned erotic (unchaste) conduct. 

"'Instead, they are of chaste conduct, living reserved, refraining from sex which is the way of common society. So today I dwell, for this night and day, having abandoned unchaste conduct.

"'Instead, I am of chaste conduct, living reserved, refraining from sex which is the common way of society. By this practice, following after the enlightened, the lunar observance will be entered on by me.'

"It is undertaken by this third practice. ….

What is the result?
Countless worlds in 31 Planes of Existence
"Visakha, thus indeed is the lunar observance entered on and undertaken with its eight component practices, of great fruit, of great advantage, of great splendor, of great range.

"How great a fruit? How great an advantage? How great a splendor? How great a range?

"Visakha, it is just as though one might have power, dominion, and rulership [11] over 16 great countries abounding in the Seven Treasures [12] — that is to say, Anga, Magadha, Kasi, Kosala, Vajji, Malla, Ceti, Vansa, Kure, Pancala, Maccha, Surasena, Assaka, Avanti, Gandhara, and Kamboja. Yet it is not worth a 16th part of the lunar observance undertaken with its eight practices.

For what reason? Miserable is rulership over humans compared with celestial (heavenly) bliss.

"Visakha, that which among humans is 50 years is one night and day of the shining ones (devas) of the Four Great Kings, their month has 30 of those days, their year twelve of those months. The lifespan of the shining ones of the Four Great Kings is 500 [figuratively "a large number"] of those heavenly years.

"Now here a certain woman or man, having entered on the lunar observance, undertaken with its eight practices, at the breakup of the body, after death, may arise to fellowship with those shining ones of the Four Great Kings. Such a thing indeed is known, Visakha.

"It was in connection with this that I said: Miserable is rulership over humans compared with heavenly bliss. …

Full moon, Supermoon, Minneapolis (Wiki)
"Visakha, that which among humans is 1,600 years is one night and day of the shining ones with sway over others' creations (paranimmitavasavatti devas), their month has 30 of those days, their year 12 of those months.  The lifespan of those shining ones is 16,000 of those heavenly years.

"Now here a certain woman or man, having entered on the lunar observance undertaken with the eight practices, at the breakup of the body, after death, may arise to fellowship with the these being. Such a thing indeed is known, Visakha.

"It was in connection with this that I said: Miserable is rulership over humans compared with heavenly bliss.

"Take no life,
nor take what is not given,
speak no lie,
nor be a drinker of toxic drinks,
refrain from sex and unchaste conduct,
at not at night or out-of-time food,
neither wear garlands
nor indulge with perfume,
and make your bed a mat upon the ground:
This indeed is called the
eight-part lunar observance
taught by the Buddha
gone to disappointment's end.

The radiance of the sun and moon,
both beautiful to see,
follow on from each other,
dispelling the darkness
as they go through the heavens,
illumining the sky
and brightening the quarters
and the treasure found between them:
pearls and crystals
and auspicious turquoises,
gold nuggets and the gold called ore,
monetary gold 
with gold dust carried down —
compared with the eight-part
lunar observance,
though they are enjoyed,
are not a 16th part —
as the shining of the moon
in all the groups of stars.

Hence indeed the woman and the man
who are virtuous
enter on lunar observance
having eight parts
and having made merits [14]
bringing forth happiness
blameless they obtain heavenly abodes."
— PTS iv. pp.255-258

[The devotee Vasettha, when he heard this discourse, after the Buddha had finished speaking the above verses, exclaimed:]

"Venerable sir, if my dear kin and relatives were to enter on the lunar observance undertaken with its eight practices, it would be for their benefit and happiness for many a day.

"Venerable sir, if all the warrior-nobles, Brahmins, merchants, and laborers [the four castes] were to enter on the lunar observance undertaken with its eight practices, it would be for their benefit and happiness for many a day."

[The Buddha replied:] "So it is, Vasettha. If all the warrior-nobles, Brahmins, merchants, and laborers were to enter on the lunar observance undertaken with its eight practices, it would be for their benefit and happiness for many a day.

"If this world with its shining ones, destroyers, creators (devas, maras, and brahmas), this generation [of humans] with its shamans and Brahmins [wandering ascetics and temple priests], together with its rulers and humankind were to enter on the lunar observance undertaken with its eight practices, it would be for their benefit and happiness for many a day.

"Vasettha, if these great sal trees were to enter on the lunar observance undertaken with its eight practices, it would be for their benefit and happiness for many a day, that is to say, if they were [like humans]. What to say of humans!" — [PTS iv. p.259] More
NOTES
1. Visakha: a very generous female lay disciple who, by listening frequently to the Dharma, became a stream-winner (first stage of enlightenment) and who was, perhaps, already a noble disciple (ariya) when this discourse was spoken.
2. Anga: literally, limb; part, component, practice; here meaning practices composing the uposatha or "lunar observance."
3. "Herein": meaning "in the dispensation of the Buddha or Buddha-sasana," the Buddha's instructions or teachings.
4. Lajji: one who has shame or scruples (hiri) about doing harm, and aversion or fear of wrongdoing (ottappa), the two qualities which are called "the world guardians."
5. Saccasandha: "They join the truth" (Commentary).
6. Theta: literally, "firm, established," that is, in the experience of ultimate truth.
7. Paccayika: truth that has been seen by perceiving its conditional arising.
8. Buddhist monastics do not eat from midday until the following dawn.
9. "High beds" refers to beds that are soft and luxurious.
10. Large beds means those in which two people can sleep.
11. Rajjam: lit., "kingship," but meaning generally great authority.
12. The Seven Treasures: gold, silver, pearl, crystal, turquoise, diamond, and coral.
13. If calculated in human years, the devas or shining ones of the Four Great Kings live 9,000,000 years; shining ones of the World of the Thirty-Three 36,000,000 years; of the Yama 144,000,000 years; of the Tusita 576,000,000 years; of the Nimmanarati 2,304,000,000 years; of the Paranimminitavasavatti devas the life is 9,216,000,000 years. Humans can live at most one day in the life of the devas of the World of the Thirty-Three. It is worth reading the story in the Dhammapada Commentary (Buddhist Legends, Harvard Oriental Series, Vol. 29, reissued by the Pali Text Society, London, 1969), called "Husband-Honorer," which brings to life this comparative time scale.
14. Merit (puñña): good karma, which purifies and cleanses the mind/heart of the doer, such as the practice of the three ways of merit-making: giving, moral conduct (keeping precepts), and meditation.
  • See AN 3.70, AN 10.46, Ud 2.10, "Uposatha Observance Days"