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Posts tagged “Pali texts

Is there commentary in the suttas?

Email to Ven Sujāto:

On Jun 21, 2012 5:24 PM, “Dhammadarsa” <dhammadaso@live.com.au> wrote:

Ven Sir

I hope this email finds you in good health and peace of mind.

I have, for a while now, thought that the divisions of sutta and veyyaakara.na were the early divisions of  concise words of the Buddha and commentary/detailed explanation mostly by diciples. In this light it is interesting to read two consecutive sentences from the Dhammacakkappavattana-sutta:

Attamanaa pañcavaggiyaa bhikkhuu bhagavato bhaasitang abhinandunti. [Normal end of suttas.]

Imasmiñca pana veyyaakara.nasming bhaññamaane aayasmato ko.n.daññassa virajang viitamalang dhammacakkhung udapaadi–

“yang kiñci samudayadhammang, sabbang tang nirodhadhamman”ti.

So is the Dhammcakka…sutta or veyyaakara.na, or a mixture of both? As we know from the Vinaya details, Kondanya realised first, then after more instruction, Vappa and Bhaddiya. Then the six lived on the alms food those three realised people had brought back. So the Buddha stayed teaching and did not go on alms round and the remaining two Mahanama and Assaji took at least one more day. For a while I thought they all took turns to go on alms food, but the Vinaya passage shows the realised ones supported the Buddha and others, so they could focus on realisation.

[BD Vol IV pg 9]:

Then the Lord, eating the food brought back by these, 3 exhorted, instructed those remaining monks with dhamma-talk, saying : ” Let the group of six 4 live on whatever the three monks 3 bring when they have walked for almsfood.” 1135 II

Then while they were being exhorted, instructed by the Lord with dhamma-talk, dhamma-vision, dustless, stainless, arose to the venerable Mahandma 5 and to the venerable Assaji,6 that “whatever is of the nature to uprise, all that is of the nature to stop.” II 36 11

How compassionate! But how I think this relates is, that the Dhammacakka…sutta could be a compilation of sutta and veyyakara.na to cover what happened over the at least two days. Could it be that the talk on the extremes was enough for Kondanya to realise the Dhammacakkhu?

 

Kind Regards

Dhammadāsa Bhikkhu

 

Reply:

On 27/06/2012 6:58 PM, Sujato Bhikkhu wrote:

Dear ven

That’s a great idea. I’d noticed the mention of veyyākarana in the Dhammacakka, but hadn’t thought to connect that with the extended teaching over a few days. Perhaps this idea could be investigated further in light of your analysis of the 17 versions…

Metta

Bhante Sujato

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