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THE PATH OF PURITY
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TRANSLATION SERIES, No. 11
A TRANSLATION OF
PE MAUNG TIN
TRANSLATOR OF THE " ATTHASALINI "
OF VIRTUE (OR MORALS)
PUBLISHED FOR THE PALI TEXT SOCIETY
THE OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS, AMEN CORNER, E.C.
NEW YORK, TORONTO, MELBOURNE, AND BOMBAY
PniNTEU IN GREAT BRITAIN.
THE present volume is a translation of the first part of
Buddhaghosa's Visuddhimagga, the famous treatise which was,
as is believed, written in Ceylon in the beginning of the fifth
century A.D. Professor Lanman of Harvard University
published an admirable analysis of this first part in the
American Academy of Arts and Sciences, vol. xlix, No. 3,
August, 1913. Since then ten years have passed by without
our seeing the long-hoped-for American edition of the text or
its translation. The Pali Text Society, which all along felt
the need of a European edition of this work, could wait no
longer, and recently brought out their own edition of the text.
So, on the assurance of the editor, Mrs. Rhys Davids, that she
saw no prospect of an American translation, I submitted my
translation to the Pali Text Society. As has been explained
in the Editorial Note to my translation of the Atthasalim,
if I had not entertained from year to year good hopes of
seeing Professor Lanman's edition and translation, I would
have taken up, six years ago, the translation of the
Visuddhimagga instead of the Atthasalim.
In the Afterword to her scholarly edition of the
Visuddhimagga, Mrs. Rhys Davids has said what she had to
say about the book and its author. I especially appreciate
her useful list of quotations in the book from canonical and
other works. I will here touch upon just one point. The
Visuddhimagga makes reference (see Index) to the Commen-
taries on the Anguttara, Majjhima, and Samyutta. To
those unacquainted with the history of the Commentaries it
would thus seem that the Visuddhimagga was written later
than these Commentaries. But, on the other hand, it is
quoted by just these Commentaries on the Nikayas as well as
by the Samantapasadika and Atthasalim, and is therefore
earlier than these works. For instance, the Majjhima Com-
mentary, which is being edited for the Pali Text Society by
Professor James H. Woods, refers to it by name. When,
therefore, the Visuddhimagga in its turn refers to the Majjhima
Commentary by name, the explanation may well be that the
reference is not to the Majjhima Commentary as it has been
written by Buddhaghosa, but to the original Ceylonese Com-
mentary from which he later made his redaction. In the
Sumangalavilasirii also (i, 87), which is Buddhaghosa's
Commentary on the Digha Nikaya, he refers to the Digha
Commentary that is, to the original Ceylonese Commentary
he was recasting, or at least consulting. The same may be
said of the other references in the Visuddhimagga to the Com-
mentaries on the Anguttara and Samyutta. And we know
that there were these original Ceylonese Commentaries and
also the ' Poranas ' on which Buddhaghosa based his writings.
This explanation may account for the close similarity, which,
as M. Nagai has pointed out in the Journal of the Pali Text
Society, 1917-19, exists between the Visuddhimagga and the
Vimuttimagga, a work by another writer. I would not,
however, go to the extent of saying, as does M. Nagai, that these
two works ' are one and the same work appearing in different
attire.' Considering that the doctrines, called the Buddha's
Word, have been preserved through the centuries by a line of
teachers, whose aim is consistency in doctrinal interpretation
rather than originality in striking out new paths, we may
regard the Visuddhimagga and the Vimuttimagga as more
or less independent works, written by men who belonged to
the same school of thought namely, the orthodox school at
Anuradhapura. Final decision, however, should be postponed
until we know more of Buddhaghosa's writings and the works
to which he refers.
I have consulted with benefit the Burmese translation
(Rangoon, 1914) by Pyi Sayadaw. And in the footnotes I
have made occasional quotations from such works on the
Visuddhimagga as the Mahatikd by Dhammapala of Ceylon
and the Ganthi by Saddhammajotipala of Burma. My
thanks are due to Bhikkhu Sllacara, who was kind enough
to go over my first draft translation of Chapter I; and to
Mrs. Rhys Davids for her kind help in reading the proofs
and for the keen interest she has taken in the translation.
EXETEK COLLEGE, OXTOKD, PE
December 10, 1922.
INTRODUCTORY DISCOURSE -
I. EXPOSITION OP VIRTUE
1. WHAT IS VIRTUE ? -
2. IN WHAT SENSE IS IT VIRTUE ?
3. WHAT ARE ITS CHARACTERISTICS,
ESSENCE, ITS MANIFESTATION, ITS
PROXIMATE CAUSE ? 10
4. WHAT ARE ITS ADVANTAGES ? - 11
5. HOW MANY KINDS OF IT ARE THERE ? 12
6. WHAT IS ITS CORRUPTION ? - 57
7. WHAT ITS PURIFICATION ? - 57
II. EXPOSITION OF THE ASCETIC PRACTICES - 66-95
GENERAL DISCOURSE 66
1. THE REFUSE-RAGMAN'S PRACTICE - - 70
2. THE THREE-ROBER'S PRACTICE - 73
3. THE ALMSMAN'S PRACTICE - - 74
4. THE HOUSE-TO-HOUSE-GOER'S PRACTICE - 76
5. THE ONE-SESSIONER'S PRACTICE - - 78
6. THE BOWL-FOODER'S PRACTICE - 79
7. THE AFTERFOOD-REFUSER'S PRACTICE - 81
8. THE FORESTER'S PRACTICE - - 81
9. THE TREE-ROOTMAN'S PRACTICE - 84
10. THE OPEN-SPACER'S PRACTICE - 86
11. THE BURNING-GROUNDER'S PRACTICE - 87
12. THE ANY-BEDDER'S PRACTICE - 89
13. THE SITTING-MAN'S PRACTICE - 90
OF ASCETIC AND OTHER TERMS AS MORAL TRIAD 91
OF ASCETIC AND OTHER TERMS AS DIFFERENTIATED 92
IN GROUPS AND IN DETAIL - - - 93
THE PATH OF PURITY
Honour be to Him, the Blessed, the Saint, the
" The man discreet, on virtue planted firm,
In intellect and intuition trained ;
The brother ardent and discriminant :
'Tis he may from this tangle disembroil." 1
Thus it was spoken. And why was it thus spoken?
It is said that to the Blessed One then staying at Savatthi
there came one night a certain deva who, in order to have his
doubt removed, asked this question :
" Tangle within, without, lo! in the toils
Entangled is the race of sentient things.
Hence would I ask thee, Gotama, of this :
Who is't can from this tangle disembroil ?" 1
And this briefly is the meaning. By '' tangle " is meant
the net of craving. For craving is like the tangle of the
network of branches of bamboo-bushes and the like, in the
sense of an intertwisting, because it arises below and above
repeatedly in connection with such objects as visible things.
And it is said to be " Tangle within, without," from the fact
of its arising within one's own and others' individualities
and what thereto appertains, in the organs subjective and
objective. Mankind is entangled in such a tangle. Just as
bamboos and the like are entangled by such tangles as bamboo-
bushes, 2 so all mankind, known as the various classes of
Kindred Sayings 1, 20. - Read velugunibajatadlhi.
2 The Path of Purity
sentient beings, are entangled, enmeshed, embroiled, in that
tangle of craving this is the meaning.  And because of
such entanglement, the meaning of, " Hence would I ask thee,
Gotama, of this," is to be understood thus: Therefore I ask
thee, addressing the Blessed One by his family name, Gotama.
"Who is't can from this tangle disembroil?" means: Who is
able to disentangle this tangle which has thus entangled the
Three Elements? 1
Thus questioned, the Blessed One, walking in unobstructed
knowledge of all things, the Deva of devas, the Sakka of
Sakkas, the Brahma of Brahmas, confident with the Four
Confidences, bearer of the Tenfold Strength, endowed with
unimpeded knowledge and the all-seeing eye, spake this
stanza in answer :
" The man discreet, on virtue planted firm,
In intellect and intuition trained;
The brother ardent and discriminant :
'Tis he may from this tangle disembroil."
In setting forth, according to the truth,
The meaning of the stanza of the Sage,
Which treats of virtue and such other things,
I will expound the Path of Purity,
Which rests on the strict rules of the devout
Dwellers at the Great Minster, and contains
Purest decisions, gladdening even those
Who never may attain to purity
For all their striving, though they seek it here,
Not knowing aright the Path of Purity,
Which holds all virtue, and is straight and safe,
Though they to ordination have attained,
Hard to attain in the Great Conqueror's realm.
Devout men, whose desire is purity,
Attend ye to the things that I relate.
Here, by " Purity " is meant Nibbana, which is free from
all taints and exceedingly pure. The way to this purity is
1 Or threefold conditions, viz. the world of sense, the world of form,
and the world of the formless.
Introductory Discourse 3
the '' Path of Purity." The means of its acquisition is called
the " Path." I am going to speak of that Path of Purity,
is the meaning. This Path of Purity has been set forth in
terms of simple insight in some places thus :
" All things conditioned are impermanent ;
The which who understandeth, holdeth III
In scorn. This is the path of purity; ' 31
 in terms of Jhana-insight in other places thus :
" He from Nibbdna is not far in whom
Appear Jhana and insight; " 2
in terms of kamma and so forth in some places thus :
" Good will, and wisdom, mind by method trained,
The highest conduct on good morals based:
This maketh mortals pure, not rank nor wealth ; " 3
in terms of virtue and the like in other places thus :
" He that in virtuous habit never fails,
Hath insight, can to mystic rapture win,
Who stirs up effort, puts forth all his strength,
'Tis he can cross the flood so hard to pass ; " 4
in terms of the application of mindfulness and so forth in
some places thus: "This single way, this path, brethren,
is for the purification of beings ... for the realization of
Nibbana, to wit: the Four Applications of Mindfulness." 5
And the same with the Supreme Efforts and so forth.
But here in the Blessed One's reply it has been set forth in
terms of virtue and so forth.
Thereon (i.e., on the Blessed One's stanza) this is the
brief comment :
" On virtue planted firm," means, being established in
virtue. And here in this phrase one who is even now engaged
in fulfilling virtue is said to be established in virtue. Hence
the meaning here is, being established in virtue by fulfilling
1 Dhammapada 277. 2 2b. 372.
3 Kindred Sayings I, 46. * Ib. 76.
6 Dlgha Nikaya ii, 290; Dialogues of the Buddha ii, 327.
4 The Path of Purity
it. "The man" means, the sentient being. "Discreet"
means, wise by means of wisdom born of kamma associated
with conception (in the womb) attended by the Three
Root-conditions. 1 " In intellect and intuition trained," means
cultivating concentration and insight; for here concentration
is set forth under the head of intellect (or mind), and insight
under the name of intuition (or wisdom). " Ardent " means
energetic; for energy is called ardour in the sense of causing
the corruptions to be completely burnt up. He who possesses
it is ardent. In '' discriminant," wisdom is called discrimina-
tion. Endowed therewith, is the meaning. By this word
" discriminant " is indicated preserving wisdom.
In this answer wisdom comes three times. First there is
mother-wit, second there is insight-wisdom, and third there
is preserving wisdom, maintaining all functions. 2 He sees
clanger in the stream of existence this is " the brother "
(bhikkhu). " 'Tis he may from this tangle disembroil "
means:  Just as a man standing on the ground may lift
up a well-sharpened sword and clear away (disentangle) a
big bamboo-bush, so may the brother endowed with the six
states, to wit: this virtue and this concentration set forth
under the heading of mind, and this threefold wisdom, and
this ardour, and standing on the ground of virtue, lift up, by
means of the hand of preserving wisdom supported by the
strength of energy, the sword of insight- wisdom well sharpened
on the stone of concentration, and clear away, cleave that
entire tangle of craving which keeps falling into the continuity
of his own aggregates. And indeed he clears that tangle
at the moment of his attainment of the Path. At the moment
of Fruition he, having cleared the tangle, is worthy of the best
gifts in heaven and earth. Hence has the Blessed One said :
" The man discreet, on virtue planted firm,
In intellect and intuition trained;
The brother ardent and discriminant :
'Tis he may from this tangle disembroil."
1 Viz. The absence of greed, of hate, of delusion.
- Such as acquiring the subjects of meditation, making frequent
questionings and being strenuous in culture.
Introductory Discourse 5
What is meant therein is, that there remains nothing for
" the man " to do in regard to that wisdom by means of
which he is said to be " discreet," for his wisdom has been
made perfect in virtue of kamma done in a previous existence.
And in " ardent and discriminant " it is meant that he is to
be persevering by means of the said energy, and compre-
hending by means of wisdom; and establishing himself in
virtue, cultivate calm and insight indicated by way of
intellect (or mind) and intuition (or wisdom). Here, thus,
the Blessed One has set forth this Path of Purity under the
heads of virtue, concentration, and wisdom.
Indeed, thus far have been set forth the threefold training,
the religion happy in its three stages, 1 the sufficing condition
of the threefold knowledge 2 and so forth, the avoidance of the
two extremes and the practice of the middle course, the means
of escaping states of woe and so forth, the rejection of the
corruptions in three ways, the opposition to transgression and
so forth, the cleansing from the three corruptions, and the
instrumentality necessary to Stream-winning and so forth.
How so ? Here by virtue is indicated the training in the
higher virtue; by concentration, the training in the higher
thought; and by wisdom, the training in the higher wisdom.
And by virtue is indicated the happiness of the religion in
its beginning. For, from such expressions as: " What is the
beginning of moral states ? The virtue of great purity," 3 and
" the refraining from all evil," 4 it is evident that virtue is the
beginning of the religion. And since it bears such merit as
absence of remorse, it is happy.
By concentration is indicated the happiness of the religion
in its progress.  For, from such expressions as: " tJie
fulfilment of morality," 4 and so on, it is evident that concen-
tration is in the middle of the religion. And since it bears such
merit as the various kinds of supra-normal power, it is happy.
By wisdom is indicated the happiness of the religion in its
1 Its beginning, progress, and end.
2 Knowledge of former existences, the passing away and reappearing
of beings, and the destruction of the intoxicants.
3 Samyuttav, 143. * DJuimmapada 183.
6 The Path of Purity
consummation. For, from the expression, " the cleansing of
one's mind, . . . this is the religion of the Buddhas" 1 we see
the superiority of wisdom, and that it is the consummation of
the religion. And since it maintains its natural state un-
affected amid desirable and undesirable things, it is happy.
As it has been said :
"As wind a massy rock doth never move,
So neither praise nor dispraise moves the wise." 2
Similarly, in virtue is set forth the sufficing condition of
endowment with the Threefold Knowledge. For, depending
on the attainment of virtue one attains to the Threefold
Knowledge, and not to anything higher. In concentration is
set forth the sufficing condition of endowment with the Sixfold
Superknowledge. 3 For, depending on the fulfilment of con-
centration one attains to the Sixfold Superknowledge, and not
to anything higher. And in wisdom is set forth the sufficing
condition of the various kinds of analysis. For, depending
on the attainment of wisdom and on no other ground, one
attains to the Four Analyses. 4
By virtue also is indicated the avoiding of the extreme of
devotion to the pleasures of sensuality; by concentration the
avoiding of the extreme of self -mortification ; and by wisdom
the practising of the middle course.
Similarly in virtue is set forth the means of transcending the
states of woe; in concentration the means of transcending the
elements of sensuality; and in wisdom the means of transcend-
ing all existences.
Again, by virtue is set forth the rejection of the corruptions
by way of partial rejection; 5 by concentration, that by way of
1 Dhammapada 183. 2 Ib. 81.
3 Super-normal power of (1) manipulating the physical form,
(2) clairaudience far and near, (3) knowing others' thoughts,
(4) remembering former existences, (5) clairvoyance far and near,
(6) knowing how to bring the intoxicants to an end.
4 Analysis of things, causes, terms, and the knowing process.
6 Tadangappahdna : ' rejection by parts,' rejection of various parts
of immorality by various parts of morality, as darkness by the light of
a lamp. Translated as ' elimination of the factor in question ' in
Introductory Discourse 1
discarding; and by wisdom, that by way of extermina-
Again, by virtue is set forth opposition to actual deeds of
the corruptions; by concentration, opposition to their up-
rising; by wisdom, opposition to their latent tendency.
 Again, by virtue is set forth the cleansing of the cor-
ruption of misconduct; by concentration, cleansing of the
corruption of craving ; by wisdom, cleansing of the corruption
Again, by virtue is set forth the instrumentality for Stream-
winning and Once-returning; by concentration, that for
Never-returning; and by wisdom, that for Sanctity. For
the Stream-winner is said to be a fulfiller of virtue; likewise
the Once-returner. But the Never-returner is said to be a
fulfiller of concentration; and the Saint a fulfiller of wisdom.
Thus in so far are set forth these nine triads, to wit; the
Threefold Training, the religion happy in its three stages, the
sufficing condition of the Threefold Knowledge and so forth,
the avoidance of the two extremes and the practice of the
middle course, the means of transcending the states of woe
and so forth, the rejection of the corruptions in three ways,
the opposition to transgression and so forth, the cleansing of
the three corruptions, the instrumentality for Stream- winning
and so forth, and such other triads as those of merits.
This is the Introductory Discourse.
EXPOSITION OF VIRTUE
THUS this Path of Purity, albeit set forth under the heads
of virtue, concentration, and wisdom, including various
merits, has been expounded very briefly indeed. Conse-
quently it may not be sufficiently useful to all ; and so, in order
to make it known in detail, the following questions are asked,
beginning with the subject of virtue:
1. What is virtue ? x 2. In what sense is it virtue ?
3. What are its characteristics, its essence, its manifestation,
its proximate cause ? 4. What are its advantages ? 5. How
many kinds of virtue are there ? 6. What is its corruption ?
7. And what its purification ?
And these are the answers :
1. What is virtue?
Such states as the volition of one who abstains from life-
taking and so forth, or of one who fulfils his set duties. For,
this has been said in the Patisambhidamagga, 2 " What /.-
virtue? Volition is virtue; mental properties are virtue;
restraint  is virtue; non-transgression is virtue;" wherein
the volition which is virtue is that of one who abstains from
life-taking and so forth, or of one who fulfils' his set duties;
and the mental properties which are virtue are the abstinence
of one who abstains from life-taking and so forth. Further,
the volition which is virtue is that of the seven courses of
action of one who forsakes life-taking, and so on ; the mental
properties which are virtue are such states as non-covetous-
1 Sila is moral habit, habitual good conduct. Cf. Pss. of the Brethren,
p. 269, n. 2. It was the very essence of the Founder's gospel. For
his Order it became the basis of doctrine, and elaborated into what wo
understand bv virtue.
2 i, 44.
I. Exposition of Virtue 9
ness, goodwill, right views expressed in this manner: " Putting
away covetousness he lives by thought free from covetous-
ness." In " restraint is virtue," restraint should be under-
stood as fivefold: 1 by means of the Patimokkha, of mindful-
ness, of knowledge, of patience, of energy. Of these, " He is
endowed,fulfitted with this restraint according to thePatimokkha "' z
this is Patimokkha-restraint. " He keeps watch over the
controlling faculty of sight, attains to the restraint of the con-
trolling faculty of sight" 3 this is mindfulness-restraint.
" The currents flowing in the world Ajila,
Said the Exalted One, these may
By mindfulness be checked, this the restraint I teach,
By insight they may be shut iw." 4
this is knowledge-restraint in which (knowledge in) the
(right) use of the (four) requisites also is included. " One
endures cold and heat " 5 in such expressions it is patience-
restraint. " One does not consent to the uprisen lustful thought " (
in such expressions it is energy-restraint, in which purity
of livelihood also is included. Thus this Fivefold Restraint
as well as the restraint which noble youths dreading sin
exercise in regard to anything that falls in their way should
be understood as restraint- virtue. " Non-transgression is
virtue," means the absence of bodily and vocal transgression
in one practised in virtue. This so far is the answer to the
question, " What is virtue ?"
 Passing to the remaining questions :
2. In what sense is it virtue ?
It is virtue in the sense of being virtuous (or moral). And
what is this ? The being virtuous, is the right placing
together (of bodily and vocal actions). The meaning is that
because one is highly virtuous, one's bodily actions and so on
are not dissipated. Or it means, supporting. The being a
1 See also Expositor 454, where ' restraint by virtue ' is synonymous
-' Vibhanga 246. 3 Digtw, i, 70. * Sulla .V/>i/ 1035.
"' Majjhima i, 10. 6 Ib. 1 1.
10 The Path of Purity
support of moral states by way of establishment, is the
meaning. Indeed those who are skilful in the significations
of words here understand this double meaning. But others
set forth the meaning in such ways as: " It is virtue in the
sense of being the head (sird), in the sense of being cool (to)."
3. Now: What are its characteristics, its essence, its
manifestation, its proximate cause ?
So has it been divided, and its mark
Is virtue, even as visibility 1
The mark of objects is.
For just as visibility is the characteristic mark of the
different varieties of form such as indigo, yellow, and so on,
because albeit of such various kinds they do not go beyond
visibility, so what has been said about being virtuous by way
of the right placing of bodily actions and so forth, and of
the establishment of moral states, is the characteristic mark
of the different varieties of virtue such as volition and so on,
because, notwithstanding its various kinds, it does not go
beyond right placing and establishment. And concerning
virtue, as possessing such a characteristic, this has been said :
Her active property or essence lies
In excellence and war against all sin.
Therefore this virtue possesses the essence, in the sense
of function, of destroying wickedness; and has the essence,
in the sense of property, of faultlessness. For when the
characteristics and so on are mentioned, essence is said to
be either function or property.
It manifests itself as purity;
Its proximate cause is the sense of shame
And dread of blame (for so the wise give praise).
 This virtue has, as its manifestation, purity, said to be
purity of body, of speech, and of mind. It is considered to
1 Read sanidassanattam perception of form, that is, perception of
objects through the visual sense, is, for all that sense by itself can tell us,
perception of various colour-areas and nothing more.
I. Exposition of Virtue 11
manifest itself as purity. Sense of shame and dread of blame
are extolled by the wise as its proximate cause, which means
immediate reason. For in the presence of sense of shame
and dread of blame, virtue arises and establishes itself : in their
absence it does not arise nor establish itself. Thus are to
be understood its characteristic, essence, manifestation, and
4. What are its advantages ?
The acquirement of various qualities such as absence of
remorse. For it has been said, " Ananda, moral virtues have
absence of remorse for benefit and advantage." 1 Further,
" Householders, five are the advantages of the fulfilment of virtue
obtained by the virtuous. What are these five advantages ? In
this world, householders, one virtuous, endowed with virtue,
acquires much wealth chiefly owing to the effect of non-negligence.
This is the first advantage of the fulfilment of virtue by the
virtuous. Again, householders, of one virtuous, endowed with
virtue, a good report is noised abroad. This is the second
advantage of the fulfilment of virtue by the virtuous. Again,
householders, to whatsoever assembly one virtuous, endowed with
virtue, goes, he enters boldly and unperturbed, whether it be an
assembly of princes, an assembly of brahmins, an assembly of
laymen, or an assembly of monks. This is the third advantage
of the fulfilment of virtue by the virtuous. Again, householders,
one virtuous, endowed with virtue, dies undeluded. This is
the fourth advantage of the fulfilment of virtue by the virtuous.
Again, householders, one virtuous, endowed with virtue, on the
dissolution of the body after death, reaches a happy destiny,
a heavenly world. This is the fifth advantage of the fulfilment
of virtue by the virtuous." 2
Furthermore: " Brethren, should a brother desire to be dear
and precious to, respected and honoured by his fellow-monks,
he should fulfil the virtues" 3 In such wise have the various
advantages of virtue, beginning with loveableness and
preciousness and ending in the destruction of the intoxicants,
been mentioned. Thus various qualities such as absence
1 Anguttara v, 1. a Dlgha ii, 86. 3 Mnjjhima i, 33.
12 The Path of Purity
of remorse constitute the advantages of virtue.  More-
The true religion gives to noble sons
No other stay than virtue. Who can tell
The limit of her power ? Not Ganga stream
Nor Yamuna nor babbling Sarabhu,
Nor Aciravati nor Mahi's flood,
Can purify on earth the taints of men.
But virtue's water can remove the stain
Of all things living. Necklaces or pearl,
Rain-bearing breezes, yellow sandalwood,
Gems, nor soft rays of moonlight can destroy
Heart-burnings of a creature. She alone
Virtue well-guarded, noble, cool, avails.
What scent else blows with and against the wind ?
What stairway leads like her to heaven's gate ?
W r hat door into Nibbana's city opes ?
The Sage whose virtue is his ornament
Outshines the pomp and pearls of jewelled kings.
In virtuous men 1 virtue destroys self-blame,
Begetting joy and praise. Thus should be known
The sum of all the discourse on the power
Of virtue, root of merits, slayer of faults.
Now this is the answer to
5. How many kinds of it are there ?
(i) All this virtue is of one kind through its characteristic
of being virtuous (monad i.).
(ii) It is of two kinds as positive or negative rules of
conduct (dyad 1) ; likewise as the minor or the major precepts 2
(dyad 2); as abstinence or non- abstinence (dyad 3); as inter-
ested or disinterested (dyad 4); as practised for a limited
period of life or until the end of life (dyad 5); as violable or
inviolable (dyad 6); as worldly or transcendental (dyad 7).
 (iii) It is of three kinds as inferior, middling or
superior (triad 1); likewise as dominantly influenced by self,
1 Note the plural form yatino instead of yatayo.
2 Or, the specialized or fundamental precepts.
I. Exposition of Virtue 13
by the world, or by the Law 1 (triad 2); as misconstrued, not
misconstrued, or tranquillized (triad 3); as pure, impure,
or doubtful (triad 4) ; as probationary, adept, or neither pro-
bationary nor adept (triad 5).
(iv) It is of four kinds as partaking of deterioration, of
stability, of speciality, or of penetration (tetrad 1); likewise
as concerning the brethren, concerning the sisters, concerning
novices, or concerning laymen (tetrad 2) ; as natural, customary
practice, fixed law, or the fruit of former conditions (tetrad 3) ;
and as restraint according to the Patimokkha, restraint of the
controlling faculties, purity of livelihood, or connected with
the requisites (tetrad 4).
(v) It is of five kinds as limited precepts of purity, unlimited
precepts of purity, completed precepts of purity, precepts of
purity not misconstrued, or tranquillized precepts of purity,
according to what has been said in the Patisambhida,
(pentad 1) ; likewise as rejection, abstention, volition, restraint,
or non-transgression (pentad 2).
(i) In the onefold portion (monad 1) the meaning is to be
understood as has been said above. 2
(ii) In the twofold portion (dyad 1) the fulfilling of the
precepts enacted by the Blessed One thus: " This ought to be
practised," is a positive rule of conduct; the non-doing of
what has been prohibited as, " This ought not to be practised,"
is a negative rule of conduct. Here is the word-definition:
by having fulfilled the precepts those who are endowed with
a precept are practised in it ' positive rule of conduct.'
By means of it they avoid, guard against a prohibition
' negative rule of conduct.' Of these two, the former is
accomplished by the effort of faith, the latter by faith. Thus
it is twofold as positive and negative rules of conduct.
In the second dyad special precept means the highest
precept. 'Specialized ' is just special. Or, what is emu-ted
with reference to a special precept is the ' specialized precept.'
a synonym for the precept which remains over from the Bet
- 1*. 9.
14 The Path of Purity
of eight precepts of which pure livelihood is the eighth. 1
' The fundamental precept ' is the foundation of the exalted
practice of the Path; and is a synonym for the set of eight
precepts of which pure livelihood is the eighth. This set of
eight is the foundation of the Path, because it ought to be in
purified practice previous to the Path. Hence (the Buddha)
has said: "Previously his bodily action, his vocal action, his
livelihood have been well purified." 2 Or, what has been declared
to be the minor and lesser precepts,  is the " minor pre-
cept." The remainder is the " major precept." Or, that
which is included in both the Yibhanga's, 3 is the " major
precept"; that which is included in the Khandhaka 4 duties
is the " minor precept." The former is perfected by perfec-
tion in the latter. Hence (the Buddha) has said: " Brethren,
it is impossible that a brother without fulfilling the law of the
minor precept, should fulfil the law of the major precept." 5
Thus it is twofold, as minor and major precepts (or specialized
In the third dyad, the mere abstention from life-taking
and so on, is the virtue of abstinence. The remaining volition
and so on, is the virtue of non-abstinence. Thus it is twofold
as abstinence and non-abstinence.
In the fourth dyad ' interested ' means that there are two
inducements : the inducement of craving and the inducement of
views. Of these two that which arises from a desire to attain
(a blissful) existence thus: " By means of this virtue I shall
become a dera or a certain deva," 6 is the inducement of craving.
That which arises from pure views thus: " By means of this
virtue there will be purity," 7 is the inducement of views. And
there is the transcendental virtue, and there is the worldly
virtue which is a constituent of this these constitute the
1 Viz. the purified actions, three of deed and four of speech, and pure
livelihood. Cf. Expositor 505.
2 Cf. Anguttara iii, 124 /.
3 I.e. precepts for the brethren and the sisters as laid down in the
Patimokkha, Vinaya Texts i (Sacred Books of the East).
4 I.e. in the Mahavagga and Cullavagga, Ib. i, ii, iii.
6 Angultara iii, 14. 6 Ib. iv, 461. 7 Dhammasangani 1005
I. Exposition of Virtue 15
" disinterested virtue." Thus it is twofold, as interested and
In the fifth dyad the virtue which is practised within a
time-limit is " for a limited period of life." That which arises
so long as it is practised during a life-time is 'until the end of
life.' Thus it is twofold, as practised for a limited period of
life, and until the end of life.
In the sixth dyad that which is limited by present gain,
pomp, relatives, limbs and life, is known as " violable."
What is contrary to that is " inviolable." And this has been
said in the Patisambhida: 1 ' What is that virtue which is
violable ? There is virtue violable by gain, there is virtue
violable by pomp, there is virtue violable by relatives, there is
virtue violable by limbs, there is virtue violable by life. What is
that virtue which is violable by gain ? Some one in the world
on account of, by reason of, for the sake of gain transgresses any
precept that may have been observed. Such  is the virtue
that is violable by gain.' In this way the others also should be
expanded. In the answers concerning the inviolable, also, it
has been said: 2 " What is that virtue which is not violable by
gain ? In this world, on account of, by reason of, for the sake of
gain, a certain person does not give rise even to a thought of
transgressing any precept that may have been observed. How,
then, will he transgress it ? Such virtue is not violable by gain."
In this way also the others should be expanded. Thus it is
twofold, as violable and as inviolable.
In the seventh dyad all virtue which is accompanied by
(or the object of) the intoxicants is " worldly "; that which
is not accompanied by the intoxicants is " transcendental."
Of these two worldly virtue brings about distinction in present
life, and is a constituent part of the escape from existence.
As has been said: 3 " Discipline is for the purpose of restraint,
which is for the purpose of absence of remorse, which is for
the purpose of gladness, which is for the purpose of rapture, which
is for the purpose of repose, which is for the purpose of blix#.
which is for the purpose of concentration, which is for the purpose
i i, 43. a Ib. i, 44. 3 Vinaya v, 164.
16 The Path of Purity
of knowing and seeing the truth, which is for tlie purpose of
disgust, which is for the purpose of dispassion, which is for the
purpose of emancipation, which is for the purpose of knowing and
seeing emancipation, which is for the purpose of birthless
Parinibbdna. 1 For such purpose is the discourse (on the
Discipline), for such purpose is the consultation, for such purpose
is the groundwork, for such purpose is the attentiveness, namely,
the emancipation of the mind devoid of grasping." Transcen-
dental virtue brings about escape from existence, and is the
ground of retrospective knowledge. Thus it is twofold, as
worldly and transcendental.
(iii) Among the triads : In the first triad, that virtue which
arises through inferior conation, consciousness, energy, or
investigation, is "inferior"; that through middling conation
and so on is "middling"; that through superior conation and
so on is ' superior." Or, that which is practised from a
desire for pomp is " inferior "; that for a meritorious result is
" middling" ; that which is practised in connection with Ariyan-
ship, 2 thus: "' This is what ought to be done," 3 is " superior."
Or, virtue corrupted by exalting self and disparaging others,
thus: " I am possessed of virtue; but these other brethren are
wicked and evil in nature," is "inferior"; worldly virtue
uncorrupted is "middling"; transcendental virtue is
" superior." Or, that virtue which arises for the sake of
wealth and property by way of craving is " inferior "; that
for the sake of self -emancipation is " middling"; while that
virtue of the perfections which arises for the sake of the
emancipation of all beings, is " superior." Thus, it is three-
fold as inferior, middling, and superior.
In the second triad that virtue w^hich arises out of self-
respect, having regard for self, and from a desire to put
away what is improper for self,  is " dominantly influenced
1 Anupadaparinibbana, i.e. entrance into Nibbana which, not grasp-
ing after anything, leaves no material form behind and does not give
rise to rebirth.
2 On the definition of Ariyan see Expositor 452.
3 The Tika reads : in connection with Ariyanship out of a loathing
for evil: ' How shall one like me do such evil ?'
I. Exposition of Virtue 17
by self." That which arises out of respect for the world,
having regard for the world, and from a desire to avoid accusa-
tion by the world, is u dominantly influenced by the world."
That which arises out of respect for the Law, having regard
for the Law, and from a desire to honour the greatness of
the Law, is " dominantly influenced by the Law." Thus it is
threefold as dominantly influenced by self, and so on.
In the third triad that virtue which in the dyads (dyad 4)
was said to be ' interested,' is ' misconstrued ' through the
misconstruction of craving and views. That virtue which is
a constituent part of the path of a good average person and
which is associated with the path of the probationers, is
' not misconstrued.' That which is associated with the fruition
of probation and adeptship is " tranquillized." Thus it is
threefold as misconstrued and so on.
In the fourth triad that virtue which is fulfilled without
committing an offence or by atoning for an offence committed,
is '"' pure " ; the virtue of one who has not atoned for an offence
committed is " impure"; the virtue of one who has doubts
regarding the object, the offence, or the transgression, is known
as " doubtful." Of these, the religious meditator should
purify the impure virtue; and when there is doubt, it should
be dispelled by not transgressing against the object. So will it
be pleasant for him. Thus it is threefold as pure, and so on.
In the fifth triad virtue associated with the four Ariyan
Paths and the three fruitions of monkhood is *' probationary " ;
that which is associated with the fruition of sanctity is
" adept " ; the rest is " neither probationary nor adept." Thus
it is threSf old as probationary, and so on. But virtue is spoken
of as simply the natural dispositions of the various beings in the
world, so that, as referring to their virtue, one speaks of a
man who has a disposition for ease, of one who has a dis-
position for ill, of one who has a disposition for quarrels, of
one who has a disposition for beautification ; thus, therefore, in
the Patisambhida 1 there are three kinds of virtue: moral, im-
moral, and unmoral. Hence it is said to be threefold, as moral,
18 The Path of Purity
and so on. Of these three, immoral virtue does not correspond
to any of the characteristics of the virtue which is meant here,
therefore this triad has not been brought in here. Hence the
division of the triads is to be understood in accordance with
the method here given.
(iv) In the first of the tetrads :
Who serveth here the wicked, not the good,
Seeth no injury to anything,
Because he is unwise.  Full of wrong thoughts,
He heeds not the controlling faculties,
And all his virtue to corruption turns.
Who is content with his own virtue won,
Nor will bestir him to apply his mind
In stations of religious exercise,
Pleased with his virtue, seeking nothing higher,
This brother's virtue turns to stagnancy.
The virtuous, seeking fixity of thought,
His virtue to pre-eminence is turned.
Dissatisfied, wrapped in world-weariness,
This brother's virtue is to insight turned.
Thus it is fourfold as partaking of deterioration, and so on.
In the second tetrad there are precepts enacted for the
brethren, who should keep them separate from those enacted
for the sisters. This is virtue " concerning the brethren."
There are precepts enacted for the sisters, who should keep
them separate from those enacted for the brethren. This is
virtue " concerning the sisters." The ten precepts for novices
male and female constitute virtue " concerning novices."
There are five precepts ten if possible for the constant
practice of lay-disciples, male and female. Eight are by way
of duties for the sacred day. These constitute virtue " con-
cerning laymen." Thus it is fourfold as concerning the
brethren, and so on.
In the third tetrad non-transgression by men of Uttara-
kuru 1 is " natural " virtue. The regulated conduct of various
people according to family customs, localities, beliefs, is
1 One of the ' four Great Islands.'
I. Exposition of Virtue 19
virtue " as customary practice." The virtue of the mother
of the future Buddha, declared thus: " This is a fixed law,
Ananda, that when the future Buddha descended into the mother's
wotnb, she had no thought connected with lust for men," 1 is
virtue " as fixed law." The virtue of such pure beings as
Mahakassapa, and others, and of the future Buddha in many
births, is virtue " as the fruit of former conditions." Thus
it is fourfold as natural, and so on.
In the fourth tetrad, (a) that virtue which has been declared
by the Blessed One thus: "Here (in this religion) a brother
lives, being restrained by the restraint of the Pdtimokkha, is
possessed of good behaviour and lawful resort, sees danger in
the smallest faults, trains himself in the observance of the pre-
cepts" 2 this is virtue " as restraint according to the Pati-
mokkha." (6) Virtue " as restraint of the controlling
faculties," is that virtue which has been declared thus: " Whm
he sees an object with his eye,  he is not entranced by the
general appearance or the details of it. He sets himself to
restrain that which might give occasion for immoral states,
covetousness, and grief to flow in over him while he dwells un-
restrained as to the faculty of sight. He keeps watch over his
faculty of sight, and he attains to mastery over it. And so, in
like manner, when he hears a sound with his ear, or smells an
odour with his nose, or tastes a flavour with his tongue, or feels
a touch with his body, or cognizes an idea with his mind, he is net
entranced by the general appearance or the details of it. He
sets himself to restrain that which might give occasion for immoral
states, covetousness, and grief to flow in over him while he dwells
unrestrained as to the faculty of mind. He keeps watch over
his mental (representative) faculty, and he attains to mastery
over it." 3 (c) The abstinence from wrong livelihood arisen by
way of evil states, such as the transgression of the six precepts
encicted for the sake of livelihood, and as " trickery, boastful
talk (about self and donors), insinuation (in almsgiving),
crushing slander, hungering to add gain to gain," 4 is virtue
" as purity of livelihood." (d) The use of the four requisites
i Majjhima iii, 121. 2 Vibhanga 244. 3 Dlgha i, 70.
* Vibhanga 345. Cf. Dialogues of the Buddha i, 15.
20 The Path of Purity
after pure reflection set forth after this manner : " He accepts
the robe wisely reflecting that it is only for the warding off of
cold," 1 is known as virtue " connected with the requisites."
5 (iv, a). Virtue as restraint according to the Patimokkha.
Herein (i.e. dealing with the four kinds of the fourth tetrad)
this is the deciding discourse together with the word-by-word
comment from the beginning: "Here" means, "in this
religion." " Brother " is a son of respectable family, who from
faith becomes a monk in the customary way, because of
his viewing danger in the stream of existence, or of wearing
torn shattered rags, and so forth. In " being restrained by
the restraint of the Patimokkha," " Patimokkha " is the
virtue of the precepts. It delivers, releases him who guards it,
observes it, from the ills of the states of woe and so forth
hence it is called " Patimokkha." The restraining is
i- restraint," a name for non-transgression, bodily and vocal.
" The restraint of the Patimokkha " means that the Pati-
mokkha itself is the restraint. " Being restrained by the
restraint of the Patimokkha " means, to be restrained by that
Patimokkha-restraint. Attained to, endowed with, is the
meaning. " Lives " means comports himself.
 The meaning of, " is possessed of good behaviour and
lawful resort," and so on, is to be understood in the way that
comes in the Pali text. 2 For this has been said: ' He is
possessed of good behaviour and lawful resort. There is good
behaviour and there is misbeJtaviour. Of these what is misbe-
haviour? Bodily transgression, vocal transgression, bodily-
and-vocal transgression, this is called misbehaviour. All
wickedness also is misbehaviour. A certain member of the
Order here obtains his livelihood by a gift of bamboos, of
leaves, of flowers, or fruits, or bath-powder, or tooth-sticks, by
fawning, by bean-curry talk, by nurture (of supporters' chil-
dren), by carrying messages on foot, or by any other means of
wrong livelihood loathed by the Buddhas. This is called
1 Majjhima i, 10. The remaining portion of this quotation is brought
out and commented on in p. 36 /.
2 Vibhanga 246.
I. Exposition of Virtue 21
And what is good behaviour? Bodily non-transgression,
vocal non-transgression, bodily-and-vocal non-transgression
this is called good behaviour. All virtue-restraint also is good
behaviour. A certain member of the Order here does not obtain
his livelihood by a gift of bamboos . . . loathed by the Buddhas.
This is called good behaviour. As regards lawful resort there
is lawful resort, and there is unlawful resort. Of these, what
is unlawful resort ? A certain member of the Order here
resorts (for alms) to a harlot, a widow, an old maid, a eunuch,
a nun, or a liquor shop ; against the 'precepts, he associates after
the manner of laymen, with kings, ministers, heretical teachers,
and their disciples; serves, follows, attends on families of faithless
unbelievers, who abuse and censure the brethren and sisters,
the lay-disciples male and female, not wishing their good, benefit,
comfort or security (from the burden of ill).  This is called
unlawful resort. And what is lawful resort ? A certain
member of the Order here does not resort to a harlot . . . does
not associate after the manner of laymen, against the precepts,
with kings . . . serves, follows, attends on faithful families
of believers who are welling springs (for the benefit of monks),
who love the shining of yellow robes and the odour of sanctity,
and who desire the good, benefit, comfort, and security of the
brethren and sisters, of the lay-disciples male and female.
This is called lawful resort. Thus being full of, fulfilled with,
arrived at, attained to, possessed of, fully possessed of, endowed
with such good behaviour and such lawful resort, one is said
to be" possessed of good behaviour and lawful resort."
Further, " good behaviour and lawful resort" here should
be understood also in this way: For misbehaviour is twofold,
bodily and vocal. Of these what is bodily misbehaviour '$
A certain member of the Order here, having gone to an
assembly of the Order, stands and sits rudely brushing against
the senior brethren; stands and sits in front; sits on a high
seat; sits with his head covered; speaks while standing and
while stretching out his arm ; walks up and down with sandals
on while the senior brethren walk without sandals; walks
above while they walk below; walks on the promenade while
they walk on the ground; stands and sits pushing himself
22 The Path of Purity
close to the senior brethren; withholds seats from the new
brethren; without the permission of the senior brethren
throws down fire- wood in the fire-shed and shuts its door ;
goes down to the bathing-place brushing against the senior
brethren and before them ; takes a bath brushing against them
and before them ; comes up brushing against them and before
them ; enters among houses brushing against them and before
them ; departing from their side goes in front of them ; enters
abruptly into the secret and private rooms of respectable
people, where their women and daughters are sitting down,
and strokes the head of a child. This is called bodily mis-
And what is vocal misbehaviour ? A certain member of the
Order here goes to an assembly of the Order, and without ask-
ing leave of the senior brethren rudely speaks on the Law,
answers a question and expounds the Patimokkha; speaks
while standing,  and while stretching out his arm; goes
among houses, and says to a woman or a girl: "Madam
so-and-so, of such and such a family, what is there to eat
and drink ? Is there rice-gruel ? Is there food ? Is there
something to eat ? What shall we drink ? What shall we
eat ? Of what shall we partake ? What will you give me ?"
Thus he chatters. This is called vocal misbehaviour. Good
behaviour should be understood as its opposite. Further-
more, a brother is respectful, obedient, possessed of a sense of
shame and dread of blame, wears his inner and outer robes
properly, is distinguished by his gracious manner of advancing,
of retreating, of looking ahead, of looking sideways, of bending
and stretching his limbs, keeps his eyes lowered, is possessed
of good deportment, keeps a guarded door as respects his
controlling faculties, is moderate in food, devoted to keeping
awake, endowed with mindfulness and comprehension, free
from desires, contented, strenuously energetic, a respectful
observer of the minor precepts, and full of regard for worthy
things. This is called good behaviour. So far it should be
Lawful resort is of three kinds: as a sufficing condition,
as a guardian, and as a bond. Of these what is lawful resort
I. Exposition of Virtue 23
as a sufficing condition ? A good friend endowed with the
qualities of the ten subjects of discourse, owing to whom one
hears what has not hitherto been heard, purifies what has been
heard, gets beyond one's doubts, rectifies one's views and
composes one's mind; or under whose training one increases
in faith, virtue, learning, self-sacrifice, wisdom, is called
lawful resort as a sufficing condition.
What is lawful resort as a guardian ? A brother here,
on entering among the houses of a village and walking along
the streets, goes lowering his eyes, looking before him not
further than the distance of a plough, and is well-restrained.
He does not go looking at an elephant, a horse, a chariot,
a pedestrian, a woman, or a man. He does not go looking
above, down, or in different directions. This is called lawful
resort as a guardian.
What is lawful resort as a bond ? The four applications of
mindfulness 1 wherein the mind is bound. For this has been
said by the Blessed One: " Brethren, what is the lawful resort
of a brother, his paternal province ? It is the four applications
of mindfulness" 2 This is called lawful resort as a bond.
Thus being full of ... endowed with such good behaviour
and lawful resort, one is said to be " possessed of good be-
haviour and lawful resort."
 " Sees danger in the smallest faults" is in the habit
of seeing danger in the various kinds of the smallest faults,
such as are unintentional, committed in the course of his
training, produced by immoral states of consciousness.
" Trains himself in the observance of the precepts "
trains himself by observing all that ought to be observed in
the precepts. And here by so much of the text " being
restrained by the restraint of the Patimokkha," the virtue of
the Patimokkha-restraint is indicated by the exposition,
determined by the person. But all beginning with " is
possessed of good behaviour and lawful resort " should be
understood to have been said to indicate that practice which
arises for any one who practises it.
1 I.e. as regards the body, feelings, thought, and states.
2 Sayyutta v, 148.
24 The Path of Purity
5 (iv, 6). Virtue as restraint of the Controlling Faculties.
In virtue as restraint of the Controlling Faculties which
has been shown in this way, " when he sees an object with his
eye," and so on (p. 19), " He " is a brother established in
virtue which is of the-Patimokkha-restraint.
" When (he) sees an object with his eye," when he sees
an object by means of visual cognition commonly called the
eye as instrument, and capable of seeing an object. But the
Ancients have said: " The eye does not see the object in the
absence of the mind. The mind does not see the object in
the absence of the eye. But one sees by the mind with the
sentient eye as basis, when an impact takes place between
the door (of the eye) and the object." Nevertheless, such a
discourse as the present one really refers to the constituent
parts of sight in the same sense as when one says, " He
pierces with a bow," and so forth. Therefore the meaning here
is, " when he sees an object by visual cognition."
" Is not entranced by the general appearance," does not
seize the general appearance as furnishing a basis for corrup-
tion, such as the general appearance of a woman, a man, or of
any desirable form, and so on. He stops at what is actually
seen. " Is not entranced by the details of it," does not
seize the different modes of hand, foot, smiling, laughing,
speaking, looking ahead, looking sideways, and so forth,
which have obtained the common name of " details " by
reason of repeated expression as a manifestation of the
corruptions. He seizes only what appears (as the abominable
thirty-two parts) in the body, like Mahatissa the Elder who
lived at Mount Cetiya. It is said that a certain daughter-in-
law, having broken with her husband and having well beauti-
fied and dressed herself like a celestial nymph, left Anuradha-
pura betimes, and, while going to the home of her relatives,
saw on the way the Elder, who was coming to Anuradhapura
from Mount Cetiya for the sake of alms, and with corrupt
thoughts  laughed aloud. The Elder, wondering what it
was, looked up, and acquiring the perception of the foul
in her teeth (-bones), attained Sanctity. Hence it has been
I. Exposition of Virtue 25
'' Those bones, her teeth, he saw, and called to mind
His first perception. Even where he stood
The Elder thus attained to Sanctity."
And the husband, following the same road, saw the Elder
and enquired: "Perhaps Your Reverence has met a certain
lady ?" The Elder replied :
" I know not whether man or woman passed.
A certain lump of bones went by this way."
In " which might give occasion," and so on, these states
such as covetousness and so forth might flow in over, might
pursue this person who dwells with the door of his sight open
without shutting the faculty of sight by the door-leaf of mind-
fulness on account of, by reason of, whatsoever non-restraint
of the faculty of sight. " He sets himself to restrain that,"
sets himself to shut his faculty of sight by the door-leaf of
mindfulness. Only he who is practising thus is said " to keep
watch over his faculty of sight and to attain to mastery over
it," whereby, if there is neither restraint nor non-restraint in
the faculty of sight, it is because there arises neither mindful-
ness nor forgetfulness with reference to the sentient eye.
But indeed, when a visible object enters the avenue of sight,
then, on the cessation of the subconsciousness after arising
two or three times, the inoperative mind-element (or, the
five-door-adverting) arises, accomplishing the function of
adverting, and then ceases. Then arise and cease in order,
the visual cognition accomplishing the function of seeing,
the resultant mind-element accomplishing the function of
receiving, the resultant element of mind-cognition without
root-conditions accomplishing the function of scrutinizing,
and the inoperative element of mind-cognition without root-
conditions accomplishing the function of determining.
Immediately afterwards, apperception takes place. But
still in these processes there is neither restraint nor non-
restraint at the time of subconsciousness, or of any one of the
processes beginning with adverting. But if at the moment
of apperception there arises wickedness, forgetfulness, lack
26 The Path of Purity
of knowledge, lack of patience, or laziness, then there is non-
restraint. Such non-restraint is called " non-restraint in the
faculty of sight."  And why ? Because when it arises
the door is unguarded, and so also the sub consciousness and
the thought-processes beginning with adverting. Like what ?
Just as although the interior of houses, door- entrances and
chambers, and so forth, may be well closed, yet when the
four doors in a town are not closed, all treasure within the
town is unguarded, unprotected, so that thieves entering by
a door of the town may do what they please, so when
wickedness and so forth arise at apperception, when non-
restraint is present thereat, the door is unguarded, and
so also are the subconsciousness and the thought-processes
beginning with adverting. But when virtue and so on arise
at apperception, the door is guarded, and so also are the
subconsciousness and the thought-processes beginning with
adverting. Like what? Just as, although the interior of
houses and so on may not be closed, yet when the doors
of the town are well closed, all treasure within the town is
well guarded, well protected, and there is no entrance for
thieves through the closed doors of the town, so, when virtue
and so forth arise at apperception, the door is guarded and
so also are the subconsciousness and the thought-processes
beginning with adverting. Hence, although it arises at the
apperceptional moment, it is said to be restraint in the
faculty of sight. And the same with, " when he hears a sound
with his ear," and so on. And thus briefly, virtue as restraint
of the controlling faculties should be understood as possessing
the characteristic of not being entranced by such outward
signs and so on in following the corruptions in visible objects,
and so forth.
5 (iv, c). Virtue as Purity of Livelihood.
Passing now to virtue as Purity of Livelihood (p. 19),
spoken of immediately after virtue as restraint of the con-
trolling faculties: " Of the six precepts enacted for the sake
of livelihood " means for the sake of, on account of liveli-
hood, one with evil desires, oppressed by desire, lays claim
untruly, falsely, to possession of a quality pertaining only to
I. Exposition of Virtue 27
the highest kind of men, 1 whereby he commits a Parajika
offence. 2 For the sake of, on account of livelihood, one acts
as go-between, and so commits the Sanghadisesa offence.
For the sake of, on account of livelihood, one knowingly
proclaims (for gain) that a certain brother who lives in one's
monastery is a saint, and so commits the Thullaccaya offences.
For the sake of, on account of livelihood, a brother, not being
ill, demands for his own benefit and eats delicious food, and
so commits the Pacittiya offence. For the sake of, on account
of livelihood, a sister, not being ill, demands. for her own benefit
and eats delicious food, and so commits the Patidesaniya
offence. For the sake of, on account of livelihood, one not being
ill, demands for one's own benefit, soup or rice, 3  and so
commits the Dukkata offence, thus are laid down these six
precepts in the words, " Of these six precepts, and so on."
Of ' trickery,' and so on, this is the Pali text: 4 ' What here
is "trickery?" The adjusting, establishing, regulating, of the
postures, knitting the brows, the state of knitted brows, trickery,
its production and its state on the part of one of evil desires,
oppressed by desire, who relies upon gain, honour, and fame, in
what is called his acquisition of the requisites and in his round-
about talk (with a show of wisdom) this is called " trickery."
'What here is " boastful talk?" Initial talk, boastful talk,
repeated talk, flattering talk, very flattering talk, binding speech,
encircling speech, praise, full praise, pleasant speech, fawning,
bean-curry talk, nurture (of supporters' children) on the part
of one of evil desires, oppressed by desire, who relies upon gain,
honour, and fame this is called " boastful talk"
' What here is " insinuation?" A sign, making a sign, a hint,
giving a hint, roundabout talk, winding speech on the part of
one of evil desires, oppressed by desire, who relies upon gain,
honour, and fame this is called " insinuation"
1 I.e. those on the Higher Path to Sanctity.
a This and the following five are names of offences against the
Vinaya of a descending degree in seriousness, from the first kind which
involves immediate and lifelong expulsion from the Order, down to the
last which only entails reprimand from a senior brother or sister.
3 Vinaya v, 146. * Vibhanga352f.
28 The Path of Purity
' What here is " crushing slander ?" Abusing, reviling,
blaming, sarcastically praising (or casting out), sarcastically
praising much (or totally casting out), ridiculing, much ridicul-
ing, accusing, fully accusing, dealing in dispraise, backbiting
on the part of one of evil desires, oppressed by desire, who relies
upon gain, honour, and fame this is called " crushing slander."
' What here is " hungering to add gain to gain?" The search,
earnest search, full search, the seeking, earnest seeking, full
seeking, for one fleshly need by means of another fleshly need,
in such wise as taking what has been obtained in this place to
that place and bringing what has been obtained in that place to this
place, on the part of one of evil desires, oppressed by desire,
who relies upon gain, honour, and fame this is called " hunger-
ing to add gain to gain."
And the meaning of this Pali text is to be understood thus :
In the exposition of " trickery," " who relies upon gain,
honour, and fame," means, relies upon gain, and honour, and
the report of good repute; desiring is the meaning.  " Of
evil desires " means, desirous of showing off imaginary
merits. " Oppressed by desire " means, set apart by, i.e.
oppressed by, desire. After this, because the threefold basis
of trickery comes in the Mahaniddesa, 1 as the acquisition of
the requisites, roundabout talk, and dependence on the four
postures, therefore, in order to set forth this threefold basis, a
beginning is made with in what is catted his acquisition of the
requisites and so on, where " basis of trickery that is called his
acquisition of the requisites " is to be understood as the admira-
tion of him which causes the presentation to him of requisites in
cartloads, since, much as he wants them on account of evil de-
sire, he refuses the robes and so forth offered to him, as knowing
also the householders' firm faith in him that he shows favour 2
to those who offer excellent robes in divers ways, exclaiming :
" Ah ! what little desire has our master ! He does not want
to take anything. It would indeed be great gain to us were
he to accept a little from us !"
2 Implying that he accepts the gifts offered not because he -wants
them, but only in order that the donors may obtain merit.
I. Exposition of Virtue 29
For it has been said in the Mahaniddesa: 1
" What is the basis of trickery that is called his acquisition of
the requisites ? Householders here below invite a brother to accent
the four requisites, namely, a robe, alms, dwelling, and medicine
for the sick; and he, of evil desires, oppressed by desire, much as
he wants them, refuses the robe owing to his desire for more ;
refuses the alms, the dwelling, the medicine for the sick. And
he speaks thus : ' What is the use of a costly robe to a monk ?
It is proper that a monk should pick up rotten nigs from a
graveyard, refuse-heap, or from shop-refuse, and make and
wear his robe. What is the use of grand alms to a monk ? It
is proper that he should maintain life by whatever morsels of
food he has received on his begging round. What is the use
of a costly dwelling to a monk ? It is proper that he should live
at the foot of a tree or under the open sky. What is the use of
costly medicine for the sick to a monk ? It is proper that he
should make medicine out of putrid cow-urine or bits of myro-
balan.' And accordingly he wears a coarse robe, eats coarse
food,  resorts to a coarse dwelling, resorts to coarse medicine
for the sick. Him the householders know thus: ' This monk
is of few wants, contented, secluded, set apart from laymen,
strenuously energetic, and ascetic.' And so all the more they
invite him to accept robes, alms, dwelling and medicine for the
sick. And he says: ' Through the presence of three things a
faithful son of noble family gets much merit. From the presence
of faith, of the thing offered, and of those worthy of receiving
the gift, a faithful son of noble family get* much merit. You
have indeed faith, and there is the gift, and 1 ant, worthy to receive
it. Were I not to accept it you would be deprived of the oppor-
tunity of earning merit. I have no need of thin gift. However,
I accept it out of compassion for you.' And accordingly he
accepts many robes, much food, many dwellings, much medicine
for the sick. Such knitting of the eyebrows, state of knitted brows,
trickery, its production and its state is known as ' the basis of
trickery that is called his acquisition of the requisites.' '
And the admiration that he excites in various ways by his
words, which seem to show his attainment of qualities possessed
1 Loc. cit.
30 The Path of Purity
by noble men, whereas in truth he is of evil desire, is to be
known as "the basis of trickery that is called roundabout talk."
As has been said : l
" What is the basis of trickery that is called roundabout talk?
A certain member of the. Order here below who is of evil desires,
oppressed by desire, and wishful of obtaining praise, speaks
words appertaining to the Ariyan Law, in so doing hoping that
the people may praise him. And he speaks thus : ' That monk
who wears such and such a robe is a powerful monk.'' He says :
' That monk who has such a bowl, metal cup, water-filler, water-
strainer, key, belt, pair of sandals, is a powerful monk. That
monk who has such and such a preceptor or teacher, such and
such a friend, acquaintance, companion or intimate friend under
the same preceptor and the same teacher . . . that monk who
lives in such and such a monastery, 2 half-roofed monastery, 3
graduated turret, flat turret, cave, cavern, hut, gabled house,
tower, square turret, treasury, service-hall,  pavilion, at
the foot of such and such a tree, is a powerful monk.' More-
over, being repeatedly blinded by the dust of evil desire, knitting
the eyebrows repeatedly, wonderfully tricksome, excessively
talkative and praised for his words, he utters such speech, pro-
found, hidden, subtle, secret, transcendental, connected with the
Void as, ' This monk has acquired such and such calm attain-
ments of the modes of life.' Such knitting of the eyebrows,
state of knitted brows, trickery, its production and state, is spoken
of as ' the basis of trickery that is called roundabout talk.' '
The admiration that he excites by regulating his four
postures 4 with a view to getting praise, he being of evil desires
and oppressed by desire, is to be understood as the " basis of
trickery dependent on the postures." As has been said : 5
" What is the ' basis of trickery that is called the postures?'
A certain member of the Order here below, being of evil desires,
oppressed by desire, and hoping to get praise from the people
2 The roof consisting of two sloping parts which meet at the ridge-
3 The roof being one sloping piece.
4 Viz. walking, standing, sitting, and lying down. 5 Ib. 225.
I. Exposition of Virtue 31
by his actions, adopts an affected style of walking, of lying
down, walks, stands, sits, lies down with a resolve to keep up
appearances, walks, stands, sits, lies down, as though he possessed
concentration, and pretends to be rapt in trance. Such adjusting,
establishing, and regulating of the postures, knitting of the brows,
state of knitted brows, trickery, its production and state, is known
as ' the basis of trickery that is called the postures.' '
In that text (p. 27) :" In what is called his acquisition of the
requisites " means, in his acquisition of the requisites so-called ;
or, in that which is said to be his acquisition of the requisites.
" In his roundabout talk " means by speech bordering on
wisdom. "Of the postures" means of the four postures.
" Adjusting " means initial arrangement or reverential arrange-
ment. " Establishing " means the mode of arrangement.
"Regulating" means perfect arrangement; it is said to
produce faith. ' Knitting of the brows ' is said to mean by
way of showing that he is noble and of the first importance, 1
he knits and contracts his brows. His nature is to knit his
brows; hence he is known as " knitting his brows." The
state of one whose nature is to knit his brows is " state of
knitted brows." " Trickery " means wonderfulness. The
producing of trickery 2 is " production of trickery." The state
of him who works trickery is " state of trickery."
In the exposition of " boastful talk," " initial talk "
means that, on seeing men come to the monastery he begins
the talk thus: " Sirs, for what purpose have you come ? Is it
to invite the brethren ?  If so, proceed; I will follow
with my bowl." Or it means boastful talk turning upon
himself which he makes after presenting himself thus: " I am
Tissa. With me the king is pleased. In me such and such a
royal high minister is pleased." " Boastful talk " means
boasting in the said manner on enquiry being made (as to a
good monk). " Repeated talk " is good talk given freely
to him from among the householders who is afraid the brother
may not be happy in a particular place. "Flattering talk "
means talk flattering to such a person as a millionaire, a great
1 Or, ' is noble and polished ' reading parimatthita/or purimatthita.
2 Or, ' The manner of him who products trickery.'
32 The Path of Purity
boat-owner, a lord of great charities. " Very flattering talk "
means talk flattering a person on all sides. " Binding speech "
means that he talks thus: " Lay-disciples, formerly at such a
time you used to offer the first fruits. AVhy do you not ofier
them now ?" And he goes on binding and enveloping them
with his talk until they say, " Sir, we shall offer. We have
not yet had a chance," and so forth. Or, seeing a man holding
a sugar-cane in his hand, he asks: " Lay-disciple, where have
you brought it from ?" " From the sugar-cane field, sir."
" Is the sugar-cane there sweet ?" " Sir, that may be known
after sucking it." " Lay-disciple, it is not proper to say,
give the sugar-cane to the brother." To him who replies
thus it is enveloping speech, which is " binding speech."
Binding repeatedly on all sides is " encircling speech." The
setting forth with flattery thus: " This family knows me only.
If they have anything to give, they give it to me only," is
" praise," said to be " setting forth." Here the Telakanda-
rika 1 story is to be understood. Praising repeatedly on all
sides is '' full praise." Speaking loving words again and
again without regard to anything about the truth or the Law,
is " pleasant speech." " Fawning " is lowliness, speaking
by ever lowering oneself. " Bean-curry talk " bears resem-
blance to a curry of beans. As when beans are cooked some
are not cooked, while the rest are cooked, so when a certain
person speaks, some words are true, while the rest are lies.
Such a person is said to be a " bean-curry-man." His state is
' that of a bean-curry.' " Nurture "  is the state of nur-
turing, the act of him who, like a nurse, nurtures on his hip
or shoulder the children of families carries them is the
meaning. The state of nurturing is " nurture."
In the exposition of " insinuation " " sign " is any act of body
and speech producing a sign to others for the giving of the
requisites. " Making a sign " is the making of a sign as much
as to say, " Did you get any food ?" on seeing others going
along taking food. " Hint " is speech connected with the
requisites. *' Giving a hint " is the production of a hint
1 Telakatahagatha ? See Journal of the Pali Text Society, 1884, 49 /.
I. Exposition of Virtue 33
thus: On seeing cow-herds tending calves, a member of the
Order asks: '' Are these calves sucking the mother's milk or
drinking diluted buttermilk ?" " They are calves sucking
the mother's milk, sir," the cowherds reply. Then he says:
' ' They are not milk-sucking calves. If they were milk-sucking
calves, the brethren also would receive milk." And in this
way he makes the lads inform their parents so that they have
to offer milk. " Roundabout talk " is talk bordering on the
object wanted. Here the story of the brother, frequenter
of a family, should be considered. It is said that a certain
brother, a frequenter of a family, enters the house and sits
down wishing for food. The lady of the house seeing him,
and not wishing to give food, says: " There is no rice," and
goes to a neighbour's house as though to bring rice. Then the
brother enters the interior of the house, and looking about,
sees sugar-cane in a door-corner, molasses in a bowl, flat pieces
of salt fish in a basket, 1 rice in a pot, butter in a jar, and comes
out and sits down. The lady comes back saying she has not
obtained any rice. And the brother says: " Madam, I already
saw a sign that to-day my alms-begging would not be success-
ful." " What may it be, sir ?" "I saw a snake like the
sugar-cane lying there in the door-corner. Looking about
with the intention of striking it, I saw a stone like the molasses
kept there in the bowl. And the snake, struck by the stone,
spread a hood like the fiat pieces of salt-fish kept there in the
basket. The teeth of the snake wanting to bite the stone
were like the rice kept there in the pot. And the saliva mixed
with poison issuing from its mouth in its state of anger
was like the butter kept there in the jar." Then the house-
wife, unable to impose upon the bald-pate, presented him with
the sugar-cane,  cooked the rice, and gave everything,
butter, molasses, fish and all. Thus a talk bordering on
what one desires is " roundabout talk." " Winding speech "
is speaking round and round until one gets what is
In the exposition of " crushing slander " (p. 28) " abusing "
1 Read pitake/or pat ike.
34 The Path of Purity
is abusing by means of the ten terms 1 of abuse. " Revil-
ing " is humiliating speech. " Blaming " is charging another
with fault, such as calling him a person without faith, without
belief. "Casting out" (ukkhepana) is casting out a person
verbally, saying, " Speak not to him about almsgiving."
" Totally casting out " (samukkhepana) is casting out a person
by finding a reason, a cause on all sides. Or, ukkhepana means
" sarcastically praising," whereby, on seeing a person who
has not given alms a monk calls out sarcastically: " Oho!
what a lord of alms !" Samukkhepana is " sarcastically prais-
ing much," whereby he calls out: " What a great lord of
amis!" "Ridiculing" is making fun thus: "What a life is
led by this man who feeds on the seed of kamma !" " Much
ridiculing " is making much fun thus : " What ! do you call this
man a non-giver, who always gives the expression ' nothing ' to
everyone ?" " Accusing " is charging one with a lack of alms-
giving or of praise worthiness. Making charge thus on all
sides is " fully accusing." " Dealing in dispraise " means
that he deals out dispraise of a person from house to house,
village to village, district to district, thinking that from fear
of dispraise that person may give him alms. " Backbiting "
means that he speaks honeyed words in one's presence, and
speaks in dispraise behind one's back. And because such a
speech of one who dares not look another in the face is like
gnawing the flesh off another's back, it is called " backbiting."
" This is called crushing slander " means, because it crushes,
scrapes off another's merits as unguent is scraped off the body
with a split bamboo ; or because it crushes and grinds to powder
another's merits like extracting scent from a fragrant substance
by grinding it; and it (this speech) is also a search after gain,
therefore it is called " crushing slander."
In the exposition of " hungering to add gain to gain,"
" hungering " is tracing out. " W T hat has been obtained in this
place " means what has been obtained from this house. " To
that place" means to that house. "Search" is desiring to
1 I.e. calling a person a thief, a simpleton, a fool, a camel, an ox, an
ass, a denizen of hell, a brute, and saying to him ' There is no salvation
for you,' and ' An evil destiny awaits you.' Dhaminapada Corny, iv, 1 .
I. Exposition of Virtue 35
get. " Earnest search " means tracing out. " Full search "
means tracing out repeatedly.  Here is to be related
the story of the brother who went giving to the boys of
various families whatever had been obtained, beginning from
the first house and getting milk and rice-gruel on the way.
" Seeking " and the others are only synonyms of " search "
and so on. Hence " search " is " seeking," " earnest search "
is "earnest seeking," "full search" is " full seeking "
thus is the construction here to be understood. Such is the
meaning of " trickery " and so on.
Now in, " Of evil states such as " (p. 19, c), by the ex-
pression "such as" inclusion should be understood of the
various evil states spoken of in the Brahmajdla Sutta in this
way: " Whereas some monks and Brahmins, while living on food
provided by the faithful, earn their living by wrong means of
livelihood, by low arts, such as these: 'palmistry, divining by
means of omens and signs, auguries drawn from thunderbolts
and other celestial portents, 'prognostication by interpreting
dreams, fortune-telling from marks on the body, auguries from
the marks on cloth gnawed by mice, sacrificing to Agni, offering
oblations from a spoon" 1 Thus has been indicated this
" wrong livelihood by way of evil states such as the trans-
gression of the six precepts enacted for the sake of livelihood,
and as trickery, boastful talk, insinuation, crushing slander,
hungering to add gain to gain." That abstinence from all
such wrong livelihood is " virtue as purity of livelihood,"
wherein, this is the word-by-word comment : depending on it
people live " life." What is that ? Effort in the search for
the requisites. " Purity" is the state of being pure. " Life-
purity " is the purity of life.
5 (iv, d). Virtue connected with the requisites.
And immediately after this there is mentioned " virtue
connected with the requisites," wherein " wisely reflecting "
means knowing on reflection as to expediency and the right
path: considering is the meaning. The consideration men-
tioned here in such wise as " for the warding off of cold," is
1 Dlijha i, 9.
36 The Path of Purity
to be understood as " wisely reflecting." Here " robe" means
any garment such as the waist-cloth. "Accepts" means
enjoys, wears or puts on. "Only for" is  an expression
showing the limit of purpose. " For the warding off of cold,"
and so forth this is the sole object of the religious medi-
tator in accepting the robe; there is no other. " Of cold"
means of the cold arising to any one either internally by the
disturbance of his own elements, or externally by a change
in the weather. " For the warding off " means for the
purpose of warding off; for the purpose of expelling so
that sickness may not be produced in his body. Because
when the body is afflicted with sickness, one becomes
distracted in mind and cannot wisely strive (for culture),
therefore, the Blessed One allowed the use of a robe for the
warding off of cold. And the same with all the other words. 1
For among them " of heat " means of the heat of fire, i.e.,
heat produced in a jungle-fire, and so forth. In " of the touch
of gadflies, mosquitoes, wind, heat, and reptiles," " gad-
flies " are biting flies, also called blind flies. " Mosquitoes "
are mosquitoes. " Wind " is divided into wind charged with
dust and wind not charged with dust. " Heat " is the sun's
heat. " Reptiles " are those creatures that creep and move
about, such as the long-bodied snakes. Their touch is twofold :
the touch of bite and the touch of contact; and this troubles
not him who is seated covered with a robe. Hence under
these circumstances he accepts a robe for the purpose of the
warding off of such creatures. The repetition of the expres-
sion " only for" is to show the limit of a constant purpose.
For " the covering of one's private parts " is a constant
purpose. The others are so only at times. Here " private
parts " means the interstice between the legs. Indeed, when
any of these parts is revealed, the sense of shame is disturbed,
destroyed : and so because they destroy shame they are called
" the private parts." Hirikoplnapaticchddanatthdni means
for the purpose of covering these private parts. The reading
is also hirikopinaih paticchddanattham.
1 Occurring in Majjhima i, 10, quoted above on p. 20, n. 1.
I. Exposition of Virtue 37
"Alms" means any food. Any food is called "alms"
from its being put into the brother's bowl in his food-gather-
ing. Or " alms " means the collection of morsels of food.
It has been said to be the collection, group of morsels of food,
obtained from various houses. " Not for sport " means not
for purposes of sport like village-boys and so forth; it is said
to be " indicative of play." " Nor for intoxication " means
not for a display of pride like boxers and wrestlers and so
forth; it is said to be " indicative of the pride of strength and
the pride of manhood."  " Nor for personal charm "
means not for the purpose of beautifying oneself like court
people and courtesans and so forth; it is said to be " indicative
of fulness of limbs, big and small." " Nor for beautification "
means not for the purpose of beautifying oneself like actors
and dancers and so forth; it is said to be " indicative of clear-
ness of skin and complexion." Of these, " Not for sport "
has been said in order to remove the sufficing condition of
delusion; "nor for intoxication" has been said in order to
remove the sufficing condition of hate; " nor for personal
charm, nor for beautification," in order to remove the
sufficing condition of lust; " not for sport, nor for intoxica-
tion," in order to prevent the growth of one's own fetters;
" nor for personal charm, nor for beautification," in order to
prevent the growth of another's fetters. And by these four
expressions, rejection of unwise attainment and of devotion
to a life of pleasure should be understood to have been
indicated. The expression " only for " has the meaning
already given. " Of this body " means of this material
body dependent on the four great primary elements.
" For the sustenance " means in order to be stable as
a continuous series. " For the preservation " means in
order that the procedure (of life-controlling-faculty) may not
be cut off; or in order that (the body) may last long. He
accepts alms for the sustenance and preservation of the body
as the owner of a decayed house props up his house, and a cart-
man lubricates (lit. feeds) the axle of his cart; he accepts it,
not for sport nor for intoxication, nor for personal charm.
nor for beautification. Furthermore, " sustenance " is a
38 The Path of Purity
synonym for life-controlling faculty. Hence " for the sus-
tenance, preservation of this body " should so far be under-
stood to mean for the procedure of the life-controlling
faculty of this body. " For the allaying of the pangs of
hunger," in the sense of inflicting pain, hunger is called
" pangs," for the allaying of which he accepts alms, as one
might accept ointment for a wound, or medicine to counter-
act heat and cold, and so forth. "For aiding the practice
of the noble life " means in order to uphold the noble life
of complete instruction in the Law, and the noble life of the
Path. Indeed, he accepts alms in order to uphold the noble
life, practising, as he does, for release from the desert of exis-
tence, by devotion to the three precepts, by means of his
bodily strength on account of his acceptance of alms, as
starving parents might eat their children's flesh in order to
be able to cross a desert, 1 as people who desire to cross a river
rely on a raft, as people who desire to cross the ocean rely on a
ship. " Thus I shall subdue the old feeling and I shall cause
no new feeling to arise " means  he accepts alms giving
heed thus: " By this acceptance of alms I shall subdue the old
feeling of hunger and shall produce no feeling due to im-
moderate eating, like one of those brahmins: one who eats
till he has to be lifted by the hand, or one who eats till his
loin-cloth cannot be retained, or one who has to roll where he
eats, or one who eats till a crow pecks from his mouth, or one
who eats till he vomits." He accepts alms of food as a patient
takes medicine. Or, it is called " old feeling " because it
arises in this life-time owing to unsuitable and unrestricted 2
food on account of old kamma: " destroying its cause by suit-
able and restricted food, I shall subdue the old feeling."
And that feeling which will arise in future through the accumu-
lated kamma of inconsiderate eating in this life-time is called
" new feeling." Causing its root not to arise by means of
considerate eating, I shall produce no new feeling, thus
also is the meaning to be understood. So far should the
compendium on considerate eating, the forsaking of devotion
1 S. ii, 98. - Join asapp&y ii to the folloicing compound in the text.
I. Exposition of Virtue 39
to self -torture, and the non-forsaking of righteous bliss be
understood to have been shown. "And maintenance shall
be mine " means he accepts alms, saying: " By moderate
eating I shall have the preservation or equalization called
the longevity of this body in harmony with causes owing to
the absence of the danger of cutting of! the life-controlling
faculty or of destroying the four postures." He accepts
alms of food as a patient of long suffering accepts healing
medicine. " Faultlessness also and comfort " " faultless-
ness " is by avoiding inconsiderate search, acceptance, and
eating; "comfort" is through moderate eating. Or "fault-
lessness" is due to the absence of such faults as discontent,
drowsiness, sleepy restlessness, and blame by the wise, caused
by unsuitable and immoderate eating. " Comfort " is due to
the production of bodily strength caused by suitable and
moderate eating. Or, " faultlessness " is due to the forsaking
of the pleasure of lying down, pleasure of sleeping on the
side, or the pleasure of torpor, by not eating food to satiety.
By accomplishing the harmonizing of the four postures
through eating less than four or five mouthfuls, so that
"comfort shall be mine"; thus he accepts alms. Indeed
it has been said :
" Hath he but eaten mouthfuls four or five,
Let him drink water : here is sure enough
Refreshment for a brother filled with zeal" *
 And so far the limiting of purpose and the path of the
mean should be understood to have been shown.
" Dwelling " means sleeping place and seat. Wherever
he sleeps, whether in a monastery or half-roofed monastery,
and so on, that is a sleeping place. Wherever he sits, seats
himself, that is a seat. The two taken together are called
" dwelling." " For the dispelling of the danger of the
weather and for the purpose of delighting in solitude "-
weather in the sense of causing trouble is " weather-danger."
In order that one may dispel the danger of the weather and
1 Psalms of the Brethren. 983. See also Expositor 511 /. for a similar
exposition of most of the terms lien- commented on.
40 TJie Path of Purity
delight in solitude, that unsuitable weather which causes
sickness of the body and distraction of mind should be dis-
pelled by acceptance of a dwelling: and it has been said that
it is " for the purpose of dispelling that weather and of well-
being in living alone." As, although by the warding off of
cold and so forth the dispelling of the danger of the weather
has been indicated, yet the covering of one's private parts in
the acceptance of a robe is a constant purpose, while the others
(cold and heat) are so only at times, so here also this has been
said concerning the constant dispelling of danger from the
weather. Or, this weather as described already is just " the
weather." And "danger" is twofold: obvious danger and
hidden danger. Of the two, obvious danger is lions and
tigers, and so on; hidden danger is lust, hate, and so on. They
may cause trouble to one seated in an open yard, at the foot
of a tree, and so on, by there being no guarded door and by
seeing unsuitable objects, and so on. The brother who accepts
a dwelling, knowing and reflecting that there such dangers
cannot cause him trouble, is to be understood as accepting
it after wise reflection, for the purpose of dispelling danger
from the weather.
In " the requisite of medicine for the sick," ' for ' is in the
sense of counteracting disease: going against is the meaning.
It is a synonym for anything suitable. " Medicine " is
the work of a doctor, as being permitted by him. Medicine
which is for the sick is " medicine for the sick," said to be
anything used by a doctor, such as oil, honey, molasses, and so
forth, suitable for the sick. " Requisite " means a protec-
tion as in " surrounded by the seven requisites of a town," 1 and
so on; an ornament as in " the (Ariyan) chariot has the orna-
ment of purity, tJie axle of jhdna, the wheel of energy," 2  and
so on; a constituent as in " the monk should carry out whatever
are the factors of livelihood," 3 and so on. Here it is proper
to take it as constituent and protection. For that " medicine
for the sick " is protection of life, from its guarding it, giving
no opportunity for the production of life-destroying disease.
1 Anguttaraiv, 106. 2 >amyuttav,6. 3 Majjhima i, 108.
I. Exposition of Virtue 41
It is also a constituent of life because it is a means of pro-
longing life. Hence it is called " requisite." And so, being
medicine for the sick and a requisite, it is " requisite of medicine
for the sick " ; and whatever is suitable for the sick and per-
mitted by the doctor such as oil, honey, molasses, and so forth,
being requisite of medicine for the sick, is said to be the
constituent or protection of life. " Which have arisen "
means, which have been produced, have become, have been
born. In " connected with diseases," " disease " means
a disturbance of the elements, and leprosy, boils, pustules,
and so on, sprung therefrom. " Connected with disease "
means, because it arises from disease. In '' of feelings."
painful feelings, the immoral resultant feelings, are intended.
" For the freedom from the pain " of those feelings connected
with diseases means, in order to be free from the suffering;
that is, he accepts medicine until all that pain is removed.
Thus in brief this virtue, whose characteristic is judicious use
of the requisites, should be understood to be " connected
with the requisites." And the word- definition is: Because
beings come and go, and live enjoying robes and so forth,
relying on these, depending on these, therefore are they called
"requisites." "Connected with the requisites" means con-
nected with those requisites. Of this fourfold virtue "the
restraint according to the Patimokkha " is to be attained
by faith, for it is accomplished by faith, the enactment of the
three precepts being beyond the province of disciples, as is
shown by the Buddha's rejection of a request to enact these
precepts. Hence observing by faith completely the precepts
as enacted, one should be perfect in it (this fourfold restraint),
regardless even of life. For thus has it been said :
 " Be prudent, reverent ; guard thy virtue well,
As pheasant guards her egg or yak his tail,
Or as a son beloved, or one's sole eye."
And this also has been said, " So, king, my disciples do
not transgress even for the sake of life the precepts which I have
laid down for them" And in this sense are to be understood
the stories told of Elders bound by thieves in a forest.
42 The Path of Purity
It is said that in the Himalayan forest thieves bound an
Elder with black creepers, and made him lie down. And the
Elder, as he lay, increased his insight for seven days, and
attaining the fruition of never-returning, died there and was
reborn in the Brahma world.
Again, in Tambapaimi Isle thieves bound an Elder with
puti creepers and made him lie down. And when a jungle
fire came on he established insight before the creepers could
be cut, and died in the extinction of his corruptions. 1
Elder Abhaya, a reciter of the Digha Nikaya, coming
with five hundred brethren saw and cremated the Elder's
body and had a shrine built. Hence others of good family
Keeping the Patimokkha pure, let life
Be yielded up : forsake not virtue's law
Enacted by the Master of the world.
Even as Patimokkha-restraint is to be attained by faith,
so by mindfulness is restraint of the controlling faculties to
be attained; for this is accomplished by mindfulness, because
covetousness and so forth do not flow from controlling
faculties that are established by mindfulness. Hence, remem-
bering the Fire-sermon 2 preached in this way: "Brethren,
better were an iron wire heated, molten, burning, incan-
descent, aflame, than the faculty of sight grasping details
and signs in visible objects," and so on, one should attain it
well through checking, by means of unremitting mindfulness,
the seizure by the general appearance of visible objects, and so
forth, followed by covetousness and other evil states of con-
sciousness which proceed in the eye-door, and so forth. 
For 3 when it is not attained, virtue as Patimokkha-restraint
1 Samasisi i.e. the head of his corruptions is severed by the Path of
Sanctity when he died. His death being simultaneous with the
extinction of his corruptions, he is called jivitasamasisi. When one
adopts any of the four postures until sanctity is attained and dies in that
posture, one is called iriyapathasamasisi. When one is afflicted with
a disease, and attaining sanctity dies of that disease, one is called
2 Samyutta iv, 168. 3 Read asampadite hi.
I. Exposition of Virtue 43
also does not endure, does not last long, like corn which is not
well set round with a thickset hedge. And one is harassed by
those thieves, the corruptions, as a village with open gates by
robbers; and lust penetrates the mind, as rain penetrates a
house badly roofed. And this has been said:
" In sights, sounds, odours, tastes, things tangible,
Guard the controlling faculty : for these,
Finding an open and unguarded door,
Witt vex thee as a village vexed by thieves.
Even as rain enters an ill-roofed house,
Lust enters the uncultivated mind." l
But when this restraint of the controlling faculties is
attained, virtue as Patimokkha-restraint also endures, lasts
long, like corn well set round with a thickset hedge. And
one is not harassed by those thieves, the corruptions, as a
village, well closed by gates, is not harassed by robbers. And
lust does not penetrate the mind, as rain does not penetrate
a house well roofed. And this has been said:
" In sights, sounds, odours, tastes, things tangible,
Guard the controlling faculty : for these,
Finding in thee a closed, well-guarded door,
Will shun thee as a village shunned by thieves.
Rain cannot penetrate a well-roofed house,
Lust cannot penetrate a well-taught mind"*
But this is an extreme admonition. The mind, however, is
flighty. Hence restraint of the controlling faculties is to be
attained in repelling arisen lust by directing one's attention
to the foul, as it was done by the Elder Vangisa when he was
recently ordained.  It is said that seeing a woman,
lust arose in the Elder but recently ordained, as he was going
about for alms. Then he said to Elder Ananda :
" With sensual lust I burn, my mind aflame.
I pray thee, pity have, Gotama,
And tell me how I may extinguish it."
1 Dhammapada 13, 14.
44 The Path of Purity
The Elder replied:
" Through wrong perception is thy mind aflame
Pleasant appearances avoid, for they
Are full of lust, but cultivate the mind
In things unpleasant, that it may attain
To concentration and a single aim.
Things-in-the-making shalt thou see and know
Evil as other than thee, as not the self.
Slay the great lust. Burn not repeatedly." x
And the Elder, repelling his lust, went his way.
Further, a brother who is fulfilling restraint of the con-
trolling faculties, should be like the Elder Cittagutta, who
lived in the great Kurandaka cave, and like the Elder Maha-
mitta, who lived in the great Coraka monastery.
It is said that there was a beautiful painting of the Re-
nunciation of Seven Buddhas in the great Kurandaka cave.
And many of the brethren, wandering round the dwellings,
saw the painting, and said: " Sir, beautiful is the painting."
The Elder said, " Lads, I have lived in the cave for over sixty
years and I did not even know whether the painting existed
or not. Now I know to-day through you who possess eyes."
Thus it is said that for so long the Elder living there never
lifted his eyes and looked up. And at the cave-entrance
there was a great ironwood tree. But the Elder had never
looked up at it. It is said that he knew that it was in blossom
when each spring he saw the filaments that fell to the ground.
The king, hearing of the Elder's virtuous attainments, and
wishing to pay his respects, sent for him three times. And
when the Elder did not come he caused to be shut up the
breasts of the women in the village who were suckling infants,
and had his seal put to this order: "As long as the Elder
does not come, so long these infants must not suck milk."
 And the Elder, out of compassion for the infants, went
to the village. And the king heard of it, and saying to his
ministers, " Go, I say, and introduce the Elder; I will acquire
the virtues," had the Elder brought within the palace, paid
1 S. i, 188, which gives a different order of the lines; Th. i, 1223 /.
I. Exposition of Virtue 45
his respects, gave him his meal of food, and saying to him,
' ' Sir, to-day there is no opportunity. To-morrow I will
acquire the virtues," he took the Elder's bowl, accompanied
him a little distance, and having, together with the queen,
paid his respects, turned back. And the Elder said: "May
the king be happy !" whether it was the king that paid
respects or the queen. Thus seven days passed. And the
brethren said: "Sir, whether it was the king that paid
respects or the queen, why did you only say : ' May the king
be happy '? " The Elder replied : " Lads, I make no difference
as to the king or the queen." After seven days the king,
finding that the Elder was not happy there, let him go. The
Elder went back to the great Kurandaka cave, and at night
ascended to the promenade. And the deity that lived in
the ironwood tree stood holding a torch. Then the Elder's
subject of meditation became exceedingly pure and clear.
And the Elder was glad, saying to himself, " AVhy is my subject
of meditation so exceedingly clear to-day ?" And causing
the whole mountain to resound, he attained Sanctity imme-
diately after the middle watch. And even so should any other
son of good family desirous also of his own benefit,
Let not the eye wander like forest-ape,
Or trembling wood-deer, or affrighted child.
The eyes should be cast downward : they should look
The distance of a yoke : he shall not serve
The eye's dominion, like a restless ape."
A poisonous boil once arose on the mother of the Elder
Mahamitta. Her daughter also had been ordained among the
sisters. The mother said to her daughter: " Girl, go to thy
brother's presence. Tell him I am unwell, and bring medicine."
The daughter went and told him. The Elder said: " I do not
know how to gather medicinal roots, and so forth, and to
prepare medicine. But this medicine will I tell of : since I have
become monk I have never broken the controlling faculties
with a mind accompanied by greed and looked at a female
form. By the virtue of this  declaration of truth may
my mother be relieved. Go, recite this, and shampoo the lay-
46 The Path of Purity
sister's body." She went and related the matter, and did as
instructed. And in that moment the lay-sister's boil was
crushed and disappeared like a mass of foam. And she rose
and uttered these words of joy: "If the supreme Buddha
were alive, with his hand like a variegated lattice, would he not
stroke the head of a brother like my son ?" Hence
Another well-born youth having become
A monk 1 in the religion, he should stand,
Like Elder Mitta, in the wise restraint
Of the controlling faculties.
Purity of livelihood should be attained by energy as restraint
of the controlling faculties is attained by mindfulness : indeed
it is accomplished by energy, because a man of strenuous
energy abandons wrong livelihood. Therefore it is to be
attained by energetic alms-gathering and so forth, abandoning
wrong search and unfitting behaviour, and resorting to those
requisites which are clean in their acquirement, and avoiding
like poisonous snakes those that are impure in acquirement.
Of these, the requisites which a brother, who has not mastered
the ascetic practices has obtained from the Order, from a
chapter of the brethren, and from laymen who are pleased
with him on account of his religious preaching and so forth,
are to be known as clean in acquirement. Those obtained by
alms-gathering and so forth are exceedingly clean in acquire-
ment. Those which a brother who has mastered his ascetic
practices has obtained by alms-gathering, and so forth, and
by his regular observance of the ascetic practices, from those
laymen who are pleased with him because of his ascetic
merits, are to be known as clean in acquirement. The
observance of ascetic practice by one who, when putrid
sycamore and the four sweet stuffs are sent him for the
purpose of allaying a disease, eats only the portion of sycamore,
thinking: " My other fellow-monks will eat the four sweet-
stuffs," is " fitting behaviour." He, indeed, is called a
brother of the highest Ariyan race. Whatever robes and
1 Read pabbajitvana.
I. Exposition of Virtue 47
other requisites there are, a brother who is purifying his
livelihood should not make a sign, hint, roundabout talk, or
intimation regarding a robe or alms. But a sign, hint, or
roundabout talk regarding a dwelling may be made by one
who has not mastered his ascetic practices. Of these, 
when one who is preparing the ground for a dwelling is asked
by laymen: " Reverend Sir, what are you doing ? Who is
enabling you to do it?" a reply to this effect, "Nobody," or
any similar reply, is making a sign. " Lay-disciples, where
do you dwell ?" "In a graduated turret, sir ?" " Lay-
disciples, a graduated turret is not proper for the brethren." a
Such a dialogue, or any other speech to this effect, is giving
a hint. " The dwelling of the Order of brethren is cramped " :
such talk, or any other to that effect, is roundabout talk.
As regards medicine, all four ways are proper. But is it
proper or not proper to use the medicine obtained in these
four ways when the disease has been allayed ? The Vinaya
scholars say it is proper because the Blessed One has allowed
it. But the Suttanta scholars say that it is not proper because
though there is no offence, yet the life of austerity is spoilt.
Whoso, however, though permitted by the Blessed One, does
not make sign, hint, roundabout talk, intimation, but avoiding
them by virtue of his merits such as contentment, and so forth,
when a mortal disease arises, accepts whatever requisites
are forthcoming, is called, " one who leads an ideally simple
life," like Sariputta the Elder.
It is told that that senior monk 2 was at one time living
with the Elder Mahamoggallana developing the practice of
solitude in a certain forest. To him one day there arose a
wind-disease in the stomach, causing great pain. Late in the
evening the Elder Mahamoggallana went to attend on the
senior, and seeing him lying down, enquired concerning the
matter, saying: " Brother, on former occasions how did you get
comfort?" The Elder replied: "Brother, when I was a
layman my mother mixed together butter, honey, sugar,
and so forth, and gave me undiluted milk-rice; and that gave
1 The punctuation of the Pali Text is incorrect.
3 Read ayasina/or yaama.
48 The Path of Purity
me comfort." And the senior said, " Be it so, brother. If
there be merit in me or in you, perhaps we shall get some
to-morrow." And a deva residing in a tree at the end of the
promenade heard this conversation, and thought: " To-morrow
I will produce rice for my lord." And immediately he went
to the family that supported the Elder,  entered into the
body of the eldest son, and caused him to suffer pain. And
he showed the means of cure and said to the relatives: 1 " If
you make ready such and such a preparation of rice for the
Elder to-morrow, I will release him." Saying, " You need
not have told us; we always give alms to the Elders," they
prepared the particular kind of rice on the next day. And the
Elder Mahamoggallana, coming early, said: "Brother, until
I return from alms-gathering stay here," and entered the
village. The men rose to meet the Elder, took his bowl,
and gave him the particular kind of rice, filling the bowl.
And the Elder showed signs of going. But they made him eat,
saying: " Eat, sir, we give more," and filled the bowl. The
Elder went and offered it, saying: " Now, brother Sariputta,
eat." The Elder, seeing it, thought: k ' The rice is very
tempting. How has it been obtained ?" And when he
knew its origin he said: " Brother Moggallana, the alms
is not fit to eat." And the senior did not entertain such a
thought as: " He does not eat the alms brought by such as I,"
but at the words, took hold of the bowl by the brim, and turned
it upside down, tilting it on one side. And upon the rice
being put on the ground, the Elder's illness disappeared.
Thenceforward it did not arise for forty-five years. And he
said to Mahamoggallana: " Brother, even though my entrails
were to come out and move on the ground, it would be im-
proper to eat rice that was obtained on account of vocal
intimation." And he uttered this exalted utterance:
Were I to eat the honey-rice obtained
Through use of revelation made by speech,
Then would my livelihood be full of blame.
1 Or, 'he said to the assembled relatives concerning the means of
cure,' reading niinittam saunipatite iiatake aha.
I. Exposition of Virtue 49
My bowels may gusli out and walk, yet ne'er
For life itself will I break livelihood.
My own mind I control, and the wrong search
Avoid, for I desire not the wrong search
Loathed by the Buddhas.
 And here also the story of the Elder Ambakhadaka-
mahatissa, who lived at Ciragumba, should be related. So,
under all circumstances,
The wise monk, faith-ordained, should purify
His livelihood, nor think of the wrong search.
And virtue connected with the requisites should be attained
by wisdom, as purity of livelihood is attained by energy; for
it is accomplished by wisdom, the wise man being able to see
the evils and the advantages in the requisites. Hence it is
to be attained by abandoning greediness for the requisites
obtained righteously and justly, and using them only after
reflection and with wisdom, according to the rule already
Here reflection is twofold: as practised at the time of
obtaining the requisites, and as practised at the time of using
them. Indeed it is using them blamelessly when one uses
deposited robes, and so forth, subsequent to reflection upon
the elements and upon loathsomeness at the time when they
are got, and likewise after reflection at the time when they are
used. The latter case furnishes the conclusive decision, for
one may use them in four ways: as a theft, as a debt, as an
inheritance, and like a master. Of these, a wicked person
who uses them sitting in the midst of the Order is using them
as a theft. A virtuous person who uses them without reflec-
tion uses them as a debt. Hence one should reflect every time
the robe is used, and at every morsel of alms received. If one
is not able to do this, then one should reflect four times,
three times, twice, or once a day, before and after the meal,
in the first, middle, and last watches of the night. 1 If dawn
1 Supply ekasmiih divase catukkhattum tikkhattum dvikkhattum
sakim yeva va paccavekkhitabbam, after yamesu.
50 The Path of Purity
comes before lie has reflected he stands in the position of one
using them as a debt.
One should also reflect every time one makes use of a
dwelling. And in accepting and using medicine also, it is
proper to cherish mindfulness. This being so, there is offence
if one is mindful in accepting, and is not mindful in using the
requisites. But there is no ofience if one is mindful in using,
after being unmindful in accepting them. For purity is
fourfold: admonition-purity, restraint-purity, search-purity,
and reflection-purity. Of these, admonition-purity  is
virtue as restraint according to the Patimokkha, which virtue
is indeed called admonition-purity because one becomes pure
through listening to an admonition. Restraint-purity is
virtue as restraint of the controlling faculties, which virtue
is indeed called restraint-purity because one becomes pure by
means of the restraint of mental resolve, saying: " I will not
act thus again." Search-purity is virtue as purity of liveli-
hood, which virtue is indeed called search-purity because one
is pure of search in obtaining the requisites righteously and
justly and abandoning wrong search. Reflection-purity is
virtue connected with the using of the requisites, which virtue
is indeed called reflection-purity because one becomes pure by
reflection as already described. On this account it has been
said that there is no ofience if one is mindful in using, after
being unmindful in accepting them. 1
The using of the requisites by the seven probationers is
known as using them as an inheritance: for these seven are
sons of the Blessed One, and so, being heirs to the requisites
their father's property, they use them. What ! do they use the
requisites of the Blessed One, or the requisites of laymen ?
Though given by laymen, the requisites are the property of
the Blessed One, who has allowed them. Therefore it is to be
understood that they use the requisites of the Blessed One.
And on this point the Dhammadayada sutta 2 has been borne
1 This sentence is repeated from the previous page, and so should not
be marked in the Pali Text as ' Not traced.'
2 Majjhima i, 12.
I. Exposition of Virtue 51
The using of the requisites by saints purged of the intoxicants
is known as using them like a master. For saints, having passed
beyond the slavery of craving, use them like masters. Of
these four ways, the using them like a master, and as an
inheritance, is suitable for all ; not so the using them as a debt,
to say nothing of the using them as a theft. And that using
them after reflection by a virtuous person, which is opposed
to the using them as a debt, is also called the using them
like a man freed from debts. This is included in the using
them as an inheritance, because a virtuous man, being endowed
with the training in the higher virtue, is counted as a pro-
bationer. And because among these four ways the using them
like a master is the best, therefore a brother who aspires to
this should use them reflecting in accordance with the various
kinds of reflection already described, and should attain to
the virtue connected with them. So will he be a fulfiller
of duties. And this has been said :
 " Hearing the Law preached by the Blessed One,
The follower, who in wisdom doth excel,
Should not without reflection use his alms,
Dwelling, couch, seat, and water to remove
The dust from off his robe. The brother, like
A drop of water on a lotus leaf,
Is not attached to any of these things,
Alms, couch, and seat, and water to remove
The dust from off his robe. 1 Still mindful, he
Should of compassion know the mean in food,
Hard, savoury, soft, from donors duly got,
Like growth of flesh in an anointed wound.
Like eating in the desert a son's flesh,
Like lubricating axles, even so,
Should one eat food, never infatuate,
For preservation." 2
As regards the fulfilling of this virtue connected with
the requisites, the story of nephew Sangharakkhita the novice
1 Sutta Nipdta 391, 392. a cf. Samyutta ii, 98.
52 The Path of Purity
is to be told. For he rightly reflected and ate. As he has
" As I did eat the boiled and well-cooked rice
The spiritual adviser spake to me :
' Novice, burn not thy tongue through unrestraint !'
Hearing the spiritual adviser's words,
I suffered agitation. In that place
Remaining I attained to sanctity.
Full of intentions am I like full moon
Of fifteen days : extinct the intoxicants,
And re-becoming is not any more.
 Let him then who desireth loss of ill,
Think wisely and accept the requisites."
So it is fourfold by way of virtue as restraint according to
the Patimokkha, and so forth.
Thus is the particular discourse on the Fourfold Purity
(v) In the first pentad of the Fivefold Portion (p. 13) what
is to be understood as the meaning is, that these are precepts
for the unordained, and so forth. For this has been said
in the Patisambhida: 1
" What are the limited precepts of purity? They are the
limited precepts of the unordained. What are the unlimited
precepts of purity? They are the unlimited precepts of the
ordained. What are the completed precepts of purity ? They
are those of good average men, who are applying themselves to the
state that is moral, who are fulfilling up to the limit the states
for probationers, and who have sacrificed their lives regardless
of body and life. What are the precepts of purity not miscon-
strued ? They are those of the seven probationers. What are
the tranquillized precepts of purity? They are those of the
Tathagata's disciples who are purged of the intoxicants, silent
Buddhas, Tathdgatas, saints, supreme Buddhas." Of these,
the precepts for the unordained, as being limited in number,
1 i, 42 /.
I. Exposition of Virtue 53
are to be known as "the limited precepts of purity." For
Nine thousand koti's, 1 nine score koti's more,
And fifty hundred thousand, and again
Thirty-six (thousand) are the precepts given
In the Vinaya Pitaka by Him,
The perfect Buddha, and in order shown
By the brief rule.
Thus, though there is a limit in number,  yet these are
said to be " unlimited precepts of purity," referring to the fact
that one observes them without remainder, and that their
limit as measured by the standard of gain, pomp, relatives,
limbs, life lies out of sight, like the precepts kept by the
Elder Ambakhadakamahatissa, who lived at Ciragumba.
Like that senior, so :
Wealth should be given up for a noble limb,
One should give up a limb to save a life.
A man should give up limb, wealth, life, and all
To recollect the Law.
Not giving up his recollection (of the behaviour) of good
men though his life was in doubt, he did not transgress the
precepts, and attained Sanctity mounted on the back of a
lay disciple through the unlimited precepts of purity. As
has been said:
" Not father, mother, kinsman, relative,
This boon he does theefor thy virtuousness.
Producing agitation, pondering
With wisdom, thou, being mounted on his back,
Hast unto Sanctity attained."
The precepts of good average men from ordination are
free from the dirt (of corruptions), as soon as consciousness
is produced being exceedingly pure like a well-burnished gem
and well-wrought gold, and are the proximate cause of
Sanctity. Hence the " completed precepts of purity," like
those kept by the Elders Saiigharakkhita, uncle and nephew.
1 koti ten millions.
54 The Path of Purity
It is said that the Order of brethren asked Mahasangharak-
khita the Elder, over sixty years old, on his deathbed, about
his transcendental attainment. The Elder said: " I have no
transcendental state in me." Then a young brother who
ministered to him said": " Sir, men have assembled from a
circuit of twelve yojanas saying that you have entered complete
Nibbana. And the people will feel regretful at your death
as an average man." " Lad, I never established insight
with a view to seeing the Blessed Metteyya.  Therefore
raise me and give me opportunity." And the brother raised
the Elder and went out. And the Elder, as soon as he went,
attained Sanctity, and gave intimation by snapping his
fingers. The Order assembled and said: " Sir, dying at such
a death-time you have done a difficult thing in attaining the
transcendental state." " Friends, this was not difficult to
do. But I will tell you what is difficult. Friends, since I
became monk, deed of mine done without mindfulness,
without understanding, I do not see." His nephew also
attained Sanctity after fifty years.
If one have little learning, and withal
No concentration in his doing, men
Will blame him both in learning and in deeds.
If one have little learning, and withal
Much concentration in his doing, men
Will praise his deeds, his learning not complete.
And if one have much learning, and withal
No concentration in his doing, men
Will blame his deeds, his learning being complete.
And if one have much learning, and withal
Much concentration in his doing, men
Witt praise him both in learning and in deeds.
The Buddha's deeply learned follower
Is bearer of the law. And he is wise
And, as the gold of Jambu, without blame.
Devas praise him, yea, Brahma praiseth him. 1
1 Anguttara ii, 7.
I. Exposition of Virtue 55
The precepts of probationers from not being misconstrued
by way of views, or those precepts which are not misconstrued
by way of the lust of average men, are to be known as "precepts
of purity not misconstrued," like those of the Elder Tissa, son
of Kutumbiya. For that senior, desirous of establishing
himself in Sanctity through such precepts, said to his enemies :
" Breaking both legs I will convince you. Yea,
I loathe, I am ashamed of death in lust."
 So thought I, wisely pondering, and attained
To sanctity what time the dawn arose.
Another Elder also, being afflicted with disease, was
unable to feed himself with his hands, and was wallowing
and rolling about in his own urine and excrement. Seeing
him, a certain young man said: " Alas, how painful are your
life complexes !" The Elder said to him: " Lad, if I die now
I shall get the bliss of heaven. There is no doubt about
that. But the bliss obtained by breaking this virtue would
be like the state of layman brought about by renouncing the
precepts. I shall die even together with my virtue." And
contemplating that disease as he lay there, he attained
Sanctity and gave explanation to the Order of brethren in
" A sickness falls upon me. The disease
Brings sharp pain and corruption. Very soon
This body will dry up even as a flower
Wrapped in hot dust. This ailing, putrid corpse,
Called loveable, being unloveable,
Fie on it ! impure thing that men deem pure,
Full of all loathsomenesses ; loveable
To the unseeing, this foul-smelling thing,
Corruptible, void of all purity,
Whereby intoxicated, dazed, the world
Destroys the way by which heaven is attained." l
The precepts of saints and so on are to be known as " tran-
quillized precepts of purity" from their tranquillizing of all
1 Jataka ii, 437.
56 The Path of Purity
suffering, and from their complete purity. This is purity of
precepts fivefold as limited precepts of purity and so forth.
In the second pentad (p. 13) what is to be understood as
the meaning is by way of removing life-taking and so on.
For it has been said in the Patisambhida: 1 " There are five
kinds of virtue: (1) the rejection of life-taking is virtue, (2) ab-
stention is virtue, (3) volition is virtue, (4) restraint is virtue,
(5) non-transgression is virtue. Virtue is the rejection of
theft . . . of wrong conduct in sensual pleasures . . . of false
speech, calumnious speech, harsh speech, frivolous talk, 
covetousness, ill-mil, wrong views. It is the rejection of sensual
desire by renunciation, ill-will by good-will, sloth and torpor by
the perception of light, flurry by non-distraction, doubt by
determination of states, ignorance by knowledge, discontent by
gladness, the hindrances by the first jhdna, initial and sustained
applications of mind by the second jhdna, rapture by the third
jhdna, ease and ill by the fourth jhdna, the perception of matter
by the attainment of the sphere of space, the perception of variety
by the perception of aversion, the perception of the sphere of
space by the attainment of the sphere of consciousness, the
perception of the sphere of consciousness by the attainment of
the sphere of nothingness, the perception of the sphere of nothing-
ness by the attainment of the sphere of neither perception nor
non-perception, the perception of permanence by retrospection
of impermanence, the perception of ease by retrospection of
ill, the perception of the soul by retrospection of soullessness,
delight by retrospection of disgust, passion by retrospection of
dispassion, origination by retrospection of cessation, clinging
by retrospection of forsaking, the perception of density by retrospec-
tion of loss, reinforcing by retrospection of decay, the perception
of constancy by retrospection of change, the sign by retrospection
of the signless, hankering by retrospection of the unhankered-
after, conviction by retrospection of emptiness, the clinging to
and conviction of essence by the higher wisdom of insight into
states, the conviction of delusion by the knowledge and discern-
ment of things as they really are, the conviction of attachment by
I. Exposition of Virtue 57
retrospection of tribulation, non-reflection by retrospection of
reflection, the conviction of fetters by retrospection of escape from
the round of births, the corruptions occupying the same place
with views by the path of Stream-winning, the gross corruptions
by the path of Once-returning, the subtle corruptions by the
path of Never-returning, all corruptions by the path of Sanc-
tity; virtue is abstention, volition, restraint, non-trans-
gression in regard to all these things. Such kinds of virtue
conduce to absence of mental remorse, to gladness, rapture,
tranquillity, joy, practice, culture, development, adornment,
requisites (of concentration), fulness, fulfilment, certain disgust,
dispassion, cessation, quiet, higher knowledge, perfect knowledge,
And herein, other than the not allowing life-taking, and so
forth, described above to arise, there is no state whatever that
is called " rejection." And because the different rejections
are  the support, in the sense of basis, and also owing to
their not shaking, the right placing of the different moral
states, therefore it has been said previously to be virtue in the
sense of being virtuous, already mentioned as supporting and
right placing (p. 9). The other four states are mentioned
with reference to the procedure and existence of mind as
abstaining from this and that, as refraining from this and that,
as volition associated with both (abstaining and refraining),
and as non-transgression on the part of one who does not
transgress this and that. And their being virtue has been
mentioned previously. Thus it is fivefold as rejection and
So far this is the end of the answers to the questions: What
is virtue ? In what sense is it virtue ? What are its charac-
teristics, its essence, its manifestation, its proximate cause ?
What are its advantages ? How many kinds of it are there ?
6. W^hat is its corruption ? 7. What its purification ?
In what has been said as " What is its corruption ? and
what its purification ?" we say that the state of virtue being
broken and so forth is its corruption; that its state of being
unbroken and so forth is its purification. And that state of
58 The Path of Purity
being broken and so forth is counted as its breaking con-
ditioned by gain, pomp, and so on, and the sevenfold associa-
tion with sexual feelings. For a man whose precepts in
the group of the seven offences are broken either at the out-
set or conclusion, is known as having broken virtue, like a
garment frayed at the edges. And whoso has them broken
in the middle is known as having riddled virtue, like a garment
with holes in the middle. And whoso has two or three of
them broken in a series is known as having streaked virtue,
like a cow the colour of whose body is one or the other among
black and red colours and so on mixed with other dissimilar
colours, either on the back or on the belly. And whoso has
them broken at different stages is known as having spotted
virtue, like a cow variegated by dissimilar colours and spots
at intervals. And so the state of being broken and so on is
due to breaking conditioned by gain and so forth.
And this is by way of the sevenfold association with sexual
feelings. For the Blessed One has said : J
" Brahmin, here a z monk or a brahmin is pledged to be chaste
and does not actually  enjoy a woman, but he likes to have
her rub, chafe, bathe, or massage him ; he is pleased with it,
desires it, takes delight in it. This, brahmin, is being broken,
riddled, streaked, spotted in respect of the holy life. And he,
brahmin, is said to practise impure chastity, and to be asso-
ciated with the fetter of sexual feelings. And I say that he is
not freed from birth, old age, death . . . ill. Again, brahmin,
here a monk or a brahmin is pledged to be chaste and does not
actually enjoy a woman, and does not like to have her rub, chafe,
bathe or massage him, but he likes to jest, play, and sport with her ;
he is pleased with it. . . . And I say that he is not freed
from birth, old age, death . . . ill. Again, brahmin, here
a monk or a brahmin is pledged to be chaste and does not actually
enjoy a woman, and does not like to have her rub . . . to jest,
play and sport with her, but he likes to stare and look at her ;
lie is pleased with it. . . . And I say that he is not freed from
birth, old age, death . . . ill. Again, brahmin, here a monk
1 Anguttara iv, 54. - Read ekacco.
I. Exposition of Virtue 59
or a brahmin is pledged to be chaste and does not actually enjoy
a woman, and does not like to have her rub . . . to jest . . .
to stare and look at her, but he likes to listen to her voice, when
she laughs, talks, sings, or cries across a wall or fence ; he is
pleased with it. . . . And I say that he is not freed from birth,
old age, death . . . ill. Again, brahmin, here a monk or a
brahmin is pledged to be chaste and does not actually enjoy a
woman, and does not like to have her rub . . . to jest . . .
stare . . . listen to her voice . . . but he likes to think about
his former laughs, talks, sportings with her ; he is pleased with
it. ... And I say that he is not freed from birth, -old age,
death . . . ill. Again, brahmin, here a monk or a brahmin
is pledged to be chaste and does not actually enjoy a woman,
and does not like to have her rub, . . . to jest . . . stare . . .
listen to her voice . . . think about his former laughs . . . 
but he likes to see a householder or his son enjoying fully the
pleasures of sense ; he is pleased with it. . . . And I say that
he is not freed from birth, old age, death . . . ill. Again,
brahmin, here a monk or a brahmin is pledged to be chaste and
does not actually enjoy a woman, and does not like to have
her rub . . . jest . . . stare . . . listen . . . think . . . see a
householder . . . but he likes to practise the holy life in the
hope of attaining to a celestial abode, saying, ' By this virtue,
vow, austerity, or chastity, I shall become a deva, or one of the
devas ; he is pleased with it, desires it, takes delight in it. This,
brahmin, is being broken, riddled, streaked, spotted as regards
the holy life.' "
Thus the state of being broken, and so forth, should be
understood to be counted as its breaking conditioned by
gain and so forth, and the sevenfold association with sexual
And the state of being unbroken, and so on, is considered
as the not breaking of all the precepts, the atoning for those
to be atoned, the absence 1 of the fetter of the sevenfold sexual
feelings, the not producing of such evil states as anger, hatred,
hypocrisy, ridicule, envy, meanness, wile, craft, stiffness,
1 Read bhavena cw pzrt of the preceding compound.
60 The Path of Purity
clamour, conceit, excessive conceit, intoxication, negligence;
and the producing of such qualities as moderation of desires,
contentment, simple life. Indeed those virtues which have
not been broken for the sake of gain and so forth, or which
have been atoned for even though they may have been broken
through the fault of negligence, and which have not been
oppressed by the fetter of sexual feelings and anger, hatred,
or other evil states, are all said to be unbroken, unriddled,
unstreaked, unspotted. And they are ' liberating ' through
their bringing about liberation ; ' praised by the wise ' through
their being praised by the wise; ' not misconstrued ' through
being not misconstrued by craving and views; and they are
conducive to concentration since they conduce either to
access concentration or ecstatic concentration. Hence their
state of being unbroken, and so on, is to be known as their
And that purification is fulfilled in two ways : by seeing the
evils of the depravity of virtue, and by seeing the advantages
of the fulfilment of virtue.  Of these, the evils of the
depravity of virtue should be understood according to the
Sutta which begins: " Brethren, five are the evils of depravity
of the virtue of a wicked man." x
Moreover, a wicked person, on account of his wickedness,
is not liked by devas and men; is not admonished by his
fellow-monks; is miserable amidst the scoffings at his wicked-
ness; feels remorse amidst the praises of the virtuous; is ill
favoured like a hempen garment on account of his wickedness ;
is in touch with pain inasmuch as those who follow his views
bear the pains of the states of woe for a long time; is of little
worth inasmuch as he does not produce much fruit to those
whose giftsr he accepts ; is difficult of purification like a pit of
excrement that has been collecting many years; is outside
of both (the pleasures of man and of monk) like a vile creeper ;
not a monk though pledged to be one, he is as a donkey that
follows a herd of cattle; he is ever alarmed like an enemy
of all men; is not worthy to live with, like some dead body;
1 Anguttara iii, 252.
I. Exposition of Virtue 61
is not worthy to be reverenced by his fellow-monks, even
though he may be endowed with such merits as learning,
any more than a cremation fire by brahmins; is unable to
attain distinction as a blind man is unable to see objects;
has no more desire for the Good Law than a grave-digger's
boy has for kingship ; is in pain though he thinks he is happy,
being a partaker of pain as is said in the Fire Discourse.
For in setting forth the visible result of Karma in all
its forms, and the exceeding severe pain which arises to evil
men with minds giddy with enjoyment of the five sensual
pleasures, and the pleasurable taste of the salutation and
reverence and so forth which result from these pleasures,
the which, merely in recollection, is able to produce heart
burning and the spitting of hot blood, the Blessed One has
" Brethren, do you see this great mass of fire, burning, ablaze,
" Yea, Lord."
" What do you think, brethren? Which is better: to sit
or lie down embracing this great mass of fire, burning, ablaze,
aflame ; or to sit or lie down embracing a princely maid, a brah-
min maid, or a maid of the householder class, with soft and
delicate hands and feet . ? "
" Lord, it is better to sit or lie down embracing a princely
maid and so on.  Painful it is, Lord, to sit or lie down
embracing a mass of fire."
" / tell you, brethren, I declare unto you, brethren, that it is
better for a wicked man of evil nature, of unclean and hesitating
conduct, of hidden actions, not a monk but pledged to be one,
not a holy man but pledged to be one, putrid within, flowing with
lust, offensive as refuse, to sit or lie down embracing a mass of
fire. . . . And why ? On this account, brethren, he may die
or suffer mortal pain, but on the dissolution of his body after
death, it will not make him suffer in states of woe, an evil destiny,
in a place of suffering, hell. But, brethren, that a wicked
man . . . should sit or lie down embracing a princely maid . . .
1 Ib. iv, 128 (correct the reference on p. 54, n. 8 of the Pali Text
62 The Path of Purity
that indeed is to his disadvantage and pain for a long time ;
and on the dissolution of the body after death, he goes to a state
of woe, to an evil destiny, a place of suffering, hell."
Having thus by the simile of the mass of fire made known
the pain caused by enjoying the five pleasures connected with
women, the Blessed One in the same way said : x
''Brethren, which do you think is better: that a strong man
should twist a strong hair-rope round the shins of both legs and
pull it, rubbing them, so that it cuts the skin, and then the thick
inner skin, and then the flesh, and then the nerves, and then the
bones, and having cut the bones, remains chafing the marrow ;
or that one (the wicked man) should acquiesce in the salutation
of great princes, great brahmins, or great householders ? Brethren,
which do you think is better: that a strong man should pierce
the breast with a sharp spear cleansed in oil ; or that one should
acquiesce in the obeisance of great princes, great brahmins,
or great householders ? Brethren, which do you think is better :
that a strong man should cover the body with a heated iron-plate,
burning, blazing, flaming ; or that one should use a robe, a gift
of faith from great princes, brahmins, or householders ? Brethren,
which do you think  is better: that a strong man should open
his mouth by means of heated iron tweezers, burning, blazing,
flaming, and throw into it a heated iron ball, burning, blazing,
flaming, so that it burns the lips, and also the mouth, tongue,
throat, stomach, and comes out from below together with the
intestines and the mesentery ; or that one should eat food, a gift
of faith from great princes, brahmins, or householders ? Brethren,
which do you think is better : that a strong man should seize one
by the head or shoulder and make one sit or lie down on a heated
iron bed or a chair, burning, blazing, flaming ; or that one should
use a bed or chair, a gift of faith from great princes, brahmins,
or householders? Brethren, which do you think is better:
that a strong man should seize one, feet upward and head down-
ward, and throw one into a heated iron pot, burning, blazing,
flaming, so that one is cooked giving rise to bubbles, and keeps
on now coming up, now going down, now going sideways ; or
i Ib. 129 /.
I. Exposition of Virtue 63
that one should use a dwelling, a gift of faith from great 'princes,
brahmins, or householders ?"
Thus under the similitudes of hair-rope, sharp spear,
iron plate, iron ball, iron bed, iron chair, iron pot, did the
Blessed One set forth the pain caused by the enjoyment of
salutation, obeisance, robe, food, bed, chair, dwelling (by the
Whence can there be true happiness to him
Of broken virtue, who doth not forsake
Sensual pleasure, yielding sharper pain
Than to embrace a mass of living fire ?
What happiness is there to him whose virtue
Hath been depraved, accepting salutation,
Suffering pain more galling than the pain
Of flesh tormented with strong ropes of hair ?
 What happiness to one who hath no virtue,
Accepting the obeisance of the faithful,
The root-condition of a sharper pain
Than pain of piercing spear ? Or what to him
Who knoweth no restraint in use of robes,
Wherefor he should be punished long in hell,
Being bound upon a blazing iron plate ?
Though sweet the food, to one who hath no virtue
It is as virulent poison : wheref or he
Shall mouth in hell a red-hot iron ball.
Though deemed a joy, the use of bed and chair
By one who hath no virtue is a pain.
Wherefore let him be racked long time on beds
And blazing chairs of iron. And to him
Whose virtue is perverted, what delight
To dwell within a house, a gift of faith ?
'Mid blazing iron vessels should he dwell.
Thus the world-Teacher blameth him for one
Of hesitating conduct, passionate,
Evil, putrid within, a rubbish heap.
Fie on the harmful and destructive life
Of him who knoweth not restraint, no monk,
64 The Path of Purity
But wearing a monk's guise and suffering
Austerities I 1 For what to him is life,
Avoided is by the virtuous and good,
As dung by those who would be beautified,
Or corpse. He is not freed from fears ; but freed
From every hope of bliss. Heaven's door is closed,
The way of hell he hath taken. Who but he
Is pitiable to the piteous ?
Perverted virtue many faults begets.
Thus by retrospective knowledge are to be understood
the evils of the depravity of virtue. And the advantages
of the fulfilment of virtue should be taken as the opposite
of the description here given (of the former).
 His virtue pure, his bearing bowl and robe
Pleasing, his ordination not unblessed.
As darkness enters not the sun, so fear
Of self -blame enters not that brother's heart
Whose virtue is purified. As in the sky
By the fulfilment of her rays the moon
Shines, in the wood of his austerities
By the fulfilment of his virtue shines
The brother. A good brother's bodily scent
Brings gladness even to gods : what need to tell
His scent of virtue ? For it overcomes
The attainment of all other kinds of scent:
Unchecked in all directions it is borne.
Deeds to the virtuous done, though they be few,
Are fruitful. Thus the virtuous dispense
Honour and reverence. The intoxicants
Of the conditioning present do not vex
The virtuous. The virtuous dig up
The root of future ills.
Whatever of attainment among men,
Whatever of prosperity there be
1 Read khatam attanam va hautassa for cbatam .
I. Exposition of Virtue 65
Among the gods, it is not hard to gain
By one fulfilled in virtue, if he will.
The attainment of Nibbana takes away
Burning untold : his mind seeks after it
Whose virtue is fulfilled. Thus should the wise
Show forth the benefits of virtue, root
Of all attainments, various, multiform.
And so the mind of him who shows them forth trembles at
the depravity of virtue, and inclines towards its fulfilment.
Therefore, seeing the evils of the depravity of virtue and
the advantages of the fulfilment of virtue as spoken of above,
one should purify virtue with due respect.
So far has virtue been explained in the Path of Purity set
forth under the heads of virtue, concentration, and wisdom
in the stanza, " The man discreet, on virtue planted firm."
Thus is ended the first chapter called The Exposition of
Virtue, in the Path of Purity, composed for the purpose of
gladdening good folk.
 CHAPTER II
EXPOSITION OF THE ASCETIC PRACTICES
Now virtue, the different kinds of which have been described,
is cleansed by means of such qualities as fewness of wishes,
contentment, and so on. Because a religious meditator who
has kept his virtue should, to be proficient in those qualities,
observe the ascetic practices, therefore we will begin the dis-
course on the ascetic practices, so that he (who observes them)
may have his virtue washed and purified by the waters of
such qualities, to wit, fewness of wishes, contentment, austerity
of life, solitude, loss of sin, strenuous energy, easiness of
support by others, and may have his vows fulfilled. And so
being absolutely pure in conduct through his qualities of
faultless virtue and ritual, he may be worthy of being estab-
lished in the three ancient orders of Ariyans and, fourthly, of
attaining to delight in culture.
Thirteen ascetic practices namely have been permitted by
the Blessed One to be kept by those well-born youths who have
put away worldly needs of the flesh and who, regardless of
body or life, are eager to make fitting progress. They are (1) the
refuse-ragman's practice, (2) three-rober's practice, (3) alms-
man's practice, (4) house-to-house-goer's practice, (5) one-
sessioner's practice, (6) bowl-fooder's practice, (7) afterfood-
refuser's practice, (8) forester's practice, (9) tree-rootman's.
practice, (10) open-spacer's practice, (11) burning-grounder's
practice, (12) any-bedder's practice, (13) sitting-man's practice.
As to the meaning, characteristic,
Observance and directions, grade and breach,
And eke the benefit of this and that,
As moral triad, as differentiated,
In groups and in detail decision shall
Be made on these ascetic practices.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 67
 Of these, as to the meaning:
1. A refuse-rag is one which is placed on a refuse-heap in
such places as a chariot-road, burning-ground, rubbish-heap,
and so on, and which, in the sense of covering-up is like the
heap of dust in them. Or, it gets to a loathsome state like
the dust hence refuse-rag; it reaches the loathsome state,
as, it has been said, refuse-rag practice means the wearing of a
refuse-rag so denned. One who has the habit of wearing it
is a refuse-ragman. The practice 1 of a refuse-ragman is
refuse-ragman's practice. Practice is said to mean reason.
Therefore this practice should be regarded as a synonym
for whatever observance by reason of which one becomes a
2. In the same way one who has the habit of wearing the
threefold robe namely, the shoulder-cloak, upper garment,
and the waist-cloth is a three-rober. The practice of a
three-rober is three-rober's practice.
3. Alms 2 is the falling of morsels as food for the flesh. It
is said to be the falling into the bowl of morsels of food given
by others. One who gathers alms and seeks it by approaching
this and that family is an almsman. Or, one whose duty it is
to roam for alms is an alms-roamer, where to roam is to
wander. Alms-roamer is the same as almsman. The practice
of such an one is almsman's practice.
4. A broken series (ddna) is said to be an interruption.
An unbroken series (apaddna) is without interruption;
uninterrupted is the meaning. With unbroken series is
sdpaddna (sa-apaddna), that is, from house to house without
interruption. One whose habit it is to go from one house
to another in an unbroken series is a house-to-house-goer,
sapadanacari, which is the same as sdpaddnacdrika. 3 The
practice of such an one is house-to-house-goer's practice.
5. One-session is food taken at one sitting. One who has
the habit of taking such food is a one-sessioner. The practice
of him is one-sessioner' s practice.
6. Bowl-food is food that falls into a single bowl, a second
1 Or, factor (angam). 2 Cf. above, p. 37.
3 I.e. with the addition of the suffix ka.
68 The Path of Purity
bowl being refused. Now the name bowl-food is given to the
acceptance of such food. One who has the habit of accepting
such food is a bowl-fooder. The practice of him is bowl-
f coder's practice.
7. Khalu is a particle with the meaning of denial. 
Food that is got later by one who refuses further offerings
while eating his first meal 1 is called afterfood. The partaking
of that afterfood is afterfood-taking. The name, afterfood,
is given to the taking of such food. One who has the habit of
taking afterfood is an afterfooder. Afterfood-refuser is one
who does not take afterfood. It is a name for one who by
virtue of his observance refuses additional food. But it is
said in the (Great) Commentary : ' Khalu is a bird which takes
a fruit in its beak, but when that falls down does not take
another fruit. Such is the man,' namely the afterfood-refuser.
The practice of such an one is afterfood-refuser's practice.
8. One who has the habit of dwelling in the forest is a
forester. The practice of such an one is forester's practice.
9. Tree-root is a dwelling at the foot of a tree. One who
has the habit of dwelling at such a place is a tree-rootman.
The practice of a tree-rootman is tree-rootman' s practice.
10. 11. And the same with the practices of the open-spacer
and the burning-grounder (or charnel -fielder).
12. Any-bed is any lodging that is allotted. It is a
synonym for a dwelling first allotted thus : ' This is available
for you.' One who has the habit of living in whatever place
is allotted is an any-bedder. The practice of such an one
is any-bedder' s practice.
13. A sitting-man is one whose habit it is to refuse to lie
down and to live sitting. The practice of such an one is
All of them are the practices (or factors) of the brother who
has shaken off the corruptions through the observance of this
and that practice; or, knowledge, which has acquired the
common name of shaking-ofE by reason of its shaking off the
corruptions, is the factor for (or reason of) these practices
1 The meaning of pavaritena sata is brought out in these two clauses.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 69
hence ascetic practices (or factors). Or, again, they are
ascetic because they shake off the hostile corruptions and they
are the factors of moral attainment hence ascetic practices.
So far is the decision to be known from the meaning. 1
And the will to observe is the characteristic of them all.
It is also said (in the Commentary) : ' It is the person that
observes. Mind and mental properties are the states by
which he observes. It is the ascetic practice that is the will
to observe. It is the physical basis that is rejected.' And
all of them have the slaying of worldly lust as function, the
freedom from such lust as manifestation, and such Ariyan states
as fewness of wishes and so on as proximate cause.  Thus
is the decision to be known from the characteristic and so on.
As to the five topics : their observance, directions, and others, 2
in the lifetime of the Blessed One all the ascetic practices
had to be observed under him ; after his decease, under the Chief
Disciple ; he being absent, under a saint purged of the intoxi-
cants and so on, under a never-returner a once-returner a
stream-winner a scholar of the three Pitakas a scholar of
two Pitakas a scholar of one Pitaka a scholar of one Nikaya
a scholar of one Agama 3 a teacher of commentaries a
master of the ascetic practices ; and in the absence of this last
person one should sweep the shrineyard, sit on the hams, and
observe the practices as though uttering them under the
tuition of the Supreme Buddha. But it behoves one to
observe them also by oneself. And here as regards fewness
of wishes by reason of the ascetic practices, the story of the
senior of the two brothers, Elders living on Mount Cetiya,
should be told. 4
This so far is the general discourse.
1 Dhutanga: from dhu: to shake off.
2 See the verse on p. 66.
3 Ekagamassa, meaning the same as the preceding, is omitted by the
4 He, it is said, was one who never lay down, but none knew of it.
One night as he sat on a bench his brother saw him by lightning- flash
and asked if he was practising the habit of the sitting-man. The Elder,
through fewness of wishes by reason of his ascetic practice, at once lay
down, but afterwards resumed the habit. Tikd.
70 The Path of Purity
1. The Refuse-Ragman's Practice.
Now we shall set forth, the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage of each in order.
And first, the refuse-ragman's practice is observed with one or
other of the two expressions : I refuse a robe given by a house-
holder; I observe the refuse-ragman's practice. So far this
is the (formula of) observance. And he who observes this
practice should pick up one or other of these rags, namely,
burning-ground-rag, shop-rag, street-rag, rubbish-heap-rag,
childbirth-rag, bath-rag, bathing-place-rag, after-return-rag,
burnt-rag, cattle-bitten-rag, ant-bitten-rag, mouse-gnawed-
rag, side-torn-rag, border- torn-rag, flag-rag, oblation-rag,
monk's-rag, consecration-rag, psychic-power-rag, road-rag,
wind-blown-rag, spirit-rag, ocean-rag. Tearing the rag he
should throw away the rotten parts and wash the good parts
and make a robe of them, and wear it after removing his old
As to these, burning-ground-rag is a rag cast away in the
burning-ground. Shop-rag is a rag thrown away at a shop-
door. Street-rag is a rag thrown into the street from a
window by those who desire merit. Rubbish-heap-rag is
 a rag thrown away at a rubbish-heap. Childbirth-rag
is a cloth thrown away after wiping the impurities of the
womb at childbirth. It is said that the mother of Tissa the
minister had the impurities of her womb wiped with a cloth
worth a hundred coins, and had it thrown on the Talaveli
Road 1 in the hope that refuse-ragmen would pick it up; and
the brethren took of it just enough for mending purposes. 2
Bath-rag is a rag which sick people 3 throw away as inauspicious
when, with the advice of exorcists, they have washed their
heads and bathed themselves. Bathing-place-rag is a cloth
thrown away at the river bathing-place. After-return-rag
is a cloth which men, on their return from the burning-ground,
throw away after their bath. Burnt-rag is a cloth partially
1 A road in Mahagama and in Anuradhapura.
2 So as to leave some for others.
3 Read nahapita, as in footnote.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 71
burnt by fire. That also men throw away. Cattle-bitten-
rag and the next four are obvious, i.e. rags bitten by cattle,
by white ants, by mice, torn at the side, and at the border.
Those also men throw away. As regards the flag-rag sailors
embark on a boat after planting a banner (at the port) ; one
may take it when they get out of sight. That banner planted
on the battlefield by soldiers one may also take, when both
armies have marched away. Oblation-rag is a cloth which
is wrapped round an anthill and offered to spirits. Monk's-
rag is a robe belonging to a brother. Consecration-rag is a
robe thrown away at the place where the king was anointed.
Psychic-power-rag is a robe made by a newly initiated brother. 1
Koad-rag is a cloth thrown away (or fallen) on the road.
But one should wait awhile before picking up that cloth,
which the owner dropped through inadvertence. Wind-
blown-rag is a cloth which, carried by the wind, has fallen
afar. That also one may take when the owner is not in sight.
Spirit-rag is a cloth given by devas, like the one given to the
Elder Anuruddha. 2 Ocean-rag is a cloth thrown up on to
the land by the waves of the sea. But that robe which is
given with the expression, ' we give it to the Order,' or that
which is obtained by monks who go to receive a gift of cloth
and alms is not a refuse-rag. As for a robe given by a
brother, that which is given out of regard for (the ragman's)
seniority, or that which is offered to (the inmates of) a
monastery is not a refuse-rag. That which is given out of
regard, not for the ragman's seniority (but, for the donor's
seniority), is a refuse-rag. And here also that robe which,
having been placed at a brother's feet by donors, is offered
by him into the ragman's hand, is indeed half pure. That also
which, having been given into the brother's hand, is by him
placed at (the ragman's) feet is half pure. But that which,
having been placed at the brother's feet, is by him given to
the ragman in the same way 3 is wholly pure.  That which,
having been placed in the (brother's) hand, is by him placed
1 Ehibhikkhus, i.e. ' Come, brother !' the oldest formula of admission
to the Order. Vinaya iv, 214.
2 Dhammapada Corny, ii, 173/. 3 I.e. by placing it at his feet.
72 The Path of Purity
in the (ragman's) hand is indeed not a robe. Thus knowing
the different kinds of refuse-rags the refuse-ragman should
wear his robe. These herein are the directions.
Now this is the grade. There are three ragmen: strict,
moderate, and soft. Of them he who picks up a rag thrown
away in the burning-ground 1 is a strict man. He who picks
up a rag 2 which was placed with the verbal expression : ' the
monk will pick it up ' is a moderate man. 3 He who accepts
a rag placed at his feet (by a monk) is a soft man. And the
ascetic practice of any of them is broken the moment he
accepts, through his own wish or through submission to a
request, a robe given by a householder. 4 This herein is the
Now these are the advantages: The state of his having
behaved in accordance with the spiritual guidance (of his
superior) as said thus: ' He is a monk having a refuse-rag as Ms
resource for clothing ;' 5 his establishment in the first order of
Ariyans; the absence of the trouble of looking after his robe;
the independence of livelihood; the absence of danger from
thieves; the absence of the lust for enjoyment; the fitness of
the rag as a monk's robe; the state of its being a requisite
praised by the Buddha as ' cheap, easy to get, and faultless ' ; 6
its delightfulness; the yielding of the fruit of fewness of wishes
and so forth; the development of right conduct; the institution
of a precedent for future generations of monks.
1 The particle yeva is used in a collective sense to include the other
2 I.e. any of the twenty-three kinds.
3 But the Visuddhimaggadipam inclines to the view that he is a
strict man because, in the case of the burning-ground, of the loath-
someness of the place and, in the case of rags gnawed by mice and so
forth or burnt by fire, of the discarded nature of the rags themselves.
4 ' But if he accepts it out of regard for the donor's faith and with the
intention of presenting it to another, as Ananda accepted a robe from
King Pasenadi for another, there is no breach.' Culatikd. ' It is
not proper for a monk to accept a robe which a layman has placed
at his feet requesting him to receive it as a special favour. But if
the donor goes off dropping it with indifference at the monk's feet
saying " He will not take it even when I offer it so," it is proper to pick
it up.' Ganthi.
5 Vinaya i, 58. 6 Anguttara ii, 26.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 73
As in the battle shines the mail-clad prince,
So in the routing of the Tempter's ranks
Shines the ascetic in a cast-off clout.
The cast-off clout that the world's Teacher wore,
Kejecting fairest robes of Kasi silk,
Who will not wear ? Let Brethren take delight
In the old clout befitting hermit ways,
Remembering their vows.
This so far is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the refuse-ragman's practice.
2. The Three-Rober's Practice.
Next comes the three-rober's practice observed with one
or other of the expressions: I refuse a fourth robe; 1 1 observe
the three-rober's practice.  He who observes this practice
should, on getting a new piece of cloth, put it by as long as he
cannot make it coarse, or cannot find one who knows how
to cut it, or lacks any of the articles such as a needle. There
is no fault in putting it by. But he should not put it by once
it is dyed. He would then become a thief of the ascetic
practice. These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here. When the time
for dyeing comes, the strict man, having first dyed either his
waist-cloth or upper garment, should wear the one he has dyed
and then dye the other. And having put on his upper garment
he should dye the shoulder-cloak. But he should not put on
the shoulder-cloak. This is his duty in a village-monastery.
But in his forest-abode he may wash both the garments
together and dye them. In so doing he should sit in a place
near enough for him to be able, in case he should see any one,
to drag the yellow robe and cover himself with it. For the
moderate man there is in the dyeing hall a yellow dyeing robe
which he should wear or put on and do the work of dyeing.
The soft man may wear or put on the robes which are for the
1 I.e. for the purpose of wearing either as an inner or outer garment.
It does not refer to a robe thrown over the shoulder, which is per-
missible. See below, p. 74, n. 2.
74 The Path of Purity
common use of the brethren and do the work of dyeing.
Even a bed-cover 1 there is proper for him, but he may not take
it about with him. Nor may he wear off and on a robe which
is for the common use of the brethren. To one who is observing
the three-rober's practice a yellow shoulder-cloth as a fourth
piece 2 is permitted. It must be one span in breadth and three
cubits 3 in length. But the moment a fourth garment is accepted
by these three men, the ascetic practice is broken. This herein
is the breach.
Now these are the advantages : The brother who is a three-
rober is contented with the body-protecting robe, therefore
he takes it about with him as a bird carries its wings. And
such advantages as these are attained : little need of tendance ;
the not having to treasure up clothes ; lightness in travelling ;
abandonment of the lust for extra robes; simplicity of life
through a limit being set for what is proper; the yielding of
fewness of wishes and so forth.
 The wise recluse, who wears the threefold robe,
Forsakes a craving for an extra cloak.
No other clothes he needs to treasure up ;
He knows what taste contented bliss bestows.
So he, the good recluse, who loves to roam
With his three robes, as flies the bird with wings,
Should note with joy the rule concerning robes.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the three-rober's practice.
3. The Almsman's Practice.
The almsman's practice also is observed with one or
other of the expressions: I refuse an excessive amount of food;
I observe the almsman's practice. He who observes this
practice should not accept these fourteen kinds of food,
namely, food offered to the Order as a whole, to one or more
particular monks, food given by invitation, by tickets, food
1 A shoulder-cloth (not usually worn as a garment) for self or another,
used as a bed- sheet in the monastery. Tlkd.
2 Sea note 1 (p. 73). 3 Read ti-hattham.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 75
given on a day of the waning or waxing of the month, on a
sacred day, on the first day of the moonlit fortnight, food given
to guests, to monks about to travel, to the sick, to those
who minister to the sick, food given in honour of a monastery,
at a principal house, food given by donors in turn. But if
donors do not use the expression ' Partake of food that has
been offered to the Order,' but say, ' The Order partakes of
food in our house; may you also partake of it,' it is proper
to accept such food. Food obtained from the Order and
distributed by tickets for purposes 1 other than the gratification
of fleshly needs, and food cooked in a monastery are also
permissible. These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here. Of them the
strict man accepts food brought both from in front and from
behind. He gives the bowl to the people who receive it out-
side their door. He also accepts food given after he has sat
down to eat in the dining-hall 2 after his almsround. But he
does not accept food (that has been promised) by sitting for
it the whole day long. The moderate man accepts food sitting
and waiting for it the whole day; but does not consent to a
meal for the morrow. The soft man consents to a meal for
the morrow and also for the day after. The latter two men
do not get the bliss of independent life; the strict man gets
it. Suppose there is (a sermon on) the lineage of the Ariyans
in a certain village. The strict man says to the other two:
' Friends, let us go to hear the Law.' One of them replies:
' Sir, I have been made to sit for a meal by such and such a
man;' and the other says : ' Sir, I have consented to to-morrow's
meal offered by a certain man.' Thus both of them fail to
hear the Law. But the strict man goes early for alms and
enjoys the taste of the Law.  The moment these three
men accept extra food, such as food for the Order and so on,
their ascetic practice is broken. This herein is the breach.
Now these are the advantages: The state of his having
behaved in accordance with the spiritual guidance (of his
superior) as said thus : ' He is a monk having morsels of alms
1 Such as medicinal purposes.
2 Asanasalayam bhunjanatthaya nisinne adds the Cu/af'ihl.
76 The Path of Purity
as his resource for food ; 51 establishment in the second order of
Ariyans; independence of livelihood; the state of the food
being a requisite praised by the Blessed One as ' cheap, easy
to get, and faultless ;' 2 the state of his having overcome idleness;
the purity of livelihood; the fulfilment of his probationary
conduct; the state of not being nourished by others; the doing
favour to the poor (donor); 3 rejection of conceit; checking of
the lust for tasty food; freedom from offence against the
precepts concerning a meal for several monks, a meal subse-
quent to the acceptance of a previous one, and personal
behaviour; conduct in conformity with few wishes and so
forth; development of right conduct; favour to future genera-
Contented with his lumps of alms,
And independent in his life,
The monk forsakes a lust for food,
And goes at will to any place.
His idleness he drives away;
His livelihood is purified.
And so the wise should ne'er despise
The going round to beg for alms.
A brother going on his begging round,
Supporting self, not others him the gods
Admire; for he is free from gain and fame.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the almsman's practice.
4. The House-to-House-Goer's Practice.
The practice of the house-to-house-goer also is observed
with one or other of the expressions: I set aside greedy be-
haviour in alms-gathering ; 5 I observe the house-to-house-
goer's practice. Standing at the village-gate he who observes
1 Vinaya i, 58. 2 Anguttara ii, 26.
3 Who is thus not put to the trouble of having to give much.
* In providing them with a precedent.
5 I.e. greediness shown in passing over houses from which one does
not expect to get food, and going to those houses which offer good food.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 77
this practice should see that there is no danger 1 he is likely to
meet with. If there be any such danger in the road or village
he should leave that place and go elsewhere. Whether it
be at the door of a house or on the road or in the village itself,
if he gets no alms there he should go away and not count that
place as a village. He should not forsake that place in which
he has obtained something (abas). The brother should enter
the village quite early, so that he may have time to leave any
place he finds unpleasant and go elsewhere.  If alms
be given him in his monastery, or men meeting him on the
road take his bowl and give alms, he should accept it. When
in his almsround he reaches a village, he should not go past it.
Whether he gets nothing or something from that village,
he should go from one village to another in order. These are
There are also three grades of men here. Of them the strict
man does not accept food offered before he reaches a house or
after he has left a house 2 or food given after he has sat down
to eat in the dining-hall on return from his almsround. He
gives up his bowl 3 at the donor's door. In this ascetic
practice there is indeed none like the Elder Mahakassapa;
the occasion on which he gave up his bowl is well known.
The moderate man accepts food offered either before he
reaches a house or after he has left a house, as well as food
that is brought after he has sat down to eat in the dining-hall
on return from his almsround. He also gives up his bowl at
the donor's door, but does not sit waiting for food that has been
promised. In this respect he is like the strict almsman. The
soft man sits waiting the whole day for food that has been
promised. The moment greedy behaviour arises in these
three men their ascetic practice is broken. This herein is
Now these are the advantages : The being ever fresh 4 in his
relations with the families; the being cool like the moon;
1 Such as an elephant, horse, and other animals.
2 Cf. the almsman's practice.
3 So that food may be put into it. * I.e. not familiar.
78 The Path of Purity
rejection of meanness for the families; impartial favour; 1
absence of disadvantages that arise to monks who eat together
with the families 2 ; non-acceptance of invitations; absence of
wish for a meal to be brought; conduct in conformity with few
wishes, and so on.
In coolness like the moon, and ever fresh,
And faultless in regard to families,
And free from meanness and partiality
This brother is a house-to-house-almsman.
A prudent man, who wishes here on earth
To lead an independent life, should look
With downcast eyes the distance of a yoke,
All greediness of conduct put away,
And go for alms from house to house.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the house-to-house-goer's
 5. The One-Sessioner' 's Practice.
The practice of the one-sessioner also is observed with one
or other of the expressions : I refuse to eat food at more than
one sitting; I observe the one-sessioner 's practice. He who
observes this practice should not sit at the place reserved
for the Elder in the dining-hall, but find such a suitable seat
as will be available for him. If, before he finishes his meal,
his teacher or preceptor arrives, he should rise and pay his
respects. But Tipitaka-CFilabhaya the Elder said : ' He should
keep his seat or his meal. 3 He who has not finished eating
may rise and pay his respects, but he may not resume the
meal.' These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here: The strict man
will not accept more, once he has laid his hand on the food,
be it little or much. If men bring butter and so forth saying,
1 To rich and poor alike.
2 Or, ' the absence of evil or fault such as familiarity with the donors'
3 I.e. keep his seat and finish his meal; or rise up if he has not com-
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 79
' The Elder has not eaten anything,' he may accept them as
medicine, not as food. The moderate man will accept more,
as long as he has not finished the food in the bowl ; he is indeed
known as ' limited by food.' The soft man will eat as long
as he does not rise up. Inasmuch as he may eat until he
takes the bowl to wash it, he is limited by the water with which
he washes the bowl. And because he may eat until he rises
up he is limited by his sitting. But the moment these three
men eat food at more than one sitting, the ascetic practice
is broken. This herein is the breach.
And these are the advantages: Freedom from sickness*
freedom from bodily ailment, lightness in movement, strength,
comfort, the not committing of ofEence through his refusal of
excessive food, the repelling of craving for tasty food, conduct
in conformity with few wishes, and so on.
Diseases caused by eating do not harm
The monk who at one sitting eats his food.
Not greedy for sweet tastes he does not let
His work slacken. A monk should gladly take
Delight in eating so his food, which makes
For comfortableness and is the source
Of joy in purity and simple life.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage in the one-sessioner's practice.
 6. The Bowl-Fooder's Practice.
The practice of the bowl-f ooder also is observed with one or
other of the expressions: I refuse a second bowl; I observe
the bowl-fooder's practice. When at the time of drinking
rice-gruel curry is offered in a vessel, he who observes this
practice should first eat the curry or drink the rice-gruel. The
rice-gruel would become loathsome, if he were to put into it 1
the curry, in which there might be rotted fish 2 and so on.
And he should eat nothing that is loathsome. Therefore
concerning such curry the above statement was made. But
Read yaguyam. * Read maccha
80 The Path of Purity
any honey, sugar, and so forth, which are not loathsome may
be put into the rice-gruel. He should take just enough for
his consumption. He should eat green vegetables, holding
them in his hand, or else put them into the bowl. Any other
tree-leaves are not permitted, since he has refused a second
vessel. These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here. Except in chewing
sugar-cane the strict man may not throw away 1 even such
things as he cannot eat. He may not eat separating the lumps
of rice, fish, meat, and cakes. 2 The moderate man may eat
separating them with one hand; he is known as a ' hand-
ascetic.' And the soft man is known as a ' bowl-ascetic.'
Whatever he can put into the bowl he may separate with his
hand or teeth, and eat. The moment these three men accept
a second vessel, the ascetic practice is broken. This herein
is the breach.
And these are the advantages: The repelling of a craving
for taste of various kinds, the repelling of desire for taste
in more than one bowl, the seeing of the purpose and measure
of food, the absence of the trouble of carrying various dishes
and so forth, undistracted eating, conduct in conformity with
few wishes, and so forth.
The bowl-food-eater, disciplined enough
To delve the roots of taste-desire, with eyes 3
Of downward gaze, is not distracted by
More dishes than his own. With joyful heart
He bears contentedness as though it were
A thing that's visible. Who else, forsooth,
Can eat his food as does the bowl-foodman ?
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage in the bowl-f coder's practice.
1 Into a second bowl, which, even for the purpose of receiving such
things (like fish-bone, grain, and so on), as one does not eat, ia not
2 Lest he should relish the individual taste of each.
3 Read locano.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 81
 7. The Afterfood-Ref user's Practice.
The practice of the afterfood-refuser also is observed with
one or other of the expressions : I refuse extra food ; I observe
the afterfood-ref user's practice. Once he has made his vow
(pavdrand), he who observes this practice should not eat
any more food that may be offered. These are the direc-
There are also three grades of men here. Because his vow
applies not to the first almsfood but to the refusal of more
food while he is eating it, therefore the strict man who has made
his vow does not eat a second almsfood after his first. The
moderate man finishes the meal on which he has made his
vow. But the soft man eats as long as he does not rise up.
The moment these three men accept and eat after their vow
any more food that may be offered, the ascetic practice is
broken. This herein is the breach.
And these are the advantages: Distance from the offence as
to extra food, absence of a full stomach, absence of absorption
in the fleshly needs, absence of search for fresh food, conduct
in conformity with few wishes, and so on.
The wise ascetic, who refuses food
Additional, knows not the pain of search;
He makes no storage of his fleshly needs;
He suffers not his stomach to be full.
To shake off faults ascetics should observe
This practice, which produces qualities
Such as increased contentment, and is praised
By Him the Happy One.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage in the afterfood-refuser's practice.
8. The Forester's Practice.
The practice of the forester also is observed with one or
other of the expressions: I refuse a village-dwelling; I observe
the forester's practice. He who observes this practice should
leave a village-dwelling and be in the forest at dawn. Here
82 The Path of Purity
a village-dwelling is a (dwelling in a) village including its
precincts. A village may consist of one or more houses, may
or may not have a wall, may be inhabited or uninhabited. 1
Even a caravan that is encamping for more than four months
is a village.  Supposing a walled village has two gate-
pillars like those of Anuradhapura, an outward stonethrow
of a strong man of middle height from between the two pillars
is village precinct. The Vinaya scholars decide the boundary
by taking the characteristic (standard) throw to be the fall of a
stone, thrown by young men stretching out their arms in a
display of strength. But the Suttanta scholars say that the
boundary is the fall of a stone thrown to drive away a crow.
In a village which has no wall a woman, standing at the door
of the house which is outermost of all, throws water from a jar;
the place where the water falls is house-precinct; whence a
stonethrow in the way described above is a village. Another
stonethrow (from the village) is the village precinct. And in
the Vinaya explanation a forest is said to be all that is outside
of village and village-precinct. In the Abhidhamma explana-
tion 2 it is forest when one goes out by the gate pillars. But
regarding this ascetic practice in the Suttanta explanation
this is the characteristic measure : a forest-dwelling is at least
500 bow-lengths (or fathoms) distant. That distance is to be
measured and fixed by means of a drawn standard bow 3 from
the gate pillars, if the village has a wall, or from the first stone-
throw if the village has no wall, as far as the monastery-wall.
The Vinaya Commentaries say that if the monastery has
no wall, the limit of the measure is the first dwelling, dining
hall, permanent assembly hall, Tree of Wisdom or shrine,
provided these are far from the monastery, But the Majjhima
Commentary says that after fixing the precinct of the monastery
as in the case of the village 4 the measure is to be made between
the two stonethrows. 5 This is the measure to be taken here.
1 Or, inhabited by unhuman beings. On the definitions here see
Vinaya iii, 46.
2 Vibhanga 251. 3 Lit. ' master-bow.'
4 I.e. a strone-throw to drive away a crow.
6 One to fix the monastery-precinct and the other the village-
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 83
If the village be so near that those in the monastery could
hear the voices of the villagers, and yet it could not be reached
by a straight path on account of such obstacles as hills,
rivers, and so on, and if the natural means of approach be to
cross by a boat, then the measure of 500 bow-lengths is to be
taken by that (watery) path. Whosoever blocks the way here
and there, so that the requisite measure may be fulfilled, is
a thief of the ascetic practice.
And if the forester's preceptor or teacher be ill and the
necessary medicine cannot be obtained in the forest,  he
may then take the sick man to a village-dwelling and look after
him. But he should depart in good time, so that at dawn
he may be in a place which fulfils the requirements of his
If at dawn their illness increases, he should do his duty by
them and pay no heed to the purity of his ascetic practice.
These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here : The strict man
should find the dawn break in the forest at all times. The
moderate man is allowed to live in the village for the four
months of rain; the soft man for the four months of winter
as well. The ascetic practice is not broken, if the dawn
breaks while these three men, having come from the forest
during their terms of forest- life, listen to the Law in a village-
dwelling. It is not broken though the dawn may break, while
they are still on their way back from the sermon. But if after
the preacher has risen up they go to sleep saying ' We will lie
down awhile and then depart,' and the dawn breaks, or if out
of enjoyment they let the day dawn upon them in the village-
dwelling, then the ascetic practice is broken. This herein
is the breach.
And these are the advantages: The forester-brother who
attends to the perception of the forest can acquire concentra-
tion not yet acquired or keep that which has been acquired.
The teacher also is pleased with him, as He has said : ' Ndgita,
I am pleased with the forest-life of that brother.' 1 Improper
Anguttara iii, 343.
84 The Path of Purity
objects and so forth do not distract the mind of him who lives
in a border-dwelling; he is free from fear; he puts away a
craving for life, enjoys the taste of the bliss of solitude; the
practices of the refuse-ragman and others are also agreeable
Secluded, solitary, delighting in
A border-dwelling, by his forest-life
The monk endears himself unto the Lord.
Alone in forest-life, he gets that bliss,
Whose taste even gods with Inda do not get.
The refuse-rag he wears as coat of mail;
The signs of other practices he wears
As weapons. 1 At the forest battle-ground
He conquers ere long Mara and his hosts.
So should the wise delight in forest-life.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the forester's practice.
 9. The Tree-Rootman's Practice.
The practice of the tree-rootman also is observed with one or
other of the expressions : I refuse a covered dwelling ; I observe
the tree-rootman's practice. He who observes this practice
should avoid these trees: a tree which grows on the border
between two countries, a sacred tree, a resinous tree, a fruit
tree, a tree on which bats live, a hollow tree, a tree growing
in the middle of a monastery. He should resort to a tree on
the oustkirt of a monastery. These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here : The strict man is
not allowed to resort to any tree he pleases and make a clearing
underneath it. He may dwell under a tree after removing
with bis foot the fallen leaves. The moderate man is allowed
to cause those who arrive at the tree to make a clearing. The
soft man may summon the monastery-lads and ask them to
make a clearing, to level it, to scatter sand on it, to make an
enclosure and to fix a door, and may dwell there. On a feast
1 Read yudho as part of the preceding compound.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 85
day the ascetic should not remain at the foot of the tree but
go to some other hidden place and sit down. The moment
these three men make a dwelling in a covered place, their
ascetic practice is broken. Reciters of the Anguttara Nikaya
say that it is broken the moment they consciously let the day
dawn upon them in a covered dwelling. This herein is the
Now these are the advantages : Attainment in accordance
with the third requisite as expressed in, ' A monk depending
on a dwelling at the foot of a tree ; ?1 the possession of requisites
praised by the Blessed One thus, ' They are trifling, 2 easily
got, and faultless ;' 3 the production of the perception of im-
permanence by seeing the constant change in tender leaves j
the absence of meanness for a dwelling 4 and of delight in new
work, intercourse with tree-deities, conduct in conformity
with few wishes, and so forth.
Where is the lonely man's abode, extolled
By Buddha best of men as requisite,
And which is equal to the root of tree ?
The well-controlled man, who lives at such
A lonely place, protected by the gods,
Subdues all meanness for a dwelling-place.
 He sees the change that comes o'er tender leaves,
Which turn from deep red into indigo,
And fall as sere leaves to the ground. From this
He learns the lesson of impermanence.
Therefore the wise should not despise to dwell
In isolation at the foot of tree,
The Buddha's heritage and home of those,
Who take delight in culture of the mind.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the tree-rootman's practice.
1 Vinaya i, 58. 2 As regards care, duty, or tendance.
3 Anguttara ii, 26.
4 On the five kinds of meanness see Expositor 480.
86 The Path of Purity
10. The Open-Spacer's Practice.
The practice of the open-spacer also is observed with one or
other of the expressions: I refuse a roof as well as the root of
a tree; I observe the open-spacer's practice. He who observes
this practice may enter the sacred house either to listen to
the Law or to do the sacred duties. If the rain falls while he
is inside he should not go out in the rain but wait till it ceases.
He may enter the dining-hall or the fire-hall to do his duties.
He may invite the Elders and brethren in the dining-hall to
a meal. As an instructor (of the Pali) or as a pupil he may
enter a covered dwelling. He may cause to be brought inside
bedsteads and stools which are badly kept outside. If the rain
falls while he is going along carrying a requisite that belongs
to his seniors, he may enter a hall on the way. If he is not
carrying any such thing, he may not hasten with the intention
of entering the hall, but going with his ordinary steps he may
enter and remain till the rain ceases and then depart. These
are the directions which also apply to the tree-rootman.
There are also three grades of men here: The strict man
may not dwell depending on a tree, mountain, or house. He
should dwell beneath the open sky in a hut made of leaves.
The moderate man may dwell depending on trees, mountains,
or houses without entering them. For the soft man a cave not
covered with a roof, a pavilion of branches, a cloth-cover for
a chair, a hut in the field deserted by field-watchers and so
forth, are permissible. The moment these three men enter a
roof or beneath a tree to dwell there,  the ascetic practice
is broken. Reciters of the Anguttara Nikaya say that it is
broken the moment they consciously let the dawn break upon
them in such places. This herein is the breach.
Now these are the advantages : The cutting off of the nuisance
of an abode, the dispelling of sloth and torpor, worthiness of
the praise bestowed as, ' Like the deer the brethren live un-
trammelled in their walks, homeless, n freedom from attach -
1 Samyutta i, 199. Cf. Kindred Sayings I, 253, n. 3.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 87
ment, 1 the going (at will) in the four directions, conduct in
conformity with few wishes, and so forth.
As free in mind as is the antelope,
The brother lives an easy homeless life
Beneath the open sky lit by the moon,
A lamp that lights the vault of starry gems.
His torpid sloth he drives away and takes
Delight in culture ; presently he finds
The tasteful essence of his solitude.
Therefore the wise should take delight in life
Beneath the open sky.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage in the open-spacer's practice.
11. The Burning-Grounder's Practice.
The practice of the burning-grounder also is observed with
one or other of the expressions : I refuse (to dwell in) a place
that is not a burning-ground ; I observe the burning-grounder's
practice. He who observes this practice should not dwell in
a place which village-builders fix as burning-ground. For
when a dead body has not been burnt on it, the place is not
known as burning-ground. It is a burning-ground, though
it has been deserted for twelve years since a dead body
was burnt there. But he may not have there promenades
and pavilions and so forth built, bedsteads and stools arranged,
water and food brought, and live there teaching the Law.
This ascetic practice is indeed heavy. Therefore in order to
quell any danger that might arise he should tell the Elder of
the Order or one connected with the king, and live free from
negligence. In walking to and fro he should do so looking
with half-closed eyes at the burning of dead bodies.  In
going to the burning-ground also he should leave the main
road and go by a side path. He should note any object there
by daylight, so that it may not appear to him fearful at
night. Though unhuman beings may roam about uttering
loud cries, he should not throw anything to hit them. He
1 To houses and so forth.
88 The Path of Purity
should not pass a single day without going to the burning-
ground. Reciters of the Anguttara Nikaya say that after
spending the middle watch of the night at the burning-ground
he may depart in the last watch. He should not partake of
such foodstuffs as sesjanium, flour, peas, rice, fish, meat,
milk, oil, molasses, that are dear to unhuman beings, nor
take them to the houses of donors. These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here: The strict man
should dwell where there are continual burning, continual
smell of dead bodies, and continual weeping. The moderate
man may dwell where there is one of these present. The
soft man may dwell in a place which just fulfils the require-
ments of a burning-ground as given above. When these
three men make their abode in a place which is not burning-
ground, their ascetic practice is broken. This herein is the
Now these are the advantages : Attainment of mindfulness
regarding death, a life free from negligence, acquirement of
the outward sign of the foul, dispelling of sensual lust, the
perpetual seeing of the intrinsic nature of the body, growth of
agitation, rejection of the pride of health, overcoming of fear
and fright, respect paid by unhuman beings, conduct in
conformity with few wishes, and so forth.
The faults of negligence, even while he sleeps,
Touch not the burning-ground-recluse, such is
The power of his mindfulness of death.
Because so many corpses he beholds,
His mind is freed from lust's dominion.
Great agitation seizes him and leaves
Him without pride. He makes a right effort
To win tranquillity. Therefore with heart
Inclined unto Nibbana follow hard
The burning-grounder's practice, which bestows
Such manifold merits and qualities.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage in the burning-grounder's practice.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 89
 12. The Any-Bedder's Practice.
The practice of the any-bedder also is observed with one
or other of the expressions: I set aside greedy behaviour
regarding dwellings; I observe the any-bedder's practice.
He who observes this practice should be content with whatever
dwelling is allotted to him by the distributor who says, ' This
is for you.' He should not oust any man from his place. 1
These are the directions.
There are also three grades of men here :. The strict man must
not ask concerning a dwelling he has come to, 2 whether it is
far or quite near, troubled by unhuman beings, snakes, and so
on, or whether it is hot or cold. The moderate man may ask
such questions, but may not go and examine it. The soft man
may go and examine it, and if it does not please him he may
take another. The moment greedy behaviour in regard to
dwellings arises in these three men, their ascetic practice is
broken. This herein is the breach.
Now these are the advantages : Obeying the advice given,
as: ' One should be content with what one gets, 1 seeking the
good of one's fellow-monks, abandonment of thought of what
is inferior and superior, rejection of approval and disapproval,
closing the door of covetousness, conduct in conformity with
few wishes, and so forth.
Content with what he gets, the any-bed-
Recluse lies down in careless ease on beds,
Even though they be of grass. He does not long
For what is best, is not perturbed because
Of an inferior bed. To younger monks
He shows compassion. So a wise man ought
To be content with any bed, a rule
Of constant practice with the Ariyas,
And by the Bull-sage fittingly extolled.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions, grade,
breach, and advantage in the any-bedder's practice.
1 Or, he should not make another place for himself.
- Or, allotted to him.
90 The Path of Purity
13. The Sitting-Man's Practice.
The practice of the sitting-man also is observed with one or
other of the expressions : I refuse to lie down ; I observe the
sitting-man's practice. He who observes this practice should
rise up and walk to and fro for one watch out of the three
watches of the night, for lying down is the only posture that
is not permitted to him. These are the directions.
 There are also three grades of men here: The strict
man is not allowed a plank with a back support, or a cushion
of cloth for squatting on, or a bandage-cloth. The moderate
man may use any one of these three. The soft man is allowed
a plank with a back support, a cushion of cloth for squatting
on, a bandage-cloth, a pillow, a five-limbed seat, a seven-
limbed seat. A seat with a back support to lean against is a
five-limbed seat. A seat with a back support and a hand
support on either side is a seven-limbed seat. It is said
that people made such a seat for Mllhabhaya the Elder, who,
becoming a never-returner, entered parinibbana. The moment
these three men accept a bed to lie on, their ascetic practice
is broken. This herein is the breach.
Now these are the advantages: The cutting off of mental
bondage described as: ' He lives devoted to the pleasure of
lying down, the pleasure of lying on one's side, 1 the pleasure
of torpor,' 2 fitness for application to all subjects of medita-
tion, satisfied state of the postures, agreeableness for strenuous
effort, development of right attainment.
The monk who sits cross-legged, keeping straight
The body, doth disturb the Tempter's heart.
He takes no pleasure in the torpid state,
In lying down, but wakes his energies
And joyfully sits up, illumining
The grove of his ascetic practices.
As bliss and rapture, cleansed of earthly things,
Reward the monk, so one should steadfastly
Perform the duty of the sitting man.
This is the setting forth of the observance, directions,
grade, breach, and advantage in the sitting-man's practice.
1 Or, of turning from side to side. 2 MajjJiima i, 103.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 91
Of Ascetic and Other Terms as Moral Triad.
Now this is the elucidation of the verse (p. 66) :
As moral triad, as differentiated,
In groups and in detail decision shall
Be made regarding these ascetic practices.
Therein, ' as moral triad ' means that all the ascetic
practices may be moral or unmoral as those of probationers,
average persons and of saints purged of the intoxicants. 
There is no ascetic practice that is immoral. But the sectary
says, an ascetic practice may also be immoral because of the
saying: ' There is a forester of evil desires, not free from desire? 1
We reply that we do not say that one may not dwell with an
immoral thought in the forest. For whosoever makes his
abode in the forest is a forester, who may have evil desires,
or little, or no desire. Because the corruptions are shaken
off through this and that observance, the practices (or factors)
of the brother who has shaken them off are called ' ascetic
practices.' Or, knowledge which has obtained the common
name of asceticism, because it shakes off the corruptions, is
the factor of these observances thus ' ascetic practice ' (or
factor). Or again, it has been said that because these observ-
ances shake off the hostile corruptions they are ascetic, and
they are factors of (moral) attainment thus ' ascetic practice.'
No one whose observances are 2 such factors is known as
ascetic on account of his immorality. Else we should speak
of ascetic practices of which the factor is immorality which
shakes off nothing ; and immorality does not shake off greedi-
ness for robes and other evil states, nor is it a factor of moral
attainment. Therefore what has been said as, ' There is no
ascetic practice that is immoral,' is well said. There is no
ascetic practice in the ultimate sense to those whose ascetic
practice is freed from the moral triad. 3 From the shaking off
of what does this imaginary thing become ascetic practice ?
They would also fall into opposition with the saying : ' He goes
1 Anguttara iii, 219. - Read bhaveyyum for bhaveyyani.
3 Because they consider it as a concept.
92 The Path of Purity
on keeping the ascetic duties.' Therefore their saying should
not be accepted.
This so far is the elucidation by way of the moral triad.
Of Ascetic and Other Terms as Differentiated.
(1) Ascetic should be understood, (2) ascetic doctrine should
be understood, (3) ascetic states should be understood,
(4) ascetic practices should be understood, (5) for whom
is the practising of the ascetic practices suitable ? this
should be understood. Of these points (1) ' ascetic ' is a
person who has shaken off the corruptions, or a state for the
shaking off of the corruptions. (2) In ' ascetic doctrine '
there is one who is ascetic and not ascetic preacher, there is
one who is not ascetic but ascetic preacher, there is one who
is neither ascetic nor ascetic preacher, there is one who is
both ascetic and ascetic preacher. Of these he who has shaken
off his corruptions by means of his ascetic practice, but does
not admonish nor instruct others regarding ascetic practice,
is an ascetic but not ascetic preacher,like Bakkula the Elder; 1
as has been said : ' This venerable Bakkula is ascetic not ascetic
preacher.' And whoso  has not shaken off his corruptions
by means of ascetic practice, but just admonishes, instructs
others regarding it, is not ascetic but ascetic preacher, like
Upananda the Elder; 2 as has been said: ' This venerable
Upananda Sakyaputta is not an ascetic but ascetic preacher.'
Whoso is deficient in both respects like Laludayl 3 is neither
ascetic nor ascetic preacher; as has been said: ' This venerable
Ldluddyi is neither ascetic nor ascetic preacher.' Whoso like
the captain of the Law 4 is fulfilled in both respects is ascetic
and ascetic preacher; as has been said: ' This venerable
Sdriputta is both ascetic and ascetic preacher.' (3) ' Ascetic
states should be understood ' these five attendant states of
the volition of ascetic practice : fewness of wishes, contentment,
austerity, solitude, desire-for-these-states are known as
ascetic states from the expression, ' depending on fewness of
wishes, and so on.' Of them fewness of wishes and content-
1 Of. Majjhima iii, 124 /. a Cf. Jataka ii, 441.
3 Cf. Ib. i, 123, 446 /. 4 Cf. Theragathd 982 /.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 93
ment fall under non-greed; austerity and solitude under the
two states: non-greed and non-delusion. Desire-for-these-
states is knowledge. By means of non-greed one shakes off
greed for forbidden things, by non-delusion one shakes off
delusion which covers faults in them, and by non-greed one
shakes off devotion to the pleasure of sense which arises from
resorting to things allowed. By non-delusion one shakes off
devotion to self-torture, which arises on account of excessive
austerity in ascetic practice. Therefore should these states
be understood as ascetic states. (4) By ascetic practices
should be understood the thirteen, namely, the refuse-rag-
man's practice . . . sitting-man's practice. They have been
stated as regards their meaning, characteristic and so forth.
(5) For whom is the practising of ascetic practice suitable ?
for one walking in lust and one walking in delusion. Why so ?
Because the practising of ascetic practice is of painful progress
and means a life of austerity; and through painful progress
lust is calmed, through austerity the delusion of a non-negli-
gent man is put away. Or, herein the practising of the
practices of the forester and of the tree-rootman is suitable
for one walking in hate, for hate ceases in one dwelling without
society in the forest or at the foot of a tree.
This is the elucidation of ascetic and other terms as differ-
 In Groups and in Detail.
' In groups ' these ascetic practices are eight three chief
practices and five unmixed (separate) practices. Of them the
practices of the house-to-house-goer, one-sessioner, and open-
spacer are the three chief practices. For whoso keeps the
house-to-house-goer's practice will also keep the almsman's
practice. And whoso keeps the one-sessioner's practice, for
him the practices of the bowl-fooder and afterfood-refuser
will be easy to keep. Whoso keeps the open-spacer's practice,
what need is there for him to keep the practices of the tree-
rootman and the any-bedder ? Thus these three are the chief
practices. They make eight with these five: practices of the
forester, refuse-ragman, three-rober, sitting-man, burning-
94 The Path of Purity
grounder. Again, they form four classes: two concerning
the robe, five concerning the alms, five concerning the dwell-
ing, one concerning energy. Of these the sitting-man's practice
is one that concerns energy; the others are obvious. Again,
all are of two kinds by way of dependence: twelve depending
on the requisites, one depending on energy. They are also
of two kinds as to be resorted to and as not to be resorted to.
For they should be resorted to by him whose subject of medita-
tion increases with such resort, but not by him whose subject
of meditation decreases with it. He whose subject of medita-
tion increases and does not decrease, whether he resorts to
them or not, should also resort to them out of compassion for
posterity. For the sake of habit in future they should be re-
sorted to by him also whose subject of meditation, whether he
resorts to them or not, does not increase. Though twofold, as
to be resorted to and as not to be resorted to, all of them are
one by way of volition ; for ascetic practice as the volition to
observe is just one. It is also said in the commentaries:
' They say that which is volition is ascetic practice.'
' In detail ' they are forty-two : thirteen for brethren,
eight for sisters, twelve for novices, seven for female student
novices, two for lay-disciples male and female. If there were
a burning-ground fulfilled with the forester's practice in open
space, a single brother would be able to enjoy all the ascetic
practices at once. But the two practices of the forester and
the afterfood-refuser are prohibited for sisters by precept;
 and the three practices of the open-spacer, tree-rootman,
burning-grounder are difficult to carry out, for it is not proper
for a sister to live without a second person ; and in such places 1
it is hard to get a second with similar wishes. Even if one
was obtained, the sister would not be free from a life shared
with others. This being so, the purpose for which she resorted
to the ascetic practice would not be fulfilled. So, owing
to impracticability, five of the practices are left out for the
sisters, and only eight are to be taken.
Excepting the three-rober's practice from those mentioned
1 Or, on such occasions, under such circumstances.
II. Exposition of the Ascetic Practices 95
for the brethren and sisters, the remaining twelve are to be
known as for male novices, and seven for female novices.
For lay-disciples male and female the two practices of the
one-sessioner and the bowl-fooder are suitable and practicable.
Thus in detail they are forty-two.
This is the elucidation in groups and in detail.
Thus far is told the discourse on the ascetic practices to be
observed for the fulfilment of those qualities, such as fewness
of wishes, contentment, by means of which there is cleansing
of virtue, the different kinds of which have been shown in
the Path of Purity under the heads of virtue, concentration,
and understanding in the stanza :
The man discreet on virtue 'planted firm.
Thus is ended the second chapter called The Exposition
of Ascetic Practices, in the Path of Purity, composed for the
purpose of gladdening good folk.
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