Sunday, 23 August 2009

Mighty is Morality - borrowed


Morality is the Second Mental Perfection:

Avoiding all Harm;
Doing only Good;
Purifying the Mind;
This is the True Dhamma
of all the Buddhas!
Dhammapada 183

Morality is the foundation,
the initiator & the origin of all,
that is fine, good & very beautiful...
One Must therefore purify morality.
Theragatha 612

Clean morality cultivated to purity brings all success!
Theragatha 608

Morality is a mighty Power!
Morality is a forceful Weapon!
Morality is a supreme Jewel!
Morality is a marvelous Protection!
Theragatha 614

Harmless towards all living beings,
Speaking only kind & wise truths,
Taking nothing not freely given,
Enjoying only one's own partner,
Never abusing drinks or drugs.
Having given up & left all behind
the five harmful actions, such
One truly possess right moral...
AN III 205-6

Ananda once asked the Buddha:
What, Venerable Sir, is the rewarding advantage of morality?
Freedom from regret, Ananda.
And what is the advantage of freedom from regret?
Joy that produces bliss, Ananda.
Bliss then generates happiness.
Happiness enables concentration.
Concentration facilitates vision and knowledge.
Vision and knowledge brings disillusion & detachment
Disillusion & detachment induces direct knowledge of
Certain & Complete Mental Release, Ananda…
AN X.1

Intention always comes first.
Intention is of all states the primer.
By intention are all things initiated.
By construction of mind are all phenomena formed.
So - if with good intention one thinks, speaks or acts:
Joy & pleasure surely follows one like a never-leaving shadow
However!!! - if with evil intention one thinks, speaks or acts:
Pain certainly follows one, like the wheel follows the car.
Dhammapada 1+2

Both the moral & immoral doings;
Both the good & the Bad actions;
That human beings do here;
These are truly only their own possession...!!!
These, they take along with them, when they die & go,
These actions are what follows them, like the shadow,
that never ever leaves...
So do only what is admirable & advantageous,
as an accumulating investment for the future life.
Good prior doings are the only support & help for any being,
when they re-arise in the next world…

Here and now the good-doer rejoices... Even so
after passing away and re-emerging, the doer of
good, reaps only Joy, pleasure and satisfaction ...
So both here and there, the wise with merit well
done & stored, enjoys the purity of prior actions.
Dhammapada 15

Here and now the bad-doer suffers... Even so
after passing away and re-emerging, the doer of
wrong & evil, reaps only pain, despair and regret ...
So both here and there, the fool with wrong views
& bad behavior, suffers agony as the inevitable
effect of prior evil action.
Dhammapada 16

As the yak-ox watch her tail even onto death,
without breaking through, when caught in thorns,
guard your doings as your own life, by avoiding all
overstepping of this fine line, limiting right from wrong.
The Basket of Behaviour, Cariyapitaka

The Bodhisatta once as the Naga serpent King Sankhapala
guarded his precepts of moral habit, even when tortured:
Though pierced with sharp bamboo stakes and hacked with
hunting knives, I raged no anger against these hunters, as this
was my final perfection of Morality!
Sankhapala Jataka no. 524

The 5 precious precepts (pañca-sila):
I accept the training rule of avoiding all killing of breathing beings.
I accept the training rule of not to taking anything, that is not given.
I accept the training rule of abstaining from any sexual misconduct.
I accept the training rule of desisting from all incorrect speech.
I accept the training rule of shun drinks & drugs causing carelessness.

True Buddhists undertake these precious precepts also here:

These are timeless laws of only Good,
which all the mighty Seers of the past
have fully followed & made their Way!

This Virtue of Morality is like Rock.
A Solid Foundation for all Good States!
Immorality creates regret, and thus destroys Joy...
Purity creates calm, and thus the subtle concentration,
which is necessary for gaining all higher understanding!
Only higher Understanding sets completely Free...

More on this basic first cause of all Good: Morality (Sīla)!

More of the 10 mental perfections (paramis):

Mighty is Morality!



  1. This bums me, O Mighty Bud Phil, because it sounds awfully dust-wipy, creating persons bloated with a sense of Self Righteousness.

    "Wash yourself in the blood of Christ and be as white as snow," [and the Christers might happily add], "as an accumulating investment for the future life" -- which immediately compromises the intention.

    Also, should there be dogmatic rules for what qualifies as being a "true Buddhist!?"

  2. Dust-wipy, huh? Well... Not dogmatic, but guidelines for the confused and meandering folks like me to help straighten us out. If doing good leads to self-righteousness, I have yet to see it. For me, self righeousness comes when I look at good I've done and said, "ohh, look at ME, I'M sooo good..."

    To me, that's a very different thing, and I hope I get smacked whenever I do it. The good deeds, though, are still good in themselves.

    Kant writes of this in his Groundwork. He says that wealth and fame are dangerous things (a wealth of virtue maybe as well) if they are not accompanied by a "good will." As usual, I think Buddha taught much the same.

    If my ego wants to claim my good deeds, then I just end up with a big ego, which eventually gets too fat to get out the door to do more good deeds and, bloated and stuck in the hallway, reality eventually deflates it.

    In fact though, I think good deeds, when done (and not simply talked about), break down the ego and the barriers between ourselves and others. So hoorah for good deeds. :)

  3. I'm not opposed to good deeds! [I'll refer you to a couple mission pastors who will certify my objection to their "faith only" preaching and my questioning how they avoid the teaching in James 2:17, " Even so faith, if it have not works, is dead in itself."] Woe, me. Why am I learning Bible stuff when I will never be a Christian and always be a Buddhist? O, woe.

    I DO question doing good deeds for untoward motivation. Ones motivation cannot be following dogma, thinks I. You can't be working an effort to purify yourself, for a better next life, to get yourself a condo in Nirvana. All that is the wrong motivation. No self-serving motivation is the right motivation.

  4. I think for some people the 'selfish' approach is necessary and okay.

    For a long time, getting 'A's helped motivate me to study. Then, after a while, the rewards of the process itself became evident and I condemned myself to a life of study :)

    The Buddha himself used the carrot (and the stick) at times with those for whom it was needed and useful.

  5. Very Good! [That is, you get an A+ from me for your comment, though I recognize you are beyond that.]

    You have beaten me with your carrot. And it hurts. I prefer winning in all disputes.

    Would it be all right if I win the next one?

  6. As the good zen master says, "To ask the question is to have already won."

    <-- looks around for a bigger stick.