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  Dhammika Sutta
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 07-04-2017, 12:44 PM - Forum: Selected Discourses - No Replies

I have just added the Dhammika Sutta to my website. 

This discourse on the right conduct for a disciple is from the Suttanipāta.

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  Cūḷakammavibhaṅga Sutta
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-30-2017, 09:41 AM - Forum: Selected Discourses - No Replies

I have just added a translation of this important discourse on the law of kamma. 

The Lesser Discourse on the Analysis of Kamma

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  Conditional Relations
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-28-2017, 06:04 PM - Forum: Selected Discourses - No Replies

I have added a translation for Conditional Relations

These are just the first sections of the first of five books from the Abhidhamma Piṭaka. It is often recited in Burma, and some devotees memorise these sections for recitation.

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  Cyber Bullying and the First Precept
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-17-2017, 04:32 PM - Forum: Theravāda Buddhism - No Replies

A young woman has recently been convicted of "Involuntary Manslaughter," for urging a former boyfriend to kill himself. She may face up to twenty years for the crime, but what offence is this according to the Buddha's teaching?

The first precept of abstaining from killing living beings is broken if:

  1. One does it oneself
  2. One urges another to do it
  3. One condones it
  4. One speaks in praise of it.
The Vinaya rule of defeat for monks is broken if one urges another to commit suicide by speaking in praise of death. It is the same offence as murder. No doubt the kammic consequences are different, but the first precept is definitely broken, even though the act of killing is done by the victim. It is intention that the Buddha called kamma. 

This is what Ajahn Thanissaro says in the Buddhist Monastic Code:

Intention and perception. The Vibhaṅga defines intentionally as “having made the decision knowingly, consciously, and purposefully.” According to the Commentary, having made the decision refers to the moment when one “crushes” one’s indecisiveness by taking an act. Knowingly means being aware that, “This is a living being.” Consciously means being aware that one’s action is depriving the living being of life. Purposefully means that one’s purpose is murderous. Whether one is motivated by compassion, hatred, or indifference is irrelevant as far as the offence is concerned. 

So, if you see any instances of cyber-bullying couched in terms like “Why don't you kill yourself?” do report it. In most cases, the victim is unlikely to act on it, but sometimes that does happen. If someone urges another to kill themselves, and it is not done in jest, but with ill-will, and if the victim does commit suicide, then the unwholesome kamma of killing a human being is completed and the first precept is broken. As the Venerable Ledi Sayādaw says in his Manual of the Path Factors

Five Factors of Killing Living Beings
  1. The being must be alive.
  2. One must know that it is alive.
  3. One must intend to cause its death.
  4. An action must be done to cause death.
  5. Its death must follow from that action.

If all five factors are fulfilled, the first precept is violated and should be taken again.

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  No Statute of Limitations for the Law of Kamma
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-17-2017, 03:34 PM - Forum: Theravāda Buddhism - Replies (3)

There are good reasons why some jurisdictions have a statute of limitations on crimes other than murder. I don't want to debate the rights and wrongs of such legal issues. That is a matter for judges and politicians to decide after careful consideration of the consequences. 

I just wanted to point out that there is no statute of limitations when it comes to the Law of Kamma. Having done an evil deed, the result may not come at once, but it will come in due course when conditions ripen, as is shown by the story of Mahākāla. 

The Lay Disciple Mahākāla

This devout layman, having listened to the Dhamma throughout the night, was washing his face at the monastery’s pond in the morning. At that time, a thief who was being pursued, threw his stolen goods near him and fled. The owners, mistaking Mahākāla for the thief, beat him to death. When the young monks found his dead body, and reported it to the Buddha, they said that he did not deserve to die like that. The Buddha explained that it was due to his past evil kamma.

The Soldier and the Beautiful Wife
The king of Benares posted a soldier at a frontier town, with orders to escort travellers through a forest where there were robbers. One day, a man and his wife arrived. On seeing the man’s wife, the soldier fell in love with her at first sight. In spite of the man’s protests, he had the carriage turned back, and arranged for them to be lodged for the night. During the night, the soldier hid a precious jewel in the travellers’ carriage, and made a noise as if thieves had broken in. In the morning he ‘discovered’ the theft, and sent his men to search for the thieves. When the man and his wife left in the morning, their carriage was searched, the gem discovered, and the headman of the village had the man led away and beaten to death. After the soldier died, he was reborn in hell, and during the Buddha’s time he was reborn as Mahākāla.

“By oneself is evil done; it is self-born, it is self-caused. 
Evil grinds the unwise as a diamond grinds a hard gem. (Dhammapada v 161).


Having told this story of Mahākāla’s past life, the Buddha uttered the above verse.

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  Meditation advice
Posted by: Upekha - 06-17-2017, 08:16 AM - Forum: Insight Meditation - Replies (2)

Venerable Bhikkhu Pesala.

Can you please give me some advice on my meditation? 

I have been meditating for the past 24 years and I am from Sri Lanka. Here in Sri Lanka, the meditation teachers mainly follow the Mahasi Method, which I have been practising , but I also do a bit of samatha as well.

I won't go to describe all that I have experienced as I feel it will be too long. Hence I will write about what has been happening these past few years. 

I have experienced, that what I see  ( the object) is vibrating and also the eye  is vibrating.  Hearing also breaks up and then I feel a vibration in the ear drum. As to the nose and smells, some times I can smell things that are very subtle , but some times I don't smell at all. As to the taste, at times it is there and at times, it's not there. 

When I meditate now, I find that all the sensations have ceased and there is only a state of knowing. 

Venerable Sir, I am suffering from a connective tissue disorder which does cause a lot of pain. When I go on retreat, I find that the pain comes up, but all the teachers here, tell me not to mentally note the pain as I will be just stuck there, hence to stick with the breath. 

Bhante, I have read the book Dhamma therapy where meditators were cured of their disease. My question is, did they observed the painful sensations or did they stick to the breath. Should I watch the painful sensations at this stage of my meditation, or should I simply watch the breath? 

My teacher has told me as this is due to a sickness, if I go to watch it, then I will be stuck there and not progress,   hence to ignore it and stay on the breath.

Can you please advice me  on what I should do.

Thanking you in advance.

With metta

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  Select an Avatar
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-12-2017, 09:46 PM - Forum: Introductions - Replies (4)

Don't remain faceless  Wink

Select an avatar to make it easier to recognise your posts. 

The maximum size is 100x100 pixels and 25Kbyte.

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  Acariya
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-10-2017, 10:08 PM - Forum: Latest Updates of my Free Fonts - Replies (1)


  1. Version 1.70 replaced Romanian localised forms with a Stylistic Set. 
  2. Irony punctuation reversed question mark is a Standard Ligature substitution for ??, while Interrobang replaces ?! and inverse interrobang replaces ¿¡. 
  3. Super/subscript glyphs (×÷) and thin space were added for use with fractions.
  4. Kerning pairs were added for subscripts and fractions that use them. 
  5. Character Variants were improved and are now included in the Web and WOFF versions.
  6. Alternative Fractions were improved and some bugs were fixed.

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  How Bhikkhu Pesala Became a Buddhist
Posted by: Bhikkhu Pesala - 06-08-2017, 07:01 PM - Forum: Introductions - No Replies

My first contact with Buddhism came through meeting two meditators who had practised the U Ba Khin meditation method with Sri Goenka in India. After an intensive ten-day retreat with Mr John Coleman, the author of »» “A Quiet Mind,” I resolved to dedicate my life to the practice of insight meditation .

In 1976 I moved to Birmingham as the lay attendant of Sayādaw U Rewata Dhamma. For the next three years I drove the Sayādaw all over the country to visit his supporters and helped with cooking for vipassanā retreats and other daily chores. I studied the Visuddhimagga Sīlakkhandha and Abhidhammatthasaṅgaha with the Sayādaw.

I ordained in 1979 with Venerable Mahāsi Sayādaw as my preceptor, and Chanmyay Sayādaw U Janaka as the examiner. Later the same year, I went to practise intensive meditation for six months at Mahāsi Yeikthā in Rangoon. Altogether, I have been to Burma four times to practise meditation under senior disciples of Mahāsi Sayādaw, especially Chanmyay Sayādaw U Janaka.

Since 1988 I have been editing Buddhist publications by various authors as well as my own. I don't translate them from Pali or Burmese, but only edit existing publications to make them more accessible. 

The Association for Insight Meditation was set up in 1995 with the help of Christine Fitzmaurice and David Glendinning. Our first printed publication was The Questions of Sakka, a discourse by the Venerable Mahāsi Sayādaw. 

I no longer print any publications due to the wide availability of Internet access, and the high cost of printing. I run free meditation classes and retreats in East London.

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  Hello from California
Posted by: Mkoll - 06-08-2017, 02:08 AM - Forum: Introductions - Replies (1)

Hello! I first took refuge about 4 years ago which is the point when I became Buddhist. The intensity of my meditation practice is of a waxing and waning nature, but my refuge and respect in the Triple Gem is quite solid.

I don't follow a particular meditation tradition strictly nor have I in the past, but I certainly see the value in this. I could see myself practicing in a tradition on a retreat, when circumstances allow. My meditation practice is based on my understanding of suttas such as the Satipatthana and Anapanasati suttas as well as others.

My main special interest in Buddhism are the early texts, mainly the 4 main Nikayas. I've read all 4 in translation and am in the slow process of doing it again. The wisdom and means to practce Dhamma within them is immeasurable. One day I may even learn Pali to read them like that, but that may just be wishful thinking.  Smile

Thanks for inviting me here, Bhante Pesala.

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