The Perfection of Patience - The Ovada-patimokkha I



We read in the Commentary to the “Basket of Conduct” (Miscellaneous Sayings) about the defilements which can arise in the process of developing the perfections. When one is developing the perfection of patience the defilement can arise of “discriminating thoughts of oneself and others.”

For some people patience is limited, they have patience only with regard to some people and only sometimes. They compare another person with themselves and this is a condition for impatience. We should know that the defilement of discriminating thoughts of oneself and others hinders the development of patience. We read in the same section of the Commentary that one can be misled by the defilement of craving and that this hinders the development of all the perfections.

In the Ovada-patimokkha the Buddha exhorted the monks to have patience. There are two kinds of Patimokkha: the Ovada-patimokkha and the Åna- patimokkha. The Ovada-patimokkha, the exhortation to the Patimokkha, is an important principle of teaching or instruction. The Åna-patimokkha are the rules of the Vinaya which are an important foundation to be applied by the monks in their conduct. In the Ovada-patimokkha the Buddha taught the significance of the perfection of patience in three stanzas and in addition two more verses.

We read in the “Sublime Story” (Mahapadana Sutta, Dialogues of the Buddha II, no. XIV):

“Stanza 1:

khantí paramang tapo titikkha: forbearing patience is the highest ascetism.

nibbanang paramang vadanti Buddha: nibbana is supreme, the Buddhas say.

na hi pabbajito parupaghati: he, verily, is not a recluse who harms another.

samano hoti parang vihethayanto: nor is he an ascetic who oppresses others.

 

Stanza 2:

sabba-papassa akaranang: not performing evil 

kusalassa upasampada: accomplishing what is wholesome, doing all kinds of kusala.

sacitta-pariyodapanang: purification of one’s citta.

etang Buddhanasasanang: this is the teaching of the Buddhas.

 

Stanza 3:

anupavado anupaghato: not insulting, not harming.

patimokkhe ca sangvaro: restraint according to the patimokkha

mattanyuta ca bhattasming: knowing moderation in food.

pantanca sayan’ asanang : a secluded dwelling

adhicitte ca ayogo: endeavour as to higher consciousness

(development of calm of citta)

etan Buddhanasasanang: this is the teaching of the Buddhas.”

 

Topic 282