Pattanikujjana - Overturning the bowl

  1. Does anyone know if this procedure has any parallel in non-Theravādin Vinayas?

“Mendicants, the Saṅgha may, if it wishes, turn the bowl upside down for a lay follower on eight grounds. What eight? They try to prevent the mendicants from getting material possessions. They try to harm mendicants. They try to drive mendicants from a monastery. They insult and abuse mendicants. They divide mendicants against each other. They criticize the Buddha, the teaching, and the Saṅgha. The Saṅgha may, if it wishes, turn the bowl upside down for a lay follower on these eight grounds.

  1. And are there any parallels to the origin story of this procedure, i.e., the Vinaya’s account of Vaḍḍha the Licchavī’s slandering of Dabba the Mallian?

At one time Vaḍḍha the Licchavī was a friend of the monks Mettiya and Bhūmajaka. On one occasion he went to them and said, “I pay respect to you, Venerables.” But they did not respond. A second time and a third time he said the same thing, but they still did not respond.

“Have I done something wrong? Why don’t you respond?”

“It’s because we’ve been treated badly by Dabba the Mallian and you’re not taking an interest.”

“What can I do?”

“If you like, you could make the Buddha expel Dabba.”

“What should I do? How am I able to do that?”

“Go to the Buddha and say, ‘Sir, this is not proper or appropriate. There’s fear, distress, and oppression in this district, where none of these should exist. From where one would expect security, there’s insecurity. It’s as if water is burning. Venerable Dabba the Mallian has raped my wife.’”

Saying, “Yes,” he went to the Buddha, bowed, sat down, and repeated what he had been told to say.



An excellent use case for the recently discussed AI-generated CBETA translations!

Searching around, I found the Chinese name for the act (覆鉢羯磨) and from there a parallel in the Mūlasarvāstivāda-vinaya (T24n1451_004) (with another possible attestation at X40n0719_013)

Perhaps @cdpatton can double check the Chinese above? :pray:

And thanks @SebastianN and Ven @Vimala for the amazing new tool! :pray::grin:


It looks pretty similar. A monk named Dravyo the Mallaputra and two monks named Mitra and Bhūmika (友and 地, not sure about exact Sanskrit) have been feuding for many lifetimes. There’s also an upstanding lay Licchavi named Subhadra (善賢). The two monks encounter Subhadra on the road. They ask him to tell the Buddha that Dravyo’s been acting completely immoral and had sex with his wife. They say this would be a wonderful verbal offering to make, and the Buddha will rejoice upon hearing it (?!). Subhadra didn’t have anything planned to tell the Buddha, so he does their bidding. After Subhadra leaves, the Buddha says it was a lie and that they should perform the rite of overturning the bowl.

The Chinese word 覆 commonly means a covering or hindrance, but it can also mean to overturn or overthrow. That’s why the AI translator insists on “cover the bowl.” It also has a humorous tendency to guess that any name starting with 善 is Sunetra (善眼). I guess that name must have been in a translation they used to train it.