Some Thoughts on the 'Thought Experiment' :)

Dear Ayya @vimalanyani

I was going over an old thread you’d started with some questions in mind. I was going to ask a simpler question (as you know :slight_smile: ) but then decided on a few different questions and the odd comment. I know you won’t mind. :anjal:

I was originally going to ask what the specific rules are…but you’ve already answered that :slight_smile: here:

As a rough guess, how often do you think these are repeated in EBT Suttas? Sorry that might be a tough question!

I liked that the following texts are EBTS:

[my emphasis]

And there’s this, which seems, in accordance with the “legal” side of things to demonstrate that there is a precedence for going to an even earlier text for your rules. Would these be considered “even earlier” and are there other cases where earlier cases are used “legally”?

[my emphasis]

Nice…I love this about how the Buddha set things up.

Right, I’ve asked Ayya and it’s the Q & A section.

So…if you want to post your ‘answers’ please back them up with EBT references and, as always, keep this a friendly thread.

Please don’t expect any responses from me either as I’m busy with other matters and won’t be on D&D for a number of days…


I really don’t know how often that passage I quoted appears in the suttas altogether. Quite often. :grin:
In the Majjhima Nikaya, it appears in MN 27, 38, 51, 60, 76, 79, 94, 101. I don’t have the time to search all the Nikayas, especially because this passage is so common that it is often abbreviated / elided and thus hard to find.

I’m not sure if I fully understand your question. Are you asking if the sutta texts of the gradual training are earlier than the bhikkhuni patimokkha rules? Then yes, definitely. Significant parts of the bhikkhuni patimokkha are not even EBTs. The variance between schools is quite large, and clearly stuff was added after the sectarian splits.
It’s probably even earlier than the bhikkhu patimokkha. The gradual training must have been around since the earliest time of the Buddha’s teaching, but the patimokkha rules were only laid down one by one after the early days, when the sangha started to decline.
If this is not what you were asking, please try again. :slightly_smiling_face:

Well, in modern times, bhikkhuni ordination by bhikkhus only - instead of double ordination - is a case where an earlier version of ordination was used to perform a legally valid sangha act.
Or straight after the Buddha’s parinibbana, when the first council had recited the suttas and vinaya, a senior monk declared that he would continue to follow the rules as he remembered them - not as the council said -, which was apparently an earlier version that the Buddha had changed afterwards.


Thank you!!! I feel my questions have been more than answered.

Thank you for this!! It is another thing that I was utterly ignorant off. Where would I find this in the EBTs?

That’s extremely kind of you. :slight_smile:


:grin: If you define EBTs as texts from the Buddha’s lifetime, then you won’t find it. The first council happened straight after the Parinibbana…
But you can find it in the vinaya text about the first council, Culavagga 11:
(Scroll down until you see the heading “On the higher penalty”. It’s the paragraph just above that.)

Now at that time the venerable Purāṇa was walking on almstour in the Southern Hills together with a large Order of monks, with at least five hundred monks. Then the venerable Purāṇa, having stayed in the Southern Hills for as long as he found suiting, after the monks who were elders had chanted dhamma and discipline, approached Rājagaha, the Bamboo Grove, the squirrels’ feeding place, and the monks who were elders; having approached, having exchanged friendly greetings with the monks who were elders, he sat down at a respectful distance. The monks who were elders spoke thus to the venerable Purāṇa as he was sitting down at a respectful distance:
“Reverend Purāṇa, dhamma and discipline have been chanted by monks who are elders. Submit yourself to this chanting.”
“Your reverences, well chanted by the elders are dhamma and discipline, but in that way that I heard it in the Lord’s presence, that I received it in his presence, in that same way will I bear it in mind.”


That’s awesome :slight_smile: Thanks very much! :anjal: