The Great Pretenders



The Great Pretenders :



What Buddha said… : Those who are ever vigilant, who by day and by night discipline themselves, and who are wholly intent upon Nibbana, their defilements are destroyed.

What Buddha said… : It is better for one to eat a red-hot lump of iron burning like a flame than to eat almsfood offered by the pious if one is without morality and unrestrained in thought, word, and deed.

ONCE THERE WAS A TIME of great hardship in the country and the monks who were spending the vassa near a poor village found themselves with very little lay support.

In order to get enough food, the bhikkhus addressed each other in such a way that the people in the village, never suspecting that they would be deceived by monks, believed that they had attained sainthood. And as the news of them spread, they gained even more respect. So the villagers, although themselves struggling to survive, mangaged to pool together enough food to keep their “saints" well fed and comfortable.

When the vassa came to a close and all the bhikkhus who had spent their vassa away from the Buddha went back to pay their respects to him, as was the custom, the well-fed bhikkhus stood out like a sore thumb. Everyone else looked so thin and pale next to them.

The Buddha asked the healthy bhikkhus how they had managed to do so well when the other monks could barely get by. The bhikkhus, expecting praise for their cleverness, recounted how they had misled the poor villagers into believing that they were saints. “And are you really saints?" the Buddha asked them, knowing full well that they were not. When they admitted that they were not, the Buddha warned them that to accept requisites from lay supporters, if they did not truly merit them, was indeed very unwholesome action and should be refrained from.

What Buddha said… : It is better for one to eat a red-hot lump of iron burning like a flame than to eat almsfood offered by the pious if one is without morality and unrestrained in thought, word, and deed.

What Buddha said… : Those who are ever vigilant, who by day and by night discipline themselves, and who are wholly intent upon Nibbana, their defilements are destroyed.

What Buddha said… : For one who transgresses the truth and is given to lying, and who is unconcerned with the next life, there is no evil that he cannot do.


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