Varṣa skandhaka

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Source: Taishō (CBETA edition), Vol. 22, pp. 830–835. Translated by Christie Chang. Edited by Bhikṣunī Thubten Chodron and Venerable Thubten Damcho, with clarifications by Bhikṣunī Heng Ching. First published by the Bodhi Foundation for Culture and Education.

  1. At one time, when the Buddha was at Jetavana in Anāthapiṇḍada’s Park in Śrāvastī, the group of six bhikṣus traveled around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter.1 During the summer months, torrential rains caused floods that washed away their robes, alms bowls, sitting cloths, and needle containers, and they trampled on and killed living plants. Then the laypeople saw this and criticized the bhikṣus, saying, “Sons of the Śākyas have no integrity and consideration for others, they trample on and kill living plants. They praise themselves, saying, ‘I know the proper Dharma.’ How can this be the proper Dharma when they travel around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter; in the summer, torrential rains cause floods that wash away their robes, alms bowls, sitting cloths, and needle containers; and they trample on living plants and sever their life faculties?
  2. “Even practitioners of other sects observe a three-month varṣā (rains retreat). Yet these sons of the Śākyas travel around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter; torrential rains cause floods that wash away their robes, alms bowls, sitting cloths, and needle containers; and they trample on living plants and sever their life faculties.
  3. “Even insects and birds have nests and places to dwell in. Yet the sons of the Śākyas travel around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter; torrential rains cause floods that wash away their robes, alms bowls, sitting cloths, and needle containers; and they trample on living plants and sever their life faculties.”
  4. Then, the bhikṣus heard [the laypeople’s criticism]. Among them, those who had few desires and were content, observed ascetic practices (dhūtas), delighted in learning the precepts, had integrity and consideration for others, reprimanded the group of six bhikṣus. “How can you travel around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter? In the summer, torrential rains cause floods that wash away your robes, alms bowls, sitting cloths, and needle containers, and you trample on and kill living plants. These laypeople believe that plants have sentience.2 By causing the laypeople to criticize [the saṅgha], you have caused them to create nonvirtue.”3
  5. Then the bhikṣus went to the World-honored One, bowed at his feet, sat to one side, and fully reported this matter to him. Due to this matter, the World-honored One assembled the bhikṣu saṅgha and reprimanded the group of six bhikṣus through countless expedient means. “Your behavior is wrong. It is not [in line with] deportment, nor pure conduct, nor the practices of renunciants (śramaṇas), nor conduct that follows [the path to liberation]. You should not behave in this way. How can the group of six bhikṣus travel around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter; in the summer, torrential rains cause floods that wash away your robes, alms bowls, sitting cloths, and needle containers; and you trample on and kill living plants? These laypeople believe that plants have sentience, and by causing them to criticize [the saṅgha], you have caused them to create nonvirtue.”
  6. After reprimanding the group of six bhikṣus through countless expedient means, the Buddha told the bhikṣus, “You should not travel around at all times during the spring, summer, and winter. From now on, I allow the bhikṣus to observe summer varṣā for three months.
  7. “You should go to the vinaya master4 you rely on and say, ‘I will observe varṣā at this place. Elder, please listen. I Bhikṣu _____ rely on _____ village, _____ monastery, _____ room to observe summer varṣā for the early three months, after repairing damage in the lodgings.’ Make this statement three times. The transaction for [entering] summer varṣā for the later three months is the same.”
  8. [Validity of varṣā depends on one’s intention]

  9. Once, some bhikṣus stayed in a place where there was no vinaya master, so they did not know to whom they should declare [that they were entering varṣā]. The bhikṣus had doubts and wondered whether their varṣā was valid. They then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If you generate the intention to observe varṣā, then the varṣā is valid. From now on, I allow the bhikṣus, if you do not have a vinaya master whom you can rely on, to perform the individual transaction of [entering] varṣā.”5
  10. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to observe varṣā at a dwelling. Without a vinaya master there was no one to whom he could declare [that he was entering varṣā], and he forgot to perform the individual transaction of [entering] varṣā. He had doubts and wondered whether his varṣā was valid. [The bhikṣus] went and told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If you have come intentionally to observe varṣā, the varṣā is valid.”
  11. Once, some bhikṣus traveled to a varṣā abode. They entered the territory wishing to observe varṣā, and then dawn broke.6 These bhikṣus had doubts as to whether their varṣā was valid. [The bhikṣus] then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If you have come intentionally to observe varṣā, the varṣā is valid.”
  12. At one time, a bhikṣu wishing to observe varṣā traveled to a varṣā abode. He entered the saṃghārāma7 when dawn broke. He had doubts and wondered whether his varṣā was valid. [The bhikṣus] then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If you have come intentionally to observe varṣā, the varṣā is valid.”
  13. At one time, a bhikṣu traveled to a dwelling wishing to observe varṣā there. He had one foot inside the territory and one foot outside the territory when dawn broke. He had doubts and wondered whether his varṣā was valid. [The bhikṣus] then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If you have come intentionally to observe varṣā, the varṣā is valid.”
  14. Once, some bhikṣus traveled to a dwelling wishing to observe varṣā there. They had one foot inside the saṃghārāma and one foot outside the saṃghārāma when dawn broke. These bhikṣus had doubts and wondered whether their varṣā was valid. [The bhikṣus] then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If you have come intentionally to observe varṣā, the varṣā is valid.”
  15. If at the end of varṣā, incoming bhikṣus arrive and displace the residing bhikṣus,8 the Buddha said, “[Incoming bhikṣus] should not displace [the residing bhikṣus] and [the residing bhikṣus] should not leave.”
  16. [Distributing lodgings and bedding]

  17. Once, some bhikṣus at a dwelling accepted their rooms without checking the condition of the lodgings and bedding, so they received poor rooms and bad bedding. They said angrily to the residing bhikṣus, “Your minds are biased. You give good rooms and bedding to those whom you favor; you give bad rooms and bedding to those whom you do not favor. Since you do not favor us, you have given us bad rooms and bedding.” Then, the bhikṣus fully reported this matter to the World-honored One.
  18. The World-honored One said to the bhikṣus, “If a bhikṣu wishes to observe varṣā at a dwelling, he should first check the condition of his lodgings and bedding personally, then accept his room. From now on, I allow you to assign someone to distribute lodgings and bedding through a one-motion one-proclamation karman (saṅgha transaction). Those who have five negative qualities should not be assigned as the distributor of lodgings and bedding: partiality, anger, fear, ignorance, and not knowing what to distribute and what not to distribute. Those who have these five negative qualities should not be assigned as the distributor of lodgings and bedding. Those who have five virtuous qualities should be assigned as the distributor of lodgings and bedding: being free from partiality, anger, fear, ignorance, and knowing what to distribute and what not to distribute. Those who have these five qualities should be assigned as the distributor of lodgings and bedding.
  19. “You should assign someone who is capable of performing the karman, not on the basis of whether he is senior or junior, nor whether he is familiar or unfamiliar with the vinaya. The assigned person should declare as follows:

    [Motion]: Virtuous saṅgha, please listen. If the saṅgha is ready, may the saṅgha agree to assign Bhikṣu _____ as the distributor of lodgings and bedding. Those who agree that the saṅgha assigns Bhikṣu _____ as the distributor of lodgings and bedding remain silent. Those who do not agree speak up.

    [Proclamation]: Virtuous saṅgha, please listen. The saṅgha now assigns Bhikṣu _____ as the distributor of rooms and bedding. Those who agree that the saṅgha appoints Bhikṣu _____ as the distributor of rooms and bedding remain silent. Those who do not agree speak up.

    [Conclusion]: Since the saṅgha has shown its silent approval, this bhikṣu saṅgha has completed assigning Bhikṣu _____ as the distributor of lodgings and bedding. This matter will proceed as decided.

  20. “After the distributor of lodgings and bedding has been assigned, the distributor should count the number of bhikṣus, lodgings, and bedding. He should find out how many rooms are occupied and how many are empty, how many rooms have bedding and how many do not, how many rooms have blankets and how many do not, how many rooms have material supplies and how many do not, how many have utensils and how many do not, how many have robes offered by donors and how many do not, how many have offerings and how many do not, and who the building manager is.9
  21. “If there is a building manager, the distributor should ask the senior which room he wishes to stay in and which he does not, then finish counting the lodgings and bedding. He then goes to the most senior saṅgha member and says, “Venerable, please choose your lodgings and bedding as you please.” After first giving a room to the most senior saṅgha member, he should then give a room to the second senior saṅgha member. After giving a room to the second senior saṅgha member, he should then give a room to the third senior saṅgha member. After giving a room to the third senior saṅgha member, he should then give a room to the fourth senior saṅgha member. In this way [he gives the rooms] in succession until the most junior member.
  22. “If there are extra lodgings and bedding, the distributor should start [the distribution procedure] from the most senior saṅgha member to further distribute them. If there are still extra lodgings, he should again start from the most senior saṅgha member to further distribute them. If there are excessive extras, these should be made available as accommodation for incoming bhikṣus. If incoming bhikṣus arrive, these should be given to them. If nonvirtuous bhikṣus arrive, do not accommodate them. If virtuous bhikṣus arrive, accommodate them. If there are still extras, save them. If rooms are saved they should not be closed off [if needed]. If [the distributor] closes off [extra rooms], he should be dealt with according to the rules.”
  23. Once, a bhikṣu received a dilapidated room and thought, “I should not accept this room in case they make me repair it.” The bhikṣus then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “He should accept the room and repair it according to his ability.”
  24. Once, some bhikṣus were allocated saṅgha gathering places [as lodgings], such as the sauna, the summer hall, and the walking meditation hall. Incoming bhikṣus who arrived did not receive rooms and had no place to stay. The bhikṣus fully reported this matter to the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “The common saṅgha gathering places, such as the sauna, the summer hall, and the walking meditation hall should not be allocated [as lodgings]. If the lower level of a hall is a gathering place, the upper level can be allocated [as lodgings]. If the upper level of the hall is a gathering place, the lower level can be allocated [as lodgings].”
  25. Once, after checking all the lodgings, some bhikṣus saw a forest (araṇya) cave and thought, “We shall observe varṣā here.” Later, some other bhikṣus also found this forest cave and thought, “We shall observe varṣā here.” By the 16th [of the 4th month], many bhikṣus were gathered in this cave. The cave became too crowded and many diseases spread. The bhikṣus then told the World-honored One, and the World-honored One said, “If a bhikṣu wishes to observe varṣā in such a place, he should first go there and make a mark, such as a handprint, an image of a wheel, Maheśvara, creepers, grapevines, flowers, or five colors, or write his name [indicating that] so-and-so wishes to observe varṣā here.”
  26. The Buddha allowed those who had made their marks first to stay [in a dwelling]. When these bhikṣus left the dwelling, they did so without erasing their names. Other bhikṣus perceived that the dwelling was already occupied and did not dare to stay there. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should not leave [a dwelling] without erasing your name; you should leave after erasing your name.”
  27. At one time [during the rule of] King Prasenajit, the people of the border region rebelled, and the king himself led the army to quell the rebellion. Some bhikṣus were traveling to the border region, and their lodgings were too small to accommodate them all. The bhikṣus said, “The Buddha instructed us to distribute the bedding amongst ourselves.” The bhikṣus told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow you to allocate the beds equally. If space is insufficient, you should distribute the string-beds equally. If space is still insufficient, you should distribute places for lying down equally. If space is still insufficient, you should distribute places for sitting equally.”
  28. [Moving and using bedding]

  29. A bhikṣu moved the mattress and bedding allotted to [one room] into another room. The bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should not transfer [bedding].”
  30. It happened that there were rooms with extra bedding while there were rooms with insufficient bedding. The bhikṣus reported this matter to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow the bhikṣus [to transfer bedding] after speaking with someone residing there [before you], such as the stūpa-keeper, the building manager, or those who have received rooms to observe varṣā for three months.”
  31. Some bhikṣus left without returning [extra] bedding to its original location. The bhikṣus who arrived later thought that the bedding belonged in that room and continued to use it. The bhikṣus went and reported this matter to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should not leave without returning the bedding. You should leave after returning the bedding. Those who do not should be dealt with according to the rules.”
  32. Once, there were lodgings that became dilapidated. The bhikṣus were cautious [about transferring bedding] as the Buddha had disallowed the transfer of bedding from one room to another. The bhikṣus reported this matter to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If lodgings are damaged, I allow you to move the bedding allotted to that room to another room.”
  33. After moving the bedding, the bhikṣus did not use it and bugs caused it to rot. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should use the bedding.”
  34. Since the Buddha allowed use [of the bedding], the bhikṣus did not wash and dry their feet [first], and used [the bedding] as a garment that touches the body [i.e. an undergarment]. The bhikṣus reported this matter to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should not [use bedding] without washing and drying your feet [first], nor as a garment that touches the body.”10
  35. The bhikṣus became cautious as when they had reported to the Buddha, the Buddha had said that they should not use bedding as a garment that touches the body. As a result, they did not dare to touch the bedding with their hands or feet. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “The bedding should not touch the body in the area between the armpits and knees. There is no harm in touching it with your hands and feet.”
  36. Once, some donors offered undergarments to the bhikṣus. The bhikṣus, being cautious, did not accept them because the Buddha had disallowed the use of undergarments. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow you to follow the donors’ wishes.”
  37. Once, some bhikṣus were cautious as the Buddha had disallowed the use of the saṅgha’s bedding as undergarments, therefore they did not cover [their bodies] properly. The bhikṣus reported this matter to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should adjust [the bedding] to cover [your bodies] appropriately.”11
  38. It happened that after lodgings were repaired, the bedding that had been in a room was not returned to its original location. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If lodgings have been repaired, the bedding should be returned to its original location. Those who do not do so should be dealt with according to the rules.”
  39. A bhikṣu moved bedding allotted to one monastery (vihāra) to another monastery. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should not move bedding allotted to one monastery to another monastery.”
  40. It happened that there were terrible disasters, or [attacks from] enemies, or rebellions, or pillage of the country and cities, such that people were harmed and killed, and dwellings damaged. The bhikṣus were cautious [about moving] because the Buddha had disallowed moving bedding allocated to a monastery to another monastery. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If there are terrible disasters, or [attacks from] enemies, or rebellions, or pillage of the country and cities, such that people are harmed and killed, and dwellings damaged, I allow you to move to another place and to move the bedding [as well].”
  41. Later, peace was restored in the country and cities, people recovered, and the monasteries were reestablished, but the bedding was not returned. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If peace is restored in the country and cities, people recover, and the monasteries are reestablished, you should return the bedding. Those who do not return [the bedding] should be dealt with according to the rules.
  42. “If other bhikṣus come to request things that they should not request, you should not give them what they request. You should only give to those who are trustworthy and will return what they obtained.”12
  43. At one time, there was a dwelling where the saṅgha members of the four directions received a great amount of undesignated bedding, string-beds, wooden beds, thick and thin mattresses, pillows, blankets, carpets, bathing vessels, staffs, and fans. The bhikṣus did not know how to distribute these materials and reported it to the Buddha. The Buddha said, “I allow you to give [them first] to those who do not have bedding in their rooms. If there are extras, you should distribute them starting from the most senior saṅgha member.”
  44. [Early and later varṣā]

  45. At one time, Śāriputra and Maudgalyāyana wished to observe varṣā with the World-honored One. They set off from their dwelling on the 15th [of the 4th lunar month] and did not arrive until the 17th of [the 4th lunar month]. They did not know what to do. They then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow you to observe later varṣā. There are two kinds of varṣā, early varṣā and later varṣā. If you observe early varṣā, you should stay for the early three months, if you observe later varṣā, you should stay for the later three months.”
  46. Those observing early varṣā wished to give the pravāraṇa (invitation).13 Those observing later varṣā did not know if they could also give the pravāraṇa or not. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow you to give the pravāraṇa, [but you have to] stay until the [90] days [of varṣā] are complete.”
  47. Those observing early varṣā counted it in their [ordination] years after giving the pravāraṇa, but those observing later varṣā did not know whether they could count it in their [ordination] years. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “You should not count it in your [ordination] years when you have yet to complete the three months [of varṣā].”
  48. Those observing early varṣā completed the pravāraṇa and evicted those observing later varṣā. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “[Those observing early varṣā] should not evict and [those observing later varṣā] should not leave.”
  49. Those observing early varṣā completed the pravāraṇa and distributed the offerings received during the summer. Those observing later varṣā were cautious and did not dare to receive [their portion], because the Buddha disallowed them from seeking offerings when they had yet to finish three months [of varṣā]. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow bhikṣus [observing later varṣā] to receive [offerings]. You should complete the remaining days [of retreat] to fulfil [the varṣā].”
  50. Those observing early varṣā completed the pravāraṇa and distributed bedding. Those observing later varṣā were cautious and did not dare to receive [their portion], because they had yet to fulfil three summer months [of varṣā]. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “I allow you to receive [bedding] for future [use].”
  51. [Allowed places for observing varṣā]

  52. At one time, some bhikṣus observed varṣā in an open space. Exposed to the wind and sun, they became tan, thin, and their skin peeled and cracked. The bhikṣus went to the Buddha, bowed at his feet, withdrew, and sat to one side. The World-honored One knew [the reason] but deliberately asked, “Why have you become tan, thin, and your skin is peeled and cracked?” The bhikṣus replied, “Because we observed varṣā on open ground.” The Buddha said, “You should not observe varṣā on open ground. From now on, I allow the bhikṣus to observe varṣā in a sheltered area.”
  53. At one time, some bhikṣus observed varṣā in the trees and urinated and defecated on the trees. The tree spirits became angry and resentful, and bided their time to kill the bhikṣus. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I do not allow bhikṣus to observe varṣā in trees. You should not climb trees to a position higher than a human being. You should not dirty trees by urinating or defecating around them.”
  54. At one time, some bhikṣus were traveling around in Kośala and encountered fierce animals on the way. These bhikṣus climbed trees to a position higher than a human being, but became cautious and climbed back down as the Buddha had disallowed them from climbing trees to a position higher than a human being. As a result, these bhikṣus were harmed by the fierce animals. The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to climb trees to a position higher than a human being if you face life-threatening obstacles or obstacles to pure practice.”
  55. Some bhikṣus wished to collect dry firewood on the trees, so the Buddha allowed them to use hooks, ladders, and rope-nets to obtain these. Later, the bhikṣus became cautious and did not dare to climb the dried trees. The Buddha said, “I allow you to climb a tree if it is completely dried out.”
  56. At one time, some bhikṣus wished to observe varṣā under some trees, so they [told the bhikṣus, and the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha. The Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to observe varṣā under trees if the trees are taller than a human being and their leaves are sufficient to shelter your seat.”
  57. Once, the group of six bhikṣus applied beeswax to a tent14 and sat in it to observe varṣā. They thought to themselves, “We will spend the night in the tent and hide it in the daytime. When people see this, they will think we have attained supernormal powers.” The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I do not allow you to apply beeswax to a tent and observe varṣā in it. You also should not change your normal deportment in order to receive praise.”
  58. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to observe varṣā inside a small hut. The bhikṣus told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow the bhikṣus to observe varṣā in a small hut, [as long as] when you stand up [inside] you do not hit your head, when you sit down there is enough room for your knees, and it can shelter you from the rain.”
  59. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to observe varṣā in a mountain cave. [The bhikṣus] then went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to observe varṣā in a mountain cave, [as long as] when you stand up [inside] you do not hit your head, when you sit down there is enough room for your knees, and it can shelter you from the rain.”
  60. Once a bhikṣu wished to observe varṣā in a mountain cave [out] in nature.15 Then the bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow bhikṣus to observe varṣā in a mountain cave [out] in nature, [as long as] when you stand up [inside] you do not hit your head, when you sit down there is enough room for your knees, and it can shelter you from the rain.”
  61. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to observe varṣā in the hollow of a tree. The bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow the bhikṣus to observe varṣā in the hollow of a tree, [as long as] when you stand up [inside] you do not hit your head, when you sit down there is enough room for your knees, and it can shelter you from the rain.”
  62. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to rely on a cowherd [for support] to observe varṣā. [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to rely on a cowherd [for support] to observe varṣā. During varṣā [if he] relocates, you should follow the cowherd where he goes.”
  63. At one time, some bhikṣus wished to rely on a short-term sesame oil maker [for support] to observe varṣā. [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to rely on a sesame oil maker [for support] to observe varṣā. During varṣā [if he] relocates, you should follow the sesame oil maker where he goes.”
  64. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to observe varṣā on a boat. [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow the bhikṣus to observe varṣā on a boat. During varṣā [if the boat] relocates, you should follow the boat where it goes.”
  65. At one time, a bhikṣu wished to rely on a woodcutter [for support] to observe varṣā. [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow the bhikṣus to rely on a woodcutter [for support] to observe varṣā. During varṣā [if he] relocates, you should follow the woodcutter where he goes.”
  66. Once, a bhikṣu wished to rely on a lay community [for support] to observe varṣā. [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to rely on a lay community [for support] to observe varṣā. During varṣā if the community splits into two groups, you should follow and stay with those who offer you sufficient requisites. During varṣā [if the group supporting you] relocates, you should follow them where they go.”
  67. [Receiving a seven-day leave]

  68. At one time, a donor invited a bhikṣu, saying, “I wish to make offerings to you at my house.” The bhikṣu thought, “His residence is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave for such a matter before.” The bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave.16 You should not receive a seven-day leave solely for the sake of [accepting] food and drink. [You may receive a seven-day leave] for other matters, such as to [accept] robes, alms bowls, sitting mats, needle containers, or medicines. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”17
  69. At one time, some bhikṣus invited other senior bhikṣus to come as they had committed remainders (saṃghāvaśeṣa) and wished to be granted probation (parivāsa), restarting (mulāya-paṭikassana), penance (mānatva), and rehabilitation (abhyāyana).”18 The [invited] bhikṣus thought, “Their residence is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave for such a matter before.” The bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “In such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  70. At one time, bhikṣuṇīs invited senior bhikṣus to come as they had committed remainders and wished to be granted penance and rehabilitation.”19 These bhikṣus thought, “Their residence is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  71. At one time, śikṣamāṇās invited senior bhikṣus to come, saying they had transgressed their precepts and wished to confess, repent, and receive the ordination again;20 or receive the full ordination.” These bhikṣus thought, “Their residence is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  72. At one time, a śrāmaṇera invited senior bhikṣus to come as he wished to receive the full ordination. These bhikṣus thought, “His residence is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  73. At one time, a śrāmaṇerī invited venerable bhikṣus to come as she wished to receive the six trainings.” These bhikṣus thought, “Her residence is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  74. At one time, a high official without faith or delight [in the Dharma] invited a venerable bhikṣu to come as he wished to meet him. The bhikṣu thought, “His residence is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day, regardless of whether the meeting was beneficial or not.”
  75. At one time, a high official with faith invited a venerable bhikṣu to come as he wished to meet him. The bhikṣu thought, “His residence is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. If an upāsaka (lay Buddhist) with faith and delight [in the Dharma] is sick or has worries and troubles, and [you leave] in order to benefit and support him, you should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  76. At one time, parents without faith or delight [in the Dharma] invited a venerable bhikṣu to come as they wished to meet him. The bhikṣu thought, “Their residence is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. If they do not have faith or delight [in the Dharma], teach and encourage them to have faith and delight [in the Dharma]. If they [follow] nonvirtuous principles, teach and encourage them to keep ethical precepts. If they are stingy, teach and encourage them to be generous. If they lack wisdom, teach and encourage them to develop wisdom. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  77. At one time, parents with faith and delight [in the Dharma] invited a venerable bhikṣu to come as they wished to meet him. The bhikṣu thought, “Their residence is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. If parents with faith and delight [in the Dharma] are sick or have worries and troubles, and [you leave] to do things that will benefit them, you should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  78. At one time, a mother invited a venerable bhikṣu [who was her son] to come as she wished to meet him. The bhikṣu thought, “Her residence is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day. At other times if a father requests a bhikṣu [to come], the same [seven-day leave] applies, likewise for siblings, relatives and friends.”
  79. At one time, there was a bhikṣu who recited 60 sūtras, such as the Brahmā’s Net Sūtra. He wished to travel about to seek others to recite sutras with him. The bhikṣu thought, “Their residences are far away and I will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  80. At one time, a bhikṣu in charge of manual labor had to go into the woods to carry out some tasks. The bhikṣu thought, “That place is far away and I will not be able to return within the same day.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  81. At one time [during the rule of] King Prasenajit, the people of the border region rebelled, and the king himself led the army to quell the rebellion. A high-ranking official without faith or delight [in the Dharma] then seized and refused to give the robes, blankets, food, drink, and other necessities that the king had offered to the Buddha and the saṅgha. Some bhikṣus wished to go to the king [to report this], but they thought, “The king’s palace is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  82. At one time [during the rule of] King Prasenajit, the people of the border region rebelled, and the king himself led the army to quell the rebellion. A high-ranking official without faith or delight [in the Dharma], who harbored jealousy and had a nonvirtuous mind, wished to have a ditch dug through Jetavana. Some bhikṣus wished to go to the king [to report this], but they thought, “The king’s palace is far away and we will not be able to return within the same day. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” [The bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive a seven-day leave. You should return by the end of the 7th day.”
  83. At one time, a donor sent a messenger to invite a venerable bhikṣu to come as he wished to make offerings [to the bhikṣu] at his house. The bhikṣu thought, “His residence is far away and I will not be able to return within seven days. The Buddha has not allowed us to leave in such a case before.” He went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “From now on, in such a case, I allow you to receive an ‘over-seven-day leave,’ whether for 15 days or a month. Perform a one-motion one-proclamation karman. You should assign someone who is capable of performing the karman, not on the basis of whether he is senior or junior, nor whether he is familiar or unfamiliar with the vinaya. The assigned person should declare as follows:

    [Motion]: Virtuous saṅgha, please listen. If the saṅgha is ready, may the saṅgha agree that Bhikṣu _____ receives an over-seven-day leave, whether for 15 days or a month, to go outside the territory in order to _____ and then return here for varṣā. This is the motion.

    [Proclamation]: Virtuous saṅgha, please listen. Bhikṣu _____ receives an over-seven-day leave, whether for 15 days or a month, to go outside the territory in order to _____ and then return here for varṣā. Those who agree that Bhikṣu _____ receives an over-seven-day leave, whether for 15 days or a month, to go outside the territory in order to _____, and then return here for varṣā remain silent. Those who do not agree speak up.

    [Conclusion]: Since the saṅgha has shown its silent approval, this bhikṣu saṅgha has agreed that Bhikṣu _____ receives an over-seven-day leave, whether for 15 days or a month, to go outside the territory in order to _____ and then return here for varṣā. This matter will proceed as decided.

  84. The same karman for an over-seven-day leave applies when bhikṣus send a messenger to invite bhikṣus; bhikṣuṇīs, śikṣamāṇās, śrāmaṇeras, śrāmaṇerīs, high officials without or with faith, parents without or with faith, siblings, relatives, and friends invite bhikṣus; a bhikṣu who recites 60 sūtras [seeks fellow reciters]; a bhikṣu has tasks to manage; a high official without faith seizes offerings or [wishes to have] a ditch dug through [a monastery]. In all these cases, carry out the same karman for an over-seven-day leave as above.
  85. [Changing the place of varṣā]

  86. At one time, when the World-honored One was in Kośala, a high official who was a brave, strong, and skillful fighter went to see the Buddha, and out of faith he gave up the home life to practice the [spiritual] path. Then King Udagana said to him, “Why don’t you give up the [spiritual] path? I will give you a wife, property, and wealth that you can use to sustain your life.” The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter obstacles to my pure practice.” Having thought this, he went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  87. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. An unmarried teenage girl came to seduce him, [saying,] “Why don’t you give up the [spiritual] path? I will be your wife.” The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter obstacles to my pure practice.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  88. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. A licentious woman came to seduce him, [saying,] “Can you give up the [spiritual] path? I will be your wife, or you can marry my daughter.” The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter obstacles to my pure practice.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  89. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. A paṇḍaka21 was attached to the bhikṣu and thus urged him several times to engage in impure conduct together. The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter obstacles to my pure practice.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  90. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. There were ghosts and spirits who told the bhikṣu that there was buried treasure there. The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter obstacles to my pure practice.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  91. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. There were ghosts and spirits lying in wait, wishing to take the bhikṣu’s life. The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter life-threatening obstacles.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  92. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. There were thieves lying in wait, wishing to take the bhikṣu’s life. The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, my life will surely be ended.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  93. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. Angry poisonous snakes lay in wait, wishing to take the bhikṣu’s life. The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter life-threatening obstacles.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  94. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. Some fierce wild animals lay in wait, wishing to take the bhikṣu’s life. The bhikṣu thought, “If I observe varṣā here, I will encounter life-threatening obstacles.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  95. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling where he was unable to obtain satisfactory food and drink, nor medicine, nor helpers as he required. The bhikṣu wondered what he should do. He then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If a bhikṣu at a varṣā abode is unable to obtain food and drink, medicine, or helpers as he requires, then he should leave due to such an obstacle.”
  96. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. This bhikṣu was accustomed to practicing walking meditation, but there were many poisonous insects along his walking meditation route. Walking meditation calmed his body, while not doing walking meditation made him restless. The bhikṣu thought, “If I stay here, I will encounter life-threatening obstacles.” Having thought this, he [told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus] went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If such an obstacle occurs, you should leave.”
  97. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. He saw some bhikṣus engaging in actions with the intention to create a schism in the saṅgha. The bhikṣu thought, “Creating a schism in the saṅgha is a serious matter and a heinous nonvirtue. I do not want them to create a schism in the saṅgha because of me.22 What should I do?” He then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus reported this to the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “Suppose a bhikṣu observing varṣā in a dwelling sees some bhikṣus striving in actions with the intention to create a schism in the saṅgha. Then if the bhikṣu thinks to himself, ‘Creating a schism in the saṅgha is a serious matter and a heinous nonvirtue. I do not want them to create a schism in the saṅgha because of me,’ that bhikṣu should then leave due to this matter.”
  98. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. He saw some bhikṣuṇīs striving in actions with the intention to create a schism in the saṅgha. The bhikṣu thought, “Creating a schism in the saṅgha is a serious matter and a heinous nonvirtue. I do not want them to create a schism in the saṅgha because of me.” He should then leave due to this matter.
  99. Suppose a bhikṣu is observing varṣā in a dwelling and hears some bhikṣus striving in actions with the intention to create a schism in the saṅgha. The bhikṣu thinks, “Creating a schism in the saṅgha is a serious matter and a heinous nonvirtue. I do not want them to create schism in the saṅgha because of me.” He should then leave due to this matter.
  100. Suppose a bhikṣu is observing varṣā in a dwelling and hears some bhikṣuṇīs intending to act to create a schism in the saṅgha. The bhikṣu thinks, “Creating a schism in the saṅgha is a serious matter and a heinous negative action. I do not want them to create a schism in the saṅgha because of me.” He should then leave due to this matter.
  101. At one time, a bhikṣu was observing varṣā in a dwelling. He heard some bhikṣus intending to act to create a schism in the saṅgha. The bhikṣu thought, “If I approach, advise, and reprimand them, they will heed what I say and this will prevent a schism in the saṅgha.” Later, the bhikṣu reconsidered, “If I approach them alone, they may not heed what I say and this will not prevent a schism in the saṅgha. However, I have close friends who can prevent a schism in the saṅgha. If I speak to them, they will definitely agree to help me to prevent a schism in the saṅgha. What should I do?” He then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “Suppose a bhikṣu observing varṣā in a dwelling hears some bhikṣus intending to act to create a schism in the saṅgha. If the bhikṣu thinks, ‘If I approach them alone, advise, and reprimand them, they will listen to me and this will prevent a schism in the saṅgha,’ but later, the bhikṣu reconsiders, ‘I may not be able to settle their dispute. I have close friends who can settle their dispute. I will speak to them to help to prevent a schism in the saṅgha.’ He should then leave for this purpose.
  102. Suppose a bhikṣu is observing varṣā in a dwelling and hears some bhikṣuṇīs striving in actions with the intention to create a schism in the saṅgha. The bhikṣu thinks, “If I approach, advise, and reprimand them, they will heed what I say and this will prevent a schism in the saṅgha.” Later, the bhikṣu reconsiders, “I may not be able to [prevent a schism in the saṅgha], but I have close friends who can settle their dispute. If I speak to them, they will definitely agree to help me to prevent a schism in the saṅgha.” He should then leave for this purpose.
  103. Suppose a bhikṣu is observing varṣā and hears about a schism [that has occurred] in a [bhikṣu] saṅgha. The bhikṣu thinks, “If I approach, advise, and reprimand them, they will listen to me and this will bring the saṅgha back into harmony.” Later, the bhikṣu reconsiders, “I may not be able [to bring the saṅgha back into harmony], but I have close friends who can settle their dispute. If I speak to them, they will definitely agree to help me to bring the saṅgha back into harmony.” The bhikṣu should then leave for this purpose.
  104. Suppose a bhikṣu is observing varṣā and hears about a schism [that has occurred] in a bhikṣuṇī saṅgha. The bhikṣu thinks, “If I approach, advise, and reprimand them, they will listen to me and this will bring the saṅgha back into harmony.” Later, the bhikṣu reconsiders, “I may not be able [to bring the saṅgha back into harmony]. I have close friends who can settle their dispute, if I speak to them, they will definitely agree to help me to bring the saṅgha back into harmony.” The bhikṣu should then leave for this purpose.
  105. [Overstaying a seven-day leave]

  106. At one time, a bhikṣu received a seven-day leave to go outside the territory, and stayed for the sake of his mother. By the time he wished to return, it was too late to do so by the end of the 7th day. He wondered whether he could count or would lose the [varṣā as one of his ordination] years. He then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “He will not lose the [varṣā as one of his ordination] years. The same applies to parents, brothers, sisters, former wives, or former mistresses, or if there are obstacles from yakṣas (nature spirits), ghosts, and spirits.”
  107. At one time, a bhikṣu received a seven-day leave to go and stay outside the territory, but water and land routes were blocked, or there were obstacles from thieves, wolves, tigers, and lions, [so he was unable to return in time]. He wondered whether he could count or would lose the [varṣā as one of his ordination] years. He then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “He will not lose the [varṣā as one of his ordination] years.”
  108. [Breach of agreement to a donor’s invitation]

  109. At one time, the Buddha was in Ghoṣitārāma in Kauśāmbī. King Udagana and Upananda, son of the Śakyas, were close friends, so King Udagana invited Upananda to observe varṣā in Kauśāmbī. Upananda did so, but upon hearing that there were great offerings of material supplies and robes in another place, he left and resided there briefly before returning to Kauśāmbī. King Udagana heard about this and complained, “Why did Upananda, son of the Śakyas, accept my invitation to observe varṣā here, but upon hearing that there were great offerings of material supplies and robes in another place, leave and reside there briefly before returning?”
  110. The bhikṣus heard [about this]. Among them, those who had few desires and were content, observed ascetic practices, had integrity and consideration for others, and delighted in learning the precepts, reprimanded Upananda, son of the Śakyas, “How could you observe varṣā in one place, but upon hearing that there were great offerings of material supplies and robes in another place, leave and reside there briefly before returning?”
  111. Then [the bhikṣus] went to the Buddha, bowed at his feet, and each sat to one side. They fully reported this matter to the World-honored One. Due to this matter, the World-honored One assembled the bhikṣu saṅgha and reprimanded Upananda through countless expedient means. “You are ignorant, not [behaving in line with] deportment, nor pure conduct, nor the practices of renunciants, nor conduct that follows [the path to liberation]. You should not behave in this way. Why, Upananda, did you observe varṣā in Kauśāmbī, but upon hearing that there were great offerings of material supplies and robes in another place, leave and reside there briefly before returning?” Having reprimanded Upananda, the Buddha said to the bhikṣus, “If a bhikṣu observing early varṣā in one place hears there are great offerings of material supplies and robes in another place and then leaves for that place, this bhikṣu may not count the early varṣā [in his ordination years], and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.”
  112. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā at a particular place. He goes outside the territory, does poṣadha, and then goes to another place. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  113. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. After doing poṣadha outside the territory, he arrives at the place where he was invited, but leaves that day to return [to where he came from]. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  114. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. After doing poṣadha outside the territory, he arrives at the place where he was invited, and accepts lodgings and bedding. Without any [valid] reason, he leaves. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  115. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. After doing poṣadha outside the territory, he arrives at the dwelling. He receives a seven-day leave to go outside the territory. He wishes to return but stays for over seven days. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  116. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. After doing poṣadha outside the territory, he arrives at the dwelling. He receives a seven-day leave to go outside the territory and returns by the end of the 7th day. That bhikṣu’s early varṣā is valid and he does not commit any offense as he did not breach [his agreement to] the original request.
  117. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. After doing poṣadha outside the territory, he arrives at the dwelling. In the last seven days before the end of varṣā, he receives a seven-day leave to go outside the territory. Whether that bhikṣu returns to the dwelling or not, his early varṣā is valid and he does not commit any offense as he did not breach [his agreement to] the original request.
  118. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. He arrives inside the territory and after doing poṣadha goes to the dwelling, but leaves that day to return [to where he came from]. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  119. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. He arrives inside the territory and after doing poṣadha goes to the dwelling, and accepts lodgings and bedding. Without any [valid] reason, he leaves. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  120. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. He arrives inside the territory and after doing poṣadha goes to the dwelling. He receives a seven-day leave to go outside the territory. He wishes to return but is unable to do so by the end of the 7th day. That bhikṣu breaks [the rule to observe] early varṣā and commits an offense due to breaching [his agreement to] the original request.
  121. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. He arrives inside the territory and after doing poṣadha goes to the dwelling. He receives a seven-day leave to go outside the territory and returns by the end of the 7th day. That bhikṣu does not break [the rule to observe] early varṣā and does not commit any offense as he did not breach [his agreement to] the original request.
  122. Suppose a bhikṣu accepts someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. After doing poṣadha inside the territory, he goes to the dwelling. In the last seven days before the end of varṣā, he receives a seven-day leave to go outside the territory. Whether he returns to the dwelling or not, he does not break [the rule to observe] early varṣā and does not commit any offense as he did not breach [his agreement to] the original request. The same applies if he observes later varṣā.
  123. At one time, a bhikṣu accepted someone’s invitation to observe early varṣā. However, at [the donor’s place], the bhikṣu saw that there were life-threatening obstacles or obstacles to pure practice. He wondered what he should do. He then told the bhikṣus, the bhikṣus went and told the Buddha, and the Buddha said, “If a bhikṣu observing early or later varṣā in a dwelling sees that there are life-threatening obstacles or obstacles to pure practice, this bhikṣu should either go himself or send a messenger to tell his donor and request to move. If the donor agrees, that is good; if not, he should leave.”

  1. The climate in India has only three seasons: spring, summer (the rainy season), and winter. 

  2. In particular, the Jains believed that plants were sentient beings. 

  3. Laypeople are not supposed to criticize the saṅgha. Anyone who causes them to do so causes them to create nonvirtue. 

  4. The Dharmaguptaka Vinaya says, “In the spring and winter, there are four kinds of vinaya master one should rely on: one who can recite (1) the precepts till the 30th [rule], (2) the precepts till the 90th [rule], (3) the [entire] bhikṣus’ precepts, (4) the precepts of the two saṅghas. Many conditions arise during the summer, therefore the vinaya master must be skillful and knowledgeable to deal with them. One should rely on the fifth kind of vinaya master, one who can extensively recite the precepts of the two saṅghas.” (VM Daoxuan, Guidelines for Practicing Vinaya (Xing Shi Chao), T.40.1804, p. 39b18. Also see T.22.1428, p.1004b21-28 for the original text.)  

  5. There are three types of individual transactions: actual individual transactions, individual transactions in place of one-to-one transactions, and individual transactions in place of saṅghakarman. The latter two are carried out when there are not enough bhikṣu/ṇīs. The individual transaction of entering varṣā is an individual transaction in place of one-to-one transaction. Bhikṣunīs do not do an individual transaction in this situation, because they cannot live alone. There should always be another bhikṣuṇī present with whom they can do a one-to-one transaction. 

  6. A new day begins at dawn [not at midnight]. If the bhikṣus were supposed to arrive on the 16th for varṣā and they arrive after dawn the next day, they are late. 

  7. Dwellings built and offered to the saṅgha for the varṣā. 

  8. The vinaya mentions “incoming bhikṣus”—those who just arrive at a place—and “residing bhikṣus”—those who are already staying at the place. Residing bhikṣus are not permanent residents; during the Buddha’s time all monks were wanderers outside of the rainy season. 

  9. The bhikṣu in charge of constructing or repairing the lodgings. He can choose his room first as a reward for his efforts. (Annotated explanation by Venerable Xuecheng in the Annotated Edition of Guidelines for Practicing Vinaya by VM Daoxuan published by Longquan Monastery, Vol. 2, p. 445)  

  10. According to the Pāli Vinaya Commentary, monastics should not tread on lodgings (including beds) with unwashed or wet feet. (Buddhist Monastic Code II, 3rd Ed. revised 2013, PDF p. 70) The purpose of the rule set out in paragraph 31 seems to be to protect the assembly’s bedding from getting dirty. 

  11. This paragraph appears after paragraph 37 in the original Chinese text. 

  12. Paragraphs 38 and 39 appear in reverse order in the original Chinese text.  

  13. Pravāraṇā is an important monastic rite held at the end of the varṣā providing a forum for all residing monastics to invite critical peer feedback and redress any offenses that have been seen, heard, or suspected by their bhikṣu/ṇī peers during that period. 

  14. To make the tent waterproof. 

  15. This is deeper in the wilderness than the mountain cave mentioned in paragraph 54. 

  16. This is done through a one-to-one transaction. 

  17. The day a monastic departs is the first day of the leave. The monastic must return before the dawn of the 8th day. 

  18. If a bhikṣu has concealed a remainder, he has to undergo a period of probation for the number of days the offense was concealed. After that, he does one week of penance. If he commits another remainder during the time of probation or penance, he has to restart the period of probation or penance. When penance is complete, he requests rehabilitation, which is done with a saṅgha of 20 bhikṣus. 

  19. Bhikṣuṇīs do not undergo probation. The penance period is two weeks. If she commits another remainder while doing penance, she has to restart the period of penance. Rehabilitation is done with 20 bhikṣus and 20 bhikṣuṇīs. 

  20. If a śikṣamāṇā transgresses any one of the six trainings, she has to retake the śikṣamāṇā ordination. Technically, bhikṣus do not give the śikṣamāṇā ordination. The cases in paragraphs 65 and 67 appear to be exceptions that occurred during varṣā. 

  21. There are various types of paṇḍakas; one is a eunuch. 

  22. In Guidelines for Practicing Vinaya, VM Daoxuan summarizes the situations in paragraphs 90-93 as, “There are those observing varṣā in the same territory who get into a conflict because of me [i.e. the bhikṣu who leaves].” 

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