Study and Research Section

Commentary on the Mahaaraahulovaadasutta

Part XII : Section A

Relevant sutta passage: "Metta.m, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. Metta˝hi te, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato yo byaapaado so pahiiyissati. Karu.na.m, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. Karu.na˝hi te, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato yaa vihesaa saa pahiiyissati. Mudita.m, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. Mudita˝hi te, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato yaa arati saa pahiiyissati. Upekkha.m, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. Upekkha˝hi te, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato yo pa.tigho so pahiiyissati. Asubha.m, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. Asubha˝hi te, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato yo raago so pahiiyissati. Aniccasa˝˝a.m, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavehi. Aniccasa˝˝a˝hi te, Raahula, bhaavana.m bhaavayato yo asmimaano so pahiiyissati.

"Cultivate, Rahula, the mental development of loving kindness. For you who are cultivating the mental development of loving kindness, that which is malevolence will be abandoned. Cultivate, Rahula, the mental development of compassion. For you who are cultivating the mental development of compassion, that which is harming will be abandoned. Cultivate, Rahula, the mental development of sympathetic joy. For you who are cultivating the mental development of sympathetic joy, that which is dislike will be abandoned. Cultivate, Rahula, the mental development of equanimity. For you who are cultivating the mental development of equanimity, that which is anger will be abandoned.

"Cultivate, Rahula, the mental development of foulness (of a body). For you who are cultivating the mental development of foulness, that which is attachment will be abandoned. Cultivate, Rahula, the mental development that is the perception of impermanence. For you who are cultivating the mental development that is the perception of impermanence, that which is the conceit of 'I am' will be abandoned.


1. Words:

  • kasmaa: why.
  • aarabhati: to begin.
  • dassana.m: the seeing, explanation.
  • kaara.na: the reason.
  • akaara.na: with the absence of a reason, condition.
  • he.t.thaa; below, before.
  • taadibhaava: of such nature (of the arahat).
  • ucca: high, noble.
  • kula: clan, family.
  • pasuta: engaged in (belonging to).
  • bahussuto: who has heard much.
  • laabhii: who has possessions.
  • mahaamaato: minister.
  • bhajati: associate with.
  • homi, (from hoti): I am.
  • koci: whoever.
  • desanaa: teaching, discourse.
  • dasseti: to show, explain.

Commentary:
metta.m raahulaati kasmaa aarabhi? taadibhaavassa kaara.nadassanattha.m.
As to the phrase, mettaa raahulaa, (develop loving kindness, Rahula) why did he begin (with these words)? In order to explain the condition for "such nature" (of the arahat).

he.t.thaa hi taadibhaavalakkha.na.m dassita.m,
Before, the characteristic of "such nature" was explained,

na ca sakkaa aha.m taadii homiiti akaara.naa bhavitu.m,
but it is not possible to develop "such nature" when there are no conditions for being so;

napi "aha.m uccaakulappasuto bahussuto laabhii,
nor when one thinks, "I am belonging to a noble family, I have heard much and I am wealthy,

ma.m raajaraajamahaamattaadayo bhajanti, aha.m taadii homii"ti
the king, his ministers and so on associate with me",

imehi kaara.nehi koci taadii naama hoti,
someone cannot be called "of such nature" because of these reasons.

mettaadibhaavanaaya pana hotiiti
However, one can be "of such nature" by the development of loving-kindness and so on.

taadibhaavassa kaara.nadassanattha.m ima.m desana.m aarabhi.
Therefore, the Buddha began this teaching (of metta) in order to explain the condition for being of "such nature".

English:
As to the phrase, mettaa raahulaa, (develop loving kindness, Rahula) why did he begin (with these words)? In order to explain the condition for "I am of such nature" (of the arahat). Before, the characteristic of "such nature" was explained, but it is not possible to develop "such nature" when there are no conditions for being so; nor when one thinks, "I am belonging to a noble family, I have heard much and I am wealthy, the king, his ministers and so on associate with me", someone cannot be called "of such nature" because of these reasons. However, one can be "of such nature" by the development of loving-kindness and so on. Therefore, the Buddha began this teaching (of metta) in order to explain the condition for being of "such nature".


2. Words:

  • paapeti: cause to attain (paapu.nati).
  • byaapaado: malevolence.
  • upacaara: access concentration (a high degree of concentration and calm, developed in samatha).
  • appanaa: attainment concentration (calm that has reached the degree of jhaana or absorption).
  • kopo: anger.
  • pajahati: abandon (pahiiyissati: passive).
  • vihesaa: vexation, injury.
  • vihi.msaa: cruelty, injury.
  • paa.ni: hand.
  • arati: dislike, discontent.
  • pantasenaasana: secluded lodging.
  • ukka.n.thita: dissatisfied, (ukka.n.thati).
  • pa.tigho: aversion, sensory reaction.
  • pa.tiha~n~nati: to be struck against, to be afflicted.
  • uddhumataka: swollen, bloated.
  • kaamagu.na: sensual pleasure.
  • asmimaana: conceit of "I am".

Commentary:
tattha bhaavayatoti upacaara.m vaa appana.m vaa paapentassa.
Here, as regards the expression, for you who are developing, this means: for you who are developing the conditions for reaching access concentration or attainment concentration.

yo byaapaadoti yo satte kopo, so pahiiyissati.
As to the words, what is malevolence, this means: what is anger towards a being, that will be abandoned.

vihesaati paa.niaadiihi sattaana.m vihi.msana.m.
As to the word, vexation, this is injuring living beings with one's hands and so on.

aratiiti pantasenaasanesu ceva adhikusaladhammesu ca ukka.n.thitataa.
As to the word aversion, this is dissatisfaction with regard to secluded lodgings and superior qualities.

pa.tighoti yattha katthaci sattesu sa`nkhaaresu ca pa.tiha~n~nanakileso.
As to the word anger, this refers to the defilements that cause disturbance everywhere with regard to beings and events.

asubhanti uddhumaatakaadiisu upacaarappana.m.
As to the word foulness, this refers to access concentration and attainment concentration by means of a bloated corpse and so on.

uddhumaatakaadiisu asubhabhaavanaa ca naamesaa vitthaarato visuddhimagge kathitaava. 
With regard to the bloated corpse etc. , the development of the meditation on foulness has been explained in detail in the Visuddhimagga.

raagoti pa~ncakaamagu.nikaraago.
As to the word attachment, this is attachment with regard to the five objects of sensual pleasure.

aniccasa~n~nanti aniccaanupassanaaya sahajaatasa~n~na.m.
As to the expression, perception of impermanence, this refers to perception that arises together with contemplation of impermanence.

vipassanaa eva vaa esaa asa~n~naapi sa~n~naasiisena sa~n~naati vuttaa.
Or, just insight; although this is not perception, it is called perception because it is under the heading of perception.

asmimaanoti ruupaadiisu asmiiti maano.
As to the words "conceit of I am", this is conceit of "I am" in materiality and so on.

English:
Here, as regards the expression, for you who are developing, this means: for you who are developing the conditions for reaching access concentration or attainment concentration.

As to the words, what is malevolence, this means: what is anger towards a being,

As to the word, vexation, this is injuring living beings with one's hands and so on.

As to the word aversion, this is dissatisfaction with regard to secluded lodgings and superior qualities.

As to the word anger, this refers to the defilements that cause disturbance everywhere with regard to beings and events.

As to the word foulness, this refers to access concentration and attainment concentration by means of a bloated corpse and so on. With regard to the bloated corpse etc., the development of the meditation on foulness has been explained in detail in the Visuddhimagga.

As to the word attachment, this is attachment with regard to the five objects of sensual pleasure.

As to the expression, perception of impermanence, this refers to perception that arises together with contemplation of impermanence. Or, just insight; although this is not perception, it is called perception because it is under the heading of perception.

As to the words "conceit of I am", this is conceit of "I am" in materiality and so on.

In this book

Introduction

Part 1:
Section a
Section b
Section c
Section d
Section e
Part 2:
Section a
Part 6:
Section a
Part 7:
Section a
Part 11:
Section a
Part 12:
Section a
Part 13:
Section a

Conclusion