Nekkhamma

Nekkhamma (Sanskrit: Naiṣkramya, नैष्काम्य) is a Pali word generally translated as "renunciation" or "the pleasure of renunciation" while also conveying more specifically "giving up the world and leading a holy life" or "freedom from lust, craving and desires."[1] In Buddhism's Noble Eightfold Path, nekkhamma is the first practice associated with "Right Intention." In the Theravada list of ten perfections, nekkhamma is the third practice of "perfection." It involves non-attachment (detachment).

Buddhist
Perfections
 
10 pāramīs
dāna
sīla
nekkhamma
paññā
viriya
khanti
sacca
adhiṭṭhāna
mettā
upekkhā
   
6 pāramitās
dāna
sīla
kṣānti
vīrya
dhyāna
prajñā
 
Colored items are in both lists.

In the Pali literature

Renunciation as right intention

In the Pali Canon, in a discourse in which the Buddha describes antecedents precipitating his Awakening, the Buddha divided his thoughts between those that impair discernment, cause affliction and deter one from Nirvana on the one hand, and those that have the opposite effect.[2] In the former category, he included thoughts permeated with sensuality, ill-will and harmfulness; in the latter, thoughts permeated with renunciation, non-ill will and harmlessness:

"Whatever a monk keeps pursuing with his thinking & pondering, that becomes the inclination of his awareness. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with renunciation, abandoning thinking imbued with sensuality, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with renunciation. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with non-ill will, abandoning thinking imbued with ill will, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with non-ill will. If a monk keeps pursuing thinking imbued with harmlessness, abandoning thinking imbued with harmfulness, his mind is bent by that thinking imbued with harmlessness."[3]

These latter three types of thought content — renunciation, non-ill will and harmlessness — comprise the traditional triadic definition of the Noble Eightfold Path's notion of "Right Intention" (Pali: sammā-saṅkappa; Skt.: samyak-saṃkalpa).[4] For each of the former types of thought content — sensuality, ill will and harmfulness — the Buddha stated:

"Whenever thinking imbued with sensuality [or ill will or harmfulness] had arisen, I simply abandoned it, destroyed it, dispelled it, wiped it out of existence."[5]

Renunciation vs. sensuality

Elsewhere in the Canon,[6] the Buddha more finely juxtaposes the pursuit of thoughts regarding sensuality (kāma) and those regarding renunciation (nekkhamma):[7]

"There is the case where the mind of a monk, when attending to sensual pleasures, doesn't leap up at sensual pleasures, doesn't grow confident, steadfast, or released in sensual pleasures. But when attending to renunciation, his mind leaps up at renunciation, grows confident, steadfast, & released in renunciation. When his mind is rightly-gone, rightly developed, has rightly risen above, gained release, and become disjoined from sensual pleasures, then whatever fermentations, torments, & fevers there are that arise in dependence on sensuality, he is released from them. He does not experience that feeling. This is expounded as the escape from sensual pleasures."[8]

Renunciation as a bodhisatta practice

As indicated above, in a Pali discourse, the Buddha identified renunciation as part of his path to Awakening. In the Buddhavamsa, Jataka tales and exegetical literature, renunciation is codified as the third of ten practices of "perfection" (pāramī).[9]

Contemporary elaborations

Renunciation's benefit

Bodhi (1999) elaborates on the various and ultimate benefits of Buddhist renunciation:

"Contemplating the dukkha inherent in desire is one way to incline the mind to renunciation. Another way is to contemplate directly the benefits flowing from renunciation. To move from desire to renunciation is not, as might be imagined, to move from happiness to grief, from abundance to destitution. It is to pass from gross, entangling pleasures to an exalted happiness and peace, from a condition of servitude to one of self-mastery. Desire ultimately breeds fear and sorrow, but renunciation gives fearlessness and joy. It promotes the accomplishment of all three stages of the threefold training: it purifies conduct, aids concentration, and nourishes the seed of wisdom. The entire course of practice from start to finish can in fact be seen as an evolving process of renunciation culminating in Nibbana [Pali; Skt: Nirvana] as the ultimate stage of relinquishment, 'the relinquishing of all foundations of existence' (sabb'upadhipatinissagga)."[10]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Rhys Davids & Stede (1921-25), p. 377, entry for "Nekkhamma" (retrieved 2008-04-12). Rhys Davids & Stede speculate that the Sanskrit term with which nekkhamma is associated is either:
  2. ^ Dvedhavitakka Sutta (MN 19) (Thanissaro, 1997).
  3. ^ Thanissaro (1997). Those familiar with the Dhammapada will recognize this passage bears a resemblance to the opening passages of that text.
  4. ^ Thanissaro (1996).
  5. ^ Thanissaro (1997).
  6. ^ For instance, in the Nissaraniya Sutta (AN 5.200) (Thanissaro, 2000).
  7. ^ Rhys Davids & Stede (1921-25), p. 377, entry for "Nekkhamma" (retrieved 2 Jul 2007), suggests that the connection between sensuality and renunciation is underscored by alliterative word play (between kāma and nekkhamma) in the Canon.
  8. ^ Thanissaro (2000).
  9. ^ Buddhavamsa, chapter 2. For an on-line regarding the Buddhavamsa and parami, see Bodhi (2005). In terms of other examples in the Pali literature, Rhys Davids & Stede (1921-25), p. 454, entry for "Pāramī," (retrieved 2 Jul 2007) cites Jataka i.73 and Dhammapada-Atthakatha i.84. Bodhi (2005) also mentions Acariya Dhammapala's treatise in the Cariyapitaka-Atthakatha and the Brahmajala Sutta subcommentary (tika).
  10. ^ Bodhi (1999), ch. 3.

Sources

  • Bodhi, Bhikkhu (ed.) (1978, 2005). A Treatise on the Paramis: From the Commentary to the Cariyapitaka by Acariya Dhammapala (The Wheel, No. 409/411). Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society. Retrieved 30 Jun 2007 from "Access to Insight" at http://accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/bodhi/wheel409.html.
  • Bodhi, Bhikkhu (1984, 1999). The Noble Eightfold Path: The Way to the End of Suffering (The Wheel, No. 308/311). Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society. Retrieved from "Access to Insight" at http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/bodhi/waytoend.html.
  • Monier-Williams, Monier (1899, 1964). A Sanskrit-English Dictionary. London: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-864308-X. Retrieved 2008-04-12 from "Cologne University" at http://www.sanskrit-lexicon.uni-koeln.de/scans/MWScan/index.php?sfx=pdf.
  • Rhys Davids, T.W. & William Stede (eds.) (1921-5). The Pali Text Society’s Pali–English Dictionary. Chipstead: Pali Text Society. A general on-line search engine for the PED is available at http://dsal.uchicago.edu/dictionaries/pali/.
  • Thanissaro Bhikkhu (trans.) (1996). Magga-vibhanga Sutta: An Analysis of the Path (SN 45.8). Retrieved 2 Jul 2007 from "Access to Insight" at http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/sn/sn45/sn45.008.than.html.
  • Thanissaro Bhikkhu (trans.) (1997). Dvedhavitakka Sutta: Two Sorts of Thinking (MN 19). Retrieved 2 Jul 2007 from "Access to Insight" at http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.019.than.html.
  • Thanissaro Bhikkhu (trans.) (2000). Nissaraniya Sutta: Leading to Escape (AN 5.200). Retrieved 2 Jul 2007 from "Access to Insight" at http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an05/an05.200.than.html.

External links

Abhidharmadīpa

The Abhidharmadīpa or Lamp of Abhidharma is an Abhidharma text thought to have been authored by Vasumitra as a response to Vasubandhu's Abhidharmakośakārikā.

The text consists of verse and prose commentary. It currently survives as an incomplete collection of Sanskrit fragments. However, the text is valuable insofar as it confirms the identity of Vasubandhu as author of the Abhidharmakośakārikā.

Adhiṭṭhāna

Adhiṭṭhāna (Pali; from adhi meaning "foundational" or "beginning" plus sthā meaning "standing"; Sanskrit, अधिष्ठान) has been translated as "decision," "resolution," "self-determination," "will" and "resolute determination." In the late canonical literature of Theravada Buddhism, adhiṭṭhāna is one of the ten "perfections" (dasa pāramiyo), exemplified by the bodhisatta's resolve to become fully awakened.

Anupubbikathā

In Theravada Buddhism, anupubbikathā or ānupubbikathā (Pali) – variously translated as "gradual discourse," "gradual instruction," "progressive instruction," and "step-by-step talk" – is a method by which the Buddha taught the Dhamma to suitably receptive lay people. In this approach, the Four Noble Truths are the consummate teaching. The common formula is:

Generosity (dāna)

Virtue (sīla)

Heaven (sagga)

Danger of sensual pleasure (kāmānaṃ ādīnava)

Renunciation (nekkhamma)

The Four Noble Truths (cattāri ariya-saccāni)

Assaji

Assaji (Pali: Assaji, Sanskrit: Aśvajit) was one of the first five arahants of Gautama Buddha. He is known for his conversion of Sariputta and Mahamoggallana, the Buddha's two chief male disciples, counterparts to the nuns Khema and Uppalavanna, the chief female disciples. He lived in what is now Uttar Pradesh and Bihar in northern India, during the 6th century BCE.

Buddhism in Venezuela

Buddhism in Venezuela is practiced by over 52,000 people (roughly 0.2% of the population). The Buddhist community is made up mainly of Chinese, Japanese, and Koreans.

Most identify with the Mahayana tradition, reflecting the religious heritage of their emigrant countries.

However, in the mid-1990s Keun-Tshen Goba (né Ezequiel Hernandez Urdaneta), together with Jigme Rinzen, founded a meditation center using the Shambhala Training method.

There are Buddhist centers in Caracas, Maracay, Mérida, Puerto Ordáz, San Felipe, and Valencia.

Detachment (philosophy)

Detachment, also expressed as non-attachment, is a state in which a person overcomes his or her attachment to desire for things, people or concepts of the world and thus attains a heightened perspective. It is considered a wise virtue and is promoted in various Eastern religions, such as Jainism, Taoism and Buddhism.

Dharma talk

A Dharma talk (Sanskrit) or Dhamma talk (Pali) or Dharma sermon (Japanese: 法語 (ほうご, Hōgo), Chinese: 法語) is a public discourse on Buddhism by a Buddhist teacher.In some Zen traditions a Dharma talk may be referred to as a teisho (提唱). However, according to Taizan Maezumi and Bernard Glassman, a teisho is "a formal commentary by a Zen master on a koan or Zen text. In its strictest sense, teisho is non-dualistic and is thus distinguished from a Dharma talk, which is a lecture on a Buddhist topic." In this sense, a teisho is thus a formal Dharma talk. Vietnamese master Thich Nhat Hanh says the following about Dharma talks:

A Dharma talk must always be appropriate in two ways: it must accord perfectly with the spirit of the Dharma and it must also respond perfectly to the situation in which it is given. If it only corresponds perfectly with the teachings but does not meet the needs of the listeners, it's not a good Dharma talk; it's not appropriate.

Kuri (kitchen)

A kuri (庫裏, lit. warehouse behind) or kuin (庫院, lit. warehouse hall) is the kitchen of a Zen monastery, typically located behind the butsuden (or, Buddha Hall). Historically the kuri was a kitchen which prepared meals only for the abbot and his guests, though in modern Japan it now functions as the kitchen and administrative office for the entire monastery.

List of Buddhas

This is a list of historical, contemporary, and legendary figures which at least one school of Buddhism considers to be a Buddha and which have an article on Wikipedia:

Acala

Adi-Buddha

Akshobhya

Amitābha, principal Buddha of Pure Land Buddhism

Amoghasiddhi

Bhaisajyaguru

Budai

Dīpankara Buddha

Five Tathagatas

Gautama Buddha

Kakusandha

Kassapa Buddha

Koṇāgamana Buddha

Lokesvararaja

Nairatmya

Nichiren Daishonin, Buddha of the Latter Day of the Law (Nikko Lineage)

Padumuttara Buddha

Padmasambhava

Ratnasambhava

Satyanama

Sumedha Buddha

Tara

Tonpa Shenrab

Vairocana, embodiment of the Dharmakaya

Vajradhara

Vajrayogini

Yeshe Tsogyal

List of suttas

Suttas from the Sutta Pitaka of the Pali Canon.

List of Digha Nikaya suttas

List of Majjhima Nikaya suttas

List of Samyutta Nikaya suttas

List of Anguttara Nikaya suttas

List of Khuddaka Nikaya suttas

Maraṇasati

Maraṇasati (mindfulness of death, death awareness) is a Buddhist meditation practice that uses various visualization and contemplation techniques to meditate on the nature of death. The cultivation of Maranassati is said to be conducive to right effort and also helps in developing a sense of spiritual urgency (Saṃvega) and renunciation (Nekkhamma).

Prajñā (Buddhism)

Prajñā (Sanskrit) or paññā (Pāli) "wisdom" is insight in the true nature of reality, namely primarily anicca (impermanence), dukkha (dissatisfaction or suffering), and anattā (non-self). In addition, Abhidharma and later Mahāyāna text may include suññatā (Skt; Eng: emptiness).

Pāramitā

Pāramitā (Sanskrit, Pali) or pāramī (Pāli) is "perfection" or "completeness". While, technically, pāramī and pāramitā are both Pāli terms, Pali literature makes far greater reference to pāramī.

Renunciation

Renunciation (or renouncing) is the act of rejecting something, especially if it is something that the renouncer has previously enjoyed or endorsed.

In religion, renunciation often indicates an abandonment of pursuit of material comforts, in the interests of achieving spiritual enlightenment. It is highly practiced in Jainism. In Hinduism, the renounced order of life is sannyāsa; in Buddhism, the Pali word for "renunciation" is nekkhamma, conveying more specifically "giving up the world and leading a holy life" or "freedom from lust, craving and desires". See Sangha, Bhikkhu, Bhikkhuni, Śramaṇa. In Christianity, some denominations have a tradition of renunciation of the Devil.

Legally, renunciation arises in nationality law with the renunciation of citizenship, a formal process by which the renouncer ceases to hold citizenship with a specific country. A person can also renounce property, as when a person submits a disclaimer of interest in property that has been left to them in a will.

Rinpoche

Rinpoche, also spelled Rimboche and Rinboku (Tibetan: རིན་པོ་ཆེ་, Wylie: rin po che, THL: Rinpoché, ZYPY: Rinboqê), is an honorific term used in the Tibetan language. It literally means "precious one", and may be used to refer to a person, place, or thing--like the words "gem" or "jewel" (Sanskrit Ratna).

The word consists of rin(value) and po(nominative suffix) and chen(big).

The word is used in the context of Tibetan Buddhism as a way of showing respect when addressing those recognized as reincarnated, older, respected, notable, learned and/or an accomplished Lamas or teachers of the Dharma. It is also used as an honorific for abbots of monasteries.

Sacca

Sacca (Pāli; Sanskrit Satya) word meaning "real" or "true". In early Buddhist literature, sacca is often found in the context of the "Four Noble Truths", a crystallization of Buddhist wisdom. In addition, sacca is one of the ten pāramitās or "most high" a bodhisatta must develop in order to become a Buddha.

Upekkha

Upekkhā (in Pali: upekkhā उपेक्खा; Sanskrit: upekṣā उपेक्षा), is the Buddhist concept of equanimity. As one of the Brahma Vihara (meditative states), it is a pure mental state cultivated on the Buddhist path to nirvāna.

Vīrya

Vīrya (Sanskrit; Pāli: viriya) is a Buddhist term commonly translated as "energy", "diligence", "enthusiasm", or "effort". It can be defined as an attitude of gladly engaging in wholesome activities, and it functions to cause one to accomplish wholesome or virtuous actions.

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