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Upāli was one of the most intelligent and renowned followers…

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Ajahn Jayasāro's Yellow Pages Teaching

Saturday, April 11, 2021

Twice weekly handwritten Dhamma teaching by Ajahn.
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Upāli was one of the most intelligent and renowned followers of the Jains. He was so confident of his faith in the Jain teachings that he decided to debate the Buddha. He was determined to prove, once and for all, that the Buddha's teachings on kamma were incorrect. In fact, the Buddha was able to prove to Upāli that it was his own understanding that was full of inconsistencies.

 

Filled with joy and inspiration in the Buddha, Upāli requested the Three Refuges. The Buddha responded that Upāli was a very well-known figure in society and that he should take his time to think it over before taking such a big step. Upāli was even more inspired by these words and repeated his request a second time. Now, the Buddha reminded him that his family had been important supporters of the Jain monastics for a long time. If he became Buddhist he should not stop offering them alms. Once more, the Buddha's words brought joy to Upāli's heart. On his third request, the Buddha agreed.

 

The Buddha always encouraged the monks to observe him closely, to check whether he truly embodied the teachings. On this occasion he demonstrated a number of key traits: He was willing and able to defend his teachings from the most articulate and aggressive opponents. He did not seek to convert those affiliated with other religions, and indeed cautioned those who decided to become Buddhist in a flood of emotion, to stop and consider their decision in a calmer state of mind. He encouraged new Buddhists to continue to treat members of their former faiths with generosity and kindness.

 

- Ajahn Jayasāro

(no human translation)

(no human translation)

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