How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

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How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

Postby James the Giant » Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:44 am

I'm reading the Buddhist Monastic Code, and one thing I haven't been able to get clear is all the offences and what happens as penance or "punishment" with each one.

I understand there are seven levels of transgression or offence... although I'm a little confused here as well, because the lists differ depending on where I look online or in books.
    1 Parajika
    2 Sanghadisesa
    3 Aniyata
    4 Nissaggiya Pacittiya
    5 Pacittiya
    6 Patidesaniya
    7 Dukkata
    8 Dubbhasita
Parajika means you're kicked out of the sangha for the rest of this lifetime. That's simple.

Sanghadisesa means you have to meet with quite a few other monks and confess, and accept a penance agreed on by all of them? How many bhikkhus have to be there, and what kinds of penalties are commonly imposed?
I hear this is a difficult one for monks in western countries, as there usually aren't enough bhikkhus around from the same school, to sort out the sanghadisesa.

Then there is Aniyata, which is "indefinite"... I don't now what that one is about. What happens with that?

I think the remaining ones, Nissaggiya Pacittiya, Pacittiya, Patidesaniya, Dukkata, and Dubbhasitarest... are forfeiture or confession offences, where you can just confess to another single monk who has not committed the same offence? What is the penance commonly imposed for those ones?

Many thanks to anyone who can answer.
With metta
James.
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.
SN 9.11
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Re: How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:51 am

Hi James,
I understand there are seven levels of transgression or offence... although I'm a little confused here as well, because the lists differ depending on where I look online or in books.

the differences are in what the offence type is and how "bad" the offence is. The Patimokkha classifies them in how "bad"/severity of punishment.

Parajika means you're kicked out of the sangha for the rest of this lifetime. That's simple.

Sanghadisesa means you have to meet with quite a few other monks and confess, and accept a penance agreed on by all of them? How many bhikkhus have to be there, and what kinds of penalties are commonly imposed?
I hear this is a difficult one for monks in western countries, as there usually aren't enough bhikkhus around from the same school, to sort out the sanghadisesa.

there needs to be 20 Bhikkhus, if I remember correctly, but the penance is not agreed upon, it is standard. although any Bhikkhu who enters the teritory needs to be confessed to otherwise the days confession is incomplete and an extra day is added upon. this period is 2weeks if I remember(?)

Then there is Aniyata, which is "indefinite"... I don't now what that one is about. What happens with that?

these are to do with perception of a "big offence" no actual offence may of happened yet what can be seen or the situation may leave the mendicant open to critisism or in a situation where they could be tempted....

I think the remaining ones, Nissaggiya Pacittiya, Pacittiya, Patidesaniya, Dukkata, and Dubbhasitarest... are forfeiture or confession offences, where you can just confess to another single monk who has not committed the same offence? What is the penance commonly imposed for those ones?

the Nissaggiya is both forfeiture and confession, and they may or may not get back the forfeited item (depending what it is) although it is an offence not to give back an item which is to be given back. although the others have no actual punishment to my knowledge except for the embarisment of having to share openly the wrongdoing.

P.S., I am going to hunt around for the lists and correlate them
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:37 am

hope this helps a little bit. I pulled these from an old doc so the spelling may be slightly different now (although changed some differences) given a little explanation of the classes by each (in the group of seven)
the 5 classes
pârâgika,
sanghâdisesa,
pâcittiya,
pâtidesaniya,
dukkata

the 7 classes
[list=]pârâgika - dead in the sangha
sanghâdisesa - on life support, can be made healthy again but it takes time.
thullaccaya - Grave offence (not sure of recompense) mainly from incomplete pârâgika & samghâdisesa offences or inappropriate mendicant/monastic attitude. ill but need medicine.
pâcittiya - these are similare to verbal or physical acts that could end up in legal action if done in lay life. I liken these to public order or civil offences (here where I live)
pâtidesaniya - I understand these to be discourteous acts to be accnowledged. discourteous not in a deliberate way as seen in some of the pâcittiya rules but unthoughtful to others needs....
dukkata - fifth in previous list but here an action that is unskilled in some slight way.
dubbhâsita - aspect of fifth in previous list, except the speach version of the above.[/list]
The last three are thoughtless and the pacittiya is deliberate (in simple terms yet not exclusive). the last three are similare to an alcoholic or smoker trying to quit and kidding themselves it is ok to have a drink or smoke.

The Rules
The Pârâgika Rules
The Samghâdisesa Rules
The Aniyata Rules
The Nissaggiya Pâkittiya Rules
The Pâkittiya Rules
The Pâtidesaniya Rules
The Sekhiya Rules - all aspects of the fifth
The Adhikarana-samatha Rules - how to deal with issues.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

Postby James the Giant » Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:52 am

That's great Cittasanto, thank you very much for taking the time to explain that.
Would you happen to know what the penance is for a Sanghadisesa? I seem to remember something about reducing a bhikkhu back to novice level, under dependence again... or something like that.
Cheers and metta
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.
SN 9.11
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Re: How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:32 pm

James the Giant wrote:That's great Cittasanto, thank you very much for taking the time to explain that.
Would you happen to know what the penance is for a Sanghadisesa? I seem to remember something about reducing a bhikkhu back to novice level, under dependence again... or something like that.
Cheers and metta

It is not quite like that.
It is closer (in my mind) to them not being fully of the same community during the period of penance although yes it is similare to them being a novice in some ways. The period is decided upon by the sangha, and may not be immediately for the sanghas convenience/ availability (hence the issue of long periods of time a Bhikkhu can wait in the west you mention).
They can not sleep under the same roof which is similare to the novice, but do still have the duties they preform usually (if i remember) although have to confess the offence every day for the period to all Bhikkhus present. the Bhikkhus need to be available for this although they do not need to find the Bhikkhu undergoing the "penance".
this period can be likened to harsh love, it is bringing them back into the fold, yet, holding them to account in a supportive way.

I have thought of a possibly better explanation of the groups. the first four (of the seven) are akin to the first five lay precepts, gross obvious and nasty; and the remaining are akin to the remaining three of the eight precepts, subtle, possibly unnoticeable faults.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: How are the different levels of vinaya offences handled?

Postby Sylvester » Mon Dec 03, 2012 4:11 am

James the Giant wrote:Would you happen to know what the penance is for a Sanghadisesa? I seem to remember something about reducing a bhikkhu back to novice level, under dependence again... or something like that.



Hi

Might you have been thinking the siksadattaka process of rehabilitating a parajika offender? Addressed here previously -

viewtopic.php?f=30&t=11195&start=20#p169751
viewtopic.php?f=30&t=7080#p113222

Might have been an innovation in the other Vinayas, judging from the reactionary tone hinted in the Pali Vinaya.
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