Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

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Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby Gena1480 » Sun Sep 11, 2011 4:47 am

Hello i remember reading
somewhere that lay Ararant
dies if he doesn't join the Sangha
is this true?
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby cooran » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:32 am

Hello Gena1480, all,

This extract from a paper by Piya Tan may be helpful:

Chapter 19 Destiny of the lay arhat
In the Tevijja Vaccha,gotta Sutta (M 71), when Vacchagotta asks, “Master Gotama, is there any
householder who, without abandoning the householder’s fetters,111 when the body has broken up, makes
an end of suffering?” the Buddha answers that there is none (M 71.11/1:483). Here, “householder’s
fetters” (gihi,sayojana) refers to attachment to the requisites of a householder (such as land, ornaments,
wealth, grain, etc, says the Mah k).

The Majjhima Commentary says that even laymen, on becoming arhats, have destroyed all attachment
to worldly things and thus either went forth as monks or passed away immediately after their attainment
and also mentions Santati the privy councillor, Uggasena the treasurer’s son, and the boy Vta,soka
as examples of layman arhats (MA 3:196).

This point about the lay arhat’s destiny is discussed in the Milinda,paha:
There are two destinies for a householder who has attained arhathood: either, that very day, he
goes forth or he attains final nirvana. (Miln 264; cf 164)

This well known statement is only found in the Commentaries (eg MA 3:196) but is untraced in the
Canon.

The Milinda,paha explains that the lay disciple, upon attaining to arhathood, either ordains that very
day or will enter final nirvana. This, Nagasena argues, is not the defect of arhathood but the defect of
being a layperson, just as in the case of someone who has a stomach disorder, “it is not the defect in the
food, but the defect of the stomach” (Miln 265). Two famous canonical examples of lay arhats are Yasa
and Bahiya Drucriya. Yasa joined the Order (V 1:17) but Bahiya died shortly.112
[..............................]

My own understanding of this interesting situation—that layman arhats must join the order or die
within a day—is a dramatic way of saying that on ordaining, they are bound by the Vinaya, so that they
have to go on almsround, keep healthy, teach the others and be an example to them.

In other words, one of the purposes of the Vinaya is that the monastics live on for the sake on the teaching.
http://dharmafarer.org/wordpress/wp-con ... s-piya.pdf

with metta
Chris
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby Aloka » Sun Sep 11, 2011 8:13 am

How would this affect a lay Dhamma teacher who was an arahant - but didn't feel it necessary to ordain ?
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby Gena1480 » Sun Sep 11, 2011 1:14 pm

thank you very much
looks like there can't be lay Arahant teachers
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Sep 11, 2011 11:21 pm

Greetings Gena,

To establish that perception may well have been the intention... I mean, who would want to acknowledge the presence of enlightened ones outside of the Sangha? That would be a recipe for unnecessary schism, dissent and sectarianism.

What is interesting though is that there's no mention of paccekabuddhas (silent Buddhas) dying in such a way...

Paccekabuddha (Pāli), literally "a lone buddha" , "a buddha on their own" or "a private buddha", is one of three types of enlightened beings according to some schools of Buddhism. The other two types are the Samma-sam-buddha and Arahant. They are said to achieve enlightenment on their own, without the use of teachers or guides, according to some traditions by contemplating the principle of dependent arising. They are said to arise only in ages where there is no Buddha and the Buddhist teachings, the Dhamma are lost. Many may arise at a single time. Unlike Supreme Buddhas, their enlightenment is not foretold.

Some schools assert that pratyekabuddhas are not omniscient, while others say that they are the same (in realisation) as Bodhisattva Buddhas, but do not have the will to teach the entire Dharma. They do give moral teachings, but do not bring others to enlightenement. A pratyekabuddha leaves no saṅgha as a legacy to carry on the Dhamma.

Pratyekabuddhas (e.g. Darīmukha J.378, Sonaka J.529,) appear as teachers of Buddhist doctrine in pre-Buddhist times in several of the Jātakas. The experiences and enlightenment-verses uttered by Pratyekabuddhas are narrated in the Khaggavisāna-sutta of the Sutta Nipāta.

The yāna or vehicle by which pratyekabuddhas achieve enlightenment is called the pratyekayāna, the "on-one's-own vehicle", in Mahayana tradition.

In the Majjhima Nikāya of the Pāli Canon it says that offerings to Pratyekabuddhas are superior to offerings to Arhants and also that offerings to Tathāgatas are superior to offerings to Pratyekabuddhas. This may imply that Pratyekabuddhas are superior to arhants but inferior to Tathāgatas in realization.

Source: http://dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=Paccekabuddha

Metta,
Retro. :)
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Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby Nicro » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:00 am

Retro,

But don't Paccekabuddhas already live the homeless life? And being that they found the Dhamma by themselves wouldn't they basically constitute a one man Sangha?
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:06 am

Greetings Nicro,

Community of one seems a bit of a stretch of the meaning of Sangha.

:tongue:

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby Nicro » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:13 am

:jumping:

Yes, I'm not denying that. But, just as one takes refuge in the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha, a Buddha whether Paccekabuddha or Sammasambuddha only has the Dhamma.

So they would take there refuge in the Dhamma, with full confidence in themselves as knowers of the Dhamma. So Sangha is unneeded.

It is interesting why an Arahant has to ordain. Why couldn't they simply leave home? After all, Sammasambuddhas and Paccekabuddhas just lived a homeless life with or without a Sangha.
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby morning mist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:33 am

The text didn't mention that a Samma Sambuddha would die if he doesn't establish a sangha and teach, same goes with a Paccekabuddha. It just says Arahant. I wouldn't assume that an Arahant is a Paccekabuddha .
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:38 am

Greetings Morningmist,

Paccekabuddhas and Sammasambuddhas are both Arahants too.

The Buddha himself was often regarded as "the Arahant".

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby morning mist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:41 am

Hi Retro,

Indeed I have seen Buddhas being regarded as Arahants , but I have never seen Arahants disciples being regarded as Samma Sambuddhas or Paccekabuddhas anywhere.
with metta,
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Sep 12, 2011 2:13 am

morning mist wrote:Hi Retro,

Indeed I have seen Buddhas being regarded as Arahants , but I have never seen Arahants disciples being regarded as Samma Sambuddhas or Paccekabuddhas anywhere.
While an arahant is not a samasambuddha, the arahant is buddha whose bodhi is not different from that of the Buddha.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby morning mist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 2:48 am

No matter how similar Arahants are not considered Buddha or Silent Buddha. The Buddha mentioned that there will be Arahants after he entered Parinibbana , but he didn't say that there will be many Buddhas imnediately after he entered Parinibbana . Only after the dhamma disappear will there be another Buddha. The following Buddhas will appear likewise. I wouldn't assume all his Arahants disciples living right now to be Buddhas or Silent Buddhas. In that case then we have many Buddhas at the same time at the moment.
with metta,
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby tiltbillings » Mon Sep 12, 2011 4:02 am

morning mist wrote:No matter how similar Arahants are not considered Buddha or Silent Buddha. The Buddha mentioned that there will be Arahants after he entered Parinibbana , but he didn't say that there will be many Buddhas imnediately after he entered Parinibbana . Only after the dhamma disappear will there be another Buddha. The following Buddhas will appear likewise. I wouldn't assume all his Arahants disciples living right now to be Buddhas or Silent Buddhas. In that case then we have many Buddhas at the same time at the moment.
The arahants' bodhi is no different from that of the Buddha:

At Saavatthi. "Bhikkhus, the Tathagata, the Arahant, the Perfectly Enlightened One, liberated by nonclinging through revulsion towards form (feeling, perception, volitional formations, and consciousness), through its fading away and cessation is called a perfectly Enlightened One. A bhikkhu liberated by wisdom, liberated by nonclinging through revulsion towards form (feeling, perception, volitional formations, and consciousness), through its fading away and cessation is called one liberated by wisdom.[/b]

[Here we have an equivalency between the Buddha and the arahants in terms of attainment, and acknowledging this equivalency, the Buddha then asks:]

Therein, bhikkhus, what is the distinction, what is the disparity, what is the difference between the Tathaagata, the Arahant, the Perfectly Enlightened One and a bhikkhu liberated by wisdom? ...

The Tathagata, monks, who, being Arahant, is fully awakened, it is he who causes a way to arise which has not arisen before; who proclaims a way not proclaimed before; who is a knower of a way, who understands a way, who is skilled in a way. And now, monks, his disciples are wayfarers who follow after him. That, monks, is the distinction, the specific feature which distinguished the Tathagata who, being arahant, is fully awakened, from the monk who is freed by insight.
SN III 66.
Now, the distinction is made clearly here, but so is the equivalence. If you wish to look at this issue in more detail, we certainly can do that in in new thread.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby morning mist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 4:26 am

Their enlightenment are similar, but still they are not considered Buddhas or Silent Buddhas. Otherwise we can say that there are many Buddhas and Silent Buddhas right after the Buddha's parinibbana and even some right now. But did the text say that it is possible to have more than one Buddhas or many Buddhas at once ? Surely , Arahant disciples are not considered Buddhas or Silent Buddhas.
with metta,
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Re: Does a lay Arahant die if he doesn't join the Sangha?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Sep 12, 2011 4:30 am

Greetings Morning Mist,

That is now irrelevant in the context of this topic.

If you wish to discuss it further, please create a separate topic in line with Tiltbilling's guidance.

Thank you.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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