Order of Precedence

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Post Reply
cookiemonster
Posts: 190
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:42 am

Order of Precedence

Post by cookiemonster » Mon Aug 13, 2018 4:58 pm

In the Maha-parinibbana sutta ( https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... html#chap6 ), the Lord stated:

"And, Ananda, whereas now the bhikkhus address one another as 'friend,' let it not be so when I am gone. The senior bhikkhus, Ananda, may address the junior ones by their name, their family name, or as 'friend'; but the junior bhikkhus should address the senior ones as 'venerable sir' or 'your reverence.'"

What is a "senior" and a "junior" bhikkhu? Is it determined by the length of time one is ordained (as I have heard)?

If so, does a newer monk who has attained a high attainment (e.g. he is already an anagami or arahant) still address an older monk as "venerable sir" or "reverence" if the older monk has not attained something comparable?

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4220
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Rubber Forest, Phrao, Chiangmai

Re: Order of Precedence

Post by Dhammanando » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:25 pm

cookiemonster wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 4:58 pm
What is a "senior" and a "junior" bhikkhu? Is it determined by the length of time one is ordained (as I have heard)?

If so, does a newer monk who has attained a high attainment (e.g. he is already an anagami or arahant) still address an older monk as "venerable sir" or "reverence" if the older monk has not attained something comparable?
Yes and yes.

cookiemonster
Posts: 190
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:42 am

Re: Order of Precedence

Post by cookiemonster » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:58 pm

Thank you. :anjali:

User avatar
Volovsky
Posts: 204
Joined: Sat Jul 28, 2018 9:32 am

Re: Order of Precedence

Post by Volovsky » Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:14 am

My impression is that hardly any bhkikkhu nowadays follows the Buddha's prescription addressing a junior as avuso. Is it so? Any reasons for that? Did anyone tried to introduce this address?

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4220
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Ban Sri Pradu Rubber Forest, Phrao, Chiangmai

Re: Order of Precedence

Post by Dhammanando » Wed Aug 15, 2018 4:11 am

Volovsky wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:14 am
My impression is that hardly any bhkikkhu nowadays follows the Buddha's prescription addressing a junior as avuso. Is it so?
Yes. The common practice nowadays is to address one's juniors by their name, which the Parinibbānasutta also permits.
Volovsky wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:14 am
Any reasons for that? Did anyone tried to introduce this address?
I've no idea what caused the use of āvuso to decline (assuming it was ever a common practice, for which there seems to be no evidence one way or the other). I do know of a few monks who've taken to using the address in their online interactions, but I'm not one of them. It seems to me that the practice has fallen into such desuetude that resorting to it now would be as ceremonious and affected as trying to revive an archaism like "sirrah".

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: retrofuturist and 83 guests