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About Sarakāni (1st) —Bhikkhu Sujato

Linked Discourses 55

3. About Sarakāni

24. About Sarakāni (1st)

1.1At Kapilavatthu.

1.2Now at that time Sarakāni the Sakyan had passed away. 1.3The Buddha declared that he was 1.4a stream-enterer, not liable to be reborn in the underworld, bound for awakening.

1.5At that, several Sakyans came together complaining, grumbling, and objecting, 1.6“It’s incredible, it’s amazing! 1.7Who can’t become a stream-enterer these days? 1.8For the Buddha even declared Sarakāni to be a stream-enterer after he passed away. 1.9 1.10 1.11Sarakāni was too weak for the training; he used to drink alcohol.”

2.1Then Mahānāma the Sakyan went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and told him what had happened. The Buddha said: 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 2.10 2.11

3.1“Mahānāma, when a lay follower has for a long time gone for refuge to the Buddha, the teaching, and the Saṅgha, how could they go to the underworld? 3.2And if anyone should rightly be said to 3.3have for a long time gone for refuge to the Buddha, the teaching, and the Saṅgha, it’s Sarakāni the Sakyan. 3.4Sarakāni the Sakyan has for a long time gone for refuge to the Buddha, the teaching, and the Saṅgha. 3.5How could he go to the underworld?

4.1Take a certain person who has experiential confidence in the Buddha … 4.2 4.3the teaching … 4.4the Saṅgha … 4.5They have laughing wisdom and swift wisdom, and are endowed with freedom. 4.6They’ve realized the undefiled freedom of heart and freedom by wisdom in this very life. And they live having realized it with their own insight due to the ending of defilements. 4.7This person is exempt from hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. They’re exempt from places of loss, bad places, the underworld.

5.1Take another person who has experiential confidence in the Buddha … 5.2 5.3the teaching … 5.4the Saṅgha … 5.5They have laughing wisdom and swift wisdom, and are endowed with freedom. 5.6With the ending of the five lower fetters they’re reborn spontaneously. They are extinguished there, and are not liable to return from that world. 5.7This person, too, is exempt from hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. They’re exempt from places of loss, bad places, the underworld.

6.1Take another person who has experiential confidence in the Buddha … 6.2 6.3the teaching … 6.4the Saṅgha … 6.5But they don’t have laughing wisdom or swift wisdom, nor are they endowed with freedom. 6.6With the ending of three fetters, and the weakening of greed, hate, and delusion, they’re a once-returner. They come back to this world once only, then make an end of suffering. 6.7This person, too, is exempt from hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. They’re exempt from places of loss, bad places, the underworld.

7.1Take another person who has experiential confidence in the Buddha … 7.2 7.3the teaching … 7.4the Saṅgha … 7.5But they don’t have laughing wisdom or swift wisdom, nor are they endowed with freedom. 7.6With the ending of three fetters they’re a stream-enterer, not liable to be reborn in the underworld, bound for awakening. 7.7This person, too, is exempt from hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. They’re exempt from places of loss, bad places, the underworld.

8.1Take another person who doesn’t have experiential confidence in the Buddha … 8.2the teaching … 8.3the Saṅgha … 8.4They don’t have laughing wisdom or swift wisdom, nor are they endowed with freedom. 8.5Still, they have these qualities: 8.6the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, immersion, and wisdom. 8.7And they accept the principles proclaimed by the Realized One after considering them with a degree of wisdom. 8.8This person, too, doesn’t go to hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. They don’t go to places of loss, bad places, the underworld.

9.1Take another person who doesn’t have experiential confidence in the Buddha … 9.2the teaching … 9.3the Saṅgha … 9.4They don’t have laughing wisdom or swift wisdom, nor are they endowed with freedom. 9.5Still, they have these qualities: 9.6the faculties of faith, energy, mindfulness, immersion, and wisdom. 9.7And they have a degree of faith and love for the Buddha. 9.8This person, too, doesn’t go to hell, the animal realm, and the ghost realm. They don’t go to places of loss, bad places, the underworld.

9.9If these great sal trees could understand what was well said and poorly said, I’d declare them to be stream-enterers. 9.10Why can’t this apply to Sarakāni? 9.11Mahānāma, Sarakāni the Sakyan undertook the training at the time of his death.”