Rishi, and those interested
- Namo tassa bhagavato arahato sammā-sambuddhassa -
Family responsibility is a very high one, a "duty" and in fullfilling it, Buddha had point such deeds having done as one of the highest protection, highest blessings:
Support for one's parents,
assistance to one's wife and children,
consistency in one's work:
This is the highest protection.
Giving, living in rectitude,
assistance to one's relatives,
deeds that are blameless:
This is the highest protection.
Maha-mangala Sutta: Protection
Family, aside of blood relation, should be seen as the group of supporters, those one is in certain ways bound for ones benefit and voluntary life-support. Of with one, importand to know, should one not be stingy in share access for others to certain benefits. Otherwise one is incapable to reach highee stages of existances, at the same time, ingratitude is causes the same obstacle.
"Without abandoning these five qualities, one is incapable of entering & remaining in the second jhana... the third jhana... the fourth jhana; incapable of realizing the fruit of stream-entry... the fruit of once-returning... the fruit of non-returning... arahantship. Which five? Stinginess as to one's monastery [lodgings], stinginess as to one's family [of supporters], stinginess as to one's gains, stinginess as to one's status, and ingratitude. Without abandoning these five qualities, one is incapable of entering & remaining in the second jhana... the third jhana... the fourth jhana; one is incapable realizing the fruit of stream-entry... the fruit of once-returning... the fruit of non-returning... arahantship.
"With the abandoning of these five qualities, one is capable of entering & remaining in the second jhana... the third jhana... the fourth jhana; capable of realizing the fruit of stream-entry... the fruit of once-returning... the fruit of non-returning... arahantship..."
MACCHARIYA SUTTA — STINGINESS (6)
So there semms to be a conflict also in the Buddhas teaching on this matter. "Pay debt, in ways of grateful acts and at the same time, share and let go of the 'family'?" But actually it isn't, if looking on it deeper.
So leaving the blood related family a little in regard, the family meant on primarly level, one migh see that friends, collegs groups of people around ones "livestyle", be it a good, or a bad, are often, from a personal view, in dependency what one individuall sees a benefical and joy-supporting, higher regarded as blood-family.
If such a non-blood-related family, father, mother... supports in just ways of sensual pleasures, such higher regard is wrong. The lowest and higherst kind of support can be seen as in:
(1) harmful (for one self and other) ways of providing enjoyment in sensuallity and the four prerequisites: regarding fools as relatives and family, people providing each other with drugs, poisions, using means like lying, taking what is not given, as means to come to the desired objects of enjoyment. A wandering on in the realms of animals, hungry ghosts and hell, with short visits in good realms.(This group, is by most being regarded as the most benefical, and therefore most binding)
(2) harmless ways of providing enjoyment in sensuality and the four prerequisites: this is the good family in the world, with it common lose and gain, wandering on inpleasant ways, for life like humans and devas. Providing by means of harmlessness and rightous gains by proper sacrifies.
(3) providing enjoyment without much special enjoyment but the four requisites (food, cloth, shelter, medicine): by proper, harmless and sacrify of own. This is where all beings parents always fall under. Short, long... starting by being received and provided in a womb. A/the family that leaves open all ways, does not bind in certain direction of ones own tendency and intent. Including also support in regard a basic skills and knowledge in the world. This family is regarded as gods.
(4) heavenly relation, providing with livelihood beyond material food and needs by harmless means. The relation with teacher, Devas and gods, exchanging and sharing virtues above ordinary realms. This is the highest family-relation within the world. So also the duty or responsibility level.
(5) relation with the Noble One, providing in the most respons-able way torward the whole family of wordily beings, with the needs of path and the aim of beyond being anyhow related any more: unbond***: This is the direct relation with the Buddhas, the Dhamma and the bondless community of Nobel Ones, Sangha. The highest responsibility, and duty one can fullfil, become part with the aim: "The task is done. The holly live fullfilled. No more further (duties, responsibilities) for the world (and its beings). Free of debt."
So when one considers this levels of families, their positions in regard in responsibility, one, for oneself more or less still to much bound in lower relations, might nevertheless see that taking on higher regard of relations and responsibilities has to be rightous also regarded as such, and will be, of people who are not totally blind. Yet one him/herself might be not able (better willing to go forward) to leave certain levels and step higher in regard. Nevertheless, higher relations, higher taking on of responsibility, will e regarded as praiseworthy, heros of people with basic right view, not to speak of people of integrity: "going forth/forward, is always praised by the wise!"
(Mv.I.7.12) The money-lender saw Yasa sitting there and on seeing him said to him, “Yasa, my son, your mother is lamenting and full of grief. Give your mother her life (back?)!”
...(Mv.I.7.13) Then Yasa looked up at the the Blessed One. Then the Blessed One said to the money-lender, “What do you think, householder: For Yasa, who has seen and known the Dhamma with the knowledge and vision of one in training—just as you have—whose mind, as he reflected on the level (of mind) as he had seen and known it, was through lack of clinging/sustenance released from effluents: Would it be possible for him to revert to the lower life and indulge in sensuality as he did before as a householder?”
“Householder, Yasa has seen and known the Dhamma with the knowledge and vision of one in training, just as you have.
“Reflecting on the level (of mind) as he had seen and known it, his mind was, through lack of clinging/sustenance, released from effluents.
“It would be impossible for Yasa to revert to the lower life and indulge in sensuality as he did before as a householder.”
(Mv.I.7.14) [The money-lender:] “Lord, it’s a gain for Yasa, a great gain for Yasa, that his mind is, through lack of clinging/sustenance, released from effluents!
“May the Blessed One acquiesce to my meal tomorrow, with Yasa as your attendant monk.”
The Blessed One acquiesced with silence.
Then the money-lender, understanding the Blessed One’s acquiescence, got up from his seat, bowed down to him, circumambulated him, keeping him to his right, and left.
(Mv.I.7.15) Then Yasa, not long after the money-lender had left, said to the Blessed One,
“May I receive the Going-forth in the Blessed One’s presence? May I receive the Acceptance?”
“Come, monk.” Said the Blessed One. “The Dhamma is well-taught. Live the holy life.”
Such was the venerable one’s Acceptance. At that time there were seven arahants in the world.
The Discussion of Going-forth
[My person shell stop here, to visit certain past relatives here for/to give alms, so that they might develope possible, increase, relations of higher kinds, for now, as well: continuing is not sure and not really obligated. Let's see.]
Secular "Buddhist" do not regard relations (upanissaya) and mostly also not the three things wise praisesn "Generosity (dāna), assistance for father and mother (eg. relativesb sīla), going forth (*bhāvana), even using the labels for outsider (people who have no relation with the Noble ones, even by outwardly fullfilling of duties to them: tending and possible even already outcasts based on their elements of views).
(Kind of) Persons (whom one tends to, personality), dwelling (country, places), weather (clima), food (that is clinged on, prefered), among with other Dhammas, are matters of upanissayapaccayena, strong relation cause. As the Buddha pointed out is that realatives in tendency common meet each other again and again, gather together, and it is seldom that beings strive for higher relationship, giving nurishment and food, paccaya (strong causes) for such, by promted deeds (merely deliberated; not just unpromted, merely accidentally).
If one is blessed - see the lower highest blessings in regard of condition/relation in the Mangala Sutta "living among upright people/rigthous countries", one will propable learn outwardly proper regards of what is worthy to nurish by giving respect (again: generosity, fullfilling duties of releations and going forth). If born amoung "Brahmas" or people without relation to good relations, living in a strong devotion to unrightous individual lack of relation, in a lost generation, it's very, very seldom to come or to even meet consciously higher relations and requires strong effort to possible do not lose last upanissaya with people of integrity: finding at least strong relation with the lowest family (see above (1)).
So every contact with good families, even noble, is very auspicious. Like meeting the heavenly messangers is seldom (bodywitnessing on the level of mind: oldage, sickness, death, Samana/recluse) and with it the truth of relations getting disenchantment to wordily ones (1-4) and seeing that all other relatives live on the pain of their or other relatives. Mother killing previous mother for here child, cild kills previous child for fullfilling wordily duties to its mother...
Let my person provide here a personal story of meeting once again heaveny messangers in this existence:
By Devas guided and protected, my person once left the palace another time. While sitting on the bank of the Mekong in as so called very poor but actually most rich country, Kampochea (Abundance by own work - or non by lack of it), especially in regard of the seven real treasures, and reflecting a blessed life and it's inconstancy, kamboja (kamma paccaya), having seen the relation of masters and slaves already.
Then a beggar child, about 4 years, took on the generouse abounded recycling cans and bottles by the hotel owner. No long after that a begging woman, with a baby beated off the beggar child to get the "treasures". At this moment it was clear to me, either if subtile or platant, beings of wordily relations kill each other for the sake of being related and so directly knowing that the strive for relation or responsibility is higher then any other reletion since it does not take side in a battle and benefits then all of the past relatives, all being, whether regarded as own or not own. This was when my person got reminded by meeting the heavingly messangers another time in this existence.
When one has a relation, one has a contract, spoken or unspoken. One holds a promis when holding a relation. Breaking a promise, a contract, is generally breaking precepts, good conduct. But in cases where one ends a contract, a relation, even with disagreement or the contract partner, for the sake of leaving a lower relation to a higher, it might sake the world caused by breaking out of Samsara.
In short: So if one breaks up a relation for other kinds of wordily relations, does not "care" of responsibility, still nurishing on it, is of cause wrong. Not to speak from breaking up responsibility and relation when going into lower life, relations, for its sake.
But if one "leaves« and abounds responsibility, outwardly and inwardly, on wordly levels, in that way showing responsibility an compassion for the sake of all beings, such is more than praise worthy. Now of course not easy to see, to be used to, not to speak of done. A person having even entered the stream, has actually left the direct relation to the family of the Noble One and also the strive after it is a righteous reason to give up certain from other demanted duties, for the sake of higher benefit even for them.
That is especially not easy if near blood relatives are actually relatives of the Devas, when one is related, used to dwell with wives, children, friends of the family of Devas, to leave even parents, wives and chikds, friends, co-worker, assistants and slaves... and it's not so that all Devas, this days, understand.
Under all breaking up of responsibilities of wordily realation, only in regard of the parents, the Buddha gave after request (by Ven. Ananda) to obligation to ask for leave, since a leave of high responsibility might give problems for the estimate of the conventional Sangha.
Monks, especially in regard of possession of the Sangha, are even restricted to show responsibility of wordily value, so to support laypeople, those not after the holly life, on a ideal level, wordilings with material support. Accept to those after the holy life, with tendency to higher conduct and mother and father, a Bhikkhu is not given to share usuall support. A topic that is actually broad and deep connected with corrution in maintaining wordily relations, a serious fault (Sg.13)
In regard of Sangha-property, the convential family of monks has (had) only with two fellow, related religions (bonds, famalies) certain possibilities and duties to take on responsibility: that is the Bhikkhuni-community and their Samaneras, see also duties of teacher and disciples: Vatta Khandhaka: Collection of Duties.
The overview of duties of those having gone forth are topics of:
- Incoming Bhikkhus' Duties
- Resident Bhikkhus' Duties
- Departing Bhikkhus' Duties
- The Duties in Giving "approve" (of good deeds: Anumodana)
- Refectory Duties
- The Duties for Bhikkhus Going for Alms
- The Duties of Bhikkhus Living in the Wilderness
- Lodging Duties
- Toilet Duties
- Pupils' Duties
- Mentors' Duties
All of course "dutiesk in reagard of the Holly Life and for Nibbanas sake, the strive for it as highest underlying responsibility.
There is no responsibility in regard of lay people, aside of certain conducts of "foreign - policy" for the sake of estimation of the Sangha at large, by Bhikkhus.
The gift of teaching the Dhamma is a individual total voluntary act of goodness (if not made out of corruption and the sake of livelihood and requisits: such is not allowed).
these three persons are evident in the world. What three? Bhikkhus, there is a person that should not be associated, there is one that should be associated and there is another that should be honoured and revered and associated.
"Who is the person that should not be associated? Bhikkhus, a certain person is below par in virtues, concentration and wisdom. Such should not be associated unless out of sympathy and compassion.
Not consorting with fools,
consorting with the wise,
paying homage to those worthy of homage:
This is the highest protection.
Living in a civilized land,
having made merit in the past,
directing oneself rightly:
This is the highest protection.
Useful synonymous of realation/-ship/family: ñāta, kāya, saṅghaṃ, upanissāya, guṇā, nissāya, supporters, benefactors, ...
Anumodana/dedication of the merits (a usual dedication when having made a gift.)
ឥទំ វោ ទានំ ញាតីនំ ហោតុ សុខិតា ហោន្តុ ញាតយោ
Īdaṃ vo dānaṃ ñātīnaṃ hotu sukhitā hontu ñātayo!
May this sacrifies be for (my) relatives, may (my) relatives develope happiness with it!
Dedicated and in responsibility for the family of the Noble One and their followers, for the current blood/"own" family, for the family of all beings.
That is the why the Dhamma, and proper responsibility in regard of relation, is pleasant at itjs beginning, in the middle an the end.
It's possible to become a relativ of, a khema, step by step!
[Note: This is a gift of Dhamma, not meant for commercial purpose and other low wordily gains by means of trade and exchange]