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Questions tagged [sutras]

A type of literary composition in of varying length. In Buddhism this mostly refers to canonical texts. Sutras is a Sanskrit term however the Pali term sutta is often used by certain traditions. The two terms are equivalent.

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663 views

Why do beings, even in lower/hell realms, like their lives?

As to Lord Buddha beings suffer because they were born: Jaathi pachchaya jara marana soka paridewa dukka domanassa upayasa sambhawanthi From birth as a requisite condition, then aging & ...
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Has lord Buddha ever told something like this?

Once lord Buddha pointed at a glistening star and asked a monk, "Do you believe that star still exists where we can see it?" The monk answered yes. Then lord Buddha said, "You are wrong. ...
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Can anyone identify which suttas these quotes (having to do with the sense of self) come from?

This document contains instructions for ridding the sense of a personal self. I was wondering which suttas (or other texts) the quotes at the end come from: “By rightly understanding ‘I am,’ one ...
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Question on a Mahayana Sutra (Three Svabhavas)

First time trying this. Much Metta to all beings here. I've been studying and meditating on a Mahayana based sutra for months, which is quite detailed in philosophy. I don't seem to understand the ...
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Sūkarakhata sutta and the “arahants seeking benefits they already have”

I stumbled across this sutta yesterday (SN 48.58) with a dialogue between the Buddha and Sariputta, which has the following passage: Considering what benefit, Sariputta, does a bhikkhu whose taints ...
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What does the phrase “to armor oneself with vows” mean?

This seems to be a common trope-- samnaha. I honestly have no idea what they mean, it strikes me as a "it's raining cats and dogs" sort of idiom. Is there an explanation for what it means? Examples: ...
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All kammas have to be experienced or not?

It's said that some kammas are not to be experienced, some kammas have to be experienced. Not all kammas have to be experienced. For example Angulimala story, the bad vipaka of killing many people ...
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164 views

Do we need to believe in Buddhist stories to be a real Buddhist?

Some suttas and the dhammapada contain stories with things not very easy to verify, such as people flying, living 8.000 years, teletransportation, etc. Some of those are related to the psychic ...
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Ways of Controlling Anger

What are some techniques that the Lord Buddha have stated to control anger? I can recall a few (listed below) but I not really sure if they are exactly correct. changing the object of your attention ...
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174 views

What is the meaning of “gross or subtle” physical food as nutriments?

In the Sammaditthi Sutta it describes the 4 nutriments, and the first one - physical food as nutriment - is said to be "gross or subtle". What is the meaning of these terms? I read that the term for ...
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641 views

Desire without attachment

The MahaNidana Sutta says “Ānanda, if one is asked: ‘Is clinging due to a specific condition?’ one should say: ‘It is.’ If one is asked: ‘Through what condition is there clinging?’ one should say: ...
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Which sutta is it in which Sariputta asks his disciples .. friend if someone asks, is the world eternal

I remember reading once, disciples of Sariputta were going out into the world and he ask them the question: "Friend what if someone ask you is the world eternal or is not eternal". Then his passed his ...
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How does one become a “Māra”?

I am not asking for an explanation on the whole "What is a Mara?" question. What i'm asking about is the being mentioned in Buddhism who has the command over all normal beings, the one who came ...
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Role of the Buddhist in preserving the original teachings

This is a very common dilemma. If you go look for some Buddhist books here in the west (I guess the same thing happens in the east) you will easily find books written by monks and general authors, it ...
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551 views

What is the sutra where the Buddha emits fire and water from his body?

I've seen pictures that depict the Buddha floating in the air and emitting fire from this torso and water from his legs. The fire and the water might be the other way around. I think the picture ...
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A concentrated monk discerns things as they actually are?

Samadhi Sutta (Concentration) [Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.] “Develop concentration, monks. A concentrated monk discerns things as they actually are present... Is this an accurate ...
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How did Buddha Explain the Creation Of the World?

I have heard that Buddha explained how the world is recreated after a destruction, in Aggan̄n̄a Sutta. One tale told by the Buddha in the Aggan̄n̄a Sutta describes the process of recreation on this ...
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Sutta/Sutra guideline for choosing actions in ethical dilemmas

I am searching for a sutta which gives a general guideline which helps in making ethical decisions. There are many suttas which give a skillful action for a specific scenario but I am looking for a ...
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Death vs Birth - Birth & Death of what?

Death - What dies with death? Birth - What is born with birth? Can you provide any Sutta / Sutra references.
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Is there any authenticity to the book 'The Deathbed Sutra of the Buddha: Or Siddhartha's Regrets'?

I found this book in a local bookstore and went online to research it. I could not find much reference to it. The author, George C. Adams Jr., purports to have been given a lost sutra of the Buddha, ...
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Is it ok for lay meditators to have counsellors/therapists/psychologists

It's pretty evident that meditation itself helps you deal with your problems and inner issues, but is it okay for a lay meditator to pay a psychologist/therapist to talk about his or her feelings. ...
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What is the Avatamsaka Sutra about?

I'm not really expecting a short summary, but I'd be happy to get one. This is a 1600 page sutra in English (and cost over $100 on Amazon). It gets reference a lot in the Brahma Net Sutra and Huayan ...
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Meditation technique to reduce/control pain/sorrow/loss

So I have been doing different meditation techniques to control/reduce different poisons(Klesha) of mind. Such as I do Asuaba(Perception of Unattractiveness) for Lust Perception of Loving Kindness (...
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Monks who are not worthy and worthy

I have seen certain suttas where the Buddha explains about the qualities of monks who are and who are not worthy of gifts, salutation and etc. Where can I find the Suttas? References are appreciated.
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Is there a real difference between “not-self” and “no self”, and if so, which one is correct?

Just in case someone is interested, this is a question based on this thread, but it's not necessary to read such discussion to understand and answer this question. I'd like to know about the ...
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What is the phantom in the conclusion of the Diamond Sutra?

This is the version I am referring to: Thus shall ye think of this fleeting world: A star at dawn, a bubble in a stream; A flash of lightning in a summer cloud; A flickering lamp, a phantom, ...
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Earliest usage of “rope or snake” allegory in Buddhist literature?

The allegory of a rope being mistaken for a snake to explain subtle metaphysical points is widespread in Buddhist literature. In particular, Je Tsongkhapa uses this allegory many times in his works to ...
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How do you understand Ananda Sutta?

How do you understand the Ananda Sutta? How do you place it in relation to the Atman or Anatta (An-atman) doctrine? SN 44.10 Then the wanderer Vacchagotta went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, ...
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Three types of characteristics to achieve a goal

I have heard in a lot of sermons about how an individual achieve a goal. Even Buddha had the same type of characteristics. As far as I know they are Determination Consistency Desire to see and end of ...
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What advice did the Buddha give to corrupt officials?

I'm wondering if there were any such occasions, and what suttas/sutras this is recorded in. Also if the Buddha gave advice to otherwise evil people besides Angulimala or Devadatta, or possible ...
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Is Mara a real being or something internal, produced by our own minds?

I have heard both interpretations, for me it would make more sense to be something from the mind as there is no creator God or its opposite in Buddhism, the image of a "temptator creature" like Satan ...
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How do the stages of insight before stream entry relate to the suttas

Are the stages of knowledge before stream entry mentioned in the suttas? How does this correlate with the Visuddhimagga? E.g. sabba-kaya-patisamvedi (in some interpretations) may directly relate to ...
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In which suttas does The Buddha cover annihilationism (ucchedavāda)?

Given what I assume was the predominant view of the time, I would not be surprised if there are many Suttas that deal explicitly with resurrection (as opposed to rebirth which seems to be a more ...
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Sallatha Sutta and modern psychology

The Sallatha Sutta, famous for the idea of two arrows, has the following passages that are less often discussed. I am particularly interested in interpretations of the highlighted words and how they ...
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Where can I find an English translation of the Buddhavatamasaka Sutra?

I just finished re-watching this lecture by Jan Nattier, an academic expert in Mahayhana Buddhism. She mentioned that the 10 Bhumis in the 26th chapter of the Avatamsaka had a predecessor called the ...
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What is/was the role of agamas in Chinese and Japanese history?

Recently I read/heard someone saying that the agamas are/were dismissed and downplayed in Chinese and Japanese Buddhism throughout history. I understand that Mahayana texts received much attention in ...
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MN26: “not even has Alaro Kalamo…” or “not only Alaro Kalamo has …” or “Alaro Kalamo has not only…”?

I have a problem with that -in my feeling- contradictory translations of a remark in MN26. While K.E.Neumann uses an expression like "(...) not even Alaro Kalamo has (...), but I have (...) " Kay ...
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Why is the Heart Sutra so important in Mahayana Buddhism?

So the Heart Sutra is one of the most popular sutra in Mahayana Buddhism, said to be the summary and heart of the Prajna Paramita Sutra. It was popularized by the famous monk Xuanzang. It was said ...
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What is Buddhism “for” (in favor of)?

Aside from ending suffering, encouraging compassionate action and leading one to nirvanna, is there anything that Buddhism promotes, or says is good? The reason that I ask is because in another ...
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Did the Buddha ever refute the view of “extreme metaphysical nihilism” e.g. a view that “nothing is real”?

Important note: I am only using the word "real" only in the sense of meaning "exists and is not an illusion". I am defining "extreme metaphysical nihilism" as the belief that "nothing is real". I ...
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Did the Buddha according to the suttas mean anything else by the word “self” beyond simply the aspect of control/power?

It looks like according to [the Anatta-lakkhana Sutta][1] one aspect that is considered "self" by the Buddha is power or control. Why did he use the word "self" instead of just "complete control/power"...
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How should one be mindful of death?

Namo Budhaya. In the Mindfulness of Death sutta Buddha says the following: When this was said, the Buddha said to those mendicants: “The mendicants who develop mindfulness of death by wishing to ...
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Detachment : What are we really parting from?

I was thinking about detachment today and this thought occurred in my mind... We like what we see,hear,touch,smell,taste & think. This liking turns into attachment over time and this is the ...
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Why did Buddha choose sacred fig for meditating and austerity?

Is there any reason or any sutta tells why Buddha choose sacred fig for meditation and austerity?
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Majjhima Nikaya 152 Indriyabhāvana Sutta

In this sutta, the Buddha teaches how different people should approach sense-restraint. Here, the enlightened ones can perceive objects in a different light (positively, negatively or dwelling in ...
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Different Reasons of Dhamma's Decline

In many suttas the Buddha stated different reasons for the decline of the Dhamma. Why and how it happens. The different causes. Can I have the references of those suttas? -Metta
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Comparing Chinese Agama the ? Bundles of Reeds Simile with Pali Nalakalapiyo Sutta

In commenting a post, I have just been introduced to the "two bundles of reeds leaning up against each other" Sutta. The comments have just been moved to chat and I hope it would be kept for awhile ...
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Suttas on the 5 Precepts

I am looking for the suttas where the Buddha has preached about the 5 precepts. Also how it can lead you to Samadhi, Niravana and etc. -Metta
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Quicksands Simile?

I am looking for that very specific sutta in the Pâli Canons wherein it is made plain that such a one not having himself attained to liberation, is not qualified to liberate other. The simile, I think,...
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In which Sutta, Buddha wore cloth of dead body?

It is difficult for me to find the reference about Gautama Buddha wore robe made from cloth which was wrapped to a death body. Which part of Sutta do I have to reference? Can we calculate how long ...