Two things needed to be diligent.

Update: 09/09/2021
 

Two things needed to be diligent.

 

“There are two things needed to be diligent. What are they? Firstly, the laymen are diligent in offering food, seat tools, and medicines. Secondly, the monks who leave their family or live without their family are diligent in order to give up the pañca-skandha. Dear monks, the two things above are so difficult to do. In the two things above, the more important thing is to be diligent with the hope to give up the pañca-skandha. Therefore, you should practice like this: “I will be diligent to give up the pañca-skandha ”. Thus, you should practice”.

 (Extracted from Angutara Nikaya, chapter 2, Punishment session). 

Word meaning:

1.    Diligent: hard – working, trying to practice the good Dharma, and giving up the bad Dharma.

2.    The pañca-skandha: pi. rūpa: the corporeal group, pi. vedanā: the feeling group, pi. saññā: the perception group, pi. saṅkhāra: the mental formation group, pi. viññāṇa: the consciousness group. Giving up the pañca-skandha means that the practitioner consciously knows that this appearance is not his, this appearance is not his soul. And it is similar to the four other groups.

According to the sutra above, Buddha taught that there are two things which are hard to do. For the layman, being diligent is so hard. For the monk, being diligent to meditate and stop egoism is so hard to do. We all have already watched Journey to the Indian-journey film in which we can see that the master of Tang dynasty and his disciples had to overcome so many struggles to receive the True scriptures. Similarly, to reach enlightenment, the Buddhism practitioners have to be diligent and to overcome struggles in many lives.

In the two things above, the more important thing is to be diligent and to give up the pañca-skandha . Being diligent to offer can result in good deeds, but no matter how many good deeds you have, it is limited.  However, to be diligent to give up the five aggregates is an unmeasurable good deed which helps the practitioner to Nirvana.

 

Lá Xanh

Translated into English by Nguyen Hoang Thoai

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