The chapter on confession (pācittiya)

Monks’ Confession 29: the training rule on what is got prepared

Origin story

First sub-story

At one time the Buddha was staying at Rājagaha in the Bamboo Grove, the squirrel sanctuary. At that time the nun Thullanandā was associating with a family from which she received a regular meal.

On one occasion the head of that family had invited some senior monks. Just then, the nun Thullanandā robed up in the morning, took her bowl and robe, and went to that family. And she asked the head of the family, “Why have you prepared so much food?”

“Because, Venerable, I’ve invited the senior monks.”

“But who are those senior monks?”

“Venerable Sāriputta, Venerable Mahāmoggallāna, Venerable Mahākaccāna, Venerable Mahākoṭṭhika, Venerable Mahākappina, Venerable Mahācunda, Venerable Anuruddha, Venerable Revata, Venerable Upāli, Venerable Ānanda, and Venerable Rāhula.”

“But why do you invite such inferior monks instead of the great ones?”

“Who are these great monks?” “Venerable Devadatta, Venerable Kokālika, Venerable Kaṭamodakatissaka, Venerable Khaṇḍadeviyā-putta, and Venerable Samuddadatta.”

While this conversation was still taking place, the senior monks entered. Thullanandā said, “Is it true that you’ve invited these great monks?”

“Just before you called them inferior monks, and now you call them great monks.” And that lay person threw her out of the house and made an end of her regular meal.

The monks of few desires … grumbled and complained, “How can Devadatta eat almsfood knowing that a nun got it prepared?” … “Is it true, Devadatta, that you did this?”

“It’s true, Master.”

The Buddha rebuked him, “… Foolish man, how can you eat almsfood knowing that a nun got it prepared? This will not give rise to confidence in those without it … And, monks, this training rule should be recited thus:

Preliminary ruling

‘If a monk eats almsfood knowing that a nun got it prepared, he commits an offense entailing confession.’”

In this way the Master laid down this training rule for the monks.

Second sub-story

Soon afterwards a monk who had earlier left Rājagaha returned to see his family. Because it was long since he had last returned, people prepared food to honor him. And the nun who was associating with that family said to them, “Give food to that monk.” The monk thought, “The Master has prohibited us from eating almsfood when we know that a nun got it prepared,” and being afraid of wrongdoing, he did not accept it. And because he was not able to walk for alms, he missed his meal.

After returning to the monastery, he told the monks what had happened, and they in turn told the Master.

Soon afterwards the Master gave a teaching and addressed the monks, “Monks, I allow you to eat almsfood knowing that a nun got it prepared if the lay person had already intended to prepare it. ” And so, monks, this training rule should be recited thus:

Final ruling

‘If a monk eats almsfood knowing that a nun got it prepared, unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it, he commits an offense entailing confession.’”

Definitions

A: whoever … Monk: … The monk who has been given the full ordination by a complete Order through a procedure consisting of one motion and three announcements that is unchallengeable and fit to stand— this sort of monk is meant in this case.

He knows: he knows by himself or others have told him or the nun has told him.

A nun: she has been given the full ordination by both Orders.

Gets it prepared: if she says to those who do not already want to give or want to prepare, “This monk is a reciter/this monk is learned/this monk is an expert on the discourses/this monk is an expert on the monastic law/this monk is a teacher; ive to this monk/prepare for this monk”—this is called “gets it prepared.”

Almsfood: any of the five staple foods.

Unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it: except if the lay person had intended to prepare it.

The lay person had intended to prepare it: they are relatives or they have invited or they normally give.


If he receives it with the intention of eating it, unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it, he commits an offense of wrong conduct. For every mouthful, he commits an offense entailing confession.

Permutations

If a nun got it prepared, and he perceives that she did, and he eats it, unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it, he commits an offense entailing confession. If a nun got it prepared, but he is unsure if she did, and he eats it, unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it, he commits an offense of wrong conduct. If a nun got it prepared, but he perceives that she did not, and he eats it, unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it, there is no offense.

If a nun who is fully ordained only on one side got it prepared, and he eats it, unless the lay person had already intended to prepare it, he commits an offense of wrong conduct. If a nun did not get it prepared, but he perceives that a nun got it prepared, he commits an offense of wrong conduct.If a nun did not get it prepared, but he is unsure of it, he commits an offense of wrong conduct. If a nun did not get it prepared, and he perceives that a nun did not get it prepared, there is no offense.

Non-offenses

There is no offense: if the lay person had already intended to prepare it; if a trainee nun gets it prepared; if a novice nun gets it prepared; if it is anything apart from the five kinds of staple food; if he is insane; if he is the first offender.


The ninth rule, the training rule on what is got prepared, is finished.