Theravāda Vinayapiṭaka

Monks’ rules and their analysis

Monks’ Training (Sekhiya) 1

These rules for training, venerable ones, come up for recitation.

At that time the enlightened one, the lord was staying at Sāvatthī in the Jeta Grove in Anāthapiṇḍika’s monastery. Now at that time the group of six monks dressed with the inner robe hanging down in front and behind. People … spread it about, saying:

“How can these recluses, sons of the Sakyans, dress with the inner robe hanging down in front and behind, just like householders who enjoy the pleasures of the senses?”

Monks heard these people who … spread it about. Those who were modest monks … spread it about, saying:

“How can this group of six monks dress with the inner robe hanging down in front and behind?” Then these monks told this matter to the lord. Then the lord on this occasion in this connection, [having given reasoned talk], having had the Order of monks convened, questioned the group of six monks, saying:

“Is it true, as is said, that you, monks, dressed with the inner robe hanging down in front and behind?”

“It is true, lord.”

The enlightened one, the lord, rebuked them, saying:

“How can you, foolish men, dress with the inner robe hanging down in front and behind? It is not, foolish men, for pleasing those who are not (yet) pleased … And thus, monks, this rule of training should be set forth:

“‘I will dress with the inner robe all round (me),’ is a training to be observed.”

The inner robe should be dressed in (going) all round one for covering the circle of the navel, the circles of the knees. Whoever out of disrespect dresses with an inner robe hanging down in front or behind, there is an offence of wrong-doing.

There is no offence if it is unintentional, if he is not thinking, if he does not know, if he is ill, if there are accidents, if he is mad, if he is the first wrong-doer.