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Dhamma˝˝u Sutta

One With a Sense of Dhamma

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
For free distribution only

"A monk endowed with these seven qualities is worthy of gifts, worthy of hospitality, worthy of offerings, worthy of respect, an unexcelled field of merit for the world. Which seven? There is the case where a monk is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, a sense of moderation, a sense of time, a sense of social gatherings, and a sense of distinctions among individuals.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of Dhamma? There is the case where a monk knows the Dhamma: dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question and answer sessions [the earliest classifications of the Buddha's teachings]. If he didn't know the Dhamma -- dialogues, narratives of mixed prose and verse, explanations, verses, spontaneous exclamations, quotations, birth stories, amazing events, question and answer sessions -- he wouldn't be said to be one with a sense of Dhamma. So it's because he does know the Dhamma -- dialogues... question and answer sessions -- that he is said to be one with a sense of Dhamma. This is one with a sense of Dhamma.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of meaning? There is the case where a monk knows the meaning of this and that statement -- 'This is the meaning of that statement; that is the meaning of this.' If he didn't know the meaning of this and that statement -- 'this is the meaning of that statement; that is the meaning of this' -- he wouldn't be said to be one with a sense of meaning. So it's because he does know the meaning of this and that statement -- 'this is the meaning of that statement; that is the meaning of this' -- that he is said to be one with a sense of meaning. This is one with a sense of Dhamma and a sense of meaning.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of himself? There is the case where a monk knows himself: 'This is how far I have come in conviction, virtue, learning, liberality, discernment, quick-wittedness.' If he didn't know himself -- 'This is how far I have come in conviction, virtue, learning, liberality, discernment, quick-wittedness' -- he wouldn't be said to be one with a sense of himself. So it's because he does know himself -- 'This is how far I have come in conviction, virtue, learning, liberality, discernment, quick-wittedness' -- that he is said to be one with a sense of himself. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, and a sense of himself.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of moderation? There is the case where a monk knows moderation in accepting robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicinal requisites for curing the sick. If he didn't know moderation in accepting robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicinal requisites for curing the sick, he wouldn't be said to be one with a sense of moderation. So it's because he does know moderation in accepting robes, alms-food, lodgings, and medicinal requisites for curing the sick, that he is said to be one with a sense of moderation. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, and a sense of moderation.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of time? There is the case where a monk knows the time: 'This is the time for recitation; this, the time for questioning; this, the time for making an effort [in meditation]; this, the time for seclusion.' If he didn't know the time -- 'this is the time for recitation; this, the time for questioning; this, the time for making an effort; this, the time for seclusion' -- he wouldn't be said to be one with a sense of time. So it's because he does know the time -- 'this is the time for recitation; this, the time for questioning; this, the time for making an effort; this, the time for seclusion' -- that he is said to be one with a sense of time. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, a sense of moderation, and a sense of time.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of social gatherings? There is the case where a monk knows his social gathering: 'This is a social gathering of noble warriors; this, a social gathering of priests; this, a social gathering of householders; this, a social gathering of contemplatives; here one should approach them in this way, stand in this way, act in this way, sit in this way, speak in this way, stay silent in this way.' If he didn't know his social gathering -- 'This is a social gathering of noble warriors; this, a social gathering of priests; this, a social gathering of householders; this, a social gathering of contemplatives; here one should approach them in this way, stand in this way, act in this way, sit in this way, speak in this way, stay silent in this way' -- he wouldn't be said to be one with a sense of social gatherings. So it's because he does know his social gathering -- 'This is a social gathering of noble warriors; this, a social gathering of priests; this, a social gathering of householders; this, a social gathering of contemplatives; here one should approach them in this way, stand in this way, act in this way, sit in this way, speak in this way, stay silent in this way' -- that he is said to be one with a sense of social gatherings. This is one with a sense of Dhamma, a sense of meaning, a sense of himself, a sense of moderation, a sense of time, and a sense of social gatherings.

"And how is a monk one with a sense of distinctions among individuals? There is the case where people are known to monk in terms of two categories.

"Of two people -- one who wants to see noble ones and one who doesn't -- the one who doesn't want to see noble ones is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does want to see noble ones is, for that reason, to be praised.

"Of two people who want to see noble ones -- one who wants to hear the true Dhamma and one who doesn't -- the one who doesn't want to hear the true Dhamma is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does want to hear the true Dhamma is, for that reason, to be praised.

"Of two people who want to hear the true Dhamma -- one who listens with an attentive ear and one who listens without an attentive ear -- the one who listens without an attentive ear is to be criticized for that reason, the one who listens with an attentive ear is, for that reason, to be praised.

"Of two people who listen with an attentive ear -- one who, having listened to the Dhamma, remembers it, and one who doesn't -- the one who, having listened to the Dhamma, doesn't remember it is to be criticized for that reason, the one who, having listened to the Dhamma, does remember the Dhamma is, for that reason, to be praised.

"Of two people who, having listened to the Dhamma, remember it -- one who explores the meaning of the Dhamma he has remembered and one who doesn't -- the one who doesn't explore the meaning of the Dhamma he has remembered is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does explore the meaning of the Dhamma he has remembered is, for that reason, to be praised.

"Of two people who explore the meaning of the Dhamma they have remembered -- one who practices the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning, and one who doesn't -- the one who doesn't practice the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning, is to be criticized for that reason, the one who does practice the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning is, for that reason, to be praised.

"Of two people who practice the Dhamma in line with the Dhamma, having a sense of Dhamma, having a sense of meaning -- one who practices for both his own benefit and that of others, and one who practices for his own benefit but not that of others -- the one who practices for his own benefit but not that of others is to be criticized for that reason, the one who practices for both his own benefit and that of others is, for that reason, to be praised.

"This is how people are known to a monk in terms of two categories. And this is how a monk is one with a sense of distinctions among individuals.

"A monk endowed with these seven qualities is worthy of gifts, worthy of hospitality, worthy of offerings, worthy of respect, an unexcelled field of merit for the world."

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