The Connected Discourses of the Buddha - Selections

Chapter 46. Bojjhaṅgasaṃyutta: Connected Discourses on the Factors of Enlightenment

V. Wheel-Turning Monarch

41 (1) Discriminations
At Sāvatthī. “Bhikkhus, whatever ascetics or brahmins in the past abandoned the three discriminations, all did so because they had developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment. Whatever ascetics or brahmins in the future will abandon the three discriminations, all will do so because they will have developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment. Whatever ascetics or brahmins at present abandon the three discriminations, all do so because they have developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment. What seven? The enlightenment factor of mindfulness … the enlightenment factor of equanimity. Whatever ascetics or brahmins in the past … in the future … at present abandon the three discriminations, all do so because they have developed and cultivated these seven factors of enlightenment.” [99]

42 (2) Wheel-Turning Monarch
“Bhikkhus, with the manifestation of a wheel-turning monarch comes the manifestation of seven gems. What seven? There comes the manifestation of the wheel-gem, the elephant-gem, the horse-gem, the jewel-gem, the woman-gem, the steward-gem, and the commander-gem.
    “With the manifestation of a Tathāgata, bhikkhus, an Arahant, a Perfectly Enlightened One, comes the manifestation of the seven gems of the factors of enlightenment. What seven? There comes the manifestation of the gem of the enlightenment factor of mindfulness … the gem of the enlightenment factor of equanimity. With the manifestation of a Tathāgata, an Arahant, a Perfectly Enlightened One, comes the manifestation of these seven gems of the factors of enlightenment.”

43 (3) Māra
“Bhikkhus, I will teach you the path crushing the army of Māra. Listen to that….
    “And what, bhikkhus, is the path crushing the army of Māra? It is the seven factors of enlightenment. What seven? The enlightenment factor of mindfulness … the enlightenment factor of equanimity. This is the path crushing the army of Māra.”

44 (4) Unwise
Then a certain bhikkhu approached the Blessed One … and said to him:
    “Venerable sir, it is said, ‘an unwise dolt, an unwise dolt.’ In what way, venerable sir, is one called ‘an unwise dolt’?”
    “Bhikkhus, it is because one has not developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment that one is called ‘an unwise dolt.’ [100] What seven? The enlightenment factor of mindfulness … the enlightenment factor of equanimity. It is because one has not developed and cultivated these seven factors of enlightenment that one is called ‘an unwise dolt.’”

45 (5) Wise
“Venerable sir, it is said, ‘wise and alert, wise and alert.’ In what way, venerable sir, is one called ‘wise and alert’?”
    “Bhikkhus, it is because one has developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment that one is called ‘wise and alert.’ What seven?” (As above.)

46 (6) Poor
“Venerable sir, it is said, ‘poor, poor.’ In what way, venerable sir, is one called ‘poor’?”
    “Bhikkhus, it is because one has not developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment that one is called ‘poor.’ What seven?” (As above.)

47 (7) Prosperous
“Venerable sir, it is said, ‘prosperous, prosperous.’ In what way, venerable sir, is one called ‘prosperous’?”
    “Bhikkhus, it is because one has developed and cultivated the seven factors of enlightenment that one is called ‘prosperous.’ What seven?” (As above.) [101]

48 (8) The Sun
“Bhikkhus, this is the forerunner and precursor of the rising of the sun, that is, the dawn. So too, for a bhikkhu this is the forerunner and precursor of the arising of the seven factors of enlightenment, that is, good friendship. When a bhikkhu has a good friend, it is to be expected that he will develop and cultivate the seven factors of enlightenment.
    “And how does a bhikkhu who has a good friend develop and cultivate the seven factors of enlightenment? Here, bhikkhus, a bhikkhu develops the enlightenment factor of mindfulness … he develops the enlightenment factor of equanimity, which is based upon seclusion, dispassion, and cessation, maturing in release. It is in this way that a bhikkhu who has a good friend develops and cultivates the seven factors of enlightenment.”

49 (9) Internal Factor
“Bhikkhus, as to internal factors, I do not see any other factor that is so helpful for the arising of the seven factors of enlightenment as this: careful attention. When a bhikkhu is accomplished in careful attention, it is to be expected that he will develop and cultivate the seven factors of enlightenment.” (The rest as in §13.) [102]

50 (10) External Factor
“Bhikkhus, as to external factors, I do not see any other factor that is so helpful for the arising of the seven factors of enlightenment as this: good friendship. When a bhikkhu has a good friend, it is to be expected that he will develop and cultivate the seven factors of enlightenment.” (The rest as in §12.)
 

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© Bhikkhu Bodhi, The Connected Discourses of the Buddha (Wisdom Publications, 2000)

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