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Academic Sutta Name Notes PSA Plae Vagga Nikaya PTS Keywords

V:14 A lay disciple and a stubborn monk (Citta and Sudhamma)

Citta, a householder, once met Venerable Mahanama, one of the first five disciples of the Buddha, going on an almsround, and invited the monk to his house. There, he offered almsfood to him and after listening to the discourse given by him, Citta realised the Dhamma. Later, Citta built a monastery in his mango grove. There, he looked to the needs of all the bhikkhus who came to the monastery and one Bhikkhu Sudhamma was installed as the resident bhikkhu.

One day, the two Chief Disciples of the Buddha, Venerable Sariputta and Venerable Maha Moggallana, came to the monastery. After listening to the discourse given by Sariputta, Citta attained the third stage of Sainthood. Then, he invited Sariputta and Moggallana to his house for almsfood the next day. He also invited Sudhamma, who refused in anger and said, 'You invited me only after the other two.' Citta repeated his invitation, but it was again turned down. Nevertheless, Sudhamma went to the house of Citta early on the following- day. But when invited to enter the house, he refused and said that he would not sit down as he was going on his almsround. But when he saw the things that were to be offered to the monks, he envied them so much that he could not restrain his anger. He abused Citta and said, 'I don't want to stay in your monastery any longer,' and left the house in anger.

Sudhamma reported everything that had happened to the Buddha, who said, 'You have offended a lay-disciple who is endowed with faith and generosity. You must go back to him and own up your mistake.' Sudhamma did as he was told, but Citta felt he should be made to realise his mistake and therefore did not accept his apology. Sudhamma went to see the Buddha for the second time, then the Buddha said, 'My son, a good bhikkhu should have no attachment; a good bhikkhu should not be conceited and say,'This is my monastery, this is my place, these are my lay-disciples, etc., for in one with such thoughts, covetousness and pride will increase.'

At the end of the admonition, Sudhamma went to the house of Citta, and this time they were reconciled; and within a few days, Sudhamma attained Arahanthood.

55/170 Dhammapada & Commentary Khuddhaka J.i.106ff. despair

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Last modified on: Sunday, 13 August 2000.