Topic 6: Happiness Here and Now

Readings:

In the Buddha’s Words, pp. 105-142 (“The Happiness Visible in this Present Life”).

Concepts:

Here and now = Present life, in contrast to next life, end of samsara. Focus on social relations.

Advice for monastics

Vinaya is the monastic code, covering deportment, governance and history, Buddha’s ideal community (Sangha), now oldest organization on the planet.

No caste.

For cordiality: kindness in action, speech, thought; sharing, virtue, like-mindedness.

To prosper: harmony, retain rules of training, honor elders, avoid craving, live in forest, mindfulness.

Advice for householders

Reciprocal care: Parent-child, teacher-pupil, wife-husband, friend-friend,
servant-master, lay-ascetic/brahmin

Qualities for future life: faith, moral discipline, generosity, wisdom

Qualities for this life: persistent effort, protection, friendship, balanced living

Happiness for the sensual: possession, enjoyment, freedom from debt, blamelessness

Advice for kings

Wheel-turning monarch (chariots travel without obstruction):

righteous, Dhamma as master,

protector of all subjects

no crime, give wealth to those in need

accept advice of ascetics/brahmins

To overcome a plague of thieves and increase revenue:

give grain and fodder to farmers and ranchers in need

give capital to merchants in need

give proper wages to civil servants

Many suttas on-line for householders: http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=259

 

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