Majjhima Nikāya I.
4. 2. Verañjakasuttaṃ
(42) The Discourse to the Householders of Veranjaka

I heard thus.

At one time the Blessed One was living in the monastery offered by Anāthapiṅḍika in Jeta's grove in Sāvatthi. At that time the brahmin householders of Veranjaka were resident in Sāvatthi, having come to Sāvatthi on some purpose. They heard that. the good recluse Gotama, the son of the Sakyas, who had gone forth from the clan of the Sakyas was abiding in the monastery offered by Anāthapiṅḍika in Jeta's grove in Sāvatthi. Such fame had spread about him, the Blessed One is perfect, rightfully enlightened, endowed with knowledge and conduct, is well gone. He is knower of worlds, and is the incomparable tamer of those to be tamed. He is Teacher of gods and men, is enlightened and blessed. To this world of gods and men, together with its Māras, Brahmās, the community of recluses, brahmins, gods and men, he declares a teaching by himself known and realised. It is good at the beginning, in the middle and at the end. It is full of meaning even in the letters and proclaims the pure and complete, holy life. It is good to see such noble ones. Then the brahmin householders of Veranja approached the Blessed One. Some worshipped the Blessed One, some exchanged friendly greetings with the Blessed One, some clasped hands towards the Blessed One, some announced their clan and name, and some were silent. They all sat on a side. Then those brahmin householders said thus to the Blessed One: Good Gotama, why do some beings go to loss, to hell after death and why do some others go to increase and be born in heaven, after death? O! householders, owing to misbehaving and not living according to the Teaching some go to loss go to hell and others conducting themselves well and living according to the Teaching go to increase and are born in heaven, after death. We do not understand this short exposition of good Gotama. Good if this short exposition be explained to us. The Blessed One said, then householders listen and attend carefully I will explain.

O! householders, threefold is wrong conduct by body, fourfold is wrong conduct by words, and threefold is wrong conduct by mind. Householders, what is the threefold bodily wrong conduct?. Here, a certain one is cruel, destroys living things, is with bloody hands. Engaged in destroying living things without compassion. From village or forest takes others' possessions stealthily. Takes what is not given. . Misbehaves in sexuality, misbehaving with those protected by father, mother, mother and father, by brother, sister, relations, with those with a husband, becoming liable to punishment, or even those garlanded and made to promise. Householders this is the threefold bodily wrong conduct. Householders, what is the fourfold verbal wrong conduct? Here, householders, a certain one tells lies, in an assembly, at a gathering, amidst relations, gone to the guild, or in the presence of the royal family. Called upon to stand witness and asked to tell what he knows, not knowing would say I know. Knowing would say I do not know. Not seeing would say I saw, seeing would say, I did not see. Thus for his benefit, for another's benefit, or for some small gain he would tell lies with awareness. Would slander, hearing here would tell it elsewhere to make a split here. Hearing elsewhere would tell it here to make a split there. Thus he disunites the united, fond of disuniting talks words to disunite. Would talk roughly, saying insolent words that are sharp and cursing. Words bordering on anger and not conductive to concentration. Would say frivolous, untimely, untruthful words, not in keeping with the Teaching and the discipline. Words that could not be treasured. Householders, this is the fourfold verbal wrong conduct. Householders, what is the threefold mental wrong conduct? Here, householders, one covets [1] others' possessions, thinks may those things be mine. Is angry with a defiled mind, thinks may they come to destruction and not exist. Is with wrong, perverted view that there are no results for a gift and sacrfice. There are no results for pure and impure actions. There is no this world, no other world, no mother, father, no spontaneously arisen beings and no recluses and brahmins who have come to the right path and by themselves realising declare this world and the other world. Householders, this is the threefold mental wrong conduct O! householders, on account of this wrong conduct and not living in accordance with the Teaching, a certain one after death is born in loss and go to hell. [2]

O! householders, right conduct by body is threefold, by words fourfold and by mind threefold. Householders, what is the threefold right bodily conduct? Here, a certain one abstains from destroying living things, throwing away stick and weapon ashamed abides compassionate to all living things In village or forest does not take what is not given, the possessions of others. Does not misbehave in sexuality, not misbehaving with those protected by father, mother, mother and father, brother, sister, relations, or with those with a husband, becoming liable to punishment, or even those garlanded and made to promise. Householders this is the threefold right conduct by body. Householders, what is the fourfold right conduct by words?. Here, householders, a certain one does not tell lies. In an assembly, a gathering, in the midst of relations, gone to the guild, or in the presence of the royal family, called upon to stand witness, when asked to tell what he knows, not knowing would say, I do not know. Knowing would say I know. Not seeing would say I did not see, and seeing would say, I saw. Thus for his own good or for another's or for some small gain he would not tell lies with awareness. Would not slander, hearing here would not tell it elsewhere to make a split here. Hearing elsewhere would not tell it here to make a split there. Thus does not disunite the united, fond of uniting would talk words to unite. Would not talk roughly, saying polite loving words going straight to the heart, words pleasing to the populace at large. Not talking frivolously, would talk words that are timely, truthful and in accordance with the Teaching and the discipline. Words that could be treasured. Householders, this is the fourfold right conduct in words. Householders, what is the threefold mental good conduct? Here, householders, one does not covet others' possessions, thinking may they be mine. Is not angry and not with a defiled mind, thinking may these beings be well and happy. Is with right view not perverted. There are results for a gift and sacrifice There are results for pure and impure actions. There is this world, and the other world There is mother, father, and spontaneously arisen beings. In this world there are recluses and brahmins who have come to the right path and by themselves realising declare this world and the other world. Householders, this is the threefold mental right conduct. On account of this right conduct and living according to the Teaching, a certain one after death is born in increase in heaven. [3]

Householders, if someone living in right conduct, according to the Teaching, were to wish, may I be born with the warrior householders after death, there is a possibility that he will be born with the warrior householders, after death. What is the reason: It happens to him living in right conduct, according to the Teaching. -may I be born with the brahmin householders after death,--with the householder stock after death, There is a possibility, that he will be born with the householder stock after death. . Householders, if someone living in right conduct, according to the Teaching, were to wish, may I be born with the retinue of the protecting gods - with the retinue of the gods of the thirty-three,--with the Yāma gods,--with the gods of happiness, --with the gods attached to creating, -- with the gods attached to creating others, with gods holding brahma bodies, -- with the gods of lustre,--with gods of limited lustre,--with gods of limitless lustre,--with the radiant gods,-- with the gods of pleasantness,--with the gods of limited pleasantness,-- with the gods of limitless pleasantness,--with the gods full of happiness,--with the gods wielding power in space,--with the gods of non-destruction, --with the dissatisfied gods,--with the gods with insight,--with the gods of the highest heaven,--with the retinue of gods, in the sphere of space, in the sphere of consciousness, in the sphere of neither -perception -nor -non -perception, after death, there is a possibility, that they will be born, with the retinue of the gods in the sphere of neither-perception-nor-non- perception. What is the reason. It happens to those living in right conduct, according to the Teaching. If someone living in right conduct according to the Teaching were to wish, may I destroying desires, the mind released and released through wisdom, here and now realise and abide, there is a possibility that he should, destroying desires, the mind released and released through wisdom, here and now will realise and abide. What is the reason: It happens to those living in right conduct

When this was said, the brahmin householders of Sālā said thus to the Blessed One. Now we understand venerable sir. It is as though good Gotama has reinstated something that was over turned. Made manifest something that was covered. As though the path was told to those who have lost their way. As though an oil lamp was lighted for those who have sight to see forms. Thus in many ways the Teaching is explained. Now we take refuge in good Gotama, in the Teaching and the Community of bhikkhus. We are disciples who have taken refuge in good Gotama, from today until life lasts.


[1] To covet (abhijjhālu hoti) is something done with the mind. It's to think greedily of other's possessions. It is one of the ten demerits.

[2] On account of this wrong conduct and not living according to the Teaching, a certain one after death is born in loss and go to hell (evaṃ adhammacariyā visamacariyā hetu kho gahapatayo evamidhekacce sattā kāyassa bedhā paraṃ maranā apāyaṃ duggatiṃ vinipātaṃ nirayaṃ uppajjanti). The Blessed One here does not mention that all those who follow the wrong conduct and do not live according the Teaching, after death, go to loss and hell. So there is an interrogation. We should make a thorough inquiry into this.

[3] On account of this right conduct and living according to the Teaching, a certain one after death is born in increase in heaven (evaṃ dhammacariyā samacariyā hetu kho gahapatayo evamidhekacce sattā kāyassa bedhā paraṃ maranā sugatiṃ saggaṃ lokaṃ uppajjanti). Again the Blessed One here does not mention, that all those who follow the right conduct and live according to the Teaching, after death are born in increase, in heaven. The mere following up of these ten actions of merit -'dasakusalakammā'do not lead one to heaven, there should be some convincement about one's actions. So the Blessed One in this Sutta explains that the doer of those actions should have some aspiration for something higher than what one is now established in. There should be the nature