According to the Scriptures, in the early years of the Buddha’s teaching, the Order lived together in harmony without Discipline (Vinaya), since it was not necessary, because all the Buddha’s first disciples were very conscious, if not fully enlightened.As the Sangha grew, situations arose that both the Buddha and the lay community that held them considered inappropriate for the renunciates.
The vinaya was compiled in the First Council shortly after the Buddha’s death, and recited by Upāli, with a small later addition. Most of the different versions are quite similar, so it is considered that the Vinaya is quite early, that is, it dates from before the separation of the schools.
The content of the Basket of Discipline is divided into:
- Vibhaṅga Sutta – the basic rules of conduct (Patimokkha) for bhikkhus and bhikkhunis, together with the «story of origin» for each one.
- Mahavagga (Great Chapter): In addition to the rules of conduct and etiquette of the Sangha, this section contains several important texts similar to the suttas, which include a recount of the period immediately after the Buddha’s awakening, his first sermons to the group of five monks and stories. of how some of his great disciples joined the Sangha and they themselves achieved the Awakening.
- Cūḷavagga (Small Chapter): an elaboration of the protocol and the duties of the bhikkhus, as well as the rules and procedures to deal with the crimes that can be committed within the Sangha.
III. Parivara – A recap of the previous sections, with summaries of the rules classified and reclassified in various ways for instructional purposes.
Within the Mahavagga, we find «The Story of Rahula.»
This anecdote refers to the Buddha’s visit to his homeland of Kapilavatthu and the meeting at Suddhodhana’s home with a boy, named Rahula, whom his mother offers him to order. This occasion is used by the Buddha to allow the refuge of the novices as long as they leave the home with the permission of the parents.
Up to here it does not seem anything extraordinary or abnormal. The funny thing came later when they started «free translations» and changed the meaning of some words, such as Pitā which literally means «one who protects» or devī which means, Goddess or «divine woman», and dāyajjaṃ «provision» or legacy .
So, the first paragraph:
Atha kho bhagavā rājagahe yathābhirantaṃ viharitvā yena kapilavatthu tena cārikaṃ pakkāmi. Anupubbena cārikaṃ caramāno yena kapilavatthu tadavasari. Tatra sudaṃ bhagavā sakkesu viharati kapilavatthusmiṃ nigrodhārāme. Atha kho bhagavā pubbaṇhasamayaṃ nivāsetvā pattacīvaramādāya yena suddhodanassa sakkassa nivesanaṃ tenupasaṅkami, upasaṅkamitvā paññatte āsane nisīdi. Atha kho rāhulamātā devī rāhulaṃ kumāraṃ etadavoca- «that you, rāhula, pitā . Gacchassu, dāyajjaṃ yācāhī «ti.
Which is translated as follows:
Then the Lord, having stayed in Rājagaha for as long as he thought fit, went to Kapilavatthu. Walking on tour, in due time, he came to Kapilavatthu. The Lord stayed there among the sakyas in Kapilavatthu in the Banyan monastery. Then the Lord, having dressed in the morning, taking his bowl and his tunic, went to the abode of Suddhodana the sakya; Having approached, he sat in the designated seat.Then a divine woman, the mother of Rāhula, spoke thus to the child Rāhula: «This, Rāhula, this is who protects you , go and ask him to provide you «.
We would stay like this:
Then the Lord, having stayed in Rājagaha for as long as he thought fit, went to Kapilavatthu. Walking on tour, in due time, he came to Kapilavatthu. The Lord stayed there among the Sakyas in Kapilavatthu in the Banyan monastery. Then the Lord, having dressed in the morning, taking his bowl and his robe, approached the abode of Suddhodana the Sakyan; Having approached, he sat in the designated seat. Then the queen , the mother of Rāhula, spoke thus to the child Rāhula: «This, Rāhula, this is your father , go and ask for your inheritance .»
There are only three words, but enough, as we will see later, to mount all the legend of Prince Siddharta that everyone remembers, except those who know the suttas, who do not understand where the story comes from.
This paragraph gives rise to the fact that the Buddha had a son, so the mother was his wife (it could not be assumed that they were not married) that they end up calling her Yasodhara. Suddhodhana happens to be king, father of the Buddha and grandfather of Rahula and they put a mother who call her Maha Devi … and with that plot they begin to build the legend.
We see what can be built from three translation errors: a huge lie, even bigger than the same character. If today we ask anyone, Buddhist or not, they will tell you that Siddhartha (» the one who got it «) was a prince who left his palace full of pleasures and became a renunciant …
The story of Rāhula
Then the Lord, having stayed in Rājagaha for as long as he thought fit, went to Kapilavatthu. Walking on tour, in due time, he came to Kapilavatthu. The Lord stayed there among the sakyas in Kapilavatthu in the Banyan monastery. Then the Lord, having dressed in the morning, taking his bowl and his tunic, went to the abode of Suddhodana the sakya; Having approached, he sat in the designated seat.Then a divine woman, the mother of Rāhula, spoke thus to the child Rāhula: «This, Rāhula, is who protects you, go and ask him to provide you.»
Then the child Rāhula approached the Lord; As he approached, he stood before the Lord and said: «Nice is your shadow, monk.» Then the Lord, rising from his seat, left. Then the child Rāhula, following closely the Lord, said: «Give me my provision, monk, give me my provision, monk.» Then the Lord addressed the venerable Sāriputta, saying: Well, then, Sāriputta, let it be ordered. «
«How can I, Lord, allow the child Rāhula to be ordained?»
Then the Lord on this occasion, in relation to this, after giving a reasoned talk, addressed the monks, saying: «Allow, monks, the departure of the novices to go to the three shelters. And so, monks, you must allow the abandonment to the novice: first, having cut off his hair and beard, having got (someone) to offer him a yellow robe, having placed his top robe over one shoulder, having him sit on his haunches, having made him salute with his palms together, he should be told: «Speak thus:» I take refuge in the Buddha, I take refuge in the Dhamma, I take refuge in the Order.And a second time, I take … And a third time, I take … in the Order «.
«Allow, monks, the ordination for the novices through the three trips to the refuge.»Then the venerable Sāriputta allowed the ordination of the child Rāhula. Then Suddhodana the sakya approached the Lord; having approached, having greeted the Lord, he sat at a respectful distance. While sitting at a respectful distance, Suddhodana, the sakya, spoke thus to the Lord:
– «Lord, I ask for your blessing.»
– «But, Gotama, the Tathagata is beyond bestowing blessings.»
– «Sir, this is allowed, this is irreproachable.»
– «Speak, Gotama.»
– «Lord, when the Lord left home, there was a bit of sadness, as did Nanda; But the grief was huge when Rāhula did it. The affection for a son, Lord, cuts on the skin, having cut the skin, cut into the skin, cutting the skin that cuts into the flesh … the ligaments … the bones, cutting the bones and reaching the marrow, remains. It would be fine, Lord, if the teachers did not allow a child to leave without the consent of the parents. «
Then the Lord rejoiced, rejoiced, awakened, enchanted Suddhodana the sakya with a talk about the Dhamma. Then Suddhodana, the sakya, was happy … enchanted by the Lord in speaking about the dhamma, rising from his seat, having greeted the Lord, departed keeping his right side towards him. Then the Lord on this occasion, in connection with this, after giving a reasoned talk, addressed the monks, saying:
«Monks, a child who does not have the consent of their parents should not be left to order. Whoever allows (one of them) to be ordered, commits an offense. «
Then, the Lord, having stayed in Kapilavatthu for as long as he thought fit, turned to Sāvatthī. Walking on tour, in due time, he came to Sāvatthī. The Lord stayed there in Sāvatthī, in the forest of Jeta, in the monastery of Anāthapiṇḍika. Now, at that moment, the family supporting the venerable Sāriputta sent a young man to the venerable Sāriputta, saying:
– «May the old man allow this young man to leave home.»
Then, the venerable Sāriputta said:
– «He says that two novices should not attend a (monk), and Rāhula is my novice.Now, what course of action should I follow? «
He told this matter to the Lord. He said:
«Permit monks, let there be two novices to assist a competent and experienced monk, or as many as he is able to exhort and instruct.»