DN2. The Shorter Section on Ethics

Sāmaññaphala Sutta ("The Fruits of the Ascetic Life")

And how, great king, is a mendicant accomplished in ethics? It’s when a mendicant gives up killing living creatures, renouncing the rod and the sword. They’re scrupulous and kind, living full of compassion for all living beings. This pertains to their ethics.

They give up stealing. They take only what’s given, and expect only what’s given. They keep themselves clean by not thieving. This pertains to their ethics.

They give up unchastity. They are celibate, set apart, avoiding the common practice of sex. This pertains to their ethics.

They give up lying. They speak the truth and stick to the truth. They’re honest and trustworthy, and don’t trick the world with their words. This pertains to their ethics.

They give up divisive speech. They don’t repeat in one place what they heard in another so as to divide people against each other. Instead, they reconcile those who are divided, supporting unity, delighting in harmony, loving harmony, speaking words that promote harmony. This pertains to their ethics.

They give up harsh speech. They speak in a way that’s mellow, pleasing to the ear, lovely, going to the heart, polite, likable and agreeable to the people. This pertains to their ethics.

They give up talking nonsense. Their words are timely, true, and meaningful, in line with the teaching and training. They say things at the right time which are valuable, reasonable, succinct, and beneficial. This pertains to their ethics.

They refrain from injuring plants and seeds. They eat in one part of the day, abstaining from eating at night and food at the wrong time. They avoid dancing, singing, music, and seeing shows. They refrain from beautifying and adorning themselves with garlands, fragrance, and makeup. They avoid high and luxurious beds. They avoid receiving gold and money, raw grains, raw meat, women and girls, male and female bondservants, goats and sheep, chickens and pigs, elephants, cows, horses, and mares, and fields and land. They refrain from running errands and messages; buying and selling; falsifying weights, metals, or measures; bribery, fraud, cheating, and duplicity; mutilation, murder, abduction, banditry, plunder, and violence. This pertains to their ethics.

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