阿  姜  曼  正  傳 

 

第五章第一節:特殊的問題

        

                                        

                 

第五章第一節:特殊的問題

    阿姜曼一抵達曼谷,便依照Somdet Phra Mahā Wirawong所發的電報指示,在Wat Boromaniwat寺裡掛單。在他動身前往烏隆府之前,有許多人來向他頂禮,並向他請教一些問題。其中有些問題相當的特別,所以我決定收錄在傳記裡。

        問:「我知道所有的比丘都必須遵守兩百二十七條戒律,但聽說您只遵守一條而已。這是真的嗎?」

        阿姜曼:「是的,我只遵守一條戒律。」

        問:「那您守的是哪一條戒律?」

        阿姜曼:「我的心。」

        問:「所以,您沒有全守兩百二十七條戒律?」

        阿姜曼:「我守護我的心,不允許身、口、意有任何違反佛陀制定戒律的地方,不管戒律有兩百二十七條或更多,都一樣。那些懷疑我是否遵守兩百二十七條戒律的人,要怎麼想或怎麼說,都隨便他們。對我而言,從出家受戒的那一天起,我就已經嚴格控制我的心,因為它掌控了行為與語言。」

        問:「您的意思是為了要持好戒律,就必須要先守護心嗎?」

        阿姜曼:「如果不是你的心,那還有什麼戒律好持守的呢?只有死人不用去看顧他們的心,更遑論是行為與言語。有智慧的人絕不會說死人有道德的偏見,因為屍體不可能有意志。如果死人真的有道德,那也沒有用。但我不是屍體,所以我不會去守死人的戒律。我需要遵守的是人性中有善惡傾向的人所應遵守的戒律,我必須在戒律中守護我的心。」

        問:「我聽說,控制好我們的行為與言語就叫做道德,這種說法一度讓我以為不一定真的需要看顧好心,所以我才會這樣問。」

        阿姜曼:「戒律使我們的言行受到良好的控制,這一點並沒有錯。但在我們使言行受到規範以前,我們必須先想一想道德規範的源頭,它是言語與行為的主人 —— 心!就是心,使得言行得體適當。一旦我們確信『心』就是關鍵的因緣後,我們就必須弄清楚它跟言行之間的關係,好讓自己的言行符合道德,使我們與他人和樂的相處。心不只是要處理道德的問題,還監督我們所從事的每一項活動,以確保這些活動能適當的完成,每次都能有條理地得到好結果。」

        「就像治病必須先找到病因才能對症下藥,在病情轉變為慢性之前,要針對病因給予適當的治療。要有好的德行,就必須要先控制心,否則,結果就是一種有缺、有穿的戒(千瘡百孔)。像這種破碎、表裡不一的戒行真的很可悲。它使人像行屍走肉般地生活,不可避免傷到整個宗教。此外,持守這樣的戒律不會得到安樂,也不會受到旁人的讚嘆。」

        「我並沒有花太多的時間去研讀經典。我出家後,我的老師讓我成為一名森林的頭陀比丘,並帶著我走入山林。我從樹木、草地、溪流、河流、懸崖與洞穴等處學到了『法』;也從鳥類與各種野生動物的聲音、我周遭的自然環境中學到了『法』。我並沒有讀過太多的經典,所以無法成為一個精通律學的老師。你從我的回答中,就可以看出我只受過基本的教育。我覺得我沒有適當的辯才來指導你,無法回答你的問題。」

        問:「道德的本質是什麼?又真正的戒德是由什麼所構成的?」

        阿姜曼:「保持正念、正思惟,善加守護身口意,控制好這三種因素,使其在道德可容許的範圍之內。透過正確地遵循這些條件,我們就可以確信,我們的行為是符合規範的,絕不會踰矩或令人反感。除了符合規範的身口意,就很難說什麼是真正的戒德,因為戒德無法與持戒的人切割分離。它們不是獨立的個體,就像房屋與屋主的關係一樣,一方面既是房屋;另一方面也是屋主。想要區隔戒德與持戒者會有困難,所以我不會這麼做。甚至連持戒所產生的寧靜,也無法與戒德分割。如果戒德能這樣被分割出來的話,它可能早就在商店中給販售了。在這種情況下,人類的戒德可能會成為小偷所覬覦的標的物,許多人的戒德都會被奪走,然後賣給出價最高的投標者,就像所有其他的財產一樣,戒德變成了煩惱的來源。這會使佛教徒感到厭倦,死抓著他們所獲得的東西不放,變得沒有安全感。因此,無法精確地知道真實戒德的構成因素,是一種可避開產生爭議危險的方法,從而使持戒者可以有技巧地獲得心靈的寧靜。我一直都很小心這種既有的危險,所以從來沒想要去區分自己與所持守的戒德。那些不願意去做這樣區分的人,不管身在何處,也不管他們在做什麼事,都能怡然自得,因為他們絕不會擔心失去戒德。那些把戒德視為身外之物的人,便可能會非常擔心死後會變成鬼,回到人間焦慮地看管生前累積戒德的商店;這就像死前仍掛念財產的人一樣,他們的心黏著在錢財上,他們很執著;於是,變成了鬼,返回人間,焦慮地看守生前所積累的財產。」

 

          

Upon arriving in Bangkok, Ãcariya Mun went to stay at Wat Boromaniwat monastery, following the instructions telegrammed from Somdet Phra Mahã Wirawong. Before he departed for Udon Thani, many people came to see him at Wat Boromaniwat with questions. Some of these questions were rather unusual, so I have decided to include them.

Question: “I understand that you maintain only one rule instead of the full 227 monastic rules that all other monks keep. Is that true?”

Ãcariya Mun: “Yes, I maintain only the one rule.”

Question: “Which one do you maintain?”

Ãcariya Mun: “My mind.”

Question: “So, you don’t maintain all 227 rules?”

Ãcariya Mun: “I maintain my mind by not allowing any wrong thoughts, speech, or actions that would violate the prohibitions laid down by the Buddha, be they 227 in number or even more than that. Those who doubt whether or not I maintain the 227 monastic rules can think and say what they please. As for me, from the day of my ordination I have always maintained strict control over my mind, as it is the master of body and speech.”

Question: “You mean we have to maintain our minds in order to maintain the moral precepts?”

Ãcariya Mun: “What else would you maintain to develop good moral virtue, if not your mind? Only the dead have no need to look after their minds, much less their actions and speech. The wise have never claimed that dead people have a moral bias, it being impossible for corpses to show willful intent. If corpses did have morality, then it would be a dead and useless one. But I am not a corpse, so I cannot maintain a dead man’s morality. I must do what befits one fully endowed with both good and evil tendencies – I must maintain my mind in moral virtue.”

Question: “I’ve heard it said that keeping our actions and speech in good order is called morality, which lead me to understand that it’s not really necessary to look after the mind. That’s why I asked.”

Ãcariya Mun: “It is quite true that morality entails keeping our actions and speech in good order. But before we can put our actions and speech in good moral order, we must consider the source of moral virtue. It originates with the master of body and speech – the mind – which makes them behave properly. Once we have established that the mind is the determining factor, we must ascertain how it relates to action and speech so that they stay in good moral order that is a source of comfort to us and others alike. It’s not only moral virtue that the mind must deal with. The mind supervises the performance of every activity we engage in, making sure that it’s done in a proper, orderly fashion to produce excellent results each time.

“Treating an illness requires diagnosing its cause, then devising an effective cure before it develops into a chronic condition. Taking care of morality requires the mind to be in effective control. Otherwise, the result will be tarnished morality that’s patchy, and full of holes. Such splintered, inconsistent virtue is truly pitiful. It moves people to live an aimless existence and inevitably causes an adverse effect on the entire religion. Besides that, it’s not a source of comfort to the person practicing it, nor is it admired by his peers.

“I have never done much studying. After I ordained, my teacher took me as a wandering monk into the mountains and forests. I learned Dhamma from the trees and grasses, the rivers and the streams, the cliffs and the caves. I learned it from the sounds of birds and wild animals, from the natural environment around me. I didn’t study the scriptures long enough to become well-versed in the teaching on moral virtue; and my answers to your  questions  tend  to  reflect  that  primitive  education.  I feel rather inadequate for my inability to provide answers that would be suitably eloquent for your edification.”

Question: “What is the nature of morality and what constitutes genuine moral virtue?”

Ãcariya  Mun:  “Being  mindfully  aware  of  our  thoughts; knowing which things are appropriate to think about and which are not; taking care how we express ourselves by way of body, speech, and mind; controlling these three factors so that they remain  within  the  confines  of  what  is  morally  acceptable.  By properly adhering to these conditions we can be confident that the moral nature of our behavior is exemplary and we are never unruly or offensive. Apart from such exemplary conduct in body, speech, and mind, it’s difficult to say what genuine moral virtue is, since it’s impossible to separate its practice from the person who maintains it. They are not distinct entities, like a house and its owner – the house on one hand, the owner on another. Trying to distinguish between moral virtue and the person who maintains it is very problematic, so I wouldn’t want to do it. Even the peace of mind resulting from the practice of moral virtue cannot actually be separated from that moral virtue. If morality could be isolated in this manner, it would probably have been on sale in the stores long ago. In such a case, people’s moral virtue would probably become a lucrative target for thieves to steal and sell off to the highest bidder, leaving many people totally deprived. Like all other possessions, moral virtue would then become a source of anxiety. It would cause Buddhists to become weary of striving for it, and insecure about holding onto their acquisition. Consequently, the inability to know what precisely constitutes genuine moral virtue is a way to avoid the dangers arising from moral issues, thus allowing virtuous individuals a clever way to gain peace of mind. Being very wary of the inherent dangers, I have never thought of separating myself from the moral virtue that I practice. Those unwilling to make this separation remain content wherever they go, whatever they do, for they never have to worry about losing their moral virtue. Those who see it as something separate from themselves might worry so much that they end up coming back as ghosts after death to anxiously watch over their store of accumulated virtue. It would be like dying people who fret about their wealth, and therefore, get stuck in a frame of mind where they return as ghosts to keep anxious watch over their accumulated riches.”