Potaliya Sutta – Why Householders are Not Monks

Indeed, in the Vinaya Discipline, a member of the Sangha is defined as someone who has left the life of a householder and taken the all the monastic vows as decreed within the Vinaya Discipline. The breaking of these vows either attracts reforming behaviour, or expulsion from the order. However, the Vinaya Discipline also defines a ‘member of the Sangha’ as someone who has ‘realised emptiness’ irrespective as to whether they have renounced the lay-life.

The Dhammapada and the Uncreate

The Pali word ‘akata’ translates as ‘uncreate’, and this has been translated into the Chinese language through the use of the Daoist term ‘Wu Wei’ (無為). This is important in implication for the Ch’an idiom ‘language of the uncreate’., as it means that Ch’an doctrine is not only securely rooted in Buddhist scripture, but rooted in the earliest strata of that scripture.

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