Kalama Sutta: The Buddha’s Charter of Free Inquiry The Kalamas who were inhabitants of Kesaputta: “Reverend Gotama, the monk, the son of the Sakiyans, . A Look at the Kalama Sutta by Bhikkhu Bodhi. The discourse has been described as “the Buddha’s Charter of Free Inquiry,” and though the discourse certainly. Kalama Sutta. The people of Kalama asked the Buddha who to believe out of all the ascetics, sages, venerables, and holy ones who, like himself, passed.

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Does absence of delusion appear in a man for his benefit or harm? We, venerable sir, go to the Blessed One for refuge, to the Dhamma for refuge, and to the Community of Bhikkhus for refuge. Retrieved from ” https: Then, your Buddhist quality of awakening will grow fat and robust, rather than skinny and weak. Nevertheless, after advising the Kalamas not to rely upon established tradition, abstract reasoning, and charismatic gurus, the Buddha proposes to them a teaching that is immediately verifiable and capable of laying a firm foundation for a life of moral discipline and mental purification.

Let us not retreat from giving this Christmas December 23, This page was last edited on 3 Octoberat The Kalamas, citizens of the town of Kesaputta, had been visited by religious teachers of divergent views, each of whom would propound his own doctrines and tear down the doctrines of his predecessors. Or should we wait until we have sufficient reason to try just a little of it first, to see if it truly gives good results, before fully relying on it?

Thus it strikes us here. Or do we meet in these claims just another set of variations on that egregious old tendency to interpret the Dhamma according to whatever notions are congenial to oneself – or to those to whom one is preaching?

Critical Thinking in Buddhism: The Kalama Sutta

False or incorrect information does not become true because it is repeated over and over. As if, venerable sir, a person were to turn face upwards what is upside down, or to uncover the concealed, or to point the way to one who is lost or to carry a lamp in the darkness, thinking, ‘Those sutfa have eyes will see visible objects,’ so has the Dhamma been set forth in many ways by the Blessed One.


Gotama lists the various forms of information that should be questioned: This, in kalaama, marks the acquisition of right view, in its preliminary role as the forerunner of the entire Noble Kalamw Path. Instead, sutts Buddha says, only when one personally knows that a certain teaching is skillful, blameless, praiseworthy, and conducive to happiness, and that it is praised by the wise, should one then accept it as true and practice it.

They also expound and explain only their own doctrines; the doctrines of others they despise, revile, and pull to pieces. This is merely one branch of study used to try to figure out the truth.

The other animals saw it running at full strength, and then so frightened and excited each other that they ran after it.

Then I see myself purified in any case. Nowadays the world has been shrunk by superb communications.

The full text can be read on the Kalaja University website. The passage that has been cited so often runs as follows: Its monastic character, where followers revered monks, malama rituals encouraged popular devotion.

Some other monks and brahmins too, venerable sir, come to Kesaputta. Now this passage, like everything else spoken by the Buddha, has been stated in a specific context – with a particular audience and situation in view – and thus must be understood in relation to that context. Although a formally ordained ascetic, Buddhadasa developed a personal view that rejected specific religious identification and kalamz all faiths as principally one. Then the Kalamas who were inhabitants of Kesaputta went to where the Blessed One was.

When there are reasons for doubt, uncertainty is born.

Partly in reaction to dogmatic religion, partly in subservience to the reigning paradigm of objective scientific knowledge, it has become fashionable to hold, by appeal to the Kalama Sutta, that the Buddha’s teaching dispenses with faith and formulated doctrine and asks us to accept only what we can personally verify.


It is true the Buddha does not ask the Kalamas to accept anything he says out of confidence in himself, but let us note one important point: Skip to secondary content. People often defend a point of view by repeatedly asserting it, usually with rising voices and tempers. We are not to accept something because it is an axiom, axiomatic, that is, an unquestioned, apparently self evident, or assumed truth.

Kalama Sutta – Wikipedia

Which spoke the truth and which falsehood? The Kalamas who were inhabitants of Kesaputta: Does this world, which is intoxicated with freedom really know or have surta in line with the principle of the Kalama Sutta? Each population should choose whichever system suits the particular circumstances that it faces. Are these things skilful or unskilful good or bad?

Do not believe just because something fits with the reasoning of logic takka. On the basis of a single passage, quoted out of context, the Buddha has been made out to be a pragmatic empiricist who dismisses all doctrine ,alama faith, and whose Dhamma is simply a freethinker’s kit to truth which invites each one to accept and reject whatever he likes.

An evening with bats December 28, We are not to simply accept a surmise, something accepted sutra true while as yet unproven. Wholistic Health See all. He gave ten basic conditions to beware of in order to avoid becoming the intellectual slave of anyone, even of the Buddha himself. This is an extract from his message to the people of Thailand suta It is a gift for everyone in the world. An evening with hedgehogs December 21, This is how to live: When listening to anything, one should give it careful attention and full scrutiny.