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Mv I 37
PTS: Mv I 50 | CS: vin.mv.01.37
The Case of Plague[1]
Ven. Khematto Bhikkhu
Alternate translations/layout: 'line by line' Pāḷi - English

(Mv.I.50.1) [112] Now on that occasion a certain family had died of cholera. Only the father and little son were left. Having gone forth among the monks, they went together for alms. Then the boy, as his father was being offered alms, ran up to him and said, “Give some to me, too, daddy! Give some to me, too, daddy!”

People criticized and complained and spread it about,

“These Sakyan-son contemplatives are uncelibate. This boy was born by a bhikkhunī.”

The monks heard the people criticizing and complaining and spreading it about. Then the monks reported the matter to the Blessed One.

“Monks, a boy less than 15 years old should not be given the Going-forth. Whoever should give it: an offense of wrong doing.”

(Mv.I.51.1) [113] Now at that time a family who were supporters of Ven. Ānanda — having conviction and confidence — died of cholera. Two boys were left. Following their old habits, on seeing monks they ran up to them. The monks drove them away. Being driven away by the monks, they cried. Then the thought occurred to Ven. Ānanda, “It has been laid down by the Blessed One that, ‘A boy less than 15 years old should not be given the Going-forth.’

“‘And these boys are less than 15 years old. By what strategy could these boys not come to ruin?’”

So Ven. Ānanda reported the matter to the Blessed One.

“Ānanda, are these boys able to chase away crows?”

“They are able, O Blessed One.”

Then the Blessed One, having given a Dhamma talk with regard to this cause, to this incident, addressed the monks:

“Monks, I allow that a boy less than 15 years old be given the Going-forth if he is capable of chasing away crows.”

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