Translating Classical Buddhism to Modern English

The Numerical Discourses

Chapter 14: Five Precepts

5. Wrong Sex

1. Thus I have heard: One time, the Buddha was staying at Anāthapiṇḍada’s Park in Jeta’s Grove of Śrāvastī.

2. It was then that the Bhagavān addressed the monks, “I don’t see anything in this assembly like one thing that when cultivated and cultivated often accomplishes the actions of Hell, actions of hungry ghosts, and actions of animals. If they were born among humans, a person will be made to live in a household where adultery is practiced, that lacks pure living. People will gossip and constantly slander them. What is that one thing? It’s wrong sex.

3. The Buddha told the monks, “If a person is wanton without limit and likes violating others’ wives, they will readily fall into Hell, among hungry ghosts, or among animals. If they are born among humans, there will be debauchery in their household …

4. “Therefore, monks, one should always be right minded. Don’t produce notions of lust, and take care not to have such relations with others. Thus, monks, you should train yourselves.”

5. When the monks heard what the Buddha taught, they rejoiced and approved.

Translator: Charles Patton

Last Revised: 31 July 2023