Protect your devoteeship

Protect your devoteeship
There are four types of people in the Lord Buddha's religious order. Those are Bhikkhu (male and female) and devotees (male and female). Among those, devotees have to fulfil various acts to keep the devoteeship safe. Lord Buddha has discoursed seven facts which cause to loss the devoteeship. To keep the devoteeship safe, it is very important to understand those seven facts.

First cause is unliking of associate with Bhikkhus. Association with Bhikkhus makes a very good mannered person. Those who are able to understand the shame and fear. It makes a person with humanity. They wish the refuge of triple gem. The devotion, virtue, knowledge of Dhamma, charity and brainity should be inside of a devotee. Association with Bhikkhus helps to improve those features.

The second one is not going quickly for meritable deals. This is also called the laziness. They also do not like to listen to Dhamma. A devotee who has taken refuge of triple gem should have to memorize the dangerous of the cycle of rebirth frequently. Therefore for the sake of the comfort of this and next lives, devotee has to do meritable practices very quickly. 

The third one is loosing the discipline on the high virtue and not working for improving self virtue. A devotee must every time try to be better than the present. Try to make more virtue on next year than the previous year. A person who protecting five precepts must try to protect eight precepts. A person who protecting eight precepts must try to protect ten precepts. When the virtue growing with the time you have to act to abandon the faults and no-good inside. Otherwise he will fail to protect the devoteeship.

Forth one is displeasure at all young and old Bhikkhus. A devotee never make a displeasure at any kind of Bhikkhu. There may be some Bhikkhus who are doing wrong things. But a good devotee will not make a displeasure at them. It is good to kindly show the correct path to them if you are able. If you can show them the wrong with honest mind, the Bhikkhu will never make a disinclination. Devotees without displeasure are assets to the religious order. Some people make displeasure at the Bhikkhus and do a lot of harm to the religious order and even to them also.

Fifth one is listening Dhamma with an intention of searching errors. A good devotee always listen to Dhamma to improve their knowledge. If a person who listen to Dhamma to search errors he is not a devotee. Never comment without learning Dhamma very well. Some people proud themselves with small knowledge caught from here and there and try to appear as a good knowledge person. Never do those who are willing to protect the devoteeship.

Sixth point is searching extra people or things to offering other than the Lord Buddha. They keep the Lord Buddha at the second place and go after other fabulous things. They also try to give those to other people. This is not a characteristic of a devotee.

The seventh factor is chasing after the fabulous things and work hard for those. They use their assets for those fabulous things. How unfortunate to misunderstand the doctrine of Lord Buddha? Those who chasing after such things will lose the comfort of this life and also the next lives.

Thinking about all those things and remember frequently to be a good devotee.

Translate from a sermon of Ven. Batugoda Sankicchayana Chief Thero
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