The Eight Garudhammas - English Translation

English Translation

The English translation of the Eight Garudhammas is reproduced below:. The Garudhammas and some research are as follows:

1) A nun who has been ordained even for a hundred years must greet respectfully, rise up from her seat, salute with joined palms, do proper homage to a monk ordained but that day.
Murcott writes about Pajapati's purported later request: "I would ask one thing of the Blessed One, Ananda. It would be good if the Blessed One would allow making salutations, standing up in the presence of another, paying reverence and the proper performance of duties, to take place equally between both bhikkhus and bhikkhunis according to seniority." Those who believe in the garudhamma] also recount the story of this rule being altered after six monks lifted up their robes to show their thighs to the nuns. They believe that the Buddha learned about this, and made an exception to that rule so that nuns need not pay respect to such monks. According to the altered rule, a bhikkhuni does not have to bow to every monk, only to a monk who is worthy of respect.
2) A nun must not spend the rains in a residence where there are no monks.
3) Every half month a nun should desire two things from the Order of Monks: the asking as to the date of the Observance day, and the coming for the exhortation .
4) After the rains (3-months rainy season retreat) a nun must 'invite' before both orders in respect of three matters, namely what was seen, what was heard, what was suspected.
However, even proponents of the garudhammas concede that amendments were made to these rules. The revised version allows bhikkhunis to perform Paravana by themselves.
5) A nun, offending against an important rule, must undergo manatta discipline for half a month before both orders. Thanissaro Bhikkhu's translation varies: "5) A bhikkhuni who has broken any of the vows of respect must undergo penance for half a month under both Sanghas."
6) When, as a probationer, she has trained in the six rules for two years, she should seek higher ordination from both orders.
This gurudhamma #6 mentions probationers/sikkhamanas (modern equivalent is Samaneri) who train for two years in preparation to become bhikkhunis. It says that after a probationer has trained with a bhikkhuni for two years, that bhikkhuni preceptor has the responsibility to fully ordain her. However, when the Buddha ordained Mahapajapati, probationer ordination did not exist. He ordained her directly as a bhikkhuni. This is one of the many textual errors in the garudhammas: the Buddha supposedly created one rule that requires probationer training which did not exist in the Buddha's time.
7) A monk must not be abused or reviled in any way by a nun.
8) From today, admonition of monks by nuns is forbidden.
Some scholars believe that the eight rules were added later since:
1) there is a discrepancy between the Pali bhikkhuni Vinaya and the garudhammas
2) violation of the Payantika Dharmas is treated as a minor offense (requiring only confession as expiation) but a severe offense in the garudhammas.
In Young Chung writes about Hae-ju Chun, a Bhikṣunī and assistant professor at Tongguk University in Seoul, Korea, who points out that six of the Eight Rules (#1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8) belong to the Bhikṣunī Pāyantika Dharmas, yet require different punishments in garudhammas versus the pāyantika dharmas. Violation of any garudhamma is punished by prohibiting the probationer from ordaining. However, the pāyantika dharmas (#175, 145, 124 or 126, 141, 143, 142) are minor rules, requiring only confession. The first of them does not even appear in the Pāli Bhikṣunī Vinaya. Based on the vast difference in the gravity of offenses between the eight garudhammas and the pāyantika dharmas, she asserts the probability that the garudhammas might have been added later.

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