Five personal advantages

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The five personal advantages (Tib. རང་འབྱོར་ལྔ་, rang jor nga, Wyl. rang 'byor lnga), half of the ten advantages of a precious human birth, are:

  1. being a human being
  2. born in a central land
  3. with faculties intact
  4. lifestyle not harmful or wrong
  5. with faith in the three pitakas
  • 1. There are two analogies that the Buddha gives to illustrate the difficulty of obtaining a human birth, and they are the improbability of a blind turtle putting its head through a yoke tossed about on the waves of a vast ocean, and the improbability of a mustard seed passing through the eye of an upright-standing needle when a handful of seeds are tossed at it. Both analogies are widely known as illustrations of the rarity of obtaining a human birth and are mentioned in The Sutra of Nanda’s Going Forth (Toh 328).[1]

Commentary

Chökyi Drakpa says:

Being born as a human being means that you have a proper physical support for practising the Dharma. Having all five faculties intact means you can study the teachings and contemplate them. In a central land means to be born in a place where the teachings are available. A lifestyle that is not harmful or wrong means that your body, speech and mind are in harmony with the Dharma. Having faith in Buddha’s teachings means recognizing that they provide a special path leading to freedom from samsara, and a state which surpasses the situation of the worldly gods. When you possess these five endowments, 'the five personal advantages' are said to be complete.

References

  1. 84000 Translating the Words of the Buddha.

Alternative Translations

  • Five individual advantages (Padmakara Translation Group)

Further Reading

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