Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 03/22/2020

Not in Accord with Dhamma


Preoccupied as I have been with the theme of pestilence and plague, I went in search of Stoic and Buddhist quotes on the same. As it turns out, I found neither (beyond the obvious Ratana Sutta text which I chant daily). Instead I found a quote by Hippocrates that resonated with me:

“Illnesses do not come upon us out of the blue. They are developed from small daily sins against Nature. When enough sins have accumulated, illnesses will suddenly appear.”

The Greeks and Early Buddhists seem to share an understanding of the cosmos that is often obscured by translations and 2000 years of Christian hermeneutics. If you read Nature as Dhamma and sins as akusala kamma the passage above makes a lot of sense in light of the Teachings.

When we commit akusala kamma we till the field for the ripening of sickness, death and tragedy. That’s why our best protection as putthujana is to adhere to the Precepts. In a wider sense, it seems to me that that pandemics, pestilence and the like may arise as a result of a lack of of virtue and generosity. In other words, we have lost our way and COVID-19 is the result.


  1. Sadhu, dear Dhamma brother, i.m not exactly sure where it was mentioned..maybe in one of the commentaries…but it seems there was a significant change to much more sickness es and disease if human started to use animals as food…started to kill them to satisfy own desire..
    But definitely it was mentioned in DN that there had been times with long lifes and very few physical problems.

    And the ancient Kuru Country was exceptional in keeping precepts..maybe no coinsidence that the Satipathana Sutta was thought there.

    Best wishes to you and family from Sri Lanka

    • Sadhu! Sadhu! Sadhu! Thank you Ayya. I will look for the Sutta or commentary. Wishing you every good blessing.



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