How To Sleep Well Like The Buddha

To always rest well,
always live well when awake,
without greed, hatred and delusion.

– Shilashanti

According to the Hatthaka Sutta, the Buddha was staying in a forest near Alavi, on a spread of leaves. Hatthaka, while walking around for exercise, saw him, prostrated and expressed his wish that the Buddha had slept in ease, to which he replied, ‘I have slept in ease. Of those in the world who sleep in ease, I am one.’ Hatthaka remarked however, that the winter night was cold, the ground hard, with the leaves and his robes being thin.

The Buddha asked if he thinks a householder(‘s son) with the following will sleep in ease… in a well-sheltered house, with luxurious bedding and many charming wives. Hatthaka replied that he would. The Buddha then asked if the same person might have fevers of body and mind born of passion (i.e. attachment), aversion and delusion (i.e. the Three Poisons), such that he sleeps miserably. Hatthaka agreed that it is possible. (As such, ease of body arises from peace of mind.)

The Buddha replied that as the roots of these poisons had been abandoned by him, like a stump without conditions for further growth, he always sleeps [and wakes] in ease. He is totally unbound (i.e. liberated), neither craving for, nor clinging to sense pleasures, having subdued fear, and is with peaceful awareness. (Such is the blissful rest of the morally upright, spiritually pure, free and awakened, which is absent for those with the opposite qualities.) 

To always awake well,
always rest well when sleeping,
without greed, hatred and delusion.

– Shilashanti

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