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Chapter 26

Bràhmaõa Vagga 1
The Bràhmaõa
(Text and Translation by Ven. Nàrada)

 

1. Chinda sota§ parakkamma Þ
            kàme panuda bràhmaõa
Saïkhàràna§ khaya§ ¤atvà Þ
            akata¤¤å' si bràhmaõa. 383.

BE A KNOWER OF THE UNCREATED

1. Strive and cleave the stream. 2 Discard, O bràhmaõa, sense-desires. Knowing the destruction of conditioned things, be, O bràhmaõa, a knower of the Unmade 3 (Nibbàna). 383.

Story

    A devotee, persuaded by his great faith, used to give alms in his house to the monks addressing them, "O Arahants". The monks in their modesty resented his form of address and discontinued their visits to his house. The devotee was sad and he went to the Buddha to inquire why the monks had ceased to accept his alms. The monks explained the matter. The Buddha said that the devotee had used that form of address only out of respect and that they should try to become Arahants by cleaving the stream of craving.


 

2. Yadà dvayesu dhammesu Þ
            pàragå hoti bràhmaõo
Atha' ssa sabbe sa§yogà Þ
            attha§ gacchanti jànato. 384.

CULTIVATE CONCENTRATION AND INSIGHT

2. When in two states 4 a bràhmaõa goes to the Farther Shore, 5 then all the fetters of that "one who knows" pass away. 384.

Story

    Knowing that some monks who had come to visit the Buddha from very far away were ripe to realize Nibbàna, the Venerable Sàriputta approached the Buddha, and questioned Him about the two states which the Buddha always used to commend. In reply the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

3. Yassa pàra§ apàra§ và Þ
            pàràpàra§ na vijjati
Vãtaddara§ visa§yutta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 385.

THE UNBOUND PERSON IS A BRâHMAöA

3. For whom there exists neither the hither 6 nor the farther shore, nor both the hither and the farther shore, 7 he who is undistressed and unbound, 8 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 385.

Story

    Màra, disguised as a man, approached the Buddha and questioned Him about the farther shore. The Buddha, recognising him, dismissed him saying that he had nothing to do with the farther shore and uttered this verse.


 

4. Jhàyi§ virajam àsãna§ Þ
            katakicca§ anàsava§
Uttamattha§ anuppatta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 386.

HE WHO IS MEDITATIVE AND PURE IS A BRâHMAöA

4. He who is meditative, 9 stainless and secluded, 10 he who has done his duty and is free from corruptions, 11 he who has attained the Highest Goal 12 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 386.

Story

    A brahmin noted that the Buddha used to address His monks as "bràhmaõa", and he thought that he too was entitled to the same form of address as he was a brahmin by birth. He questioned the Buddha about the matter. The Buddha replied that one did not become a bràhmaõa by birth but by attaining his highest goal.


 

5. Divà tapati àdicco Þ
            ratti§ obhàti candimà
Sannaddho khattiyo tapati Þ
            jhàyã tapati bràhmaõo
Atha sabbam ahoratti§ Þ
            buddho tapati tejasà. 387.

THE BUDDHA SHINES THROUGHOUT DAY AND NIGHT

5. The sun shines by day; the moon is radiant by night. Armoured shines the warrior king. 13 Meditating the bràhmaõa 14 shines. But all day and night the Buddha 15 shines in glory. 387.

Story

    The Venerable Ananda perceived a king in all his glory, a meditative monk seated in the hall, and the setting sun and the rising moon. Then he beheld the Buddha outshining them all in glory. When he mentioned his impressions of the different sights to the Buddha He uttered this verse.


 

6. Bàhitapàpo'ti bràhmaõo Þ
            samacariyà samaõo' ti vuccati
Pabbàjay' attano mala§ Þ
            tasmà pabbajito' ti vuccati. 388.

HE IS HOLY WHO HAS DISCARDED ALL EVIL

6. Because he has discarded evil, he is called a bràhmaõa; because he lives in peace, 16 he is called a samana; because he gives up the impurities, he is called a pabbajita - recluse. 388.

Story

    An ascetic of an alien sect approached the Buddha and requested Him to address Him as "pabbajita" - recluse. In reply the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

7. Na bràhmaõassa pahareyya Þ
            n' ƒssa mu¤cetha bràhmaõo
Dhã bràhmaõassa hantàra§ Þ
            tato dhã yassa mu¤cati. 389.
8. Na bràhmaõass' etadaki¤ci seyyo Þ
            yadà nisedho manaso piyehi
Yato yato hi§samano nivattati Þ
            tato tato sammatimeva dukkha§. 390.

HARM NOT AN ARAHANT

7. One should not strike a bràhmaõa, 17 nor should a bràhmaõa vent (his wrath) on one who has struck him. Shame on him who strikes a bràhmaõa! More shame on him who gives vent (to his wrath)! 389.

AN ARAHANT DOES NOT RETALIATE

8. Unto a bràhmaõa that (non-retaliation) is of no small advantage. When the mind is weaned from things dear, whenever the intent to harm ceases, then and then only doth sorrow subside. 390.

Story

    Once a certain brahmin struck the Venerable Sàriputta to test his patience. The latter did not get angry. Instead of retaliating, he pardoned him and also ate food in his house. Praising the Venerable Sàriputta for his outstanding patience, the Buddha explained the attitude of a real bràhmaõa (Arahant).


 

9. Yassa kàyena vàcàya Þ
            manasà natthi dukkata§
Sa§vuta§ tãhi ñhànehi Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 391.

HE IS A TRUE BRâHMAöA WHO IS WELL-RESTRAINED

9. He that does no evil through body, speech or mind, who is restrained in these three respects - him I call a bràhmaõa. 391.

Story

    Some nuns would not observe the vinaya ceremonies with the Venerable Mahà Pajàpati Gotami since they doubted her authenticity as a bhikkhunã (nun). The Buddha explained matters and remarked that no doubts should be entertained with regard to a Passionless One who is restrained in the three doors (i.e., body, speech and mind).


 

10. Yamhà dhamma§ vijàneyya Þ
            sammàsambuddhadesita§
Sakkacca§ ta§ namasseyya Þ
            aggihutta§'va bràhmaõo. 392.

HONOUR TO WHOM HONOUR IS DUE

10. If from anybody one should understand the doctrine preached by the Fully Enlightened One, devoutly should one reverence him, as a brahmin reveres the sacrificial fire. 392.

Story

    The Venerable Sàriputta, in reverencing his first teacher, the Venerable Assaji, from whom he had learnt the Dhamma, used to turn in the direction of Assaji's abode. Some monks misconstrued his action and reported to the Buddha that Sàriputta was reverencing the cardinal points. 18 The Buddha defended him and explained the attitude of a pupil towards his teacher.


 

11. Na jañàhi na gottena Þ
            na jaccà hoti bràhmaõo
Yamhi sacca¤ ca dhammo ca Þ
            so sucã so ca bràhmaõo. 393.

PURE IS HE WHO IS TRUTHFUL AND RIGHTEOUS

11. Not by matted hair, nor by family, nor by birth does one become a bràhmaõa. But in whom there exist both truth 19 and righteousness, 20 pure is he, a bràhmaõa is he. 393.

Story

    A brahmin by birth approached the Buddha and requested Him to address him as "bràhmaõa" just as the monks were addressed. Thereupon the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

12. Ki§ te jañàhi dummedha Þ
            ki§ te ajinasàñiyà
Abbhantara§ te gahaõa§ Þ
            bàhira§ parimajjasi. 394.

BE PURE WITHIN

12. What is the use of your matted hair, O witless man? What is the use of your antelope skin garment? Within, you are full of passions; without, you embellish yourself. 21 394.

Story

    The Buddha uttered this verse in connection with an ascetic who attempted to kill a lizard.


 

13. Pa§sukåladhara§ jantu§ Þ
            kisa§ dhamanisanthata§
Eka§ vanasmi§ jhàyanta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 395.

WHO MEDITATES ALONE IN THE FOREST IS A BRâHMAöA

13. The person who wears dust-heap robes, 22 who is lean, whose veins stand out, who meditates alone in the forest - him I call a bràhmaõa. 395.

Story

    The Venerable Kisà Gotamã, who was meditating alone in the forest, wearing dust-heap robes, came through the air to salute the Buddha. Seeing Sakka, King of the gods, she turned back after saluting. Sakka wished to know who she was. The Buddha uttered this verse in reply.


 

14. Na c'ƒha§ bràhmaõa§ bråmi Þ
            yonija§ mattisambhava§
Bhovàdi nàma so hoti Þ
            sa ce hoti saki¤cano
Aki¤cana§ anàdàna§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 396.

THE NON-POSSESSIVE AND THE NON-ATTACHED PERSON IS A BRâHMAöA

14. I do not call him a bràhmaõa merely because he is born of a (brahmin) womb or sprung from a (brahmin) mother. He is merely a "Dear-addresser", 23 if he be with impediments. He who is free from impediments, free from clinging - him I call a bràhmaõa. 396.

Story

    A brahmin by birth wished the Buddha to address him as "bràhmaõa". The Buddha uttered this verse in reply.


15. Sabbasa¤¤ojana§ chetvà Þ
            yo ve na paritassati
Saïgàtiga§ visa§yutta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 397.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS DESTROYED ALL FETTERS

15. He who has cut off all fetters, who trembles not, who has gone beyond ties, who is unbound - him I call a bràhmaõa. 397.

Story

    The Buddha uttered this verse when the monks reported to the Buddha that the Venerable Uggasena, an Arahant, claimed that he had no fear.


 

16. Chetvà naddhi§ varatta¤ ca Þ
            sandàma§ sahanukkama§
Ukkhittapaëigha§ buddha§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 398.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS NO HATRED

16. He who has cut the strap (hatred), the thong (craving), and the rope (heresies), together with the appendages (latent tendencies), who has thrown up the cross-bar (ignorance), who is enlightened 24 (Buddha) - him I call a bràhmaõa. 398.

Story

    Two persons arguing about the comparative strength of their oxen tested them by loading their carts with sand and forcing the oxen to draw them. The carts would not stir an inch but instead the thongs and straps broke. The monks saw this and mentioned it to the Buddha. Thereupon He advised the monks to destroy the thongs and straps in their own minds.


 

17. Akkosa§ vadhabandha¤ ca Þ
            aduññho yo titikkhati
Khantibala§ balàõãka§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 399.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS PATIENT

17. He who, without anger, endures reproach, flogging and punishments, whose power and potent army is patience - him I call a bràhmaõa. 399.

Story

    A certain wife used to ejaculate words of praise to the Buddha whenever the slightest mishap occurred. Her husband objected to her habit but she persisted. The provoked husband went to the Buddha and angrily put some questions to the Buddha. Hearing His reply, which was marked by great patience, the irate husband became a convert and entered the Order. His brothers came and abused the Buddha for converting him. The Buddha patiently endured their reproach and preached to them. They were also converted. When the monks extolled His patience the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

18. Akkodhana§ vatavanta§ Þ
            sãlavanta§ anussuta§
Danta§ antimasàrãra§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 400.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS NOT WRATHFUL

18. He who is not wrathful, but is dutiful, 25 virtuous, free from craving, self-controlled and bears his final body, 26 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 400.

Story

    The Venerable Sàriputta was reviled by his own mother as she resented his taking of the monastic life, but he was patient. Hearing of his patience, the Buddha uttered this verse in praise of him.


 

19. Vàripokkharapatt' eva Þ
            àragger' iva sàsapo
Yo na limpati kàmesu Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 401.

HE IS A BRâHMAöA WHO CLINGS NOT TO SENSUAL PLEASURES

19. Like water on a lotus leaf, like a mustard seed on the point of a needle, he who clings not to sensual pleasures - him I call a bràhmaõa. 401.

Story

    When an Arahant bhikkhunã was raped by a former suitor of hers the monks began wondering whether Arahants are susceptible to sensual pleasures. The Buddha explained that Arahants are not so susceptible.


 

20. Yo dukkhassa pajànàti Þ
            idh' eva khayam attano
Pannabhàra§ visa§yutta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 402.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS LAID THE BURDEN ASIDE

20. He who realizes here in this world the destruction of his sorrow, who has laid the burden 27 aside and is emancipated, 28 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 402.

Story

    Before the promulgation of the rule with regard to the ordination of slaves, a slave belonging to a brahmin ran away and entered the Order. Soon he attained Arahantship. The brahmin, seeing him when he went in quest of alms, held him by the hem of his robe. The Buddha remarked that the slave had laid the burden aside and uttered this verse.


 

21. Gambhãrapa¤¤a§ medhàvi§ Þ
            maggƒmaggassa kovida§
Uttamattha§ anuppatta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 403.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS REACHED HIS ULTIMATE GOAL

21. He whose knowledge is deep, who is wise, who is skilled in the right and wrong way, 29 who has reached the highest goal - him I call a bràhmaõa. 403.

Story

    The Venerable Khemà bhikkhunã came to pay her respects to the Buddha and seeing Sakka King of the gods, saluted the Buddha and turned back. Sakka inquired of the Buddha who she was. The Buddha answered that she was a daughter of His who was very wise.


 

22. Asa§saññha§ gahaññhehi Þ
            anàgàrehi c'åbhaya§
Anokasàri§ appiccha§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 404.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS NO INTIMACY WITH ANY

22. He who is not intimate either with householders or with the homeless ones, who wanders without an abode, who is without desires - him I call a bràhmaõa. 404.

Story

    Once a monk was dwelling in a cave. A goddess, who had her abode in the cave, made a false accusation against him in order to drive him away. The monk was not angered; on the contrary her words induced him to attain Arahantship. Later, he went to see the Buddha and mentioned the whole incident. The Buddha thereupon uttered this verse.


 

23. Nidhàya daõóa§ bhåtesu Þ
            tasesu thàvaresu ca
Yo na hanti na ghàteti Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 405.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS ABSOLUTELY HARMLESS

23. He who has laid aside the cudgel in his dealings with beings, 30 whether feeble or strong, who neither harms nor kills - him I call a bràhmaõa. 405.

Story

    A monk, who had attained Arahantship while dwelling in a forest, was on his way to see the Buddha. A woman who had quarrelled with her husband entered the same forest desiring to return to her parents' home. The husband, finding his wife missing, entered the forest in search of her. He saw the woman following the Arahant. The husband, suspecting the Arahant, beat him soundly in spite of the pleadings of his wife, who vouched for his innocence. Later, the Arahant saw the Buddha and mentioned the whole incident. Thereupon the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

24. Aviruddha§ viruddhesu Þ
            attadaõóesu nibbuta§
Sàdànesu anàdàna§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 406.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS FRIENDLY AMONGST THE HOSTILE

24. He who is friendly amongst the hostile, who is peaceful amongst the violent, who is unattached amongst the attached, 31 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 406.

Story

    A female devotee expressed her desire to offer food at her house to five monks. Accordingly five Arahant novices went to her house for alms as invited. But as she desired to have five elderly bràhmaõas (monks), she did not offer alms to the novices. Later she was convinced of their greatness, for although they were not served first they were not angry. The Buddha, hearing their story, uttered this verse.


 

25. Yassa ràgo ca doso ca Þ
            màno makkho ca pàtito
Sàsapor' iva àraggà Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 407.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS DISCARDED ALL PASSIONS

25. In whom lust, hatred, pride, detraction are fallen off like a mustard seed from the point of a needle - him I call a bràhmaõa. 407.

Story

    An Arahant advised his brother monk to leave the Order as he could not memorise a single verse even after four months. The monks thought that the Arahant had done so in anger. The Buddha explained that Arahants have no passions and that the Arahant concerned had been actuated by reverence for the Dhamma. 32


 

26. Akakkasa§ vi¤¤àpani§ Þ
            gira§ sacca§ udãraye
Yàya n' ƒbhisaje ka¤ci Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 408.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO GIVES OFFENCE TO NONE

26. He who utters gentle, instructive, true words, who by his speech gives offence to none - him I call a bràhmaõa. 408.

Story

    An Arahant was in the habit of addressing others with an epithet employed only in addressing outcastes. The monks took objection to his form of address and mentioned it to the Buddha. Thereupon the Buddha explained that the Arahant had not done so with evil intent but through force of habit from past lives, and on that occasion He uttered this verse.


 

27. Yo'dha dãgha§ va rassa§ và Þ
            aõu§ thåla§ subhƒsubha§
Loke adinna§ nƒdiyati Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 409.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO STEALS NOT

27. He who in this world takes nothing that is not given, be it long or short, small or great, fair or foul - him I call a bràhmaõa. 409.

Story

    An Arahant mistaking a cloth lying on the ground for one abandoned by the owner, took it. The owner saw it and accused him of theft. The Arahant explained that he had not taken it with thievish intent and returned it. He told the other monks about the incident. The monks made fun of him. The Buddha explained that Arahants do not steal anything from others.


 

28. âsà yassa na vijjanti Þ
            asmi§ loke paramhi ca
Niràsaya§ visa§yutta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 410.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS DESIRELESS

28. He who has no longings, pertaining to this world or to the next, who is desireless and emancipated - him I call a bràhmaõa. 410.

Story

    The Venerable Sàriputta, at the termination of a rainy season which he had spent in a certain place with many other monks, advised them to bring the robes presented to the young monks and novices and went to see the Buddha. The monks, misconstruing his words, thought that he still harboured desires. The Buddha explained the attitude of the Venerable Sàriputta.


 

29. Yassƒlayà na vijjanti Þ
            a¤¤àya akatha§kathã
Amatogadha§ anuppatta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 411.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS NO LONGINGS

29. He who has no longings, who, through knowledge, is free from doubts, who has gained a firm footing in the Deathless (Nibbàna) - him I call a bràhmaõa. 411.

Story

    The story is similar to the preceding one. This time the accusation was made against the Venerable Moggallàna.


 

30. Yo'dha pu¤¤a¤ ca pàpa¤ ca Þ
            ubho saïga§ upaccagà
Asoka§ viraja§ suddha§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 412.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS TRANSCENDED GOOD AND EVIL

30. Herein he who has transcended both good and bad and the ties 33 as well, who is sorrowless, stainless, and pure - him I call a bràhmaõa. 412.

Story

    When the monks spoke in admiration of the great merit of the Venerable Revata the Buddha mentioned that he was beyond both good and evil.


 

31. Canda§' va vimala§ suddha§ Þ
            vippasannam anàvila§
Nandãbhavaparikkhãõa§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 413.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS PURE

31. He who is spotless as the moon, who is pure, serene, and unperturbed, 34 who has destroyed craving for becoming - him I call a bràhmaõa. 413.

Story

    Owing to a meritorious act in a past birth a person possessed a light like unto the moon's disc, issuing from his navel. When he came to the presence of the Buddha it disappeared. He wished to know from the Buddha the cause of its disappearance. The Buddha promised to answer if he would enter the Order. Later, he became a monk and attained Arahantship. Thereupon the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

32. Yo ima§ paëipatha§ dugga§ Þ
            sa§sàra§ moham accagà
Tiõõo pàragato jhàyã Þ
            anejo akatha§kathã
Anupàdàya nibbuto Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 414.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO CLINGS TO NAUGHT

32. He who has passed beyond this quagmire, 35 this difficult path, 36 the ocean of life (sa§sàra), and delusion, 37 who has crossed 38 and gone beyond, who is meditative, free from craving and doubts, who, clinging to naught, has attained Nibbàna - him I call a bràhmaõa. 414.

Story

    This verse was uttered by the Buddha in connection with Arahant Sãvalã, who had to suffer long in the mother's womb.


 

33. Yo' dha kàme pahatvàna Þ
            anàgàro paribbaje
Kàmabhavaparikkhãõa§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 415.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS GIVEN UP SENSE-DESIRES

33. He who in this world giving up sense-desires, would renounce worldly life and become a homeless one, he who has destroyed sense-desires and becoming - him I call a bràhmaõa. 415.

Story

    A courtesan tried to tempt a young monk who belonged to a wealthy family but failed. Praising him, the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

34. Yo' dha taõha§ pahatvàna Þ
            anàgàro paribbaje
Taõhàbhavaparikkhãõa§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 416.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS GIVEN UP CRAVING

34. He who in this world giving up craving, would renounce worldly life and become a homeless one, he who has destroyed craving and becoming - him I call a bràhmaõa. 416.

Story

    A wealthy man retired from the world and attained Arahantship. The Buddha uttered this verse to show that the man no longer had any longing for wealth or wife.


 

35. Hitvà mànusaka§ yoga§ Þ
            dibba§ yoga§ upaccagà
Sabbayogavisa§yutta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 417.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS DISCARDED ALL BONDS

35. He who, discarding human ties and transcending celestial ties, is completely delivered from all ties - him I call a bràhmaõa. 417.

Story

    A monk, who had once been a dancer, said, when questioned by the other monks, that he had no more longing for dancing. Commenting on his change of life and his attainment to Arahantship, the Buddha uttered this verse.


 

36. Hitvà rati¤ ca arati¤ ca Þ
            sãtibhåta§ niråpadhi§
Sabbalokàbhibhu§ vãra§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 418.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS GIVEN UP LIKES AND DISLIKES

36. He who has given up likes 39 and dislikes, 40 who is cooled and is without defilements, 41 who has conquered the world 42 and is strenuous - him I call a bràhmaõa. 418.

Story

    The story is similar to the preceding one.


 

37. Cuti§ yo vedi sattàna§ Þ
            upapatti¤ ca sabbaso
Asatta§ sugata§ buddha§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 419.
38. Yassa gati§ na jànanti Þ
            devà gandhabbamànusà
Khãõàsava§ arahanta§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 420.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS NOT ATTACHED

37. He who in every way knows the death and rebirth of beings, who is non-attached, well-gone, 43 and enlightened, 44 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 419.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS AN ARAHANT

38. He whose destiny neither gods nor gandhabbas 45 nor men know, who has destroyed all corruptions, and is far removed from passions (Arahant) - him I call a bràhmaõa. 420.

Story

    A man, named Vangãsa, was able to divine where a dead person had been reborn by tapping at the skull of the dead. Once he came to the Buddha and succeeded in divining the place and state of rebirth of several but failed in the case of an Arahant. He wished to know from the Buddha by what charm he would be able to tell the destiny of such persons. The Buddha replied that He would teach him the charm if he would enter the Order. With the object of learning the charm he became a monk. But before long he attained Arahantship. With reference to him the Buddha uttered these verses.


 

39. Yassa pure ca pacchà ca Þ
            majjhe ca natthi ki¤cana§
Aki¤cana§ anàdàna§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 421.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO YEARNS FOR NAUGHT

39. He who has no clinging to Aggregates that are past, future, or present, who is without clinging and grasping - him I call a bràhmaõa. 421.

Story

    A very devout young wife, with the permission of her husband (who had attained Anàgàmi, the third stage of Sainthood), became a nun and attained Arahantship. One day the husband approached her and put some difficult questions on the Dhamma with the object of testing her. She answered all the questions. When she was questioned on points beyond her scope she referred her husband to the Buddha. Hearing the answers given by the nun, the Buddha applauded her and uttered this verse.


 

40. Usabha§ pavara§ vãra§ Þ
            mahesi§ vijitàvina§
Aneja§ nahàtaka§ Buddha§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 422.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO IS ENLIGHTENED

40. The fearless, 46 the noble, the hero, the great sage, 47 the conqueror, 48 the desireless, the cleanser 49 (of defilements), the enlightened, 50 - him I call a bràhmaõa. 422.

Story

    This verse was uttered by the Buddha in connection with the fearlessness of the Venerable Angulimàla.


 

41. Pubbenivàsa§ yo vedã Þ
            saggƒpàya¤ ca passati
Atho jàtikkhaya§ patto Þ
            abhi¤¤àvosito muni
Sabbavositavosàna§ Þ
            tam aha§ bråmi bràhmaõa§. 423.

A BRâHMAöA IS HE WHO HAS PERFECTED HIMSELF

41. That sage who knows his former abodes, who sees the blissful 51 and the woeful states, 52 who has reached the end of births, 53 who, with superior wisdom, has perfected himself, 54 who has completed 55 (the holy life), and reached the end of all passions - him I call a bràhmaõa. 423.

Story

    Once the Buddha was suffering from a rheumatic pain. A devotee prepared for Him some hot water for a bath. When the Buddha was cured of the pain he came to the Buddha and wished to know to what kind of person a gift should be given if it is to yield abundant fruit. In reply the Buddha uttered this verse.

THE END


End Notes

1 Though a racial term here it is applied either to a Buddha or an Arahant - to one who has completed the Way and has won Enlightenment.

2 Sota§ - stream of craving.

3 Nibbàna is not made of anything. It is unconditioned.

4 Concentration (samatha) and Insight (vipassanà).

5 That is, in acquiring higher intellect (abhi¤¤à).

6 Pàra§ - the six personal sense-fields; apàra§ - the six external sense-fields.

7 Not grasping anything as "me" and "mine".

8 Not connected with the passions.

9 He who practises concentration (samatha) and insight (vipassanà).

10 âsãna§, living alone in the forest.

11 By realizing the four Truths and eradicating the fetters.

12 That is, Nibbàna.

13 Here Khattiya refers to a king.

14 That is, an Arahant.

15 The Buddha eclipses immorality by the power of morality (sãla), vice by the power of virtue (guõa), ignorance by the power of wisdom (pa¤¤à), demerit by the power of merit (pu¤¤a), unrighteousness by the power of righteousness (dhamma). (Commentary).

16 Having subdued all evil.

17 Here bràhmaõa is used in the sense of an Arahant.

18 The adherents of certain cults worshipped the four cardinal points, the zenith and the nadir, e.g., Sigàla (of the Sigàlovàda Sutta).

19 The realization of the four Noble Truths.

20 Here Dhamma refers to the nine supramundane States - the four Paths, the four Fruits, and Nibbàna.

21 With the paraphernalia of the ascetics.

22 Robes made of cast-off rags.

23 Bho is a familiar form of address which even the Buddha used in addressing laymen. The term Bho-vàdi is applied to the Buddha as well.

24 Who has understood the four Noble Truths.

25 Devoted to religious austerity.

26 "Final body" because he, having destroyed the passions, would be reborn no more.

27 The burden of the Aggregates.

28 From all defilements.

29 Who knows the way to the woeful states, to the blissful states, and to Nibbàna.

30 Literally, towards beings.

31 Those who are attached to the Aggregates.

32 See v. 25.

33 Lust, hatred, delusion, pride, and false views.

34 Undisturbed by defilements.

35 Of lust and so forth.

36 Of passions.

37 That which veils the four Noble Truths.

38 The four floods - namely: sense-desires, becoming, false views, and ignorance.

39 That is, attachment to sense-desires.

40 Arati = dislike for forest life. (Commentary)

41 Upadhi - there are four kinds of upadhi - namely: the aggregates (khandha), the passions (kilesa), volitional activities (abhisaïkàra), and sense-desires (kàma).

42 That is, the world of Aggregates.

43 Sugata§ = well-gone in practice, that is, to Nibbàna.

44 Buddha§ = he who has understood the four Noble Truths.

45 A class of celestial beings.

46 Usabha§, fearless as a bull.

47 Mahesi§, seeker of higher morality, concentration, and wisdom.

48 Vijitàvina§, the conqueror of passions.

49 Nahàtaka§, he who has washed away all impurities.

50 Buddha§, he who has understood the four Noble Truths.

51 Sagga, the six heavenly realms, the sixteen Råpa Realms, and the four Aråpa Realms.

52 Apàya, the four woeful states.

53 Jàtikkhaya§, i.e., Arahantship.

54 Abhi¤¤àvosito, i.e., reached the culmination by comprehending that which should be comprehended, by discarding that which should be discarded, by realizing that which should be realized, and by developing that which should be developed. (Commentary)

55 Sabbavositavosàna§, i.e., having lived the Holy Life which culminates in wisdom pertaining to the Path of Arahantship, the end of all passions.