(Text and Translation by Ven. Nàrada)
ASSOCIATE WITH THE WISE WHO TRY TO CORRECT YOU
1. Should one see a wise man, who, like a revealer of treasure, points out faults and reproves; let one associate with such a wise person; it will be better, not worse, for him who associates with such a one. 76.
The Venerable Sàriputta admitted a poor man into the Order as a mark of gratitude for a ladleful of food offered to him. The new monk was extremely obedient to his teacher and was ever so eager to receive advice that before long he attained Arahantship. The Buddha commented on his readiness to accept advice and exhorted the monks to emulate him.
ADVISERS ARE PLEASING TO THE GOOD, BUT NOT TO THE BAD
2. Let him advise, instruct, and dissuade one from evil; truly pleasing is he to the good, displeasing is he to the bad. 77.
The Buddha requested His two Chief Disciples to advise two unruly monks, remarking that advisers are not loved by the ill-disciplined.
CULTIVATE GOOD FRIENDSHIP
3. Associate not with evil friends, associate not with mean men; associate with good friends, associate with noble men. 78.
The Venerable Channa, who was formerly the charioteer of Prince Siddhattha, was very obstinate and insolent. He used to rebuke the two Chief Disciples. Thrice the Buddha advised him and spoke on good friendship, remarking that the two Chief Disciples were his great friends.
HAPPILY HE LIVES WHO DRINKS OF THE DHAMMA
4. He who imbibes the Dhamma abides in happiness with mind pacified; the wise man ever delights in the Dhamma revealed by the Ariyas. 1 79.
A king entered the Order and, attaining Arahantship, was constantly saying, “oh happiness! The monks misconstruing his joy, told the Buddha that he was evidently thinking of his erstwhile royal pleasures. The Buddha corrected them and said that he was mentally enjoying the bliss of Nibbàna.
THE WISE CONTROL THEMSELVES
5. Irrigators lead the waters; fletchers bend the shafts; carpenters bend the wood; the wise control themselves. 80.
A boy of seven years entered the Order. One day as the novice was accompanying his teacher on his alms rounds he noticed irrigators, fletchers, and carpenters at work and put many questions to his teacher. He thought to himself
if inanimate things could be so controlled, why could he not control his own mind ? He retired to his cell, meditated, and attained Arahantship while yet a boy.
UNSHAKEN AS A ROCK ARE THE WISE AMIDST PRAISE AND BLAME
6. As a solid rock is not shaken by the wind, even so the wise are not ruffled by praise or blame. 81.
Not knowing who he was, some novices harassed a distinguished Arahant who was short in stature. When the Buddha heard that the monk had shown no resentment, He remarked that Arahants remain unmoved like a rock in praise and blame.
THE WISE ARE PEACEFUL
7. Just as a deep lake is clear and still, even so, on hearing the teachings, the wise become exceedingly peaceful. 2 82.
A young woman was rejected by her suitor as her mother sent her to him empty-handed, having spent every thing she had on the monks. The disappointed woman reviled the monks. The Buddha preached the Dhamma to her and her mind was pacified.
THE WISE ARE NEITHER ELATED NOR DEPRESSED
8. The good give up (attachment for) everything; 3 the saintly prattle not with sensual craving: whether affected by happiness or by pain, the wise show neither elation nor depression. 83.
At the invitation of a brahmin the Buddha and His disciples were once spending the rainy season in Vera¤jà. Though they were neglected and were not well looked after, through forgetfulness on the part of the brahmin, the monks were not displeased. On returning to Sàvatthi they were well looked after, but were not elated thereby. The Buddha remarked that the wise are neither elated nor depressed.
SUCCESS SHOULD NOT BE SOUGHT BY WRONGFUL MEANS
9. Neither for the sake of oneself nor for the sake of another (does a wise person do any wrong); he should not desire son, wealth or kingdom (by doing wrong): by unjust means he should not seek his own success. Then (only) such a one is indeed virtuous, wise and righteous. 84.
A righteous person desired to leave the world and enter the Order. Although his wife tried to dissuade him each time he sought her permission, he joined the Order, and before long attained Arahantship. Subsequently his wife and son also entered the Order and attained Arahantship. Buddha spoke in praise of them.
FEW GO BEYOND
10. Few are there amongst men who go Beyond; the rest of mankind only run about on the bank. 4 85.
THOSE WHO FOLLOW THE DHAMMA GO BEYOND
11. But those who act rightly according to the teaching, which is well expounded, those are they who will reach the Beyond – Nibbàna – (crossing) the realm of passions, 5 so hard to cross. 86.
The devout residents in a certain street decided to give alms to the monks and hear the Dhamma throughout the night. But overcome by passions, some returned home, some remained but kept nodding. Hearing what had happened, the Buddha explained the nature of worldlings.
12. Kaõha§ dhamma§ vippahàya Þ
sukka§ bhàvetha paõóito
Okà anoka§ àgamma Þ
viveke yattha dårama§. 87.
13. Tatràbhiratim iccheyya Þ
hitvà kàme aki¤cano
Pariyodapeyya attàna§ Þ
cittaklesehi paõóito. 88.
14. Yesa§ sambodhiaïgesu Þ
sammà citta§ subhàvita§
anupàdàya ye ratà
Khãõàsavà jutãmanto Þ
te loke parinibbutà. 89.
GIVE UP EVIL, CULTIVATE GOOD
SEEK HAPPINESS IN SOLITUDE
THE NON-ATTACHED ARE PEACEFUL
12-13. Coming from home to the homeless, the wise man should abandon dark states 6 and cultivate the bright. He should seek great delight in detachment (Nibbàna), so hard to enjoy. Giving up sensual pleasures, with no impediments, 7 the wise man should cleanse himself of the impurities of the mind. 87-88.
14. Whose minds are well perfected in the Factors of Enlightenment, 8 who, without clinging, delight in “the giving up of grasping” 9 (i.e., Nibbàna), they, the corruption-free, shining ones, have attained Nibbàna even in this world. 89.
Five hundred monks visited the Buddha and He admonished them.
1 Ariya, which means `one who is far removed from passions’, was originally a racial term. In Buddhism it indicates nobility of character, and is invariably applied to the Buddhas and the Arahants.
2 By attaining Sainthood.
3 The five Aggregates etc. See v. 203.
4 Namely: self-illusion (sakkàyaditthi). The majority are born again in this world.
5 Maccudheyya. i.e., worldly existence where passions dominate.
6 The dark states (kaõha§ dhamma§) are the ten kinds of evil deeds, and the bright states (sukka§) are the ten kinds of good deeds. See notes on vv. 42, 43.
7 The five Hindrances (nãvaraõa) that obstruct the way to Deliverance. They are, sense-desires (kàmacchanda), ill-will (vyàpàda), sloth and torpor (thãnamiddha), restlessness and brooding (uddhacca-kukkucca) and indecision (vicikicchà). See A Manual of Buddhism by the translator.
8 See note on v 44.