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Theragatha II

(Selected suttas)


II.13 -- Heraññakani

Days & nights
        fly past.
Life
    comes to an end.
The span of mortals
        runs out,
like the water of a piddling stream.
But the fool doing evil deeds
doesn't realize that later
it's bitter for him:
evil for him
        the result.

II.16 -- Mahakala

This swarthy woman
[preparing a corpse for cremation]
    -- crow-like, enormous --
breaking a thigh & then the other
    thigh,
breaking an arm & then the other
            arm,
cracking open the head,
    like a pot of curds,
she sits with them heaped up beside her.

Whoever, unknowing,
makes acquisitions
    -- the fool --
returns over & over
to suffering & stress.
So, discerning,
don't make acquisitions.
    May I never lie
    with my head cracked open
        again.


II.24 -- Valliya

What needs to be done
with firm persistence,
what needs to be done
by someone who hopes for Awakening,
    that I will do.
    I will not fail.
See: persistence & striving!

You show me the path:
    the straight,
    the plunge into Deathlessness.
I, through sagacity,
will reach it, know it,
as the stream of the Ganges,
    the sea.


II.26 -- Punnamasa

Shedding five hindrances
so as to reach the unexcelled rest
        from the yoke,
taking the Dhamma as mirror
for knowing & seeing myself,
I reflected on this body --
    the whole thing,
    inside & out,
    my own & others'.
How vain & empty it looked!

II.27 -- Nandaka

Just as a fine thoroughbred steed
stumbling, regains its stance,
feeling all the more urgency,
& draws its burden
    undaunted.

In the same way, remember me:
consummate in vision,
a disciple of the Rightly
Self-awakened One,
the Awakened One's thoroughbred child,
        his son.


II.30 -- Kanhadinna

Men of integrity
    have been attended to,
the Dhamma repeatedly
    listened to.
Having listened,
    I followed the straight way,
    the plunge into Deathlessness.

Passion for becoming,
    having been killed by me,
no further such passion
    is found in me.
It neither was
    nor will be
    nor is found in me
        even now.


II.37 -- Sona Potiriyaputta

It's not for sleeping,
    the night garlanded
    with zodiac stars.
The night, for one who knows,
    is for staying awake.

If I were to fall from my elephant's shoulder,
and a tusker trampled me,
death in battle would be better for me,
than that I, defeated,
        survive.

Source: ATI - For Free Distribution Only, as a Gift of Dhamma.

Dhamma Essay:
Refuge in the Buddha by Bhikkhu Bodhi


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