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Theragatha V

(Selected suttas)


V.1 -- Rajadatta

I, a monk,
gone to the charnel ground,
saw a woman cast away,
    discarded
there in the cemetery.

Though some were disgusted,
seeing her -- dead, evil --
            lust
    appeared,
as if I were blind
    to the oozings.

In less time than it takes
for rice to cook,
I got out of that place.
Mindful, alert, I
sat down to one side.
Then apt attention arose in me,
the drawbacks appeared,
    disenchantment stood
    at an even keel:

With that, my heart was released.
See the Dhamma's true rightness!
The three knowledges
have been attained;
the Awakened One's bidding,
        done.


V.8 -- Vakkali

Stricken by sharp, wind-like pains,
you, monk, living in the forest grove
-- harsh, with limited range for alms --
    what, what will you do?

Suffusing my body
with abundant rapture & joy,
& enduring what's harsh,
    I'll stay in the grove.

Developing the frames of reference,
strengths, faculties,
the factors of Awakening,
    I'll stay in the grove.

Reflecting on those who are resolute,
their persistence aroused,
constantly firm in their effort,
united in concord,
    I'll stay in the grove.

Recollecting the One Self-awakened,
self-tamed & centered,
untiring both day & night,
    I'll stay
    in the grove.


V.9 -- Vijitasena

[K.R. Norman, tr.; with permission from the Buddhist Publication Society.]
I shall fasten you, mind, like an elephant at a small gate. I shall not incite you to evil, you net of sensual pleasure, body-born.

When fastened, you will not go, like an elephant not finding the gate open. Witch-mind, you will not wander again, and again, using force, delighting in evil.

As the strong hook-holder makes an untamed elephant, newly taken, turn against its will, so shall I make you turn.

As the excellent charioteer, skilled in the taming of excellent horses, tames a thoroughbred, so shall I, standing firm in the five powers, tame you.

I shall bind you with mindfulness; with purified self shall cleanse [you]. Restrained by the yoke of energy you will not go far from here, mind.


V.10 -- Yasadatta

    Intent on quibbling,
the dullard hears the Conqueror's teaching.

        He's as far from the True Dhamma
        as the ground is from the sky.

    Intent on quibbling,
the dullard hears the Conqueror's teaching.

        He wanes from the True Dhamma,
        like the moon in the dark half of the month.

    Intent on quibbling,
the dullard hears the Conqueror's teaching.

        He withers away in the True Dhamma,
        like a fish in next to no water.

    Intent on quibbling,
the dullard hears the Conqueror's teaching.

        He doesn't grow in the True Dhamma,
        like a rotten seed in a field.

But whoever hears the Conqueror's teaching
    with guarded intent,
    doing away with effluents -- all --
    realizing the unshakable,
    attaining the foremost peace,
        is -- free from effluent --
            totally unbound.

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

Dhamma Essay:
A Remedy for Despair by Bhikkhu Bodhi


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