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Samyutta Nikaya V.3

Gotami Sutta

Sister Gotami

Read an alternate translation


At Savatthi. Then, early in the morning, Kisa Gotami the nun put on her robes and, taking her bowl & outer robe, went into Savatthi for alms. When she had gone for alms in Savatthi and had returned from her alms round, after her meal she went to the Grove of the Blind to spend the day. Having gone deep into the Grove of the Blind, she sat down at the foot of a tree for the day's abiding.

Then Mara the Evil One, wanting to arouse fear, horripilation, & terror in her, wanting to make her fall away from concentration, approached her & addressed her in verse:

    Why,    
with your sons killed,
do you sit all alone,
    your face in tears?
    All alone,
immersed in the midst of the forest,
    are you looking
    for a man?
Then the thought occurred to Kisa Gotami the nun: "Now who has recited this verse -- a human being or a non-human one?" Then it occurred to her: "This is Mara the Evil One, who has recited this verse wanting to arouse fear, horripilation, & terror in me, wanting to make me fall away from concentration."

Then, having understood that "This is Mara the Evil One," she replied to him in verses:

I've gotten past
    the killing of sons,
have made that the end
to [my search for] men.
I don't grieve,
I don't weep --
    and I'm not afraid of you,
    my friend.
It's every where destroyed -- delight.
The mass of darkness is shattered.
Having defeated the army of death,
        free
    of fermentations
        I dwell.
Then Mara the Evil One -- sad & dejected at realizing, "Kisa Gotami the nun knows me" -- vanished right there.
Source: ATI - For Free Distribution Only, as a Gift of Dhamma.

Dhamma Essay:
A Discipline of Sobriety by Bhikkhu Bodhi


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