Classic and Contemporary Buddhist Works

The Connected Discourses of the Buddha - Selections

Chapter 1. Devatāsaṃyutta: Connected Discourses with Devatās

III. A Sword

21 (1) A Sword
At Sāvatthī. Standing to one side, that devatā recited this verse in the presence of the Blessed One:

51 “As if smitten by a sword,
      As if his head were on fire,
      A bhikkhu should wander mindfully
      To abandon sensual lust.”

[The Blessed One:]

52 “As if smitten by a sword,
      As if his head were on fire,
      A bhikkhu should wander mindfully
      To abandon identity view.”

22 (2) It Touches <28>

53 “It does not touch one who does not touch,
      But then will touch the one who touches.
      Therefore it touches the one who touches,
      The one who wrongs an innocent man.”

54 “If one wrongs an innocent man,
      A pure person without blemish,
      The evil falls back on the fool himself
      Like fine dust thrown against the wind.”

23 (3) Tangle

55 “A tangle inside, a tangle outside,
      This generation is entangled in a tangle.
      I ask you this, O Gotama,
      Who can disentangle this tangle?” <29>

56 “A man established on virtue, wise,
      Developing the mind and wisdom,
      A bhikkhu ardent and discreet:
      He can disentangle this tangle.

57 “Those for whom lust and hatred
      Along with ignorance have been expunged,
      The arahants with taints destroyed:
      For them the tangle is disentangled.

58 “Where name-and-form ceases,
      Stops without remainder,
      And also impingement and perception of form:
      It is here this tangle is cut.” [14]

24 (4) Reining in the Mind

59 “From whatever one reins in the mind,
      From that no suffering comes to one. <30>
      Should one rein in the mind from everything,
      One is freed from all suffering.”

60 “One need not rein in the mind from everything
      When the mind has come under control.
      From whatever it is that evil comes,
      From this one should rein in the mind.”

25 (5) The Arahant

61 “If a bhikkhu is an arahant,
      Consummate, with taints destroyed,
      One who bears his final body,
      Would he still say, ‘I speak’?
      And would he say, ‘They speak to me’?”

62 “If a bhikkhu is an arahant, <31>
      Consummate, with taints destroyed,
      One who bears his final body,
      He might still say, ‘I speak,’
      And he might say, ‘They speak to me.’
      Skilful, knowing the world’s parlance,
      He uses such terms as mere expressions.”

63 “When a bhikkhu is an arahant,
      Consummate, with taints destroyed,
      One who bears his final body,
      Is it because he has come upon conceit
      That he would say, ‘I speak,’
      That he would say, ‘They speak to me’?”

64 “No knots exist for one with conceit abandoned;
      For him all knots of conceit are consumed.
      Though the wise one has transcended the conceived, [15]
      He still might say, ‘I speak,’ <32>
      He might say too, ‘They speak to me.’
      Skilful, knowing the world’s parlance,
      He uses such terms as mere expressions.”

26 (6) Sources of Light

65 “How many sources of light are in the world
      By means of which the world is illumined?
      We have come to ask the Blessed One this:
      How are we to understand it?”

66 “There are four sources of light in the world;
      A fifth one is not found here.
      The sun shines by day,
      The moon glows at night,

67 And fire flares up here and there
      Both by day and at night.
      But the Buddha is the best of those that shine: <33>
      He is the light unsurpassed.”

27 (7) Streams

68 “From where do the streams turn back?
      Where does the round no longer revolve?
      Where does name-and-form cease,
      Stop without remainder?”

69 “Where water, earth, fire, and air,
      Do not gain a footing:
      It is from here that the streams turn back,
      Here that the round no longer revolves;
      Here name-and-form ceases,
      Stops without remainder.”

28 (8) Those of Great Wealth <34>

71 “Those of great wealth and property,
      Even khattiyas who rule the country,
      Look at each other with greedy eyes,
      Insatiable in sensual pleasures.

72 Among these who have become so avid,
      Flowing along in the stream of existence,
      Who here have abandoned craving?
      Who in the world are no longer avid?”

73 “Having left their homes and gone forth,
      Having left their dear sons and cattle,
      Having left behind lust and hatred, <35>
      Having expunged ignorance—
      The arahants with taints destroyed
      Are those in the world no longer avid.” [16]

29 (9) Four Wheels

74 “Having four wheels and nine doors,
      Filled up and bound with greed,
      Born from a bog, O great hero!
      How does one escape from it?”

75 “Having cut the thong and the strap,
      Having cut off evil desire and greed,
      Having drawn out craving with its root:
      Thus one escapes from it.”

30 (10) Antelope Calves <36>

76 “Having approached you, we ask a question
      Of the slender hero with antelope calves,
      Greedless, subsisting on little food,
      Wandering alone like a lion or nāga,
      Without concern for sensual pleasures:
      How is one released from suffering?”

77 “Five cords of sensual pleasure in the world,
      With mind declared to be the sixth:
      Having expunged desire here,
      One is thus released from suffering.”

 

How to cite this document:
© Bhikkhu Bodhi, The Connected Discourses of the Buddha (Wisdom Publications, 2000)

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