The Tibetan Dhammapada: 16 – 28

buddha-tushita11The Tibetan Dhammapada, the Udanavarga – capp 16 – 28 Compiled by DHARMATRATA

Translated into English from Tibetan by Gareth Sparham with guidance from Lobsang Gyatso and Ngawang Thekchok. English editing by Beth Lee. First published in 1979 by The Tibetan Cultural Printing Press (Dharmasala, India). Published in 1983 by Mahayana Publications (New Delhi, India). Re-published in 1986 by Wisdom Publications (London, England) (out of print). The text herein has been checked against the Tibetan, lightly edited and reformatted. Preface, Introduction, Poem and endnotes are omitted.

Chapter 16 – MISCELLANEOUS

1 Do sentry work, one’s task, at the outset

Because the time for work reverts.

2 When first you have done like this ― Seen the task, and the time for work, and want to end

[Misery], since you have beheld that the practice

[Brings] what is desired ―

You should therefore concentrate until

The purpose is fully attained,

And by concentration and fortitude

Become an island unto yourself.

3 Purify all of your stains

Like a silversmith does silver.

Cleansed of stains, no faults arise;

Birth and death no longer arise.

4 Motivated by their wrong views ―

Ashamed when shame need not be felt

And not ashamed of shameful things,

Afraid of what is not fearful

And unafraid of the fearful ―

The living migrate to lower realms.

5 Those who first are careless in this Dharma practice,

Then later on become cautious,

Illuminate the entire world

Just as the unclouded sun and moon.

6 Those who first are careless in this,

Then later on become cautious,

With remembrance, completely

Pass beyond the craving of this world.

7 Those who became ordained in youth,

Embracing what the Buddha taught,

Illuminate the entire world

Just as the unclouded sun and moon.

8 Those who became ordained in youth,

Embracing what the Buddha taught,

With remembrance, completely

Pass beyond the craving of this world.

9 Those who, having done wrong action,

Screen it off with their virtue,

Are outstanding in the world

Just like the unclouded sun and moon.

10 Those who, having done wrong actions,

Screen it off with their virtue,

With remembrance, completely

Pass beyond the craving of this world.

11 Those who feel no joy for life,

Feel no pain even at death.

The steadfast who behold the state [of nirvana]

Feel no sorrow though in the midst of pain.

12 Those who feel no joy for life,

Feel no pain even at death.

The steadfast who behold the state,

Shine out resplendent midst their relatives.

13 The ordained meditate on white [deeds],

Eliminating black ones.

Having left for homelessness

And developing with enjoyment

A capacity for detachment,

They give up even faint desires.

14 Conduct becomes complete in all respects

When always pure in heart,

Pure in the monk’s confessional

And pure in the unsullied path.

15 Just as the weeds are to the field,

The bane [of us all] is desire.

For those without desire, therefore,

A great result comes from giving.

16 Just as the weeds are to the field

The bane [of us all] is anger.

For those without anger, therefore,

A great result comes from giving.

17 Just as the weeds are to the field

The bane [of humans] is ignorance.

For those without ignorance, therefore,

A great result comes from giving.

18 Just as the weeds are to the field

The bane [of us all] is pride.

For those without pride, therefore,

A great result comes from giving.

19 Just as the weeds are to the field

The bane [of humans] is attachment.

For those without attachment, therefore,

A great result comes from giving.

20 Just as the weeds are to the field

The bane [of us all] is craving.

For those without craving, therefore,

A great result comes from giving.

21 The sixth [the thinking mind] is owner and king.

If there is attachment, it has attachment,

And is without if there is none.

[Those with] attachment are ‘infants.’

22 [Mind] lives within a frame of bones

Plastered over with flesh and blood.

It is a town of hate and pride,

Attachment and hypocrisy,

[A town] of misery sprung from motivation and cause:

Those who don’t recognize this are ensnared in it.

23 Once realized, all rivers are quite left behind.

Non-Buddhists are not free from all those attachments.

This completes the chapter on MISCELLANEOUS.

Chapter 17 – WATER

1 They [who realize this misery] do not like home;

With effort and remembrance,

Like swans leaving a stagnant pond,

They quit their homes and cross the river.

2 Steadfast ones who renounce the world

And crush all classes of demons

Go miraculously in space

Like swans on the path of the sun.

3 Those who do not have good conduct

And find no riches in their youth
Become like old worn-out seagulls
In dirty, turbid, fished-out ponds.

4 Those who do not have good conduct

And find no riches in their youth

Curl up like a ball and sleep,

Remembering the things they did before.

5 Don’t think, “The little wrongs I did

Will make no difference afterwards.”

Just as the single water drops fill up the vase,

So infants become filled with wrongs

Collected little by little.

6 Don’t think, “The little virtues that I did

Will make no difference afterwards.”

Just as the single water drops

Fill up the vase,

So steadfast ones are filled with virtue

Collected little by little.

7 All those that have dammed up the dirty pond,

Wanting to cross the river of the sea,

Are those who have the boats:

The navigators are the wise.

8 The Bhagavan Buddha is [first] across.

The Brahmins are on the dry land.

The monks are washing [on the other side].

The Hearers are in their boats.

9 The learned ones who have great faith

Like fathomless great seas,

Free of taint and turbulence,

Listen to the teachings here.

10 Thus there is water everywhere,

So who is there to run and seek [for it]?

What need for springs [to quench a thirst]?

Cut out [all] craving at its root.

11 As launderers clean with water,

And arrow smiths straighten [arrows] with fire,

As carpenters work with the wood,

The learned should subdue themselves.

12 Without attachment, like the sky,

And like a door-step unperturbed,

The wise dislike this cyclic world

That is like a turbulent ocean.

This completes the chapter on WATER.

Chapter 18 – THE FLOWER

1 Who overcomes this stage [of life and death],

The world of gods, [of humans], and of hells?

Who are the skilful teachers of

The four things, much desired like flowers?

2 The trainees overcome this stage,

The world of gods, [of humans], and of hells. ‘

They are the skilful teachers of

The four things, much wanted like flowers.

3 Since fears arise from the forest,

The forest, not the tree, should be cut down.

Cutting the forests and seedlings,

Religious persons [gain] nirvana.

4 But if the seedlings are not cut,

The subtle still makes beings take birth;

Their minds are tightly fixed by this,

Like calves nearby their mothers wanting milk.

5 Having cut off this liking for oneself,

Just as one plucks an autumn lotus,

Then cultivate the path to peace

To gain nirvana that the Buddhas teach.

6 Don’t turn the words of fine teachings

Into something that bears no fruit,

Like pretty flowers ―

Colorful but without fragrance.

7 Conquerors travel to town [to beg],

Just like the bees that do no harm

To fragrances and colors of flowers,

But sip their nectar and fly away.

8 Do not look out for others’ flaws,

For what they do or do not do,

But look out for what one oneself

Should do and should not do.

9 Just as fragrant and beautiful

Pure lotus blooms arise

From dirty rubbish heaps without water,

So too all ordinary beings who are blind

Become transformed, out of the rubbish heap,

Into the Hearers, and into

Complete Buddhas with clear sight.

10 Just as many garlands are made

From heaps of flowers,

So every virtue big and small

Should be done when born a human.

11 Just as the bakula flower

Withers away in the summer,

Monks should likewise give up hate,

Attachment and stupidity.

12 When people have longing in their minds,

Like accumulations of flowers,

The Lord of Death carries them off

Like a surging flood does a sleeping town.

13 When people have longing in their minds,

Like accumulations of flowers,

The Lord of Death gains control over them

Before all their desires are satisfied.

14 When people have longing in their minds;

Like accumulations of flowers,

The Lord of Death gains control over them

Before enjoyments come about.

15 When people have longing in their minds,

Like accumulations of flowers,

The Lord of Death gains control over them

Before their work is at its end.

16 Knowing this body to be like a pot,

And all phenomena like a mirage,

This great flowering of the demon is cut

Here [in this life] and death is seen no more.

17 Knowing existence to be like a pot,

And all phenomena like a mirage,

This great flowering of the demon is cut

Here [in this life] and death is seen no more.

18 Knowing this body to be like foam,

And all phenomena like a mirage,

The great flowering of the demon is cut

Here [in this life] and death is seen no more.

19 Knowing existence to be like foam,

And all phenomena like a mirage,

This great flowering of the demon is cut

Here [in this life] and death is seen no more.

20 Those monks who think existence essenceless,

[A thought as rare] as the udumbara flower,

Go beyond and cast off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

21 Those monks who cut off all desire

Like water-flowers in ponds [cut] from the root,

Go beyond and cast off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

22 Those monks who cut off all hatred

Like water-flowers in ponds [cut] from the root,

Go beyond and cut off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

23 Those monks who cut all ignorance

Like water-flowers in ponds [cut] from the root,

Go beyond and cast off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

24 Those monks who cut all pride

Like water-flowers in ponds [cut] from the root,

Go beyond and cast off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

25 Those monks who cut all attachment

Like water-flowers in ponds [cut] from the root,

Go beyond and cast off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

26 Those monks who cut off all craving

Like water-flowers in ponds [cut] from the root,

Go beyond and cast off what’s not beyond

Like old serpents shedding old skin.

This completes the chapter on FLOWER.

Chapter 19 – THE HORSE

1 Just as fine horses when lashed with the whip

Are scared and gallop fast, all those with faith,

Ethics, stability and knowledge of

All things, with [subdued] powers and equipoise,

The happiness of patience, and friendship ―

These [with such] protectors leave all craving behind.

2 just as fine horses when lashed with the whip

Are scared and gallop fast, all those with faith,

Ethics, stability and knowledge of

All things, with insight and mobility ―

All of the protectors with remembrance

Leave every misery behind.

3 The Mighty who restrain their [sense] powers,

Just as a trainer tames a horse,

Stop anger and end contamination

And obtain even the experience of gods.

4 Like fine horses [leave] lesser nags,

The very wise give up and go

From drowsiness with vigilance

And from carelessness with caution.

5 Just as a fine horse [does not need] a whip,

When someone has a sense of shame,

Wisdom and perfect equipoise

Wrongdoing is removed.

6 One takes the tamed [horse] to the field

[of games or war]

And the king rides forth on that tamed [horse].

Those who are patient when abused,

The tamed, are the finest among all humans.

7 Taming oneself is better than

Taming a high strung thoroughbred,

Taming the mightiest of elephants;

Better than breaking mules.

[Those] skilful ones who properly

Subdue themselves find peace;

All the other mounts

Can never actually achieve that state.

8 Taming oneself is better than

Taming a high strung thoroughbred,

Taming the mightiest of elephants;

Better than breaking mules.

Those with remembrance who properly

Subdue themselves go to the end of pain;

All of the other mounts

Can never actually achieve that state.

9 Taming oneself is better than

Taming a high strung thoroughbred,

Taming the mightiest of elephants;

Better than breaking mules.

Those with remembrance who properly

Subdue themselves give up [bad] migrations;

All of the other mounts

Can never actually achieve that state.

10 Taming oneself is better than

Taming a high strung thoroughbred,

Taming the mightiest of elephants;

Better than breaking mules,

For those who properly subdue themselves

Sever and leave clasping behind;

All of the other mounts

Can never actually achieve that state.

11 Just as a trainer tames a fine horse

Similarly one should tame oneself.

By properly taming oneself,’

The limits of all pain are passed.

12 Since one’s own lord is just oneself

And oneself is one’s own refuge,

Just as a trainer tames a fine horse

Similarly one should subdue oneself.

This completes the chapter on THE HORSE.

Chapter 20 – WRATH

1 When wrath and all conceit are given up,

All clasps are left behind, and attachment

For name and form no more, then there is nothing

At all for which attachments can arise.

2 Give up wrath the moment it occurs,

And attachments [just] when they arise.

The steadfast expel ignorance,

And given up: seeing truth find happiness.

3 One sleeps in peace when wrath is given up

One is not tormented by pain.

4 The fully ordained, destroy wrath [along with]

The root poison that destroys happiness.

By doing so one ends sorrow

And earns praise from Superiors.

5 Whoever becomes enraged and shouts,

I did it well! There’s nothing wrong!”

Is tormented when the wrath subsides,

As though by burning flames.

6 Without regret or embarrassment

The wrathful lack all shame.

Nobody relies on a person

Completely overcome with rage.

7 The power of strong infantile beings

Is no power at all.

The infantile without religion

Have no hope of accomplishment

8 Those who are powerful, but still

Show tolerance toward the poor,

Their patience, it’s said, is best ―

They always care for and respect the weak.

9 Those who, though in authority

Show tolerance toward the poor,

Their patience, it’s said, is best ―

They always care for and respect the weak.

10 The strong who are patient

Even in the face of gross provocation,

Their patience, it’s said, is best ―

They always care for and respect the weak.

11 The strong who are patient

Even in the face of gross provocations [e.g., being despised / defamed]

Their patience, it’s said, is best ―

They always care for and respect the weak.

12 Those who remain tranquil

When they perceive another’s wrath,

Protect themselves and other beings

From every great anxiety.

13 Those who remain tranquil

When they perceive another’s wrath,

Do work that has advantage for

Both themselves and for other beings.

14 All the beings [who are] unskilled in religion

Think easily, “They are infants”

Of those who do this work which has

Advantage for themselves and others.

15 But holy beings emphasize that the patience

Of those who tolerate inferiors’ words

Excels the patience of one fearing a master’s words,

And the patience toward an equal’s taunt to fight.

16 Infantile beings think they have won

When they hurl abuse in wrath.

The person who tolerates those words

Is always victorious.

17 Don’t be wrathful; say what is true;

Make charity, however small,

To those who beg: these three provide

Foundation for celestial births.

18 Those beside themselves with rage

Don’t even see their own purpose.

Be mindful while in cyclic existence ―

Refrain from speaking words of wrath.

19 Since those who answer wrath with wrath

Turn into wicked beings,

Those answering wrath with wrathlessness

Win the hard battle, valiantly.

20 Wrathlessness can withstand wrath

And good withstands what is not good.

Benevolence can withstand avarice

And truth withstands what is not true.

21 How could a calm person, with right livelihood

And without wrath become wrathful?

Freed by their knowledge of the truth

The wise are without wrath.

22 Though Superiors always devote themselves

To remaining without wrath and cruelty,

All wrathful, wicked beings

Tower like intractable mountains.

23 Those who control their wrath when it rears up,

As they would a horse when it strays loose,

I call ‘the best trainers’; those who

[Must] rope it down are common beings.

This completes the chapter on WRATH.

Chapter 21 – The One Thus GoneThe Tathagata

1 Who could teach me, All-knowing of this world,

Outshining all, untainted here by anything,

Completely free, without craving, released,

Who alone has achieved omniscience?

2 Who could teach me, Unequalled and unique,

Who found enlightenment and who alone can teach it?

I, the One Thus Gone, all-powerful

And omniscient teacher of humans and gods.

3 I am this world’s Foe Destroyer [Arhat],

Matchless throughout the universe.

I am the king throughout celestial realms,

For I have overcome all demons [maras].

4 Since there is no one who is like me

I have no one for a master.

I alone found matchless, complete

Enlightenment here in this world.

5 Know those like me who found the end

Of contamination to be the kings.

I conquered what is wrong

And thereby conquered afflictions.

6 Since worldly people could not know

The origin [of buddhahood] unless they are taught,

I went to Varanasi

An all-knowing Buddha in nirvana,

Beyond all craving for the world

And beating the drum of the teaching,

Turned the wheel of the dharma

Which no one in this world had turned.

7 Heroic Tathagatas

Subdue this world with their teaching.

No scholar would disdain the way

They pacify with their teaching

8 The gods and humans take pleasure

In beings of quick intelligence

Who have taken final bodies ―

Those reckoned as the perfect Buddhas

Who sit steadfast in samadhi,

Renounced of the world, and abiding in peace.

9 The nature of the completed Buddhas ―

All Buddhas of the past,

And all Buddhas yet to come,

And all those now in perfect buddhahood,

Those who have worked before,

Will work, or who are working now

To eliminate the many sorrows ―

Is to revere the Holy Dharma.

10 So if you like [to help] yourself,

And want eminence in this world,

Have recollection of Buddha’s teaching

And revere the holy doctrine.

11 All those infants who have no faith

In what the Buddha taught

Proceed into the place of sorrow

Like the merchants lured by cannibals.

12 All the wise ones who generate

Faith in the teaching of Buddha

Proceed across to happiness

Like the merchant who had the horse.

13 Ones Thus Gone, unequalled and unique

Buddhas, who work with both conceptions

Of happiness and likewise detachment,

Dispel dullness, go beyond, and have renown.

14 They found the prize, have power over mind,

Are free, uncontaminated, quite free,

Free at heart without strife and contamination,

Looking to help worldly beings.

15 Like people on a mountain peak

Look down on all below,

So too, those pure-hearted and free from pain

Who reach the height of the dharma abode,

Look down on all those suffering

With the burdensome pain of birth and death,

And open the door to immortality.

You who want to hear, remove all doubt.

With this completes the chapter on THE ONE THUS GONE.

Chapter 22 – LISTENING

1 Hearing is excellent; and the deeds are excellent;

Departing the household [life] is excellent.

Encircling (compatibly) the eliminator (i.e., the path of accumulation) is excellent;

Likewise that (path of preparation) which is compatible with religious practice (i.e., the path of seeing).

2 Unwise and infantile beings

Act as though they are immortal.

The wise, like sick people at night,

Work at the Holy Dharma.

3 Just as those living in the gloom

Of a heavily-curtained home

Don’t see the objects which are there

Even though they have the eyes to see,

So too, those with intelligence,

Though of [noble] lineage in this human [world],

Don’t understand, until they hear

The dharma of wrongs and virtue.

Just as those who have eyes can see

All of the objects with a lamp,

So too, understanding occurs [from]

Hearing the dharma of wrongs and virtue.

4 By listening, all religions

Are understood, wrongs are removed.

By listening, what is meaningless

Is given up and nirvana is attained.

5 Though one has listened many times,

Yet if not governed by good ethics

One’s ethics are a cause for scorn:

That listening is not complete.

6 Though one has not listened many times,

Yet if governed by good ethics,

One’s ethics are a cause for praise:

That listening becomes complete.

7 If one has not listened many times

And is not governed by good ethics,

From both sides there is cause for scorn:

There is not complete probity.

8 If one has listened many times

And is governed by good ethics

From both sides there is cause for praise

There is complete probity.

9 Like this earth’s golden ornaments,

No one at all disparages

Those with much listening, who hold

Religion, are wise and in equipoise.

10 All those inferring [me] from form,

Evaluating me from voice,

Those beings who have longing desire,

Have no understanding of me.

11 If there is inner understanding

And the external is not seen,

This inner result is a seeing

Which words can lead astray.

12 If the external is seen

And there is no inner understanding,

This outer result is a seeing

Which words can lead astray.

13 If there’s neither inner understanding

Nor is the external seen,

The infant is completely obscured

And words can lead [that one] astray.

14 If there is inner understanding

And the external is seen,

The wise, renounced, exemplary one

Cannot be led astray by words.

15 Though most everything has been heard

And many things been seen,

The steadfast don’t properly base

Their trust on what they heard and saw.

16 Though the essence is known [from] listening

To fine words, and known [from] all samadhis,

Understanding and listening have no

Great benefit to careless profligates.

17 Whoever likes the doctrine that the Superiors teach,

Whose conduct of body and speech accords with that,

They’re patient, befriended by joy, and restrained,

And achieve hearing, and wisdom’s farther shore.

This completes the chapter on LISTENING.

Chapter 23 – SELF

1 Put into practice the fine words.

Support and serve religious persons.

Retreat in detachment

And pacify your mind.

2 In retreat with one place to sleep,

Avoiding every laziness,

Live in the forest all alone

And all alone subdue yourself.

3 Whoever triumphs over self

Achieves a conquest greater than

The conquerors who win

A hundred thousand victories in war.

4 Those who, by always keeping vows,

Become subdued and conquer self,

Their triumph is supreme;

Other conquests are just common.

5 Neither the demon nor Brahma

Nor any god or spirit can vanquish self.

Abiding with wisdom

Only the bhikshu triumphs over that.

6 After grounding yourself properly

Then tame all others as you did yourself.

If one first grounds oneself properly

When taming [others] one is skilled and unafflicted

7 Just as you first did for yourself

Likewise do the same for others too.

Being tamed and peaceful oneself,

One effortlessly tames others.

8 Just as you first did for yourself

Likewise do the same for others too.

Take heed! Tame oneself well.

When one is tamed, one becomes skilled.

9 For your own needs first set aside

The many needs of everybody else;

If one’s need is seen to be great,

One’s need becomes most excellent.

10 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’m skilled,

And will attain every purpose.

11 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’m skilled,

And will attain all religion.

12 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’m skilled

And will become a famous person.

13 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’m skilled

And will achieve great happiness.

14 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’m skilled

And will gain birth in happy realms.

15 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’ll attain

The lasting happiness of heaven.

16 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I stand out

Eminent amongst my friends.

17 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself; in the midst

Of pain there is no suffering.

18 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I cut off

All [attachments’] bonds.

19 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I give up

Birth in every bad migration.

20 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I gain

Liberation from all sorrow.

21 I am the master of myself.

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I will

Attain mastery of myself.

22 I am the master of myself

Who else can be my master?

The master of myself ― I’m close

To actual nirvana.

This completes the chapter on SELF.

Chapter 24 – COMPARISONS

1 It is better to listen to

One line with the meaning of peace,

Than to recite a hundred lines

Of meaningless verse.

2 It is better to listen to

One line about the truth of peace,

Than to recite a hundred lines

Of truthless verse.

3 It is better to live a day or two

Ethically, with equipoise,

Than live one hundred years

In licentious agitation.

4 It is better to live a day or two

In steady perseverance,

Than live one hundred years

In slothful inactivity.

5 It is better to live a day or two

With equipoise and great wisdom,

Than live one hundred years

In foolish agitation.

6 It is better to live a day or two

Seeing arising and perishing,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

7 It is better to live a day or two

Seeing feelings’ end,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

8 It is better to live a day or two

Seeing contaminations’ end,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

9 It is better to live a day or two

Seeing the immutable state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

10 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning that state so hard to see,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

11 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning that exalted state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

12 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning the holy state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

13 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning the immortal state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

14 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning the nectarous state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

15 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning the dustless state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

16 It is better to live a day or two

Discerning the dust-free state,

Than live one hundred years

Without that sight.

17 An offering for just a little time

To one meditating on self is far better

Than a century of fire offerings ―

A hundred years devoted to

One’s jungle sacrificial fire.

18 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of faith in the Enlightened One.

19 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of faith in the Holy Doctrine.

20 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of faith in the [Spiritual] Community.

21 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of compassion for all sentient beings.

22 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a single part

Of compassion for all living beings.

23 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of compassion for the malevolent.

24 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of harboring kind thoughts.

25 Only eating food with the tip

Of kusha grass each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of the holy dharma of fine words.

26 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of faith in the Enlightened One.

27 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match ever. a sixteenth part

Of faith in the Holy Doctrine.

28 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of faith in the Community.

29 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of [love and] compassion for all sentient beings.

30 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of [love and] compassion for all living beings.

31 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of [love and] compassion for the malevolent.

32 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of harboring kind thoughts.

33 Making a century of

A thousand offerings each month,

Can’t match even a sixteenth part

Of the holy dharma of fine words.

34 Any burnt offerings and gifts to worldly [beings]

Made by a person who wants merits

Cannot match even one quarter

Of a prostration made with sincere thought.

This completes the chapter on COMPARISIONS.

FOLIO THREE

Chapter 25 – INTIMATE FRIENDS

1 Wise ones, do not befriend

The faithless, who are mean

And slanderous and cause schism.

Don’t take bad people as your companions.

2 Wise ones, be intimate

With the faithful who speak gently,

Are ethical and do much listening.

Take the best as companions.

3 Do not devote yourself

To bad companions and wicked beings.

Devote yourself to holy people,

And to spiritual friends.

4 By devotion to people like that

You will do goodness, not wrong.

5 By devotion to faithful and wise people

Who have heard much and pondered many things,

By heeding their fine words, even from afar,

Their special qualities are attained here.

6 Since those devoted to inferiors degenerate,

Those to equals mark time,

And those to great ones attain sanctity,

Be devoted to those great ones.

7 By devotion to ethical,

Calm, and most knowledgeable great beings,

One attains to a greatness

Greater even than the great.

8 Just as the clean kusha grass

That wraps a rotten fish

Will also start to rot,

So too will those devoted to an evil person.

9 Just as a leaf folded

To contain an incense offering

Also becomes sweet,

So too will those devoted to the virtuous.

10 When one does no wrong yet

Is devoted to evil people,

One will still be abused,

For others suppose that this one too is bad.

11 The devotee acquires the same faults

As the person not worthy of devotion,

Like an untainted arrow smeared

With the poison of a tainted sheath.

12 Steadfast ones who fear the taint of faults,

Do not befriend bad people.

By close reliance and devotion

To one’s companion,

Soon one becomes just like

The object of one’s devotion.

13 Therefore, knowing that one’s devotion

Is like the casing of the fruit,

The wise devote themselves to holy,

Not to unholy people,

And drawn along the monk’s path

They find the end of misery.

14 Just as a spoon cannot taste the sauce,

Infantile ones do not understand

The doctrine, even after

A lifetime of devotion to the wise.

15 Just as the tongue can taste the sauce.

Those with wisdom can understand

The entire doctrine, after just

A brief attendance on the wise.

16 Because infantile ones lack eyes to see,

Though they devote their lifetimes

To the wise, they never

Understand the entire doctrine.

Those with wisdom fully understand

The entire doctrine after just

A brief attendance on the wise.

They have eyes to see.

17 Though they devote their lifetimes

To wise beings, infantile ones

Do not understand the doctrine

Of the Buddha in its entirety.

Those with wisdom understand

The doctrine of the Buddha

In its entirety after just

A brief attendance on the wise.

18 Even just one meaningful line

Sets the wise ones to their task,

But all the teaching that the Buddhas gave

Won’t set infantile ones to work.

19 The intelligent will understand

A hundred lines from one,

But for the infantile beings

A thousand lines do not suffice for one.

20 [If one must choose between them],

Better the wise even if unfriendly.

No infant is suited to be a friend.

Sentient beings intimate with

The infant-like are led to hell.

21 Wise persons are those who know

Infantile ones for what they are:

‘Infantile ones’ are those

Who take infants to be the wise.

22 The censure of the wise

Is far preferable

To the eulogy or praise

Of the infant.

23 Devotion to infants brings misery.

Since they are like one’s foe,

It is best to never see or hear

Or have devotion for such people.

24 Like meeting friends, devotion to

The steadfast causes happiness.

25 Therefore, like the revolving stars and moon,

Devote yourself to the steadfast, moral ones

Who have heard much, who draw on what is best

The kind, the pure, the best superior ones.

This completes the chapter on INTIMATE FRIENDS.

Chapter 26 – NIRVANA

1 The monk contracts conceptual thought,

Like the tortoise his limbs into his shell,

Not relying, nor doing others harm

In nirvana, not scorned by anyone.

2 Patience, the Buddha says, is the best austerity,

And the best patience is nirvana.

3 Ordained people who harm others

Are certainly not religious people.

4 Do not speak even one harsh word.

Once spoken there will be response.

From words which sow discord,

Come misery and later punishments.

5 If I retaliate

It is like striking on a gong.

The experience of life and death

In cyclic existence goes on and on.

6 If I do not retaliate

It’s like not striking on a gong.

Then discord does not pile up

And nirvana is thus attained.

7 Freedom from sickness is a holy gift;

Contentment is opulence.

[Indulgence] the finest friend,

And nirvana the finest bliss.

8 Pervading misery is odious,

Of all sickness, hunger unbearable.

To the extent that this is known

Nirvana becomes the best.

9 Few go to happy migrations,

Uncountable numbers to bad.

When the fault is realized

Nirvana is quickly attained.

10 Happy migration has its cause,

And bad migration has its cause.

Going to nirvana is caused,

So there are causes for them all.

11 Fine woods are the animals’ range,

The sky the range of all the birds;

The dharma is the range of intellect,

Nirvana is the Foe Destroyers’ range.

12 A feeble effort and small mind,

And lack of understanding in this [task],

Will not procure the liberation

Where every knot has been severed.

13 Just as the rowboat is lightened

When you bail all the water out,

So too nirvana is attained

When hate and greed are given up.

14 That which arose before does not [now]

That which has not arisen arises.

[In nirvana there is no affliction] that arose or will arise

Or which arises at present.

15 Understanding the hard to see, the limitless,

A happiness unseen, [having become a] knower of truth,

And seeing no craving and liking:

The end of misery is, then, like this.

16 All craving is severed,

Attachment really given up,

From the lake now dry there is no flow:

The end of misery is, then, like this.

17 The body destroyed, feelings cooled down,

Discrimination stopped, volition

At peace, and consciousness subdued:

The end of misery is, then, like this.

18 When looking becomes just seeing,

When listening becomes just hearing,

When realizing just realization,

When being conscious just consciousness:

The end of misery is, then, like this.

19 This, mother, pain and great pain:

The end of misery is, then, like this.

20 No hope, no loves, in complete peace,

Free from attachment always:

The end of misery is, then, like this.

Where the basis exists, deeds come about. Where deeds exist, straying comes about. Where straying exists, inflexi­bility comes about. Where inflexibility exists, going and coming come about. Where going and coming exist, trans­migration at death comes about.

Where transmigration has taken place in this way, birth, old age, sickness and death, sorrow, cries of anguish, miseries, mental unhappiness and strife arise. This which is simply a great heap of misery arises.

Where the basis does not exist, deeds do not come about. Where deeds no not exist, straying does not come about. Where straying has not come about, flexibility comes into being. Where there is flexibility, going and coming do not come about. Where going and coming do not exist, trans­migration does not come about. Where transmigration does not exist, birth, old age, sickness and death, sorrow, cries of anguish, miseries, mental unhappiness and strife are all stopped. This which is simply a great heap of misery is stopped.

Oh monks! The unborn, un-originated, un-fabricated, uncom­pounded, un-arising exists. Birth, origination, fabrication, mental production, composition, and interdependent arising exist.

Oh monks! Were the unborn, un-originated, un-fabricated, uncompounded, un-arising not to exist, I would not state that there is the definite emergence from birth, origination, fabri­cation, mental production, composition, and interdependent arising.

Oh monks! It is because the unborn, un-originated, un-fabri­cated, uncompounded, un-arising exists that I state there is the definite emergence from birth, origination, fabrication, composition, mental production and interdependent arising.

21 Don’t like what will perish, what is

Born, arisen, and originated,

Is fabricated, composite and unstable

And arises from the stream of food.

22 Happiness is peace on the basis

Of renunciation and rough and subtle

Investigation, [when] every misery

Is stopped and composites are at peace.

Oh monks! With clairvoyance I see [it] does not abide anywhere. For it does not abide in the earth, the water, the fire or the wind. It does not abide in the source of boundless space, in the source of boundless consciousness, in the source of nothingness, or in the source of neither existence nor non­existence of discrimination. And it does not abide in this world or the next, on the moon or on the sun. There is no observation of it.

Oh monks! I do not state that going and coming exist there, for there is no abiding. I do not state that there is transmigration for there is no arising. The end of misery is, then, like this.

23 It does not abide anywhere:

In earth, in water, fire or wind.

There whiteness does not illuminate

Nor does darkness exist there.

There the moon does not appear.

There the sun does not shine out.

24 It is the knowledge of those

Who are Brahmin Conquerors.

It is freedom from formlessness,

From forms and every misery.

25 [Nirvana is] the destination, [is] fearlessness,

[Is] without regrets and vanity.

The pains of life are chopped to bits,

So the last body is reached.

26 The ultimate destination ―

This is a state of peace without equal

Where all signification ends ―

A pure freedom which is immortal.

27 Emerging from what is and what is not

Comparable, Buddhas give up the composite,

With inner joy and equipoise

They crack open the shell and emerge.

28 The gift of teaching surpasses all gifts,

The happiness of [hearing] teaching, all happiness,

The power of patience surpasses all power,

The end of craving surpasses all bliss.

This completes the chapter on NIRVANA.

Chapter 27 – SEEING

1 Like chaff that is tossed up,

Somebody else’s faults

Are seen more easily than one’s own.

One’s own faults are hard to see.

2 The person always finding fault

Is like a cheater playing dice:

Hiding the truth about himself

And looking out for others’ faults.

Dharma recedes far from sight ―

It makes the crooked dharma thrive.

3 Chattering, and stealing unabashed,

Raven-like, with filthy actions,

Those whose habits are most afflicted

Live an easy shameless life.

4 Always seeking for cleanliness,

Not being coarse, exercising restraint,

Pure in livelihood and beliefs:

Life with a sense of shame is hard.

5 These worldly beings are blind.

Those with insight are few.

As [few] birds escape from a snare

Hardly any enjoy high birth.

6 Infants ensnared by their bodies

Revolve through a cycle of darkness.

Worldly beings attached to wealth

Look, as it were, on other stuff.

7 Thinking “I brought these people forth”

And “That other being has done it”,

They see as truth what is not true

And therefore do not see at all.

8 Hardly any see this [selflessness],

They do not see the sharp pain.

9 Beings who crave objects have attachment.

Those who have already seen that sharp pain

Hold neither the view “I have done it,”

Nor, “It was done by someone else.”

10 All the living beings have pride

Are attached and fettered by pride.

These disputatious people

Do not reverse the wheel [of life].

11 All that has been achieve

And all that is to be achieved

Are both covered over by dust.

After [understanding this, Superiors] train as sick persons.

Those who make an essence and are at one extreme, are those who are ethical and train themselves, have good conduct, pure behavior, undertake austerities and attend on protectors, etc.

Those holding such a belief in self say, “Desire [for sex] is clean, desire is meritorious, desire is to be enjoyed, desire is without fault”; all who take [as path to liberation] the conduct which falls into what is intensely desired are also at an extreme.

All those two extremes [of action] make bigger the [living] graveyards. For by those actions the graveyards have become bigger. Some of those who do not see these two extremes are lustful, [believe enjoyment from desires to be virtue]. Others chase after things, [exhaust themselves in meaningless practices]. Those who [realize the two extremes for what they are] see those people to be lustful and chasing after things.

Those who do see these two extremes are not lustful and do not chase after things. Those who have eyes also see that these people do not have intense lust and do not chase after things intensely. Those who see selflessness do not act like that [take enjoyment of desire as path]. They do not think like that. They do not designate [a course of action followed by a person substantially different to aggregates] to be the path. The end of misery is like this.

12 Those who look at this transient world

Just as one looks at a bubble,

And as one looks at a mirage,

Are not seen by the King of Death.

13 Those who look upon the body

Just as one looks tit a bubble,

And as one looks at a mirage,

Are not seen by the King of Death.

14 The wise do not become attached

To what attracts infantile beings.

Look on this body always

As a colorful royal chariot.

15 The wise do not become confused

By what confuses infantile beings.

Look on this body always,

As a colorful royal chariot.

16 Through this [attachment to body] infants degenerate,

Like old elephants stuck in mud.

Look on this body always

As a colorful royal chariot.

17 Always look upon this body

Which does not abide unchangingly

As a diseased and transient thing

Similar to a wound one has received.

18 Look on this body all adorned

With rubies, earrings and bracelets

As a diseased and transient thing

Which does not abide continuously.

19 Hair-styles ornamented with braids,

And eyes made up with eye-shadow

Confuse the infant-like beings,

But not those working for the other side.

20 Eyes freshly painted with make-up,

Ornamented bodies of pus,

Confuse the infant-like beings,

But not those working for the other side.

21 The body, fragrant with perfume,

With legs bedaubed with red color,

Confuses infant-like beings,

But not those working for the other side.

22 Those who, clasped to desire, have attachment

And do not see the fault in clasping,

Who are attached to having what they desire

Do not cross the vast endless river.

23 The best, final, and fully unattached ones

Do not view self or mine in this [world],

And thus freed, they cross over the river

Not crossed before, and are not reborn again.

24 Come here! Have a look at this person

In freedom bonds, who left the thicket

And thicket-less gave up the woods

And ran away to the forest.

25 Behold the travel, without wickedness

In carriages spread with white canopies,

With matching spokes, and pleasing parts.

Cut the continuum of chains.

26 Most of those petrified with fright

Go for refuge to the woods,

To gardens, and to sacred groves,

To temples and to trees.

27 Those are not the foremost refuge.

Those are not the finest refuge.

By taking refuge in those things

One is not freed from all misery.

28 When those who’ve gone for refuge to

The Buddha, Doctrine and Community

Are travelling to nirvana,

It is the Eightfold Path

Of Superiors that sees with wisdom

All four truths of Superior beings:

The misery, its origin,

Complete passing from misery,

And happiness [the path].

That is the finest refuge,

That is the holy refuge.

By taking refuge in that place

One is freed from all misery.

29 See by seeing; with sight, see the unseen.

[Those who] see with non sight don’t see what should be seen.

Simulated sight is said to be separate from insight,

Just as day and night don’t meet in one place.

30 There is no seeing from simulated sight;

If there is seeing, it isn’t simulated ―

This seeing is not affected:

One with affected sight doesn’t see.

31 One with affected sight doesn’t see anything;

If one sees what [it is], seeing isn’t simulated.

One who sees like that is separate from

The one with simulated sight.

32 When one does not see suffering

Then one sees ‘self’;

To the extent that suffering is perceived,

Seeing is not affected.

33 If [seeing] the arising of events is obscured by anything,

Then composites are not seen as suffering.

Therefore, if [obscured], seeing is simulated;

If without [obscuration], it is not.

This completes the chapter on SEEING.

Chapter 28 – EVIL

1 Here is the teaching of Buddha:

Do not do any evil deed.

Completely perfect all virtue.

Completely pacify your mind.

2 Merit increases greatly from giving.

The well-controlled don’t collect enemies.

Virtue eliminates evil.

Nirvana is the end of affliction.

3 Better live with the wise or even alone,

Than with the infantile and those alloyed.

Those who are wise abandon evil beings

Like swans which extract milk from water.

4 Superiors who see the flaw

Of this world and see the cessation of it

Do not take pleasure in evil.

The evil do not like virtue.

5 Tasting the excellent flavor

Of peace and complete detachment,

Plagues and evil are no more:

The taste of liking dharma is imbibed.

6 When mental contamination

Is gone and chains don’t warp the mind,

When virtue and evil are left behind,

All bad migrations hold no fear.

7 Rely on people who turn one from

Unfounded ways and speak of good,

Who show the consequence, and are

Scholars, confuting [falsity] and speaking [truth].

If one relies on such people

Good not evil comes about.

8 Liberated and in great peace,

Speaking gently without conceit,

They shake out every evil deed

Like wind shaking the leaves from trees.

9 Like dust that’s thrown into the wind,

Pure ones who have no afflictions,

Nor wrath, stop the evil response

To the infants who become angry with them.

10 To the doer of virtue, virtue;

To the doer of evil, evil.

All deeds that someone has done

Will each be met by that very same person.

11 The afflictive response is mine alone

If I have done an evil deed,

And mine alone the purity

If I did not do evil.

12 No one does another’s work,

Pure or impure, [the person alone] does the work.

13 The evil I myself have done,

And accumulated quickly,

Ruins and overcomes my mind

Like diamonds boring into gems.

14 Just as pedestrians with [open] eye

Proceed along a frightful path,

The wise here in this world

Abandon every evil deed.

15 The wise abandon evil beings

Like the wealthy a glut of friends,

Like merchant traders fearful roads,

Like those who want to live, poison.

16 Just as poison has no effect

Even when taken in the palm

Which has no open wound, so too

There is no evil unless the deed was done.

17 To do wrong and what is without

Benefit to oneself is easy.

That most excellent work which brings

Pleasure and benefits is hard.

18 That evil which is easy for bad persons

Superiors find hard to do.

The holy find goodness easy,

And evil most difficult to do.

19 Pleasures delight the infants’ minds

Until fruition of evil.

Their minds are filled with torment

When fruition of evil occurs.

20 Until fruition of evil

They view the evil deed as fine.

They look on it as evil

When fruition of evil occurs.

21 Until fruition of goodness

They view the goodness as evil.

They look on it as goodness

When fruition of goodness occurs.

22 Since it amasses misery

Don’t take pleasure in evil deeds.

Though done once in a hundred times

Don’t do them time and time again.

23 Since it amasses happiness,

Take pleasure in making merit.

Even if merit has been made

Keep doing so time and time again.

24 Instead of loving evil deeds

And leisurely making merit,

Make haste to make merit and turn

The mind away from wickedness.

25 Even a tiny evil deed

Can cause great ruin and trouble

In the world that lies beyond ―

Like poison that has entered the body.

26 Even small meritorious acts

Bring happiness to future lives,

Accomplishing a great purpose

Like seeds becoming bounteous crops.

27 The one who becomes enraged at those

Without anger, and [who] hurts the innocent,

Will quickly achieve [in return]

Simply one of ten endowments:

Unbearable experience,

Or physical dismemberment,

Or else excruciating pain,

Or becoming mentally disturbed,

Or wrenched away from kin and friends,

Or running out of all enjoyments,

Or facing the cruelty of the king,

Or hearing unbearable abuse,

Or else a great conflagration

Will certainly burn down that person’s home,

Or tenth, that person obtains a bad rebirth

After death as a simpleton.

28 When evil has been done there is no ease.

There is no ease even though it was done

In solitude, long past or far away.

There is fruition, so there is no ease.

29 When merits have been made, then there is ease.

There is an experience of ease, though they were made

In solitude, long past or far away.

There is fruition, therefore there is ease.

30 The evil I have done causes anguish,

Causes torment even though it was done

In solitude, long past or far away.

There is fruition which causes anguish.

Seeing that I myself possess black deeds

Causes anguish here and elsewhere as well.

The evil done causes twofold anguish ―

Anguish that is intense torment.

31 The merits I have made bring happiness,

Bring gladness even though they were made

In solitude, long past or far away.

There is fruition which brings happiness.

Seeing that I myself possess pure deeds

Brings happiness here and elsewhere as well.

The merit made brings twofold happiness

Happiness that is intense gladness.

32 The evil I have done causes sorrow,

Causes grief even though it was done

In solitude, long past or far away.

There is fruition which causes sorrow.

Seeing that I myself possess black deeds

Causes sorrow here and in the beyond.

The evil done causes twofold sorrow ―

Sorrow that is intense grief.

33 The merits I have made bring happiness,

Bring delight even though they were made

In solitude, long past or far away.

There is fruition which brings happiness.

Seeing that I myself possess white deeds

Brings happiness here and in the beyond.

The merits made bring twofold happiness ―

Happiness that is intense delight.

34 Like rotten ships sinking into the sea,

Death brings terror to those with evil deeds ―

Irreligious persons who spurned dharma,

Who have done evil and have made no merit.

35 Like a strong ship reaching the farther shore,

Death never brings terror to me

Who has made merit and done no evil,

And has done the dharma taught by the holy ones.

With this completes the chapter on EVIL.

 

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