Khuddaka Nikaya


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Dhammapada

The Path of Dhamma

XVIII. Malavagga: Impurity (235-255)

By Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
For free distribution only.

 


 

[235] You are now
like a yellowed leaf.
Already
Yama's minions stand near.
You stand at the door to departure
but have yet to provide
for the journey.

[236] Make an island for yourself!
Work quickly! Be wise!
With impurities all blown away,
unblemished,
you'll reach the divine realm
of the noble ones.

[237] You are now
right at the end of your time.
You are headed
to Yama's presence,
with no place to rest along the way,
but have yet to provide
for the journey.

[238] Make an island for yourself!
Work quickly! Be wise!
With impurities all blown away,
unblemished,
you won't again undergo birth
and aging.

[239] Just as a silver smith
step by
step,
bit by
bit,
moment to
moment,
blows away the impurities
of molten silver --
so the wise man, his own.

[240] Just as rust
-- iron's impurity --
eats the very iron
from which it is born,
so the deeds
of one who lives slovenly
lead him on
to a bad destination.

[241] No recitation: the ruinous impurity
of chants.
No initiative: of a household.
Indolence: of beauty.
Heedlessness: of a guard.

[242] In a woman, misconduct is an impurity.
In a donor, stinginess.
Evil deeds are the real impurities
in this world and the next.

[243] More impure than these impurities
is the ultimate impurity:
ignorance.
Having abandoned this impurity,
monks, you're impurity-free.

[244-245] Life's easy to live
for someone unscrupulous,
cunning as a crow,
corrupt, back-biting,
forward, and brash;
but for someone who's constantly
scrupulous, cautious,
observant, sincere,
pure in his livelihood,
clean in his pursuits,
it's hard.

[246-247] Whoever kills, lies, steals,
goes to someone else's wife,
and is addicted to intoxicants,
digs himself up
by the root
right here in this world.

[248] So know, my good man,
that bad deeds are reckless.
Don't let greed and unrighteousness
oppress you with long-term pain.

[249] People give
in line with their faith,
in line with conviction.
Whoever gets flustered
at food and drink given to others,
attains no concentration
by day or by night.

[250] But one in whom this is
cut through
up-rooted
wiped out --
attains concentration
by day or by night.

[251] There's no fire like passion,
no seizure like anger,
no snare like delusion,
no river like craving.

[252] It's easy to see
the errors of others,
but hard to see
your own.
You winnow like chaff
the errors of others,
but conceal your own --
like a cheat, an unlucky throw.

[253] If you focus on the errors of others,
constantly finding fault,
your effluents flourish.
You're far from their ending.

[254] There's no trail in space,
no outside contemplative.
People are smitten
with complications,
but devoid of complication are
the Tathagatas.

[255] There's no trail in space,
no outside contemplative,
no eternal fabrications,
no wavering in the Awakened.

 


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