Khuddaka Nikaya


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Sutta Nipata
5
Sutta 7. Nanda-manava-puccha Sutta

[pali] [faus]

Nanda's Questions

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
For free distribution only.

 


 

Nanda:

There are in the world
sages, they say
    -- in what way?
Do they call one a sage
for possessing knowledge
or possessing a way of life?

The Buddha:

Not on account of his views,
    learning,
    or knowledge
do the skilled here, Nanda,
        call one a sage.
Those who live
    disarmed,
    undesiring,
    untroubled:
        those, I say, are called sages.

Nanda:

Whatever priests and contemplatives
    describe purity
        in terms of views and learning,
    describe purity
        in terms of precepts and practices,
    describe purity
        in terms of manifold ways:
have they, dear sir, living there in that way,
crossed over birth and aging?
    I ask you, O Blessed One.
    Please tell me.

The Buddha:

Whatever priests and contemplatives
    describe purity
        in terms of views and learning,
    describe purity
        in terms of precepts and practices,
    describe purity
        in terms of manifold ways:
none of them, living there in that way,
I tell you, have crossed over birth and aging.

Nanda:

Whatever priests and contemplatives
    describe purity
        in terms of views and learning,
    describe purity
        in terms of precepts and practices,
    describe purity
        in terms of manifold ways:
if, sage, as you say,
they've not crossed over the flood,
then who in the world
of beings divine and human
has crossed over birth and aging?
    I ask you, O Blessed One.
    Please tell me.

The Buddha:

I don't say that all priests and contemplatives
are shrouded in birth and aging.
Those here who've abandoned
    what's seen, heard, and sensed,
    precepts and practices [1]
        -- all --
who've abandoned their manifold ways
        -- again, all --
who, comprehending craving,
    are effluent-free:
they are the ones, I tell you,
who've crossed over the flood.

Nanda:

I relish, Gotama, the Great Seer's words
well-expounded, without acquisition.
Those here who've abandoned
    what's seen, heard, and sensed,
    precepts and practices
        -- all --
who've abandoned their manifold ways
        -- again, all --
who, comprehending craving,
    are effluent-free:
I, too, say they've crossed over the flood.

 


[1] For a discussion of the abandoning of precepts and practices, see The Mind Like Fire Unbound, Chapters 3 and 4.

 


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