Khuddaka Nikaya


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Theragatha
Chapter III — The Threes

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

 


 

III.2[idx] — Uttama

Four times, five, I ran amok from my dwelling,
    having gained no peace of awareness,
    my thoughts out of control.
So I went to a trustworthy nun.
She taught me the Dhamma:
    aggregates, sense spheres, and elements.
Hearing the Dhamma,
    I did as she said.
For seven days I sat in one spot,
absorbed in rapture and bliss.
On the eighth, I stretched out my legs,
    having burst the mass
    of darkness.

 

§

 

III.4[idx] — Dantika and the Elephant

Coming out from my day's abiding
on Vulture Peak Mountain,
I saw on the bank of a river
    an elephant
emerged from its plunge.

A man holding a hook requested:
        "Give me your foot."
The elephant
    extended its foot.
The man
    got up on the elephant.

Seeing what was untrained now tamed
brought under human control,
with that I centered my mind —
    why I'd gone to the woods
        in the first place.

 

§

 

III.5[idx] — Ubbiri

"'Jiva, my daughter,'
you cry in the woods.
Come to your senses, Ubbiri.
        84,000
    all named Jiva
have been burned in that charnel ground.
For which of them do you grieve?"

Pulling out
    — completely out —
the arrow so hard to see,
embedded in my heart,
he expelled from me
    — overcome with grief —
the grief
over my daughter.

Today — with arrow removed,
    without hunger, entirely
        Unbound —
to the Buddha, Dhamma, and Sangha I go,
    for refuge to
    the Sage.

 


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