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Saɱyutta Nikāya:
IV. Saḷāyatana Vagga
35: Saḷāyatana Saɱyutta
Paññāsaɱ Catutthaɱ
4. Āsīvisa Vagga

Sutta 200

Daruka-khandha Sutta

The Log

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
Provenance, terms and conditons

 


 

[1][pts][bodh] On one occasion the Blessed One was staying at Ajjheya on the bank of the river Ganges. He saw a large log being carried along by the current near the bank of the river Ganges, and on seeing it said to the monks: "Monks, do you see that large log being carried along by the current of the river Ganges?"

"Yes, lord."

"Monks, if that log doesn't veer toward the near shore, doesn't veer toward the far shore, doesn't sink in the middle, doesn't get washed up on high ground, doesn't get snared by human beings, doesn't get snared by non-human beings, doesn't get snared in a whirlpool, and doesn't become rotten inside, it will tend to the ocean, tilt to the ocean, incline to the ocean. Why is that? Because the current of the river Ganges tends to the ocean, tilts to the ocean, inclines to the ocean.

"In the same way, monks, if you don't veer toward the near shore, don't veer toward the far shore, don't sink in the middle, don't get washed up on high ground, don't get snared by human beings, don't get snared by non-human beings, don't get snared in a whirlpool, and don't become rotten inside, you will tend to Unbinding, tilt to Unbinding, incline to Unbinding. Why is that? Because right view tends to Unbinding, tilts to Unbinding, inclines to Unbinding."

When this was said, a certain monk addressed the Blessed One: "What, lord, is the near shore? What is the far shore? What is sinking in the middle? What is being washed up on high ground? What is being snared by human beings? What is being snared by non-human beings? What is being snared by a whirlpool? What is becoming rotten inside?"

"'The near shore,' monks, stands for the six internal sense media. 'The far shore' stands for the six external sense media. 'Sinking in the middle' stands for passion and delight. 'Being washed up on high ground' stands for the conceit, 'I am.'

"And what, monks, is being snared by human beings? There is the case where a monk lives entangled with householders, delighting with them and sorrowing with them, happy when they are happy, pained when they are in pain, taking on their affairs as his own duty. This is called being snared by human beings.

"And what, monks, is being snared by non-human beings? There is the case where a certain monk lives the holy life in hopes of a certain company of devas, [thinking,] 'By means of this virtue or practice or austerity or holy life I will become one sort of deva or another.' This is called being snared by non-human beings.

"'Being snared by a whirlpool' stands for the five strings of sensuality.

"And what, monks, is becoming rotten inside? There is the case where a certain monk is unprincipled, evil, unclean and suspect in his undertakings, hidden in his actions, not a contemplative though claiming to be one, not leading the holy life though claiming to do so, inwardly rotten, oozing with desire, filthy by nature. This is called becoming rotten inside."

Now at that time Nanda the cowherd was standing not far from the Blessed One. Then he said to the Blessed One, "Lord, I don't veer toward the near shore, I don't veer toward the far shore, I won't sink in the middle, I won't get washed up on high ground, I won't get snared by human beings, I won't get snared by non-human beings, I won't get snared in a whirlpool, and I won't become rotten inside. It would be good, lord, if I could obtain the Going-forth, if I could obtain the Full Acceptance (as a monk).

"In that case, Nanda, lead the cows back to their owners."

"The cows will go back, lord, out of attachment for their calves."

"Lead the cows back to their owners, Nanda."

Then, having led the cows back to their owners, Nanda the cowherd went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, told him, "The cows, lord, have been led back to their owners. Let me obtain the Going-forth in the Blessed One's presence! Let me obtain the Full Acceptance!"

So Nanda the cowherd obtained the Going-forth in the Blessed One's presence, he obtained the Full Acceptance. And not long after his Acceptance — dwelling alone, secluded, heedful, ardent, and resolute — he in no long time reached and remained in the supreme goal of the holy life, for which clansmen rightly go forth from home into homelessness, knowing and realizing it for himself in the here and now. He knew: "Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for the sake of this world." And thus Ven. Nanda became another one of the arahants.

 


 

See also:
Iti 109

 


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