Anguttara Nikaya


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Aŋguttara Nikāya
4. Catukka Nipāta
VI. Puññābhisanda Vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Fours
VI: Flood of Merit

Paṭhama Puññābhisanda Suttaṃ

Sutta 51

Flood of Merit (to Laymen) (a)

Translated from the Pali by F. L. Woodward, M.A.

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[54] [63]

[1][bodh] THUS have I heard:

Once the Exalted One was staying near Sāvatthī,[1]
at Jeta Grove,
in Anāthapiṇḍika's Park.

Then the Exalted One addressed the monks, saying:

'Monks.'

'Yes, lord,' replied those monks to the Exalted One.

The Exalted One said:

'Monks, there are these four floods of merit,
floods of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,[2]
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness.

What are the four?

To him, monks, who is the giver of the robe,
using which
a monk is able to attain and abide in unbounded concentration [64] of mind,
to him comes a flood of merit,
a flood of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness.

To him, monks, who is the giver of alms-food,
using which
a monk is able to attain and abide in unbounded concentration of mind,
to him comes a flood of merit,
a flood of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness.

To him, monks, who is the giver of lodging,
using which
a monk is able to attain and abide in unbounded concentration of mind,
to him comes a flood of merit,
a flood of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness.

To him, monks, who is the giver of requisites and medicines for use in sickness,
using which
a monk is able to attain and abide in unbounded concentration of mind,
to him comes a flood of merit,
a flood of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness.

Moreover, monks, if an Ariyan disciple be possessed of these four floods of merit,
floods of things profitable,
it is no easy thing to take the measure of his merit, (so as to say): -

"Such and such is the extent
of the flood of merit,
a flood of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness."

nay, it is to be reckoned as an incalculable,
immeasurable,
mighty mass of merit.

Just as, monks, it is no easy thing to take the measure of the water[3] in the mighty ocean, (so as to say): -

"So many gallons of water,
so many hundred,
so many thousand,
so many hundreds of thousands of gallons of water" -

nay, it is to be reckoned as an incalculable,
immeasurable,
mighty mass of water.

Even so, monks, if an Ariyan disciple be possessed of these four floods of merit,
floods of things profitable,
it is no easy thing to take the measure of his merit, (so as to say): -

"Such and such is the extent
of the flood of merit,
a flood of things profitable,
bringing happiness,
giving the best things,
whose fruit is happiness,
leading to the heaven world,
leading to what is dear,
delightful
and pleasant,
to profit
and happiness."

nay, it is to be reckoned as an incalculable,
immeasurable,
mighty mass of merit.

To boundless mighty ocean, mighty pool,
Fearsome, the resting-place of divers gems,
As rivers bearing multitudes of men[4]
Flow broadly down and to that ocean come;
Just so to him that giveth food, drink, clothes,
Who bed and seat and coverlet provides,
Torrents of merit flood that mortal wise,
As rivers, bearing water, reach the main.'[5]

 


[1] This sutta is the only one in this volume so derived. Cf. S. v, 391, 400 (also a Sāvatthī-n.)= K.S. v, 336, 343; it is also quoted at Pts. of Contr. 202 (KV. 345). At A. iv, 245 [AN 8.39 Hare] eight such floods are given. For the teim see DA. i, 303. It occurs at A. iii, 51 as a Five.

[2] Sovaggika = suṭṭhu aggānaṃ rūpādīnaṃ dāyakā. Comy. It is generally taken as 'belonging to heaven.'

[3] Cf. K.S. iv, 267.

[4] A. iii, 52 reads maccha-.

[5] Gāthas at S. v, 400 = K.S. v, 267.


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