Anguttara Nikaya


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Aŋguttaranikāyo
Catukkanipāto
IX: M-acala Vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Fours Chapter IX: Unshaken

Sutta 85

Tamotamaparāyana Suttaɱ

Darkness[1]

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

Copyright The Pali Text Society
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[1][than] Thus have I heard:

On a certain occasion the Exalted One addressed the monks, saying:

"Monks."

"Yes, lord," they replied, and the Exalted One said:

'Monks, these four persons are found existing in the world.

What four?

He who is in darkness
and bound for darkness;
he who is in darkness
but bound for light;
he who is in light
but bound for darkness;
he who is in light
and bound for light.

And how, monks, is a person
in darkness
bound for darkness?

In this case a certain person[2] is born in a low family,
the family of a scavenger
or a hunter
or a basket-weaver
or wheelwright
or sweeper,[3]
or in the family of some wretched man
hard put to it
to find a meal
or earn a living,
where food and clothes
are hard to get.

Moreover, he is ill-favoured,
ugly,
dwarfish,
sickly,
purblind,
crooked,
lame
or paralysed,
with never a bite or sup,
without clothes,
vehicle,
without perfumes
or flower-garlands,
bed,
dwelling
or lights.

He lives in the practice of evil
with body,
speech
and thought;
and so doing,
when body breaks up,
after death,
he is reborn in the waste,
the [95] way of woe,
the downfall,
in purgatory.

Thus, monks, is the person
who is in darkness
and bound for darkness.

And how, monks, is a person
in darkness
but bound for light?

In this case a certain person is born in a low family,
the family of a scavenger
or a hunter
or a basket-weaver
or wheelwright
or sweeper,
or in the family of some wretched man
hard put to it
to find a meal
or earn a living,
where food and clothes
are hard to get.

Moreover, he is ill-favoured,
ugly,
dwarfish,
sickly,
purblind,
crooked,
lame
or paralysed,
with never a bite or sup,
without clothes,
vehicle,
without perfumes
or flower-garlands,
bed,
dwelling
or lights.

He lives in the practice
of good with body,
speech
and thought
and so doing,
when body breaks up,
after death
he is reborn in the happy bourn,
in the heaven-world.

And how, monks, is a person
in light
but bound for darkness?

In this case a certain person
is born in a high family,
a family of wealthy nobles
or a family of wealthy brahmins
or of wealthy householders,
in a family that is rich,
exceeding rich,
of great possessions,
with the support of abounding wealth,
in a family that abounds in wealth of crops.

And that man is well-built,
comely
and charming,
possessed of supreme beauty of form.

He is one able to get clothes,
vehicle,
perfumes
and ffower-garlands,
bed,
dwelling
and lights.

But he lives in the practice
of evil with body,
speech
and thought;
and so doing,
when body breaks up,
after death,
he is reborn in the waste,
the way of woe,
the downfall,
in purgatory.

Thus, monks, is the person
who is in light
but bound for darkness.

And how, monks, is a person
who is in light
and bound for light?

In this case a person is born in a high family,
a family of wealthy nobles
or a family of wealthy brahmins
or of wealthy householders,
in a family that is rich,
exceeding rich,
of great possessions,
with the support of abounding wealth,
in a family that abounds in wealth of crops.

And that man is well-built,
comely
and charming,
possessed of supreme beauty of form.

He is one able to get clothes,
vehicle,
perfumes
and ffower-garlands,
bed,
dwelling
and lights.

He lives in the practice
of good with body,
speech
and thought
and so doing,
when body breaks up,
after death
he is reborn in the happy bourn,
in the heaven-world.

Thus, monks, is one
who is in light
and bound for light.

These, monks, are the four persons found existing in the world.'[4]

 


[1] As at Pugg. 51 (Types, 70-1), but without the address 'monks.' At S. i, 93 = K.S. i, 118 it is addressed to Pasenadi, rājah of Kosala, and a number of gāthās are added. The framework is quoted at Netti, 153.

[2] cf. A. i, 107 = G.S. i, 92.

[3] Pukhusa, originally one of a despised tribe of this name. Cf. Dial. ii, 141 n. Comy. explains 'those who sweep up flowers,' which are offered at shrines and are never removed by the devotees themselves. For the others cf Dial. i, 100, 'aboriginal tribesmen who were hereditary craftsmen in these three crafts.'

[4] The sutta at S. i, 94 adds a simile to each character.


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