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 86

Oṇatoṇata Suttaɱ

Of Low Estate[1]

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

Copyright The Pali Text Society
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[1] 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 low and low;
he who is low[ed1] and high;
he who is high and low,
and he who is high and high.'.

And how, monks, is a person
low and low?
[ed2]

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 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
low and low.

And how, monks, is a person
low and high?

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.

Thus, monks, is the person
low and high.

And how, monks, is a person
high and low?

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
high and low.

And how, monks, is a person
high and high?

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
high and high.

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

 


[1] This sutta also is at Pugg. 52 and in brief at Pugg. 7. Comy. explains that in each case it is meant that he is such and such, but may or will become such and such.

 


[ed1] Woodward has 'high'.

[ed2] The PTS Pali and translation omit the entire italicized and indented sections. It appears in full in BJT, abridged in CSCD, and abridged by Bhk. Bodhi.


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