Anguttara Nikaya


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Aŋguttaranikāyo
Catukkanipāto

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Fours

Sutta 192
Ṭhānāni Sutta

Conditions[1]

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

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[1][ati] 'Monks, these four conditions are to be understood by other four conditions.

What are the four?

Monks, it is by association
that one's virtue is to be understood,[2]
and that too after a long time, not casually;[3]
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom.

Monks, it is by living with him[4]
that a man's integrity is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom.

Monks, it is in time of distress
that a man's courage is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom.

Monks, it is by converse with him[5]
that a man's wisdom is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom.

 

§

 

[2][ati] Now I said:

"It is by association that one's virtue is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

Owing to what did I say thus?

[197] In this case, monks, a person knows thus of another person by associating with him:

For a long time this worthy has been one whose deeds are incongruous,
inconsistent,
shady and spotted.[6]

His deeds are not consistent,
his habits are not consistent with morals.

This worthy is immoral,
he is not virtuous.

Herein again, monks, by associating with him one knows thus of another person:

For a long time this worthy has been one whose deeds are congruous,
consistent,
not shady,
not spotted.

His deeds are consistent,
his habits are consistent with morals.

This worthy is moral,
he is virtuous.

Indeed, monks, it is by association that one's virtue is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

What is said thus was owing to this.

 

§

 

[3][ati] Now I said:

"It is by living with him that a man's integrity[7] is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

Owing to what did I say this?

In this case, monks, a person knows thus of another person by living with him:

This worthy, when with one person, behaves in one way;
when with two persons, in another way;
when with three, in yet another way;
again otherwise when with many.

In his former behaviour
he departs from his latter behaviour.

This worthy is not honest in his behaviour.

This worthy is dishonest.

In this case again, monks, a person knows another by living with him:

This worthy when with one person behaves just as he does with two,
three
or many.

In his former behaviour
he departs not from his latter behaviour.

This worthy is honest,
he is not dishonest.

Indeed, monks, it is by living with him that a man's integrity is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

What is said thus was owing to this.

 

§

 

[4][ati] Now I said:

"It is in time of distress that a man's courage[8] is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

Owing to what did I say this?

[198] In this case, monks, a certain one, afflicted by the loss of relatives or loss of wealth or by the misfortune of sickness, thus reflects:

Verily thus-come-to-be is this living in the world.

Thus-come-to-be is the getting of a personality.

According to this coming-to-be of living in the world
and getting a personality
eight world-conditions keep the world a-rolling
and the world keeps a-rolling eight world-conditions,
to wit: -
gain and loss,
disrepute and fame,
blame and praise,
happiness and unhappiness.

So he, afflicted by loss of relatives,
loss of wealth
or the misfortune of sickness,
sorrows,
laments,
is distressed
and knocks the breast,
wails
and falls into utter bewilderment.

But in this case, monks,
a certain one,
afflicted by the loss of relatives or loss of wealth or by the misfortune of sickness, thus reflects:

Verily thus-come-to-be is this living in the world.

Thus-come-to-be is the getting of a personality.

According to this coming-to-be of living in the world
and getting a personality
eight world-conditions keep the world a-rolling
and the world keeps a-rolling eight world-conditions,
to wit: -
gain and loss,
disrepute and fame,
blame and praise,
happiness and unhappiness.

He, afflicted by the loss of relatives,
loss of wealth
or the misfortune of sickness,
does not sorrow,
does not falter,[ed1]
. . .
nor falls into utter bewilderment.

Owing to that did I say this.

 

§

 

[5][ati] Now I said:

"It is by converse with him
that a man's wisdom is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

Owing to what did I say this?

In this case, monks, a person by conversing with another knows thus of him:

Judging by this worthy's approach to a question,[9]
judging by his intention,
judging by his conversation,[10]
he is weak in wisdom,
he is not wise.

What is the cause of that?

In the case in question this worthy utters no profound profitable sentence[11] that calms,
is sublime,
is beyond the sphere of mere reasoning,[12]
that is subtle and intelligible to the wise.

As to Dhamma that this worthy talks,
he is not [199] competent,
either in brief or in detail,
to explain its meaning,
to show it forth,
expound it,
lay it down,
open it up,
analyse and make it plain.

This worthy is weak in wisdom,
he is not wise.

Just as if, monks,
a man with good eyesight,
standing on the bank of a pool of water,
were to see a small fish rising,
he would think:

Judging by the uprise of this fish,
judging by the size of the ripple it makes,
judging by its speed,
this is a small fish;
this is not a big fish; -
just in the same way, monks,
a person by conversing with another knows thus of him:

udging by this worthy's approach to a question,
judging by his intention,
judging by his conversation,
he is weak in wisdom,
he is not wise.

What is the cause of that?

In the case in question this worthy utters no profound profitable sentence that calms,
is sublime,
is beyond the sphere of mere reasoning,
that is subtle and intelligible to the wise.

As to Dhamma that this worthy talks,
he is not competent,
either in brief or in detail,
to explain its meaning,
to show it forth,
expound it,
lay it down,
open it up,
analyse and make it plain.

This worthy is weak in wisdom,
he is not wise.

Herein again, monks, a person by conversing with another knows thus of him:

Judging by this worthy's approach to a question,
judging by his intention,
judging by his conversation,
he is a wise man,
he is not weak in wisdom.[3]

What is the cause of that?

In the case in question
this worthy can utter a profound, profitable sentence, that calms,
that is sublime,
is beyond the sphere of mere reasoning,
that is subtle and intelligible to the wise.

As to Dhamma that this worthy talks,
he is competent,
both in brief and in detail,
to explain its meaning,
to show it forth,
expound it,
lay it down,
open it up,
analyse and make it plain.

This worthy is a wise man,
he is not weak in wisdom.

Just as if, monks, a man with good eyesight,
standing on the bank of a pool of water,
were to see a big fish rising,
he would think:

Judging by the uprise of this fish,
judging by the size of the ripple it makes,
judging by its speed,
this is a big fish;
this is not a small fish: -
just in the same way, monks, a person,
by conversing with another,
knows thus of him:

judging by this worthy's approach to a question,
judging by his intention,
judging by his conversation,
he is a wise man,
he is not weak in wisdom.

It is by converse with him, monks, that a man's wisdom is to be understood,
and that too after a long time, not casually;
by close attention, not by inattention;
by a wise man, not by one weak in wisdom."

So I said, and that is why I said it.

Thus, monks, these four conditions are to be understood by these other four conditions.'

 


[1] Ṭhānāni, lit. places.

[2] As at S. i, 78 and Ud. vi, 2; UdA. 332, where the rājah Pasenadi is instructed how to know an arahant.

[3] Na ittaraɱ.

[4] Saŋvohārena. Ud. has sabbyohārena(?).

[5] Sākacchāya.

[6] Khaṇḍa-kārī, chidda-kārī, sabala-kārī, kammasa-kārī, referring to the oft-quoted words about sīla - e.g., D. ii, 80 (sīlāni akhaṇḍāni, acchiddāni, asabalāni, akammasāni); cf. DA. ii, 536 for defs. The metaphor is from first a garment torn all round, then perforated; next of cattle, variegated; lastly, dappled or blotched. Comy., infra, Ī 243.

[7] Soceyyaɱ = suci-bhava. Comy.

[8] Thāmo.

[9] Ummaggo, see n. above on Ī 186. Here the word has the double meaning of 'approach to a question' and 'the rise' of a fish. As quoted above, SnA. 50, the four bases of enlightenment are called ussāha, ummagga, avatthānaɱ, hitacariyā.

[10] Texts samudācāro, but Comy., perhaps bettor, samudāhāro ( = pañhapucchanaɱ), acc. to which I translate.

[11] Attha-padaɱ. Cf. A. iii, 356. This seems to be the meaning at Dhp. v. 100, ekaɱ atthapadaɱ seyyo, yaɱ sutvā upasammati.

[12] Atakkāvacaraɱ. Cf. S. i, 136, adhigato myāyaɱ dhammo gambhīro duddaso duranubodho santo paṇīto atakkāvacaro nipuṇo paṇḍita-vedanīyo. (Comy. yathā takkena nayaggāhena gahetuɱ, but should prefix na.)

[13] Here and below text gives the opposite meaning by transposing paññavā and duppañño.

 


[ed1] Here Woodward changed his vocabulary which would have otherwise been expected to be:

does not lament,
is not distressed
does not knock the breast,
does not wails
nor fall into utter bewilderment.


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