Anguttara Nikaya


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Aŋguttaranikāyo
Catukkanipāto
XX: Mahā Vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Fours
Chapter XX: The Great Chapter

Sutta 197

Mallikā Suttaṃ

Mallikā

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

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

On a certain occasion the Exalted One was staying near Sāvatthī, at Jeta Grove in Anāthapndika's Park.

Now [215] Mallikā the queen[1]
came to visit the Exalted One,
and on coming to him
saluted the Exalted One
and sat down at one side.

As she sat thus
Mallikā the queen
said this to the Exalted One:

"Pray, lord, what is the reason,
what is the cause
why in this world
some women-folk are ill-favoured,
deformed,
of a mean appearance,
and are poor,
having little of their own,
of small possessions
and are of small account?[2]

Again, lord, pray what is the reason,
what is the cause
why in this world
some women-folk are ill-favoured,
deformed,
of a mean appearance,
but yet are wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions
and of great account?

Again, lord, pray what is the reason,
what is the cause
why in this world
some women-folk are well-favoured,
well-formed,
lovely to look upon,
amiable,
possessed of the greatest beauty of complexion,
and yet are poor,
having little of their own,
of small possessions
and are of small account?

And yet again, lord, pray what is the reason,
what is the cause
why in this world
some women-folk are well-favoured,
well-formed,
lovely to look upon,
amiable,
possessed of the greatest beauty of complexion,
and are moreover wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions
and of great account?"

"In this case, Mallikā, a certain woman
is ill-tempered,
of a very irritable nature.[3]

On very little provocation
she becomes cross and agitated.

She is upset and becomes stubborn,
she shows temper
and ill-will
and displeasure.

She is no giver of charity
to recluse or brahmin,
nor gives food,
drink,
clothing,
vehicle,
flower,
scent,
ointment,
bed,
lodging
or light.

Moreover, she is jealous-minded,[4]
she is jealous of [216] other folk's gain,
of the honour,
respect,
reverence,
homage
and worship paid to them.

She is revengeful1
and harbours a grudge.

Such an one, if, deceasing from that life,
she comes back to this state of things,
wherever she is reborn,
is ill-favoured,
ill-formed,
of a mean appearance
and poor,
having little of her own,
of small possessions,
and is of small account.

Herein again (in the second case), Mallikā,
a certain woman
is ill-tempered,
of a very irritable nature.

On very little provocation
she becomes cross and agitated.

She is upset and becomes stubborn,
she shows temper
and ill-will
and displeasure.

But she is a giver of charity
to recluse or brahmin,
she gives food,
drink,
clothing,
vehicle,
flower,
scent,
ointment,
bed,
lodging
or light.

However, she is not jealous-minded,
she is not jealous
of other folk's gain,
of the honour,
respect,
reverence,
homage
and worship
paid to them.

She is not revengeful,
nor does she harbour a grudge.

Such an one, if, on deceasing from that life,
she comes back to this state of things,
wherever she is reborn,
is ill-favoured,
ill-formed,
of a mean appearance;
but she is wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions
and is of great account.

Herein again (in the third case), Mallikā,
a certain woman
is not ill-tempered,
not of a very irritable nature.

Even on great provocation
she becomes not cross
and agitated.

She is not upset,
does not become stubborn,
does not show temper,
ill-will
and displeasure.

Yet she is no giver of charity
to recluse and brahmin
nor gives food,
drink,
clothing,
vehicle,
flower,
scent,
ointment,
bed,
lodging
or light.

But she is jealous-minded.

She is jealous of other folk's gain,
of the honour,
respect,
reverence,
homage
and worship
paid to them.

She is revengeful
and harbours a grudge.

Such an one, if, deceasing from that life,
she comes back to this state of things,
wherever she is reborn,
is well-favoured,
well-formed,
lovely to look upon,
amiable,
possessed of the greatest beauty of complexion.

But she is poor,
having little of her own,
of small possessions
and is of little account.

Herein again (in the fourth case), Mallikā,
a certain woman is neither ill-tempered
nor of a very irritable nature.

Even on great provocation
she becomes not cross and agitated.

She [217] is not upset,
does not become stubborn,
does not show ill-will
and displeasure.

Moreover, she is a giver of charity
to recluse and brahmin.

She gives one food,
drink,
clothing,
vehicle,
flowers,
scent,
ointment,
bed,
lodging
and light.

She is not jealous-minded,
she is not jealous of other folk's gain,
of the honour,
respect,
reverence,
homage
and worship
paid to them.

She is not revengeful
nor does she harbour a grudge.

Such an one, deceasing from that life
and coming back to this state of things,
wherever she is born,
is well-favoured,
well-formed,
lovely to look upon,
amiable,
possessed of the greatest beauty of complexion.

She is wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions
and is of great account.

Now, Mallikā, these are the reasons and causes
why in this world
some women-folk are ill-favoured,
deformed,
of a mean appearance,
and are poor,
having little of their own,
of small possessions
and are of small account;

these are the reasons and causes
why in this world
some women-folk are ill-favoured,
deformed,
of a mean appearance,
but yet are wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions
and of great account;

these are the reasons and causes
why in this world
why in this world
some women-folk are well-favoured,
well-formed,
lovely to look upon,
amiable,
possessed of the greatest beauty of complexion,
and yet are poor,
having little of their own,
of small possessions
and are of small account;

these are the reasons and causes
why in this world
why in this world
some women-folk are well-favoured,
well-formed,
lovely to look upon,
amiable,
possessed of the greatest beauty of complexion,
and are moreover wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions
and of great account."

At these words
queen Mallikā said this
to the Exalted One:

'Suppose, lord, that I
in another birth
was ill-tempered and of an irritable nature,
becoming cross and agitated
even on slight provocation;
that I became upset thereat and stubborn,
showed ill-will and displeasure.

That same I
(might now be) ill-favoured,
ill-formed
and of mean appearance.

Suppose, lord, that in another birth
I gave gifts of charity
to recluse and brahmin
food,
drink,
clothing,
vehicle,
flowers,
scent,
ointment,
bed,
lodging
and light,
that same I
now might be wealthy,
of great riches,
of great possessions.

Suppose, lord, that in another birth
I was not jealous-minded,
I was not jealous of other folk's gain,
nor of the honour,
respect,
reverence,
homage
and worship paid to them.

I was not revengeful
nor did I harbour a grudge.

That same I
am now of great account.

Now again, lord, in this rajah's family
there are maids of the nobles,
maids of the brahmins
and of the householders too.

Over them I hold supremacy.

Lord, from this day forth
I will indeed become good-tempered,
not irritable.

Even on great provocation
I will not become upset nor stubborn.

I will not show ill-will
nor displeasure.

I will give to recluse and brahmin
food,
drink,
clothing,
vehicle,
flowers,
scent,
ointment,
bed,
lodging
and light.

I will not become jealous-minded.

I will not be jealous of [218] other folk's gain,
nor of the honour,
respect,
reverence,
homage
and worship
paid to them.

I will not be revengeful
nor will I harbour a grudge.

It is wonderful, lord!

It is marvellous, lord!

Just as if, lord,
one should raise the fallen
or show forth the hidden,
or point the way
to him that wanders astray,
or hold up a light in the darkness
so that they who have eyes may behold objects,-
even so in divers ways
has dhamma been set forth by the worthy Gotama.[ed1]

I do go for refuge to the worthy Gotama!

Lord, may the Exalted One accept me
as a woman disciple
from this day forth
so long as life may last,
as one who has gone to him for refuge.'

 


[1] Cf. Ud. v, 1. Acc. to the legend she was a poor flower-girl who gave her only cake to the Buddha as his first meal for the day. The immediate fruit of this gift was, acc. to the Buddha's prophecy, that she became that very day the queen of the rajah Pasenadi. She was plain-looking.

[2] Appesakkho (mātugāmo is masc.). Sinh. text and Comy. have the adj. feminine throughout. Comy. 'of small retinue.'

[3] Upāyāsa- bahulo.Text issamānikā; Comy. and Sinh. text issāmanikā, = issāy sampayutta-cittā. Comy.

[4] Upadussati. So Childers (not in A. index or P.Dict.).

 


[ed1] This paragraph omitted by Woodward. It is in the BJT Pali, but it is unclear from the way the PTS and CSCD have abridged whether or not it should be included.


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