Aŋguttara Nikāya


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Aŋguttara Nikāya
Catukka Nipāta
XXVI: Abhiññā Vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Fours
Chapter XXVI: Higher Knowledge

Sutta 259

Arañña-Senāsana Suttaɱ

Forest-Dwelling

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

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[256]

[1][than][olds] Thus have I heard:

On a certain occasion the Exalted One was staying near Sāvatthī.

Then the Exalted One addressed the monks, saying:

"Monks."

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

"Monks, if he possess four qualities
a monk is not fit
to resort to lonely spots
and solitary lodging in a forest.[1]

What four?

Sensual thoughts,
malicious thoughts,
harmful thoughts
[257] or if he be weak in wisdom,
dull-witted,
imbecile.[2]

These are the four qualities
of a monk not fit
to resort to lonely spots
and solitary lodging in a forest.

 

§

 

Monks, if he possess four qualities
a monk is fit
to resort to lonely spots
and solitary lodging in a forest.

What four?

Thoughts of renunciation,
thoughts not malicious,
harmless thoughts,
or if he be not dull-witted,
not an imbecile.

These are the four qualities of a monk
fit to resort to lonely spots
and solitary lodging in a forest.'

 


[1] A. i, 60.

[2] Eḷa-mūga, a doubtful word not yet satisfactorily explained (mūga). At M. i, 20 Comy. expl. as equal to mukha ('by change of kh to g'!), 'dribbling at the mouth.' Eḷa = lālā (saliva) and gives v.ll. -mūga, -mūka, -mukha. SA. on S. v, 99 expl. as 'a stutterer' (asampanna-vacano). AA. on A. iii, 436; DA. i, 290; A. iv, 226 (the same phrase as here) have no remarks. Childers has 'deaf and dumb,' followed by P.Dict.; but this meaning, as Rhys Davids remarks at Mil. Panh., Trans, ii, 71, 'has not yet been confirmed by a single passage either in Pali or Sanskrit,' and suggests 'as dumb as a sheep (eḍa)' or 'imbecile,' which I follow here. Perhaps our 'drivelling idiot' is the same word. Cf. aneḷa-gala (eḷa = doso) and neḷagga; UdA. 313, 369. Comy. on M. i, loc. cit., points out that such people would be too timorous for forest life.


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