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Aŋguttara Nikāya
Chakkanipata
VI. Mahā Vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Sixes
Chapter VI: The Great Chapter

Sutta 60

Hatthisāriputta Suttaṃ

Citta Hatthisāriputta[1]

Translated from the Pali by E.M. Hare.

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[1] Thus have I heard:

Once, when the Exalted One dwelt near Benares
in the Deer Park at Isipatana,
a number of elders,
[280] who had returned from alms-gathering, and fed,
sat together in the round hall
and talked a talk on Abhidhamma.[ed1]

Now from time to time the venerable Citta Hatthisariputta
broke in on their talk.

And the venerable Mahā Koṭṭhita said to him:

'Let not the venerable Citta Hatthisāriputta
constantly interrupt the elders' Abhidhamma talk;
the venerable Citta should wait
until the talk is over!'

And when he had thus spoken,
Citta's friends said:

'The venerable Mahā Koṭṭhita
should not censure the venerable Citta Hatthisāriputta.

A wise man is the venerable Citta
and able to talk to the elders on Abhidhamma.'

'Tis a hard thing,[2] sirs,
for those who know not
another person's ways of thought.

Consider, sirs, a person who,
so long as he lives near the Master
or a fellow-teacher in the godly life,
is the most humble[3] of the humble,
the meekest of the meek,
the quietest of the quiet;
and who,
when he leaves the Master
or his fellow-teachers,
keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters[4]
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Suppose, sirs, an ox,
a meadow-browser,
were kept tied by a rope
or closed in a byre -
would he say rightly,
who should say:

"Never now will that meadow-browser
venture again to a meadow"?'[5]

'No, indeed, sir,
such a thing does not happen,
since that ox,
used to browsing in meadows,
would, on snapping its rope
or breaking out of the byre,
venture down to the meadow again.'

'It is even so, sirs, where a person -
so long as he is near the Master
or a fellow-teacher -
is the most humble of the humble,
the meekest of the meek,
the quietest of the quiet;
but who, on leaving the Master
or his fellow-teachers,
keeps company [281] with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Consider again a person who,
aloof from sensuous appetites,
aloof from evil ideas,
enters and abides in the first musing.

Thinking:

"I've won to the first musing,"

he keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Suppose, sirs, the rain-deva
rains heavy rains
at the four cross-roads,
lays the dust
and makes mud -
would he say rightly,
who should say:

"Never now will dust again appear
at these four cross-roads"?

'No, indeed, sir,
since along those four cross-roads
men,
oxen
and cows
might pass
or the wind and heat might dry up the moisture;
and then the dust would appear again.'

'It is even so, sirs,
where a person who,
aloof from sensuous appetites,
aloof from evil ideas,
enters and abides in the first musing
thinking:

"I've won to the first musing,"

keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Then consider a person who,
suppressing applied and sustained thought,
enters and abides in the second musing,
which is self-evolved,
born of concentration,
full of joy and ease.

Thinking:

"I've won to the second musing,"

he keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Suppose, sirs,[6]
a great lake near some village or town
and the rain-deva were to rain great rains
and cover the mussels
and shells
and sand
and pebbles -
would he say rightly,
who should say:

"Never now in this great lake
shall the mussels,
shells,
sand
and pebbles
appear again"?'

'No, indeed, sir,
since men,
oxen
and cows might come
and drink from the great lake
or wind and heat dry up the moisture;
and then the mussels,
shells,
sand
and pebbles would appear again.'

'It is even so, sirs,
where a person who,
suppressing applied and sustained thought,
enters and abides in the second musing,
which is self-evolved,
born of concentration,
full of joy and ease,
thinking:

"I've won to the second musing,"

keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Consider then the person who,
free from the fervour of zest,
mindful and self-possessed,
he enters and abides in the third musing,
and experiences in his being
that ease whereof the Ariyans declare:
'He that is tranquil and mindful dwells at ease.

Thinking:

"I've won to the third musing,"

he keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Suppose, sirs, last[7] night's food
please [282] not a man
filled with good food -
would he say rightly,
who should say:

"Never now shall food please this man again"?

'No, indeed, sir,
that is not the case;
so long as the strength
of the good food remain in his body,
other food shall not please that man;
but when that strength has gone,
then shall food please him.'

'It is even so, sirs,
where a person who,
free from the fervour of zest,
mindful and self-possessed,
he enters and abides in the third musing,
and experiences in his being
that ease whereof the Ariyans declare:
'He that is tranquil and mindful dwells at ease,
thinking:

"I've won to the third musing,"

keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Consider the person who,
putting away ease and ill,
by the passing away of happiness and misery
he was wont to feel,
he enters and abides in the fourth musing,
which is utter purity of mindfulness,
which comes of disinterestedness
and is free of ease and ill.

Thinking:

"I've won to the fourth musing,"

he keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Imagine,[8] sirs,
a mere in a mountain glen,
windless,
waveless -
would he say rightly,
who should say:

"Never now on this mere
shall waves appear again"?

'No, indeed, sir,
since were a squall to come very strongly from the east,
it would bring waves to the mere;
since were a squall to come very strongly from the west,
it would bring waves to the mere;
since were a squall to come very strongly from the north,
it would bring waves to the mere;
since were a squall to come very strongly from the south,
it would bring waves to the mere.'

'It is even so, sirs, where a person who,
putting away ease and ill,
by the passing away of happiness and misery
he was wont to feel,
he enters and abides in the fourth musing,
which is utter purity of mindfulness,
which comes of disinterestedness
and is free of ease and ill,
thinking:

"I've won to the third musing,"

keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

And consider the person who,
paying no attention to the signs in things,
enters and abides
in the signless mental concentration.

Thinking:

"I have won to the signless mental concentration,"

he keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

Suppose, sirs, a rajah
or his minister
with the four hosts of the army
were to come up the high road
and pitch their camp for one night
in the forest
and the sound of the cricket
be drowned by the sound of elephant,
horse,
chariot
and foot-soldier,
by the sound of tabor,
drum [283]
and conch —
would he say rightly,
who should say:

"Never now in this forest
shall the cricket be heard again'?

'No, indeed, sir,
that is not the case,
for when the rajah and his minister have left the forest,
the cricket shall be heard again.'

'It is even so, sirs,
where a person,
unattentive to tho signs in things,
enters and abides in the signless mental concentration,
and, thinking:

"I've won to the signless mental concentration,"

keeps company with monks,
nuns,
lay-disciples,
men and women,
rajahs,
their ministers,
course-setters
or their disciples.

Living in company,
untrammelled,
rude,
given over to gossip,
passion corrupts his heart;
and with his heart corrupted by passion,
he disavows the training
and returns to the lower life.

And presently the venerable Citta Hatthisariputta
disavowed the training
and returned to the lower life.

Then Citta's friends
went to the venerable Mahā Koṭṭhita
and said:

'Did the venerable Mahā Koṭṭhita
discover Citta Hatthisāriputta
by mind compassing mind[9]
concerning the thought:

"This and that state of attainment
has Citta won to,
but he will give up the training
and return to the lower life" -

or did devas tell him this thing:

"Citta Hatthisariputta, sir,
has won this and that state of attainment,
but he'll return to the lower life"?'

'Reverend sirs,
I discovered it by mind compassing mind
concerning the thought:

"This and that state of attainment
has Citta won to,
but he will give up the training
and return to the lower life"
but devas also told me:

"Citta Hatthisariputta, sir,
has won this and that state of attainment,
but he'll return to the lower life"'[10]

Then the venerable Citta's friends
approached the Exalted One,
saluted him
and sat down at one side;
and so seated,
they said to him:

'Lord, Citta Hatthisāriputta
has won to this and that state of attainment,
yet he has disavowed the training
and returned to the lower life.'

'Citta, monks, will ere long
bethink him of renouncing
[the worldly life].'

And[11] not long after,
Citta Hatthisāriputta had his hair [284] and beard shaved off,
donned the yellow robe
and went forth from the home
to the homeless life.

And the venerable Citta Hatthisāriputta,
living alone,
secluded,
earnest,
ardent,
resolved,
not long after,
entered and abode in that aim above all
of the godly life -
realizing it here and now
by his own knowledge -
for the sake of which
clansmen rightly go forth from the home
to the homeless life;
and he knew:

'Birth is destroyed,
the godly life is lived,
done is what was to be done,
there is no more of this.'

And the venerable Citta Hatthisāriputta
was numbered among the arahants.

 


[1] See D. i, 190 ff.; Dial. i, 256 n. DA. ii, 378 says he was tho son of an elephant-driver, quick at learning, and refers to the incident in our sutta, adding that the conversation was between Moggailāna and Koṭṭhita.

[2] Dujjānaṃ, a hard knowing.

[3] Soratasorato, nivātanivāto, upasant'upasanto.

[4] See above VI, Ī 54.

[5] Kiṭṭha, a stubble-field; cf. S. iv, 196 for simile.

[6] Cf. D. i, 89; M. i, 279; A. i, 9.

[7] Cf. M. ii, 255; our text reads abhidosikaṃ, S.e. ābhi-, Comy. ābhi-dosiyaṃ.

[8] Cf. D. i, 84; M. ii, 22.

[9] Cetasā ceto paricca.

[10] This is admitted several times by the Founder or recorded of him (see No. 62), pointing to a tradition preceding the omniscienee-cult of him, but has so far not been found recorded of a disciple.

[11] All this recurs at D. i, 202 ff. Comy. observes: this elder went forth seven times. And why? Because in the time of Kassapa Buddha he praised the householder's life to a monk.

 


[ed1] Abhidhammakathaṃ. Higher-dhamma-talk; not talk on [the] Abhidhamma. Hare has capatilized the term, so he must have had this incorrect idea in mind, but that work did not exist at this time.


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