Anguttara Nikaya


[Site Map]  [Home]  [Sutta Indexes]  [Glossology]  [Site Sub-Sections]

The Pali is transliterated as IAST Unicode (āīūṃṅñṭḍṇḷ). Alternatives:
[ ASCII (aiumnntdnl) | Velthuis (aaiiuu.m'n~n.t.d.n.l) ]

 

Anguttara Nikāya
Sattaka Nipāta

Sutta 62

Satta-suri-yuggamana Suttaɱ

The Sun[1]

Translated from the Pali by E.M. Hare.

Copyright The Pali Text Society
Commercial Rights Reserved
Creative Commons Licence
For details see Terms of Use.

[64]


 

[1] Thus[2] have I heard:

Once the Exalted One was dwelling in Ambapālī's[3] Grove,
near Vesālī

There the Exalted One addressed the monks, saying:

'Monks!'

'Lord!' they replied.

And the Exalted One said:

'Impermanent, monks, are compounded things.

Unstable, monks, are compounded things.

Insecure, monks, are compounded things.

So,[4] monks,
be ye dissatisfied with[5] all things of this world,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, Sineru,[6] king of mountains,
is eighty-four thousand [65] leagues in length,
eighty-four thousand[7] leagues in breadth,
eighty-four thousand leagues immersed in the great ocean.

It stands out above the waters of the ocean
eighty-four thousand leagues.

Monks, there comes a time when for many years,
for many hundreds of years,
for many thousands of years,
for many hundreds of thousands of years,
there is no rain.

And when the rains come not,
all seed life[8] and vegetation,
all trees that yield medicine,
palms and giants of the jungle
become parched
and dried up
and are no more.

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, there comes a time,
when in some age,
at the end of some vast period,
a second sun appears.

When the second sun appears,
all the streams and the tarns[9]
become parched
and dried up
and are no more.

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, there comes a time,
when in some age,
at the end of some vast period,
a third sun appears.

When the third sun appears,
all the great rivers
become parched
and dried up
and are no more,
that is to say:[10] the Ganges,
the Yamunā,[11] the Aciravatī,[12]
the Sarabhū
and the Mahī.

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, there comes a time,
when in some age,
at the end of some vast period,
a fourth sun appears.

When the fourth [66] sun appears,
all the great lakes,
whence these great rivers flow,
become parched
and dried up
and are no more,
that is to say:
the Anotattā,
the Sībapapātā,
the Rathakārā,
the Kaṇṇamuṇḍā,
the Kunālā,
the Chaddantā
and the Mandākinī.
[13]

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, there comes a time,
when in some age,
at the end of some vast period,
a fifth sun appears.

When the fifth sun appears,
the waters[14] of the mighty ocean recede a hundred leagues,
the waters recede two hundred leagues,
the waters recede three hundred leagues,
the waters recede four hundred leagues,
the waters recede five hundred leagues,
the waters recede six hundred leagues,
the waters recede seven hundred leagues.

The waters of the mighty ocean
remain at a depth of seven palm-trees,
of six,
five,
four,
three,
two,
of merely one palm-tree.

The waters of the mighty ocean
remain at a depth of seven men's stature,
of six,
five,
four,
three,
two,
of merely one man's stature;
of just half a man,
of merely up to a man's hip,
of merely up to his knee,
of merely up to his ankle.

Monks, just as in the autumn time,
when the rain deva sheds big drops of rain,
here and there in the foot-prints of cows,
there are puddles;[15]
even so, monks,
as mere puddles in a cow's foot-prints
are the waters of the mighty ocean,
here and there.

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, there comes a time,
when in some age,
at the end of some vast period,
a sixth sun appears.

When the sixth sun appears,
both this earth
and Sineru, king of mountains,
emit smoke,
disgorge smoke,
belch forth clouds of smoke.[16]

Monks, just as a potter's oven,
when first lighted,
emits smoke,
disgorges smoke,
belches forth clouds of smoke;
even so, monks,
when the sixth sun appears,
both this great earth
and Sineru, [67] king of mountains,
emit smoke,
disgorge smoke
and belch forth clouds of smoke.

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Monks, there comes a time,
when in some age,
at the end of some vast period,
a seventh sun appears.

When the seventh sun appears,
this earth
and Sineru, king of mountains,
buret into flames,
blaze up
and become a single sheet of flame.

And the fiery beam of the blaze
and the burn of the great earth
and of Mount Sineru,
thrown up by the winds,
reaches even to Brahma's world.

The peaks of Mount Sineru,
measuring one,
two,
three,
four
and five hundred leagues,
as it blazes and bums,
vanquished
and overwhelmed by the vastness
of the fiery mass,
crumble away.

Out of the blaze
and the burn of the great earth
and Mount Sineru,
there is neither cinder nor ash to be found.[17]

Monks, just as out of blazing,
burning ghee or oil
no cinder nor ash is found;[18]
even so, monks,
out of the blaze
and burn of the great earth
and Mount Sineru
neither cinder nor ash is to be found.

Thus impermanent,
thus unstable,
thus insecure
are all compounded things.

Be ye dissatisfied with them,
be ye repelled by them,
be ye utterly free from them!

Now, where[19] is the sage,
where is the believer,
who thinks:

"This great earth
and Mount Sineru
will be burnt up,
will utterly perish and be no more" -
save among those who have seen the bourn?[20]

In bygone days, monks,
there was a teacher named Sunetta,[21]
a course-setter,
who was free from all lustful passions.

Now he had many hundreds of disciples,
to whom he taught the doctrine of fellowship in Brahma's world.[22]

And all they who grasped the word taught by Sunetta,
in its fullness,
on the breaking up of the body after death,
were reborn in the realm of bliss,
the Brahma-world.

But of those who did not grasp the word in full,
some, after death,
were reborn into the fellowship of the devas
who have power over others' creations,
some among the devas who delight in creating,[23]
some among the Tusita devas,
some among the Yama devas,
some among the devas of the Thirty,
some in the company of the Four Royal devas,
some among wealthy nobles,
some among wealthy brahmans
and some among wealthy householders.

Now Sunetta, the teacher, thought thus:

"It is not seemly
that I should have precisely the same mode of existence
as my disciples after death.

What if I were to make amity[24] become
to a perfect degree!"

And Sunetta, the teacher,
cultivated the thought of amity
for seven years,
and then for seven world-cycles
returned not to this world.

Then when the world rolled on, he arose in the sphere of Radiance;
then when the world rolled back,
he arose in Brahmā's empty palace.

Then, monks, he became Brahmā,
the conqueror,
unconquered,
all-seeing,
all-powerful.

Thirty-six times he was Sakka, the deva-king.

Many time seven he was a Wheel-turning rajah,
just,
righteous,
conquering the fur ends of the earth,
bringing stability to the country,
possessing the seven gems.[25]

Yet, monks,
although Sunetta lived so long
and lasted such a time,
he was not freed from birth,
old age and death,
from weeping and lamentation,
from pain,
grief
and tribulation.

He was not freed from ill, I say.

And what is the reason?

It was by not being awake to,
by not penetrating four conditions.

What four?

Monks, it was by not being awake to,[26] by not penetrating [69] Ariyan right conduct;
it was by not being awake to,
by not penetrating Ariyan concentration;
it was by not being awake to,
by not penetrating Ariyan wisdom;
and it was by not being awake to,
by not penetrating Ariyan release.

Monks, it is just this:

when Ariyan right conduct
is awakened[27] and penetrated,
when Ariyan concentration
is awakened and penetrated,
when Ariyan wisdom
is awakened and penetrated,
and when Ariyan release
is awakened and penetrated,
the craving for life is cut off,
the cord[28] that binds one to becoming
is destroyed
and there is no more coming-to-be.'

Thus spake the Exalted One.

And when the Wellfarer had so spoken, the Teacher spoke again, and said:[29]

'Right conduct, concentration, wisdom, full release:
These things [in men] were woken by famed Gotama.
Thus, Dhamma realizing, th'Awake[30] spake to the monks,
He, the ill-ender, teacher, seer, completely cool.'[31]

 


[1] Bu.'s comments on this sutta (in A.A.) are much the same as at Vism. 415 f., trsl. ii, 480; see Warren's Buddh. in Trsl. 321 f.; cf also Life of B., by E. J. Thomas, 243. In A.A. Bu. refers to Vism., and adds that 500 monks were undergoing a course of meditative exercise on impermanence, and the Exalted One preached this sermon to show the snares of this world of things, some of which are the issue of grasping and some are not (see DhS. trsl. 201).

Mark xiii 31
Cælum, et terra transibunt,
verba autem mea non transibunt.

Heaven and earth shall pass away,
but my word shall not pass away.
— Douay-Rheims Bible
parallel Clementine Latin Vulgate,

Peter iii 10
But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.
The heavens will disappear with a roar;
the elements will be destroyed by fire,
and the earth and everything done in it
will be laid bare.
— Biblica, Inc.,
New International Version®

Revelation xxi, 1
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth:
for the first heaven
and the first earth
were passed away;
and there was no more sea.
— King James Version

p.p. explains it all — p.p.

[2] A. J. Edmunds in Buddhist and Christian Gospels [AN 07 062 edmn] compares this sutta with Mark xiii. 31; 2 Peter iii, 10; Revelation xxi, 1.

[3] She was a courtezan of Vesālī. For her conversion see Dial. ii. 102 f.; Th. 2, 270; Sisters, 120 f.

[4] Yāvañc'idaɱ, this passage recurs at S. ii, 178; D. ii, 198.

[5] Nibbindituɱ, 'not to find'; cf. the Christian 'counting as loss,' and the slang 'fed up with.'

Cakkavāḷaɱ. A Cakkavāḷa is a vast circular plane covered with water, in the centre of which stands Mount Meru. Round Meru are the seven concentric circles of rock Beyond these, on the north, east, south, and west, lie the four great continents, and the whole is bounded by the Cakkavāḷapabbata. [The lofty wall of mountains which encircles the Cakkavāḷa, forming the world's limit] Each Cakkavāḷa has its own sun and moon. The Cakkavāḷas are scattered through space in infinite numbers. They are arranged in groups of three, touching each other, the triangular space in the center of eachgroup being occupied by the Lokantarika hell.
Childers, A Dictionary of the Pali Language

p.p. explains it all — p.p.

[6] Otherwise called Mount Meru, the fabulous mountain in the centre of the world (cakkavāḷaɱ, see Childers, 97 s.v.).

[7] The number eighty-four thousand (12 X 7) merely represents a very large number; cf. below, p. 263, and references there. So also 500 represents merely 'scores of,' 'dozens of.'

[8] Cf. K.S. v. 37 n. Tiṇa, usually grass; here Comy, instances the palmyra (bahisārā) and the coconut. Trees from whose bark medicine is extracted are very common in the East.

[9] Comy. Save those great rivers and lakes (mentioned below).

[10] This list recurs below VIII, Ī 19; S. ii, 135; v. 38; A. v, 22; Vin. ii, 237, 239; Mil. 70; Vism. 10.

[11] This is presumably the Jumna.

[12] Cf. M. ii, 113; Vin. i, 191; S.B.E. xi, 167 n.

[13] This list recurs at J. v, 415; SnA. 407; DA. i, 164; Ud.A. 300; and S.A. ii; Vism. 416, with variations, mostly Tiyaggalā for Mandākinī. The lake Anotattā recurs fairly frequently alone - e.g., Mil. 286; J. i. 50.

[14] This, to the end of the para., recurs at M. 1, 187 [MN 28 p.234].

[15] Cf. A. iii, 188; Mil. 287 (see Q. of M. ii, 138, the DA, reference should be 283, not 147.)

[16] Cf. S. iii, 150 {K.S. iii, 126).

[17] Comy, observes that in the twinkling of an eye, the earth, Mount Sineru, the snowy mountains girdling the world, the six sensuous heavens and the first Jhāna-Brahmā world are burnt up.

[18] This simile recurs at Ud. 93; D. ii, 164.

[19] Ko, lit. who.

[20] Diṭṭhapada. Comy. The Ariyan, who is a Streamwinner; see Childers, p. 126, one who has seen Nibbāna; P.E.D. s.v. referring to A. iv, 103, 'visible signs or characteristics,' but cf. also KhpA. 191.

[21] See below, p. 90.

[22] This is the doctrine the Bodhisatva usually taught, according to the Jātakas. It is the Mettā, or Amity-Norm. Cf. J. ii, 61; iv. 490; cf. above, Ī 59a.

[23] Paranimmitavasavatti and Nimmānarrati respectively. This list of devas recurs at D. i, 210; ii, 212; A. i, 210; cf. Vism. trsl. 259.

[24] With all MSS., except S. Comy, reads maggaɱ for mettaɱ, but explains mettaɱ.

[25] Cf. above, p. 54. The text here repeats in full.

[266] Anubodha.

[27] Anubuddha.

[288] Bhavanetti, the cord that binds to rebirth; at DhS. trsl. 279 it is a condition of lust - I quote the commentarial note there: 'For by it beings are led, as cows by a cord bound about their necks, wherever they are wanted.' A.A. observes that 500 attained arahantship on hearing this sutta.

[29] This gāthā and the passage immediately above recur at D. ii, 123; A. ii, 2; K.V. i, 115. In connection with the gatha see J.P.T.S., 1909, 320. See also Rhys Davids' remarks at Dial, ii, 73. (He overlooked that here as at D. ii, loc. cit., the Buddha is related to have spoken this verse.)

[30] Buddho.

[31] Parinibbuto.


Contact:
E-mail
Copyright Statement