Khuddaka Nikaya


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PSALMS OF THE BRETHREN

Canto I. Psalms of Single Verses


 

Canto I.
Psalms of Single Verses
Part IV

LI-LIV
Godhika, Subāhu, Valliya, Uttiya

Translated from the Pali by Mrs. C.A.F. Rhys Davids.

[idx][pali]

Public Domain

 

In the time of our Buddha, these four, companions in a former birth when Kassapa Buddha was on earth, were reborn at Pava[1] as the sons of four Malla rājas,[2] and there [55] was whole-hearted friendship between them. They went on some embassy to the King at Kapilavatthu. At that time the Master too had gone thither, and was staying in the Banyan Park, where he convinced the Sākiyan rajas by his twin-miracle[3] Then the four saw the same and believed. They entered the Order, and not long after attained arahantship with thorough mastery of the letter and spirit of the Norm. Now after they had received much honour and support from the King and his ministers, they dwelt in the forest. Then King Bimbisara, when they went to Rājagaha, called on them and invited them to spend the rains, building for each of them a chalet, but carelessly omitting to have the huts roofed. So the Theras dwelt in those huts unsheltered. But at the time of the rains, the god rained not.[4] And the king, wondering thereat, remembered his neglect, and had the cluilets thatched with plaster and painted, and held an opening festival, besides giving gifts to the Order. The Theras did the King the favour of entering, and forthwith attained to the suffusion of universal love. Then from the north and the east arose a great storm-cloud, and just as the Theras emerged from their ecstasy, the rain fell. Then Godhika, aroused by the thunder of the storm, uttered this verse:

[51] God rains as 'twere a melody most sweet.
Snug is my little hut, sheltered, well-roofed.
The heart of me is steadfast and at peace.
Now an it pleaseth thee to rain, god, rain !

And Subahu:

[52] God rains as 'twere a melody most sweet.
Snug is my little hut, sheltered, well-roofed,
Well hath my mind the body's nature grasped.[5] Now an it pleaseth thee to rain, god, rain!

[56] And Valliya:

[53] God rains as 'twere a melody most sweet.
Snug is my little hut, sheltered, well-roofed.
Herein earnest and strenuous I dwell.
Now an it pleaseth thee to rain, god, rain!

And Uttiya:

[54] God rains as 'twere a melody most sweet.
Snug is my little hut, sheltered, well-roofed.
Herein I dwell unmated and alone.[6]
Now an it pleaseth thee to rain, god, rain!

 


[1] See Dialogues, ii. 186 ff.

[2] Among Mallas, Koliyans, Licchavis, Sākiyans, every clansman was called a rāja.

[3] See p. 36, n. 1.

[4] The usual idiom for 'it rained' (cf. I.). The Commentary again paraphrases 'deva' by rain-cloud (megha), without Pajjunna. The metre of these rain-verses is of a peculiar rippling rhythm. I cannot allocate it.

[5] Lit.: 'Well composed is the mind with respect to the senses.'

[6] Adutiyo can mean this, or else 'free from craving.' Cf. verse 896, n.

 


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