Majjhima Nikaya


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Majjhima Nikāya
I. Mūlapaṇṇāsa
3. Tatiya Vagga

The Middle Length Sayings
I. The First Fifty Discourses
3. The Third Division

Sutta 27

Cūḷa Hatthi-Padopama Suttaɱ[1]

Lesser Discourse on the Simile of the Elephant's Footprint

Translated from the Pali by I.B. Horner, M.A.
Associate of Newham College, Cambridge
First Published in 1954

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

 


 

[1][chlm][than][ntbb][upal] THUS have I heard:

At one time the Lord was staying near Sāvatthī
in the Jeta Grove in Anāthapiṇḍika's monastery.

Now at that time the brahman Jāṇussoṇi was leaving Sāvatthī early in the day
in an all-white chariot
(drawn by) mares.[2]

The brahman Jāṇussoṇi saw the wanderer Pilotika
coming in the distance;
seeing him,
he spoke thus to the wanderer Pilotika:

"Now, where is the revered Vacchāyana[3] coming from
so early in the day?"

"I, sir, am coming from the presence
of the recluse Gotama."

"What do you think about this, Vacchāyana?

Has the recluse Gotama lucidity of wisdom?[4]

Do you think him clever?"

"But who am I, sir,
that I would know
whether the recluse Gotama has lucidity of wisdom?

Surely only one like him
could know whether the recluse Gotama
has lucidity of wisdom."

"Undoubtedly it is with lofty praise
that the revered Vacchāyana praises
the recluse Gotama."

"But who am I, sir,
that I should praise the recluse Gotama?

Praised by the praised[5]
is the revered Gotama,
chief among devas and men."

"But what good thing
does the revered Vacchāyana see
that he has this high confidence
in the recluse Gotama?"

"Sir, as a skilled elephant-tracker
might enter an elephant-forest,
and might see in the elephant-forest
a great footprint,
long and broad;
he might come to the conclusion:

'Indeed it is a [221] great elephant.'

Even so did I, sir, when I had seen
the four footprints of the recluse Gotama,
come to this conclusion:

The fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order is faring along well.

What are the four?

Here, sir, I see some clever nobles,
subtle,[6]
practised in disputing with others,
skilled in hair-splitting,
who go about, methinks,
breaking to pieces
in their wisdom
the views (of others).

These hear:

'Undoubtedly the recluse Gotama
will visit a certain village
or little town.

They construct a question,
thinking:

'Having approached the recluse Gotama,
we will ask him this question of ours.

If, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus;
and if, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus.'

These heard:

'It is certain that the recluse Gotama
is visiting such and such a village
or little town.'

So they approached the recluse Gotama.

The recluse Gotama gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted them
with talk on dhamma.

These,
gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted by the recluse Gotama
with talk on dhamma,
did not ask the recluse Gotama the question at all -
whence could they refute him?

On the contrary
they became disciples of the recluse Gotama.

When I, sir,
saw this first footprint of the recluse Gotama,
then I came to the conclusion:

'The fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

And again I, sir, see here
some clever brahmans,
subtle,
practised in disputing with others,
skilled in hair-splitting,
who go about, methinks,
breaking to pieces in their wisdom
the views (of others).

'Undoubtedly the recluse Gotama
will visit a certain village
or little town.

They construct a question,
thinking:

'Having approached the recluse Gotama,
we will ask him this question of ours.

If, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus;
and if, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus.'

These heard:

'It is certain that the recluse Gotama
is visiting such and such a village
or little town.'

So they approached the recluse Gotama.

The recluse Gotama gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted them
with talk on dhamma.

These,
gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted by the recluse Gotama
with talk on dhamma,
did not ask the recluse Gotama the question at all -
whence could they refute him?

On the contrary
they became disciples of the recluse Gotama.

When I, sir,
saw this second footprint of the recluse Gotama,
then I came to the conclusion:

'The fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

And again I, sir, see here
some clever householders,
subtle,
practised in disputing with others,
skilled in hair-splitting,
who go about, methinks,
breaking to pieces in their wisdom
the views (of others).

'Undoubtedly the recluse Gotama
will visit a certain village
or little town.

They construct a question,
thinking:

'Having approached the recluse Gotama,
we will ask him this question of ours.

If, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus;
and if, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus.'

These heard:

'It is certain that the recluse Gotama
is visiting such and such a village
or little town.'

So they approached the recluse Gotama.

The recluse Gotama gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted them
with talk on dhamma.

These,
gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted by the recluse Gotama
with talk on dhamma,
did not ask the recluse Gotama the question at all -
whence could they refute him?

On the contrary
they became disciples of the recluse Gotama.

When I, sir,
saw this third footprint of the recluse Gotama,
then I came to the conclusion:

'The fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

And again I, sir, see here
some clever recluses,
subtle,
practised in disputing with others,
skilled in hair-splitting,
who go about, methinks,
breaking to pieces in their wisdom
the views (of others).

'Undoubtedly the recluse Gotama
will visit a certain village
or little town.

They construct a question,
thinking:

'Having approached the recluse Gotama,
we will ask him this question of ours.

If, on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus;
and if, [222] on being asked by us thus,
he answers thus,
we will refute him thus.'

These heard:

'It is certain that the recluse Gotama
is visiting such and such a village
or little town.'

So they approached the recluse Gotama.

The recluse Gotama gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted them
with talk on dhamma.

These,
gladdened,
roused,
incited,
delighted by the recluse Gotama
with talk on dhamma,
did not ask the recluse Gotama the question at all -
whence could they refute him?

On the contrary,
they asked leave of the recluse Gotama himself
for the going forth
from home into homelessness.

The recluse Gotama let them go forth.

These, gone forth like this,
living alone,
aloof,
diligent,
ardent,
self-resolute,
having by their own super-knowledge
soon realised here and now
that goal of the Brahma-faring
for the sake of which young men of family
rightly go forth from home into homelessness,
entering on it,
abided in it.

These speak thus:

'Indeed we were nearly lost,
indeed we nearly perished,
for while formerly we were not (true) recluses,
we claimed that we were,
saying:

"We are recluses";

not being (true) brahmans,
we claimed that we were,
saying:

"We are brahmans";

not being (true) perfected ones,
we claimed that we were,
saying:

"We are perfected ones".

But now we really are recluses,
now we really are brahmans,
now we really are perfected ones.'

When I, sir,
saw this fourth footprint of the recluse Gotama,
then I came to the conclusion:

'The fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.'"

When this had been said,
Jāṇussoṇi the brahman got down from his all-white chariot
(drawn by) mares,
and having arranged his outer cloak over one shoulder,
having saluted the Lord three times with joined palms,
he uttered this utterance:

"Reverence to this Lord,
perfected one,
fully Self-awakened One;

Reverence to this Lord,
perfected one,
fully Self-awakened One;

Reverence to this Lord,
perfected one,
fully Self-awakened One.

Perhaps we,
somewhere,
sometime
will meet the honoured Gotama;
perhaps there may be some conversation."

 


 

Then Jāṇussoṇi the brahman approached the Lord;
having approached,
he exchanged greetings with the Lord;
having exchanged greetings of friendliness and courtesy,
he sat down at a respectful distance.

As he was sitting down at a respectful distance,
Jāṇussoṇi the brahman
related to the Lord
all the conversation he had had up till now
with the wanderer Pilotika.

When he had spoken thus,
the Lord spoke thus to Jāṇussoṇi the brahman:

"Brahman, to a (certain) extent
the simile of the elephant's [223] footprints
is not complete in all its detail.

But, brahman,
to the extent to which the simile of the elephant's footprints
is complete in all its detail,
listen,
pay careful attention
and I will speak."

"Yes, revered one,"
Jāṇussoṇi the brahman answered the Lord in assent.

The Lord spoke thus:

"Brahman, an elephant tracker
might enter an elephant forest,
and might see in the elephant forest
a large footprint,
long and broad.

But a skilled elephant tracker
does not at once
come to the conclusion:

Indeed it is a great bull-elephant.

What is the reason for this?

There are, brahman,
in an elephant forest
stunted she-elephants
who have large footprints,
and he thinks
this might be a footprint of theirs.

He follows them
and following them
he sees in the elephant forest
a great footprint,
long and broad,
and a grazing off of the high things.[7]

A skilled elephant tracker
does not at once come to the conclusion:

Indeed it is a great bull-elephant.

What is the reason for this?

There are, brahman,
in an elephant forest
she-elephants who have tushes
and who have large footprints,
and he thinks
this might be a footprint of theirs.

He follows them
and following them
he sees in the elephant forest
a great footprint,
long and broad,
and a grazing off of the high things
and the high things slashed by tusks.

A skilled elephant tracker
does not at once come to the conclusion:

Indeed it is a great bull-elephant.

What is the reason for this?

There are, brahman,
in an elephant forest
she-elephants with stumpy tusks
who have large footprints,
and he thinks
this might be a footprint of theirs.

He follows them
and following them
he sees in the elephant forest
a great footprint,
long and broad,
and a grazing off of the high things
and the high things slashed by tusks
and the high things broken off at the boughs.

And he sees that bull-elephant
at the root of a tree
or in the open,
walking
or standing
or sitting
or lying down.

He comes to the conclusion:

This is that bull-elephant himself.

In the same way, brahman,
a Tathāgata arises in the world,
a perfected one,
a fully Self-awakened One,
endowed with right knowledge and conduct,
well-farer,
knower of the worlds,[8]
the matchless charioteer of men to be tamed,
the Awakened One,
the Lord.

He makes known this world
with the devas,
with Māra,
with Brahmā,
[224] creation
with its recluses and brahmans,
its devas and men,
having realised them by his own super-knowledge.

He teaches dhamma which is lovely at the beginning,
lovely in the middle,
lovely at the ending,
with the spirit and the letter;
he proclaims the Brahma-faring
wholly fulfilled,
quite purified.

A householder
or a householder's son
or one born in another family
hears that dhamma.

Having heard that dhamma,
he gains faith in the Tathāgata.

Endowed with this faith
that he has acquired,
he reflects in this way:

'The household life is confined and dusty;[9]
going forth is of the open;
it is not easy for one who lives in a house
to fare the Brahma-faring
wholly fulfilled,
wholly pure,
polished like a conch-shell.

Suppose now that I,
having cut off hair and beard,
having put on saffron robes,
should go forth from home
into homelessness?'

After a time,
getting rid of his wealth,[10]
be it small or great,
getting rid of his circle of relations,
be it small or great,
having cut off his hair and beard,
having put on saffron robes,
he goes forth from home
into homelessness.

He, being thus one who has gone forth
and who is endowed with the training
and the way of living of monks,
abandoning onslaught on creatures,[11]
is one who abstains from onslaught on creatures;
the stick laid aside,
the knife laid aside,
he lives kindly,
scrupulous,
friendly
and compassionate
towards all breathing things and creatures.

Abandoning the taking of what is not given,
he is one who abstains from taking what is not given;
being one who takes (only) what is given,
who waits for what is given,
not by stealing he lives with a self become pure.

Abandoning unchastity,
he is one who is chaste,
keeping remote (from unchastity),
abstaining from dealings with women.[12]

Abandoning lying speech,
he is one who abstains from lying speech,
a truth-speaker,
a bondsman to truth,[13]
trustworthy,
dependable,
no deceiver of the world.[14]

[225] Abandoning slanderous speech,[15]
he is one who abstains from slanderous speech;
having heard something here
he is not one for repeating it elsewhere
for (causing) variance among these (people),
or having heard something elsewhere
he is not one to repeat it there
for (causing) variance among these (people).

In this way
he is a reconciler of those who are at variance,
and one who combines those who are friends.

Concord is his pleasure,
concord his delight,
concord his joy,
concord is the motive of his speech.

Abandoning harsh speech,
he is one who abstains from harsh speech.

Whatever speech is gentle,
pleasing to the ear,
affectionate,
going to the heart,
urbane,
pleasant to the manyfolk,
agreeable to the manyfolk -
he comes to be one who utters speech like this.

Abandoning frivolous chatter,
he is one who abstains from frivolous chatter.

He is a speaker at a right time,
a speaker of fact,
a speaker on the goal,[16]
a speaker on dhamma,[17]
a speaker on discipline,[18]
he speaks words that are worth treasuring,
with similes at a right time
that are discriminating,
connected with the goal.

He comes to be one who abstains
from what involves destruction to seed-growth,
to vegetable growth.[19]

He comes to be one who eats one meal a day,
refraining at night,
abstaining from eating at a wrong time.[20]

He comes to be one who abstains
from watching shows of dancing,
singing,
music.[21]

He comes to be one who abstains
from using garlands,
scents,
unguents,
adornments,
finery.[22]

He comes to be one who abstains
from using high beds,
large beds.[23]

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting gold and silver.[24]

He comes [226] to be one who abstains
from accepting raw grain.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting raw meat.[25]

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting women and girls.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting women slaves and men slaves.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting goats and sheep.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting fowl and swine.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting elephants, cows, horses, mares.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting fields and sites.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting messages or going on such.[26]

He comes to be one who abstains from buying and selling.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting from cheating with weights.

He comes to be one who abstains
from accepting from cheating with bronzes.[27]

He comes to be one who abstains
from cheating with measures.[28]

He comes to be one who abstains
from the crooked ways of bribery, fraud and deceit.

He comes to be one who abstains
from maiming, murdering, manacling, highway robbery.[29]

He comes to be contented
with the robes for protecting his body,[30]
with the almsfood for sustaining his stomach.

Wherever he goes
he takes these things[31] with him as he goes.

As a bird on the wing
wherever it flies
takes its' wings with it as it flies,
so a monk,
contented with the robes for protecting his body,
with the almsfood for sustaining his stomach,
wherever he goes
takes these things with him as he goes.

He, possessed of the ariyan body of moral habit,
subjectively experiences the bliss of blamelessness.[32]

Having seen a material shape with the eye,
he is not entranced by the general appearance,
he is not entranced by the detail.

If he dwells with this organ of sight uncontrolled,[33]
covetousness and dejection,
evil unskilled states of mind,
might predominate.

So he fares along controlling it;
he guards the organ of sight,
he comes to control over the organ of sight.

Having heard a sound with the ear,
he is not entranced by the general appearance,
he is not entranced by the detail.

If he dwells with this organ of hearing uncontrolled,
covetousness and dejection,
evil unskilled states of mind,
might predominate.

So he fares along controlling it;
he guards the organ of hearing,
he comes to control over the organ of hearing.

Having smelt a smell with the nose,
he is not entranced by the general appearance,
he is not entranced by the detail.

If he dwells with this organ of smell uncontrolled,
covetousness and dejection,
evil unskilled states of mind,
might predominate.

So he fares along controlling it;
he guards the organ of smell,
he comes to control over the organ of smell.

Having savoured a taste with the tongue,
he is not entranced by the general appearance,
he is not entranced by the detail.

If he dwells with this organ of taste uncontrolled,
covetousness and dejection,
evil unskilled states of mind,
might predominate.

So he fares along controlling it;
he guards the organ of taste,
he comes to control over the organ of taste.

Having felt a touch with the body,
he is not entranced by the general appearance,
he is not entranced by the detail.

If he dwells with this organ of touch uncontrolled,
covetousness and dejection,
evil unskilled states of mind,
might predominate.

So he fares along controlling it;
he guards the organ of touch,
he comes to control over the organ of touch.

Having cognised a mental object with the mind,
he is not entranced by the general appearance,
he is not entranced by the detail.

If he lives with this organ of mind uncontrolled,
covetousness and dejection,
evil unskilled [227] states of mind
might predominate.

So he fares along controlling it;
he guards the organ of mind,
he comes to control over the organ of mind.

If he is possessed of this ariyan control of the (sense-) organs,
he subjectively experiences unsullied well-being.

Whether he is setting out
or returning,[34]
he is one who comports himself properly;
whether he is looking down
or looking round,
he is one who comports himself properly;
whether he is bending back
or stretching out (his arm),
he is one who comports himself properly;
whether he is carrying his outer cloak,
his bowl,
his robe,
he is one who comports himself properly;
whether he is munching,
drinking,
eating,
savouring,
he is one who comports himself properly;
whether he is obeying the calls of nature,
he is one who comports himself properly;
whether he is walking,
standing,
asleep,
awake,
talking,
silent,
he is one who comports himself properly.

Possessed of[35] this ariyan body of moral habit
and possessed of this ariyan control of the (sense-) organs
and possessed of this ariyan mindfulness
and clear consciousness,
he chooses[36] a remote lodging in a forest,
at the root of a tree,
on a mountain slope,
in a wilderness,
in a hill-cave,
in a cemetery,
in a forest haunt,
in the open
or on a heap of straw.

He, returning from alms-gathering
after his meal,
sits down cross-legged
holding the back erect,
having made mindfulness
rise up in front of him.

He, having got rid of covetousness for the world,
lives with a mind devoid of coveting,
he purifies the mind of coveting.

By getting rid of the taint of ill-will,
he lives benevolent in mind;
and compassionate for the welfare
of all creatures and beings,
he purifies the mind of the taint of ill-will.

By getting rid of sloth and torpor,
he hves devoid of sloth and torpor;
perceiving the light,
mindful and clearly conscious,
he purifies the mind of sloth and torpor.

By getting rid of restlessness and worry,
he lives calmly,
the mind subjectively tranquillised,
he purifies the mind of restlessness and worry.

By getting rid of doubt,
he hves doubt-crossed;
unperplexed as to the states that are skilled,
he purifies his mind of doubt.

He, by getting rid Of these five hindrances[37] -
defilements of a mind and weakening to intuitive wisdom -
aloof from pleasurs of the senses,
aloof from unskilled states of mind,
enters and abides in the first meditation,
which is accompanied by initial thought and discursive thought,
is born of aloofness
and is rapturous and joyful.

This, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and [228] what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment[38] thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

And again, brahman, a monk,
by allaying initial and discursive thought,
the mind subjectively tranquillised
and fixed on one point,
enters and abides in the second meditation,
which is devoid of initial and discursive thought,
is born of concentration
and is rapturous and joyful.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

And again, brahman, a monk,
by the fading out of rapture,
dwells with equanimity,
attentive and clearly conscious,
and experiences in his person
that joy of which the ariyans say:

'Joyful lives he
who has equanimity and is mindful',

and he enters and abides in the third meditation.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

And again, brahman, a monk,
by getting rid of joy,
by getting rid of anguish,
by the going down of his former pleasures and sorrows,
enters and abides in the fourth meditation,
which has neither anguish nor joy,
and which is entirely purified
by equanimity and mindfulness.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

Thus with the mind composed,[39]
quite purified,
quite clarified,
without blemish,
without defilement,
grown soft and workable,
[229] fixed,
immovable,
he directs his mind to the knowledge
and recollection of former habitations,
that is to say:

One birth,
two births,
three births,
four births,
five births,
ten births,
twenty births,
thirty births,
forty births,
fifty births,
a hundred births,
a thousand births,
a hundred thousand births,
and many an eon of integration
and many an eon of disintegration
and many an eon of integration-disintegration;
such a one was I by name,
having such and such a clan,
such and such a colour,
so was I nourished,
such and such pleasant and painful experiences were mine,
so did the span of life end.

Passing from this,
I came to be in another state
where such a one was I by name,
having such and such a clan,
such and such a colour,
so was I nourished,
such and such pleasant and painful experiences were mine,
so did the span of life end.

Passing from this,
I arose here
and could recollect thus
in all their mode and detail
a variety of former habitations.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

Thus with the mind composed,
quite purified,
quite clarified,
without blemish,
without defilement,
grown soft and workable,
fixed,
immovable,
he directs his mind to the knowledge
of the passing hence
and coming to be of beings.

With the purified deva-vision
surpassing that of men
he beholds beings as they are passing hence
and coming to be,
mean,
excellent,
comely,
ugly,
well-going,
ill-going
according to the consequences of their deeds,
thinking:

Indeed these worthy beings
who were possessed of wrong conduct in body,
who were possessed of wrong conduct of speech,
who were possessed of wrong conduct of thought,
scoffers at the ariyans,
holding a wrong view,
incurring deeds consequent on a wrong view -
these, at the breaking up of the body after dying,
have arisen in a sorrowful state,
a bad bourn,
the abyss,
Niraya Hell.

But these worthy beings
who were possessed of good conduct in body,
who were possessed of good conduct in speech,
who were possessed of good conduct in thought,
who did not scoff at the ariyans,
holding a right view,
incurring deeds consequent on a right view -
these, at the breaking up of the body after dying,
have arisen in a good bourn,
a heaven world.

And thus with the purified deva-vision
surpassing that of men
he sees beings as they pass hence,
as they arise;
and he comprehends that beings are mean,
excellent,
comely,
ugly,
well-going,
ill-going
according to the consequences of deeds.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

Thus with the mind composed,
quite purified,
quite clarified,
without blemish,
without defilement,
grown soft and workable,
fixed,
immovable,
he directs his mind to the knowlege
of the destruction of the cankers.

He comprehends as it really is:

This is anguish,
this the arising of anguish,
this the stopping of anguish,
this the course leading to the stopping of anguish.

He comprehends as it really is:

These are the cankers,
this the arising of the cankers,
this the stopping of the cankers,
this the course leading to the stopping of the cankers.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

But not yet does the ariyan disciple come to fulfilment thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

When he has known thus,
when he has seen thus,
the mind is freed from the canker of sense-pleasures
and his mind is freed from the canker of becoming
and his mind is freed from the canker of ignorance.

In freedom
the knowledge comes to be
that he is freed
and he comprehends:

'Destroyed is birth,
brought to a close the Brahma-faring,
done is what was to be done,
there is no more
of being such or such.

This too, brahman, is called the Tathāgata's footprint,
and what is grazed against by the Tathāgata and what is slashed by the Tathāgata.

It is at this point, brah- [230] man, that the ariyan disciple comes to fulfilment, thinking:

'The Fully Self-awakened One is the Lord;
well taught is dhamma by the Lord;
the Order fares along well.

When this had been said,
Jāṇussoṇi the brahman spoke thus to the Lord:

"It is wonderful, revered sir,
wonderful, revered sir.

It is as if, good Gotama,
one might set upright what had been upset,
or might disclose what was covered,
or point out the way
to one who had gone astray,
or might bring an oil-lamp into the darkness
so that those with vision might see material shapes -
even so is dhamma made clear
in many a figure by the good Gotama.

I am going to the revered Gotama for refuge,
and to dhamma
and to the Order of monks.

May the good Gotama accept me
as a lay-follower,
one gone for refuge from today forth
for as long as life lasts."

Lesser Discourse on the Simile of the Elephant's Footprint:
the Seventh

 


[1] At Mhvs. XIV. 22 this was the Sutta that Mahinda preached first of all to Devānaɱpiyatissa on his arrival in Ceylon.

[2] MA. ii. 194 quotes S. v. 4 to indicate all the respects in which the chariot was white. It adds that it was harnessed to four white mares. Although the number of mares is not given in the text, Chalmers gives it as four in his translation.

[3] The name of his clan, MA. ii. 195. Cf. M. ii. 208, A. iii. 236 f., as far as the simile.

[4] paññāveyyattiyaɱ, as at M. i. 82.

[5] MA. ii. 196 instances, among others, Pasenadi, Bimbisāra, Visakha, Uppalavanna, Sāriputta, Sakka, Mahābrahmā. All are praised by their retinues, and all praise the Dasabala.

[6] This sequence also at D. i. 26, 162; and cf. whole passage with M. ii. 122.

[7] uccā ca nisevitaɱ. He sees where her shoulders have knocked against the trees, MA. ii. 198.

[8] MA. ii. 200 mentions the three worlds - that of space, that of beings, that of the habitual tendencies or activities - and says here the world of beings, and, more precisely, the world of men, is meant. Cf. DA. i, 173 f.

[9] rajāpatha. MA. ii. 204 = DA. i. 180 take this to mean, in accordance with the Mahā-aṭṭhakathā, the dust of passion, but say it is also āgamanapatha, full of comings and goings (?).

[10] Cf. D. ii. 85, 86.

[11] Cf. the following passage with D. i. 4-5; M. i. 287, iii. 33; A. ii. 208; Pug. 56; also A. iv. 249; Kvu. II.

[12] gāmadhammā. Explained at MA. ii. 206 = DA. i. 72 as things (or states of mind, dhamma) of village dwellers. But this does not fit the context very well. Cf. mātugāma, women.

[13] saccasandha. MA. i. 206 = DA. i. 73, saccena saccaɱ sandahati, he joins truth to truth.

[14] Cf. D. iii. 170.

[15] Cf. M. i. 286, iii. 49 for following passage.

[16] MA. ii. 208, DA. i. 76, he speaks about what is connected with the goal attha, of the here and now and of the beyond.

[17] MA. ii. 208 = DA. i. 76, he speaks about what is connected with the nine other-worldly things; see Dhs. 1094.

[18] MA. ii. 208 = DA. i. 76, the discipline of giving up and that of restraint.

[19] bījagāmabhūtagāma. Cf. Pāc. XI. (Vin. iv. 34), and see D. i. 5; also MA. ii, 208.

[20] Defined at Vin. iv. 86 as "after noon has passed until sunrise." Cf. S. v. 470; A. i. 212; Kvu. II. 6.

[21] Made into a dukkata offence for monks at Vin. ii. 108, and into a pācittiya for nuns at Vin. iv. 267. Cf. D. i. 6; Kvu. II. 7.

[22] Cf. Kvu. II. 8.

[23] Cf. Pāc. 87; D. i. 7; A. i. 181; Vin. i. 192, ii. 163. MA. ii. 209 says that "high beds" are those that exceed the (prescribed) measure, while "large beds" are those that are not allowable.

[24] Cf. Vin. iii. 236 ff. (Nissag. 18); Kvu. II. 10.

[25] Cf. Vin. iii. 208, where the nun Uppalavaṇṇa prepared (or roasted) meat before offering it to the Lord.

[26] Cf. D. i. 8; S. iii. 239.

[27] kaɱsa, see Nuns' Nissag. XI, XII and note at B.D. iii. 239. But MA. ii. 210 = DA. i 79 says a kaɱsa is called a golden bowl with reference to a method of cheating with copper bowls that have been made of a golden colour.

[28] MA. ii. 210 = DA. i. 79 mention three methods: "heart-break," hadaya-bheda, used in measuring ghee, oil, etc.; "pyramid-break," sikhā-bheda, used in measuring sesamum, husked rice, etc.; "cord-break," rajju-bheda, used in measuring fields and sites.

[29] DA. i. 80, this is twofold: hidden in the snow, hidden in a thicket, they kidnap people.

[30] As at D. i. 71.

[31] The eight requisites, MA. ii. 213 = DA. i. 207.

[32] [Ed. corredted as per M.L.S. 51 n.25] Cf. D. i. 70.

[33] Cf. M. i. 221.

[34] As at D. i. 70, etc.

[35] As at D. i. 71.

[36] Cf. M. i. 273, iii. 3, etc.

[37] Given also at M. i. 60, 274-76.

[38] niṭṭham gacchati can also mean "come to the conclusion" (in thought), as above. But MA. ii. 217 appears here to take it in the sense of fulfilment, saying tīsu ratanesu niṭṭham gacchati, he goes to fulfilment, or the goal, in the Three Jewels. Cf. A. ii. 175, iii. 450, v. 119 ff.

[39] Stock, as at M. i. 22, etc.


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