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— UNABBREVIATED

Saŋyutta Nikāya
I. Sagātha Vagga
7. Brāhmana Saŋyutta

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
I. Kindred Sayings with Verses
7. The Brāhmana Suttas

Translated by Mrs. Rhys Davids
Assisted by Sūriyagoḍa Sumangala Thera
Public Domain

 


I: Arahants


 

Sutta 2

Reviling

 


 

[2.1][ati] THUS HAVE I HEARD:

The Exalted One was once staying near Rājagaha, in the Bamboo Grove, at the Squirrels' Feeding-ground.

Now 'Reviler'[1] of the Bhāradvāja brahmins heard that the Bhāradvāja[2] had 'left the world to enter the Order of Gotama the Recluse.'

Vexed and displeased, he sought the presence of the Exalted One,
and there reviled and abused the Exalted One in rude and harsh speeches.[3]

When he had thus spoken, the Exalted One said:

'As to that what thinkest thou, brahmin?

Dost thou receive visits from friends and colleagues,
from thy kin by blood or by marriage,
from [other] guests?'

'Yes, Master Gotama, sometimes I do.'

'As to that what thinkest thou, brahmin?

Dost thou make ready for them food both dry and juicy,
and opportunity for rest?'

'Yes, Master Gotama, sometimes I do.'

'But if they do not accept [thy hospitality], brahmin,
whose do those things become?'

'If they do not accept, Master Gotama,
those things are for us.'

'Even so here, brahmin.

That wherewith thou revilest us who revile not,
wherewith thou scoldest us who scold not,
abusest us who abuse not,
that we accept not at thy hands.

'T is for thee only, brahmin,
't is only for thee!

He, brahmin, who revileth again at his reviler,
who scoldeth back,
who abuseth, in return, him who hath abused: —
this, brahmin, is as if thou and thy visitors dined together and made good.[4]

We neither dine together with thee nor make good.

'T is for thee only, brahmin, 't is only for thee!'

'The king and his court believe that Gotama the recluse is an Arahant.

And yet Master Gotama can indulge in wrath!'[5]

[The Exalted One:—]

Whence[6] should wrath rise for him who, void of wrath,
Holds on the even tenour of his way,
Self-tamed, serene, by highest insight free?

Worse of the two is he who, when reviled,
Reviles again. Who doth not, when reviled,
Revile again, a two-fold victory wins.
Both of the other and himself he seeks
The good; for he the other's angry mood
Doth understand and groweth calm and still.

He who of both is a physician, since
Himself he healeth and the other too,—
Folk deem him fool, they knowing not the Norm.

When he had so said, Reviler of the Bhāradvājas spake thus:

'Most excellent, lord, most excellent!

Just as if a man were to set up that which had been thrown down,
or were to reveal that which was hidden away,
or were to point out the right road to him who had gone astray,
or were to bring a lamp into the darkness so that those who had eyes could see external objects
— even so, lord, has the lord Gotama shown me his doctrine in various ways.

I even I, lord, betake myself to the Exalted One as my refuge,
to the Norm
and to the Order.

I would leave the world under [the Rule of] Gotama;
I would take orders.'

So the Bhāradvāja brahmin left the world under the Exalted One, and was ordained.

And not long after his ordination the venerable Bhāradvāja,
remaining alone and separate,
earnest,
ardent and strenuous,
attained [ere long] to that supreme goal of the higher life,
for the sake of which the clansmen rightly go forth from home into the homeless;
yea, that supreme goal did he by himself,
even in this present life,
come to understand and realize.

He came to understand that rebirth was destroyed,
that the holy life was being lived,
that his task was done,
that for life as we conceive it there was no hereafter.

And the venerable Bhāradvāja became one of the Arahants.

 


[1] According to B. this soubriquet was bestowed on him by those who organized the Councils (sangītikārehi) to distinguish him (there are several Bhāradvājas in the records of early Buddhism) as the author of a lampoon of 500 verses aimed against the Buddha.

[2] Apparently the head of the clan (and presumably the convert of the preceding Sutta). 'My eldest brother being induced to follow the Samana Gotama is a loss to us, breaking up our party (pakkho).' Comy.

[3] 'Saying, thou thief! thou fool! ... thou camel! ... thou ass! the ten bases of abuse.' Comy.

[4] So the Comy. explains these terms: ekato bhuñjati; katassa paṭikāraṃ kāroti.

[5] Bimbisara was a patron of the Sakyan (Buddhist) Order. But Reviler, says B., misunderstanding the repetition ''Tis for thee only ...' imagines that the Buddha, like an insulted seer of the traditional kind, was pronouncing a curse on him (and not merely showing that curses, such as the brahmin's, 'come home to roost').

[6] These verses occur in Theragātha (Pss. of the Brethren, 441-4), where they are ascribed to Brahmādatta, a son of Pasenadi.


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