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Saŋyutta Nikāya,
V: MahāVagga
51. Iddhipāda Saŋyutta
II. Pāsādakampana-vaggo dutiyo

Kindred Sayings on the Bases of Psychic Power
V: The Great Chapter
Chapter II: The Shaking of the Terraced House

Sutta 15

Brāhmaṇa Suttaɱ

The Brahmin

Translated by F. L. Woodward
Edited by Mrs. Rhys Davids

Copyright The Pali Text Society
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[1][than][olds]THUS have I heard:

On a certain occasion the venerable Ānanda was staying at Kosambī
in Ghosita Park.

Now the brahmin Uṇṇābha[1] came to visit the venerable Ānanda,
and on coming to him
greeted him courteously,
and after the exchange of greetings and courtesies
sat down at one side.

So seated
the brahmin Uṇṇābha said this to the venerable Ānanda:

"What is it, master Ānanda,
for which the holy life is lived
under Gotama the recluse?"

"For the sake of abandoning desire,[2] brahmin,
the holy life is lived
under the Exalted One."

"But is there any way,
is there any practice, master Ānanda,
for abandoning this desire?"

[244] "There is a way, brahmin,
there is a practice
for abandoning this desire."

"Pray, master Ānanda,
what is that way
and that practice?"

"Herein a monk cultivates that basis of psychic power
of which the features are
desire,
together with the co-factors
of concentration
and struggle.

He cultivates that basis of psychic power
of which the features are
energy,
together with the co-factors
of concentration
and struggle.

He cultivates that basis of psychic power
of which the features are
thought,
together with the co-factors
of concentration
and struggle.

He cultivates that basis of psychic power
of which the features are
investigation,
together with the co-factors
of concentration
and struggle.

This, brahmin, is the way,
this is the practice
for the abandoning of this sensual desire."

"If that be so, master Ānanda,
it were a task without end,
not one with an end.[3]

That he should get rid of one desire
by means of another desire
is an impossible thing."

"Then, brahmin, I will just question you in this matter.

Do you answer as you think fit.

Now what think you, brahmin?

Was there not previously
desire in you (urging you) thus:

'I will go to the Park'?

When you got to the Park,
was not that appropriate[4] desire abated?"

"Yes, indeed it was, master."

"Was there not previously
energy in you (urging you) thus:

'I will go to the Park'?

When you got there,
was not that appropriate energy abated?"

"Yes indeed, master."

"Was there not previously
work of thought in you (urging you) thus:

'I will go to the Park'?

When you got there,
was not that appropriate work of thought abated?"

"Yes indeed, master."

"Then again, was there not previously in you
consideration (which urged you) thus:

'I will go to the Park'?

When you got to the Park,
was not that appropriate consideration abated?"

[245] "Yes indeed, master."

"Very well then, brahmin.

That monk who is Arahant,
one in whom the āsavas are destroyed,
who has lived the life,
done the task,
lifted the burden,
who is a winner of his own welfare,
who has outworn the fetters of rebirth,
one who is released by perfect insight, -
that desire
which he had previously
to attain Arahantship,
now that Arahantship is won,
that appropriate desire is abated.

That energy
which was in him previously
for winning Arahantship,
now that Arahantship is won,
that appropriate energy is abated.

That work of thought for winning Arahantship
which he had before,
now that Arahantship is won,
that appropriate work of thought is abated.

That investigation
for winning Arahantship which he had before,
that appropriate investigation is abated,
now that Arahantship is won.

Now as to that,
what think you, brahmin?

Since this is so,
is it a task that has an end,
or is it endless?"

"Sure enough, master Ānanda,
since this is so,
it is a task that has an end.

It is not an endless task.

Excellent, master Ānanda!

Excellent, master Ānanda!

Just as if one should lift up the fallen,
discover the hidden,
point out the way to the bewildered,
show a light in the gloom, saying:

'Now they that have eyes to see||
can see objects,' -

even so in divers ways
has the Exalted One expounded the truth.

I, even I, lord,
do go for refuge to the Exalted One,
to the Norm
and to the Order of monks.

Let the worthy Ānanda accept me as a follower,
as one who from this time forth
even to life's end
hath gone to him for refuge."

 


[1] Cf. text, 217.

[2] Chanda, here in the sense of taṇhā, not of 'will,' which occurs alongside of it. Comy. idha taṇhā-chandassa pahān'atthaŋ. Mrs. Rhys Davids (Buddhism, p. 222-4) discusses it and quotes this passage (cf. Compendium, 244 n.): 'Desire belongs to our psychology of feeling + will, as a term of unmoral import, as such. Hence it seems to me most important to retain it for chanda ... which is only immoral as kāma-cchanda, or when substituted for taṇhā' (as here).

[3] Here santaka = sa-antaka, 'con-fined,' limited, opposite to an-antaka. I read with Sinh. MSS. anantakaŋ no santakaŋ (contrary to the order of the text), for the brahmin changes his views, is 'converted' at the end of the Sutta, where the order of words may stand. Comy. is silent here.

[4] Tajjo.


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