Anguttara Nikaya


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A'nguttara-Nikaaya
III. Tikanipaata
XIV. Yodhaajiiva Vagga

The Book of the
Gradual Sayings
or
More-Numbered Suttas

Part III
The Book of the Threes

Chapter XIV. The Fighting-Man

Sutta 138

Assasadassaa Sutta.m

Thoroughbreds

Translated from the Pali by
F.L. Woodward, M.A.

Copyright The Pali Text Society
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[268]

[1] THUS HAVE I HEARD

Once the Exalted One was dwelling near Saavatthii.

There the Exalted One addressed the monks, saying:

'Monks.'

'Yes, lord,' they replied, and the Exalted One said:

'Monks, I will teach you
the three thoroughbreds[1] among steeds
and the three human thoroughbreds.

Do ye listen to it.

Apply your minds earnestly
and I will speak.'

'Yes, lord,' replied those monks to the Exalted One.

The Exalted One said:

'Now, monks, what are the three thoroughbreds among steeds?

Herein a certain thoroughbred
is gifted with speed,
but not gifted with beauty,
not with gifted good proportions.

Herein also a thoroughbred
is gifted with speed,
gifted with beauty,
but not gifted with good proportions.

Likewise we have a certain thoroughbred
gifted with speed,
gifted with beauty,
and gifted with good proportions.

These are the three sorts of thoroughbred.

2. Now, monks, what are the three human thoroughbreds?

Herein we have a certain human thoroughbred
gifted with speed,
but not gifted with beauty,
not with gifted good proportions.

Herein we have a certain human thoroughbred
gifted with speed,
gifted with beauty,
but not gifted with good proportions.

Likewise we have a certain human thoroughbred
gifted with speed,
gifted with beauty,
and gifted with good proportions.

3. Now how is a human thoroughbred
gifted with speed
but not gifted with beauty,
not gifted with good proportions?

Herein a monk,
by destroying the five fetters
that bind to the lower worlds,[2]
is reborn spontaneously,
there finally to pass away;
his nature is to return from that world no more.

This I call his 'speed.'

But if he be asked a question
about extra doctrine
or extra discipline,
he falters,
he cannot solve it.

This failure I call his 'lack of beauty.'

And suppose that he fails to get offerings
of robes and alms-food,
lodging,
extras
and necessary medicines.

This I call his 'lack of good proportions.'

Thus we have among men
a thoroughbred gifted with speed,
but not gifted in beauty
and not gifted in good proportions.

4. And how is a human thoroughbred[3]
gifted with speed
and gifted with beauty
but not gifted in good proportions?

Herein a monk,
by destroying the five fetters
that bind to the lower worlds,
is reborn spontaneously,
there finally to pass away;
his nature is to return from that world no more.

This I call his 'speed.'

When he is put a question
on extra doctrine and extra discipline,
he solves it,
he does not falter.

This I call his 'gift of beauty.'

Yet he fails to get offerings
of robes and alms-food,
lodging,
extras
and necessary medicines.

This I call his 'lack of good proportions.'

Thus we have among men a thoroughbred
gifted with speed
and gifted with beauty
but not gifted in good proportions

[269] 5. And how is a human thoroughbred
gifted with speed
and gifted with beauty
and gifted in good proportions?

Herein a monk,
by destroying the five fetters
that bind to the lower worlds,
is reborn spontaneously,
there finally to pass away;
his nature is to return from that world no more.

This I call his 'speed.'

When he is put a question
on extra doctrine and extra discipline,
he solves it,
he does not falter.

This I call his 'gift of beauty.'

Herein he does not fail to get offerings
of robes and alms-food,
lodging,
extras
and necessary medicines.

This I call his 'gift of good proportions.'

In this way, monks, a thoroughbred among men is
gifted with speed
and gifted with beauty
and gifted in good proportions

These are the three sorts of thoroughbred among men.'

 


[1] Assa-sadassa (sa-d-°, or sat-, sant-assa), much the same as aajaaniiya.

[2] Orambhaagiya, cf. K.S. v, passim.

[3] Text wrongly adds bhikkhu here.


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