Anguttara Nikaya


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Anguttara Nikaaya
Chakkanipata
V. Dhammika vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
The Book of the Sixes
Chapter V: Dhammika

Migasaalaa Sutta.m

Sutta 44

Migasaalaa[1]

Translated from the Pali by E.M. Hare.

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[1]Thus have I heard:

One morning the venerable Aananda,
robing early,
took bowl and cloak
and went to the house of the lay-diseiple, Migasaalaa,
and there sat down on seat made ready.

And Migasaalaa came
and saluted him
and sat down at one side.

So seated, she said to the venerable Aananda:

'Pray, reverend sir,
how ought one to understand this Dhamma
taught by the Exalted One:
that both he who lives the godly life
and he who does not
shall become like-wayfarers
in the world to come?

My father, sir, Puraa.na,[2]
lived the godly life,
dwelling apart,
abstaining from common,
carnal things;
and when he died,
the Exalted One explained:

He's a Once-returner,
dwelling in Tusita.

My unde,[3] sir, Isidatta,
did not live the godly life
but rejoiced with a wife;
and of him also,
when dead,
the Exalted One said:

He's a Once-returaer,
dwelling in Tusita.

Reverend Aananda, how ought one to understand this Dhamma
taught by the Exalted One:
that both he who lives the godly life
and he who does not
shall become like-wayfarers
in the world to come?

'Even, sister, as the Exalted One has said.'[4]

 


 

'And when the venerable Aananda had received alms in Migasaalaa's house,
he rose from his seat and departed.

Now on his return from alms-gathering,
after his meal,
the venerable Aananda visited the Exalted One,
saluted him
[247] and sat down at one side;
and so seated,
he said this to the Exalted One:

This morning, lord, robing early,
I took bowl and cloak
and went to the house of the lay-diseiple, Migasaalaa,
and there sat down on seat made ready.

And Migasaalaa came
and saluted me
and sat down at one side.

So seated, she said to me:

'Pray, reverend sir,
how ought one to understand this Dhamma
taught by the Exalted One:
that both he who lives the godly life
and he who does not
shall become like-wayfarers
in the world to come?

My father, sir,
lived the godly life,
dwelling apart,
abstaining from common,
carnal things;
and when he died,
the Exalted One explained:

He's a Once-returner,
dwelling in Tusita.

My unde, sir, Isidatta,
did not live the godly life
but rejoiced with a wife;
and of him also,
when dead,
the Exalted One said:

He's a Once-returaer,
dwelling in Tusita.

Reverend Aananda, how ought one to understand this Dhamma
taught by the Exalted One:
that both he who lives the godly life
and he who does not
shall become like-wayfarers
in the world to come?

'I told her, lord,
to understand the matter
even as the Exalted One had explained.'

 


 

'But, Aananda, who is the lay-disciple, Migasaalaa -
a foolish,
frail,
motherly body
with but mother-wit -
to understand the diversity in the person of man?[5]

These six persons, Aananda, are found in the world.

What six?

Consider, Aananda, one
well restrained,
a comely person,
in whose company
his fellows in the godly life
take pleasure;
yet in whom hearing (Dhamma) is of none effect,
much learning is of none effect,[6]
in whom there is no view-penetration,
who wins not temporary release[7] -
he, on the breaking up of the body after death,
sets out to fall,
not to excel;
fares to a fall,
fares not to excellence.

Consider another
well restrained,
a comely person,
in whose company
his fellows in the godly life
take pleasure;
but in whom hearing (Dhamma) has effect,
much learning has effect,
in whom there is view-penetration,
who wins temporary release -
he, on the breaking up of the body after death,
sets out to excel,
not to fall;
fares to excellence,
not to a fall.

And the measurers measure them, saying:

"His stature[8] is just this,
the other's just that;
in what way is[9] one wanting,
one exalted?"

And that measuring, Aananda,
is to the measurers' harm and hurt
for many a day.

Now the one
well restrained,
a comely person,
in whose company
his fellows in the godly life
take pleasure;
but in whom hearing (Dhamma) has effect,
much learning has effect,
in whom there is view-penetration,
who wins temporary release -
that person, Aananda,
has marched further forward,
is more exalted than the former.

And why [248] is that?

The stream of Dhamma carries him forward,[10] Aananda.

But who save the Tathaagata
can judge that difference?[11]

Wherefore, Aananda,
be no measurer of persons;
measure not the measure of persons;
verily, Aananda,
he digs[12] a pit for himself
who measures the measure of persons.

I alone, Aananda,
can measure their measure -
or one like me.

 


 

Consider, Aananda, a person
in whom wrath and pride are conquered,
but in whom greed
from time to time surges;
yet in whom hearing (Dhamma) is of none effect,
much learning is of none effect,
in whom there is no view-penetration,
who wins not temporary release -
he, on the breaking up of the body after death,
sets out to fall,
not to excel;
fares to a fall,
fares not to excellence.

Consider another person
in whom wrath and pride are conquered,
but in whom greed
from time to time surges;
but in whom hearing (Dhamma) has effect,
much learning has effect,
in whom there is view-penetration,
who wins temporary release -
he, on the breaking up of the body after death,
sets out to excel,
not to fall;
fares to excellence,
not to a fall.

And the measurers measure them, saying:

"His stature is just this,
the other's just that;
in what way is one wanting,
one exalted?"

And that measuring, Aananda,
is to the measurers' harm and hurt
for many a day.

Now the one
in whom wrath and pride are conquered,
but in whom greed
from time to time surges;
but in whom hearing (Dhamma) has effect,
much learning has effect,
in whom there is view-penetration,
who wins temporary release -
that person has marched further forward,
is more exalted than the former.

And why is that?

The stream of Dhamma carries him forward, Aananda.

But who save the Tathaagata
can judge that difference?

Wherefore, Aananda,
be no measurer of persons;
measure not the measure of persons;
verily, Aananda,
he digs a pit for himself
who measures the measure of persons.

I alone, Aananda,
can measure their measure -
or one like me.

 


 

Consider one
in whom wrath and pride are conquered,
but in whom the whirl[13] of words
from time to time surges;
yet in whom hearing (Dhamma) is of none effect,
much learning is of none effect,
in whom there is no view-penetration,
who wins not temporary release -
he, on the breaking up of the body after death,
sets out to fall,
not to excel;
fares to a fall,
fares not to excellence.

Consider another and another
in whom wrath and pride are conquered,
but in whom the whirl of words
from time to time surges;
but in whom hearing (Dhamma) has effect,
much learning has effect,
in whom there is view-penetration,
who wins temporary release -
he, on the breaking up of the body after death,
sets out to excel,
not to fall;
fares to excellence,
not to a fall.

And the measurers measure them, saying:

"His stature is just this,
the other's just that;
in what way is one wanting,
one exalted?"

And that measuring, Aananda,
is to the measurers' harm and hurt
for many a day.

Now the one
in whom wrath and pride are conquered,
but in whom the whirl of words
from time to time surges;
but in whom hearing (Dhamma) has effect,
much learning has effect,
in whom there is view-penetration,
who wins temporary release -,
is more exalted than the former.

And why is that?

The stream of Dhamma carries him forward, Aananda.

But who save the Tathaagata
can judge that difference?

Wherefore, Aananda,
be no measurer of persons;
measure not the measure of persons;
verily, Aananda,
he digs a pit for himself
who measures the measure of persons.

I alone, Aananda,
can measure their measure -
or one like me.

 


 

And who is the lay-diseiple, Migasaalaa -
a foolish,
frail,
motherly body
with but mother-wit -
to understand the diversity
in the person of man?

Verily, Aananda,
these six persons are found in the world.

Bhk. Bodhi [here and in AN 10.75] has made better sense of this this than either Woodward or Hare:
"...if Isidatta had possessed the same kind of virtuous behavior that Puraa.na had, Puraa.na could not have even known his destination. And if Puraa.na had possessed the same kind of wisdom that Isidatta had, Isidatta could not have even known his destination. In this way, Aananda, these two persons were each deficient in one respect."
by "not even known his destination" is meant that had the deficient quality been present, that one would have become Arahant.

p.p. explains it all - p.p.

Aananda, with such virtue as Puraa.na was endowed,
Isidatta may become endowed;
herein Puraa.na fares not Isidatta's way but another's:
with such insight as Isidatta was endowed,
Puraa.na may become endowed;
herein Isidatta fares not Puraa.na's way but another's.

Thus verily, Aananda,
both these men are wanting in one thing.

 


[1] Cf. the whole sutta with A. v, 137 ff.

[2] These two brothers were the rajah Pasenadi's chamberlains or chariot makers; see K.S. v, 303 ff.

[3] Text petteyyo piyo with S.e., see Childers; but at A. v, pettaapiyo with Tr. P.M. 62,16.

[4] Comy. observes that Aananda did not know the answer.

[5] The construction is peculiar (cf. A. iii, 237) Kaa ca Migasaalaa ... ambakaa, ambakapa~n~naa (Comy., S.e. and A. v, so for sa~n~naa) ke ca purisapuggala-paropariya~naa.ne (Cf. K.S. v, 270, § 10) Purisa-puggala is possibly a transition from the more honourable purisa to the puggala, male, adopted by the Sangha when 'the man' concept was worsening.

[6] Comy. ettha bahusacca.m vuccatii viriya.m viriyena kattabba-yuttaka.m akata.m hoti. (Cf. Locke's definition of 'effect': the substance produced into any subject by the exerting of power. - Webster's Eng. Dict.)

[7] Cf. above, p. 131, n. 1.

[8] Dhammaa.

[9] Kasmaa.

[10] Dhamma-soto nibbahati. Comy. Suura.m hutvaa pavattamaana.m vipassanaa~naa.na.m nibbhati, ariya-bhuumi.m sampaapeti. Nibbahati is either from \/.Hbarh, to increaae, or \/.Hvah, to carry, with nis, 'out,' 'to completion.'

[11] Reading tadantara.m, with S.e. and Comy. ta.m antara.m, ta.m kaara.na.m.

[12] Kha~n~nati. Comy. gu.na-kha.nana.m paapu.naati.

[13] Vacii-sanhhaaraa, speech activities; see Vism. 531, trsl. 633.


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