Khuddaka Nikāya

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Canto I.
Psalms of Single Verses


Translated from the Pali by Mrs. C.A.F. Rhys Davids.


Public Domain


He in this Buddha-age was reborn, in consequence of his actions,[1] in a despised class, as one of a clan of watchmen in a cemetery at Sāvatthī. Converted by the preaching of the Thera Sopāka[2] his friend, he entered the Order and attained to the highest, declaring this in his psalm while he yet was striving for arahantship:

[37] [32] 0 would that I who hourly waste, might change[3]
For that which ne'er decays - who ever burn,
Might change for that cool bliss-e'en for the Peace
That passeth all, Safety beyond compare![4]


[1] Through pride and conceit when a bhikkhu in the Order of Kassapa Buddha. Apparently not the detractor of Dialogues, i. 1.


[3] The Commentary reads nimiyaɱ, and paraphrases by parivatteyyaɱ cetāpeyyaɱ (cf. Vin., iii. 219), and concludes: 'Just as men, exchanging any goods for which they care not, are greatly taken by what they get, even so this Brother, caring not for body or life (jīvitaɱ), strove after Nibbāna till he won.' 'Cool bliss' is nibbuta, on which, and on the last clause, see Sisters, p. 19, n. 4, and p. 13, n. 2, and p. 14, n. 2, respectively. This is one of the very few psalms which resemble our own anthologies in having a burden of the quest not yet won.

[4] Ultimate, perfect (anuttaro).


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