Khuddaka Nikāya

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Canto II.
Psalms of Two Verses


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

Public Domain



Reborn in this Buddha-age at Benares, in a brahmin's family and named Somamitta, he became an expert in the three Vedas, but was converted by the Thera Vimala[1] and took orders. He dwelt near the Thera, fulfilling his duties. But the latter was given to sloth and torpor. And Somamitta, thinking 'Who can be virtuous near a sluggard?' [122] went to Kassapa the Great,[2] and attending his lectures, established insight, aud soon after attained arahantship. Thereupon he rebuked Vimala in these verses:

[147] As one who, mounted on a puny plank,
Is in mid-ocean whelm'd beneath the waves,
So even he of blameless life doth sink,
When thrown together with the man of sloth;
Wherefore from such an one keep well apart
The sluggard and the poor in energy.

[148] Dwell thou with them who live aloof,
With wise, with noble souls who have renounced,
Who in rapt contemplation ever strive.[3]

Hearing him, Thera Vimala was deeply moved, and establishing insight, bestirred himself to win salvation, the which he will be seen hereafter to attain.


[1] Cf. the Vimala of CLXXXV., who was also of Benares.

[2] I.e., to Rājagaha (CCLXI).

[3] Repeated in CLXXXV.


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