Khuddaka Nikāya

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Canto III.
Psalms of three Verses


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

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Reborn in this Buddha-age near the Himālaya, at the city of Ukkaṭṭha,[1] in the family of a very rich brahmin, he was named Angaṇika-Bhāradvāja.[2] And when he had learned all Vedic lore and art, his inclination for renunciation induced him to leave the world and carry on penance for salvation.[3] Wandering here and there, he met the Buddha Supreme on a country tour, and with satisfied mind heard him teach. Leaving his false ascetics, he took orders, and practising for insight, in due course acquired sixfold abhiññā.

Abiding thereafter in the bliss of liberty, he took compassion on his kinsfolk, and visited and taught them in the Refuges and the Precepts; then leaving them, he went to dwell in a forest near the village of Kuṇḍiya of the Kurus.[4]

[158] Going for some purpose to Uggāyāma, he was accosted by some brahmin acquaintances, who said: 'Master Bhāradvāja, what have you seen that you have left the brahmin communion for this community?' And he, showing that outside the Buddha's church there was no pure rule, said:

[219] Purity without principle my quest,
When in the grove I fostered sacred fire.
Painful the penances I wrought for heaven,
All ignorant of purity's true path.

[220] This happiness by happy ways is won[5] -
O see the seemly order of the Norm![6]
The threefold wisdom have I gotten now,
And all the Buddha's ordinance is done.

[221] Once but a son of brahmins born was I;[7]
To-day I stand brahmin in very deed,
Versed in the triple lore and graduate,[8]
By sacramental bathing consecrate.

Then those brahmins hearing him, expressed enthusiastic appreciation of the Sāsana.


[1] On this upland town (= 'lofty'), See Dialogues, i. 108. A road connected it with Setavyā (sup., p. 67; Ang., ii. 37) and with Vesālī (Jāt., ii. 259, text).

[2] There are about nineteen Bhāradvājas (a gens name) mentioned in the Piṭakas. This one is not met with elsewhere.

[3] That which, in the text, is amaraɱ tapaɱ ('penances ... for heaven') is, in the Commentary, rendered amatatapaɱ, amataɱ tapaɱ. The difference, etymologically, is that between 'undying' and 'not dead.' Both refer, probably, to reunion with the gods, as attainable by the penance of the five fires, etc. See sup., p. 120, and Dialogues, i 211.

[4] This will not be the Kuṇḍiya of the Koḷiyas (Udana, ii. 8; Jāt., i. No. 100). Uggāyāma is possibly the place Ugga of LXXX.

[5] Cf. LXIII.

[6] Cf. XXIV. He is addressing either the Norm or himself, says the Commentary, omitting the more probable 'or the brahmins.'

[7] Cf. p. 222; also the very similar lines, Sisters, verse 251 and note.

[8] The Commentary finds Sāsana-equivalents for all these terms of Vedic tradition.


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