Khuddaka Nikāya

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Canto IV.
Psalms of Four Verses


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

Public Domain



Reborn in this Buddha-age at Sāvatthī in a wealthy clan, and named Candana, he lived a domestic life till he [184] heard the Master preach the Norm; and became thereupon a Stream-winner.[1] When a child was born to him, he left his home for the Order, and taking an insight exercise, dwelt in the forest. Coming into Sāvatthī to salute the Master, he stayed in a charnel-field. And his wife, hearing of his coming, adorned herself, and, taking her child and many attendants, approached him, judging that by her attractions she could induce him to secede from the Order. He, seeing her coming from afar, thought: 'Now will I get outside her reach!' And he so conjured up insight that he acquired sixfold abhiññā. Thereupon he rose aloft, and so taught her the Norm, establishing her in the Refuges and the Precepts. Then he went back to his former haunts. And when his bhikkhu comrades asked him, saying, 'Serene are you looking, brother; what truths have you discerned?'[2] he told of his achievement, and testified to aññā in these verses:

[299] In golden gear bedecked, a troop of maids
Attending in her train, bearing the babe
Upon her hip, my wife drew near to me.

[300] I marked her coming, mother of my child,
In brave array like snare of Māra laid.

[301] Thereat arose in me the deeper thought:[3]
Attention to the fact and to the cause.
The misery of it all was manifest;
Distaste, indifference the mind possessed;

[302] And so my heart was set at liberty.
O see the seemly order of the Norm!
The Threefold Wisdom have I made my own,
And all the Buddha bids me do is done.


[1] Or convert.

Hagiology. OED: The literature that treats of the lives and legends of saints.

p.p. explains it all — p.p.

[2] Kacci tayā saccāni paṭividdhānīti? I commend this noble question to the attention of students in comparative hagiology.

[3] Repeating verses 269, 270.


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