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Saɱyutta Nikāya
I. Sagātha Vagga
7. Brāhmana Saɱyutta

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
I. Kindred Sayings with Verses
7. The Brāhmana Suttas

Translated by Mrs. Rhys Davids
Assisted by Sūriyagoḍa Sumangala Thera
Public Domain



I: Arahants


Sutta 7

Suddhika Suttaɱ





When The Exalted One was once staying near Sāvatthī,
the Bhāradvāja [known as] 'Puritan'
came to visit the Exalted One,
and exchanging with him
the greetings and compliments of amity and courtesy,
took his seat at one side.

So seated, he addressed the Exalted One in a verse: —

"Though he be virtuous and penance work
There is in all the world no brahmin found,
Thus rendered pure.

'T is by the Veda-lore and by the course
His class lays down[2] that he is purified,
Unique 'mong men."[3]

[207] [The Exalted One: —]

"Nay, though he jabber multitudes of runes,
Thus is no brahmin made regenerate,[4]
Garbage-defiled within, propped by deceits.

But be he noble, brahmin, commoner,
Or labouring man, or of a pariah class,
Who stirs up effort, puts forth all his strength,[5]
Advances with an ever vigorous stride,
He may attain the Purity Supreme.
Brahmin, know this!"

When he had thus spoken, Puritan said:

"Most excellent, lord, most excellent!

Just as if a man were to set up
that which had been thrown down,
or were to reveal
that which was hidden away,
or were to point out the right road
to him who had gone astray,
or were to bring a lamp into the darkness
so that those who had eyes could see external objects
— even so, lord, has the lord Gotama
shown me his doctrine in various ways.

I even I, lord, betake myself
to the Exalted One as my refuge,
to the Norm
and to the Order.

I would leave the world
under [the Rule of] Gotama;
I would take orders."

So the Bhāradvāja brahmin left the world under the Exalted One,
and was ordained.

And not long after his ordination
the venerable Bhāradvāja,
remaining alone and separate,
ardent and strenuous,
attained [ere long] to that supreme goal of the higher life,
for the sake of which the clansmen rightly go forth from home into the homeless;
yea, that supreme goal did he by himself,
even in this present life,
come to understand and realize.

He came to understand that
rebirth was destroyed,
that the holy life was being lived,
that his task was done,
that for life as we conceive it
there was no hereafter.

And the venerable Bhāradvāja became one of the Arahants.


[1] B. assigns a similar source to this soubriquet. [SN 1.7.6 n.1]

[2] B. explains caraṇa as gotta-caraṇa.

[3] Freely rendered. Lit. 'No other second race' (of men), but the readings vary. The Comy. explains: 'the Three-Veda brahmin is made pure, but this other-named race is not made pure.'

[4] Na jaccā hoti

[5] See II, 2, § 5 and IX, § 2; = Pss. of the Brethren, vers. 156, 353.

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