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Saɱyutta Nikāya
I. Sagātha Vagga
9. Vana-Saɱyutta

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
I. Kindred Sayings with Verses
9. The Forest Suttas

Sutta 10

Sajjhāya (or Dhamma) Suttaɱ

Diligence (or Doctrines)

Translated by Mrs. Rhys Davids
Assisted by Sūriyagoḍa Sumangala Thera
Copyright The Pali Text Society. Public Domain.




A certain brother was once staying among the Kosalese
in a certain forest-tract.

Now at that time this brother,
whose life had been one of exceeding and abundant diligence,
lived subsequently at ease,
given to silence,
and resigned.[1]

Then the deva who haunted that forest-tract,
moved with compassion for the brother,
desiring his welfare,
and wishing to agitate him,
drew near and addressed him in the verse: —

"0 almsman! why dost thou not con and study[2]
The doctrines all, while with the brethren biding.
Who learns the Norm winneth heart's satisfaction,
And in this life winneth men's commendation."

[The Brother: —]

"Ay, once was mine will to acquire those doctrines,
Until I met with that Pure thing and Holy.
Now since I met with that Pure thing and Holy,
And understood worth of what sense can teach us,
[One thing remained: —] laying all that on one side —
So would the good speak of it [not as slackness]."


[1] These three terms (appossukko, tuṇhībhūto, sankasāya) occur in conjunction three times in the Saɱyutta Nikāya, and, I think, nowhere else. S. ii, 177, they are also applied to the misunderstood conduct of a young arahant; S. iv, 178, they are applied to the snug security of a tortoise tucked up in its armour. On the third term see JPTS. 1909, p. 22.

[2] Virāgenāti ariyamaggena (the Ariyan Way to Salvation). Lit. with the passionless.

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