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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 11

Ayoniso (or Vitakkita) Suttaɱ

Want of Method (or Fancies)

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



[11.1][than] THUS HAVE I HEARD: —

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

And at that time
that brother was occupied
during his siesta
with evil and wrongful thoughts,
to wit, with sensual, malevolent, and cruel thoughts.

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

"Thou hast no thorough method in thy thought,[1]
Good sir, and hence art thou inebriate[2]
With thine ideas. Renounce these muddled ways.
Marshall thy thoughts in ordered governance
Anent the Master, Norm, and Brotherhood;
From virtue's code let there be no recoil.
So shalt thou reach [the goal of] joy, of zest
And bliss and full assurance.[3] Thence in joy
Abounding thou shalt make an end of i11.

Then that brother, agitated by the deva,
was greatly moved.


[1] It is never easy to find fit rendering for the important idiom [a]yoniso manasikāra. See p. 131, and cf. my Buddhist Psychology (1914), 123,160, and cf. the attempt in Pss. of the Brethren, ver. 269, etc.

Thereat arose in me the deeper thought: —
Attention to the fact and to the cause.

Yoni is matrix, source; yoniso is 'from' or 'qua' yoni (the ablative). The other word (in the Suttas) is just 'work of mind.' B. often paraphrases *ayoniso by an-upāya, with [out] method, plan, system. 'Muddled ways' = a-yoniɱ.

[2] Majjasi. The indicative, as here, very rarely occurs.

[3] Lit. the negative form: 'rid of doubt' (a-saṅsayo).

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