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Saɱyutta Nikāya
II. Nidāna Vagga
21. Bhikkhu Saɱyutta

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
II. The Book Called the Nidāna-Vagga
Containing Kindred sayings on Cause
and Other Subjects
21. Kindred Sayings about Brethren

Sutta 11

Mahā Kappina Suttaɱ


Translated by Mrs. Rhys Davids
Assisted by F. L. Woodward

Originally Published by
The Pali Text Society
Public Domain


[284] [193]

[1][bodh] Thus have I heard:

The Exalted One was once staying near Savatthī
at the Jeta Grove in Anāthapiṇḍika's Park.

[2] Now the venerable Mahā-Kappina[1] came into the presence of the Exalted One.

[3] The Exalted One saw him coming while afar,
and seeing him he called the brethren:—

[194] [4] "Do you see, brethren,
that brother coming to us,
pale, thin, with a prominent nose?"

"Even so, lord."

[5] "That brother is highly gifted, brethren,
of wondrous power.
No easy matter is it
to win that which he formerly had not won,
even that for the sake of which clansmen
rightly leave the home for the homeless,
even that uttermost goal of the divine living
which he has attained,
wherein he abides,
having come just here and now
to know it thoroughly for himself
and to realize it."

[6] The Exalted One spake this.



The Wellfarer so saying,
the Master spake this yet further: —

The noble is the best among the folk
Who put their trust in lineage.
But one in wisdom and in virtue clothed
Is best of all 'mong spirits and men.[2]

By day the sun shines and by night the moon.
In armor shines the warrior; ardent, rapt,
The brahmin shines, but through both day and night
Shineth the Buddha's glowing (love for men).[3]


[1] See Pss. of the Brethren, p. 254 f. for his story and verses; also p. 366. B. gives the same story here, a somewhat amplified version.

[2] Dialogues iii, 94.

[3] Dhammapada, verse 387; cf. above, i. 22, 67. These are simple ideas in simple Pali. I cannot give the play on words in jhāyi, which means both burning and meditating, save that 'ardent' has an analogous double meaning. 'Glowing love for men' is freely rendered. Tejo also bears a double meaning, like 'ardent.' It means both 'heat' and that efflux of feeling and will for which we have no word as yet, but which Jesus meant by 'virtue,' and we mean by 'vim.'

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