Don't let the gloves intimidate you; the gloves are off.

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Winds in the Upper Atmosphere[1]

There are Winds in the upper atmosphere, Beggars,
that will tear some small bird that wanders there
limb from limb
in the same way as a hurricane can ...
so that here is a wing,
here the breast bones,
there a foot,
there the tail feathers
and there also, the head.

In the same way, Beggars,
some Beggar here,
setting out on his trek for food,
not having enveloped himself in satisfaction,
without having set a guard
at the doors of the senses,
wanders into town
and there,
having dressed recklessly in the morning,
with her blouse
incompletely protecting her charms from view,
and dancing at some gathering place,
is the fairest lass in the land.

Imagine, Beggars,
the fairest lass in the land:

She is not too tall.
She is not too short.
She is not too dark.
She is not too pale.
She is not too fat.
She is not too thin.
She is not overly busty.
She is not underly busty.
Her thighs are warm in the winter,
Cool in the summer.
She is just 16,
In the very first flower of her youth,
With a Beauty just touching on the divine
... soft is the touch of the down
on the arms
of the fairest lass in the land.

Then imagine, Beggars,
the din and clamor of the throng
as she laughs, and sings, and dances,
displaying her youthful charms.

with his bowl brim-full-up

And then imagine, Beggars,
that beggar as he comes along,
with his bowl brim full up
and Mara,
track'n close behind,
with sword uplifted,
tell'n 'im:

"That's the way, Man,
carry on that way!
But remember!
Spill even onesoma drop-a apo liquid
from that brim full upsoma bowl there ...
and it's off with your head!"

What do you think, Beggars?
Would that lass,
seeing that,
not laugh, and sing, and dance
with even greater abandon?

And that Beggar, Beggars,
not having enveloped himself in satisfaction,
not having set a guard
at the door of the senses,
is torn apart with lust there and then,
and returning to his hut,
he renounces the training
and returns to the lower life.
... and one here gets his kit bag,
and one gets his strainer,
and one his robes,
and he also, his bowl.

Wherefore, Beggars:
train yourselves this way:
"We shall envelope ourselves in satisfaction,
and set a guard
at the doors of the senses,
and not let lust
get a hold on our hearts!"


[1] A blending of bits from different suttas as I Hear Tell. An example of a phenomena found frequently in the suttas where one passage echoes another. One advantage for us of having the complete cannon to view.




SN 5.47.20
SN 2.17.22
JĀT. 1.96

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