Aŋguttara Nikāya


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Aŋguttara-Nikāya
III. Tika Nipāta
VI. Brāhmaṇa Vagga

The Book of the Gradual Sayings
or
More-Numbered Suttas

III. The Book of the Threes
VI. The Brāhmins

Sutta 58

Tikaṇṇa Suttaɱ

Tikaṇṇa[1]

Translated from the Pali by
F.L. Woodward, M.A.

Copyright The Pali Text Society
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[163] [145]

[1][bodh] Thus have I heard:

On a certain occasion the Exalted One was staying near Sāvatthī.[ed1]

Now Tikaṇṇa the brahmin came to visit the Exalted One.

On coming to him he greeted him courteously and sat down at one side.

As he sat [146] at one side
in presence of tbe Exalted One,
Tikaṇṇa, the brahmin, sang the praises
of those brahmins who possess the threefold lore.[2]

(Then said the Exalted One:)

"Yes, brahmin, they have the threefold lore, those brahmins.

They have it, as you say.

But tell me how brahmins describe
brahmins who have the threefold lore."

"In this case, master Gotama,
a brahmin is well born on both sides,
of pure descent[3] from mother and father
as far back as seven generations,
unsmirched,
without reproach in respect of birth,
one given to study,
one who knows the charms by heart,
a past master in the three Vedas,
the indexes together with the ritual,[4]
the treatise on phonology (as fourth)
and the legendary sayings (as fifth):
he is a man learned in the idioms[5]
and the grammar,
one perfect in the science of world-speculation
and the signs of the great being.[6]

That, master Gotama,
is how the brahmins describe
a brahmin who has the threefold lore."

"Well, brahmin, this description
of a brahmin who has the threefold lore is one thing.

The description of him who has the threefold lore
in the discipline of the Ariyan
is quite another thing."

"But how, master Gotama,
is one the possessor of the threefold lore
in the discipline of the Ariyan?

Well for me if the worthy Gotama would teach me
according to what method he is so possessed!"

"Then, brahmin, do you listen.

Apply your mind attentively.

I will speak."

(§ ii) "Very well, master,"
replied Tikaṇṇa the brahmin to the Exalted One.

The Exalted One said:

[147] "Herein a monk,[7] aloof from sensuality,
aloof from evil states,
enters on the first musing
which is accompanied by thought directed and sustained,
born of solitude,
zestful
and easeful,
and abides therein.

Then, by the calming down of thought directed and sustained,
he enters on that inward calm,
that one-pointedness of mind,
apart from thought directed and sustained,
that is born of mental balance,
zestful
and easeful,
which is the second musing,
and abides therein.

Then, by the fading out of zest,
he abides indifferent,
mindful and composed,
and experiences ease through the body.

Having entered on the third musing,
which the Ariyans describe in these terms:

'He who is indifferent and mindful dwells happily,' -

he abides therein.

Then, by the abandoning of ease,
by the abandoning of discomfort,
by the ending of the happiness and unhappiness
that he had before,
entering on that state
which is neither pleasant nor painful,
that utter purity of mindfulness
reached by indifference,
which is the fourth musing,
he abides therein.

(§ iii) He then, with mind thus composed,
made pure and translucent,
stainless and with its taints vanished away,
made pliant and workable,
fixed and unperturbed,
(applies and)[8] bends down his mind
to acquiring knowledge of his former births.

In divers ways he recalls his former births, thus:

One birth,
two births,
three, four, five,
ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty,
a hundred,
a thousand,
a hundred thousand births:
the various destructions of aeons,
the various renewals of aeons,
both the destructions and renewals of eons, thus:

'I lived there,
was named thus,
was of such a clan,
of such a caste,
was thus supported,
had such and such pleasant and painful experiences,
had such length of days,
disappeared thence
and arose elsewhere:
there too I lived,
was named thus,
was of such a clan,
of such a caste,
was thus supported,
had such and such pleasant and painful experiences,
had such length of days,
disappeared thence
and arose elsewhere.'

Thus he calls to mind
in all their specific details,
in all their characteristics,
in many various ways,
his previous states of existence.

[148] This is tbe first knowledge be attains.

Ignorance has vanished,
knowledge arises.

Gone is the darkness,
arisen is the light,
as it does for one who abides earnest,
ardent
and composed in the self.

(§ iv) He then, with mind thus composed,
made pure and translucent,
stainless and with its taints vanished away,
made pliant and workable,
fixed and unperturbed,
(applies and) bends down his mind
to acquiring knowledge of the fall and rise of beings
from one existence to another.

With the deva-sight,
purified and surpassing that of men,
he beholds beings deceasing
and rising up again,
beings both mean and excellent,
fair and foul,
gone to a happy state,
gone to a woeful state
according to their deeds
(so as to say):

'Alas! these worthies,[9]
given to the practice of evil deeds,
of evil words,
of evil thoughts,
scoffing at the Noble Ones,
of perverted views
and reaping the fruits of their perverted views, -
these beings,
on the dissolution of body after death
arose again in the Waste,
the Woeful Way,
the Downfall,
in Purgatory!'

Or:

'Ah, these worthies,
given to the practice of good deeds,
of good words,
of good thoughts,
not scoffing at the Noble Ones,
but of sound views
and reaping the fruits of their sound views, -
these beings,
on the dissolution of the body after death
arose again in the Happy Lot,
in the Heaven World.'

Thus with the deva-sight,
purified and surpassing that of men,
he beholds beings deceasing
and rising up again,
beings both mean and excellent,
fair and foul,
gone to a happy state,
gone to a woeful state
according to their deeds.

This is the second knowledge he attains.

Ignorance has vanished,
knowledge arises.

Gone is the darkness,
arisen is the light,
as it does for one who abides earnest,
ardent
and composed in the self.

(§ v) He then, with mind thus composed,
made pure and translucent,
stainless and with its taints vanished away,
made pliant and workable,
fixed and unperturbed,
(applies and) bends down his mind
to acquiring knowledge of the destruction of the āsavas.

He recognizes, as it really is, the truth that:

This is ill.

He recognizes, as it really is, the truth that:

This is the arising of ill.

He recognizes, as it really is, the truth that:

This is the ending of ill.

He recognizes, as it really is, the truth that:

This is the practice that leads to the ending of ill.

He recognizes, as it really is:

These are āsavas.

He recognizes, as it really is:

This is the arising of the āsavas.

He recognizes, as it really is:

This is the practice that leads to the destruction of the āsavas.

In him, thus knowing,
thus seeing,
his mind is [149] released from the asava of sensuality:
his mind is released from the asava of becoming,
from the asava of nescience.

By release comes the knowledge that he is released,
so that he understands:

'Destroyed is rebirth,
lived is the righteous life,
done is what I had to do,
there is no more for me of this state of things.'

This is the third knowledge he attains.

Ignorance has vanished,
knowledge arises.

Gone is the darkness,
arisen is the light,
as it does for one who abides earnest,
ardent
and composed in the self.

Changeless in virtue, shrewd and meditative,
With mind subdued, one-pointed, tranquillized,
That sage who, scattering darkness, hath attained
The threefold lore and routed Death, - men call
'A blessing both to devas and mankind,'
'All-vanquisher,'[10] 'Blest with the threefold lore,'
'No more bewildered,' 'One become enlightened,'
And 'Wearing his last body in the world.'
Such are the names men give that Gotama.
To know his former birth, see heaven and hell,
To have attained destruction of rebirth, -[11]
If any brahmin hath this threefold lore,
Master of supernormal[12] power, a sage,
That is the one I call 'Tevijja-brahmin,'
Not one so called by men in empty words.[13]

That, brahmin, is how one possesses
the threefold lore
in the discipline of the Ariyan."

"Indeed, master Gotama,
this one is quite different from the other!

Why! master Gotama,
he who has the threefold lore of the brahmins
is not worth one-sixteenth part of him
[150] who hath it in the discipline of the Ariyan.

Excellent it is, master Gotama!

Excellent it is, master Gotama!

Just as if one should raise what is overthrown,
or show forth what is hidden,
or point out the way
to him that wanders astray,
or hold up a light in the darkness
so that they who have eyes may behold objects, —
even so in divrs ways
hath the Norm been set forth by the Exalted One.[ed2]

May the worthy Gotama accept me as a lay-follower from this time forth so long as life lasts, as one who has taken refuge in him."

 


[1] I have not met this name ('triangular' or 'three-eared') elsewhere.

[2] Tevijja. Cf. Brethr. 29; Sisters, 26; K.S. i, 184 n.

[3] Saŋsuddha-gahaṇika. Cf. D. i, 113; Dialog. i, 146.

[4] Sa-nighaṇḍu-keṭubhānaɱ. Cf. D. i, 88; Dialog. i, 109. Comy. Nāma-nighaṇḍu rukkhādīnaɱ vevacana-pakāsakaɱ satthaɱ (Childers gives Abhidāna-ppadīpīka as an example of such a vocabulary). Keṭubha = kiriyākappa-vikappo kavīnaɱ upakārāya satthaɱ.

[5] Padako = padaɱ tadavasesañ ca vyākaraṇaɱ adhiyati vedeti vā. Comy.

[6] Lokāyata-mahāpurisa-lakkhaṇesu. For the latter see Dialog. iii, 137; M. ii, 210.

[7] Cf. D. i, 73 ff. (Samannaphala Sutta); Dialog. i, 84 ff.; Pugg. 60; K.S. v, 272.

[8] With Pugg. our text omits abhinīharati of D. in each para.

[9] Ime vā pana bhonito. D. reads ime vata bhonto (trans. there as sirs' but in Dialog. iii as equal to messieurs ces êtres, which I follow).

[10] Reading with Comy. sabba-pahāyinaɱ for sacca-p. of text.

[11] These three lines occur at S. i, 167; in part at Sn. v, 647. Text yo vedī. Comy. prefers yo veti = yo aveti, avagacchati, but gives our reading.

[12] Abhiññā-vosito. Cf. It. 47.

[13] Cf. Dialog. i, 15 n.

 


[ed1] This sutta has no nidana, but begins 'There, then ..." The BJT seems to indicate that this entire vagga was given at Sāvatthi, so that Nidana has been used here.

[ed2] Woodward abridges here with no previous version in this book. This has been copied from SN 4.42.002


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