Majjhima Nikaya


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Majjhima Nikāya
II. Majjhima-Paṇṇāsa
3. Paribbājaka Vagga

The Middle Length Sayings
II. The Middle Fifty Discourses
3. The Division on Wanderers

Sutta 74

Māgandiya Suttaɱ

Discourse to Māgandiya

Translated from the Pali by I.B. Horner, M.A.
Associate of Newham College, Cambridge
First Published in 1954

Copyright The Pali Text Society
Commercial Rights Reserved
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[501] [181]

[1][chlm][than][ntbb][olds][upal] THUS have I heard:

At one time the Lord was staying among the Kurus -
the market town of the Kurus was called Kammāssadhamma -
on a spreading of grass in the fire-room[1] of a brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan.

Then the Lord, having dressed early in the morning,
taking his bowl and robe,
entered Kammāssadhamma for almsfood.

Having walked in Kammāssadhamma for almsfood,
returning from his alms-gathering after the meal,
having plunged into a forest thicket,
he sat down at the root of a tree
for the day-sojourn.

[502]Then the wanderer Māgandiya,
who was constantly pacing up and down and roaming about on foot,
approached the fire-room of the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan.

The wanderer Māgandiya saw the spreading of grass made ready in the fire-room of the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan;
seeing it, he spoke thus to the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan:

"For whom is this spreading of grass laid down in the good Bhāradvāja's fire-room?

It seems like a recluse's steeping place."

"Māgandiya, there is the recluse Gotama,
son of the Sakyans,
gone forth from the Sakyan clan,
and about this revered Gotama a lovely reputation has gone abroad thus:

He is indeed the Lord,
perfected one,
fully Self-Awakened One,
endowed with right knowledge and conduct,
knower of the worlds,
Well-farer,
incomparable trainer of men to be tamed,
teacher of devas and men,
the Awakened One,
the Lord.

That sleeping place is ready for this good Gotama."

"Indeed, good Bhāradvāja,
we are seeing a poor sight
in seeing the sleeping place of the good Gotama,
the destroyer of growth."[2]

[182] "Mind what you say,[3] Māgandiya,
mind what you say, Māgandiya.

For many learned nobles and learned brahmans and learned householders and learned recluses have great faith in this good Gotama,
and are trained in the ariyan right path,
in dhamma,
in what is skilled."[4]

"If we could only see that revered Gotama face to face, Bhāradvāja,
face to face would we say to him:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

"If it is not disagreeable to the good Māgandiya,
I will tell this to the recluse Gotama."

"It is of no consequence if the good Bhāradvāja should tell him just what has been said."

Then the Lord, with purified deva-hearing surpassing that of men,
heard this conversation between the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan and the wanderer Māgandiya.

Then the Lord, emerging from solitary meditation towards evening,
approached the fire-room of the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan;
having approached, he sat down on the spreading of grass that was ready.

Then the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan approached the Lord;
having approached, he exchanged greetings with the Lord;
and having conversed in a friendly and courteous way,
he sat down at a respectful distance.

As the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan was sitting down at a respectful distance,
the Lord spoke thus to him:

"There was some conversation, Bhāradvāja,
between you and the wanderer Māgandiya [503] concerning this same grass spreading."

When this had been said the brahman Bhāradvāja,
greatly moved and startled,
spoke thus to the Lord:

"But this was the very thing I wanted to tell the good Gotama,
but the revered Gotama anticipated me.

But this conversation between the Lord and the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan was interrupted when the wanderer Māgandiya,
who was constantly pacing up and down and roaming about on foot,
approached the Lord in the fire-room of the brahman of the Bhāradvāja clan;
having approached, he exchanged greetings with the Lord;
having conversed in a friendly and courteous way,
he sat down [183] at a respectful distance.

As the wanderer Māgandiya was sitting down at a respectful distance,
the Lord spoke thus to him:[5]

"Māgandiya, the eye delights in material shapes,
is delighted by material shapes,
rejoices in material shapes;
it is tamed,
watched,
guarded and controlled by a Tathāgata,
and he teaches dhamma for its control.

Was it on account of this, Magandiya,
that you said:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth'?"

"Just on account of this did I say, good Gotama:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

"The ear, Magandiya, delights in sounds,
is delighted by sounds,
rejoices in sounds;
it is tamed,
watched,
guarded and controlled by a Tathāgata,
and he teaches dhamma for its control.

Was it on account of this, Magandiya,
that you said:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth'?"

"Just on account of this did I say, good Gotama:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

"The nose, Magandiya, delights in smells
is delighted by smells,
rejoices in smells;
it is tamed,
watched,
guarded and controlled by a Tathāgata,
and he teaches dhamma for its control.

Was it on account of this, Magandiya,
that you said:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth'?"

"Just on account of this did I say, good Gotama:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

"The tongue, Magandiya, delights in tastes
is delighted by tastes,
rejoices in tastes;
it is tamed,
watched,
guarded and controlled by a Tathāgata,
and he teaches dhamma for its control.

Was it on account of this, Magandiya,
that you said:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth'?"

"Just on account of this did I say, good Gotama:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

"The body, Magandiya, delights in touches
is delighted by touches,
rejoices in touches;
it is tamed,
watched,
guarded and controlled by a Tathāgata,
and he teaches dhamma for its control.

Was it on account of this, Magandiya,
that you said:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth'?"

"Just on account of this did I say, good Gotama:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

The mind, Māgandiya,
delights in mental states,
is delighted by mental states,
rejoices in mental states;
it is tamed,
watched,
guarded,
controlled by a Tathāgata,
and he teaches dhamma for its control.

Was it on account of this, Māgandiya,
that you said:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth'?" "Just on account of this, good Gotama, did I say:

'The recluse Gotama is a destroyer of growth.'

What is the reason for this?

It is handed down thus in a discourse of ours."

"What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Suppose someone [504] who formerly revelled in material shapes cognisable by the eye -
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring
- after a time, having known
the coming to be and passing away
of material shapes
and the satisfaction
and the peril of them
and the escape (from them) as it really is,
getting rid of craving for material shapes,
suppressing the fever for material shapes,
should dwell devoid of thirst,
his mind inwardly calmed.

What have you, Magandiya, to say of him?"

"Nothing, good Gotama."

"What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Suppose someone who formerly revelled in sounds cognisable by the ear -
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring
- after a time, having known
the coming to be and passing away
of sounds
and the satisfaction
and the peril of them
and the escape (from them) as it really is,
getting rid of craving for sounds,
suppressing the fever for sounds,
should dwell devoid of thirst,
his mind inwardly calmed.

What have you, Magandiya, to say of him?"

"Nothing, good Gotama."

"What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Suppose someone who formerly revelled in smells cognisable by the nose -
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring
- after a time, having known
the coming to be and passing away
of smells
and the satisfaction
and the peril of them
and the escape (from them) as it really is,
getting rid of craving for smells,
suppressing the fever for smells,
should dwell devoid of thirst,
his mind inwardly calmed.

What have you, Magandiya, to say of him?"

"Nothing, good Gotama."

"What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Suppose someone who formerly revelled in tastes cognisable by the tongue -
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring
- after a time, having known
the coming to be and passing away
of tastes
and the satisfaction
and the peril of them
and the escape (from them) as it really is,
getting rid of craving for tastes,
suppressing the fever for tastes,
should dwell devoid of tastes,
his mind inwardly calmed.

What have you, Magandiya, to say of him?"

"Nothing, good Gotama."

"What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Suppose someone who formerly revelled touches cognisable by the body -
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring
- after a time, having known
the coming to be and passing away
of touches
and the satisfaction
and the peril of them
and the escape (from them) as it really is,
getting rid of the craving for touches,
suppressing the fever for [184] touches,
should dwell devoid of thirst,
his mind inwardly calmed.

What have you, Māgandiya, to say of him?"

"Nothing, good Gotama."

"Now I, Māgandiya,
when I was formerly a householder,
endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasures,
revelled in them -
in material shapes cognisable by the eye, agreeable, pleasant agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in sounds cognisable by the ear agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in smells cognisable by the nose agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in tastes cognisable by the tongue,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in touches cognisable by the body,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring.

I had three palaces, Māgandiya,
one for the rains,
one for the cold weather,
one for the hot weather.

I, Māgandiya,
during the four months of the rains
being delighted in the palace for the rains by women musicians,[6]
did not come down from that palace.

But after a time,
having known the coming to be and passing away of sense-pleasures
and the satisfaction and the peril of them
and the escape as it really is,
getting rid of the craving for sense-pleasures,
suppressing the fever for sense-pleasures,
I dwelt devoid of thirst,
my mind inwardly calmed.

I saw other beings not yet devoid of attachment to senseḤpleasures
who were pursuing sense-pleasures
(although) they were being consumed by craving for sense-pleasures,
burning with the fever for sense-pleasures.

I did not envy them:
I had no delight therein.

What was the reason for this?

It was, Māgandiya,
that there is this delight
which, apart from pleasures of the senses,
apart from unskilled states of mind,
[505] stands firm on reaching[7] a deva-like happiness.

Delighting in this delight,[8]
I do not envy what is low,[9]
I have no delight therein.

Māgandiya, it is like a householder or a householder's son,
rich,
of great wealth,
of many possessions
who, endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasures,
might revel in them -
in material shapes cognisable by the eye, agreeable, pleasant agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in sounds cognisable by the ear agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in smells cognisable by the nose agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in tastes cognisable by the tongue,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in touches cognisable by the body,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
[185] alluring.

He, having behaved well in body,
having behaved well in speech,
having behaved well in thought,
at the breaking up of the body after dying,
might arise in a good bourn,
a heaven world,
in companionship with the Devas of the Thirty-Three.

Surrounded there in the Nandana Grove by a throng of nymphs,
he, endowed and provided with the five deva-like strands of pleasures of the senses,
might revel in them.

He might see a householder
or a householder's son
endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasures.

What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Would that young deva,
surrounded by a throng of nymphs in the Nandana Grove,
endowed and provided with the five deva-like strands of sense-pleasures
and revelling in them -
would he envy that householder
or householder's son
or their five strands of human sense-pleasures,
and revert to human sense-pleasures?"

"No, good Gotama. What is the reason for this ? It is that deva-like sense-pleasures are more wonderful and excellent than human sense-pleasures." "Even so did I, Māgandiya,
when I was formerly a householder,
endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasures,
revel in them -
in material shapes cognisable by the eye,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in sounds cognisable by the ear agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in smells cognisable by the nose agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in tastes cognisable by the tongue,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in touches cognisable by the body,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring.

But after a time,
having known the coming to be
and passing away of senseḤpleasures
and the satisfaction
and peril of them
and the escape as it really is,
getting rid of the craving for sense-pleasures,
suppressing the fever for sense-pleasures,
I dwelt devoid of thirst,
my mind inwardly calmed.

I saw other beings not yet devoid of attachment to senseḤpleasures
who were pursuing sense-pleasures
(although) they were being consumed by the craving for sense-pleasures,
[506] burning with the fever for sense-pleasures.

I did not envy them;
I had no delight therein.

What was the reason for this?

It was, Māgandiya,
that there is this delight which,
apart from pleasures of the senses,
apart from unskilled states of mind,
stands firm on reaching a deva-like happiness.

Delighting in this delight,
I do not envy what is low,
I have no delight therein.

Māgandiya, it is like a leper,
a man with his limbs all ravaged and festering,[10] and who,
being eaten by vermin,
tearing his open sores [186] with his nails,
might scorch his body over a charcoal pit;
his friends and acquaintances,
his kith and kin
might procure a physician and surgeon[11];
that physician and surgeon might make up a medicine;
he, taking that medicine,
might be freed of that leprosy,
he might be well,
at ease,
independent,
his own master,
going wherever he liked.[12]

He might see another leper,
a man with his limbs all ravaged and festering, and who,
being eaten by vermin,
tearing his open sores with his nails,
might scorch his body over a charcoal pit.

What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Would that man envy that other leper man
his charcoal pit
or his course of medicine?"

"No, good Gotama.

What is the reason for this?

It is, good Gotama,
that if there is illness,
there is something to be done through medicine;
but if there is not illness
there is nothing to be done through medicine."

"Even so did I, Māgandiya,
when I was formerly a householder,
endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasures,
revel in them -
in material shapes cognisable by the eye,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in sounds cognisable by the ear agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in smells cognisable by the nose agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in tastes cognisable by the tongue,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring;

in touches cognisable by the body,
agreeable,
pleasant,
liked,
enticing,
connected with sensual pleasure,
alluring.

But after a time,
having known the coming to be
and passing away of sense-pleasures
and the satisfaction
and peril of them
and the escape as it really is,
getting rid of the craving for sense-pleasures,
suppressing the fever for sense-pleasures,
I dwelt devoid of thirst,
my mind inwardly calmed.

I saw other beings not yet devoid of attachment to sense-pleasures
who were pursuing sense-pleasures
(although) they were being consumed by the craving for sense-pleasures,
burning with the fever for sense-pleasures.

I did not envy them;
I had no delight therein.

What was the reason for this?

It was, Māgandiya,
that there is this delight which,
apart from pleasures of the senses,
apart from unskilled states of mind,
stands firm on reaching a deva-like happiness.

Delighting in this delight,
I do not envy what is low,
I have no delight therein.

[507] Māgandiya, it is like a leper
a man with his limbs all ravaged and festering, and who,
being eaten by vermin,
tearing his open sores with his nails,
might scorch his body over a charcoal pit;
his friends and acquaintances,
his kith and kin
might procure a physician and surgeon;
that physician and surgeon might make up a medicine;
he, taking that medicine,
might be freed of that leprosy,
he might be well,
at ease,
independent,
his own master,
going wherever he liked.

Two strong men,
taking hold of him by his arms,
might drag him towards a charcoal pit.

What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Would not that man twist his body this way and that?"[13]

"Yes, good Gotama.

What is the reason for that?

It is, good Gotama, that contact with the fire is painful,
for it is both exceedingly hot and afflicting."

"What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Is it only now that contact with the fire is painful and both exceedingly hot and afflicting,
or was contact with that fire also painful before
and both exceedingly hot and afflicting?"

"It is both now, good Gotama,
that contact with the fire is painful,
exceedingly hot and afflicting,
and also before
that contact with that fire was painful,
exceedingly hot and afflicting.

Yet, good Gotama, this leper,
a man with his limbs all ravaged and festering,
being eaten by vermin,
tearing his open sores with his nails,
his sense-organs injured,[14] might,
from the painful contact with the fire,
receive a change of sensation and think it pleasant."

"Even so, Māgandiya, far into the past
contact of sense-pleasures [187] is painful,
exceedingly hot and afflicting,
far into the future too
contact of sense-pleasures is painful,
exceedingly hot and afflicting,
and also now in the present
contact of sense-pleasures is painful,
exceedingly hot and afflicting.

But those beings, Magandiya,
not yet devoid of attachment to pleasures of the senses,
who are being consumed by the craving for sense-pleasures
and burning with the fever for sense-pleasures,
their sense-organs injured,
may, from painful contact with sense-pleasures themselves,
receive a change of sensation and think it pleasant.

Māgandiya, it is like a leper,
a man with his limbs all ravaged and festering,
and who, being eaten by vermin,
tearing his open sores with his nails,
scorches his body over a charcoal pit.

But the more, Māgandiya, this leper,
a man with his limbs all ravaged and festering,
and who, being eaten by vermin,
tearing his open sores with his nails,
scorches his body over a charcoal pit
the more those open sores of his
[508] become septic and evil-smelling and putrefying
and there is only a sorry relief and satisfaction to be had
from scratching the open sores.

Even so, Māgandiya,
do beings who are not yet devoid of attachment to sense-pleasures,
while being consumed by the craving for sense-pleasures
and burning with the fever for sense-pleasures,
pursue sense-pleasures;
and the more these beings
who are not yet devoid of attachment to sense-pleasures
while being consumed by the craving for sense-pleasures
and burning with the fever for sense-pleasures,
pursue them,
the more their craving for sense-pleasures increases,
the more they burn with the fever for sense-pleasures,
and moreover
there is only a sorry relief and satisfaction to be had
from the five strands of sense-pleasures.

What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

Have you ever seen or heard of a king
or a king's chief minister
who, endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasure -
revelling in them
- and who had neither got rid of the craving for sense-pleasures
nor suppressed the fever for sense-pleasures,
dwelt
or is dwelling
or will dwell
devoid of thirst,
his mind inwardly calmed?"

"No, good Gotama."

"It is good, Māgandiya. Neither have I seen or heard of this,
that a king
or a king's chief minister
who, endowed and provided with the five strands of sense-pleasure -
revelling in them
- and who had neither got rid of the craving for sense-pleasures
nor suppressed the fever for sense-pleasures,
dwelt
or is dwelling
or will dwell
devoid of thirst,
his mind inwardly calmed.

But, Magandiya, whatever recluses and brahmans, dwelt
or are dwelling
or will dwell,
devoid of thirst,
with a mind inwardly calmed,
all these,
having known the coming to be
and passing away of these same sense-pleasures,
their satisfaction and peril
and the escape as it really is,
on getting rid of the craving for sense-pleasures,
suppressing the fever for sense-pleasures,
dwelt
or are dwelling
or will dwell
devoid of thirst,
with a mind inwardly calmed."

Then the Lord at that time uttered this solemn utterance:

[188] "Health[15] is the highest gain, Nibbāna the highest bliss;
And of Ways, the Eightfold leads to deathlessness, to security."[16]

When this had been said, the wanderer Māgandiya spoke thus to the Lord:

"It is marvellous, good Gotama,
it is wonderful, good Gotama,
how well this is spoken by the good Gotama:

[509]"Health is the highest gain, Nibbāna the highest bliss."

For I too, good Gotama, have heard of this
as having been spoken by earlier teachers of teachers of the wanderers:

"Health is the highest gain, Nibbāna the highest bliss."

So that this agrees, good Gotama."

"But as to what you heard, Māgandiya,
as having been spoken by earlier teachers of teachers of the wanderers:

"Health is the highest gain, Nibbāna the highest bliss."

what is that health, what is that Nibbāna?"

When this had been said,
the wanderer Māgandiya stroked his own limbs with his hands and said:

"This is that health, good Gotama,
this is that Nibbāna.

For I, good Gotama, am at present in good health,
I have no disease at all."

"Māgandiya, it is like[17] a man blind from birth
who could not see dark or bright shapes,
nor green,
yellow,
red or crimson shapes,
who could not see what is even or uneven,
who could not see the stars,
who could not see the moons and suns.

If he should hear a man with vision saying:

'Indeed it is pleasing to have a lovely,
unstained, pure white cloth,'

he would walk about searching for a white (cloth).

But some man might deceive him with a greasy grimy coarse robe, saying:

"My good man, this is a lovely,
unstained,
pure white cloth,'

and he might take it;
having taken it,
he might put it on;
having put it on,
he might, in his pride,
utter a cry of pride:

'Indeed it is pleasing to have a lovely,
unstained,
pure white cloth.'

What do you think about this, Māgandiya?

If that man, blind from birth,
had known and seen,
would he have taken that greasy grimy [189] coarse robe;
having taken it,
would he have put it on;
having put it on,
would he, in his pride,
have uttered the cry of pride:

'Indeed it is pleasing to have a lovely,
unstained,
pure white cloth'?

Or was it from faith in the man with vision?"

"Not knowing, good Gotama,
not seeing,
that man,
blind from birth,
might take a greasy grimy coarse robe;
having taken it he might put it on;
having put it on,
he might, in his pride,
utter a cry of pride:

[510] 'Indeed it is pleasing to have a lovely,
unstained,
pure white doth.'

It was from faith in the man with vision."

"Even so, Māgandiya,
wanderers belonging to other sects are blind,
they are without vision;[18] not knowing health,
not seeing Nibbāna,
they yet speak this verse:

'Health is the highest gain, Nibbāna the highest bliss.'

But, Māgandiya,
this verse was uttered in days gone by by perfected ones,
fully Self-awakened Ones:

Health is the highest gain, Nibbāna the highest bliss;
And of Ways, the Eightfold leads to deathlessness, to security.'

This has now come down gradually to the ordinary people.

And although, Māgandiya, this body has become an ill,
an imposthume,
a barb,
a misery
and a disease,
yet of this body that has become an ill,
an imposthume,
a barb,
a misery
and a disease,
you say:

'This is that health,
this is that Nibbāna.'

So you have not that ariyan vision, Māgandiya,
by which you might know health,
might see Nibbāna."

"I have reliance thus in the good Gotama
that he could so teach me Dhamma
that I might know health,
might see Nibbāna."

"Māgandiya, it is like a man blind from birth
who could not see dark or bright shapes,
nor green,
yellow,
red or crimson shapes,
who could not see what is even or uneven,
who could not see the stars,
who could not see the moons and suns.

His friends and acquaintances,
kith and kin,
might procure a physician and surgeon;
that physician and surgeon might make up a medicine,
but fail to provide him with eyes with it
or clarify his eyes.

What do you think about this, Magandiya?

Would that doctor feel much trouble and anxiety?"

"Yes, good Gotama,"

"Even so, Magandiya, if I were to teach you dhamma:
This is that health,
this is that Nibbāna -
you would not know that health,
would not see that Nibbāna.

It would be a trouble to me,
it would be a vexation to me."

[511] "I have reliance thus in the good Gotama
that he could so teach me dhamma
that I might know health,
might see Nibbāna."

[190] "Māgandiya, it is like a man blind from birth
who could not see dark or bright shapes,
nor green,
yellow,
red or crimson shapes,
who could not see what is even or uneven,
who could not see the stars,
who could not see the moons and suns.

If he should hear a man with vision saying:

'Indeed it is pleasing to have a lovely,
unstained, pure white cloth,'

he would walk about searching for a white (cloth).

But some man might deceive him
with a greasy grimy coarse robe, saying:

'My good man, this is a lovely,
unstained,
pure white cloth,'

and he might take it;
having taken it,
he might put it on.

His friends and acquaintances,
his kith and kin
might procure a physician and surgeon;
that physician and surgeon might make up a medicine for him,
emetics,[19] purgatives,
collyrium (for the eyes),
ointments,
the nose-treatment.[20]

Because of that medicine he might regain his vision,[21]
might clarify his eyes.

But with the regaining of his vision
he might get rid of that desire and attachment
to that greasy grimy coarse robe,
and he might regard that man as no friend,
might even regard him as an enemy
and consider depriving him of life, thinking:

'For a long time indeed I have been defrauded,
deceived,
and cheated by this man
with a greasy grimy coarse robe who said:

"My good man,
this is a lovely,
unstained,
pure white cloth."'

Even so, Māgandiya,
if I were to teach you dhamma, saying:

'This is that health,
this is that Nibbāna'

you might know health,
might see Nibbāna.

With the arising of your vision,
you might get rid of that desire and attachment
to the five groups of grasping,
and this might even occur to you:

'For a long time indeed I have been defrauded,
deceived and cheated by this mind
for, grasping, I grasped after material shape itself
for, grasping, I grasped after feeling itself
for, grasping, I grasped after perception itself
for, grasping, I grasped after the habitual tendencies themselves;
grasping, I grasped after consciousness itself.

Conditioned by grasping after this,
there was becoming for me;
conditioned by becoming, birth;
conditioned by birth, old age and dying,
grief, sorrow, suffering,
lamentation and despair
[512]came into being.

Thus is the origin of this whole mass of anguish.'"

"I have reliance thus in the good Gotama
that he could so teach me Dhamma
that I could rise from this seat, not blind."

"Well then, Māgandiya,
do you consort with true men;
if you, Māgandiya,
consort with true men,
then will you, Māgandiya,
hear true dhamma;
if you, Māgandiya,
hear true dhamma
then will you, Māgandiya,
fare along in accordance with dhamma;
if you, Māgandiya,
fare along in accordance with dhamma,
then [191] will you, Māgandiya,
know for yourself,
then will you see for yourself that:

'These ills are imposthumes, barbs -
but ills, imposthumes, barbs
can be stopped here without remainder;
from the stopping of grasping after this,
there is the stopping of becoming for me;
from the stopping of becoming,
the stopping of birth;
from the stopping of birth,
old age and dying,
grief,
sorrow,
suffering,
lamentation and despair
are stopped.

Thus is the stopping of this whole mass of anguish.'"

When this had been said,
Māgandiya the wanderer spoke thus to the Lord:

"It is excellent, good Gotama,
excellent, good Gotama.

It is, good Gotama,
as if one might set upright what had been upset,
or might disclose what had been covered,
or point out the way
to one who had gone astray,
or might bring an oil-lamp into the darkness
so that those with vision might see material shapes -
even so in many a figure
has dhamma been made clear by the good Gotama.

I am going to the revered Gotama for refuge
and to dhamma
and to the Order of monks.

May I receive the going forth in the revered Gotama's presence,
may I receive ordination."

"Māgandiya, if a former member of another sect
wishes for the going forth
in this dhamma and discipline,
wishes for ordination,
he undertakes probation for four months.[22]

At the end of the four months the monks,
if they so decide,
may let him go forth,
may ordain him into the status of a monk;
but even here differences among individuals are known to me."

"If, revered sir, former members of other sects,
wishing for the going forth in this dhamma and discipline,
wishing for ordination,
undertake probation for four months,
and if at the end of the four months the monks,
if they so decide,
let them go forth,
ordain them into the status of a monk,
then will I undertake probation for four years;
at the end of the four years the monks,
if they so decide,
may let me go forth,
may ordain me into the status of a monk."

[513] But the wanderer Māgandiya received the going forth in the Lord's presence,
he received ordination.

Soon after he was ordained
the venerable Māgandiya,
dwelling alone,
aloof,
diligent,
ardent,
self-resolute,
in no long time
having realised here and now
by his own super-knowledge
that matchless goal of the Brahma-faring
for the sake of which young men of family
rightly go forth from home into homelessness,
entering on it,
abided [192] in it.

And he knew:

"Destroyed is birth,
brought to a close the Brahma-faring
done is what was to be done,
there is no more of being such or so."

So was the venerable Māgandiya one of the perfected ones.

Discourse to Māgandiya:
The Fifth

 


[1] MA. iii. 209, in the agnihotra-hall.

[2] bhūnahuno. MA. iii. 211: hatavaḍhino mariyādakārakasm ... vaḍhihato mariyādakārako, a killer of growths, the maker of stringent controls (or, rules); and it explains by saying that Māgandiya holds that there should be development and growth in all the six sense-spheres, while the Lord holds that there should be restraint of them, and MA. cites verses at Miln. 167. The word bhūnahu occurs at Sn. 664, in voc. (SnA. 470: bhūtihanaka vuddhināsaka) and at Jā. v. 266, in the plural. See JāA. v. 272: te iaīnam ativattāro attano vaḍḍhiyā hatattā bhūnahuno. Cf. Miln. 314, bhūtahacca, citing the above M. passage. Chalmers translates bhūnahu as "rigid repressionist," i.e. of the senses, which the wanderer thinks should be given fuü scope. See above Intr. p. xv.

[3] As at Vin. ii. 186.

[4] ariye ñaye dhamme kusale. Cf. M. ii. 181, 197, A. i. 69, D. ii. 151. MA. iii. 211 says: parisuddhe kāraṇe dhamme anavajje.

[5] MA. iii. 213 says it is said that tho Lord told the wanderer not to speak to him, and began teaching dhamma at once.

[6] MA. iii. 215-6 says there were women everywhere; they were not only musicians, but door-keepers and barbers.

[7] samadhiggayha tiṭṭhati as at M. ii. 25; S. i. 86; Iti. p. 16. Samadhigaṇhāti appears to mean to reach, acquire, and also to distinguish (see MA. iii. 268 where it is glossed by visesetvā).

[8] MA. iii. 216 says the delight of attaining the fruit of the fourth meditation.

[9] hīnasa. MA. iii. 217 gives hīnajanasukha and also the five strands of human senseṁpleasures.

[10] Cf. S. iv. 198.

[11] As at M. i. 429, ii. 216.

[12] M. ii. 216.

[13] As at M. i. 365.

[14] upahatindriya.

[15] MA. iii 218, for those who get wealth and fame and sons from (reciting) verses health is not the highest gain - yet it is higher than these. But for anyone who has the happiness of meditation or the Way or the fruits, there is no bliss higher than Nibbāna.

[16] Cf. Dhp. 204.

[17] As at M. ii. 201.

[18] Said of Pokkharasāti at M. ii. 202.

[19] The following list also occurs at D. i. 12.

[20] As at Vin. i. 204.

[21] cakkhūni uppādeyya, he might acquire eyes, make them arise. So, in this paragraph cakkhuppādā is translated as "the regaining of his vision" and in the next as "the arising of your vision."

[22] As above, p. 59.

 


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