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Saɱyutta Nikāya
V. Mahā Vagga
55. Sotāpatti Saɱyutta
I. Veḷudvāra Vagga

The Book of the Kindred Sayings
V. The Great Chapter
55. Kindred Sayings on Streamwinning
I. Veḷudvāra

Sutta 6

Thapatayo Suttaɱ

The Chamberlains[1]

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

Copyright The Pali Text Society
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[1] THUS have I heard:

On a certain occasion the Exalted One
was staying near Sāvatthī,
at Jeta Grove,
in Anāthapiṇḍika's Park.

Now on that occasion
a number of monks were busied
with making a robe for the Exalted One,
with this idea:

When the robe is finished,
in three months' time,
the Exalted One will go forth on his rounds.

Now at that time Isidatta and Purāṇa, the chamberlains,
were staying at Sadhuka[2]
on some business or other.

Then they heard the news:

'They say that a number of monks
are busied with making a robe for the Exalted One
with this idea:

When the robe is finished,
in three months' time,
the Exalted One will go forth on his rounds.'

So Isidatta and Purāṇa, the chamberlains,
stationed a man on the high-road
(thus instructing him):

"Now, good fellow,
as soon as you see that Exalted one,
that Arahant,
that perfectly Enlightened One
coming along,
do you ecme and inform us."

So after standing there two or three days
that man saw the Exalted One coming along,
while yet some distance off,
and he went to inform the chamberlains, Isidatta and Purāṇa,
saying:

"Here comes my lord the Exalted One,
that Arahant,
that perfectly Enlightened One!

Now's the time for you to do what you want!"

So Isidatta and Purāṇa, the chamberlains,
went towards the Exalted One,
and on coming to him,
saluted him,
and followed behind the Exalted One
step for step.

Then the Exalted One turned aside from the high-road
and went to the foot of a certain tree
and there sat down on a seat made ready.

And Isidatta and Purāṇa, the chamberlains,
[304] saluting the Exalted One,
also sat down
at one side.

As they thus sat
they said this to the Exalted One:

"Lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Sāvatthī
to go on his rounds among the Kosalans,
at that time
we were disappointed and depressed[3] at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Sāvatthī
to go on his rounds among the Kosalans,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.[4]|| ||

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Kosalans,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.|| ||

"And lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Kosala
to go on his rounds among the Malla,
at that time
we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Kosala
to go on his rounds among the Malla,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Mallas,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.|| ||

"And lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Malla
to go on his rounds among the Vajī,
at that time
we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Malla
to go on his rounds among the Vajī,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Vajī,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.|| ||

"And lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Vajī
to go on his rounds among the Kāsi,
at that time
we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Vajī
to go on his rounds among the Kāsi,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Kāsi,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.|| ||

"And lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Kāsi
to go on his rounds among the Magadhans,
at that time
we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Kāsi
to go on his rounds among the Magadhans,
again we were disappointed and depressed at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Magadhans,
again we were disappointed and depressed[5] at the thought:
The Exalted One will be far from us.|| ||

 


 

[305] But, lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Magadhans
and go on his rounds among the Kāsi,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Magadhans
to go on his rounds among the Kāsi,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Kāsi,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And, lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Kāsi
and go on his rounds among the Vajī,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Kāsi
to go on his rounds among the Vajī,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Vajī,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And, lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Vajī
and go on his rounds among the Mallas,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Vajī
to go on his rounds among the Mallas,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Mallas,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And, lord, when we heard of the Exalted One
that he would go forth from Mallas
and go on his rounds among the Kosalans,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was starting out from Mallas
to go on his rounds among the Kosalans,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

And when, lord, we learned that the Exalted One
was actually going his rounds among the Kosalans,
at that time,
we were delighted and elated at the thought:
The Exalted One will be quite near us.

Then, when we heard:
'The Exalted One is staying at Sāvatthī,
at Jeta Grove,
in Anāthapiṇḍika's Park,'
then, lord, boundless was our delight
and boundless our elation
at the thought:
The Exalted One is near us!"

"Well then, chamberlains,
since living in houses is an oppression,
a dust-hole sort of life,[6] -
whereas a wanderer's life
is a life in the open air,
now is the time for you to show some energy."

"But here too, lord,
we have an oppression still more oppressive,
indeed it is most oppressive."

"What is that still greater oppression, chamberlains?

Here, lord, when the rajah Pasenadi of Kosala
wants to go a-riding in the Park,
we have to deck the riding-elephants
and set thereon the favourite
lovely wives of his majesty,
one before
and one behind.

Now the fragrance of their bodies is so sweet.

It's just as if a casket of scent were opened, -
these royal ladies are so sweetly scented.

Lord, the touch of those ladies
is as soft to the hand
as[7] a tuft of cotton-wool,
so delicately are they nurtured.

Well, lord, at such times
we have to ward the elephant,
and we have to ward the ladies
and ward ourselves as well.

In spite of that, lord,
we are not conscious of calling up
any [306] evil thought about those ladies.

Now, lord, this is
(what we mean by)
another oppression
still more oppressive,
nay, most oppressive."

"Well then, chamberlains,
since living in houses is an oppression,
a dust-hole sort of life, -
whereas the wanderer's life
is a life in the open air, -
now is the time for you to show some energy.

Now, chamberlains, the Ariyan disciple
who is blessed with four things
is a stream-winner,
he is one not doomed to the Downfall,
one assured,
one who is bound for enlightenment.

What are the four things?

Herein, chamberlains, an Ariyan disciple is blessed with unwavering loyalty to the Buddha,
thus:

'He it is the Exalted One,
Arahant,
a fully Enlightened One,
perfect in knowledge and practice,
a Happy One,
world-knower,
unsurpassed charioteer
of men to be tamed,
teacher of devas and mankind,
a Buddha,
an Exalted One.'

He is blessed
with unwavering loyalty to the Norm,
thus:

'Well proclaimed by the Exalted One
is the Norm,
seen in this very life,
a thing not involving time,
inviting one to come and see,
leading onward,
to be known for themselves
by the wise.'

He is blessed
with unwavering loyalty to the Order,
thus:

Walking righteously is the Exalted One's Order,
walking uprightly,
walking in the right way,
walking dutifully
is the Exalted One's Order of Disciples:
namely,
the four pairs of men,
the eight sorts of men.

That is the Exalted One's Order of Disciples.

Worthy of honour are they,
worthy of reverence,
worthy of offerings,
worthy of salutations with clasped hands, -
a field of merit unsurpassed for the world.'

He is blessed
with the virtues dear to the Ariyans,
virtues unbroken,
whole,
unspotted,
untarnished,
giving freedom,
praised by the wise:
virtues untainted (by craving or delusion),
which lead to concentration of the mind.'

He lives at home
with heart freed from the taint of stinginess.

He is open-handed,
pure-handed,[8]
delighting in self-surrender,
one to ask a favour of,[9]
delighting to share charitable gifts.

Blessed with these four things, chamberlains,
the Ariyan disciple is a stream-winner,
he is one not doomed to the Downfall,
one assured,
one who is bound for enlightenment.

Now, chamberlains, you are blessed with[10] unwavering loyalty to the Buddha,
thus:

'He it is the Exalted One,
Arahant,
a fully Enlightened One,
perfect in knowledge and practice,
a Happy One,
world-knower,
unsurpassed charioteer
of men to be tamed,
teacher of devas and mankind,
a Buddha,
an Exalted One.'

You are blessed
with unwavering loyalty to the Norm,
thus:

'Well proclaimed by the Exalted One
is the Norm,
seen in this very life,
a thing not involving time,
inviting one to come and see,
leading onward,
to be known for themselves
by the wise.'

You are blessed
with unwavering loyalty to the Order,
thus:

Walking righteously is the Exalted One's Order,
walking uprightly,
walking in the right way,
walking dutifully
is the Exalted One's Order of Disciples:
namely,
the four pairs of men,
the eight sorts of men.

That is the Exalted One's Order of Disciples.

Worthy of honour are they,
worthy of reverence,
worthy of offerings,
worthy of salutations with clasped hands, -
a field of merit unsurpassed for the world.'

In your family,
whatsoever gifts of charity[11] there be,
they are shared fully and impartially[12]
by the virtuous and good.

Now what think ye, chamberlains?

How many sorts of [307] men are there
among the Kosalans
who are like yourselves
in this matter of sharing gifts of charity?"

"A gain for us, lord!

A thing well gotten by us, lord,
that the Exalted One should come to know this of us!"

 


[1] Thapatayo, 'carpenters,' 'carnage-builders,' 'royal attendants.' In Skt. lit. often 'keepers of the women's apartments.' We may call them 'equerries.' It seems that they were in charge of the royal conveyances [see note infra]. At A. iii, 348, Isidatta is uncle of the woman disciple Migasālā. Her father was Purāṇa. According to Comy. here, Isidatta was a 'once returner,' while Purāṇa was a Stream-wmner.

[2] Their own property, according to Comy.

[3] Anattamanatā hoti.

[4] For the clans here mentioned see Rhys Davids, Buddhist India, and map.

[5] To show the loyalty to the Buddha of these two men, I quote and italicize the passage at M. ii, 123 (Lord Chalmers' trans.), where the rajah Pasenadi complains to the Buddha that he does not get such loyal service from them. 'Further, there are the carriage-builders, Isidatta and Purāṇa, whom I support, who make my carnages (mama bhattā, mama yānā), who owe to me their livelihood and the honours they enjoy. Withal, these men do not serve me as whole-heartedly as they do the Lord. Time was when, being out with my troops on active service, I, to test these two, took up my quarters in a cramped little house, where Isidatta and Puraiia, after spending the best part of the night in discussing the Doctrine, lay down to rest with their heads in the direction where they heard the Lord was, and only their feet towards me. It is wonderful and marvellous, thought I to myself, that these two men, who owe everythmg in the world to me, yet do not serve me as they serve the Lord. Surely, thought I, it is because these reverend men find in the Lord's teachings a high excellence not elsewhere discovered by them before.'

[6] Rajāpatho = rāga-dosa-moha-rajānaŋ patiho. Comy.

[7] Here text should read va for .

[8] Payata-pāṇī, infra, text, 392. Cf. Itiv. 101; UdA. 123; K.S. i, 294. Comy. visuddhi-hattha.

[9] Yāca-yogo, not 'given to begging' (as sometimes trans.), but as Comy. yācitabbaka-yutto.

[10] The text of this is obscure, viz: Tumhe ... samannāgatā hoti (?). To make sense with what follows it seems we should read: Tumhe, hi samannāgatā hotha', according to which I translate.

[11] Deyya-dhammaŋ includes all the requisites given by laymen to monks.

Usually meaning not distinguishing between the levels of attainment of the various bhikkhus.

p.p. explains it all — p.p.

[12] Appaṭivibhattaŋ Comy. 'without saying, "this is for ourselves, that is for the monks."


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