Aŋguttara Nikāya


 

Aŋguttara Nikāya
Pañcaka Nipāta
V: Muṇḍa-Rāja Vagga

The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha
V. The Book of the Fives
V. Muṇḍa the King

Sutta 50

Nārada Suttaɱ

Nārada

Translated from the Pali by Bhikkhu Bodhi.

© 2012 Bhikkhu Bodhi
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[57] [677]

[1][pts] On one occasion the Venerable Nārada was dwelling at Paṭaliputte at the Cock's Park.

Now on that occasion King Muṇḍa's [wife] Queen Bhaddā, who had been dear and beloved to him, had died.

Since her death, he did not bathe, anoint himself, eat his meals, or undertake his work.

Day and night, he remained brooding over Queen Bhaddā'sbody.

Then King Muṇḍa addressed his treasurer, Piyaka:

"Well then, friend Piyaka, [58] immerse Queen Bhaddā's body in an iron vat filled with oil and enclose it in another iron vat so that we can see Queen Bhaddā's body still longer."

"Yes, sire," the treasurer Piyaka replied.

Then he immersed Queen Bhaddā's body in an iron vat filled with oil and enclosed it in another iron vat.

Then it occurred to the treasurer Piyaka:

"King Muṇḍa's [wife] Queen Bhaddā has died, and she was dear and beloved to him.

Since her death, he does not bathe, anoint himself, eat his meals, or undertake his work. Day and night, he remains brooding over the queen's body.

What ascetic or brahmin can King Muṇḍa visit, so that, having heard his Dhamma, he might abandon the dart of sorrow."

Then it occurred to Piyaka:

"The Venerable Nārada is dwelling at Paṭaliputte, in the Cock's Park.

Now a good report about this Venerable Nārada has circulated thus:

'He is wise, competent, intelligent, learned, an artful speaker, eloquent, mature, and an arahant.'

Suppose King Muṇḍa would visit the Venerable Nārada: perhaps if he hears the Venerable Nārada's Dhamma, he would abandon the dart of sorrow."

Then the treasurer Piyaka approached King Muṇḍa and said to him:

"Sire, the Venerable Nārada is dwelling at Paṭaliputte, in the Cock's Park.

Now a good report about this Venerable Nārada has circulated thus:

'He is wise ... and an arahant.'

Your majesty should visit the Venerable Nārada.

Perhaps, when you hear the Venerable Nārada's Dhamma, you would abandon the dart of sorrow.'

[The king said:]

"Well then, friend Piyaka, [59] inform the Venerable Nārada.

For how can one like me think of approaching an ascetic or brahmin living in his realm without first informing him."

"Yes, sire," Piyaka replied.

Then he went to the Venerable Nārada, paid homage to him, sat down to one side, and said:

"Bhante, King Muṇḍa's [wife] Queen Bhaddā, who was dear and beloved to him has died.

Since the queen's death, he does not bathe, anoint himself, eat his meals, or undertake his work.

Day and night, he remains brooding over the queen's body.

It would be good, bhante, if the Venerable Nārada would teach the Dhamma to King Muṇḍa in such a way that he can abandon the dart of sorrow."

"Then let King Muṇḍa come at his own convenience."

Then the treasurer Piyaka rose from his seat, paid homage to the Venerable Nārada, circumambulated him keeping the right side toward him, and went to King Muṇḍa.

He told the king:

"Sire, the Venerable Nārada has given his consent.

You may go at your own convenience."

"Well then, friend Piyaka, get the finest carriages harnessed!"

"Yes, sire," Piyaka replied, and after he had gotten the finest carriages harnessed he told King Muṇḍa:

"Sire, the finest carriages have been harnessed.

You may go at your own convenience."

Then King Muṇḍa mounted a fine carriage, and along with the other carriages he set out in full royal splendor for the Cock's Park to see the Venerable Nārada.

He went by carriage as far as the ground was suitable for a carriage, and then he dismounted from his carriage and entered the park on foot.

He approached the Venerable Nārada, paid homage to him, and sat down to one side.

[60] The Venerable Nārada then said to him:

"Great king, there are these five situations that are unobtainable by an ascetic or a brahmin, by a deva, Māra, orBrahmā, or by anyone in the world.

What five?

(1) 'May what is subject to old age not grow old!':

this is a situation that is unobtainable by an ascetic or a brahmin, by a deva, Māra, orBrahmā, or by anyone in the world.

(2) 'May what is subject to illness not fall ill!':

this is a situation that is unobtainable by an ascetic ... or by anyone in the world.

(3) 'May what is subject to death not die!':

this is a situation that is unobtainable by an ascetic ... or by anyone in the world.

(4) 'May what is subject to destruction not be destroyed!':

this is a situation that is unobtainable by an ascetic ... or by anyone in the world.

(5) 'May what is subject to loss not be lost!':

this is a situation that is unobtainable by an ascetic or a brahmin, by a deva, Māra, orBrahmā, or by anyone in the world....

[The sequel is identical to 5:48, including the verses.] ...

When this was said, King Muṇḍa asked the Venerable Nārada:

"Bhante, what is the name of this exposition of the Dhamma."

"Great king, this exposition of the Dhamma is named the extraction of the dart of sorrow."

"Surely, bhante, it is the extraction of the dart of sorrow!

Surely, it is the extraction of the dart of sorrow, for having heard this exposition of the Dhamma, I have abandoned the dart of sorrow."

Then King Muṇḍa said to the treasurer Piyaka:

"Well then, friend Piyaka, have Queen Bhaddā's body cremated and build a memorial mound for her.

From today on, I will bathe and anoint myself and eat my meals and undertake my work."


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