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Samyutta Nikaya
Sakka Saṁyutta

11.1 Suvīra Sutta
The Discourse about the Deity Suvīra

What does God Sakka, the one with with power over Tāvatiṁsa gods, praise?

This is how I heard. One time the Blessed One was staying in the province of Sāvatthi in Jeta’s park, Anāthapiṇḍika’s Monastery. There the Blessed One addressed the monks saying, “Oh monks.” “Bhante,” those monks replied to the Blessed One. The Blessed One said this:

“Monks, once in the past the titans marched against the gods for battle. Then, monks, Sakka, lord of the gods, addressed Suvīra, a young god, thus: ‘Dear son Suvīra, these titans are marching against the gods for battle. Go, dear son Suvīra, launch a counter-march against the titans.’

“The young god Suvīra replied to god Sakka saying ‘Yes, I will gain you victory.’ But he failed to follow god Sakka’s order.

“Monks, for the second time, Sakka, lord of the gods, told Suvīra, the young god, thus: ‘Dear son Suvīra, these titans are marching against the gods for battle. Go, dear son Suvīra, launch a counter-march against the titans.’

“The young god Suvīra replied to god Sakka saying ‘Yes, I will gain you victory.’ But he failed to follow God Sakka’s order.

“Monks, for the third time, Sakka, lord of the gods, told Suvīra, the young god, thus: ‘Dear son Suvīra, these titans are marching against the gods for battle. Go, dear son Suvīra, launch a counter-march against the titans.’

“The young god Suvīra replied to god Sakka saying, ‘Yes, I will gain you victory.’ But he failed to follow God Sakka’s order.

“Then, monks, Sakka, lord of the gods, told Suvīra, the young god, a verse:

“‘If you can achieve a happy goal without having any courage or making any effort, Suvīra, you do that and take me along with you.’

Suvīra:

“‘If a lazy person who doesn’t have any courage and does not do any work can achieve a prosperous goal, God Sakka, please tell me what that prosperous goal is.’

God Sakka:

“‘If you can achieve a happy goal while being lazy or without making any effort, Suvīra, you do that and take me along with you.’

Suvīra:

“‘God Sakka, if a person can reach a happy goal without doing any work, oh god Sakka, please tell me about that happy goal which is sorrowless and without despair.’

God Sakka:

“‘If there exists a place anywhere where no work is done, no one will live there. Suvīra, the way to reach that place is to follow the path which leads to Nibbāna. Suvīra, go there and take me along with you.’

“So, monks, even Sakka, lord of the gods, experiencing the happy results of his own merit, exercising supreme power and rulership over the Tāvatiṁsa gods praises courage and effort. Then monks, how much more would it be fitting here for you, who have become monks in such a well taught Dhamma and discipline, to arouse energy, struggle, and strive for the attainment of unattained Arahantship, for the realization of unrealized Dhamma, for the achievement of unachieved Nibbāna.”

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Saṁyutta Nikāya 11.1 Suvīra Sutta: The Discourse about the Deity Suvīra

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