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Samyutta Nikaya
Brahmaṇa Saṁyutta

7.1 Dhanañjānī Sutta
Husband of Dhanañjānī

What should you kill to sleep at ease?

This is as I heard. At one time, the Buddha was living in the city of Rājagaha, in the Bamboo Garden, in the squirrels’ feeding ground.

Now at that time, there was a person named Bhāradvāja of the brahmin caste. His wife was named Dhanañjānī and was devoted to the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Saṅgha. Once, while she was bringing her husband his meal, she tripped and remembered the Buddha, saying three times:

“Homage to the Blessed One, the liberated one, the fully enlightened Buddha!

“Homage to the Blessed One, the liberated one, the fully enlightened Buddha!

“Homage to the Blessed One, the liberated one, the fully enlightened Buddha!”

When she said this, her husband said, “Are you crazy? Wretched woman, while living in my house, are you praising that bald headed monk? You know what? I’m going to go right now and argue against your master’s teaching!”

“Dear husband, I don’t see anyone in this world with its gods, Māras, Brahmās, monks, and humans who can argue against the teaching of the Blessed One, the Worthy One, the fully enlightened Buddha. But anyway, you can go and see for yourself.”

Then Bhāradvāja, angry and upset, went to the Buddha and exchanged greetings with him. When the greetings and polite conversation were over, he sat down to one side, and asked the Buddha in verse:

“What should you kill to sleep at ease?
What should you kill so that there is no sadness?
What is the one thing whose killing you approve?”

The Buddha:

“When anger is killed, you sleep at ease.
When anger is killed, there is no sadness.
Bhāradvāja, anger has a poisonous root1
and a sweet tip.2
The noble ones praise the killing of anger,
for when it is killed, there is no sadness.”

When the Buddha taught this Dhamma, Bhāradvāja said to him, “Excellent, Master Gotama! Excellent! Just as if someone turned upright, what was upside down, revealed what was hidden, pointed out the path to whoever was lost, or lit a lamp in the dark so people with good eyes could see what’s there, Master Gotama taught me the Dhamma, which is clear in many ways. I go for refuge to Master Gotama, to the Dhamma, and to the Saṅgha. Bhante, may I become a monk under you?”

And he became a monk under the Buddha. Not long after his ordination, Bhante Bhāradvāja, living alone, withdrawn, diligent, passionate, and firm, soon realized the supreme goal of the spiritual path in this very life. He achieved with his own wisdom the goal for which a son would leave the lay life to become a monk.

He realized: “Rebirth has ended. The spiritual journey has been completed. What had to be done to end suffering has been done. There will be no rebirth.” Therefore, Bhante Bhāradvāja became one of the enlightened monks.

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Saṁyutta Nikāya 7.1 Dhanañjānī Sutta: Husband of Dhanañjānī

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