Samyutta Nikaya
Brahmaṇa Saṁyutta

SN 7.15 Mānatthaddha Sutta
Big-headed One

An arrogant person is tamed.

At the city of Sāvatthī…

Now at that time, a person named Mānatthaddha of the brahmin caste was living in the city of Sāvatthī. He didn’t pay respect to his mother or father, his teacher, or his oldest brother. Now, at that time the Buddha was teaching the Dhamma, surrounded by a large assembly.

Then Mānatthaddha thought, “The monk Gotama is teaching the Dhamma, surrounded by a large assembly. I shall go see him. However, only if he speaks to me, shall I speak to him. But if he doesn’t speak to me, neither will I.”

Then Mānatthaddha went up to the Buddha, and stood silently to one side. But the Buddha didn’t speak to him.

Then Mānatthaddha thought, “This monk Gotama knows nothing!” And he wanted to go back from there right away. Then the Buddha reading his mind and knowing what Mānatthaddha was thinking, told him in verse:

“Mānatthaddha, you came here with a goal in mind,
therefore it is not good for you to be arrogant.
You should achieve the goal which brought you here.”

Then Mānatthaddha was shocked and thought, “Surely the monk Gotama read my mind!” He bowed with his head to the Buddha’s feet, caressing them and covering them with kisses, and pronounced his name: “Master Gotama, I am Mānatthaddha! I am Mānatthaddha!”

Then the people of that assembly were stunned. “It’s incredible, it’s amazing! This Mānatthaddha doesn’t bow to his mother or father, his teacher, or his oldest brother. Yet he shows such utmost respect to the monk Gotama!”

Then the Buddha said to Mānatthaddha, “Enough, Mānatthaddha, get up and take your own seat. Your mind has confidence in me.”

Then Mānatthaddha took his seat and said to the Buddha:

“Towards whom should I not be arrogant?
Who should I respect?
Who should I treat well?
Who is it good to honour wholeheartedly?”

The Buddha:

“You should not be arrogant towards your mother, father,
your older brothers and sisters and your teacher.
You should especially respect these four people.
You should treat them well.
And you should honour them wholeheartedly.

“There are liberated monks in this world.
They have realized the truth of life.
They are cool hearted, unsurpassed and free of defilements.
Worship them without being arrogant and conceited.”

When the Buddha taught the Dhamma like this, Mānatthaddha said to the Buddha, “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. From this day forth, may Master Gotama remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge to the Triple Gem for as long as I live.”

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Saṁyutta Nikāya 7.15 Mānatthaddha Sutta: Big-headed One

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