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Sutta Nipata

Sutta Nipāta
1.4 Kasībhāradvāja Sutta
The Discourse to the Brahmin Kasībhāradvāja

Beautiful similes the Buddha gives to a brahmin who challenges him.

Evaṁ me sutaṁ. Ekaṁ samayaṁ bhagavā Magadhesu viharati Dakkhiṇāgirismiṁ Ekanālāyaṁ brāhmaṇagāme. Tena kho pana samayena Kasībhāradvājassa brāhmaṇassa pañcamattāni naṅgalasatāni payuttāni honti vappakāle.

Thus have I heard: On one occasion the Blessed One was living in the province of Magadha, at the Southern Mountains in the brāhmin village of Ekanālā. Now at that time about five hundred plows were yoked for the planting season in the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja’s field.

Atha kho Bhagavā pubbaṇha­samayaṁ nivāsetvā patta­cīvaramādāya yena Kasī­bhāradvājassa brāhmaṇassa kammanto tenupasaṅkami. Tena kho pana samayena Kasī­bhāradvājassa brāhmaṇassa parivesanā vattati. Atha kho Bhagavā yena parivesanā tenupasaṅkami. Upasaṅkamitvā ekamantaṁ aṭṭhāsi.

Then, in the morning, the Blessed One dressed and, taking his robe and bowl, went to where the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja was working. It was the time of food distribution by the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja. The Blessed One drew near to the place of the food-distribution, and stood to one side.

Addasā kho Kasībhāradvājo brāhmaṇo Bhagavantaṁ piṇḍāya ṭhitaṁ. Disvāna Bhagavantaṁ etadavoca. Ahaṁ kho samaṇa kasāmi ca vapāmi ca kasitvā ca vapitvā ca bhuñjāmi. Tvampi samaṇa kasassu ca vapassu ca Kasitvā ca vapitvā ca bhuñjassū’ti.

The Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja saw the Blessed One standing there for alms. Having seen he said to the Blessed One, “Oh recluse, I plow and sow. Having plowed and sown, I eat. You too, recluse, should plow and sow. Having plowed and sown, you should eat.”

Ahampi kho brāhmaṇa kasāmi ca vapāmi ca kasitvā ca vapitvā ca bhuñjāmī’ti.

“I too, Brāhmin, plow and sow. having plowed and sown, I eat.”

Na kho pana mayaṁ passāma bhoto Gotamassa yugaṁ vā naṅgalaṁ vā phālaṁ vā pācanaṁ vā balivaddevā, Atha ca pana bhavaṁ Gotamo evamāha. Ahampi kho brāhmaṇa, kasāmi ca vapāmi ca kasitvā ca vapitvā ca bhuñjāmī’ti.

“But, we don’t see the Master Gotama’s yoke or plow, plowshare, goad, or oxen, and yet the Master Gotama says this: ‘I, too, Brāhmin, plow and sow. Having plowed and sown, I eat.’”

Atha kho Kasībhāradvājo brāhmaṇo Bhagavantaṁ gāthāya ajjhabhāsi.

Then Brahmin Kasībhāradvāja addressed the Blessed One with a verse:

1. Kassako paṭijānāsi – Na ca passāma te kasiṁ
Kasiṁ no pucchito brūhi – Yathā jānemu te kasiṁ

1. You claim to be a plowman, but we don’t see your plowing. Being asked, tell us about your plowing so that we may know your plowing.

(The Buddha:)

2. Saddhā bījaṁ tapo vuṭṭhi – Paññā me yuganaṅgalaṁ
Hiri īsā mano yottaṁ – Sati me phālapācanaṁ

2. Confidence is my seed, austerity my rain; wisdom my yoke and plow; shame my pole; mind my yoke-tie; and mindfulness my plowshare and goad.

3. Kāyagutto vacīgutto – Āhāre udare yato
Saccaṁ karomi niddānaṁ – Soraccaṁ me pamocanaṁ

Guarded in body, guarded in speech, and in food and stomach restrained I use truth as my weed cutter and through gentleness I am released.

4. Viriyaṁ me dhuradhorayhaṁ – Yogakkhemādhivāhanaṁ
Gacchati anivattantaṁ – Yattha gantvā na socati

Effort, my beast of burden which carries me across to safety from bondage. It goes ahead without stopping, to where having gone, one does not sorrow.

5. Evamesā kasī kaṭṭhā – Sā hoti amatapphalā
Etaṁ kasiṁ kasitvāna – Sabbadukkhā pamuccatī’ti

That is how my plowing is done. It has the deathless as its fruit. Having done this plowing, I am released from all suffering.

Atha kho Kasībhāradvājo brāhmaṇo Mahatiyā kaṁsapātiyā pāyasaṁ vaḍḍhetvā Bhagavato upanāmesi. Bhuñjatu bhavaṁ Gotamo pāyasaṁ Kassako bhavaṁ yaṁ hi bhavaṁ Gotamo amataphalaṁ kasiṁ kasatī’ti.

Then, the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja, having filled a large bronze bowl with milk-rice, offered it to the Blessed One, saying, “May the Master Gotama eat this milk-rice. The Master Gotama is truly a plowman, for the Master Gotama plows the plowing that has the deathless as its fruit.”

(The Buddha:)

6. Gāthābhigītaṁ me abhojaneyyaṁ
Sampassataṁ brāhmaṇa nesa dhammo
Gāthābhigītaṁ panudanti Buddhā
Dhamme sati brāhmaṇa vuttiresā

Food received by reciting stanzas is not fit to be eaten by me. This, oh Brāhmin, is not the nature of those who follow the Dhamma. The Buddhas reject any food offered for reciting stanzas. This is their rule of conduct, oh Brāhmin, that forever exists in the world.

7. Aññena ca kevalīnaṁ mahesiṁ – Khīṇāsavaṁ kukkuccavūpasantaṁ
Annena pānena upaṭṭhahassu – Khettaṁ hi taṁ puññapekkhassa hotī’ti

If you offer other food and drink to those noble ones who are virtuous, With taints and doubts destroyed that is the field for one seeking merit.

(Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja:)

Atha kassa cāhaṁ bho Gotama, imaṁ pāyasaṁ dammī’ti.

Then to whom, Master Gotama, should I give this milk-rice?

(The Buddha:)

Nakhvāhaṁ taṁ brāhmaṇa passāmi sadevake loke samārake sabrahmake sassamaṇabrāhmaṇiyā pajāya sadevamanussāya yassa so pāyāso bhutto sammā pariṇāmaṁ gaccheyya aññatra Tathāgatassa vā Tathāgata sāvakassa vā. Tena hi tvaṁ brāhmaṇa, taṁ pāyāsaṁ appaharite vā chaḍḍehi appāṇake vā udake opilāpehī’ti.

Brāhmin, in this world with its devas, Māras and Brahmas, or in this generation with its recluses and brāhmins, with its devās and humans, there is no one by whom this milk-rice, if eaten, could be properly digested except by the Tathāgata or the disciple of the Tathāgata. Therefore, Brāhmin, throw the milk-rice away in a place without grass, or into water where there are no living beings.

Atha kho Kasībhāradvājo brāhmaṇo taṁ pāyāsaṁ appāṇake udake opilāpesi. Atha kho so pāyāso udake pakkhitto ciccitāyati ciṭiciṭāyati sandhūpāyati sampadhūpayāti. Seyyathā’pi nāma phālo divasasantatto udake pakkhitto ciccitāyati ciṭiciṭāyati sandhūpāyati sampadhūpayāti. Evameva so pāyāso udake pakkhitto cicciṭāyati ciṭiciṭāyati sandhūpāyati sampadhūpayāti.

So the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja threw the milk-rice into some water with no living beings. The milk-rice, when dropped into the water, hissed and sizzled, smoked and steamed. Just as an iron ball heated all day, when tossed in water, hisses and sizzles, smokes and steams, in the same way the milk-rice, when dropped in the water, hissed and sizzled, smoked and steamed.

Atha kho Kasībhāradvājo brāhmaṇo saṁviggo lomahaṭṭhajāto yena Bhagavā tenupasaṅkami. Upasaṅkamitvā Bhagavato pādesu sirasā nipatitvā Bhagavantaṁ etada’voca.

Then the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja, alarmed, with his hair standing on end, went to the Blessed One, fell with his head at the Blessed One’s sacred feet, and said to the Blessed One:

Abhikkantaṁ bho Gotama, abhikkantaṁ bho Gotama, seyyathāpi bho Gotama nikkujjitaṁ vā ukkujjeyya, paṭicchannaṁ vā vivareyya, mūḷhassa vā maggaṁ ācikkheyya, andhakāre vā telapajjotaṁ dhāreyya cakkhumanto rūpāni dakkhintī’ti. Evamevaṁ bhotā Gotamena anekapariyāyena dhammo pakāsito. Esā’haṁ bhavantaṁ Gotamaṁ saraṇaṁ gacchāmi Dhammañca Bhikkhu saṅghañca. Labheyyā’haṁ bhoto Gotamassa santike pabbajjaṁ labheyyaṁ upasampadan’ti.

“Magnificent, Master Gotama! Magnificent, Master Gotama! Just as a man were to set upright what was overturned, to reveal what was hidden, to show the way to one who was lost, or to carry a lamp into the dark so that those with eyes could see forms, in the same way the Dhamma has been made clear in many ways by the Master Gotama. I go for refuge to the Master Gotama, to the Dhamma, and to the community of monks. Let me obtain novice ordination and higher ordination in the presence of the Master Gotama.”

Alattha kho Kasībhāradvājo brāhmaṇo Bhagavato santike pabbajjaṁ, alattha upasampadaṁ. Acirūpasampanno kho panāyasmā Bhāradvājo eko vūpakaṭṭho appamatto ātāpī pahitatto viharanto nacirasseva yassatthāya kulaputtā sammadeva agārasmā anagāriyaṁ pabbajanti tadanuttaraṁ brahmacariya pariyosānaṁ diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchīkatvā upasampajja vihāsi. Khīṇā jāti. Vusitaṁ brahmacariyaṁ. Kataṁ karaṇīyaṁ. Nāparaṁ itthattāyā’ti abbhaññāsi. Aññataro ca kho panā’yasmā Bhāradvājo Arahataṁ ahosī’ti.

Then the Brāhmin Kasībhāradvāja obtained novice ordination and higher ordination in the presence of the Blessed One. Not long after receiving his ordination, while dwelling alone, secluded, heedful, ardent, and resolute, by his own insight, here and now, realized and attained the highest perfection, the supreme goal of the holy life, the goal for which clansmen go forth from home into homelessness. He understood that birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, what had to be done has been done; there is nothing further to be done to attain Nibbāna; there is no more rebirth in this saṁsāra. And so Venerable Bhāradvāja became one of the Enlightened Ones.

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Sutta Nipāta 1.4 Kasībhāradvāja Sutta: The Discourse to the Brahmin Kasībhāradvāja

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