Categories
Therigatha

Therīgāthā 13.1
The Verses of Arahant Nun Ambapāli (252-270)

252. In the past my hair was black, like the color of bees, with curly ends. But because of old age, now it is like dried, rotten bark. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

253. In the past, my hair was fragrant, covered in flowers like a perfumed books. But because of old age, now it smells like a rabbit’s fur. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

254. I used to comb my hair like a beautiful, neatly planted flowerbed. I used to untangle all knots and decorate my hair with golden pins. But because of old age, now my hair is thinning and falling out. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

255. Possessing golden pins, decorated with golden ornaments, adorned with plaits, it looked beautiful. But because of old age, my head is now bald. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

256. In the past, my eyebrows looked beautiful, like well painted crescents made by artists. But because of old age they now droop down with wrinkles. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

257. My eyes were large and black. They shined brilliantly like jewels. But overwhelmed by old age, they no longer look beautiful. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

258. In the bloom of my youth, my nose was delicate and peaked. It made my face look beautiful. But because of old age, now my nose is drooped down. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

259. In the past, my earlobes looked beautiful, like well fashioned and well finished bracelets. But because of old age, they now droop down with wrinkles. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

260. In the past, my teeth looked beautiful, like the color of the pure white bud of the banana tree. But because of old age, they now are broken and yellow. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

261. I used to have a sweet voice, like a sweet humming bird wandering among bushes and shrubs in the forest. But because of old age, it now stutters and lags. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

262. In the past, my neck looked beautiful, like a well rubbed, delicate golden shell. But because of old age, it is now hunched and wrinkled. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

263. In the past, both my arms looked beautiful, like they were made of gold. But because of old age, now they are weak and bony, just like the branches of the pātalī tree. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

264. In the past, my fingers looked beautiful, decorated with delicate golden rings. But because of old age, now they look like the roots of onions and radishes. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

265. In the past, my breasts looked beautiful, lifted up, round and close together. But now they hang down like empty water bags. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

266. In the past, my body looked beautiful, like a well-polished sheet of gold. But now it is covered with drooping skin. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

267. In the past, both my thighs looked beautiful, like the shape of an elephant’s graceful trunk. But because of old age, they are now like stalks of dried bamboo. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

268. In the past, my calves look beautiful, decorated with delicate golden anklets. But because of old age, they are now like the stalks of vegetables. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

269. In the past, the soles of my feet were soft and looked beautiful, like shoes full of cotton. But because of old age, they are now cracked and wrinkled. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

270. Such is the true nature of this body. The body loses its dignity with old age. It is the home of many pains. Now this body is like a broken down house, beyond repair, about to fall apart. The words of the truth speaker, the Buddha, aren’t false.

These verses were said by Arahant Nun Ambapāli.

Three Bar Menu Button

Therīgāthā 13.1: The Verses of Arahant Nun Ambapāli (252-270)

Have a question?

Do you have a question about what you have read?