THE BOOK OF
THE NUMERICAL SAYINGS
(AðGUTTARA-NIKâYA)

BOOK II

HONOUR TO HIM, THE EXALTED ONE,
THE ARAHANT, BUDDHA SUPREME

THE SECTION OF TETRADS
(CATUKKA-NIPATA)

 

CHAPTER I

Thus have I (ânanda) heard. Once the Exalted One wassojourning at Bhaõóagàma, in the country of the Vajjã. Then the Exalted One thus addressed the brethren: `0brethren?' They responded: ` Yea, Lord ! and the Exalted One spake thus:

2 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii,I

Brethren, through not rightly knowing and realising four things, for a long time have you and 1 fared on and wandered (from life to life). What four things? Brethren, through not rightly knowing and realising holy1 conduct, holy concentration, holy insight and holy emancipation, for a long time have you and I fared on and wandered (from life to life). Brethren, this holy conduct, holy concentration, holy insight, and holy emancipation have 1 now rightly known and realised, craving for existence have 1 destroyed and cut the cord' of life. Now there is no more rebirth for me. The Master delivered this (discourse) ; thereafter the Happy' One uttered these (verses):

Virtue, mind's balance, insight, utter release-
These truths by famous Gotama are known.
By power supernal thus enlightened, He,
Ender of Sorrow, Teacher with opened eye,
Unto the brethren taught the Norm and ceased.,

Brethren, whoso is not possessed of four things is said to be fallen away from this Norm and Discipline.' Which are the four? Whoever, brethren, possesses not holy conduct,

1 -noble or eminent,'belonging to the Ariyan race.'
2 Netti=rajju, rope or cord.
3 Sugato.
D.N., ii, 123.
5 Dhamma-Vinaya.

I. [ 3] At Bhaõóagàma 3

holy concentration, holy insight and holy emancipation is said to be fallen away from this Norm and Discipline. And whoever is possessed of the aforesaid things is said not to have so fallen away.

They fade and fall, and falling from one life
Greedy for life renewed they come again.
But they whose task is done, to whom the Norm
Brought happiness, have won the bliss they earned.

Brethren, being endowed with four things the unwise, sinful ignorant man beareth himself about a lifeless uprooted thing, becomes blame-worthy and is censured by the wise. Thus he stores up much demerit. With what four things? Not knowing and without due enquiry praising him who deserves not praise, and without knowing and due enquiry blaming him who is worthy of praise, rejoicing wherein one should not rejoice and not rejoicing wherein one should rejoice. On account of these four things the unwise, sinful, ignorant man beareth himself about a lifeless uprooted thing, is censured by the wise and stores up much demerit.

Brethren, being endowed with four things, the wise, righteous, sensible man fareth about full of life and well-established, is praised by the wise and stores up much.

iA,i,161.

4 The Numerical Sayings [TEXP ii; 3]

merit. With what four things? With knowledge and after close inquiry praising him who is praise-worthy, blaming him who is blame-worthy, rejoicing wherein one should rejoice and rejoicing not wherein one should not rejoice. Being endowed with these four things, the wise, righteous, sensible man fareth about, full of life and well-established, is praised and well-spoken of by the wise and stores up much merit.

Who praiseth what should blamed be,
Or blameth who should praised be,
He by his lips demerit stores,
And by that ill-luck wins no bliss.
Small is the ill-luck of a man
Who gambling loseth all his wealth.
Greater by far th' ill-luck of him
Who, losing all and losing self,
Doth foul the mind against the Saints.
Whose reviles the worthy ones,
In speech and thought designing ill,
For a hundred thousand periods,
For six and thirty, with five more,
Such periods he's doomed to Hell.

Brethren, by wrongfully conducting himself towardsfour persons, the unwise, sinful, ignorant, man beareth

himself about, a lifeless uprooted thing, becomes censurable by the wise and stores up much demerit. Towards what four? Brethren, the unwise, sinful, ignorant man, by wrong-fully conducting himself towards mother, father, the Buddha and His holy disciples, bearing himself about a lifeless uprooted thing, becomes censurable by the wise and stores up much demerit.

Brethren, by rightly conducting himself towards four persons, the wise, righteous, sensible man fareth about full of life and well-established, is praised by the wise and stores up much merit. Towards what four? Brethren, whose rightly conducts himself towards mother, father, the Buddha and His holy disciples, fareth about full of life and well-established, is praised by the wise and stores up much merit.

Mother and father and the Enlightened One,
Tathagata and those who follow Him,
Whose entreateth ill, stores up much woe.
For such ill-deeds to parents, in this life
The Sages blame that man, and in the life
To come to utter ruin goeth he.
Mother and father and the Enlightened One
Tathagata, and those who follow Him,
Whose entreateth well, stores up much bliss.
For such good deeds to parents, in this life
The Sages praise that man, and afterwards
In the world of heaven he reaps happiness.

6 [TEXT ii, 5

(5) Four Persons

Brethren, there are to be seen existing in the world these four beings. Which four? The one who goes with the current, the one who goes athwart the current, the established one and the noble one,' who having crossed (the stream) stands on firm ground. Brethren, who is the one that goes with the current? Here (in the world) a certain one indulges in sensual pleasures and does ill deeds. Such is the one who goes with the current.

Who is the one that goes athwart the current? Here (in the world) is one who indulges not in sensual pleasures, who does no ill deeds, but, though with pain of body and anguish of ind, with tearful face weeping, yet leads a life of pure and complete celibacy. Brethren, such is the one who goes athwart the current.

Brethren, who is the established one? Here, a certain man having cut off the five downward-drawing bonds is' apparitionally reborn (in heaven), transcends the world and attains Arahaniship. Brethren, such is the established one..,

Brethren, who is the noble one that has crossed the stream? Brethren, here a certain one, having eliminated the intoxicants, is freed from the intoxicants,' his mind emancipated and insight won, himself in this life having gained the transcendent faculties dwells in the fruition thereof. Such is the noble one who has crossed the stream and stands on firm ground

1 This is the Non-returner.

literally ` fluxes: pp. 63 and 64. and Avijjà are the four â floods which carry a person down the stream of continued existence, life after life.

3 This is the Arahant.

1. 6) 7

These four beings, brethren, are to he seen existing in the world.
Whose in their desires are unrestrained,
And, here born slaves to sensual pleasures are,-
These, to decay and old returning oft,
Bondsmen to craving, swim adown the stream.'
Wherefore the sage, who in this life, firm fixed
In concentration, follows not desires
And sins, but painfully rejecteth these-
'Tis he, men say, that swims against the stream.
Who hath cast off the five depravities-
A perfect pupil he, that cannot fail-
Master of mind, with faculties subdued-
He is the one that standeth-fast,û they say.
Who, grasping all states great and small, remains-
In whom all states are quenched, exist no more-
He, knowing all, living the holy,life,
Is called world-ender, that hath passed beyond.'

(6) Learning and Virtue

Brethren, there are to be seen existing in the world these four beings.

Which four? He that is ill-versed

-------------

1 Anusota-gàmin

2 Patisota-gàmin

3 Thitatto

4 Pàragato

8. The Numerical Sayings (TEXT ii, 7)

(in the Norm) and leads not a virtuous life; he that is ill-versed but leads a virtuous life ; he that is well-versed but leads not a virtuous life, and he that is well-versed and also leads a virtuous life.

Brethren, who is the ill-versed person that leads not a virtuous life? Here (in the world) a certain one is but slightly versed in the Sutta, Geyya, Veyyàkarana, Gathà, Udàna, Itivuttaka, Jàtaka, Abbhuta-dhamma and Vedalla,' but, is ignorant of the primary and interpreted meaning (of the Norm) and has not reached complete righteousness. This indeed, brethren, is the ill-versed person who leads not a virtuous life.

Brethren, who is the ill-versed person that leads a virtuous life? Brethren, here (in the world) a certain one, though slightly versed (in the Norm consisting of the Sutta; and the rest), knows the primary and the interpreted meaning of that little, and governs his life accordingly.

----------------

1 These are called the `Nine Factors of the Norm `-Navanga Sutta is discourses including the two Vibhangas, Niddesa, Khandaka, Parivàra, Sutta Nipàta, Mangala úutta and other discourses bearing the name of Suttas.

Geyya is discourses with accompanying verses, especially the Sagàthaka Vagga of the Samutta

Veyyakarana consists of the whole of Abhidhamma Pitaka, and discourses unaccompanied by verses, but unincluded in the other eight divisions.

Gathà, consists of Dhammapada, Thera- and Therigàthà, Sutta Nipiita and pure verses not called discourses.

Udàna forms the eighty-two ` Sayings of Joy' of the Master.

Itivuttaka is the sayings of the Master-Logia.

Jataka is the five hundred ancl fifty stories relating to the Bodhisatta's past lives.

Abbhuta-Dhamma is the record of the Lord's wonderful phenomena.

Vedalla includes Culla-Vedalla, Maha-Vedalla and Sammà Ditthi and other discourses of exultation.

i. 6] 9

This indeed, brethren, is the one who is ill-versed but leads a virtuous life.

Brethren, who is the well-versed person that leads not a virtuous life? Brethren, here (in the world) a certain person is well-versed in the Sutta and the rest, aind knowing the primary and the interpreted meaning of the much he has learnt governs not his life accordingly. Brethren, this indeed is the person who is well-versed but leads not a virtuous life.

Brethren, who is the well-versed person that leads a virtuous life? Here (in the world) -a certain one who is well-versed (in the Norm consisting of the said Nine Factors) and, knowing the primary and interpreted meaning of the text, governs his life thereby. Brethren, this is the person who is well-versed and leads a virtuous life. Brethren, these four persons are indeed to be seen existing in the world.'

He who is ignorant and careless in his ways-
Men blame him for his ways and lack of learning too.
He who is ignorant, but careful in his ways-
Men praise his character, the' knowledge is not his
He who is deep in lore, but careless in his ways-
Men blame his character; his knowledge goes for naught.
He who is deep in, lore and careful in his
Men praise his character and learning deep as well.

-----------

1 The four persons are. (1) the ignorant and sinful one, (2) the i norant but vrrtuous one (3) the-versed but sinful one, and (4)the well versed and passion-free One (Arahant). ÝComy.

10 The Numerical Sayings (TEXT ii, 8)

But deep in love, knowing the Norm,
In wisdom perfect following
The all- enlightened One as guide,
A lump of solid gold is he.
Who rightly can speak ill of him?
Even the devas praise that man:
Brahmà himself speaks well of him.

(7) Shining Lights of the Order*

Brethren, these four persons, who are full of wisdom and insight, are: well-disciplined, learned- (in the Norm) and have reached complete righteousness, shed lustre upon the Order (of the Brotherhood). Which are the four?. Brethren, the brother, the sister, the lay-brother and the lay-sister, who are full of wisdom and insight, well-disciplined, and learned, and have reached complete, -righteousness, shed lustre upon the Order. Brethren, these four beings do indeed shed lustre upon the Order.

Whose is wise and learned and skilled in lore,
Knowing the Norm, conforming to the Norm,
Illuminates the Order,' so men say.
The virtuous Brother, the Sister of deep lore,
The layman and lay-woman of staunch faith
These four light up the Order-so men say.
'Illuminators of the Order `they.

(8) Confidences

Brethren, there are these four Confidences' of a Tathagata. The Tathagata possessed of such Confidences proclaims His leadership, ` roars the Lion's roar in the midst of the assembly and establishes the supremacy of the Glorious Wheel. Which four?

ßThou, who proclaimest Buddha-hood, hast not rightly realised such and such things.û So saying either a recluse, a brahmin, a god, a Mara, a Brahms or any other person in the world with good reason may reproach me. Any ground for this thing, 0 brethren, I see not. Not seeing any ground for such a thing, I dwell in security and tranquillity, having attained the Confidences.

Thou, who proclaimest Thyself as having eliminated the âsavas, ` hast not freed Thyself from such and such âsavas'.û So saying either a recluse, a brahmin, a god, a Mara, a Brahmà or any other person in the world with good reason may reproach me. Any ground for such a thing, 0 brethren, I see not. Not seeing any ground for such a thin I dwell in security and tranquillity, having attaiiaed the Confidences.

Thou hast indeed declared the impediments (to the attainment of heaven or Nibbana), but they are not at all impediments to him who follows them!.û So saying either a recluse, a brahmin, a god, a Mara, a Brahmà or any other person in the world with good reason may reproach me. Any ground for such a thing, 0 brethren, I see not.

-

2. Literally: `The place of the Bull.'

3. Intoxicants.' See 12 [TEXT ii, 9

Not seeing any ground for such a thing, I dwell in security and tranquillity, having attained the Confidences.

Thou hast proclaimed the Norm for the good (of the world), but it does not lead him who practises it to attain unto the complete annihilation of sorrow.û So saying either a recluse, a brahmin, a god, a Mara, a Brahms or any other person in the world with good reason may reproach me. Any ground for such a thing, 0 brethren, I see not. Not seeing any ground for such a thing I dwell in security and tranquillity, having attained the Confidences.

Brethren, these indeed are the Four Confidences of the Tathagata ; and possessed of these Confidences He proclaims His leadership, roars the Lion's-roar and establishes the supremacy of the Glorious Wheel.

Whate'er the far-spun net of heresies
Recluse and bràhmin confidently hold-
All such disputes and controverted points
Fall fruitless when they reach Tathàgata,
Who made the all-conquering Norm-Wheel roll a1ong,
Out of compassion for whatever breathes.
To such an One, the best of gods and me

All creatures bow. He has,transeended being.

Whenever, brethren, craving arises in (the mind of) a brother, there are these four causes for its arising., Which

four? With regard -to robes, alms-food, lodging and also refreshments. craving re-arises ` in the mind of a brother who is subject to craving.

Thus, brethren, craving arises in (the mind of) a brother who is subject to craving. Whenever craving arises in (the mind of) a brother, there are indeed, brethren, these four causes for its arising.

He who hath craving for his friend
To age-long wandering is bound.
He cannot cross samsàra's stream,
Existence here or otherwhere..
Knowing the danger of it all,
Knowing how craving beareth woe,
That brother from all craving freed
Without attachment wanders forth,

 

(10) Bonds

Brethren, there are these four Bonds. What four? The Bond of sensual pleasures, the Bond of confirmed

-

1 Lit. which is the cause of thus or thus becoming in any sort of existence'.

[Comy. navanãtàdini.] `Refreshments' are the `extra luxuries'allowed to the (Tanhà) which is used to arising, arises.' p 109.

14 [TEXT ii, 10

existence,' the Bond of speculative views' and the Bond of nescience.'

Brethren, what is the Bond of sensual pleasures? Here (in the world) one knows not, as they really are, the arising, the passing away, the attraction of, the danger in, and the escape from, sensual pleasures. In him who knows not, as they really are, the arising, the passing away, the attraction of, the danger in, the escape from, sensual pleasures, there arise attachment, delight, fondness, intoxication, thirst, burning and clinging to sensual pleasures.

What is the Bond of nescience? Here (in the world), one knows not, as they really are, the arising and so forth of the six sense-objects. In him who knows not as they really are the arising and so forth of these six sense-objects, there arises ignorance or nescience as regards the six sense-objects. This, brethren, is called the Bond of nescience. He who is full of sin, demerit, passions and subject to the painful tortures of rebirth and also future births, decay and, death is the, one who is not liberated from the Bonds. Thes,e indeed, brethren, are the four Bonds.

Brethren, there are (also) these four Liberations from the Bonds. What four? The Liberation from the Bond of sensual pleasures, the Liberation from the Bond of continued

-

1 =Lust for life in Rupa and Arupa realms.

na- or desire for ecstatic bliss, and the sixty-two heretical views.

3 =Ignorance of the Four Holy Truths.

existence, the Liberation from the Bond of speculative views and the Liberation from the Bond of nescience.

Bound by the Bond of sensual delight,
Bound by the Bond of coming to be born,
Bound by the Bond of speculative views,
And circled round by utter ignorance,.
Creatures are drawn into samsàra's whirl,
And come again to birth, decay and death.
They who have, mastered sensual delight,
And fully learned the Bond of re-becoming,
By giving up all speculative views,
By getting rid of utter ignorance-

Freed from these Bonds, they have all bonds transcended.

(CHAPTER 1: BIIAöôAGâMA- VAGGA ENDS)