CHAPTER VII
ON MERITORIOUS DEEDS

(1) Blessings

0NCE the householder Anàthapindika came to where the Exalted One was. Having come he made obeisance to the Exalted One and took. a seat at one side. To the householder Anàthapindika, so seated, the Exalted One spake thus: "Householder, in the world there are these four things, which are welcome, pleasant, agreeable, but hard to gain. What are the four? [One wishes thus:] `May I acquire wealth lawfully.' This is, the first thing in the world which is welcome, pleasant, agreeable but hard to gain.

`Having acquired wealth lawfully, may my retinue, together with relations and preceptors, shine forth.' This is the second thing in the world which is welcome, pleasant, agreeable but hard to gain.

`Having acquired wealth lawfully, together with my relations and preceptors may 1 live long and reach great age.' This is the third thing in the world, which is welcome, pleasant, agreeable but bard to gain.

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1 Patta-kamma.

88 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii, 67

`Having acquired wealth lawfully and together with my relations and preceptors having lived long and reached great age, when the body falls asunder may I be reborn to theliss of the heaven-world?' This is the fourth thing in the world, which is welcome, pleasant, agreeable, but hard to gain.

Householder, these indeed are the four things, which in the world are welcome, pleasant, agreeable but hard to gain.

Of a truth, householder, for the attainment of these four things, which in the world are welcome, pleasant, agreeable but hard to gain, there are also four conditions. What are the four? The blessing of faith, the blessing of virtuous conduct, the blessing of liberality and the blessing of wisdom.

Householder, what is the blessing of faith? Herein, householder, the Ariyan disciple is full of faith and believes in the supreme knowledge of the Tathàgata, thus: 'This is He, the Exalted One, the Holy One, the Supremely Awakened One, the Perfect in Knowledge and in Conduct, the Auspicious, the Knower of all the worlds, the Incomparable Trainer of men, the Teacher of dev'as and men, the Awakened, Exalted One.' This, householder, is said to be the blessing of faith.

Householder, what is the blessing of virtuous conduct? Herein, householder, the Ariyan disciple abstains from taking life, thieving, unchastity, lying and partaking of fermented liquor. This, householder, is said to be blessing of virtuous conduct.

Householder, what is the blessing of liberality? Herein, householder, the Ariyan disciple lives the household life, with mind freed from -the taint of avarice generous, openhanded, delighting in gifts, a good one to be asked and

vii. [61] On Meritorious Deeds 89,

devoted to the distribution of gifts. Householder, this is said to be the blessing of liberality.

Householder, what is the blessing of wisdom? Householder, he who dwells with mind overcome by greed, avarice, ill-will, sloth, drowsiness, distraction and flurry, and also doubt, commits wrongful deeds and neglects that which ought to be done, and by so doing is deprived of happiness, and honour.

Of a truth, householder, such an Ariyan disciple, seeing that greed and avarice, ill-will, sloth and drowsiness, distraction and flurry and doubt are stains of the mind, gets rid of such stains of the mind. Because indeed, householder, the Ariyan disciple sees that greed and avarice, ill-will, sloth and drowsiness, distraction and flurry and doubt are defilements of the mind, he removes such defilements. Householder, such an Ariyan disciple is said to be of great wisdom, abundant wisdom, clear vision and perfect wisdom. This, householder, is said to be the blessing of wisdom.

Indeed, householder, for the attainment of these four things which are welcome, pleasant, agreeable, but lead to gain, there are in the world these four conditions.

Of a truth, householder, by means of wealth legitimately and justly acquired, earned by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat (of the brow),

the Ariyan disciple becomes the doer of four acts. Of what four?

Householder, here (in the world) by means of wealth legitimately and justly acquired, earned by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat (of the brow), the Ariyan disciple makes himself happy and cheerful

90 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii, 67

and preserves himself full of happiness; also makes his parents, wife and children, servants and labourers, friends and companions happy and cheerful, and preserves them full of happiness. This is the first stage he reaches, attains and enjoys owing to his own exertions.*

Then again, householder, as regards wealth legitimately and justly acquired, earned by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat (of the brow), if any misfortune happen, owing either to fire, water, the rajah, thief, enemy, or (expectant) heirs, the Ariyan disciple (saying) it is my duty* to defend my property against such misfortunes, ' saves himself from danger. This is the second stage he reaches, attains and enjoys owing to his own exertions.

Then again, householder, with wealth legitimately and justly acquired, earned by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat (of the brow), the Ariyan disciple makes the five oblations, namely; gifts to relatives, presents to guests, offerings to departed spirits, taxes to rajahs and oblations to devas. This is the third stage he reaches, attains and enjoys owing to his own exertions.

Then again, householder, if there are recluses and brahmins, who are free from intoxication and negligence, have attained to gentleness and forbearance, have tamed, calmed and purified themselves, and to such recluses and bràhmins the Ariyan disciple makes beneficial gifts, which result in heavenly bliss and lead to heavenly life, by means of wealth legitimately and justly acquired, earned by great

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1 âyatanaso.

2 Ti implies that his words or thoughts are quoted.

vii, [62] On Meritorious Deeds 91

industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat (of the brow), -this is the fourth stage he reaches, attains and enjoys owing to his own exertions.

Verily, householder, by means of wealth legitimately and justly acquired, earned by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm and gained by sweat (of the brow), the Ariyan disciple becomes the master of four attainments. Householder, if the wealth of any one go to waste owing to lack of these four attainments, such wealth, householder, is said to have been not reached, attained or enjoyed owing to his own exertions. Householder, if the wealth of any one becomes diminished, it is owing to these four causes.

I have enjoyed my wealth. I have fed those
Dependent on me, and these have escaped
From dangers.' I have made the best of gifts
And done th! oblations five. The virtuous
Who live the life, well-trained, I have supported.
The goal of laymen shrewd who, long for wetlth-
That goal ' I have attained. I've done a deed
Never to be regretted." Pondering thus
In th'Ariyan Norm a mortal man stands firm -
In this world praised, i' the next world he rejoices.

(2) Happiness

Once the householder Anàthapindika came to where the Exalted One was. Having come he made obeisance to

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1 Text careless again. Read attho, correlative to yadattha?lz above. The editor has been misled by atho in line 2.

92 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii, 69

the Exalted One and took a seat at one side. To the householder Anàthapiõóika so seated the Exalted One spake thus: "Householder, there are these four kinds of happiness, obtainable by the householder, who enjoys the pleasures of the sensess as time and proper season may allow. What are the four? The happiness of possession, the happiness of enjoyment, the happiness of freedom from debt and the happiness of blamelessness.

Householder, what is the happiness of possession? Herein, householder a clansman is possessed of wealth justly and righteously acquired by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm, and earned by sweat (of the brow). At the thought 'I am possessed of wealth justly gained' and so forth, he thus gains happiness, he thus gains satisfaction. Householder, this is said to be the happiness of possession.

Householder, what is the happiness of enjoyment? Herein, householder, a clansman is possessed of wealth justly and righteously acquired by great industry, amassed by strength of the arm, and earned by sweat (of the brow), enjoys his wealth and performs acts of merit. Thus at the thought " I am doing meritorious deeds with my wealth which was justly gained' and so forth he gains happiness, he thus gains satisfaction. Householder, this is said to be the happiness of enjoyment.

Householder, what is the happiness of freedom from debt? Herein, householder, a clansman owes no one any debt great or small, thus he gains happiness, thus he at the thought of ' I owe no man anything' and 'So forth, gains satisfaction. Householder, this is said to be the happiness of freedom from debt.

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Atthi-sukhant (lit. the bliss of actuality or of their existing).

vii. [62] On Meritouris Deeds 93

Householder, what it; the happiness of blamelessness? Herein, householder, the Ariyan disciple is endowed with blameless action of body, . blameless speech and blameless thinking. He thus, at the thought `I am endowed thus and thus gains happiness, he thus gains satisfaction. Householder, this is said to he the happiness of blamelessness.

Verily, householder, these four kinds of happiness are constantly obtainable by the householder, who enjoys the pleasures of the senses. as time and season may allow.

Winning the bliss of being free from debt,
Then' may a man reflect on really having.
When he enjoys his wealth he sees for sure.*
Seeing he knows: thus is he wise in both.
These three have not one-sixteenth of the bliss
That cometh to a man by blamelessness.

(3) Gratitude to Parents

Brethren, in whatsoever families parents are worshipped at home by their children, such families are reckoned like unto Brahmà. Brethren, in whatsoever families parents are worshipped at home by their children, such families are reckoned like unto the teachers of old. Brethren, in whatsoover families parents are worshipped at home by their children, such families are reckoned like unto the gods of old.

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1 Read tato for text tatho.

2 Païïà-vipassati-`he sees it as it really is'.

94 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii, 70

Like unto the worshipful ones, brethren, .are those families, by whose children parents are worshipped in the home. Brethren, ' noble ones' is, a name for parents. Brethren, ancient teachers ' is a name for parents. Brethren, ancient gods ' is a name for parents. Brethren, `persons worthy of offerings ' is a name for parents. What is, the reason therefor? Brethren, parents are of great help to children, protect and nourish them and point out to them what is (good and bad) in this world.'

Parents are `Brahmà called, * `teachers of old'
Worthy of worship they-compassionate
Unto their tribe of children. Thus the wise
Should worship them and pay them honour due-
Serve them with food and drink, clothing and beds,
Anoint their bodies, bathe and wash their feet.
Wise men who thus their parents daily cherish
Get praise in this world, happiness in heaven.

(4)* Lures to Hell

Brethren, he who commits four deeds is, like iinto a load laid down, * reborn in purgatory. What are the four? One kills, steals, commits impurity and lies. Indeed, brethren,

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1 See A., ii, 132, and gàthàs there. Also itivuttaka, 109-11. The gàthàs are a continuation of those at [32 above and Jàt., V, 330.

2 Vucchare==vuccanti.

3 Add 64 as title of this Sutta (omitted in text),

4 Cf. above 20-Nikkhitto yathàbhatam-the idea is of `falling plumb' (as we say 'as sure as a gun').

Vii. [65] On Meritorious Deeds 95

he who commits these four deeds is born in-purgatory, like unto a load laid down.'

To kill; to take what is not given; to lie;
To foul another's wife. These things the wise
Commend not.

(5) Modes of Judging

Brethren, there are these four persons to be seen existing in the world. What four? He who is pleased judging merely by appearance, he who is pleased judging merely by reputation, he who is pleased judging merely by abstemious life, and he who is pleased judging merely by (a person's) teaching. Indeed, brethren, these four persons are to be seen existing in the world.

They who judge by (outer) form,

`And they who go by what folk, sayÞ
Influenced by lust and passion,
Such as these know not a man.
He who the inside knoweth not
Nor clearly doth the outside see-
A fool, hedged in.on every side
He is misled by what folk say.

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1 The gàthàs are also at Digh., iii, 182, and are discussed at Kuddh. Pàth., P. 143, Comy. Some have made capital out of the fact that the precept 'not to drink ' is omitted here, and have even said that it was non-Buddhistic! Of course, as we are dealing with 'fours' [both here and at Digh., iii, loc. cit.] the fifth precept is not discussed, moreover it is always taken as included in the third,

2 Pamano-'judging by, measuring by'.

96 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii, 72

He who the inside -knoweth not
But clearly doth the outside seeÞ
Looking alone at outward fruits
He is misled by what folk say.
He who the inside knoweth well
And doth the outside clearly seeÞ
He seeing without prejudice
Is not misled by what folk say.'

(6) The Sinful

Brethren, there are these four kinds of persons to be seen existing in the world. What are the four? He who is lustful, he who has ill-will, he who has delusion and he who has pride. Indeed, brethren, these four persons are to be seen existing in the world.

In love with lustful things, enamoured of fair forms,
Vile creatures by delusion bound increase their bonds.
Even the wise do evil deeds that spring from lust',
From hatred and illusion, painful, sorrow-fraught.
Blind creatures, clothed in ignorance, not having sight!
When evil states arise, they are too proud to think
We're thus, because it is our nature so to be."*

1 When all persons are divided into three classes. two of them are pleased judging by apearance. when divided into five, four go by reputation; When divided into ten, nine go by one's life, and when into a lakh, one only is pleased judging by the teaching.-Comy.

2 Yathà dhammà tathà santà, , etc. Comy. ad. loc. says " beings bereft of the eye of wisdom (païïa)-according as (yathà) lusts and passions are established as conditions (dhamma thità-, being of like nature (sabhàva) with them (i.e., ageeable to), do not think(na maïïare= na maïïati ) mayam evam sanità evam sabhàvanti tassa, "in being thus (wicked) are acting in accordance with our nature (natural depravity)." So I understand this difficult passage: taking the last line to refer to blind pride (màno)-[Ed.]

vii. [67] On Meritorious Deeds 97

(7) Four Kinds of Snakes

At one time tho Exalted One dwelt at Jeta-Grove in Anàthapindika's Pleasure-ground near Sàvatihi. At that time in `Sàvatthi a certain brother had died, bitten by a snake. Then many brethren came to where the Exalted One was. Having come they made obeisance to the Exalted One and took seats at one side.

So seated the brethren spake thus to the Exalted One Lord, here at Sàvatthi a certain brother has died bitten by a snake."

(The Master replied) Brethren, this brother did not send forth thoughts of loving-kindness to the four royal families of snakes. For if, brethren, this brother had sent forth thoughts of loving-kindness to the four royal families of snakes that brother would not have died bitten by a snake.

What are the four royal families of snakes? The royal family of snakes called Viråripakkha, * the royal family of snakes called Eràpatha, ' this royal family of snakes called Chabbyàputta* and the royal family of snakes called Kanhàgotamaka.*

Indeed, brethren, this brother did not send forth thoughts, of loving kindness to the four royal families of snakes: for

1 This section occurs at Vin. ii (Cullavagga), 109: jàt. A. ii, 144. (For the Metta-sutta, cf. Sn. 143 K hp., ix. Yogàvacara, pp. 4-5 ]. It is difficult to say what snakes are here meant. The Gàthàs have been found in a Sanskrit MSS. described in J. P. T. S. 1893. The section has been translated by Gogerly and Copleston (Buddhism, P. 105) and the Jàtaka part by Rouse (Vol. ii. Cambridge Edition).

1 The regent of the Western quarter, regarded as a Nàga-ràjà.

He is one of the Asuras in Mahàbhàrata.

3 Eràvata is Indra's elephant (the Eastern quarter) also the name of a Nàga.

4 In the MSS. referred to above chibba-probably for chaviya.

5 Called krishna-g.? black-snake.

13

98 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT 1, 73

truly, if this brother had sent forth thoughts of loving kindness to the four royal families of snakes, he would not have died bitten by a snake. Brethren, I enjoin you as a charm, a guard and a protection for yourselves, to send forth thoughts of loving kindness towards the four royal families of snakes, thus

Goodwill have I to Viråpakka snakes,

Goodwill have I to Eràpatha snakes,

Goodwill have I to Chabyaputta snakes,

Goodwill have I to Kanhà-gotamakas!

Goodwill to the footless, those who have two feet Four feet or many, to them all good-will!1

Let not the footless do me harm,

Nor those that have two feet,

Let not four-footed ones me harm,

Nor those with many feet!

All creatures that are born and breathe-

May all see luck, and may no harm befall!

Infinite are the virtues of the Awakened One, infinite are the virtues of the Norm and infinite are the virtues of the Order. Finite are the reptiles, snakes and scorpions, centipedes, spiders, lizards and rats. Now am I guarded and fenced round, and may all beings depart (in peace). All honour to the Exalted One, and all honour to the Seven Supremely Awakened Ones! So say I.'

1 Bishop Copleston, in the passage quoted, pathetically adds in a note:"But nowadays the number of creeping things, in Ceylon at least, is no longer finite."

Vii.[68] On Meritorious Deeds 99

(8) The Fall of -Devadatta

At one time, the Exalted One dwelt at Ràjagaha on Vulture's Peak, soon after the secession of Devadatta.* Then the Exalted One addressed the brethren regarding Devadatta thus: " Brethren, gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his own destruction. Brethren, gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his ruin.

Brethren, just as the plantain produces fruit to its own destruction, produces fruit to its own ruin, likewise, , brethren, gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his own destruction gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his own ruin.

Just as, brethren, the bamboo produces fruit to its own destruction, produces fruit to its own ruin, likewise, brethren, gain, honour and farne arose to Devadatta to his own destruction;. gain, honour and fame, arose to Devadatta to his own ruin.

Just as, brethren, the reed produces fruit to its own destruction, produces fruit to its own ruin, likewise, brethren, gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his own destruction: gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his own ruin.

Just as, brethren, the mule * becomes pregnant to her own destruction, to her own ruin, likewise, brethren, gain, honour and fame arose to Devadatta to his own destruction, to his own ruin."

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1 Cf. Vin., iii, 256: S, i, 153: ii, 241.

2 Comy. says the mule cannot bring forth unless she is killed. The passage is quoted at Milinda. D. 166. The case of the talipat palm, which flowers after fifty years and dies, might be added.

100 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT i i, 74

As is the plantain, bamboo and the rush,
Each by the fruit it bears undone,
So is the fool by others' homage slain,
Even as by her embryo the mule.

(9) Four Exertions*

Brethren, there are these four Exertions. What four? The Exertion to control, the Exertion to destroy, the Exertion to develop and the Exertion to preserve.

And what, brethren, is the exertion to control? Brethren, herein a brother begets a desire, exerts himself, puts forth endeavour and strenuously applies his mind to prevent from arising sinful conditions that have not arisen, to put away sinful conditions that have arisen, to produce meritorious conditions that have not arisen and to promote, increase, develop, perfect and preserve meritorious conditions, , that have arisen. These indeed, brethren, are the four exertions.

Control, destruction, practice, guarding well: these four
Exertions, by a Kinsman of the Sun proclaimed,
Are they by which an ardent brother sorrow ends.

(10) Righteousness and Unrighteousness

Brethren, during such time as kings are unrighteous their ministers and officers* also become unrighteous. The

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1 Cf. supra 15, 8. ii, 196: iii, 96.

Ràjayutta in Ceylon text and Adyar MS. but ràja-putta in P.T.S. edition.

vil. [70] On Meritorious Deeds 101

ministers and officers, brethren, being unrighteous, bràhmin and householders also become unrighteous. The bràhmins and householders, brethren, being unrighteous, the townsfolk and villagers become unrighteous. The townsfolk and villagers brethren, being unrighteous, the sun and the moon turn about and desert their course; sun and moon so turning, the constellations and planetary bodies turn about from their course.; in like manner the day and night are out of joint; thus the months and fortnights, the seasons and the years being out of joint, the winds blow wrong the deities are annoyed. The deities becoming annoyed bestow not rain at proper time. The rains not falling at proper times, the crops are not properly produced. Brothren, when crops are not properly produced, men who live on such crops also become short-lived, ill-favoured, weak and sickly.

But whenever, brethren, kings are righteous, then kings' ministers and officers also become righteous. Whenever kings' ministers and officers become righteous the bràhmins and householders also become righteous. Whenever bràhmins and householders become righteous, the townsfolk and villagers also become righteous. Whenever the townsfolk and villagers become righteous, the sun and the moon run smoothly on their course. Whenever the sun and the moon turn evenly, the fixed stars and planets run evenly. When this is so, the day-time and the night-time become regular. The day-time and the night-time becoming regular, the, month and the fortnight become regular. The months and the fortnights becoming regular, the seasons and the years also become regular. The seasons and the years becoming regular, regular winds blow in proper

102 The Numerical Sayings [TEXT ii, 75

directions. Regular winds blowing in proper directions, the deities become pleased. When the deities become pleased, they bestow rain at proper times. When it rains at proper times, the crops become ripe in order due. Brethren, men who live on the crops, which ripen duly, become long-lived, well-favoured, powerful and healthy.

When kine are crossing, if the old bull swerve,
They all go swerving, following his lead.
So among men, if he who's reckoned chief
Walks crookedly, the others crooked go.
The whole realm suffers when the king goes wrong.
When kine are crossing, if the bull go straight,
They all go straight because his course is straight.
So among men, if he who's reckoned chief
Walks righteously, the others live aright.
The whole realm happy lives when kings are good.

(CHAPTER VII: ON MERITORIOUS DEEDS ENDS)