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Dhammapada Txt

Dhammapada Txt

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Published by Zubair Hossain Imon

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Published by: Zubair Hossain Imon on Apr 04, 2010
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11/14/2013

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bàlà dummēdhà yaü kañukapphalaü hōti (taü) pàpakaü
kammaü karontà amittēna iva attanà caranti

bàlà: the immature people; dummēdhà: unwise men; yaü
kañukapphalaü hōti: which brings evil results; pàpakaü
kammaü: (that) evil act; karontà: doing; amittēna iva: like
an enemy; attanà: to oneself; caranti: live.

Those unwise foolish people behave in a manner that is harm-
ful to themselves. Their sinful actions yield bitter fruit. They
are their own enemy.

252

Commentary

bàlà dummēdhà: the foolish people lacking wisdom. The two words
are more or less synonymous. But the lack of a sense of discrimination,
intensifies the meaning of ignorant. The sense of discrimination is
compared, in some texts, to lightning in a mountain peak. That bolt of
lightning destroys everything on the top of the mountain. In the same
way, the wise are capable of destroying all the defilements. But the ig-
norant person and the person who is incapable of discrimination do not
have that capacity to uproot blemishes. The foolish people who lack in-
telligence commit evil actions that bring them harmful results. They
are being enemies to themselves.

253

Do What Brings Happiness

5 (8) The Story of a Farmer (Verse 67)

While residing at the Jētavana Monastery, the Buddha spoke this
verse, with reference to a farmer who handled poison.

A farmer tilled a field not far from Sàvatthi. One day some
thieves robbed the house of a rich man. One of the thieves out-
witted his companions and secretly put away a purse contain-
ing a thousand pieces of money in a fold of his garment. As the
thief departed with his share, the purse dropped out of the fold
of his garment, but he did not notice his loss.

That day, early in the morning, the Buddha surveyed the world,
and seeing that a certain farmer had entered his net of vision,
he considered within himself what would happen.

Early in the morning the farmer went to till his field. The Buddha
was also there with the Venerable ânanda. Seeing the Buddha,
the farmer went and paid obeisance to the Buddha, and then re-
sumed tilling his field. The Buddha said nothing to him. Going
to the place where the purse had fallen and seeing it, he said to
the Venerable ânanda, “See, ânanda, a poisonous snake!” “I
see, Venerable, a deadly, poisonous snake!” The farmer heard
their conversation and said to himself, “I will kill the snake.”
So saying, he took a goad-stick, went to the spot, and discov-
ered the purse. “The Buddha must have referred to this purse,”
thought he. Not knowing exactly what to do about it, he laid
the purse aside, covered it with dust, and resumed his plowing.

Later men discovered the theft, and trailed the thieves to the
field, and coming to the spot where they had divided their
spoils, saw the foot-prints of the farmer. Following his foot-

254

steps to the spot where the purse was buried, they removed the
earth and picked up the purse. Thereupon they reviled him,
saying, “So you robbed the house, and here you are plowing
the field!” And having given him a good beating, they took
him and censured him before the king.

When the king heard what had happened, he ordered the
farmer to be put to death. As the farmer walked along and the
king’s men lashed him with whips, he kept repeating the
words, “See, ânanda, a poisonous snake!” “I see, Venerable, a
deadly, poisonous snake!” Not another word did he utter. The
king’s men asked him, “You are repeating words of the
Buddha and of the Venerable ânanda. What does this mean?”
The farmer replied, “I will say, if I am permitted to see the king.”

He told the king, “I am not a thief, your majesty.” The farmer
told him the whole story. The king took the farmer to the
Buddha, and asked him about this. The Buddha said, “Yes,
your majesty, I said just that when I went there. A wise man
should not do a deed of which he must afterwards repent.”

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