Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Violence (Dhammapada verses)

Acharya Buddharakkhita (trans.), Dhr. Seven, Amber Larson, Crystal Quintero (eds), Wisdom Quarterly, Dandavagga: "Violence," Dhammapada 10 (Dhp X) PREV-NEXT
The Buddha, sunrise over Borobudur, Java, Indonesia (Ulambert/flickr.com)
The Dhammapada
Dhammapada Verse 129. All tremble at violence; all fear death. Putting oneself in the place of another, one should not kill nor cause another to kill.
130. All tremble at violence; life is dear to all. Putting oneself in the place of another, one should not kill nor cause another to kill.
131. One who, while seeking happiness, oppresses with violence other beings who also desire happiness, will not attain happiness hereafter.
132. One who, while seeking happiness, does not oppress with violence other beings who also desire happiness, will find happiness hereafter.
133. Speak not harshly to anyone, for those thus spoken to might retort. Indeed, angry speech hurts, and one may be overtaken by retaliation.
134. If, like a broken gong, one silences oneself, one has approached nirvana, for vindictiveness is no longer in one.
135. Just as a cowherd drives the cattle to pasture with a staff, so do old age and death drive the life force of beings (from existence to existence in samsara).
Reflecting on the world, on the causes of violence and peace (Ulambert/flickr.com)
136. When the fool commits unskillful deeds, the fool does not realize (their harmful nature). The witless person is tormented by those very deeds, like one burned by fire.
137. One who inflicts violence on those who are unarmed, and offends those who are inoffensive, will soon come upon one of these ten states:
138-140. Sharp pain, or disaster, bodily injury, serious illness, or derangement of mind, trouble from the government, or grave charges, loss of relatives, or loss of wealth, or houses destroyed by ravaging fire; upon dissolution of the body that ignorant person is reborn in hell.
Indian ascetics in Nepal (galuzzi.it)
141. Neither [engaging in ascetic extremes of mortification like] going about naked, nor wearing matted locks, nor wallowing in filth, nor fasting, nor lying on the ground, nor smearing oneself with pyre-ashes and dust, nor sitting on heels (in penance) can purify a person who has not overcome doubt (skepticism).
142. Even though one be well-attired, yet if one is poised, calm, controlled, and established in the pure life, having set aside violence towards all beings -- one, truly, is a holy person (sadhu), a renunciate, a monastic (samana, wandering ascetic).
143. Only rarely is there a person in this world who, restrained by modesty, avoids reproach, as a thoroughbred horse avoids the goad (whip).
144. Like a thoroughbred horse touched by the goad, be strenuous, be filled with spiritual yearning (to strive). By confidence and virtue, by effort and meditation, by investigation of the truth, by being rich in knowledge and purity, and by being mindful, destroy this unlimited suffering (of samsara).
145. Irrigators regulate the waters, fletchers straighten arrow shafts, carpenters shape wood, and the good control themselves.

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