Source of a work

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Source of a work

Postby Euclid » Mon Nov 29, 2010 9:35 am

Hey everyone, so I've been reading E. Conze's book 'Buddhist Meditation', which is largely a group of extracts from the Visuddhimagga, and came across a particular work in the book where he doesn't explicitly say where he got it from. From the general tone with emphasis on renunciation I get the feeling it's Theravada rather than anything else, but I'm not 100% sure. I haven't read Vis. myself, but from what I know it isn't as prose-y as this particular extract. What's more, the numbering in the book is eclectic, and I can only assume that the author has left some stanzas out, while including others. If someone could tell me where this comes from, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thank you all in advance. I've copied the translation verbatim.

1. The practice of introversion

a. Withdrawal from the world

1. With his vigour grown strong, his mind should be placed in samadhi;
For if thought be distracted we lie in the fangs of the passions.

2. No distractions can touch the man who's alone both in his body and his mind.
Therefore renounce you the world, give up all thinking discursive!

3. Thirsting for gain, and loving the world, the people fail to renounce it.
But the wise can discard this love, reflecting as follows:

4. Through stillness joined to insight true,
His passions are annihilated.
Stillness must first of all be found.
That springs from disregarding worldly satisfactions.

5. Shortlived yourself, how can you find that others, quite as fleeting, are worthy of your love?
Thousands of births will pass without a sight of him you cherish so.

6. When unable to see your beloved, discontent disturbs your samadhi.
When you have seen, your longing, unsated as ever, returns as before.

7. Then you forfeit the truth of the Real; your fallen condition shocks you no longer;
Burning with grief you yearn for re-union with him whom you cherish.

8. Worries like these consume a brief life, -- over and over again to no purpose;
You stray from the Dharma eternal, for the sake of a transient friend.

9. To share in the life of the foolish will lead to the states of woe;
Your share not, and they will hate you; what good comes from contact with fools?

10. Good friends at one time, of a sudden they dislike you,
You try to please them, quite in vain, -- the worldly are not easily contented!

11. Advice on their duties stirs anger; your own good deeds they impede;
When you ignore what they say they are angry, and head for a state of woe.

12. Of his betters he is envious, with his equals there is strife;
To inferiors he is haughty, mad for praise and wroth of blame;
Is there ever any goodness in these foolish common men?

13. Self-applause, belittling others, or encouragement to sin,
Some such evil's sure to happen where one fool another meets.

14. Two evils meet when fools consort together.
Alone I'll live, in peace and with unblemished mind.

15. Far should one flee from fools. When met, they should be won by kindness,
Not in the hop of intimacy, but so as to preserve an even, holy, mind.

16. Enough for Dharma's work I'll take from him, just as a bee takes honey from a flower.
Hidden and unknown, like the new moon, I will live my life.

24. The fools are no one's friends, so have the Buddhas taught us;
They cannot love unless their interest in themselves impels them.

26. Trees do not show disdain, and they demand no toilsome wooing;
Fain would I now consort with them as my companions.

27. Fain would I dwell in a deserted sanctuary, beneath a tree, or in a cave,
In noble disregard for all, and never looking back on what I left.

28. Fain would I dwell in spacious regions owned by no one,
And there, a homeless wanderer, follow my own mind,

29. A clay bowl as my only wealth, a robe that does not tempt the robbers,
Dwelling exempt from fear, and careless of my body.

33. Alone a man is born, and quite alone he also meets his death;
This private anguish no one shares; and friends can only bar true welfare.

34. Those who travel through Becoming should regard each incarnation
As no more than a passing station on their journey through Samsara.

38. So will I ever tend delightful and untroubled solitude,
Bestowing bliss, and stilling all distractions.

39. And from all other cares released, the mind set on collecting my own spirit,
To unify and discipline my spirit I will strive.
Euclid
 
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Re: Source of a work

Postby Individual » Thu Dec 09, 2010 10:28 pm

Could you include the citation notes of the author? You said he mentioned numbers. Please include them because that would help others find the passage.

It is definitely possible that what he did is a pretty brutal re-wording of the original, but in my experience this is frequently more useful than a literal translation. As an example, Gil Fronsdal's liberal translation of the Dhammapada resonates with me far more than works by traditional translators, like Bhikkhu Bodhi, who focus on the literal word while the essential meaning is lost.
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: Source of a work

Postby Nyana » Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:42 am

Euclid wrote:From the general tone with emphasis on renunciation I get the feeling it's Theravada rather than anything else, but I'm not 100% sure. I haven't read Vis. myself, but from what I know it isn't as prose-y as this particular extract. What's more, the numbering in the book is eclectic, and I can only assume that the author has left some stanzas out, while including others. If someone could tell me where this comes from, I'd greatly appreciate it.

Hi Euclid,

It's the first part of Chapter 8 from the The Way of the Bodhisattva (Bodhicaryavatāra) by Śāntideva. The entire chapter has around 180 verses.

All the best,

Geoff
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Re: Source of a work

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Dec 10, 2010 8:51 am

Greetings,

Ñāṇa wrote:It's the first part of Chapter 8 from the The Way of the Bodhisattva (Bodhicaryavatāra) by Śāntideva. The entire chapter has around 180 verses.

In which case, I'll move this topic out of the Theravada section - thanks.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Source of a work

Postby Euclid » Fri Dec 10, 2010 10:32 pm

Thank you very much Ñāṇa for providing the source of this - I'm quite surprised to learn it's not Theravada to be honest! And thanks to you Retro for moving this to the appropriate section of the forum. I must admit I had given up all hope of having someone pipe up with the source - I need to have more faith in our knowledgeable eSangha! :D

Thanks again everybody, metta
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