SN 1.73 Vitta Treasure

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SN 1.73 Vitta Treasure

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Apr 22, 2014 3:00 am

SN 1.73 Vitta Treasure
Translated by Bhikkhu Bodhi

"What here is a man’s best treasure?
What practised well brings happiness?
What is really the sweetest of tastes?
How lives the one whom they say lives best?”

“Faith is here a man’s best treasure;
Dhamma practised well brings happiness;
Truth is really the sweetest of tastes;
One living by wisdom they say lives best.” [130]


[130] SS record a v.l. sādhutaraṃin pāda c, but Spk’s gloss madhutaraṃ indicates that the reading available to the commentator here was sādutaraṃ. However, Spk recognizes the same v.l. in connection with the identical vv. 846-47 SN 10.12. See n. 597:
    Spk: Faith is a man’s best treasure because it brings mundane and supramundane happiness as its result; it alleviates the suffering of birth and aging; it allays poverty with respect to excellent qualities; and it is the means of obtaining the gems of the enlightenment factors, etc. Dhamma here is the ten wholesome qualities, or giving, virtue, and meditation. This brings human happiness, celestial happiness, and in the end the happiness of Nibbāna. By truth here truthful speech is intended, with Nibbāna as the ultimate truth (paramatthasacca) and truth as abstinence (from falsehood; viratisacca) comprised within that. Of the various kinds of tastes, truth is really the sweetest of tastes, truth alone is the sweetest (sādutaraṃ). Or it is the best (sādhutaraṃ), the supreme, the highest. For such tastes as that of roots, etc., nourish only the body and bring a defiled happiness, but the taste of truth nourishes the mind with serenity and insight and brings an undefiled happiness.

    One living by wisdom (paññājīviṃ jīvitaṃ): A householder lives by wisdom when he works at an honourable occupation, goes for refuge, gives alms, observes the precepts, and fulfils the Uposatha duties, etc. One gone forth as a monk lives by wisdom when he undertakes pure virtue and the superior practices beginning with purification of mind.

Spk: A householder who lives by wisdom (paññājīvī) is one who becomes established in the Five Precepts and offers regular almsfood, etc.; one gone forth who lives by wisdom uses his requisites with proper reflection, takes up a meditation subject, sets up insight, and attains the noble paths and fruits.

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Re: SN 1.73 Vitta Treasure

Postby mikenz66 » Tue Apr 22, 2014 3:05 am

It is worthwhile to compare the translations and notes of the second verse with the two translations given here:


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Re: SN 1.73 Vitta Treasure

Postby Coyote » Wed Apr 23, 2014 12:32 pm

I don't have much of value to add, but that I like Ven. Thanissaro's translation of Discernment instead of Wisdom - as it highlights the effort needed on the path, rather than something which could be taken to be passive.
Another observation is that many of these suttas, including the extended SN 10.12 seem to present a gradual path, starting with saddha and ending with panna.
"If beings knew, as I know, the results of giving & sharing, they would not eat without having given, nor would the stain of miserliness overcome their minds. Even if it were their last bite, their last mouthful, they would not eat without having shared."
Iti 26

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