Dhaniya Sutta: Dhaniya the Cattleman

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Dhaniya Sutta: Dhaniya the Cattleman

Postby jcsuperstar » Tue Nov 17, 2009 2:14 pm

Snp 1.2 PTS: Sn 18-34
Dhaniya Sutta: Dhaniya the Cattleman
translated from the Pali by
Thanissaro Bhikkhu

Dhaniya the cattleman: [1]
"The rice is cooked,
my milking done.
I live with my people
along the banks of the Mahi;
my hut is roofed, my fire lit:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The Buddha:
"Free from anger,
my stubbornness gone, [2]
I live for one night
along the banks of the Mahi;
my hut's roof is open, my fire out: [3]
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

Dhaniya:
"No mosquitoes or gadflies
are to be found.
The cows range in the marshy meadow
where the grasses flourish.
They could stand the rain if it came:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The Buddha:
"A raft, well-made,
has been lashed together. [4]
Having crossed over,
gone to the far shore,
I've subdued the flood.
No need for a raft
is to be found: [5]
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

Dhaniya:
"My wife is compliant, not careless,
is charming, has lived with me long.
I hear no evil about her at all:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The Buddha:
"My mind is compliant, released,
has long been nurtured, well tamed.
No evil is to be found in me:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

Dhaniya:
"I support myself on my earnings.
My sons live in harmony,
free from disease.
I hear no evil about them at all:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The Buddha:
"I'm in no one's employ, [6]
I wander the whole world
on the reward [of my Awakening].
No need for earnings
is to be found:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

Dhaniya:
"There are cows, young bulls,
cows in calf, & breeding cows,
& a great bull, the leader of the herd:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The Buddha:
"There are no cows, no young bulls,
no cows in calf or breeding cows,
no great bull, the leader of the herd: [7]
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

Dhaniya:
"The stakes are dug-in, immovable.
The new muñja-grass halters, well-woven,
not even young bulls could break:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The Buddha:
"Having broken my bonds
like a great bull,
like a great elephant
tearing a rotting vine,
I never again
will lie in the womb:
so if you want, rain-god,
go ahead & rain."

The great cloud rained down
straightaway,
filling the lowlands & high.
Hearing the rain-god pour down,
Dhaniya said:
"How great our gain
that we've gazed
on the Blessed One!
We go to him,
the One with vision,
for refuge.
May you be our teacher, Great Sage.
My wife & I are compliant.
Let's follow the holy life
under the One Well-gone.
Gone to the far shore
of aging & death,
let's put an end
to suffering & stress."

Mara: [8]
"Those with children
delight
because of their children.
Those with cattle
delight
because of their cows.
A person's delight
comes from acquisitions,
since a person with no acquisitions
doesn't delight."

The Buddha:
"Those with children
grieve
because of their children.
Those with cattle
grieve
because of their cows.
A person's grief
comes from acquisitions,
since a person with no acquisitions
doesn't grieve."
Notes
1.Dhaniya Gopa: Literally, one whose wealth is in cattle. According to the Commentary, his herd consisted of 30,000 head of cattle.
2.The first line in the Buddha's verse plays on words in the first line of Dhaniya's. "Free from anger" (akkodhano) plays on "rice is cooked" (pakkodano); and "stubbornness" (khilo) plays on "milk" (khiro).
3."Open" means having a mind not covered or concealed by craving, defilement, or ignorance. This image is also used in Ud 5.5 and Sn 4.4. "My fire out" refers to the fires of passion, aversion, & delusion; birth, aging, & death; sorrow, lamentation, pain, distress, & despair. See SN 35.28; Iti 93; and The Mind Like Fire Unbound.
4.The raft stands for the noble eightfold path. See passages 113 and 114 in The Wings to Awakening.
5.As this verse doesn't seem to be a direct response to the preceding one, the Commentary suggests that we are missing part of the conversation here. An alternative possibility is that the Buddha is engaging in word play — the word "crossed over" (tinna) being a pun on Dhaniya's reference to grass (tina).
6.According to the Commentary, the Buddha is not in anyone else's employ nor even in his own employ — i.e., he is not in the employ of craving.
7.The Buddha may be speaking literally here — he has no cattle, so there is no way that a heavy rain could cause him harm — but he may also be speaking metaphorically. See SN 4.19.
8.According to the Commentary, Mara suddenly comes on the scene to try — unsuccessfully — to prevent Dhaniya and his wife from going forth. His verses here, together with the Buddha's response, are also found at SN 4.8.
See also: AN 3.34; AN 7.6; AN 7.7; Ud 2.10.
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the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: Dhaniya Sutta: Dhaniya the Cattleman

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:06 am

Greetings,

It's a bit like a duet, with Mara coming in part way to do the obligatory rap.

:rofl:

In all seriousness, a nice little sutta to show the parallel situations faced by putthajanas and enlightened ones.

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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