View Full Version : Chapter XIX. The Just

June 24th, 2008, 01:30 AM


256., 257. A man is not just if he carries a matter by violence; no, he who distinguishes both right and wrong, who is learned and leads others, not by violence, but by law and equity, and who is guarded by the law and intelligent, he is called just.

258. A man is not learned because he talks much; he who is patient, free from hatred and fear, he is called learned.

259. A man is not a supporter of the law because he talks much; even if a man has learnt little, but sees the law bodily, he is a supporter of the law, a man who never neglects the law.

260. A man is not an elder because his head is grey; his age may be ripe, but he is called 'Old-in-vain.'

261. He in whom there is truth, virtue, love, restraint, moderation, he who is free from impurity and is wise, he is called an elder.

262. An envious, greedy, dishonest man does not become respectable by means of much talking only, or by the beauty of his complexion.

263. He in whom all this is destroyed, and taken out with the very root, he, when freed from hatred and wise, is called respectable.

[259. Buddhaghosa here takes law (dhamma) in the sense of the four great truths, see note to verse 190 (http://sacred-texts.com/bud/sbe10/sbe1016.htm#pp_190). Could dhammam kÔyena passati mean, 'he observes the law in his acts?' Hardly, if we compare expressions like dhammam vipassato, v. 373 (http://sacred-texts.com/bud/sbe10/sbe1027.htm#pp_373).]

264. Not by tonsure does an undisciplined man who speaks falsehood become a Samana; can a man be a Samana who is still held captive by desire and greediness?

265. He who always quiets the evil, whether small or large, he is called a Samana (a quiet man), because he has quieted all evil.

266. A man is not a mendicant (Bhikshu) simply because he asks others for alms; he who adopts the whole law is a Bhikshu, not he who only begs.

267. He who is above good and evil, who is chaste, who with knowledge passes through the world, he indeed is called a Bhikshu.

268., 269. A man is not a Muni because he observes silence (mona, i.e. mauna), if he is foolish

[265. This is a curious etymology, because it shows that at the time when this verse was written, the original meaning of sramana had been forgotten. Sramana meant originally, in the language br the Brahmans, a man who performed hard penances, from sram, 'to work hard,' &c. When it became the name of the Buddhist ascetics, the language had changed, and sramana was pronounced samana. Now there is another Sanskrit root, sam, 'to quiet,' which in PÔli becomes likewise sam, and from this root sam, 'to quiet,' and not from sram, 'to tire,' did the popular etymology of the day and the writer of our verse derive the title of the Buddhist priests. The original form sramana became known to the Greeks as {Greek: Sarmanai}, that of samana as {Greek: Samanaioi}; the former through Megasthenes, the latter through Bardesanes, 80-60 B.C. (See Lassen, Indische Alterthumskunde, II, 700.) The Chinese Shamen and the Tungusian Shamen come from the same source, though the latter has sometimes been doubted. See Schott, ▄ber die doppelte Bedeutung des Wortes Schamane, in the Philosophical Transactions of the Berlin Academy, 1842, p. 463 seq.

266-270. The etymologies here given of the ordinary titles of the followers of Buddha are entirely fanciful, and are curious only as showing how the people who spoke PÔli had lost the etymological consciousness of their language. A Bhikshu is a beggar, i.e. a Buddhist friar who bas left his family and lives entirely on alms. Muni is a sage, hence SÔkya-muni, a name of Gautama. Muni comes from man, 'to think,' and from muni comes mauna, 'silence.' Ariya, again, is the general name of those who embrace a religious life. It meant originally 'respectable, noble.' In verse 270 it seems as if the writer wished to guard against deriving ariya from ari, 'enemy.' See note to verse 22 (http://sacred-texts.com/bud/sbe10/sbe1004.htm#pp_22).] and ignorant; but the wise who, taking the balance, chooses the good and avoids evil, he is a Muni, and is a Muni thereby; he who in this world weighs both sides is called a Muni.

270. A man is not an elect (Ariya) because he injures living creatures; because he has pity on all living creatures, therefore is a man called Ariya.

271., 272. Not only by discipline and vows, not only by much learning, not by entering into a trance, not by sleeping alone, do I earn the happiness of release which no worldling can know. Bhikshu, be not confident as long as thou hast not attained the extinction of desires.

[272. See Childers, Notes, p. 7.]