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Therigatha VI

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
For free distribution only.

VI.1 -- Pañcasata Patacara [go to top]

"You don't know
    the path
of his coming or going,
that being who has come
    from         where? --
the one you lament as 'my son.'
But when you know
    the path
of his coming or going,
you don't grieve after him,
for that is the nature
    of beings.

he came from there.
Without permission,
he went from here --
coming from     where?
having stayed a few days.
And coming one way from here,
he goes yet another
    from there.
Dying in the human form,
he will go wandering on.
As he came, so he has gone --
    so what is there
    to lament?"

Pulling out
    -- completely out --
the arrow so hard to see,
embedded in my heart,
he expelled from me
    -- overcome with grief --
the grief
over my son.

Today -- with arrow removed,
    without hunger, entirely
        Unbound --
to the Buddha, Dhamma, & Sangha I go,
    for refuge to
    the Sage.

VI.2 -- Vasitthi the Madwoman [go to top]

Overwhelmed with grief for my son --
    naked, demented,
    my hair dishevelled
    my mind deranged --
I went about here & there,
living along the side of the road,
in cemeteries & heaps of trash,
    for three full years,
afflicted with hunger & thirst.

Then I saw
the One Well-gone,
gone to the city of Mithila:
    tamer of those untamed,
    with nothing to fear
    from anything, anywhere.

Regaining my mind,
paying him homage,
    I sat myself down.
He, Gotama, from sympathy
taught me the Dhamma.
Hearing his Dhamma,
I went forth into homelessness.
Applying myself to the Teacher's words,
I realized the state of auspicious bliss.

All griefs have been cut off,
        brought to this end,
for I've comprehended
the grounds from which griefs
come into play.

VI.5 -- Anopama, the Millionaire's Daughter [go to top]

Born in a high-ranking family
with much property, great wealth,
consummate in complexion & figure,
I was the daughter of Majjha, the treasurer.
Sons of kings sought for me,
sons of rich merchants
    longed for me.
One of them sent my father a messenger,
saying, "Give me Anopama.
I will give in return
    eight times her weight
    in jewels & gold."
But I, having seen
    the One Self-awakened,
    unsurpassed, excelling the world,
paid homage to his feet,
sat down to one side.
He, Gotama, from sympathy,
taught me the Dhamma.
And as I sat in that very seat,
    I attained the third fruit
    [of non-return.]
Then I cut off my hair,
and went forth into homelessness.
Today is the seventh day
since I made craving
    wither away.

Revised: Tue 15 May 2001