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Esukari Sutta

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Tipitaka >> Sutta Pitaka >> Majjhima Nikaya >> Esukari Sutta

Translation by Sister Upalavanna


I heard thus. At one time the Blessed One was living in the monastery offered by Anàthapiïóika in Jet's grove in Sàvatthi. The Brahmin Esukàri approached the Blessed One, exchanged friendly greetings and sat on a side. The Brahmin Esukàri said to the Blessed One. `GoodGotama, the Brahmins appoint services to the Brahmins, warriors, the ordinary people and the low caste. Good Gotama the Brahmins appoint services to the Brahmins thus. A Brahmin should attend on a Brahmin, or a warrior should attend on a Brahmin, or an ordinary man should attend on a Brahmin or else one of low caste, should attend on a Brahmin. Brahmins appoint services to the warrior thus. A warrior should attend on a warrior, or an ordinary man should attend on a warrior, or else one of low caste should attend on a warrior. Brahmins appoint services to the ordinary man thus. An ordinary man should attend on an ordinary man, or else one of low caste should attend on him. Brahmins appoint services to one of low caste thus. One of low caste should attend on a person of low caste. Who else would attend on him? Good Gotama, the Brahmins appoint these four kinds of services. What has good Gotama to say about that?'

ßBrahmin, does all the world acknowledge, this appointment of services by the Brahmins?'

ßGood Gotama, that is not so.'

ßBrahmin, it is like a poor miserable man against his wish was told, here good man, you should eat meat and you should not spend money on it. In a likewise manner, without the consent of recluses and Brahmins, have appointed these four services. Brahmin, I do not say all services should be done. I do not say, all services should not be done. When doing those services if there is evil, that service is not good. I say it should not be done. When doing those services, if there is no evil, that service is good. I say it should be done. Brahmin, the warriors, should be questioned. When serving if there is evil and no good, and when serving if there is good and no evil, how would you serve in this case? The warriors replying correctly should reply thus. When serving if there is evil and no good, I will not do that service. When serving if there is good and no evil, I will do that service. Even the Brahmins, ... re ... . the ordinary class and the low caste should be questioned. When serving if there is evil and no good, and when serving if there is good and no evil, how would you serve in this case? One of low caste replying correctly should reply thus. When serving if there is evil and no good, I will not do that service. When serving if there is good and no evil, I will do that service. Brahmin, I do not see excellence, in a high clan, nor do I see any evil in a high clan. Brahmin, I do not see excellence, in noble appearance, nor do I see evil in noble appearance. Brahmin, I do not see excellence in great wealth, nor do I see evil in great wealth.

Brahmin, a certain one of high clan may destroy living things, take the not given, misbehave in sexuality, tell, lies, malicious things, talk roughly and frivolously, may have a coveting mind, angry mind and wrong view. Therefore I do not say there is excellence in high birth. A certain one of high clan may abstain, from destroying living things, taking, the not given, misbehaving in sexuality, telling, lies, malicious things, talking roughly and frivolously, may not, covet or bear an angry mind and would have right view. Therefore I do not say there is evil in high birth.

Brahmin, a certain one of noble appearance, ... re ... of great wealth may destroy living things, take the not given, misbehave in sexuality, tell, lies, malicious things, talk roughly and frivolously, may have a coveting mind, an angry mind and wrong view. Therefore I do not say there is excellence wealth. A certain wealthy one may abstain, from destroying living things, taking the not given, misbehaving in sexuality, telling, lies, malicious things, talking roughly and frivolously, may not bear, a coveting mind, or angry mind and would have right view. Therefore I do not say there is evil in wealth. I do not say everything should be followed after, nor do I say everything should not be followed after. When following after something, if faith, virtues, learnedness, benevolence and wisdom increases, I say that, should be followed.'

When this was said, the Brahmin Esukàri said. `Good Gotama, the Brahmins give four wealths, one wealth for the Brahmins, another for the warriors, another for the ordinary and another for the low castes. Brahmins offer going for alms, for the Brahmins. Brahmins that belittle going for alms, dismiss it, and become cowherds, which is not their wealth. Brahmins give the wealth of the bow and arrow to the warriors. Warriors belittle the bow and arrow, dismiss it and become cowherds, which is not their wealth. Brahmins give agriculture and cattle rearing to the ordinary class. They belittle that, dismiss it and become cowherds, which is not their wealth. Brahmins give the wealth of the pingo to the low cast to carry, and dismiss dirt. They belittle it, dismiss it and become cowherds, which is not their wealth. What does good Gotama say about that?'.

ßBrahmin, does all the world acknowledge the offering of wealths by the Brahmins?'

ßGood Gotama, that is not so.'

ßBrahmin, it is like a poor miserable man against his wish was told, here good man, you should eat meat and you should not spend money on it. In a likewise manner, without the consent of recluses and Brahmins, have offered these four wealths.

ßBrahmin, I offer this noble wealth to humans, which is beyond this world. Earlier, humans recollect, the name and clan of their mother and father and are reckoned accordingly. If born with the warriors, he is reckoned a warrior, with the Brahmins a Brahmin, with the ordinary class, one of that class and with the low caste, one ofthat caste. Brahmin, just as on account of whatever, fire is burnt, on that it is reckoned. So fire that burns from twigs is twig fire, fire that burns with grass is grass fire, fire that burns from cow dung is cow dung fire. In the same manner, I offer this noble wealth to humans, which is beyond this world. Earlier, humans recollect the name and clan of their mother and father and are reckoned accordingly. If born with the warriors, he is reckoned a warrior, with the Brahmins a Brahmin, with the ordinary class, one of the ordinary class and with the low caste, one of them. Brahmin, even a warrior that goes forth ascetic, to the Dispensation declared by the Thus Gone One, abstains from, destroying life, taking the not given, sexual misbehaviour, telling lies, malicious things, rough talk and frivolous talk. He does not covet, bear an angry mind and comes to right view. Arouses effort for merit. Even a Brahmin, . re. even one of the ordinary class, . re ... even one of low caste, that goes forth ascetic, to the Dispensation declared by the Thus Gone One, abstains from, destroying life, taking the not given, sexual misbehaviour, telling lies, malicious things, rough talk and frivolous talk He does not covet, bear an angry mind and comes to right view. Arouses effort for merit. Brahmin, is it only a Brahmin, that could develop the thought of loving kindness, not a warrior, not one of the ordinary class and not one of the low caste?

ßNo good Gotama a warrior too could develop the thought of loving kindness, without anger and without ill will, a Brahmin too could, one of the ordinary class too could and one of the low caste too could develop the thought of loving kindness, without anger and ill will.'

ßBrahmin in the same manner, even a warrior could go forth ascetic to the Dispensation of the Thus Gone One, abstain from destroying life ... re ... and arouse effort for merit. Even a Brahmin could, even one of the ordinary class could and even one of low caste could go forth ascetic to the Dispensation of the Thus Gone One, abstain from destroying life, ... re ... and arouse effort for merit. Brahmin, is it only a Brahmin, that could take the soap and brush and wash his dust and dirt in the river, not a warrior, not one of ordinary class and not one of the low class?'

ßGood Gotama, that is not so, even a warrior could take the soap and brush and wash his dust and dirt in the river, even a Brahmin could, even one of ordinary class could and one of the low class too could take the soap and brush and wash his dust and dirt in the river.'

ßBrahmin in the same manner, even a warrior could go forth ascetic to the Dispensation of the Thus Gone One, abstain from destroying life ... re ... and arouse effort for merit. Even a Brahmin could, even one of the ordinary class could and even one of low caste could go forth ascetic to the Dispensation of the Thus Gone One, abstain from destroying life, ... re ... and arouse effort for merit.

Brahmin, a head anointed warrior king invites hundreds of people born in various clans, such as warrior, Brahmin, the ordinary class or low caste. Whether you are born in a hall, under a sweet scented tree, under a Chandana tree, or in a lotus, take an outer cover and make a fire. Come sirs, it does not matter, whether you are born with the out castes, low castes, bamboo weavers, or chariot makers, or the cleaners. Whether born in a trough of the, dogs, pigs, the washerman, or born in some brushwood. Take an outer cover and make a fire. If fire that has the flame, colour and lustre is made, could anything that is done with fire be done? Those born with the out castes, low castes, bamboo weavers, chariot makers or the cleaners, born in a trough of the dogs, pigs, the washerman, or born in a brush wood, would take an outer cover and make fire, would not that fire give the flame, colour and lustre and wouldn't whatever that should be done with the fire not be done?'

ßGood Gotama, that is not so, whatever clan it may be, warrior, Brahmin, the ordinary class or slaves. Whether born in a hall, under a sweet scented tree, under a Chandana tree, or in a lotus. If he takes an outer cover and makes a fire, it would have the flame, colour and lustre and whatever that could be done with fire could be done with it. Even those born with the out castes, low castes, bamboo weavers, or chariot makers, or the cleaners, whether born in a trough of the, dogs, pigs, the washerman, or born in some brushwood, the fire they make has the flame, colour and lustre and anything that is done with fire could be done with it. Good Gotama, all fire has the flame, colour and lustre and it is possible to do, whatever work that has to be done with fire.'

ßBrahmin in the same manner, even a warrior could go forth ascetic to the Dispensation of the Thus Gone One, abstain from destroying life ... re ... and arouse effort for merit. Even a Brahmin could, even one of the ordinary class could and even one of low caste could go forth ascetic to the Dispensation of the Thus Gone One, abstain from destroying life, ... re ... and arouse effort for merit.'

Then the Brahmin Esukàri said. `Now I know good Gotama ... re ... . may I be remembered as a lay disciple who has taken refuge from good Gotama from today until life lasts.

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