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Nago Sutta

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Tipitaka >> Sutta Pitaka >> Samyutta Nikaya >> Nago Sutta

Translation by Bhikkhuni Uppalavanna


I heard thus. At one time the Blessed One was living in the monastery offered by Anathapindika in Jeta's grove in Sàvatthi.

At that time a certain novice monk used to approach families too much. Then the other monks said to him: "Friend, do not approach families too much."

Then he replied to those monks thus: "These elder monks think of approaching families, what does it matter if I do it?"

Then many monks approached the Blessed One, worshipped and sat on a side.

Sitting on a side those monks said to the Blessed One: "Venerable sir, a certain novice approaches families too much. Then the other monks said to him, `Friend, do not approach families too much,' and he replied to those monks saying, `The elder monks think of approaching families, what does it matter if I do it?'"

"Monks, in the past there was a huge pond in the forest, and elephants lived supported by it. Elephants descended the pond, pulled out lotus stalks with their trunks, washed them well and collected them away from the mud and ate them. On account of that they became beautiful and powerful and did not come to disaster or anything close to disaster.

"Monks, the young elephants and the little ones who followed the older elephants descended the pond, pulled out lotus stalks with their trunks, did not wash them well and collected them in the mud and ate them. On account of that they did not become beautiful and powerful and came to disaster or something close to disaster.

"Monks, in the same manner here some elder monks wear robes in the morning and taking bowls and robes enter some village or hamlet for alms food, there they preach the lay crowds. The pleased lay crowds express their pleasure. They partake those gains not enslaved, not swooned, without a guilt, seeing the danger and wise about the escape. On account of that they become beautiful and powerful and do not come to disaster or anything close to disaster.

"Monks, the novice monks trained by the elder monks wear robes in the morning and taking bowls and robes enter a village or hamlet for alms food.

"There they preach the lay crowds. The pleased lay crowds express their pleasure. The monks partake those gains enslaved, infatuated, guilty of an offence, not seeing the danger and not wise about the escape. On account of that they do not become beautiful and powerful and come to disaster or something close to disaster.

`Therefore, monks you should train thus: `We should partake gains not enslaved, not infatuated, not guilty of an offence, seeing the danger and wise about the escape.' Monks, you should train in this manner."

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