HeartDhamma

AN IV 51 Overflowing Rivers of Goodness (1)

Paṭhamapuññābhisanda Sutta

 

In Sāvatthi.

 

“Monks,

There are four overflowing [rivers] of goodness

Overflowing [rivers] of wholesomeness,

Nourishing happiness,

Heavenly,

Ripening in what is good,

Leading to the happy states;

 

Which bring what is desirable,

Lovely, 

Delightful, 

Beneficial and blissful. [1]

 

What four?

 

[1. Robes that are Given]

 

Monks,

Any monk or nun who only wears robes that are offered to them,

Who abide practicing the unlimited collectedness [2] of mind, [3]

 

This is an unlimited overflowing [river] of merit, 

Overflowing [river] of wholesomeness,

Nourishing happiness,

Leading to the happy states;

 

That bring what is desirable,

Lovely,

Delightful,

Beneficial and blissful.

 

[2. Food that is Given]

 

Monks,

Any monk or nun who only eats alms food that is offered to them [4]

Who abide practicing the unlimited collectedness of mind,

 

This is an unlimited overflowing [river] of merit, 

Overflowing [river] of wholesomeness,

Nourishing happiness,

Leading to the happy states;

 

That bring what is desirable,

Lovely,

Delightful,

Beneficial and blissful.

 

[3. Residences that are Given]

 

Monks,

Any monk or nun who only stays in residences that is offered to them, [5]

Who abide practicing the limitless collectedness of mind,

 

This is an unlimited overflowing [river] of merit, 

Overflowing [river] of wholesomeness,

Nourishing happiness,

Leading to the happy states;

 

That bring what is desirable,

Lovely,

Delightful,

Beneficial and blissful.

 

[4. Medicines that are Given]

 

Monks,

Any monk or nun who only uses medicines and medical treatments that is offered to them, [6]

Who abide practicing the limitless collectedness of mind,

 

This is an unlimited overflowing [river] of merit, 

Overflowing [river] of wholesomeness,

Nourishing happiness,

Leading to the happy states;

 

That bring what is desirable,

Lovely,

Delightful,

Beneficial and blissful.

 

These are the four overflowing [rivers] of merit

Overflowing [rivers] of wholesomeness,

Nourishing happiness […]

 

֎

 

When a wise follower is endowed

with these four overflowing [rivers] of merit,

It is not easy to grasp the amount of merit thinking: [7]

 

“‘Just this much’ is the overflowing [river] of merit…”

 

It can only be understood as an incalculable,

Immeasurable great mass of merit. [8]

 

[The Water in the Ocean]

 

Just as it is not easy to grasp

the amount of water in the great ocean thinking:[9]

 

“There are just  

this many buckets of water, or

this many hundreds of buckets of water, or

this many thousands of buckets of water, or

this many hundreds of thousands buckets of water.”

 

It can only be understood as an incalculable,

Immeasurable great mass of merit.

 

When an awakened follower is endowed

with these four overflowing [rivers] of merit,

It is not easy to grasp the amount of merit thinking:

 

‘Just this much’ is the overflowing [river] of merit…

 

It can only be understood as an incalculable,

Immeasurable great mass of merit.

 

֎

 

“Just as the boundless sea, the great ocean,

 Is the majestic repository of precious wonders; [10]

And just as all the rivers of this earth,

Which sustain entire nations, all flow to the ocean. [11]

 

Likewise, to those who give food, beverages and robe cloth,

 Givers of beds, places to sit and coverings;  [12]

Those rivers of goodness flow to that wise person,

 Just as the rivers carry their water to the sea.” [13]

 

 


[1] “Cattārome, bhikkhave, puññābhisandā kusalābhisandā sukhassāhārā sovaggikā sukhavipākā saggasaṃvattanikā iṭṭhāya kantāya manāpāya hitāya sukhāya saṃvattanti.

[2] Appamāṇaṃ cetosamādhiṃ: Usually ascribed to the four brāhmavihāras but also associated with any mental unity which is free from greed, hate and delusion, the makers of limits.

[3] Yassa, bhikkhave, bhikkhu cīvaraṃ paribhuñjamāno appamāṇaṃ cetosamādhiṃ upasampajja viharati,

[4] piṇḍapātaṃ paribhuñjamāno

[5] senāsanaṃ paribhuñjamāno

[6] gilānappaccayabhesajjaparikkhāraṃ paribhuñjamāno

[7] catūhi puññābhisandehi kusalābhisandehi samannāgatassa ariyasāvakassa na sukaraṃ puññassa pamāṇaṃ gahetuṃ:

[8] Atha kho asaṅkhyeyyo appameyyo mahāpuññakkhandhotveva saṅkhyaṃ gacchati.

[9] Seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, mahāsamudde na sukaraṃ udakassa pamāṇaṃ gahetuṃ:

[10] Mahodadhiṃ aparimitaṃ mahāsaraṃ, Bahubheravaṃ ratanavarānamālayaṃ;

[11] Najjo yathā naragaṇasaṅghasevitā, Puthū savantī upayanti sāgaraṃ.

[12] Evaṃ naraṃ annadapānavatthadaṃ, Seyyānisajjattharaṇassa dāyakaṃ;

[13] Puññassa dhārā upayanti paṇḍitaṃ, Najjo yathā vārivahāva sāgaran”ti.

 
 

 

 

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