HeartDhamma

AN IX 3 To Meghiya: Beautiful Friendship

Meghiya Sutta

 

Thus I have heard,

Once, the Awakened One was living in Cālikā,

On Cālikā mountain.

 

On that occasion,

The venerable Meghiya was the Buddha’s attendant. [1]

 

Then the Venerable Meghiya went to the Buddha,

Paid loving respects, stood before him and asked:

 

[Alms in Jantu]

 

[Meghiya]

“Bhante, I would like to go for alms

in the village of Jantu.”

 

[The Buddha]    

“Do as you please Meghiya”

 

Then the Venerable Meghiya

Having dressed before noon,

Took his bowl and robe and went for alms in Jantu.

 

Having finished his round in the afternoon

He went to the shore of the Silkworm River.

And started walking up and down the riverbank to explore the surroundings

And he stumbled upon a mango grove

which was truly delightful, lovely and inspiring. [2]

 

As soon as he laid eyes upon it he though:

 

“This is an ideal place for a son of good family to devote himself to meditation.

If the Awakened One consents, I will come again to this mango grove for meditation.” [3]

 

Then the Venerable Meghiya went to the Awakened One

Paid loving respects and sat to the side and…

 

[after telling the Buddha all that had happened, put his request to him].

 

 

 

“If the Awakened One consents,

I will come again to this mango grove for meditation.”

 

When this was said, the Awakened One replied:

 

“Stay Meghiya, so long as we are alone,

But when another monk joins us, you may go.”[4]

 

For a second time, the Venerable Meghiya asked the Buddha:

 

“Bhante, the Awakened One has nothing more to accomplish,

And for him, nothing more could be understood to what has been done.”[5]

 

But for me Bhante,

There is much more to accomplish

And much more to understand.[6]

If the Awakened One consents,

I will come again to this mango grove for meditation.”

 

For a second time the Buddha replied in the same way.

 

For a third time, the Venerable Meghiya repeated his request:

 

“If the Awakened One consents,

I will come again to this mango grove for meditation.”

 

[The Buddha]    “Since you speak of meditation Meghiya, what could I say?

Do as you please Meghiya.” [7]

 

 

[The Mango Grove]

 

Then the Venerable Meghiya stood up,

Paid loving respects to the Awakened One and left

for the mango grove, walked right into it

And sat down at the root of a tree for the day.

 

But for that whole time,

He was chiefly overwhelmed by unskillful and unwholesome thoughts:

 

 

(1) Thoughts of sensory indulgence,

(2) Thoughts of dislike,

(3) Thoughts of violence. [8]

 

Then he thought:

 

“How unbelievable is this, how incredible is this?

With much faith, I left the [family] house life for the homeless [spiritual seeking] life. [9]

And even then, these unwholesome and unskillful thoughts have a hold on me!” [10]

 

Then sometime in the evening,

He came out of retreat and approached the Awakened One…

 

[And told him all that had happened]

 

 

[The Liberation of the Heart]

 

[The Buddha]

 

“When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

Five things lead to its ripening.” [11]

 

What five?

 

[1. Beautiful Friendship]

 

Here Meghiya,

One has wise friends,

Wise company,

Wise companions.[12]

 

When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

This is the first thing that leads to its ripening.

 

 

[2. Good Nature]

 

Further Meghiya,

 

One is good in nature,

Protected and mastered of the Pātimokkha,

Continually living in righteous behavior,

Seeing danger in the smallest lapse of attention

Undertaking the training in the virtues,[13]

 

When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

This is the second thing that leads to its ripening.[14]

 

 

[3. Listening to Discourses]

 

Further Meghiya,

 

One goes and listens to discourses

On the direct practice of the higher life,

[Which leads] To opening up the heart,

Unfailing letting go,

Calming down,

Release,

Appeasement,

Direct knowledge,

Full awakening,

Nibbāna,

That is: [15]

Talks on having few desires,

Talks on contentment,

Talks on retreating,

Talks on distancing [from society],

Talks on practicing whole-heartedly,

Talks on virtue,

Talks on mental development, 

Talks on discernment,

Talks on Unbinding,

Talks on the seeing and experiencing Unbinding. [16]

 

Such talks, one has access to at will,

Without any trouble or obstruction. [17]

 

When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

This is the third thing that leads to its ripening.

 

 

[4. Inspiration]

 

Further Meghiya,

 

One lives, determined and inspired;

For giving up unwholesome states of mind;

For the increase of wholesome ones;

 

With firm resolution and unflinching endurance in wholesome states.[18]

 

When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

This is the fourth thing that leads to its ripening.

 

 

[5. Discernment]

 

Further Meghiya,

 

One is discerning,

One is endowed with the wisdom that brings about the arising of happiness, [19]

The discernment of the Ariyas that brings about the complete end of trouble. [20]

 

When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

This is the fifth thing that leads to its ripening.

 

When the liberation of the heart has still not yet come to maturity Meghiya,

These are the five things that leads to its ripening.

 

 

[Beautiful Friendship]

 

[1. Good Nature]

 

Meghiya,

It can be expected of one with

Wise friends

Wise company,

Wise companions

 

That this person will be good in nature, [21]

Self-mastered and protected by the Pātimokkha

Continually living in righteous behavior,

Seeing danger in the smallest lapse of attention 

Undertaking the training in the virtues,

 

 

[2. Listening to Discourses]

Meghiya,

It can be expected of one with

Wise friends,

Wise company,

Wise companions

 

That this person will go to those talks

On the direct practice of the higher life

[Which leads] To open up the heart,

To unfailing letting go,

Calming down,

Release,

Appeasement,

Direct knowledge,

Full awakening,

And Nibbāna,

That is:

Talks on having few desires,

Talks on contentment,

Talks on retreating,

Talks on distancing [from society]

Talks on practicing whole-heartedly,

Talks on virtue,

Talks on mental development, 

Talks on discernment,

Talks on Unbinding,

Talks on the seeing and experiencing Unbinding.

 

Such talks, one will have access to at will,

Without any trouble or obstruction.

 

 

[3. Inspiration]

Meghiya,

It can be expected of one with

Wise friends,

Wise company,

Wise companions; 

 

That one will live, determined and inspired;

For giving up unwholesome states of mind;

For the increase of wholesome ones;

 

With firm resolution and unflinching endurance in wholesome states.

 

 

[4. Discernment]

Meghiya,

It can be expected of one with

Wise friends

Wise company,

Wise companions;

 

That this person will be discerning

Endowed with the wisdom of that brings about the arising of happiness,

The discernment of the Ariyas that brings about the complete end of trouble.

 

 

[Cultivating Further]

 

 Then Meghiya,

When one is firmly established in these five things,

One should develop further in these four things: [22]

 

(5) Unattractiveness should be cultivated to give up longing; [23]

(6) Boundless Love should be cultivated to give up resentment; [24]

(7) Meditation using the breath as a reminder should be cultivated to cut through thinking; [25]

(8) The perception of constant change should be cultivated to uproot personal pride. [26]

 

 

Meghiya,

For one who perceives constant change,

The perception of impersonality comes to be integrated,

One who becomes aware of the lack of a self

[Directly] uproots personal pride

And attains Nibbāna here and now. [27]

 

 


[1] āyasmā meghiyo bhagavato upaṭṭhāko hoti.

[2] jaṅghāvihāraṃ anucaṅkamamāno anuvicaramāno ambavanaṃ pāsādikaṃ manuññaṃ ramaṇīyaṃ.

[3] Sace maṃ bhagavā anujāneyya, āgaccheyyāhaṃ imaṃ ambavanaṃ padhānāyā”ti.

[4] “āgamehi tāva, meghiya, ekakamhi tāva, yāva aññopi koci bhikkhu āgacchatī”ti.

[5] “bhagavato, bhante, natthi kiñci uttari karaṇīyaṃ, natthi katassa vā paticayo.

[6] Mayhaṃ kho pana, bhante, atthi uttari karaṇīyaṃ, atthi katassa paticayo.

[7] “Padhānanti kho, meghiya, vadamānaṃ kinti vadeyyāma? Yassadāni tvaṃ, meghiya, kālaṃ maññasī”ti.

[8] Atha kho āyasmato meghiyassa tasmiṃ ambavane viharantassa yebhuyyena tayo pāpakā akusalā vitakkā samudācaranti, seyyathidaṃ— kāmavitakko, byāpādavitakko, vihiṃsāvitakko.

[9] “acchariyaṃ vata bho, abbhutaṃ vata bho.   Saddhāya ca vatamhā agārasmā anagāriyaṃ pabbajitā.

[10] Atha ca panimehi tīhi pāpakehi akusalehi vitakkehi anvāsattā,  seyyathidaṃ—

[11] “Aparipakkāya, meghiya, cetovimuttiyā pañca dhammā paripākāya saṃvattanti.

[12] Idha, meghiya, bhikkhu kalyāṇamitto hoti kalyāṇasahāyo kalyāṇasampavaṅko.

[13] Puna caparaṃ, meghiya, bhikkhu sīlavā hoti, pātimokkhasaṃvarasaṃvuto viharati ācāragocarasampanno, aṇumattesu vajjesu bhayadassāvī, samādāya sikkhati sikkhāpadesu.

[14] Aparipakkāya, meghiya, cetovimuttiyā ayaṃ dutiyo dhammo paripākāya saṃvattati.

[15] Puna caparaṃ, meghiya, bhikkhu yāyaṃ kathā abhisallekhikā  cetovivaraṇasappāyā ekantanibbidāya  virāgāya nirodhāya upasamāya  abhiññāya sambodhāya nibbānāya saṃvattati, seyyathidaṃ—

[16] appicchakathā, santuṭṭhikathā, pavivekakathā, asaṃsaggakathā, vīriyārambhakathā, sīlakathā, samādhikathā, paññākathā, vimuttikathā,  vimuttiñāṇadassanakathā;

[17] evarūpāya kathāya nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī.

[18] Puna caparaṃ, meghiya, bhikkhu āraddhavīriyo viharati, akusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ pahānāya,  kusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ upasampadāya, thāmavā daḷhaparakkamo anikkhittadhuro  kusalesu dhammesu.

[19] udayatthagāminiyā paññāya samannāgato: More classical translation might be: ‘Endowed with the wisdom that leads to [seeing] arising and passing away.’

[20] Puna caparaṃ, meghiya, bhikkhu paññavā hoti udayatthagāminiyā paññāya samannāgato ariyāya nibbedhikāya  sammā dukkhakkhayagāminiyā.

[21] Kalyāṇamittassetaṃ, meghiya, bhikkhuno pāṭikaṅkhaṃ kalyāṇasahāyassa kalyāṇasampavaṅkassa yaṃ sīlavā bhavissati,

[22] Tena ca pana, meghiya, bhikkhunā imesu pañcasu dhammesu patiṭṭhāya cattāro dhammā uttari bhāvetabbā—

[23] asubhā bhāvetabbā rāgassa pahānāya,

[24] mettā bhāvetabbā byāpādassa pahānāya,

[25] ānāpānassati bhāvetabbā vitakkupacchedāya,   

[26] aniccasaññā bhāvetabbā asmimānasamugghātāya.   

[27] Aniccasaññino hi, meghiya, anattasaññā saṇṭhāti, anattasaññī asmimānasamugghātaṃ pāpuṇāti diṭṭheva dhamme nibbānan”ti.

 

 

This is a gift of Dhamma

All Sutta Translations by Ānanda are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.