SN 4.9 Human Life is Short

Paṭhamaāyu Sutta


So have I heard,


Once the Awakened One was living in Rājagahe

In the bamboo grove,

The squirrel feeding park.


Then the Beloved One addressed the monks saying:


“Bhadante” the monks replied.


The Awakened One said this:

“Short-lived is a human life monks! [1]

Swiftly one has to depart to the next life,

Good deeds should be done,

The spiritual life should be lived. [2]


None who take birth are exempt from death. [3]

Whoever lives long,

only does for about hundred years,

not much more.”



Then Māra, The Wicked,

went to the Awakened One

and spoke these verses:



Long is the human life,

Good people do not despise it

One should enjoy it like a breastfed suckling,

Death isn’t near coming![4]


[The Buddha]

“Short-lived is human life,

Good people should see the danger,

And practice like their heads were on fire,

There is none for whom death doesn’t come.” [5]


Then Māra … disappeared right there.



[1] “Appamidaṃ, bhikkhave, manussānaṃ āyu.

[2] Gamanīyo samparāyo, kattabbaṃ kusalaṃ, caritabbaṃ brahmacariyaṃ.

[3] Natthi jātassa amaraṇaṃ.

[4] “Dīghamāyu manussānaṃ, na naṃ hīḷe suporiso; Careyya khīramattova,natthi maccussa āgamo”ti.

[5] “Appamāyu manussānaṃ, hīḷeyya naṃ suporiso; Careyyādittasīsova, natthi maccussa nāgamo”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.