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dig the earth; not to engage in the decoction of medicines; not to practise divination, or casting lucky or unlucky days; not to study the stars or the movements of constellations; not to predict times of plenty or scarcity; not to enter on calculations of any sort: all these things are forbidden. Keep the body temperate in all things, and the vital functions in quiet subjection. Have nothing to do with worldly engagements, either in seeking places of authority, or pronouncing incantations, or courting the rich, or planning for the welfare of your worldly relatives. But, by self-control and right modes of thought, aim at emancipation; conceal none of your faults, but confess them before the congregation ; be moderate and contented with the food, clothing, medicines, and bedding allowed you [Jul. i. 152), and be cautious against hoarding up that which is allowed. These are the Rules of Discipline, the observance of which is the true source of emancipation, and hence they are called The Rules of the Pratimoksha. Keep then these precepts in their purity, oh Bhikshus! Let there be no careless negligence in this matter; the man who carefully observes them shall have power to fulfil all the duties of Religion; the man who disregards them shall experience none of the rewards which a virtuous life is able to afford. And for this reason it is I bid you remember that the knowledge and practice of these Rules is the first and chief necessity for attaining religious merit and
“If, Bhikshus ! ye have attended to this point, and have observed the precepts religiously, then continue to keep the five organs of sense in due check, not permitting them a loose rein, or to engage in the pursuit of pleasure (the five pleasures); just as a shepherd with his crook prevents the cattle from straying into the neighbouring pastures. But if you restrain not your senses, but permit them the indulgence of the five pleasures, and put no check upon them, then, like a vicious horse unchecked by the bridle hurries on and throws its rider into the ditch, so shall it be with you; your senses getting the mastery of you, shall eventually hurry you on to the place of torment, where you shall endure untold misery for the period of an age (sæculum), without any mode of escape or deliverance. The wise man, therefore, restrains his senses, and permits them not free indulgence—he keeps thèm fast bound, as robbers are held in bonds, and doing so he soon feels their power to hurt utterly destroyed. The heart (sin) is Lord of these
senses; govern, therefore, your heart well; watch well the heart, for it is like a noxious snake, a wild beast, a cruel robber, a great fire, and worse even than these. It may be compared to a man who is holding in his hand a vessel full of honey, and as he goes on his way his eyes are so bent in gazing on the sweet treasure in his dish, that he sees not the dreadful chasm in his way, down which he falls. It is like a mad elephant unchecked by the pointed crook-or like the ape which is allowed to escape into the tree, quickly it leaps from bough to bough, difficult to re-capture and chain up once more. Restrain, therefore, and keep in complete subjection your heart;
let it not get the mastery; persevere in this, oh Bhikshus! and all shall be well.
“With respect to food and drink, whether you have received common or dainty food, let it not excite in you either undue gratification or regret; and the same with clothing and medicinal preparations—take sufficient and be satisfied; even as the butterfly sips the honey of the flower and departs, so do ye, oh Bhikshus ! seek not more than is necessary: be satisfied with what is given to you, just as the wise man calculates the strength of the ox he uses, and gives it as much food as is necessary for it.
“ Be careful, oh Bhikshus! to waste no time, but earnestly to perserere in acquiring a knowledge of the true Law. On the first and last nights of the month continue in the repetition of the Sacred Books without cessation. It is sloth and love of sleep that cause a whole life to be thrown away and lost.
“ Think of the fire that shall consume the world, and early seek deliverance from it, and give not way to sleep. A man who indulges in immoderate sleep can have no inward satisfaction or self-respect; there is always a snake of dissatisfaction coiled up in his breast : whereas he who denies himself this indulgence is like the man who rises early, and, sweeping out his house, expels all that is hurtful, and so has continual safety and peace. Above all things, let modesty govern every thought and every word of your daily life — a man without modesty is in no way different from the brute beast.
“ Bhikshus! if a man should do you such injury as to chop your body in pieces limb' by limb, yet you ought to keep your heart in perfect control; no anger or resentment should affect you, nor a word of reproach escape your lips; for if you once give way to a bitter
thought, you have erred from the right way, and all religious merit is lost. Patience is a virtue (this is the literal translation of the passage 'Jin che wei tih'); to keep the Rules of moral restraint without wavering, to exercise patience without tiring, this is the characteristic of the great man. If a man, because he does not enjoy everything as he would wish, loses patience, he is like a man who will not enter on the Path of Salvation, because he cannot immediately quaff the sweet dew (i.e. attain immortality)."
The Text then proceeds to speak of the advantage of moderation in all indulgences (pleasures), the happiness of a solitary life; " for they who live in mixed society are like the birds that congregate together in a tree, always afraid of the traps of the fowler; or like the old elephant in the mud unable to extricate himself. Continual perseverance is like a little fire that keeps on burning, but he who tires in the practice of Religion is like a fire that goes out. Such is perseverance (varya).
“You ought, also, never to forget self-examination and reflection (nim, i.e. sraddha); if you neglect these, then all progress is at an end-in the practice of these you put on, as it were, a helmet of defence, so that no sword can hurt you, and no enemy get the advantage over you.
“You ought to keep your mind fixed in contemplation (dhyana) -by perseverance, this power of fixed contemplation is always ready, even as water kept in the house is always ready for laying the dust out of doors. And so he who continues in the practice of dhyâna shall undoubtedly attain wisdom (Prajña); and this is the Deliverance spoken of in my Law. And true wisdom is this: to cross the sea of old age, disease, and death, in a strong and trustworthy boat. It is a lamp shining in darkness, a medicine for all diseases, a hatchet to cut down the tree of sorrow, and for this reason you ought to aim above all things to attain this wisdom, and so bring to yourself lasting benefit. A man who has this wisdom is perfectly illuminated, and needs no other
eyes. " Again, Bhikshus, if ye would obtain final release, you must put away from you all the foolish books (trifling discourses) met with in the world. Think only on the words I have given you, whether in the mountain pass or the depth of the valley, whether beneath the tree or in the solitary cell; think of the Scriptures (Law), and forget
them not for a moment, persevere in studying them alone; I, as the good Physician, knowing the disease which affects you, give this as a medicine fit for the case : without this, you die. Or, like the guide who knows the way, I direct you where to go and what path to take: without a guide, you perish.
“And now, if you have any doubts respecting the four great truths which lie at the bottom of my teaching, ask me, oh Bhikshus! and explain your doubts; for while you doubt there can be no fixity.”
This exhortation the world-honoured one repeated three times, but neither of the Bhikshus propounded any question, for so it was, they had no doubts.
Then Aniruddha, reading the hearts of the congregation, addressed Buddha, and said: “World-honoured ! the Moon may diffuse heat and the Sun cause cold—but there can be no difference as to the truth and meaning of the four great doctrines which Buddha has placed at the bottom of his system.
“There is the great Truth of 'Sorrow' (dukha). Sorrow can never co-exist with joy, or produce it. 'Concourse' (the expression “concourse," generally translated “accumulation,” evidently refers to the “rush or “concourse” of thoughts and events, experiences and anxieties, as the true cause of sorrow), this is the true cause (of sorrow), besides this there is no other. The destruction of sorrow' is just the destruction of cause, 'no cause, no fruit;' and 'the way' is this very way by which the cause may be destroyed, and this is the • true way,' and there is no other.
“World-honoured one! the Bhikshus are firmly fixed in these doctrines: there is not the shadow of a doubt, there is no question or difference of opinion in the congregation respecting them. The only thought which affects the congregation is one of grief that the worldhonoured one should be about to depart and enter Nirvana, just as we have begun to enter on the practice of his Law and understand its meaning; just as in the night a flash of lightning lights up the way for the weary traveller and then is gone, and he left to wander in the dark; this is the only thought which weighs on the mind of the congregation."
Nothwithstanding the assurance of Aniruddha, the world-honoured one, wishing that every member of the congregation should be strong
in his belief, and attain perfect assurance, again, out of his compassion, addressed them, and said :
“Bhikshus! lament not at my departure, nor feel any regret; for if I remained in the world through the Kalpa (i.e. to the end of the world), then what would become of the Church (assembly)? it must perish without accomplishing its end! and the end is this: 'by personal profit to profit others. My law is perfectly sufficient for this end. If I were to continue in the world, it would be for no good; those who were to be saved are saved, whether Gods or men; those who are not saved, shall be saved, by the seeds of truth I have sown. From henceforth, all my disciples practising their various duties, shall prove that my true Body, the Body of the Law (dharmakâya), is everlasting and imperishable.
“Be assured of this, the world is transitory; dismiss your sorrow, and seek deliverance; by the light of wisdom destroy the gloom of all your doubts. The world is fast bound in fetters and oppressed with affliction, I now give it deliverance, as a physician who brings heavenly medicine. Put away every sin and all wickedness; remember that your body' is but a word coined to signify that which does not really exist—ford across the sea of death, old age, and disease-Who is the wise man that does not rejoice in the destruction of these, as one rejoices when he slays the enemy who would rob him ?
“Bhikshus! keep your mind on this; all other things change, this changes not. No more shall I speak to you. I desire to depart. I desire Nirvana. This is my last exhortation.”
6. Another Sûtra worthy of notice is the Chong-Lun, or Pranyamula-shastra-tika, by Nagarjuna.
I shall proceed to give the translation of the 25th Section of this work on Nirvana.
(1) If all things are unreal,
Then how is it possible to remove
Something which, being removed, leaves Nirvana ? This section argues that if all things are alike empty and unreal, then there is no such thing as birth and death; consequently there can be no removal of sorrow, and the destruction of the five elements