Sariputta | Dhammapada | The Story of a Brahmin Sariputta

The Story of a Brahmin

While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (216) of this book, with reference to a brahmin who was a farmer.

The brahmin lived in Savatthi, and he was a non-Buddhist. But the Buddha knew that the brahmin would attain Sotapatti Fruition in the near future. So the Buddha went to where the brahmin was ploughing his field and talked to him. The brahmin became friendly and was thankful to the Buddha for taking an interest in him and his work in the field. One day, he said to the Buddha, "Samana Gotama, when I have gathered my rice from this field, I will first offer you some before I take it. I will not eat my rice until I have given you some." However, the Buddha knew beforehand that the brahmin would not have the opportunity to harvest the rice from his field that year, but he kept silent.

Then, on the night before the brahmin was to harvest his rice, there was a heavy downpour of rain which washed away the entire crop of rice. The brahmin was very much distressed, because he would no longer be able to offer any rice to his friend, the Samana Gotama.

The Buddha went to the house of the brahmin and the brahmin talked to him about the great disaster that had befallen him. In reply, the Buddha said, "Brahmin, you do not know the cause of sorrow, but I know. If sorrow and fear arise, they arise because of craving."

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:

Verse 216: Craving begets sorrow, craving begets fear. For him who is free from craving there is no sorrow; how can there be fear for him?

At the end of the discourse the brahmin attained Sotapatti Fruition.
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