Young Man Nanda’s Questions

Nanda­māṇava­pucchā (Snp 5.8)

“‘There are sages in the world’,” said venerable Nanda,
“that is what people say—how is this so?
Do they say he is a sage because he has knowledge
Or because of the life he leads?”
“Not by view, tradition, or knowledge,
do the skilful say one is a sage here, Nanda.
Whoever lives without company, not troubled,
not yearning, they are sages, I say.”
“Whoever among these ascetics and brahmins,” said venerable Nanda,
“say that purity is through what is seen or heard,
say that purity is through virtue and practices,
say that purity is through countless other ways,
Gracious One, perhaps those living restrained in this way
have crossed over birth and old age, dear Sir?
I ask you, Gracious One, please tell this to me.”
“Whoever among these ascetics and brahmins, Nanda,” said the Gracious One,
“say that purity is through what is seen or heard,
say that purity is through virtue and practices,
say that purity is through countless other ways,
although they are living restrained in this way,
they have not crossed over bith and old age, I say.”
“Whoever among these ascetics and brahmins,” said venerable Nanda,
“say that purity is through what is seen or heard,
say that purity is through virtue and practices,
say that purity is through countless other ways,
if you say these sages have not crossed the flood,
then just who in the world of the gods and men
have crossed over birth and old age, dear Sir?
I ask you, Gracious One, please tell this to me.”
“I do not say that all ascetics and brahmins, Nanda,” said the Gracious One,
“are enveloped in birth and old age:
whoever here has given up reliance on what is seen,
heard, or sensed, and virtue and practices,
and has also given up all the countless other ways,
who, by fully knowing craving, are pollutant-free—
I say those men have crossed over the flood.”
“I greatly rejoice in the great seer’s word,
Gotama, well-proclaimed is freedom from clinging!
Whoever here has given up reliance on what is seen,
heard, or sensed, and virtue and practices,
and has also given up all the countless other ways,
who, by fully knowing craving, are pollutant-free—
I also say they have crossed over the flood.”

The Young Man Nanda’s Questions are Finished

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