Nandakovāda
Nandaka’s Advice
(MN 146 & MA)

Translated by Ānandajoti Bhikkhu
(August 2014/2558)

 

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Texts

Introduction

 

Nandaka’s Advice

Introduction

The Instruction on the Internal Sense Spheres

The Instruction on the External Sense Spheres

The Instruction on the Six Consciousnesses

The Oil Lamp Simile

The Big Tree Simile

The Cow Simile

The Key to the Cow Simile

The Factors of Awakening

The Gracious One’s Response

 

The Following Day

The Instruction on the Internal Sense Spheres

The Instruction on the External Sense Spheres

The Instruction on the Six Consciousnesses

The Oil Lamp Simile

The Big Tree Simile

The Cow Simile

The Key to the Cow Simile

The Factors of Awakening

The Gracious One’s Response

 

The Story about the Elder Nandaka

His Aspiration and Good Deeds

His Last Life

His Past Life

Teaching the Nuns

 

Texts

BJT: Sri Lankan edition, from the Buddha Jayanti Tripitaka Series, Volume XII (Colombo, 1974/2517, reprinted with corrections 2005).

PTS: European edition, Majjhima-nikāya, Vol. III, (London 1899, reprinted London, 1951). Heavily abbreviated, over and above the normal peyyāla passages, often without notice.

RTE: Royal Thai edition, as found on Budsir for Windows CD-ROM (version 2.0, Bangkok, 1996). This edition is the most problematic in its readings.

ChS: Burmese edition as found on the Chaṭṭha Saṅgāyana CD-ROM (version 3, Igaturi, no date but = 1999). Has all the normal problems associated with the Burmese texts, like spelling differences. Used for both texts and commentaries.

SHB: Sri Lankan edition of the Aṅguttara Commentary, The Majjhima Commentary from the same series was not available to me at this time01 from the Simon Hewavitarne Bequest series, Vol XV. Colombo 1923, reprinted Colombo 2007.

MLD: Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha, translated by Bhikkhu Ñāṇamoli and Bhikkhu Bodhi (2nd edition, Wisdom Publications, Somerville, 2001). The translation of this discourse takes up a mere 6 pages, and omits the repeition, which all the Eastern editions include in full.

There are quite a lot of variant readings in this text, most of which are trivial, being variant spellings or forms, etc. but some of which are important for a correct understanding of the text. Some of the more trivial variants, like writing class nasal or niggahīta, and the alternations between l/ḷ t/ṭ and n/ṇ I have ignored, in order to concentrate on true variations in reading.

With other readings, in line with my more recent practice on this site, I have tried to explain what the difference is between the form chosen and the variant, which is usually an alternative form, spelling or sandhi type. This will at least give some guidance as to why the reading has been chosen.

 

Introduction

This is an important discourse from the Majjhimanikāya in which the Buddha asks one of his senior disciples to give a teaching to the five-hundred nuns who went forth with Mahāpajāpatī Gotamī at their head, at the conclusion of which they all attained at least the level of Stream-Entry.

I have also translated two full commentaries connected to this discourse, the one on the discourse itself (MA), which I have interleaved with the discourse; and, in the Appendix, the story of Nandaka’s life as related in the Aṅguttara commentary (AA) on the Foremost Disciples.

The discourse records that the monk who gave the teaching, Nandaka, was initially reluctant to give a teaching to the nuns, but it gives no reason for his reluctance. The commentary explains that the group of nuns had been his wives in a previous existence and he thought if someone with knowledge of previous lives saw him teach them they might think he was still attached to them, so he would send another monk in his place.

However, when the Buddha asks him personally to teach he agrees to do so, and gives a teaching on the non-self nature of the internal and external sense spheres and the consciousness that arises dependent on them; which is followed by two similes that illustrate the dependent nature of all things in existence, one about an oil lamp and the other about the shadow of a tree.

That in turn is followed by a simile of a butchered cow, which shows that when attachments have been severed by wisdom, they cannot be reunited with their object again, anymore than the cow can be resuscitated once it has been slaughtered and cut apart.

Following each of these teachings, Nandaka asks if the nuns have understood the teaching, and each time they agree that formerly they had seen the truth and were aware of their significance.

Nandaka then gives a summary teaching on the seven factors of Awakening, which is apparently the only teaching new to them. At the conclusion, the nuns approach the Buddha, who understands that, although they had benefited from the teaching, their aspirations had not been fulfilled.

The Buddha therefore asks Nandaka to give the exact same teaching on the following night, and at the conclusion of that teaching, all of them attained Path and Fruit at least to the level of Stream Level, which is confirmed by the Buddha himself.

This summary is according to the discourse and its explanation as given in the Majjhima commentary. Curiously, the commentary to the Aṅguttara disagrees in certain crucial aspects of the story, and I give here a summary of some of the main differences that are found:

In the discourse, it is said that the nuns were left unfulfilled by the first teaching, and there is no indication that they had reached any level of attainment, but AA states that they attained Stream-Entry during this first teaching, and furthermore that they reported this to the Buddha, another matter which is entirely absent from the discourse.

In a similar way, in the discourse, at the conclusion of the second teaching the nuns attain at least Stream-Entry, but in AA they are said to have all attained complete Liberation (Arahatta).

There is another smaller discrepancy: at the conclusion of the teaching in the discourse it says that the nuns approached the Buddha, but in AA it says the Buddha approached the nuns.

As according to tradition the commentaries are both said to have been compiled by Bhadanta Buddhaghosa, it is hard to understand how such disagreements could have been left to stand. The Majjhima commentary draws on the Aṅguttara commentary almost verbatim for its story of both Mahāpajāpatī Gotamī together with the nuns, and Nandaka’s own story, so he must have been aware of the discrepancies, but has allowed them to stand, and not attempted to harmonise them, which after all, would not have been very hard to do.

In any case, as the teaching was so successful, at a later date the Buddha named Nandaka as the foremost of his monk disciples in teaching the nuns, and he has held a special position with the nuns because of that ever since.

One thing that I have long suspected I managed to confirm in making this translation: it seems that the nuns are largely absent in the discourses and that the Buddha nearly always addressed himself to the monks (bhikkhu).

Here, however, when Ven Nandaka addresses the nuns he says:

Satta kho ime, bhaginiyo, Bojjhaṅgā, yesaṁ bhāvitattā bahulīkatattā, bhikkhu āsavānaṁ khayā, anāsavaṁ, cetovimuttiṁ paññāvimuttiṁ, diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchikatvā upasampajja viharati.
There are these seven Factors of Awakening, sisters, which when developed and made much of, a bhikkhu, through the destruction of the pollutants, without pollutants, freed in mind, freed through wisdom, dwells having known, having directly experienced, and having attained (Nibbāna) himself in this very life.

here the word bhikkhu must include the nuns he is addressing and encouraging with the Dhamma talk, therefore I have now now come to the conclusion that when bhikkhu is said in the discourses it should be taken as referring to both male and female renunciants, and that a more appropriate term for translation than monk would be monastic, unless we specifically know that the nuns are absent (something which does happen sometimes, including in this discourse).

Ānandajoti Bhikkhu
August 2014

Nandakovāda
Nandaka’s Advice
(MN 146 & MA)

Introduction

Evaṁ me sutaṁ:
Thus I have heard:

‘Evaṁ me sutan’-ti Nandakovādasuttaṁ.
‘Thus I have heard’, this is the Discourse giving Nandaka’s Advice.

ekaṁ samayaṁ Bhagavā Sāvatthiyaṁ viharati
at one time the Gracious One was dwelling near Sāvatthī

Jetavane Anāthapiṇḍikassa ārāme.
at Anāthapiṇḍika’s grounds in Jeta’s Wood.

Atha kho Mahāpajāpatī Gotamī ChS: Mahāpajāpatigotamī, and similarly elsewhere; compound form.02 pañcamattehi bhikkhunīsatehi saddhiṁ
Then Mahāpajāpatī Gotamī together with at least five hundred nuns

yena Bhagavā tenupasaṅkami,
approached the Gracious One,

upasaṅkamitvā Bhagavantaṁ abhivādetvā ekam-antaṁ aṭṭhāsi.
and after approaching and worshipping the Gracious One, she stood on one side.

Ekam-antaṁ ṭhitā kho Mahāpajāpatī Gotamī Bhagavantaṁ etad-avoca:
While standing on one side Mahāpajāpatī Gotamī said this to the Gracious One:

“Ovadatu, Bhante, Bhagavā bhikkhuniyo,
“The Gracious One should advise the nuns, reverend Sir,

anusāsatu, Bhante, Bhagavā bhikkhuniyo,
the Gracious One should instruct the nuns, reverend Sir,

karotu, Bhante, Bhagavā bhikkhunīnaṁ Dhammiṁ kathan.”-ti RTE, PTS: Dhammikathan ti, and similarly elsewhere; alternative form.03
the Gracious One should give a Dhamma talk to the nuns, reverend Sir.”

Tena kho pana samayena
Then at that time

Tattha, ‘Tena kho pana samayenā,’ ti
Herein, ‘Then at that time,’

Bhagavā Mahāpajāpatiyā yācito, Bhikkhunisaṅghaṁ uyyojetvā,
when the Gracious One was requested by Mahāpajāpatī, after sending the Community of nuns away,

Bhikkhusaṅghaṁ sannipātetvā:
and gathering the Community of monks,

“Therā bhikkhū vārena bhikkhuniyo ovadantū,” ti
saying: “Elder monks must instruct the nuns in turns,”

Saṅghassa bhāraṁ akāsi.
he gave this task to the Community.

Taṁ sandhāyetaṁ vuttaṁ.
It was said regarding this.

Therā bhikkhū bhikkhuniyo ovadanti pariyāyena,
the Elder monks were advising the nuns in turns,

Tattha, ‘Pariyāyenā’ ti vārena.
Herein, ‘In turns’ means in order.

āyasmā pana ChS omits: pana, but then the meaning has to be supplied.04 Nandako na icchati bhikkhuniyo ovadituṁ pariyāyena.
but Venerable Nandaka did not wish to advise the nuns in (his) turn.

Atha kho Bhagavā āyasmantaṁ Ānandaṁ āmantesi:
Then the Gracious One addressed venerable Ānanda:

“Kassa nu kho, Ānanda, ajja pariyāyo bhikkhuniyo ovadituṁ pariyāyenā?” ti
“Whose turn is it today, Ānanda, to advise the nuns?”

“Nandakassa, Bhante, pariyāyo RTE, ChS: Sabbeheva, Bhante, kato pariyāyo; all of the (others), reverend Sir, have had a turn.05 bhikkhuniyo ovadituṁ pariyāyena,
“Reverend Sir, it is Nandaka’s turn to advise the nuns,

ayaṁ, Bhante, āyasmā Nandako na icchati bhikkhuniyo ovadituṁ pariyāyenā.” ti
(but) this venerable Nandaka does not wish to advise the nuns in (his) turn.”

‘Na icchatī,’ ti attano vāre sampatte,
‘Does not wish,’ means when his own turn arrived,

dūraṁ gāmaṁ vā gantvā, sūcikammādīni vā ārabhitvā,
having gone to a faraway village, or having begun his needlework and so on,

“Ayaṁ nāmassa papañco,” ti vadāpesi.
he had him say: “This is surely an obstacle for him.”

Imaṁ pana pariyāyena ovādaṁ Bhagavā Nandakattherasseva kāraṇā akāsi.
But the Gracious One gave this advice to the Elder Nandaka about taking turns.

Kasmā?
Why?

Imāsañhi bhikkhunīnaṁ Theraṁ disvā cittaṁ ekaggaṁ hoti pasīdati.
For when those nuns saw the Elder their mind became tranquil and clear.

Tena tā tassa ovādaṁ sampaṭicchitukāmā, Dhammakathaṁ sotukāmā.
Therefore they liked to accept his advice, and liked to listen to his talk on Dhamma.

Tasmā Bhagavā:
Therefore the Gracious One (said):

“Nandako attano vāre sampatte ovādaṁ dassati,
“When Nandaka’s turn arrives he should give advice,

Dhammakathaṁ kathessatī,” ti vārena ovādaṁ akāsi.
he should give a Dhamma talk,” it means he should give advice in his turn.

Thero pana attano vāraṁ na karoti, kasmā ti ce?
But if the Elder didn’t take his turn, why is that?

Tā kira bhikkhuniyo pubbe Therassa Jambudīpe rajjaṁ kārentassa orodhā ahesuṁ.
It seems that formerly those nuns had made up his harem when he had ruled over the Rose Apple Isle.

Thero pubbenivāsañāṇena taṁ kāraṇaṁ ñatvā cintesi:
The Elder, knowing this through his knowledge of previous lives, thought:

‘Maṁ imassa Bhikkhunisaṅghassa majjhe nisinnaṁ
‘Sitting in the midst of this Community of nuns

upamāyo ca kāraṇāni ca āharitvā,
and bringing forward similes and reasons,

dhammaṁ kathayamānaṁ disvā,
and being seen preaching the Dhamma,

añño pubbenivāsañāṇalābhī bhikkhu imaṁ kāraṇaṁ oloketvā,
(if) another monk who also had knowledge of previous lives looked at the reason for it,

“Āyasmā Nandako yāvajjadivasā orodhe na vissajjeti,
° he might think he could say: “Venerable Nandaka up to this day did not send off his concubines,

sobhatāyam-āyasmā orodhaparivuto,” ti vattabbaṁ maññeyyā.’ ti
this venerable is resplendent when surrounded by his concubines.”

Etam-atthaṁ sampassamāno Thero attano vāraṁ na karoti.
Understanding this matter the Elder did not take his turn.

Imāsañ-ca kira bhikkhunīnaṁ Therasseva desanā sappāyā bhavissatī ti ñatvā,
But understanding that it will be beneficial for the Elder to preach to those nuns, it seems,

atha kho Bhagavā āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ āmantesi.
the Gracious One then addressed the venerable Nandaka.

Tāsaṁ bhikkhunīnaṁ pubbe tassa orodhabhāvajānanatthaṁ idaṁ vatthuṁ:
In order to understand when these nuns were previously in his harem, there is this story:

Pubbe kira Bārāṇasiyaṁ pañca dāsasatāni pañca dāsisatāni cā ti,
Formerly, it seems, in Bāraṇasī there were five hundred male slave and five hundred female slaves,

jaṅghasahassaṁ ekato va kammaṁ katvā, ekasmiṁ ṭhāne vasi.
and as these thousand people did their work together, they dwelt in one place.

Ayaṁ Nandakatthero tasmiṁ kāle jeṭṭhakadāso hoti, Gotamī jeṭṭhakadāsī.
At that time this Elder Nandaka was the senior male slave, and Gotamī was the senior female slave.

Sā jeṭṭhakadāsassa pādaparicārikā ahosi, paṇḍitā byattā.
She was the senior male slave’s attendant, and was wise and learned.

Jaṅghasahassam-pi puññakammaṁ karontaṁ, ekato karoti.
The thousand people who were making meritorious deeds, acted together.

Atha vassūpanāyikasamaye,
Then, as the time for the Rains Retreat was approaching,

pañca Paccekabuddhā Nandamūlakapabbhārato Isipatane otaritvā,
five Independent Buddhas descended from mount Nandamūlaka to Isipatana,

nagare piṇḍāya caritvā, Isipatanam-eva gantvā,
wandered for alms in the city, and after going (back) to Isipatana,

‘Vassūpanāyikakuṭiyā atthāya hatthakammaṁ yācissāmā.’ ti
thought: ‘We will ask for manual labour in order to prepare the huts for spending the Rains.’

Cīvaraṁ pārupitvā, sāyanhasamaye nagaraṁ pavisitvā,
Having wrapped the robe, they entered the city in the evening time,

seṭṭhissa gharadvāre aṭṭhaṁsu.
and stood at the gate of the treasurer’s house.

Jeṭṭhakadāsī, kuṭaṁ gahetvā udakatitthaṁ gacchantī
The chief female slave took a waterpot and while going to the reservoir

Paccekabuddhe nagaraṁ pavisante addasa.
saw the Independent Buddhas entering the city.

Seṭṭhi, tesaṁ āgatakāraṇaṁ sutvā,
The treasurer, after hearing why they had come,

“Amhākaṁ okāso natthi, gacchantū!” ti āha.
said: “You do not have our permission, please go!”

Atha, te nagarā nikkhante,
Then, as they were leaving the city,

jeṭṭhakadāsī, kuṭaṁ gahetvā, pavisantī disvā,
the chief female slave, took her waterpot and seeing them entering,

kuṭaṁ otāretvā, vanditvā, onamitvā, mukhaṁ ukkhipitvā,
put down the waterpot, worshipped, bent down, lifted up her face,

“Ayyā, nagaraṁ paviṭṭhamattāva, nikkhantā kiṁ nu kho?” ti pucchi.
and asked: “Noble Ones, having just entered the city, why are you (now) leaving?”

“Vassūpanāyikakuṭiyā hatthakammaṁ yācituṁ āgatamhā.” ti
“We came to ask for manual labour to prepare the huts for spending the Rains.”

“Laddhaṁ Bhante?” ti
“Did you receive it, venerable Sirs?”

“Na laddhaṁ upāsike.” ti
“We did not receive it, lay woman.”

“Kiṁ panesā kuṭī issareheva kātabbā?
“But can these huts only be made by the powerful?

Duggate hi pi sakkā kātun?”-ti
Is it possible also for the lowly to build (them)?”

“Yena kenaci sakkā kātun.”-ti
“It is possible for anyone to build (them).”

“Sādhu Bhante mayaṁ karissāma,
“Very well, venerable Sirs, we will build (them),

sve mayhaṁ bhikkhaṁ gaṇhathā,” ti nimantetvā,
tomorrow please accept our almsfood,” and after inviting (them),

udakaṁ netvā, puna kuṭaṁ gahetvā, āgamanatitthamagge ṭhatvā,
she led them to the water, took the waterpot, placed it on the road going to the reservoir,

āgatāgatā avasesadāsiyo: “Ettheva hothā,” ti vatvā,
and as the other female slaves came and went, she said: “Wait here,”

sabbāsaṁ āgatakāle āha:
and when everyone had assembled, she said:

“Ammā, kiṁ niccam-eva parassa dāsakammaṁ karissatha,
“Ladies, will we always be doing slave-work for another,

udāhu dāsabhāvato muccituṁ icchathā?” ti
or do you wish to be free of this slavery?”

“Ajjeva muccituṁ icchāma, Ayye.” ti
“Noble Lady, today itself we wish to be free.”

“Yadi evaṁ mayā pañca Paccekabuddhā hatthakammaṁ alabhantā
“When these five Independent Buddhas didn’t receive manual labour

svātanāya nimantitā.
they were invited by me for tomorrow.

Tumhākaṁ sāmikehi ekadivasaṁ hatthakammaṁ dāpethā.” ti
Have your husbands give manual labour for a day.”

Tā: “Sādhū!” ti, sampaṭicchitvā,
They replied: “Very well!”

sāyaṁ aṭavito āgatakāle sāmikānaṁ ārocesuṁ.
and informed their husbands when they returned from the forest.

Te: “Sādhū!” ti, jeṭṭhakadāsassa gehadvāre sannipatiṁsu.
They (also) said: “Very well!” and assembled at the chief male slave’s door.

Atha ne jeṭṭhakadāsī:
Then the chief female slave said to them:

“Sve Tātā Paccekabuddhānaṁ hatthakammaṁ dethā,” ti
“Tomorrow, Dears, you must give manual labour to the Independent Buddhas,”

ānisaṁsaṁ ācikkhitvā, ye pi na kātukāmā,
and she explained the advantages, and even those who did not desire to do it (at first),

te gāḷhena ovādena tajjetvā paṭicchāpesi.
after she had given them strong advice, agreed.

Sā punadivase Paccekabuddhānaṁ bhattaṁ datvā,
On the next day, after giving food to the Independent Buddhas,

sabbesaṁ dāsaputtānaṁ saññaṁ adāsi.
she informed all the slaves.

Te tāvad-eva araññaṁ pavisitvā, dabbasambhāre samodhānetvā,
They entered the wilderness straight away, assembled the timber,

sataṁ sataṁ hutvā, ekekakuṭiṁ ekakcaṅkamanādiparivāraṁ katvā,
gathered in hundreds, made each of them a hut together with a walking meditation path,

mañcapīṭhapānīyaparibhojanīyādīni ṭhapetvā,
and placed suitable beds, chairs and drinks,

Paccekabuddhe temāsaṁ tattha vasanatthāya paṭiññaṁ kāretvā,
and made the Independent Buddhas promise to spend the three months The period of the Rains Retreat.06 right there,

vārabhikkhaṁ paṭṭhapesuṁ.
and prepared excellent almsfood (for them).

Yo attano vāradivase na sakkoti,
For those who were not able to take the opportunity (to give) on their day,

tassā jeṭṭhakadāsī sakagehato āharitvā deti.
the chief female slave took (food) from her own house and gave it.

Evaṁ temāsaṁ jaggitvā,
After looking after them for three months,

jeṭṭhakadāsī ekekaṁ dāsaṁ ekekaṁ sāṭakaṁ visajjāpesi,
the chief female slave had each of the male slaves prepare cloth,

pañca thūlasāṭakasatāni ahesuṁ.
and they made five-hundred coarse cloths.

Tāni parivattāpetvā, pañcannaṁ Paccekabuddhānaṁ ticīvarāni katvā adāsi.
After exchanging them, and having the three robes made, she gave (a set to each of) the five Independent Buddhas.

Paccekabuddhā yathāphāsukaṁ agamaṁsu.

The Independent Buddhas then departed according to their own convenience.

Tam-pi jaṅghasahassaṁ ekato kusalaṁ katvā,
Those thousand people having done good deeds together,

kāyassa bhedā devaloke nibbatti.
at the break up of the body were reborn in the world of the gods.

Tāni pañca mātugāmasatāni kālena kālaṁ
Those five hundred women from time to time

tesaṁ pañcannaṁ purisasatānaṁ gehe honti,
were (reborn) in the homes of the five hundred men,

kālena kālaṁ sabbā pi jeṭṭhakadāsaputtasseva gehe honti.
and from time to time all were (reborn) in the home of the chief male slave.

Atha ekasmiṁ kāle jeṭṭhakadāsaputto devalokato cavitvā Rājakule nibbatto.
Then at one time the chief male slave, having fallen from the world of the gods, was reborn in a Princely family.

Tā pi pañcasatā devakaññā, mahābhogakulesu nibbattitvā,
Those five hundred goddesses, after being reborn in very wealthy families,

tassa rajje ṭhitassa gehaṁ agamaṁsu.
ruled over his home, and then departed.

Etena niyāmena saṁsarantiyo, amhākaṁ Bhagavato kāle
Transmigrating in this way, at the time of our Gracious One

Koliyanagare Devadahanagare ca khattiyakulesu nibbattā.
they were reborn in warrior families in the towns of Koliya and Devadaha.

Nandakatthero pi pabbajitvā Arahattaṁ patto.
After going forth the Elder Nandaka attained Liberation.

Jeṭṭhakadāsidhītā vayaṁ āgamma
When the senior slave’s daughter came of age

Suddhodanamahārājassa Aggamahesiṭṭhāne ṭhitā,
she was established in the position of the Great King Suddhodana’s Chief Queen,

itarā pi tesaṁ tesaṁ Rājaputtānaṁ yeva gharaṁ gatā.
and the rest of them went to the houses of the Princes’ sons.

Tāsaṁ sāmikā pañcasatā Rājakumārā udakacumbaṭakalahe,
Their husbands, the five hundred Princes, at the end of the string of quarrels about water,

Satthu Dhammadesanaṁ sutvā pabbajitā,
having heard the Teacher’s Dhamma teaching went forth,

Rājadhītaro tesaṁ ukkaṇṭhanatthaṁ sāsanaṁ pesesuṁ.
and sent a message to those Princesses about their dissatisfaction.

Te ukkaṇṭhite Bhagavā Kuṇāladahaṁ netvā, Sotāpattiphale patiṭṭhapetvā,
The Gracious One led those who were dissatisfied to the Kuṇāla Lake, established them in the fruit of Stream-Entry,

Mahāsamayadivase Arahatte patiṭṭhāpesi.
and on the day of the Great Assembly established them in Liberation.

Tā pi pañcasatā Rājadhītaro nikkhamitvā,
The five hundred Princesses, having renounced,

Mahāpajāpatiyā santike pabbajiṁsu.
went forth in the presence of Mahāpajāpatī.

Ayam-āyasmā Nandako ettāva tā bhikkhuniyo ti:
So much for venerable Nandaka and the nuns:

Evam-etaṁ vatthu dīpetabbaṁ.
This is how the story should be seen.

Atha kho Bhagavā āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ āmantesi:
Then the Gracious One addressed the venerable Nandaka:

“Ovada, Nandaka, bhikkhuniyo, anusāsa, Nandaka, bhikkhuniyo,
“Advise the nuns, Nandaka, instruct the nuns, Nandaka,

karohi tvaṁ, brāhmaṇa, bhikkhunīnaṁ Dhammiṁ kathan.”-ti
give a Dhamma talk to the nuns, brāhmaṇa.”

“Evaṁ, Bhante,” ti kho so ChS omits so.07 āyasmā Nandako, Bhagavato paṭissutvā,
“Very well, reverend Sir,” and venerable Nandaka, having replied to the Gracious One,

pubbaṇhasamayaṁ nivāsetvā,
dressed in the morning time,

pattacīvaram-ādāya BJT, PTS: pattacīvaraṁ ādāya, and similarly elsewhere; difference in sandhi.08 Sāvatthiṁ piṇḍāya pāvisi.
and picked up his bowl and robe, entered Sāvatthī for alms.

Sāvatthiyaṁ piṇḍāya caritvā, pacchābhattaṁ piṇḍapātapaṭikkanto attadutiyo,
After walking for alms in Sāvatthī, and while returning from the alms-round with his attendant after the meal,

yena Rājakārāmo tenupasaṅkami.
he approached the King’s monastery. This was a monastery built for the nuns by King Pasenadi on the advice of the Buddha after Ven. Uppalavaṇṇa was raped while living alone in the forest.09

‘Rājakārāmo’ ti Pasenadinā kārito
‘The King’s monastery’ means the monastery that was built by (King) Pasenadi

nagarassa dakkhiṇadisābhāge Thūpārāmasadise ṭhāne vihāro.
in the southern part of the city (of Sāvatthī), in a position similar to the Thūpārāma. A famous monastery in the south of Anurādhapūra, Sri Lanka at the time of the Commentator.10

Addasaṁsu RTE, PTS: Addasāsuṁ, alternative form.11 kho tā bhikkhuniyo āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ dūrato va āgacchantaṁ.
Those nuns saw the venerable Nandaka coming while still far away,

Disvāna āsanaṁ paññāpesuṁ, udakañ-ca pādānaṁ upaṭṭhapesuṁ.
and having seen (him), they prepared a seat, and had water set up for (washing) the feet.

Nisīdi kho āyasmā Nandako paññatte āsane, nisajja pāde pakkhālesi.
Venerable Nandaka sat down on the prepared seat, and while sitting he washed his feet.

Tā pi kho bhikkhuniyo āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ abhivādetvā,
Those nuns worshipped venerable Nandaka

ekam-antaṁ nisīdiṁsu.
and sat down on one side.

Ekam-antaṁ nisinnā kho tā bhikkhuniyo āyasmā Nandako etad-avoca:
While sitting on one side venerable Nandaka said this to those nuns:

“Paṭipucchakathā kho, bhaginiyo, bhavissati,
“Sisters, this will be a talk in which I put questions,

tattha ājānantīhi: ‘Ājānāmā,’ tissa vacanīyaṁ,
herein, when you understand, you should say: ‘We understand,’

na ājānantīhi: ‘Na ājānāmā,’ tissa vacanīyaṁ.
when you don’t understand, you should say: ‘We don’t understand.’

Yassā vā panassa kaṅkhā vā vimati vā aham-eva tattha paṭipucchitabbo:
But if for you there is doubt or uncertainty herein you should ask in return:

‘Idaṁ, Bhante, kathaṁ, imassa kvattho?’ ” ti
‘This that you said, reverend Sir, what is its meaning?’ ”

“Ettakena pi mayaṁ, Bhante, ayyassa Nandakassa attamanā abhiraddhā, PTS: abhinandāma, we greatly rejoice.12
“So far, reverend Sir, we are uplifted and satisfied with the noble Nandaka,

yaṁ no ayyo Nandako pavāretī.” ti
and for the noble Nandaka making this invitation to us.”

 

The Instruction on the Internal Sense Spheres

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, cakkhuṁ RTE, ChS: cakkhu, alternative form.13 niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the eye permanent or impermanent?” The following questions and answers are similar to the second recorded Discourse the Buddha gave, on the Characteristic of Non-Self, but here the questions are applied to the sense spheres rather than the constituents of mind and body. 14

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso PTS: so, and similarly elsewhere, alternative form of the pronoun.15 me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, sotaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the ear permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, ghānaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the nose permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, jivhā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the tongue permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, kāyo nicco vā anicco vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the body permanent or impermanent?”

“Anicco, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, mano nicco vā anicco vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the mind permanent or impermanent?”

“Anicco, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu? ChS punctuates that this as though it is a new speaker here and in similar positions; but it is clear this is a rhetorical question, and there are no quotation markers to indicate otherwise.16
What is the reason for that?

Pubbe va no hetaṁ, ChS: etaṁ.17 Bhante, yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhaṁ:
Previously, reverend Sir, this was well seen by us, as it really is, with perfect wisdom:

‘Sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhan,’-ti
‘Well seen ... with perfect wisdom,’

hetunā kāraṇena vipassanāpaññāya, yāthāvasarasato diṭṭhaṁ.
seen, at the time it really exists, with cause, with reason, with the wisdom of insight.

‘Iti pi me cha ajjhattikā āyatanā aniccā.’ ” ti
‘These six internal sense spheres are impermanent.’ ”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Instruction on the External Sense Spheres

Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, rūpā niccā vā aniccā vā” ti?
What do you think of this, sisters, are forms permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, saddā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are sounds permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, gandhā PTS omits any peyyāla sign here, writing Aniccā, Bhante. Gandhā niccā... and so on throughout. 18 niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are smells permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:

is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, rasā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are tastes permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, phoṭṭhabbā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are touches permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, dhammā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are thoughts permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti PTS employs elipsis: kallan nu taṁ . . . attā ti. 19
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Pubbe va no hetaṁ, Bhante, yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhaṁ:
Previously, reverend Sir, this was well seen by us, as it really is, with perfect wisdom:

‘Iti pi me cha bāhirā āyatanā aniccā.’ ” ti
‘These six external sense spheres are impermanent.’ ”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Instruction on the Six Consciousnesses

Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, cakkhuviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
What do you think of this, sisters, is eye-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, sotaviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is ear-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, ghānaviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is nose-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, jivhāviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is tongue-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.” PTS omits the lines from jivhāviṇṇāṇaṁ to Bhante by mistake.20
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, kāyaviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is body-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, manoviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is mind-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Pubbe va no hetaṁ, Bhante, yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhaṁ:
Previously, reverend Sir, this was well seen by us, as it really is, with perfect wisdom:

‘Iti pi me cha viññāṇakāyā aniccā.’ ” ti
‘These six kinds of consciousness are impermanent.’ ”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Oil Lamp Simile

Seyyathā pi, bhaginiyo, telappadīpassa jhāyato,
Suppose, sisters, when an oil lamp is burning

telam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the oil is impermanent and changeable,

vaṭṭi PTS: vaṭṭī, and similarly elsewhere; alternative form.21 pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the wick is impermanent and changeable,

acci PTS: accī, and similarly elsewhere; alternative form.22 pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the flame is impermanent and changeable,

ābhā pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā.
the radiance is impermanent and changeable.

Yo nu kho, bhaginiyo, evaṁ vadeyya:

He who would say this, sisters:

‘Amussa telappadīpassa jhāyato, telam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
‘For this oil lamp that is burning the oil is impermanent and changeable,

vaṭṭi pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the wick is impermanent and changeable,

acci pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the flame is impermanent and changeable,

yā ca BJT omits: ca here, but includes it in similar places elsewhere.23 khvāssa RTE: khvassa, alternative form, here and elsewhere.24 ābhā sā niccā dhuvā sassatā avipariṇāmadhammā,’ ti
but the radiance is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Amussa hi, Bhante, telappadīpassa jhāyato,
For while this oil lamp is burning, reverend Sir,

telam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the oil is impermanent and changeable,

vaṭṭi pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the wick is impermanent and changeable,

acci pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the flame is impermanent and changeable,

pagevassa ābhā aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā?” ti
then what to say of its radiance being impermanent and changeable?”

“Evam-eva kho, bhaginiyo, yo nu kho evaṁ vadeyya:
“Just so he who would say this, sisters:

‘Cha kho me BJT: Cha kho hi imā, here, but Cha kho me in the repetition; ChS: Cha khome, and similarly elsewhere. 25 ajjhattikā āyatanā aniccā,
‘These six internal sense-spheres are impermanent,

yañ-ca kho cha ajjhattike āyatane paṭicca,
but that which is conditioned by these six internal sense-spheres,

paṭisaṁvedeti RTE, PTS: paṭisaṁvedemi; that I feel.26 sukhaṁ vā dukkhaṁ vā adukkhamasukhaṁ vā,
the pleasant or painful or neither painful-nor-pleasant (feeling) that he feels,

taṁ niccaṁ dhuvaṁ sassataṁ avipariṇāmadhamman,’-ti
that is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Tajjaṁ tajjaṁ, Bhante, paccayaṁ paṭicca, tajjā tajjā vedanā uppajjanti. RTE: uppajjatī, here and elsewhere; singular form.27
Whatever arises, reverend Sir, is conditioned by conditions, and with that arising feelings appear.

‘Tajjaṁ tajjan’-ti taṁsabhāvaṁ taṁsabhāvaṁ,
‘Whatever arises’ means that which arises,

atthato pana: ‘Taṁ taṁ paccayaṁ paṭicca, tā tā vedanā uppajjantī,’ ti vuttaṁ hoti.
but the meaning is: ‘That which is conditioned by conditions, with just that feelings appear,’ this is what is said.

Tajjassa tajjassa paccayassa nirodhā,
With the cessation of the conditions for whatever arises,

tajjā tajjā vedanā nirujjhantī.” RTE: nirujjhatī, here and elsewhere; singular form.28 ti
whatever feelings have arisen cease.”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Big Tree Simile

Seyyathā pi, bhaginiyo, mahato rukkhassa tiṭṭhato sāravato,
Suppose, sisters, when there is a big tree standing, having heartwood,

mūlam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the root is impermanent and changeable,

khandho pi anicco vipariṇāmadhammo,
the trunk is impermanent and changeable,

sākhāpalāsam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the branches and foilage are impermanent and changeable,

chāyā pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā.
the shadow is impermanent and changeable.

Yo nu kho, bhaginiyo, evaṁ vadeyya:
He who would say this, sisters:

‘Amussa mahato rukkhassa tiṭṭhato sāravato,
‘For this big tree which is stood here, having heartwood,

mūlam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the root is impermanent and changeable,

khandho pi anicco vipariṇāmadhammo,
the trunk is impermanent and changeable,

sākhāpalāsam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the branches and foilage are impermanent and changeable,

yā ca khvāssa chāyā sā niccā dhuvā sassatā avipariṇāmadhammā,’ ti
but the shadow is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Amussa hi, Bhante, mahato rukkhassa tiṭṭhato sāravato,
For this big tree which is stood here, reverend Sir, having heartwood,

mūlam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the root is impermanent and changeable,

khandho pi anicco vipariṇāmadhammo,
the trunk is impermanent and changeable,

sākhāpalāsam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the branches and foilage are impermanent and changeable,

pagevassa chāyā aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā?” ti
then what to say of its shadow being impermanent and changeable?”

‘Pagevassa chāyā,’ ti mūlādīni nissāya nibbattā chāyā paṭhamataraṁ yeva aniccā.
‘Then what to say of its shadow,’ of those things that exist because of the root and so on, the shadow is the most impermanent.

“Evam-eva kho, bhaginiyo, yo nu kho evaṁ vadeyya:
“Just so he who would say this, sisters:

‘Cha kho me bāhirā āyatanā aniccā, BJT, PTS add here: vipariṇāmadhammā, but not in a similar places above.29
‘These six external sense-spheres are impermanent,

yañ-ca kho cha RTE omits: cha, here and below.30 bāhire āyatane paṭicca
but that which is conditioned by these six external sense-spheres

paṭisaṁvedeti sukhaṁ vā dukkhaṁ vā adukkhamasukhaṁ vā,
the pleasant or painful or neither painful-nor-pleasant (feeling) that he feels,

taṁ niccaṁ dhuvaṁ sassataṁ avipariṇāmadhamman,’-ti
that is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Tajjaṁ tajjaṁ, Bhante, paccayaṁ paṭicca,
Whatever arises, reverend Sir, is conditioned by conditions,

tajjā tajjā vedanā uppajjanti.
and with that arising feelings appear.

Tajjassa tajjassa paccayassa nirodhā,
With the cessation of the conditions for whatever arises,

tajjā tajjā vedanā nirujjhantī.” ti
whatever feelings have arisen cease.”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom,

 

The Cow Simile

Seyyathā pi, bhaginiyo,
Suppose, sisters,

dakkho goghātako vā goghātakantevāsī vā, gāviṁ vadhitvā,
a butcher or a butcher’s apprentice, after killing a cow,

tiṇhena govikantanena gāviṁ vikanteyya, ChS: saṅkanteyya, and below; different word, but same meaning.31
were to cut through the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

anupahacca antaraṁ maṁsakāyaṁ, anupahacca bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
without harming the flesh on the inside, and without harming the hide on the outside,

‘Anupahaccā’ ti anupahanitvā.
‘Without harming’ means without harming (different word form).

Tattha, maṁsaṁ piṇḍaṁ piṇḍaṁ katvā
Herein, by making balls of meat

cammaṁ allīyāpento maṁsakāyaṁ upahanati nāma;
the hide sticking to the flesh is damaged;

cammaṁ baddhaṁ baddhaṁ katvā,
by kneading the hide,

maṁse alliyāpento maṁsakāyaṁ upahanati nāma.
the flesh sticking to the hide is damaged.

Evaṁ akatvā.
Without doing this.

yaṁ yad-eva tattha, antarā vilimaṁsaṁ, PTS: cilīmaṁ; BJT: vilīmaṁsaṁ, both readings similarly elsewhere; the words are uncommon and the reading seems very uncertain.32 antarā nahāru, ChS: nhāru, and similarly elsewhere; alternative form.33 antarā bandhanaṁ,
(but) whatever was right there, the flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew on the inside, the teguments on the inside,

‘Vilimaṁsaṁ nhārubandhanan,’-ti sabbacamme laggavilimpanamaṁsam-eva.
‘Flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew, the teguments,’ means the flesh stuck and smeared on the hide.

taṁ tad-eva tiṇhena govikantanena sañchindeyya,
(all) that he were to cut away from the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

saṅkanteyya ChS adds: sampakanteyya, and similar forms elsewhere.34 samparikanteyya,
were to cut it through, were to cut it out,

sañchinditvā saṅkantitvā ChS adds: sampakantitvā, and similar forms elsewhere.35 samparikantitvā,
and after having cut it away, cut it through, cut it out,

vidhunitvā bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
and removed the hide on the outside,

teneva cammena taṁ gāviṁ paṭicchādetvā RTE adds here: kiñcāpi so; by mistake?36 evaṁ vadeyya:
and with the hide having covered that cow (again), were he to say thus:

‘Tathevāyaṁ gāvī saṁyuttā iminā va RTE, PTS omit: va.37 cammenā,’ ti
‘This cow is connected with its hide (again),’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Amu hi, Bhante, dakkho goghātako vā goghātakantevāsī vā, gāviṁ vadhitvā,
For, reverend Sir, (if) a butcher or a butcher’s apprentice, after killing a cow,

tiṇhena govikantanena gāviṁ vikanteyya,
were to cut through the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

anupahacca antaraṁ maṁsakāyaṁ, anupahacca bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
without harming the flesh on the inside, and without harming the hide on the outside,

yaṁ yad-eva tattha, antarā vilimaṁsaṁ, antarā nahāru, antarā bandhanaṁ,
and whatever was right there, the flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew on the inside, the teguments on the inside,

taṁ tad-eva tiṇhena govikantanena RTE adds: gāviṁ here, but not in similar positions elsewhere.38 sañchindeyya,
(all) that he were to cut away from the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

saṅkanteyya samparikanteyya,
were to cut it through, were to cut it out,

sañchinditvā saṅkantitvā samparikantitvā,
and after having cut it away, cut it through, cut it out,

vidhunitvā bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
and removed the hide on the outside,

teneva cammena taṁ gāviṁ paṭicchādetvā, kiñcāpi so evaṁ vadeyya:
and with the hide having covered that cow (again), were he to say thus:

‘Tathevāyaṁ gāvī saṁyuttā iminā va cammenā,’ ti
‘This cow is connected with its hide (again),’

atha kho sā gāvī visaṁyuttā teneva cammenā.” ti
still that cow would not be connected with its hide (again).”

 

The Key to the Cow Simile

“Upamā kho me ayaṁ, bhaginiyo, katā atthassa viññāpanāya,
“This is a simile I have made, sisters, to instruct in the meaning,

ayam-evettha attho:
and this is the meaning here:

‘Antaro BJT, ChS: Antarā; which is not in agreement.39 maṁsakāyo,’ ti kho, bhaginiyo,
‘Flesh on the inside,’ sisters,

channetaṁ ajjhattikānaṁ āyatanānaṁ adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for these six internal sense spheres,

‘Bāhiro cammakāyo,’ ti kho bhaginiyo,
‘Hide on the outside,’ sisters,

channetaṁ bāhirānaṁ āyatanānaṁ adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for these six external sense spheres,

‘Antarā vilimaṁsaṁ, antarā nahāru, antarā bandhanan,’-ti kho, bhaginiyo,
‘The flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew on the inside, the teguments on the inside,’ sisters,

nandirāgassetaṁ ChS: nandīrāgassetaṁ, and similarly elsewhere.40 adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for enjoyment and passion,

‘Tiṇhaṁ govikantanan,’-ti kho, bhaginiyo,
‘A sharp butcher’s knife,’ sisters,

ariyāyetaṁ paññāya adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for noble wisdom,

yāyaṁ ariyā paññā antarā kilesaṁ,
° the noble wisdom that cuts away the internal defilements,

antarā saṁyojanaṁ, antarā bandhanaṁ sañchindati,
the internal fetters, the internal bonds,

‘Antarākilesasaṁyojanabandhanan,’-ti sabbaṁ antarakilesam-eva sandhāya vuttaṁ.
‘The internal defilements, fetters and bonds,’ this was said in regard to all the internal defilements.

saṅkantati samparikantati.
cuts them through, cuts them out.

 

The Factors of Awakening

Satta kho ime, BJT: ime, but panime in the repetition.41 bhaginiyo, Bojjhaṅgā,
There are these seven Factors of Awakening, sisters, Up till this point the nuns always say that they have previously understood the teachings, but not after this teaching, so it appears that this section about the seven Factors of Awakening is new to them, and it is through understanding this that they eventually (during the repetition) make the breakthrough. 42

‘Satta kho ime,’ ti kasmā āhā ti?
‘There are these seven,’ why was this said?

‘Yā hi esā paññā kilese chindatī,’ ti vuttā,
‘For this wisdom cuts the defilements,’ is said,

sā na ekikā va attano dhammatāya chindituṁ sakkoti.
(but) as a general rule it is not able to cut (them) by itself.

Yathā pana kuṭhārī na attano dhammatāya chejjaṁ chindati,
Just as an axe as a general rule cannot cut what can be cut by itself,

purisassa tajjaṁ vāyāmaṁ paṭicceva chindati,
but on account of a man’s endeavour it cuts,

evaṁ na vinā chahi Bojjhaṅgehi paññā kilese chindituṁ sakkoti.
so without the other six Factors of Awakening wisdom Wisdom here means dhammavicaya, investigation (of the nature) of things.43 is not able to cut the defilements.

Tasmā evam-āha.
Therefore this was said.

yesaṁ bhāvitattā bahulīkatattā,
which when developed and made much of,

bhikkhu āsavānaṁ khayā, anāsavaṁ, cetovimuttiṁ paññāvimuttiṁ,
a monastic, through the destruction of the pollutants, without pollutants, freed in mind, freed through wisdom,

diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchikatvā upasampajja viharati.
dwells having known, having directly experienced, and having attained (Nibbāna) himself in this very life.

Katame satta?
Which seven?

Idha, bhaginiyo, bhikkhu Satisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
Here, sisters, a monastic develops the Mindfulness Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Dhammavicayasambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti, PTS alone doesn’t indicate elipsis here.45
develops the Investigation (of the Nature) of Things Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Viriyasambojjhaṅgaṁ ChS: Vīriya-; a form commonly found in the Burmese texts.46 bhāveti,
develops the Energy Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Pītisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Joy Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Passaddhisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Tranquility Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Samādhisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Concentration Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Upekkhāsambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Equanimity Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Ime kho, bhaginiyo, satta Bojjhaṅgā,
There are these seven Factors of Awakening, sisters,

yesaṁ bhāvitattā bahulīkatattā,
which when developed and made much of,

bhikkhu āsavānaṁ khayā, anāsavaṁ, cetovimuttiṁ paññāvimuttiṁ,
a monastic, through the destruction of the pollutants, without pollutants, freed in mind, freed through wisdom,

diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchikatvā upasampajja viharatī.” ti
dwells having known, having directly experienced, and having attained (Nibbāna) himself in this very life.”

Atha kho āyasmā Nandako tā bhikkhuniyo iminā ovādena ovaditvā uyyojesi:
Then venerable Nandaka, having advised the nuns with this advice, sent them off,

“Gacchatha, bhaginiyo, kālo.” ti
saying: “Depart, sisters, it is time.”

 

The Gracious One’s Response

Atha kho tā bhikkhuniyo,
Then those nuns,

āyasmato Nandakassa bhāsitaṁ abhinanditvā anumoditvā,
after rejoicing in and being gladdened by venerable Nandaka’s speech,

uṭṭhāyāsanā āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ abhivādetvā padakkhiṇaṁ katvā,
rising from their seats, worshipping and circumambulating venerable Nandaka,

yena Bhagavā tenupasaṅkamiṁsu,
approached the Gracious One,

upasaṅkamitvā Bhagavantaṁ abhivādetvā ekam-antaṁ aṭṭhaṁsu.
and after approaching and worshipping the Gracious One, they stood on one side.

Ekam-antaṁ ṭhitā kho tā bhikkhuniyo Bhagavā etad-avoca:
While they were standing on one side the Gracious One said this to the nuns:

“Gacchatha, bhikkhuniyo, kālo.” ti
“Depart, sisters, it is time.”

Atha kho tā bhikkhuniyo Bhagavantaṁ abhivādetvā
Then those nuns, after worshipping

padakkhiṇaṁ katvā, pakkamiṁsu.
and circumambulating the Gracious One, departed.

Atha kho Bhagavā acirapakkantīsu RTE, PTS: acirapakkantāsu, alternative form.47 tāsu bhikkhunīsu bhikkhū āmantesi:
Then, not long after those nuns had departed, the Gracious One addressed the monks:

“Seyyathā pi, bhikkhave, tad-ahuposathe cātuddase
saying: “Just as, monks, on the Uposatha day of the fourteenth

na hoti bahuno janassa kaṅkhā vā vimati vā:
for most people there is no doubt or uncertainty:

‘Ūno nu kho cando, puṇṇo nu kho cando?’ ti
‘Is the moon deficient, or is the moon full?’

atha kho ūno cando tveva hoti;
for then the moon is deficient;

evam-eva kho, bhikkhave, tā bhikkhuniyo RTE omits: bhikkhuniyo.48
just so, monks, those nuns

Nandakassa Dhammadesanāya attamanā ceva ChS omits: ceva.49 honti,
were uplifted by the venerable Nandaka’s Dhamma preaching,

no ca kho paripuṇṇasaṅkappā.” ti
but their aspirations were not fulfilled.”

Atha kho Bhagavā āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ āmantesi:
Then the Gracious One addressed the venerable Nandaka,

“Tena hi tvaṁ, Nandaka, sve pi tā bhikkhuniyo tenevovādena ovadeyyāsī.” ti
saying: “Nandaka, tomorrow also you should advise the nuns with just this advice.”

‘Tena hī,’ ti yena kāraṇena tayā cha ajjhattikāni āyatanāni,
‘With ... this,’ with this reasoning on the six internal sense spheres,

cha bāhirāni, cha viññāṇakāye,
the six external (sense spheres), the six kinds of consciousness,

dīpopamaṁ, rukkhopamaṁ, gāvūpamañ-ca dassetvā,
instructing with the simile of the light, the simile of the tree, and the simile of the cow,

sattahi Bojjhaṅgehi āsavakkhayena desanā niṭṭhapitā,
and concluding the teaching with the destruction of the pollutants through the seven Factors of Awakening,

tena kāraṇena tvaṁ sve pi tā bhikkhuniyo teneva ovādena ovadeyyāsī. ti
with this reasoning you should advise the nuns tomorrow with this advice.

“Evaṁ, Bhante,” ti kho āyasmā Nandako Bhagavato paccassosi.
“Very well, reverend Sir,” venerable Nandaka replied to the Gracious One.

 

The Following Day

Atha kho āyasmā Nandako tassā rattiyā accayena pubbaṇhasamayaṁ nivāsetvā,
Then when the night had passed, venerable Nandaka, having dressed in the morning time,

pattacīvaram-ādāya Sāvatthiṁ piṇḍāya pāvisi.
after picking up his bowl and robe, entered Sāvatthī for alms.

Sāvatthiyaṁ piṇḍāya RTE omits pāvisi. Sāvatthiyaṁ piṇḍāya.50 caritvā, pacchābhattaṁ piṇḍapātapaṭikkanto attadutiyo,
After walking for alms in Sāvatthī, and while returning from the alms-round with his attendant after the meal,

yena Rājakārāmo tenupasaṅkami.
he approached the King’s monastery.

Addasaṁsu All variations noted above need to be applied in the repetition also. Exceptions only are noted.51 kho tā bhikkhuniyo
The nuns saw

āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ dūrato va āgacchantaṁ.
the venerable Nandaka coming while still far away,

Disvāna āsanaṁ paññāpesuṁ, udakañ-ca pādānaṁ upaṭṭhapesuṁ.
and having seen (him), they prepared a seat, and had water set up for (washing) the feet.

Nisīdi kho āyasmā Nandako paññatte āsane, nisajja pāde pakkhālesi.
Venerable Nandaka sat down on the prepared seat, and while sitting he washed his feet.

Tā pi kho bhikkhuniyo āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ abhivādetvā,
Those nuns worshipped venerable Nandaka

ekam-antaṁ nisīdiṁsu.
and sat down on one side.

Ekam-antaṁ nisinnā kho tā bhikkhuniyo āyasmā Nandako etad-avoca:
While sitting on one side venerable Nandaka said this to those nuns:

“Paṭipucchakathā kho, bhaginiyo, bhavissati,
“Sisters, this will be a talk in which I put questions,

tattha ājānantīhi: ‘Ājānāmā,’ tissa vacanīyaṁ,
herein, when you understand, you should say: ‘We understand,’

na ājānantīhi: ‘Na ājānāmā,’ tissa vacanīyaṁ.
when you don’t understand, you should say: ‘We don’t understand.’

Yassā vā panassa kaṅkhā vā vimati vā aham-eva tattha paṭipucchitabbo:
But if for you there is doubt or uncertainty herein you should ask in return:

‘Idaṁ, Bhante, kathaṁ, imassa kvattho?’ ” ti
‘This that you said, reverend Sir, what is its meaning?’ ”

“Ettakena pi mayaṁ, Bhante, ayyassa Nandakassa attamanā abhiraddhā,
“So far, reverend Sir, we are uplifted and satisfied with the noble Nandaka,

yaṁ no ayyo Nandako pavāretī.” ti
and for the noble Nandaka making this invitation to us.”

 

The Instruction on the Internal Sense Spheres

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, cakkhuṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the eye permanent or impermanent?” It is rather odd that he repeats this same instruction when the nuns already told him they had understood all this previously.52

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ At this point PTS gives instructions as to how to fill in the lacuna, and continues: Gacchattha, bhikkhuniyo; kālo ti. Other versions print the repetition in full.53 dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, sotaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the ear permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, ghānaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the nose permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, jivhā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the tongue permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, kāyo nicco vā anicco vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the body permanent or impermanent?”

“Anicco, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, mano nicco vā anicco vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is the mind permanent or impermanent?”

“Anicco, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Pubbe va no hetaṁ, Bhante, yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhaṁ:
Previously, reverend Sir, this was well seen by us, as it really is, with perfect wisdom:

‘Iti pi me cha ajjhattikā āyatanā aniccā.’ ” ti
‘These six internal sense spheres are impermanent.’ ”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Instruction on the External Sense Spheres

Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, rūpā niccā vā aniccā vā” ti?
What do you think of this, sisters, are forms permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, saddā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are sounds permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, gandhā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are smells permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, rasā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are tastes permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, phoṭṭhabbā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are touches permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, dhammā niccā vā aniccā vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, are thoughts permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccā, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Pubbe va no hetaṁ, Bhante, yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhaṁ:
Previously, reverend Sir, this was well seen by us, as it really is, with perfect wisdom:

‘Iti pi me cha bāhirā āyatanā aniccā.’ ” ti
‘These six external sense spheres are impermanent.’ ”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Instruction on the Six Consciousnesses

Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, cakkhuviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
What do you think of this, sisters, is eye-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.” RTE mistakenly adds the whole end sequence here, before it has even run through the variant consciousnesses. It includes it at the end also, in its proper place.54
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, sotaviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is ear-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, ghānaviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is nose-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

...pe...
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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, jivhāviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is tongue-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

...pe...
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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, kāyaviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is body-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.”
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.”

 

...pe...
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“Taṁ kiṁ maññatha, bhaginiyo, manoviññāṇaṁ niccaṁ vā aniccaṁ vā?” ti
“What do you think of this, sisters, is mind-consciousness permanent or impermanent?”

“Aniccaṁ, Bhante.”
“Impermanent, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vā taṁ sukhaṁ vā?” ti
“But that which is impermanent, is that unpleasant or pleasant?”

“Dukkhaṁ, Bhante.”
“Unpleasant, reverend Sir.”

“Yaṁ panāniccaṁ dukkhaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
“But that which is unpleasant and changeable,

kallaṁ nu taṁ samanupassituṁ:
is it proper to regard it thus:

‘Etaṁ mama, esoham-asmi, eso me Attā?’ ” ti
‘This is mine, this I am, this is my Self?’ ”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Pubbe va no hetaṁ, Bhante, yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya sudiṭṭhaṁ:
Previously, reverend Sir, this was well seen by us, as it really is, with perfect wisdom:

‘Iti pi me cha viññāṇakāyā aniccā.’ ” ti
‘These six kinds of consciousness are impermanent.’ ”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Oil Lamp Simile

Seyyathā pi, bhaginiyo, telappadīpassa jhāyato,
Suppose, sisters, when an oil lamp is burning

telam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the oil is impermanent and changeable,

vaṭṭi pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the wick is impermanent and changeable,

acci pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the flame is impermanent and changeable,

ābhā pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā.
the radiance is impermanent and changeable.

Yo nu kho, bhaginiyo, evaṁ vadeyya:
He who would say this, sisters:

‘Amussa telappadīpassa jhāyato, telam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
‘For this oil lamp that is burning the oil is impermanent and changeable,

vaṭṭi pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the wick is impermanent and changeable,

acci pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the flame is impermanent and changeable,

yā ca BJT omits: ca here, but includes it in similar places elsewhere.55 khvāssa ābhā sā niccā dhuvā sassatā avipariṇāmadhammā,’ ti
but the radiance is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Amussa hi, Bhante, telappadīpassa jhāyato,
For while this oil lamp is burning, reverend Sir,

telam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the oil is impermanent and changeable,

vaṭṭi pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the wick is impermanent and changeable,

acci pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā,
the flame is impermanent and changeable,

pagevassa ābhā aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā?” ti
then what to say of its radiance being impermanent and changeable?”

“Evam-eva kho, bhaginiyo, yo nu kho evaṁ vadeyya:
“Just so he who would say this, sisters:

‘Cha kho me ajjhattikā āyatanā aniccā,
‘These six internal sense-spheres are impermanent,

yañ-ca kho cha ajjhattike āyatane paṭicca,
but that which is conditioned by these six internal sense-spheres,

paṭisaṁvedeti sukhaṁ vā dukkhaṁ vā adukkhamasukhaṁ vā,
the pleasant or painful or neither painful-nor-pleasant (feeling) that he feels,

taṁ niccaṁ dhuvaṁ sassataṁ avipariṇāmadhamman,’-ti
that is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Tajjaṁ tajjaṁ, Bhante, paccayaṁ paṭicca,
Whatever arises, reverend Sir, is conditioned by conditions,

tajjā tajjā vedanā uppajjanti.
and with that arising feelings appear.

Tajjassa tajjassa paccayassa nirodhā,
With the cessation of the conditions for whatever arises,

tajjā tajjā vedanā nirujjhantī.” ti
whatever feelings have arisen cease.”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo,
This is the way, sisters,

hoti ariyasāvakassa yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
for a noble disciple who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Big Tree Simile

Seyyathā pi, bhaginiyo, mahato rukkhassa tiṭṭhato sāravato,
Suppose, sisters, when there is a big tree standing, having heartwood,

mūlam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the root is impermanent and changeable,

khandho pi anicco vipariṇāmadhammo,
the trunk is impermanent and changeable,

sākhāpalāsam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the branches and foilage are impermanent and changeable,

chāyā pi aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā.
the shadow is impermanent and changeable.

Yo nu kho, bhaginiyo, evaṁ vadeyya:
He who would say this, sisters:

‘Amussa mahato rukkhassa tiṭṭhato sāravato,
‘For this big tree which is stood here, having heartwood,

mūlam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the root is impermanent and changeable,

khandho pi anicco vipariṇāmadhammo,
the trunk is impermanent and changeable,

sākhāpalāsam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the branches and foilage are impermanent and changeable,

yā ca khvāssa chāyā sā niccā dhuvā sassatā avipariṇāmadhammā,’ ti
but the shadow is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Amussa hi, Bhante, mahato rukkhassa tiṭṭhato sāravato,
For this big tree which is stood here, reverend Sir, having heartwood,

mūlam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the root is impermanent and changeable,

khandho pi anicco vipariṇāmadhammo,
the trunk is impermanent and changeable,

sākhāpalāsam-pi aniccaṁ vipariṇāmadhammaṁ,
the branches and foilage are impermanent and changeable,

pagevassa chāyā aniccā vipariṇāmadhammā?” ti
then what to say of its shadow being impermanent and changeable?”

“Evam-eva kho, bhaginiyo, yo nu kho evaṁ vadeyya:
“Just so he who would say this, sisters:

‘Cha kho me bāhirā āyatanā aniccā,
‘These six external sense-spheres are impermanent,

yañ-ca kho cha bāhire āyatane paṭicca
but that which is conditioned by these six external sense-spheres

paṭisaṁvedeti sukhaṁ vā dukkhaṁ vā adukkhamasukhaṁ vā,
the pleasant or painful or neither painful-nor-pleasant (feeling) that he feels,

taṁ niccaṁ dhuvaṁ sassataṁ avipariṇāmadhamman,’-ti
that is permanent, constant, eternal and unchangeable,’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Tajjaṁ tajjaṁ, Bhante, paccayaṁ paṭicca,
Whatever arises, reverend Sir, is conditioned by conditions,

tajjā tajjā vedanā uppajjanti.
and with that arising feelings appear.

Tajjassa tajjassa paccayassa RTE: paccassa, here, by mistake.56 nirodhā,
With the cessation of the conditions for whatever arises,

tajjā tajjā vedanā nirujjhantī.” ti
whatever feelings have arisen cease.”

“Sādhu, sādhu, bhaginiyo!
“Very good, very good, sisters!

Evaṁ hetaṁ, bhaginiyo, hoti ariyasāvakassa
This is the way, sisters, for a noble disciple

yathābhūtaṁ sammappaññāya passato.
who sees it as it really is, with perfect wisdom.

 

The Cow Simile

Seyyathā pi, bhaginiyo,
Suppose, sisters,

dakkho goghātako vā goghātakantevāsī vā, gāviṁ vadhitvā,
a butcher or a butcher’s apprentice, after killing a cow,

tiṇhena govikantanena gāviṁ vikanteyya,
were to cut through the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

anupahacca RTE spells anūpahacca, here, but anupahacca in the first section above.57 antaraṁ maṁsakāyaṁ, anupahacca bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
without harming the flesh on the inside, and without harming the hide on the outside,

yaṁ yad-eva tattha, antarā vilimaṁsaṁ, antarā nahāru, antarā bandhanaṁ,
(but) whatever was right there, the flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew on the inside, the teguments on the inside,

taṁ tad-eva tiṇhena govikantanena sañchindeyya,
(all) that he were to cut away from the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

saṅkanteyya samparikanteyya,
were to cut it through, were to cut it out,

sañchinditvā saṅkantitvā samparikantitvā,
and after having cut it away, cut it through, cut it out,

vidhunitvā bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
and removed the hide on the outside,

teneva cammena taṁ gāviṁ paṭicchādetvā evaṁ vadeyya:
and with the hide having covered that cow (again), were he to say thus:

‘Tathevāyaṁ gāvī saṁyuttā iminā va BJT omits va in the repetition. 58 cammenā,’ ti
‘This cow is connected with its hide (again),’

sammā nu kho so, bhaginiyo, vadamāno vadeyyā?” ti
would someone speaking in this way, sisters, be speaking correctly?”

“No hetaṁ, Bhante.
“Certainly not, reverend Sir.

Taṁ kissa hetu?
What is the reason for that?

Amu hi, Bhante, dakkho goghātako vā goghātakantevāsī vā, gāviṁ vadhitvā,
For, reverend Sir, (if) a butcher or a butcher’s apprentice, after killing a cow,

tiṇhena govikantanena gāviṁ vikanteyya,
were to cut through the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

anupahacca antaraṁ maṁsakāyaṁ, anupahacca bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
without harming the flesh on the inside, and without harming the hide on the outside,

yaṁ yad-eva tattha, antarā vilimaṁsaṁ, antarā nahāru, antarā bandhanaṁ,
and whatever was right there, the flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew on the inside, the teguments on the inside,

taṁ tad-eva tiṇhena govikantanena sañchindeyya,
(all) that he were to cut away from the cow with a sharp butcher’s knife,

saṅkanteyya samparikanteyya,
were to cut it through, were to cut it out,

sañchinditvā saṅkantitvā samparikantitvā,
and after having cut it away, cut it through, cut it out,

vidhunitvā bāhiraṁ cammakāyaṁ,
and removed the hide on the outside,

teneva cammena taṁ gāviṁ paṭicchādetvā, kiñcāpi so evaṁ vadeyya:
and with the hide having covered that cow (again), were he to say thus:

‘Tathevāyaṁ gāvī saṁyuttā iminā va cammenā,’ ti
‘This cow is connected with its hide (again),’

atha kho sā gāvī visaṁyuttā teneva cammenā.” ti
still that cow would not be connected with its hide (again).”

 

The Key to the Cow Simile

“Upamā kho me ayaṁ, bhaginiyo, katā atthassa viññāpanāya,
“This is a simile I have made, sisters, to instruct in the meaning,

ayam-evettha attho:
and this is the meaning here:

‘Antarā maṁsakāyo,’ ti kho, bhaginiyo,
‘Flesh on the inside,’ sisters,

channetaṁ ajjhattikānaṁ āyatanānaṁ adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for these six internal sense spheres,

‘Bāhiro cammakāyo,’ ti kho bhaginiyo,
‘Hide on the outside,’ sisters,

channetaṁ bāhirānaṁ āyatanānaṁ adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for these six external sense spheres,

‘Antarā vilimaṁsaṁ, antarā nahāru, antarā bandhanan,’-ti kho, bhaginiyo,
‘The flesh stuck to the inside, the sinew on the inside, the teguments on the inside,’ sisters,

nandirāgassetaṁ adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for enjoyment and passion,

‘Tiṇhaṁ govikantanan,’-ti kho, bhaginiyo,
‘A sharp butcher’s knife,’ sisters,

ariyāyetaṁ paññāya adhivacanaṁ,
that is a designation for noble wisdom,

yāyaṁ ariyā paññā antarā kilesaṁ,
o the noble wisdom that cuts away the internal defilements,

antarā saṁyojanaṁ, antarā bandhanaṁ sañchindati,
the internal fetters, the internal bonds,

saṅkantati samparikantati.
cuts them through, cuts them out.

 

The Factors of Awakening

Satta kho panime, RTE here: Satta kho ime, but panime elsewhere.59 bhaginiyo, Bojjhaṅgā,
There are these seven Factors of Awakening, sisters,

yesaṁ bhāvitattā bahulīkatattā,
which when developed and made much of,

bhikkhu āsavānaṁ khayā, anāsavaṁ, cetovimuttiṁ paññāvimuttiṁ,
a monastic, through the destruction of the pollutants, without pollutants, freed in mind, freed through wisdom,

diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchikatvā upasampajja viharati.
dwells having known, having directly experienced, and having attained (Nibbāna) himself in this very life.

Katame satta?
Which seven?

Idha, bhaginiyo, bhikkhu Satisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
Here, sisters, a monastic develops the Mindfulness Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Dhammavicayasambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Investigation (of the Nature) of Things Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Viriyasambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Energy Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Pītisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Joy Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Passaddhisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Tranquility Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Samādhisambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Concentration Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Upekkhāsambojjhaṅgaṁ bhāveti,
develops the Equanimity Factor of Complete Awakening,

vivekanissitaṁ virāganissitaṁ nirodhanissitaṁ vossaggapariṇāmiṁ,
depending on solitude, depending on dispassion, depending on cessation, maturing in relinquishment,

Ime kho, bhaginiyo, satta Bojjhaṅgā,
There are these seven Factors of Awakening, sisters,

yesaṁ bhāvitattā bahulīkatattā,
which when developed and made much of,

bhikkhu āsavānaṁ khayā, anāsavaṁ, cetovimuttiṁ paññāvimuttiṁ,
a monastic, through the destruction of the pollutants, without pollutants, freed in mind, freed through wisdom,

diṭṭheva dhamme sayaṁ abhiññā sacchikatvā upasampajja viharatī.” ti
dwells having known, having directly experienced, and having attained (Nibbāna) himself in this very life.”

Atha kho āyasmā Nandako tā bhikkhuniyo iminā ovādena ovaditvā uyyojesi:
Then venerable Nandaka, having advised the nuns with this advice, sent them off,

“Gacchatha, bhaginiyo, kālo.” ti
saying: “Depart, sisters, it is time.”

 

The Gracious One’s Response

Atha kho tā bhikkhuniyo
Then those nuns

āyasmato Nandakassa bhāsitaṁ abhinanditvā anumoditvā,
after rejoicing in and being gladdened by venerable Nandaka’s speech,

uṭṭhāyāsanā āyasmantaṁ Nandakaṁ abhivādetvā padakkhiṇaṁ katvā,
rising from their seats, worshipping and circumambulating venerable Nandaka,

yena Bhagavā tenupasaṅkamiṁsu,
approached the Gracious One,

upasaṅkamitvā Bhagavantaṁ abhivādetvā ekam-antaṁ aṭṭhaṁsu.
and after approaching and worshipping the Gracious One, they stood on one side.

Ekam-antaṁ ṭhitā kho tā bhikkhuniyo Bhagavā etad-avoca:
While they were standing on one side the Gracious One said this to the nuns:

“Gacchatha, bhikkhuniyo, kālo.” ti
“Depart, sisters, it is time.”

Atha kho tā bhikkhuniyo Bhagavantaṁ abhivādetvā
Then those nuns, after worshipping

padakkhiṇaṁ katvā, pakkamiṁsu.
and circumambulating the Gracious One, departed.

Atha kho Bhagavā acirapakkantīsu tāsu bhikkhunīsu bhikkhū āmantesi:
Then, not long after those nuns had departed, the Gracious One addressed the monks:

“Seyyathā pi, bhikkhave, tad-ahuposathe pannarase
saying: “Just as, monks, on the Uposatha day of the fifteenth

na hoti bahuno janassa kaṅkhā vā vimati vā:
for most people there is no doubt or uncertainty:

‘Ūno nu kho cando, puṇṇo nu kho cando?’ ti
‘Is the moon deficient, or is the moon full?’

atha kho puṇṇo cando tveva hoti;
for then the moon is full;

evam-eva kho, bhikkhave, tā bhikkhuniyo
just so, monks, those nuns

Nandakassa Dhammadesanāya attamanā,
were uplifted by the venerable Nandaka’s Dhamma preaching,

ceva paripuṇṇasaṅkappā ca.
and their aspirations were fulfilled.

Tāsaṁ, bhikkhave, pañcannaṁ bhikkhunīsatānaṁ
For those five hundred nuns, monks,

yā pacchimā RTE, ChS: pacchimikā; alternative form.60 bhikkhunī sā Sotāpannā,
the least nun is a Stream-Enterer,

‘Sā Sotāpannā,’ ti yā sā guṇehi sabbapacchimikā, sā Sotāpannā.
‘A Stream-Enterer,’ the quality of the very least of all is a Stream-Enterer.

Sesā pana Sakadāgāmi-Anāgāminiyo ca Khīṇāsavā ca.
The rest are Once-Returners, Non-Returners and those who Destroyed the Pollutants.

Yadi evaṁ kathaṁ paripuṇṇasaṅkappā? ti
How are their aspirations said to be fulfilled?

Ajjhāsayapāripūriyā.
Through the fulfilment of their intentions.

Yassā hi bhikkhuniyā evam-ahosi:
To the nun that this (thought) occurred:

‘Kadā nu kho ahaṁ ayyassa Nandakassa Dhammadesanaṁ suṇantī
‘When I am listening to the noble Nandaka’s teaching of Dhamma

tasmiṁ yeva āsane Sotāpattiphalaṁ sacchikareyyan,’-ti sā Sotāpattiphalaṁ sacchākāsi.
on that very seat I can realise Stream-Entry,’ she did realise Stream-Entry.

Yassā ahosi: “Sakadāgāmiphalaṁ Anāgāmiphalaṁ Arahattan,”-ti
To her whom this (thought) occurred: ‘The fruit of Once-Returner, the fruit of Non-Returner and the fruit of the Destruction of the Pollutants,’

sā Arahattaṁ sacchākāsi.
she realised Liberation.

Tenāha Bhagavā: “Attamanā ceva paripuṇṇasaṅkappā cā.” ti
Therefore the Gracious One said: “(They) were uplifted and their aspirations were fulfilled.”

avinipātadhammā niyatā sambodhiparāyanā.” BJT: -parāyaṇā; alternative form.61 ti
no longer subject to falling away, sure and destined for Full Awakening.”

Idam-avoca Bhagavā,
The Gracious One said this,

attamanā te bhikkhū Bhagavato bhāsitaṁ abhinandun.-ti
and those monks were uplifted and greatly rejoiced in what was said by the Gracious One.

Nandakovādasuttaṁ Niṭṭhitaṁ BJT, PTS, ChS: Nandakovādasuttaṁ Catutthaṁ; RTE: Nandakovādasuttaṁ Niṭṭhitaṁ Catutthaṁ.62
The Discourse giving Nandaka’s Advice is Finished

 

Appendix

Nandakattheravatthu
The Story about the Elder Nandaka

AN 1.4.7
(text)

Etad-aggaṁ bhikkhave mama sāvakānaṁ bhikkhūnaṁ,
This is the foremost of my monk disciples, monks,

bhikkhunovādakānaṁ, yad-idaṁ, Nandako.
amongst those who advise the nuns, that is to say, Nandaka.

 

AA 1.4.7
(commentary)

Sattame, “Bhikkhunovādakānaṁ, yad-idaṁ, Nandako,” SHB omits: yad-idaṁ, Nandako, reads: Bhikkhunovādakānan-ti.63 ti
In the seventh (story), “Amongst those who advise the nuns, that is to say, Nandaka,”

ayaṁ hi Thero Dhammakathaṁ kathento
while this Elder monk was giving a talk on Dhamma

ekasamodhāne pañca bhikkhunīsatāni Arahattaṁ pāpesi.
altogether five hundred nuns attained Liberation.

Tasmā bhikkhunovādakānaṁ aggo nāma jāto.
Therefore he became known as the foremost amongst those who advise the nuns.

Tassa pañhakamme ayam-anupubbikathā:
This is the exposition concerning the enquiry into his (previous) deeds:

 

His Aspiration and Good Deeds

Ayam-pi hi ChS: Ayañ-hi.64 Padumuttarabuddhakāle,
At the time of the Buddha Padumuttara,

Haṁsavatīnagare kulagehe SHB: kulaghare; different word, same meaning.65 nibbatto,
he was reborn in a good family house in Haṁsavatī,

Satthu Dhammadesanaṁ SHB: Dhammakathaṁ; different word, same meaning.66 suṇanto,
and while listening to the Teacher’s teaching of the Dhamma,

Satthāraṁ ekaṁ bhikkhuṁ bhikkhunovādakānaṁ aggaṭṭhāne ṭhapentaṁ disvā,
he saw the Teacher set a certain monk aside as being foremost amongst those who advise the nuns,

adhikārakammaṁ katvā, taṁ ṭhānantaraṁ patthesi.
did a great deed, and aspired for that position himself.

 

His Last Life

So yāvajīvaṁ kusalaṁ katvā, devamanussesu saṁsaranto,
He did wholesome (deeds) for the rest of his life, and being reborn amongst gods and men (only),

imasmiṁ Buddhuppāde, Sāvatthiyaṁ kulagehe paṭisandhiṁ gahetvā, SHB: gaṇhitvā; different word, same meaning.67
when this (Gotama) Buddha arose, after being conceived in a good family home in Sāvatthī,

vayappatto Satthu Dhammadesanaṁ sutvā,
when he was mature he heard the Teacher teach the Dhamma,

paṭiladdhasaddho Satthu santike pabbajitvā,
gained faith and went forth in the presence of the Teacher,

vipassanaṁ vaḍḍhetvā Arahattaṁ pāpuṇitvā, ChS: pāpuṇi; but the sentence hasn’t ended, and we wouldn’t expect a finite verb yet. 68
developed insight and attained Liberation,

pubbenivāsañāṇe ca ciṇṇavasī ahosi.
and became one who had mastered knowledge of his former lives.

So catūsu parisāsu sampattāsu:
Within the four assemblies

“Sabbesaṁ yeva manaṁ gahetvā kathetuṁ sakkotī,” ti
(it was said): “He was able to preach so as to capture everyone’s mind,”

Dhammakathikanandako nāma jāto.
and he became known as Nandaka the Dhamma Preacher.

Tathāgato pi kho Rohiṇīnadītīre cumbaṭakakalahe nikkhamitvā,
The Realised One departed from the string of quarrels on the bank of the River Rohiṇī,

pabbajitānaṁ pañcannaṁ Sākiyakumārasatānaṁ anabhiratiyā uppannāya,
and discontent having arisen for the five hundred Sākiyan Princes who went forth,

te bhikkhū ādāya Kuṇāladahaṁ gantvā,
he took those monks and went to the Kuṇāla Lake,

Kuṇālajātakakathāya nesaṁ saṁviggabhāvaṁ ñatvā,
and understanding their spiritual anxiety because of the talk on the Kuṇāla Birth Story,

Catusaccakathaṁ kathetvā, Sotāpattiphale patiṭṭhāpesi.
and preaching a talk on the Four Truths, he established them in the fruit of Stream-Entry.

Aparabhāge Mahāsamayasuttaṁ kathetvā aggaphalaṁ Arahattaṁ pāpesi.
Later he preached the Discourse on the Great Assembly and made them attain the supreme fruit of Liberation.

Tesaṁ Therānaṁ purāṇadutiyikā:
Those Elders’ former wives

“Amhe dāni idha kiṁ karissāmā?” ti vatvā,
saying: “What do we have to do here now?”

sabbā va ekacittā hutvā, Mahāpajāpatiṁ upasaṅkamitvā, pabbajjaṁ yāciṁsu.
had but one thought, and after approaching Mahāpajāpatī they requested the going forth.

ChS adds: pi.69 pañcasatā pi Theriyā santike pabbajjañ-ca upasampadañ-ca labhiṁsu.
In the presence of that Elder nun all five hundred received the going forth and the higher ordination.

 

His Past Life

Atītānantarāya pana jātiyā
In his immediately past life

sabbā va tā Nandakatherassa ChS: Nandakattherassa; showing gemination.70 Rājaputtabhāve SHB: Rājattabhāve; perhaps would mean: during his Kingship.71 ṭhitassa pādaparicārikā ahesuṁ.
they all had been the wives of the Elder Nandaka when he was a Prince.

Tena samayena Satthā: “Bhikkhū bhikkhuniyo ovadantū,” ti āha.
At that time the Teacher said: “Monks must advise the nuns.”

Thero attano vāre sampatte,
When the Elder’s turn arrived,

tāsaṁ purimabhave attano pādaparicārikabhāvaṁ ñatvā cintesi:
knowing they were his wives in a previous existence he thought:

‘Maṁ imassa Bhikkhunīsaṅghassa majjhe nisinnaṁ
‘Sitting in the midst of this Community of nuns

upamāyo ca kāraṇāni ca āharitvā,
and bringing forward similes and reasons,

Dhammaṁ kathayamānaṁ disvā,
and being seen preaching the Dhamma,

añño pubbenivāsañāṇalābhī bhikkhu imaṁ kāraṇaṁ oloketvā,
(if) another monk who also had knowledge of previous lives looked at the reason for it,

“Āyasmā Nandako yāvajjadivasā orodhe na vissajjeti,
o he might think he could say: “Venerable Nandaka up to this day did not send off his concubines,

sobhatāyasmā ChS: sobhatāyam-āyasmā; locative form. 72 orodhaparivuto,” ti vattabbaṁ maññeyyā.’ ti
this venerable is resplendent when surrounded by his concubines.”

Tasmā sayaṁ agantvā aññaṁ bhikkhuṁ pesesi.
Therefore when it came to his (turn) he sent another monk.

 

Teaching the Nuns

Tā pana pañcasatā bhikkhuniyo Therasseva ovādaṁ paccāsiṁsanti. ChS: paccāsīsanti; alternative form.73
But those five hundred nuns desired the Elder’s advice.

Iminā kāraṇena Bhagavā
For this reason the Gracious One

“Attano vāre sampatte, aññaṁ apesetvā,
o said to the Elder monk: “When your turn arrives, without sending another,

sayam-eva gantvā, Bhikkhunīsaṅghaṁ ovadāhī,” ti Theraṁ āha.
having gone yourself, advise the Community of nuns.”

So Satthu kathaṁ paṭibāhituṁ asakkonto,
He was unable to refuse the Teacher’s speech,

attano vāre sampatte cātuddase bhikkhunisaṅghassa ovādaṁ datvā,
and when his turn arrived on the fourteenth he gave advice to the Community of nuns,

sabbā va tā bhikkhuniyo saḷāyatanapaṭimaṇḍitāya
o and with a Dhamma teaching elaborating on the six sense spheres

Dhammadesanāya Sotāpattiphale patiṭṭhāpesi.
he established all the nuns in the fruit of Stream-Entry.

Tā bhikkhuniyo, Therassa Dhammadesanāya attamanā hutvā,
Those nuns, being uplifted by the Elder’s Dhamma teaching,

Satthu santikaṁ gantvā attano SHB: attanā; instrumental, when genitive is needed.74 paṭividdhaguṇaṁ ārocesuṁ.
went into the presence of the Teacher and informed him of their penetration (of the Dhamma).

Satthā: ‘Kasmiṁ nu kho Dhammaṁ desente
The Teacher thought: ‘With what Dhamma teaching

imā bhikkhuniyo uparimaggaphalāni pāpuṇeyyun,’-ti
will these nuns attain the further Paths and Fruits?’

āvajjento: ‘Puna taṁ yeva Nandakassa Dhammadesanaṁ sutvā
and reflecting further: ‘Listening again to Nandaka’s Dhamma teaching surely

pañcasatā pi etā Arahattaṁ pāpuṇissantī.’ ti
these five hundred will attain Liberation.’

Disvā, punadivase pi Therasseva santikaṁ Dhammasavaṇatthāya ChS: Dhammassavanatthāya; showing gemination.75 pesesi,
Having seen (that), on another day he sent them into the Elder’s presence to listen to the Dhamma,

tā punadivase Dhammaṁ sutvā sabbā va Arahattaṁ pattā.
and on that day they listened to Dhamma and attained Liberation.

Taṁdivasaṁ Bhagavā tāsaṁ bhikkhunīnaṁ attano santikaṁ āgatakāle,
On that day the Gracious One came into the presence of those nuns,

Dhammadesanāya saphalabhāvaṁ ñatvā,
he understood (they had attained) the fruition state with that Dhamma teaching,

“Bhiyyo ChS: Hiyyo; alternative form.76 Nandakassa Dhammadesanā cātuddasiyaṁ candasadisī ahosi,
and he said: “Nandaka’s Dhamma teaching yesterday, was like the moon on the fourteenth day,

ajja pannarasiyaṁ candasadisī,” ti vatvā
today it is like the moon on the fifteenth day,”

Therassa sādhukāraṁ datvā, tad-eva ca kāraṇaṁ aṭṭhuppattiṁ katvā, SHB omits: tad-eva ca kāraṇaṁ aṭṭhuppattiṁ katvā.77
and having given his approval to the Elder monk, for that reason as the occasion had arisen,

Theraṁ bhikkhunovādakānaṁ aggaṭṭhāne ṭhapesī. ti
he placed this Elder monk in the foremost position amongst those who advise the nuns.