Ja 241 The Story about (the Jackal) Sabbadāṭha
In the present Devadatta is prospering, until the Buddha overcame the elephant Nāḷāgiri, which was sent to kill him, at which point his reputation faded. The Buddha tells a story of a jackal who learned a spell and subdued the animal kingdom, until he was tricked into bringing about his own destruction.
1. Siṅgālo mānathaddho ca, parivārena atthiko,
Pāpuṇi mahatiṁ bhūmiṁ rājāsi sabbadāṭhinaṁ.
A jackal, stiff with pride, wanting a retinue, became king of all toothed creatures on the great earth.
2. Evam-eva manussesu yo hoti parivāravā,
So hi tattha mahā hoti siṅgālo viya dāṭhinan-ti.
Even so he who has a retinue of men, is great there like the jackal amongst the toothed-ones.
In this connection, stiff with pride, stiff with the pride that has arisen because of his retinue.
Wanting a retinue means furthermore, he became one wanting a retinue.
On the great earth means having achieved greatness. I can’t see a way to get this meaning from the words in the verse.
Became king of all toothed creatures means became king of all toothed creatures. Analysing the compound and rephrasing in prose order.
Is great there means the person endowed with a retinue is known as great amongst that retinue.
Like the jackal amongst the toothed-ones, just as the jackal became great amongst the toothed-ones, and so was great, then just like the jackal, having fallen into heedlessness, depending on that retinue, he will come to destruction.
last updated: August 2022