Guide to Tipitaka

Canonical Pâli Buddhist Literature of the Theravâda School

by U Ko Lay | 48,543 words

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Part 5 - Suttampata Pali

As well-known as Dhammapada, Sutta Nipata is also a work m verse with occasional introductions in prose It is divided into five vaggas:

  1. Uraga Vagga of 12 suttas,
  2. Cula Vagga of 14 suttas,
  3. Maha Vagga of 12 suttas,
  4. Atthaka Vagga of 16 suttas and
  5. Parayana Vagga of 16 questions

In the twelve suttas of the Uraga Vagga are found some important teachings of the Buddha which may be practised in the course of one's daily life

"Truefnends are rare to come by these days, a show of friend- ship very often hides some private ends Man's mind is defiled by self-interest So, becoming disillusioned, roam alone like a rhinoceros "

(Khaggavisana Sutta)

"Not by birth does one become an outcast, not by birth does one become a brahmana, By one's action one becomes an outcast, by one's action one becomes a brahmana *

(Vasala Sutta)

"As a mother even with her life protects her only child, so let one cultivate immeasurable loving-kindness towards all living beings/'

(Metta Sutta)

Parayana Vagga deals with sixteen questions asked by sixteen brahmin youths while the Buddha is staying at Pasanaka Shrine in the country of Magadha The Buddha gives his answers to each of the questions asked by the youths Knowing the meaning of each question and of the answers given by the Buddha, if one practises the Dhamma as instructed in this sutta, one can surely reach the Other Shore, which is free from ageing and death. The Dhamma in this sutta is known as Parayana because it leads to the Other Shore, Nibbana.

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