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Sukhumāla Suttaṃ

(A.i.145)

Delicate

“I was delicately nurtured, monks, most delicately, extremely delicately. For my sake, monks, in my father’s residence ponds were built. In one blue lotuses (uppalaṃ) grew, in one red lotuses (padumaṃ) grew, in one white lotuses (puṇḍarīkaṃ) grew, just for my sake. I used no sandalwood, monks, that was not from Benares. My turban, shirt, sarong, and upper robe were from Benares. Night and day, monks, a white parasol was held over me: ‘Let not cold, heat, pollen, dust, or dew affect him.’

“For my use, monks, there were three palaces — one for the cold season, one for the hot season, and one for the rainy season. During the four months of the rainy season, monks, I was entertained in the rainy season palace with music only by women, and did not leave it. Whereas in other dwellings, monks, the slaves and workers were given broken rice and sour gruel, in my father’s dwelling the slaves and workers were given rice (sāli), meat (maṃsa), and milk-rice porridge (odana).

“Being endowed with such luxury and delicacy it occurred to me: ‘An uninstructed ordinary person being subject to aging and not having passed beyond it, on seeing aging in others is troubled, anxious, disgusted, although not having transcended it. I reflected that being myself subject to aging and not having passed beyond it, on seeing aging in others it was improper for me to be troubled, anxious, and disgusted by it. Reflecting thus, monks, all intoxication with youth (yobbanamado) vanished.

“An uninstructed ordinary person being subject to disease and not having passed beyond it, on seeing disease in others is troubled, anxious, disgusted, although not having transcended it. I reflected that being myself subject to disease and not having passed beyond it, on seeing disease in others it was improper for me to be troubled, anxious, and disgusted by it. Reflecting thus, monks, all intoxication with health (ārogyamado) vanished.

“An uninstructed ordinary person being subject to death and not having passed beyond it, on seeing death in others is troubled, anxious, disgusted, although not having transcended it. I reflected that being myself subject to death and not having passed beyond it, on seeing death in others it was improper for me to be troubled, anxious, and disgusted by it. Reflecting thus, monks, all intoxication with life (jīvitamado) vanished.

“There are these three intoxications, monks. What three? Intoxication with youth, intoxication with health, and intoxication with life. Due to intoxication with youth, monks, an uninstructed ordinary person does bodily misconduct, verbal misconduct, and mental misconduct. Having done bodily, verbal, and mental misconduct, on the break-up of the body after death he or she arises in a state of loss, an unfortunate destination, in perdition, in hell. Due to intoxication with health … due to intoxication with life, monks, an uninstructed ordinary person does bodily misconduct, verbal misconduct, and mental misconduct. Having done bodily, verbal, and mental misconduct, on the break-up of the body after death he or she arises in a state of loss, an unfortunate destination, in perdition, in hell.

“Due to intoxication with youth, monks, a monk gives up the training and returns to an inferior life. Or due to intoxication with health, monks ... or due to intoxication with life, monks, a monk gives up the training and returns to an inferior life.

“Being subject to disease, aging, and death,
Ordinary people are disgusted by these things.

“If I too were to be disgusted with these things
It would not be proper for me to abide like this.

“While abiding thus, have known the state without attachment
To intoxication with health, youth, and life;

“I overcame all intoxication, having seen the peace in renunciation
Zeal arose in me to strive for nibbāna.

“It was no longer possible for me to see pleasure in sensuality,
There would be no turning back from the goal of the holy life.”