Chapter XX - MAGGA VAGGA - The Way or The Path

THE EIGHTFOLD PATH IS THE BEST

THE EIGHTFOLD PATH IS THE BEST

Maggan' atthangiko settho saccanam caturo pada
Virago settho dhammanam dipadanan ca cakkhuma.
[273]


The best of paths is theEightfold Path.The best of truths are thefour Sayings.
Non-attachmentis the best of states. The best of bipeds is the Seeing One. [273]


FOLLOW THIS PATH FOR PURITY

Eso'va maggo natth' anno dassanassa visuddhiya
Etamhi tumhe patipajjatha marass' etam pamohanam.
[274]


This is the only Way. There is none other for the purity of vision. Do you follow this path.
This is the bewilderment of Mara. [274]


FOLLOW THIS PATH TO END SUFFERING

Etamhi tumbe patipanna dukkhassantam karissatha
Akkhato ve maya maggo annaya salla santhanam.
[275]


Following this Way you shall make an end of suffering.
This verily is the Way declared by me when I had learnt to remove the arrow (of suffering).[275]


YOU MUST EXERT YOURSELVES

Tumhehi kiccam atappam akkhataro tathagata
Patipanna pamokkhanti jhayino mara bandhana.
[276]


You yourselvesshould make the effort;the Tathagatasare only teachers.
Those who enter this Path and who are meditative, are delivered from the bonds of Mara. [276]



XX:01 The path to perfection

A group of bhikkhus after accompanying the Buddha to a village, returned to the Jetavana monastery. In the evening they talked about the trip, especially the nature of the land: whether it was level or hilly, clayey or stony, etc. The Buddha came to them in the midst of their conversation and said to them, 'Bhikkhus the path you are talking about is external to you; a bhikkhu should only be concerned with the path of the Noble Ones (ariyas) and strive to do what should be done for the attainment of perfection that leads to the realisation of Perfect Peace (Nibbana).

Notes:

  1. The Eightfold Path is the Middle Way discovered by the Buddha for the realization of Nibbana. It consists of right understanding (samma ditthi), right thoughts (samma samkappa), right speech (samma vaca), right action (samma kammanta), right livelihood (samma ajiva), right effort (samma vayama), right mindfulness (samma sati), and right concentration (samma samadhi). This is the unique path of Enlightenment. From a philosophical stand-point these eight factors are the eight mental states found in the supra mundane consciousness which has Nibbana for its object.
  2. They are the four Noble Truths - suffering, the cause of suffering, the destruction of suffering and the path leading to the destruction of suffering. The first truth of suffering is to be comprehended, the cause of suffering (which is craving) is to be eradicated, the destruction of suffering (which is Nibbana) is to be realized, the path leading to the destruction of suffering (which is the Eightfold Path) is to be developed. Whether the Buddhas arise or not these four truths exist in the world. It is the Buddhas that reveal them to mankind.
  3. Viraga = Nibbana
  4. Of lust etc.
  5. That is, to control passions in order to realize Nibbana
  6. When the Buddha refers to Himself, He employs the term Tathagata which means 'who thus hath come'.

* The Buddha is the firstand only religious teacher who proclaimed that man can gain his liberation without depending on any supernatural or external agency.