2:6  The Dhamma Life

Living the Dhamma life,

living the holy life:

This, they say, is the highest power.

But if, having gone forth

from home into homelessness,

you are harsh-mouthed,

delighting in injury, a stupid beast,

your life is more evil.

You increase your own dust.

A monk delighting in quarrels,

shrouded under delusion,

doesn’t know the Dhamma

even when proclaimed by the Awakened One.

Injuring those developed in mind,1

he, surrounded by ignorance,

doesn’t know defilement

to be          the path

that leads     to hell.

Arriving at deprivation,

from womb     to womb,

from darkness     to darkness,

a monk of this sort, after death,

comes to suffering.

Just like a cesspit, full, used for many years,

one of this sort, befouled,

would be hard to clean.

Monks, whoever you know

to be like this,

depending on homes,

evil     in his desires,

evil     in his resolves,

evil     in behavior & range,

all of you, united, shun him.

Sweep away the sweepings,

throw away the trash,

then remove the chaff:


who think they’re contemplatives.

Having swept away those of evil desires, evil

in behavior & range,

then pure, affiliate mindfully

with the pure.

Then, united, astute,

you will put an end

to suffering & stress.2

vv. 274–283


1. According to MN 36, “developed in mind” means able to experience painful feelings without their invading and remaining in the mind.

2. These last two verses are quoted in the Milinda Pañhā.

See also: SN 35:200; AN 3:83; AN 3:129; AN 8:13–14; Ud 5:5