Thag 10:5  Kappa

Full of the many clans of impurities,

the great manufacturer of excrement,

like a stagnant pool,

a great tumor,

great wound,

full of blood & lymph,

immersed in a cesspool,

trickling liquids,       the body

is oozing foulness—always.

Bound together with sixty sinews,

plastered with a stucco of muscle,

wrapped in a jacket of skin,

this foul body is of no worth at all.

Linked together with a chain of bones,

stitched together with tendon-threads,

it produces its various postures,

from being hitched up together.

Headed surely to death,

in the presence of the King of Mortality,

the man who learns to discard it right here,

goes wherever he wants.

Covered with ignorance,

the body’s tied down with a four-fold tie,1

sunk in the floods,2

caught in the net of obsessions,3

conjoined with five hindrances,4

given over to thought,

accompanied with the root of craving,

roofed with delusion’s roofing.

That’s how the body functions,

compelled by the compulsion of kamma,

but its attainment ends

in ruin.

Its many becomings go

to ruin.

These who hold to this body as mine

—blind fools, people run-of-the-mill—

fill the horrific cemetery,

taking on further becoming.

Those who stay uninvolved with this body

—as they would with a serpent

smeared with dung—

disgorging the root of becoming,5

will, without effluent,

totally unbind.


1. The four-fold tie: greed, ill will, attachment to habits & practice, and dogmatic obsession with views.

2. Floods: sensuality, becoming, views, and ignorance. See SN 45:171. These are identical with the four yokes. See AN 4:10.

3. Obsessions: sensual passion, resistance, views, uncertainty, conceit, passion for becoming, and ignorance. See AN 7:11–12.

4. Hindrances: sensual desire, ill will, sloth & drowsiness, restlessness & anxiety, and uncertainty. See DN 2 and SN 46:51.

5. The root of becoming: craving.

See also: AN 7:48; Sn 1:11