Dandavagga – Violence (verses 129-145)

All tremble at the rod. All fear death. Comparing others with oneself, one should neither strike nor cause to strike.

All tremble at the rod. Life is dear to all. Comparing others with oneself, one should neither strike nor cause to strike.

Whoever tries to seek happiness through hurting others, cannot find happiness.

Whoever tries to seek happiness without hurting others, can find happiness.

Speak not harshly to anyone. Those thus addressed will retort. Painful, indeed, is vindictive speech. Blows in exchange may bruise you.

If, like a cracked gong, you silence yourself, you have already attained Nibbana: no vindictiveness will be found in you.

As with a staff the heardsman drives his cattle to pasture, even so do old age and death drive out the lives of beings.

So, when a fool does wrong deeds, he does not realize (their evil nature); by his own deeds the stupid man is tormented, like one burnt by fire.

Whosoever causes pain to the innocent ones will himself suffer quickly from one of the following ten states.

He will get sharp pain or injury of the body, or get serious illness or become mad.

Or punishment by the kind, or being accused of doing wrong or death of relatives or loss of treasures.

Or his house will be struck by lightning or after death, he will be reborn in Hell.

Neither wandering naked, nor matted locks, nor filth, nor fasting, nor lying on the ground, nor dust, nor ashes, nor striving squatting on the heels, can purify a mortal who has not overcome doubts.

Though gaily decked, if he should live in peace, (with passions) subdued, (and senses) controlled, certain (of the four Paths of Sainthood), perfectly pure, laying aside the rod (in his relations) towards all living beings a Brahmana indeed is he, and ascetic is he, a Bhikkhu is he.

Those, who are ashamed to do shameful things, are rare. Such men can be compared to a thoroughbred horse who does not get whipped.

A man, who practises virtue, who has confidence in what he does, who meditates and who understands the Law, such a man will get rid of suffering as a thoroughbred horse gets rid of being whipped.

Irrigators lead the waters. Fletchers bend the shafts. Carpenters fashion the wood. The virtuous control themselves.