With Pasura
Pasūra Sutta


“Here alone is purity found”
The so-called experts say.
They deny that purity is intrinsic to other religious teachings.
Wherever they are tethered is their so-called ‘Sacrosanctity’.
They are each committed to their separate 'Truths'.

Idheva suddhi iti vādayanti nāññesu dhammesu visuddhimāhu
Yaṃ nissitā tattha subhaṃ vadānā paccekasaccesu puthū niviṭṭhā


Looking for an argument, they gather at meetings,
Considering each other fools.

Clinging to knowledge,
Wanting praise,
They argue,
The so-called experts.

Te vādakāmā parisaṃ vigayha bālaṃ dahantī mithu aññamaññaṃ
Vadanti te aññasitā kathojjaṃ pasaṃsakāmā kusalā vadānā


In the midst of gatherings,
Engaged in dispute,
A person is desirous of praise
But is also anxious about the outcome.
If his argument is refuted he becomes downcast.
Shaken by criticism, he looks for his opponent’s weak spots.

Yutto kathāyaṃ parisāya majjhe pasaṃsamicchaṃ vinighāti hoti
Apāhatasmiṃ pana maṅku hoti nindāya so kuppati randhamesī


If the judge declares that his argument is inferior,
And therefore refuted,
The inferior speaker laments and grieves.
“He defeated me” he wails.

Yamassa vādaṃ parihīnamāhu apāhataṃ pañhavimaṃsakāse
Paridevati socati hīnavādo upaccagā manti anutthunāti


These disputes have arisen among ascetics.
In them are victory and defeat.
Seeing this,
One should desist from arguments
For they have no other purpose than the gaining of praise.

Ete vivādā samaṇesu jātā etesu ugghāti nighāti hoti
Etampi disvā virame kathojjaṃ na haññadatthatthipasaṃsalābhā


He who is praised for presenting his argument in the midst of a gathering,
Having attained his heart’s desire,
Is mirthful and conceited on account of it.

Pasaṃsito vā pana tattha hoti akkhāya vādaṃ parisāya majjhe
So hassatī uṇṇamatī ca tena pappuyya tamatthaṃ yathā mano ahu


That conceit will be the basis of later distress.
Moreover, he speaks with pride and arrogance.
Seeing this,
One should desist from arguments.
No purity is attained thereby, say the good.

Yā uṇṇatī sāssa vighātabhūmi mānātimānaṃ vadate paneso
Etampi disvā na vivādayetha na hi tena suddhiṃ kusalā vadanti


Like a hero nourished on royal food
He thunders along looking for an opponent.
Run wherever he is, hero.
There is nothing for you to fight against here.

Sūro yathā rājakhādāya puṭṭho abhigajjameti paṭisūramicchaṃ
Yeneva so tena palehi sūra pubbeva natthi yadidaṃ yudhāya


They who argue,
Grasping a view,
Asserting that “This is very Truth”,
You can talk to those people.
But here
There is no opponent for you to battle with when a dispute has arisen.

Ye diṭṭhimuggayha vivādayanti idameva saccanti ca vādayanti
Te tvaṃ vadassū na hi tedha atthi vādamhi jāte paṭisenikattā


Amongst those who have abandoned confrontation,
Who do not pit one view against another,
Amongst those who have not grasped any view as 'The Highest',
Who would you gain as opponent, Pasura?

Visenikatvā pana ye caranti diṭṭhīhi diṭṭhiṃ avirujjhamānā
Tesu tvaṃ kiṃ labhetho pasūra yesīdha natthī paramuggahītaṃ


So here you come,
Mulling over various theories in your mind.
But you are paired off with a purified man.
With him you will not be able to proceed.

Atha tvaṃ pavitakkamāgamā manasā diṭṭhigatāni cintayanto
Dhonena yugaṃ samāgamā na hi tvaṃ sakkhasi sampayātaveti

Notes on Translation:

  • Verse 824) The so-called experts say (kusalā vadānā): the phrase does not in fact occur till the next verse. For vadānā I follow PED’s ‘so-called’.
  • Verse 825) Diversity of their religious teachings: I call it this, because in v.824, añña is related to religious teachings.

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