Dhammapada: Sukhavagga
Chapter 15 — Verses 197 to 208

15. Happiness


‘Midst those with animosity,
Those seething with antipathy,
Indeed, we live on happily,
Well wishing and kind heartedly.


‘Midst sick-at-heart humanity,
Their consciousness in malady,
Indeed, we live on happily,
In deepest health and sanity.


‘Midst those who crave insatiably,
Desiring things voraciously,
Indeed, we live on happily,
Indifferent and contentedly.


How happily, here,
Do we our days fill!
Possessionless, we,
The owners of nil.

We’ll feed on our joy;
We’ll live on delight;
Like the Radiant Gods
In the heavens of light.


From triumph grows antipathy;
The conquered sleep in misery.
The calmed ones slumber blissfully;
They’ve spurned defeat and victory.


There’s no blaze like desire;
No misfortune like ire;
Like the khandhas, no stress;
Like appeasement, no bliss.


Hunger is the primary disease; conditioned phenomena, the primary suffering. Having seen the truth of this, Nibbana becomes the primary happiness.


Above all gains, the best is health;
Contentment ranks as greatest wealth.
The loyal friend is kin that’s best;
Of all, Nibbana stands most blest.


Having tasted the sweet of seclusion,
And savoured the taste of tranquillity,
Dhamma’s ambrosia and joy may you drink,
And be free of distress and iniquity!


How blessed, the sight of accomplished disciples!
Companionship, ever, with them is delightful.
If ignorant people one never should see,
How endlessly pleasant, indeed, would it be!


A woman will grieve for a very long time
If she moves in the circle of people unwise;
For it ever is so, that to live with a fool
Is as painful as if one should live with a foe.

But a living acquaintance with people sagacious
Is happy as if they were cherished relations.


With men of great learning,
Insightful, discerning,
In wisdom excelling,
Devout, persevering,
The noble and excellent,
Ever associate,
Just as the moon
With the stars of the zodiac.


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