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Dhp 383–423 From… Brāhmaṇavagga: Brahmins—Part 1

Strive and cut the stream!
Dispel sensual pleasures, brahmin.
Knowing the ending of conditions,
know the uncreated, brahmin.

When a brahmin
has gone beyond two things,
then they consciously
make an end of all fetters.

One for whom there is no crossing over
or crossing back, or crossing over and back;
stress-free, detached,
that’s who I call a brahmin.

Absorbed, rid of hopes,
their task completed, without defilements,
arrived at the highest goal:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

The sun blazes by day,
the moon glows at night,
the aristocrat shines in armor,
and the brahmin shines in absorption.
But all day and all night,
the Buddha shines with glory.

A brahmin’s so-calledsince they’ve banished evil,
an ascetic’s so-calledsince they live a serene life.
One who has renounced all stains
is said to be a “renunciant”.

One should never strike a brahmin,
nor should a brahmin retaliate.
Woe to the one who hurts a brahmin,
and woe for the one who retaliates.

Nothing is better for a brahmin
than to hold their mind back from attachment.
As cruelty in the mind gradually subsides,
suffering also subsides.

Who does nothing wrong
by body, speech or mind,
restrained in these three respects,
that’s who I call a brahmin.

You should graciously honor
the one from whom you learn the Dhamma
taught by the awakened Buddha,
as a brahmin honors the sacred flame.

Not by matted hair or family,
or birth is one a brahmin.
Those who have truth and principle:
they are pure, they are brahmins.

Why the matted hair, you fool,
and why the skin of deer?
The tangle is inside you,
yet you polish up your outsides.

A person who wears robes of rags,
lean, their limbs showing veins,
meditating alone in the forest,
that’s who I call a brahmin.

I don’t call someone a brahmin
after the mother or womb they came from.
If they still have attachments,
they’re just someone who says “sir”.
Having nothing, taking nothing:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

Having cut off all fetters
they have no anxiety.
They’ve slipped their chains and are detached:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

They’ve cut the strap and harness,
the reins and bridle too,
with cross-bar lifted, they’re awakened:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

Abuse, killing, caging:
they endure these without anger.
Patience is their powerful army:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

Not irritable or stuck up,
dutiful in precepts and observances,
tamed, bearing their final body:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

Like water from a lotus leaf,
like a mustard seed off a pin-point,
sensual pleasures slip off them:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

They understand for themselves
the end of suffering in this life;
with burden put down, detached:
that’s who I call a brahmin.

Read the entire translation of Dhammapada 383–423 Brāhmaṇavagga: Brahmins by Bhikkhu Sujato on Or read a different translation on,, or Or explore the Pali on

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