Thig 6.1 Pañcasatamattā­therīgāthā: Paṭācārā, Who Had a Following of Five Hundred

“One whose path you do not know,
not whence they came nor where they went;
though they came from who knows where,
you mourn that being, crying, ‘Oh my son!’

But one whose path you do know,
whence they came or where they went;
that one you do not lament—
such is the nature of living creatures.

Unasked he came,
he left without leave.
He must have come from somewhere,
and stayed who knows how many days.
He left from here by one road,
he will go from there by another.

Departing with the form of a human,
he will go on transmigrating.
As he came, so he went:
why cry over that?”

“Oh! For you have plucked the arrow from me,
so hard to see, stuck in the heart.
You’ve swept away the grief for my son,
in which I once was mired.

Today I’ve plucked the arrow,
I’m hungerless, extinguished.
I go for refuge to that sage, the Buddha,
to his teaching, and to the Sangha.”

That is how Paṭācārā, who had a following of five hundred, declared her enlightenment.


Read Thig 6.1 Pañcasatamattātherīgāthā: Paṭācārā, Who Had a Following of Five Hundred translated by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaCentral.net, SuttaFriends.org, or DhammaTalks.org. Or listen on Voice.SuttaCentral.net.

SN 6.15 Parinibbānasutta: Final Extinguishment

At one time the Buddha was staying between a pair of sal trees in the sal forest of the Mallas at Upavattana near Kusinārā at the time of his final extinguishment.

Then the Buddha said to the mendicants: “Come now, mendicants, I say to you all: ‘Conditions fall apart. Persist with diligence.’”

These were the Realized One’s last words.

Then the Buddha entered the first absorption. Emerging from that, he entered the second absorption. Emerging from that, he successively entered into and emerged from the third absorption, the fourth absorption, the dimension of infinite space, the dimension of infinite consciousness, the dimension of nothingness, and the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. Then he entered the cessation of perception and feeling.

Then he emerged from the cessation of perception and feeling and entered the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception. Emerging from that, he successively entered into and emerged from the dimension of nothingness, the dimension of infinite consciousness, the dimension of infinite space, the fourth absorption, the third absorption, the second absorption, and the first absorption. Emerging from that, he successively entered into and emerged from the second absorption and the third absorption. Then he entered the fourth absorption. Emerging from that the Buddha immediately became fully extinguished.

When the Buddha became fully extinguished, along with the full extinguishment, Brahmā Sahampati recited this verse:

“All creatures in this world
must lay down this bag of bones.
For even a Teacher such as this,
unrivaled in the world,
the Realized One, attained to power,
the Buddha became fully extinguished.”

When the Buddha became fully extinguished, Sakka, lord of gods, recited this verse:

“Oh! Conditions are impermanent,
their nature is to rise and fall;
having arisen, they cease;
their stilling is true bliss.”

When the Buddha became fully extinguished, Venerable Ānanda recited this verse:

“Then there was terror!
Then they had goosebumps!
When the Buddha, endowed with all fine qualities,
became fully extinguished.”

When the Buddha became fully extinguished, Venerable Anuruddha recited this verse:

“There was no more breathing
for the poised one of steady heart.
Imperturbable, committed to peace,
the seer became fully extinguished.

He put up with painful feelings
without flinching.
The liberation of his heart
was like the extinguishing of a lamp.”


Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 6.15 Parinibbānasutta: Final Extinguishment by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaFriends.org, or DhammaTalks.org.

AN 3.39 Sukhumālasutta: A Delicate Lifestyle

“My lifestyle was delicate, mendicants, most delicate, extremely delicate.

In my father’s home, lotus ponds were made just for me. In some, blue water lilies blossomed, while in others, there were pink or white lotuses, just for my benefit. I only used sandalwood from Kāsī, and my turbans, jackets, sarongs, and upper robes also came from Kāsī. And a white parasol was held over me night and day, with the thought: ‘Don’t let cold, heat, grass, dust, or damp bother him.’

I had three stilt longhouses—one for the winter, one for the summer, and one for the rainy season. I stayed in a stilt longhouse without coming downstairs for the four months of the rainy season, where I was entertained by musicians—none of them men.

While the bondservants, workers, and staff in other houses are given rough gruel with pickles to eat, in my father’s home they eat fine rice with meat.

Amid such prosperity and such a delicate lifestyle, I thought: ‘When an uneducated ordinary person—who is liable to grow old, not being exempt from old age—sees someone else who is old, they’re horrified, repelled, and disgusted, overlooking the fact that they themselves are in the same situation. But since I, too, am liable to grow old, it would not be appropriate for me to be horrified, embarrassed, and disgusted, when I see someone else who is old.’ Reflecting like this, I entirely gave up the vanity of youth.

‘When an uneducated ordinary person—who is liable to get sick, not being exempt from sickness—sees someone else who is sick, they’re horrified, repelled, and disgusted, overlooking the fact that they themselves are in the same situation. But since I, too, am liable to get sick, it would not be appropriate for me to be horrified, embarrassed, and disgusted, when I see someone else who is sick.’ Reflecting like this, I entirely gave up the vanity of health.

‘When an uneducated ordinary person—who is liable to die, not being exempt from death—sees someone else who is dead, they’re horrified, repelled, and disgusted, overlooking the fact that they themselves are in the same situation. But since I, too, am liable to die, it would not be appropriate for me to be horrified, embarrassed, and disgusted, when I see someone else who is dead.’ Reflecting like this, I entirely gave up the vanity of life.

There are these three vanities. What three? The vanity of youth, of health, and of life.

Intoxicated with the vanity of youth, an uneducated ordinary person does bad things by way of body, speech, and mind. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell.

Intoxicated with the vanity of health …

Intoxicated with the vanity of life, an uneducated ordinary person does bad things by way of body, speech, and mind. When their body breaks up, after death, they’re reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell.

Intoxicated with the vanity of youth, health, or life, a mendicant resigns the training and returns to a lesser life.

For others, sickness is natural,
and so are old age and death.
Though this is how their nature is,
ordinary people feel disgusted.

If I were to be disgusted
with creatures whose nature is such,
it would not be appropriate for me,
since my life is just the same.

Living in such a way,
I understood the reality without attachments.
I mastered all vanities—
of health, of youth,

and even of life—
seeing renunciation as sanctuary.
Zeal sprang up in me
as I looked to extinguishment.

Now I’m unable
to indulge in sensual pleasures;
there’s no turning back,
I’m committed to the spiritual life.”


Read this translation of Aṅguttara Nikāya 3.39 Sukhumālasutta: A Delicate Lifestyle by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaCentral.net, or DhammaTalks.org.