At one time the Buddha was staying near Rājagaha, in the Bamboo Grove, the squirrels’ feeding ground. The brahmin Bhāradvāja the Fiend heard a rumor to the effect that a brahmin of the Bhāradvāja clan had gone forth from the lay life to homelessness in the presence of the ascetic Gotama. Angry and displeased he went to the Buddha and abused and insulted him with rude, harsh words.
But when he said this, the Buddha kept silent.
Then Bhāradvāja the Fiend said to the Buddha, “You’re beaten, ascetic, you’re beaten!”
“‘Ha! I won!’ thinks the fool,
when speaking with harsh words.
Patience is the true victory
for those who understand.
When you get angry at an angry person
you just make things worse for yourself.
When you don’t get angry at an angry person
you win a battle hard to win.
When you know that the other is angry,
you act for the good of both
yourself and the other
if you’re mindful and stay calm.
People unskilled in Dhamma
consider one who heals both
oneself and the other
to be a fool.”
When he had spoken, Bhāradvāja the Fiend said to the Buddha, “Excellent, Master Gotama! … I go for refuge to Master Gotama, to the teaching, and to the mendicant Saṅgha. Sir, may I receive the going forth, the ordination in the ascetic Gotama’s presence?”
And the brahmin Bhāradvāja the Rude received the going forth, the ordination in the Buddha’s presence. Not long after his ordination, Venerable Bhāradvāja the Rude, living alone, withdrawn, diligent, keen, and resolute, soon realized the supreme end of the spiritual path in this very life. He lived having achieved with his own insight the goal for which gentlemen rightly go forth from the lay life to homelessness.
He understood: “Rebirth is ended; the spiritual journey has been completed; what had to be done has been done; there is no return to any state of existence.” And Venerable Bhāradvāja became one of the perfected.
Read this translation of Saṁyutta Nikāya 7.3 Asurindakasutta: With Bhāradvāja the Fiend by Bhikkhu Sujato on SuttaCentral.net. Or read a different translation on SuttaFriends.org. Or listen on PaliAudio.com or Voice.SuttaCentral.net. Or explore the Pali on DigitalPaliReader.online.