Dhammapada Chapter 23

The Elephant
320 Silently shall I endure abuse as the elephant in battle endures the arrow sent from the bow: for the world is ill-natured.
321 They lead a tamed elephant to battle, the king mounts a tamed elephant; the tamed is the best among men, he who silently endures abuse.
322 Mules are good, if tamed, and noble Sindhu horses, and elephants with large tusks; but he who tames himself is better still.
323 For with these animals does no man reach the untrodden land*, where a tamed man goes on a tamed animal, that is, on his own well-tamed self.

324 The elephant called Dhanapalaka, his temples running with sap, and difficult to hold, does not eat a morsel when bound; the elephant longs for the elephant grove.
325 If a man becomes fat and a great eater, if he is sleepy and rolls himself about, that fool, like a hog fed on wash, is born again and again.
326 This mind of mine went formerly wandering about as it liked, as it listed, as it pleased; but I shall now hold it in thoroughly, as the rider who holds the hook holds in the furious elephant.
327 Be not thoughtless, watch your thoughts! Draw yourself out of the evil way, like an elephant sunk in mud.
328 If a man find a prudent companion who walks with him, is wise, and lives soberly, he may walk with him, overcoming all dangers, happy, but considerate.
329 If a man find no prudent companion who walks with him, is wise, and lives soberly, let him walk alone, like a king who has left his conquered country behind,—like an elephant in the forest.
330 It is better to live alone, there is no companionship with a fool; let a man walk alone, let him commit no sin, with few wishes, like an elephant in the forest.
331 If an occasion arises, friends are pleasant; enjoyment is pleasant, whatever be the cause; a good work is pleasant in the hour of death; the giving up of all grief is pleasant.
332 Pleasant in the world is the state of a mother, pleasant the state of a father, pleasant the state of an ascetic seeker, pleasant the state of a truly wise person.
333 Pleasant is virtue lasting to old age, pleasant is a faith firmly rooted; pleasant is attainment of intelligence, pleasant is avoiding of unskilful acts.**

* Nirvana
** sins

Comments are closed.