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XXIV.TANHAVAGGA. CRAVING

334. The craving of the person addicted to careless living grows like a creeper; he jumps from life to life like a fruit-loving monkey in the forest.

335. Whomsoever in this world this base clinging thirst overcomes, his sorrows flourish like well-watered běrana grass.

336. Whoso in the world overcomes this base unruly craving ,from him sorrow falls away. like water-drops from a lotus-leaf.

337. This I say to you, Good luck to you all who have assembled here; dig up the root of craving, as one in quest of běrana's sweet root. Let not Măra crush you again and again, as the flood a reed.

338. Just as a tree, with roots undamaged and firm, though hewn down, sprouts again; even so , while latent craving is not rooted out, this sorrow springs up again and again.

339. In whom the thirty-six streams (of craving) that rush towards pleasurable objects are strong, then powerful, lustful thoughts carry off that misunderstanding person.

340. The streams (cravings) flow everywhere. The creeper sprouts and stands; seeing the creeper that has sprung up, with wisdom cut off the root.

341. To beings there arise pleasures that rush (towards sense-objects) and are moistened (with craving); bent on pleasure they seek happiness. Verily, those men come to birth and decay.

342. Folk enwrapt in craving are terrified like a captive hare; held fast be fetters and bonds , for long they come to sorrow again and again.

343. Folk enwrapt in craving are terrified like a captive hare, therefore a bhikkhu, who wishes his own passionlessness (Nibănna), should discard craving.

344. Whoever with no desire (for the household) finds pleasure in the forest (of asceticism), and though freed from desire (for the household), (yet) runs back to that very home, behold that very man! Freed he runs back to that very bondage

345. That which is made of iron, wood, or hemp is not a strong bond, say the wise; (but) that longing for jewels, ornaments, children, and wives is far greater an attachment.

346. That bond is strong, say the wise, it hurls down, yields, and is hard to loosen; this too they cut off, and leave the world, with no longing renouncing sensual pleasures.

347. They who are infatuated with lust fall back into the stream as a spider on its self-spun web; this too the wise cut off and wander, with no longing, giving up all sorrow.

348. Let go the past, let go the future, let go the present (front, back and middle); crossing to the farther shore of existence, with mind released from everything, do not again undergo birth and decay.

349. For the person who is perturbed by (evil) thoughts, who is of strong passions, who sees but the pleasurable, craving steadily grows. Indeed, he makes the bond strong.

350. He who delights in subduing (evil) thoughts, he who meditates on Impurity , he who is ever mindful, it is he who will make an end (of craving), he will cut Măra's bond.

351. He who has reached the goal, is fearless, is without craving, is passionless, has cut the thorns of life; this is his final body.

352. He who is without craving and grasping, he who is skilled in etymology and terms, he who knows the grouping of letters and their sequence, it is he who is called the bearer of the final body, one of profound wisdom, a great man.

353. All have I overcome, all do I know; from all am I detached, all have I renounced; wholly absorbed am I in the "Destruction of Craving". Having comprehended all by myself whom shall I call my teacher.

354. The gift of Truth excels all gifts; the flavour of Truth excels all flavours; the pleasure in Truth excels all pleasures; he who has destroyed craving overcomes all sorrow.

355. Riches ruin the foolish, but not those in quest of the Beyond (Nibbăna); through craving for riches, the foolish one ruins himself as (if he were ruining) others.

356. Weeds are the bane of fields, lust is the bane of this mankind; hence what is given to the lustless yields abundant fruit.

357. Weeds are the bane of fields, hatred is the bane of this mankind; hence what is given to those rid of hatred yields abundant fruit.

358. Weeds are the bane of fields, delusion is the bane of this mankind; hence what is given to those rid of delusion yields abundant fruit.

359. Weeds are the bane of fields, desire is the bane of this mankind; hence what is given to the desireless yields abundant fruit.