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Navakammika Sutta: The Builder

Navakammika Sutta

Summary: What useful work can one possibly accomplish by sitting in meditation under a tree in the forest.

SN 7.17 PTS: S i 179 CDB i 274

Navakammika Sutta: The Builder

translated from the Pali by

Thanissaro Bhikkhu

On one occasion the Blessed One was staying among the Kosalans in a certain forest thicket. Now at that time the brahman Navakammika(1) Bharadvaja was getting some work done in that forest thicket. He saw the Blessed One sitting under a sala tree — his legs folded crosswise, his body held erect, with mindfulness set to the fore. On seeing him, the thought occurred to the brahman: “Here I am, taking delight in getting work done in this forest thicket. But what does this contemplative take delight in getting done?”

So he went to the Blessed One and on arrival recited this verse:

“What jobs are getting done, monk in the sala forest? Alone in the wilderness, in what does Gotama find delight?” [The Buddha:]

I have no work to do in the forest. The forest of restless dancing about

I've cut
at the root.

Though in the forest, I'm


I delight alone,

discontent cast away.

When this was said, the brahman Navakammika Bharadvaja said to the Blessed One: “Magnificent, Master Gotama! Magnificent! Just as if he were to place upright what was overturned, to reveal what was hidden, to point out the way to one who was lost, or to carry a lamp into the dark so that those with eyes could see forms, in the same way has Master Gotama — through many lines of reasoning — made the Dhamma clear. I go to Master Gotama for refuge, to the Dhamma, & to the community of monks. May Master Gotama remember me as a lay follower who has gone for refuge from this day forward, for life.”



= “Builder.”

See also: Sn 1.4; Thig 13.2.

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en/tipitaka/sut/sn/sn07/sn07.017.than.txt · Last modified: 2022/03/24 13:47 by Johann