《南傳法句經》第100

 

故事為鄙人摘譯自 K. Sri Dhammananda 長老主編的英文版 The Dhammapada,添枝減葉若干。

 

  《法句經》第100偈的主角是湯巴達提科(Tambadāṭhika),他原本是個小偷,後來金盆洗手,當上國王的御用劊子手,一做就是五十五年,才剛退休。某日,湯巴達提科在家裡特別準備妥米粥,便前往河邊洗澡,盤算回家後再好好祭祭五臟廟。他返家後,正欲享用時,尊者舍利弗恰巧從禪定中出來,站在他的門口乞食。湯巴達提科一見舍利弗,心念一動,思忖:「我一輩子都在處決竊賊,現在,我應該把米粥供養這位長老。」就算是積點兒福德也罷,於是他邀請舍利弗進門,畢恭畢敬獻上食物。

  飯後,舍利弗按照傳統,向施主開示法義。但湯巴達提科腦海一直想著自己以前的劊子手生涯,極為不安,根本定不下心凝神聽講。舍利弗了然於胸,為了幫助湯巴達提科安定心神,便善巧提問,他處決竊賊是出於自身的瞋恨、或純粹是依令執刑?湯巴達提科答說,他是遵照國王的命令行事,自己完全沒有殺人的瞋念或意願。「若是那樣,你何罪之有?」湯巴達提科在舍利弗的殷殷保證下,疑慮盡消,心境轉為平和,於是請長老繼續開示。當他專心聆聽時,心念寂靜,幾近須陀洹(Sotāpatti)的境界,旋即證得隨順智(Anuloma Ñāṇa)。之後,他陪舍利弗走了一段路,再轉身返家。不幸的是,尚未踏進家門,路上竟被一頭(據傳是惡魔所化的)母牛牴撞而死。

  當天晚上,佛陀來到比丘們的聚會時,眾人報告湯巴達提科死亡一事兒,並問世尊,湯巴達提科往生何處?佛陀答說,儘管湯巴達提科生平犯下殺人惡行,但因證悟了法,他往生至兜率天(Tusita devaloka)。比丘們可納悶啦,何以如此一個作惡之人只聽了一次法,竟然就獲得這般莫大好處?佛陀說,訓誨長短無關緊要,只要合於義理,縱使只有一語,正確了知後,也能產生無比利益。接著,誦出此偈。

 

 

 

[巴利原文與英譯取自 Nārada 長老編譯的 The Dhammapada

 

100 One Useful Sentence Is Better Than A Thousand Useless Words

 

Sahassam api ce vācā

Anatthapadasaṃhitā

Ekaṃ atthapadaṃ seyyo

Yaṃ sutvā upasammati

 

 

Better than a thousand utterances, comprising useless words, is one single beneficial word, by hearing which one is pacified.

 

 

 

[中譯取自法增比丘的《南傳法句經新譯》]

 

徒誦千句言,無義理之語,

不如一益語,聞已得寂靜。

 

 

NOTES 

註釋主要依據: A Dictionary of the Pali Language, by R. C. Childers;

Pali-English Dictionary, by T. W. Rhys Davids and W. Stede

 

Sahassaṃ: (num) a thousand

Api, pi: (part.) also; even; though; merely

Ce: (adv) even, if

Vācā: (f) word, saying, speech, utterance

Attha, aṭṭha, aṭṭa: (m) advantage, good, welfare; property, wealth; meaning, sense, significance

Anattha: (adj) foolish, vain

        (m) disadvantage, evil, misfortune, injury

Pada: (n) a word, a sentence, a line of a stanza, a part, a foot, footprint, step, track, site, place, abode, path, cause

Saṃhita: (pp. of sandahati; [=sahita]) fitted, equipped with, endowed with, possessed of

Sandahati, sandheti: to connect, get ready, arrange, comprise

Eka: (adj) one, single; alone; a certain; the same; chief; unique

Seyya: (adj) better, excellent     (m/n/f nom.) seyyo

Yo: (pron) who, what, which; he who, whoever     acc. yaṃ

Suṇāti, suṇoti: to hear     ger. sutvā    pp. suta    pfp. sotabba

Upasammati: to grow calm, pacify, cease, be settled

 

 

 

 

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