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Ajaniya Sutta

The Thoroughbred

Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.
For free distribution only.

"Endowed with three characteristics, a king's excellent thoroughbred steed is worthy of a king, the wealth of a king, and counts as one of the king's own limbs. Which three? There is the case where a king's excellent thoroughbred steed is consummate in beauty, consummate in strength, and consummate in speed. Endowed with these three characteristics is a king's excellent thoroughbred steed worthy of a king, the wealth of a king, and counts as one of the king's own limbs.

"In the same way, a monk endowed with these three qualities is worthy of gifts, worthy of hospitality, worthy of offerings, worthy of respect, an unexcelled field of merit for the world. Which three? There is the case where a monk is consummate in beauty, consummate in strength, and consummate in speed.

"And how is a monk consummate in beauty? There is the case where a monk is virtuous. He dwells restrained in accordance with the Patimokkha, consummate in his behavior & sphere of activity. He trains himself, having undertaken the training rules, seeing danger in the slightest fault. This is how a monk is consummate in beauty.

"And how is a monk consummate in strength? There is the case where a monk keeps his persistence aroused for abandoning unskillful mental qualities and taking on skillful mental qualities. He is steadfast, solid in his effort, not shirking his duties with regard to skillful mental qualities. This is how a monk is consummate in strength.

"And how is a monk consummate in speed? There is the case where a monk discerns as it actually is present that 'This is stress.' He discerns as it actually is present that 'This is the origination of stress.' He discerns as it actually is present that 'This is the cessation of stress.' He discerns as it actually is present that 'This is the path of practice leading to the cessation of stress.' This is how a monk is consummate in speed.

"Endowed with these three qualities is a monk worthy of gifts, worthy of hospitality, worthy of offerings, worthy of respect, an unexcelled field of merit for the world."

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