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Avalika Sutta

Sister Avalika

For free distribution only, as a gift of Dhamma

At Savatthi: Then, early in the morning, Avalika the nun put on her robes and, taking her bowl and outer robe, went into Savatthi for alms. When she had gone for alms in Savatthi and had returned from her alms round, after her meal she went to the Grove of the Blind to spend the day. Having gone deep into the Grove of the Blind, she sat down at the foot of a tree for the day's abiding.

Then Mara the Evil One, wanting to arouse fear, "horripilation," (sic) and terror in her, wanting to make her fall away from solitude, approached her and addressed her in verse:

"There's no
escape
in the world,
so what are you trying to do
with solitude?
Enjoy sensual delights.
Don't be someone
who later regrets."

Then the thought occurred to Avalika the nun: "Now who has recited this verse -- a human being or a non-human one?" Then it occurred to her: "This is Mara the Evil One, who has recited this verse wanting to arouse fear, "horripilation," and terror in me, wanting to make me fall away from solitude."

Then, having understood that "This is Mara the Evil One," she replied to him in verses:

"There is
an escape in the world,
well touched by me
with discernment --
something that you,
you Evil One,
kinsman of the heedless,
donít know.
Sensual pleasures
are like swords and spears,
the aggregates,
their executioner's block.
What you call sensual delight
is no delight for me."

Then Mara the Evil One -- sad and dejected at realizing, "Avalika the nun knows me" -- vanished right there.

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