Back to BuddhaSutra.com

Gotami Sutta

Sister Gotami

For free distribution only, as a gift of Dhamma

At Savatthi: Then, early in the morning, Kisa Gotami 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 concentration, approached her and addressed her in verse:

"Why,
with your sons killed,
do you sit all alone,
your face in tears?
All alone,
immersed in the midst of the forest,
are you looking
for a man?"

Then the thought occurred to Kisa Gotami 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 concentration."

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

"I've gotten past
the killing of sons,
have made that the end
to my search for men.
I don't grieve,
I don't weep --
and I'm not afraid of you,
my friend.
It's everywhere destroyed -- delight.
The mass of darkness is shattered.
Having defeated the army of death,
free
of fermentations
I dwell."

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

Back to BuddhaSutra.com