Good Words To Live By

Jizo Bodhisatva memorial for Kanto Earthquake

This wasn’t a planned post, but something that came to mind just now and I wanted to share. This is from a Buddhist text called the Dhammapada, which is a collection of the words of Shakyamuni Buddha. I’ve posted Japanese and Korean translations, which I found online, for reference. In Japanese and Korean, the Dhammapada is called:

* Japanese: 法句経, hokkugyō or ダンマパダ, danmapada.
* Korean: 法句經 or 법구경 beopgugyeong or 단마파다 danmapada.

English:

1. Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with an impure mind a person speaks or acts suffering follows him like the wheel that follows the foot of the ox.

2. Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with a pure mind a person speaks or acts happiness follows him like his never-departing shadow.

3. “He abused me, he struck me, he overpowered me, he robbed me.” Those who harbor such thoughts do not still their hatred.

4. “He abused me, he struck me, he overpowered me, he robbed me.” Those who do not harbor such thoughts still their hatred.

5. Hatred is never appeased by hatred in this world. By non-hatred alone is hatred appeased. This is a law eternal.

6. There are those who do not realize that one day we all must die. But those who do realize this settle their quarrels.

(full translation here)

日本語:

1、ものごとは心にもとづき、心を主とし、心によってつくり出される。
もしも、汚れた心で話したり行ったりするならば、苦しみはその人に付き従う。――車をひく(牛)の足跡に車輪がついてゆくように。

2、ものごとは心にもとづき、心を主とし、心によってつくり出される。
もしも清らかな心で話したり行ったりするならば、福楽はその人に付き従う――影がそのからだから離れないように。

3、「彼はわれを罵った。彼はわれを害した。彼はわれにうち勝った。彼はわれから強奪した。」という思いを抱く人には、怨みはついに息むことがない。

4、「彼はわれを罵った。彼はわれを害した。彼はわれにうち勝った。彼はわれから強奪した。」という思いを抱かない人には、ついに怨みが息む。

5、実にこの世においては、怨みに報いるに怨みを以てしたならば、ついに怨みの息むことがない。怨みを捨ててこそ息む。これは永遠の真理である。

6、「われらは、ここにあって死ぬはずのものである。」と覚悟をしよう。――このことわりを他の人々は知ってはいない。しかし、このことわりを知る人々があれば、争いはしずまる。

한국어:

1) 모든 것은 마음이 다스리고, 마음에서 나와 마음으로 이루어 진다. 나쁜 마음을 가지고 말하거나 행하면 괴로움이 따르리니, 마치 소와 말 걸음에 수레바퀴가 따르듯이.

2) 모든 것은 마음이 다스리고 마음에서 나와 마음으로 이루진다. 깨끗한 마음을 가지고 말하거나 행하면 즐거움이 따르리니, 마치 그림자가 그 모양을 따르듯이.

3) ‘나를 욕했다. 나를 때렸다. 나를 이겼다. 내것을 훔쳤다.’ 이러한 생각을 품은 이에겐 원한이 가라앉지 않으리라.

4) ‘나를 욕했다. 나를 때렸다. 나를 이겼다. 내것을 훔쳤다.’ 이러한 생각을 품지 않은 이에겐, 원한이 가라앉으리라.

5) 이 세상에서 품은 원한은 원한으로 갚는다고 풀어지지 않으리니 원한을 버릴 때에만 풀리리라. 이것은 영원히 변치않는 진리이다.

6) ‘우리는 이세상에서 죽어야 할 존재다.’ 고 깨닫지 못하는 이가 있다. 사람이 만일 이것을 깨달으면 모든 싸움이 사라지리라.

Namo Shakyamuni Buddha
南無釈迦如来
나무석가여래

P.S. I might go back and edit this later in order to add more languages. 🙂

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Author: Doug

A fellow who dwells upon the Pale Blue Dot who spends his days obsessing over things like Buddhism, KPop music, foreign languages, BSD UNIX and science fiction.

3 thoughts on “Good Words To Live By”

  1. The Dhammapada was my introduction to Buddhist texts. I suppose that isn’t unusual, as it is relatively light reading compared to many other texts while containing some immensely profound statements. The thing I find so odd is I still choose to pick it up and read it on breaks at work, partially due to it’s brevity, but also because it’s contents never fail to inspire me.

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