September 07, 2007

It Was, Then It Wasn't

I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Savatthi in Jeta's grove, Anathapindika's monastery. Now at that time the Blessed One sat reflecting on the various evil, unskillful qualities that had been abandoned [in him] and on the various skillful qualities that had gone to the culmination of their development. Then as he realized the various evil, unskillful qualities that had been abandoned [in him] and the various skillful qualities that had gone to the culmination of their development, he on that occasion exclaimed:

Before, it was, then it wasn't.
Before, it wasn't, then it was.
It wasn't, won't be
& now isn't to be found.

[Udana (Exclamations) VI.3, from Handful of Leaves 4, An Anthology from the Khuddaka Nikaya, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu, © 2003]

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