Just as a fine thoroughbred,
Yoked to a carriage, endures the load,
Oppressed by the heavy burden,
And yet doesn’t try to escape the yoke;
So too, those who are as filled with understanding
As the ocean is with water,
Don’t look down on others;
This is the noble Dhamma regarding living beings.
People who fall under the dominion of time,
Under the dominion of being reborn in one state of existence after another,
And those young men grieve in this life.
Elated by anything happy,
Downcast by anything suffering:
These both destroy the fool,
Who doesn’t see in accordance with reality.
But those who in suffering and in happiness,
And in the middle have overcome the weaver;
They stand like a royal pillar,
Neither elated nor downcast.
Not to gain or loss,
Not to fame or reputation,
Not to criticism or praise,
Not to suffering or happiness—
The wise cling to nothing,
Like a droplet on a lotus-leaf.
They are happy everywhere,
And unconquered everywhere.
There’s principled loss,
And there’s unprincipled gain.
Principled loss is better
Than unprincipled gain.
There’s the fame of the unintelligent,
And there’s the disrepute of the discerning.
Disrepute of the discerning is better
Than the fame of the unintelligent.
There’s praise by fools,
And there’s criticism by the discerning.
Criticism by the discerning is better
Than praise by fools.
There’s the happiness of sensual pleasures,
And there’s the suffering of seclusion.
The suffering of seclusion is better
Than the happiness of sensual pleasures.
There’s life without principles,
And there’s death with principles.
Death with principles is better
Than life without principles.
Those who have abandoned sensual pleasures and anger,
Their minds at peace regarding being reborn in one state of existence or another,
They wander in the world unattached,
For them nothing is beloved or unloved.
Having developed the factors of awakening,
The spiritual faculties, and the powers,
I’ve attained ultimate peace:
Nibbāna without defilements.