Upaddha Sutta (SN 45.2) translation question

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    • #38773

      Hello everyone! I am wondering if someone with knowledge of Pali could help resolve a question about a translation in this sutta.

      Here is a translation by Juan Mascaro, from the introduction to The Dhammapada (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1973), p.20.

      “It is told that once Ananda, the beloved disciple of Buddha, saluted his master and said: ‘Half the holy life, O master, is friendship with the beautiful, association with the beautiful, communion with the beautiful.’ ‘Say not so, Ananda, say not so!’ the master replied. ‘It is not half of the holy life. It is the whole of the holy life.’”

      I was surprised by this, because the more common translation is this:

      “As he was sitting there, Ven. Ananda said to the Blessed One, “This is half of the holy life, lord: admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie.”

      “Don’t say that, Ananda. Don’t say that. Admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie is actually the whole of the holy life. ” (“Upaḍḍha Sutta (SN 45.2)“)

      What is the correct translation: “friendship with the beautifuL, association with the beautiful, communion with the beautiful” or “admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie”?

      It seems that noun and adjective are reversed in these two versions. I don’t know Pali, so I am confused.

    • #38774


      You may read this post “The Sōtapanna Stage” with the explanation of kalyāṇa from the Upaḍḍha Sutta (SN 45.2).

      kalyāṇa” means to “help remove defilements,” and “mittatā” is a friendship; “sahāyatā” is companionship; and “sampavaṅkatā” is close association.

      kalyāṇamittatā means friendship that help remove defilements.
      kalyāṇasahāyatā means companionship that help remove defilements.
      kalyāṇasampavaṅkatā means close association that help remove defilements.

      With mettā, Seng Kiat

    • #38781

      Thanks, Seng Kiat, for the explanation.

      Here is another post that discusses that issue: “Four Conditions for Attaining Sōtapanna Magga/Phala

      The main points are the following:

      1. The “Ministry of the Buddha” or the “Buddha Sāsana” with the unique message of the Buddha will last only as long as there are Noble Persons (those who have attained magga phala, i.e., Sotapanna through Arahant) stages.
      – They have the special name “kalyāṇa mittā” of a “Noble friend.”

      2. Only a Buddha or a true disciple of the Buddha (who has grasped the teachings of the Buddha) can explain those teachings.
      – Once there is no longer any such kalyāṇa mittā on the Earth, Buddha Sāsana will disappear.
      – Then, the world will have to wait for the next Buddha, Buddha Maitreya, to be born to attain magga phala (Nibbana.) That is supposed to happen in a billion years or so.
      – The current Buddha Sāsana of Buddha Gotama is expected to disappear within the next 2000 years.

      P.S. That is why the Buddha told Ven. Ananda (in the Upaḍḍha Sutta (SN 45.2)) that the continuation of his Buddha Sāsana depends TOTALLY on kalyāṇa mittā.

    • #38842

      Thank you for your responses to my question!

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