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Dhammapada XIX

The Judge

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To pass judgment hurriedly
doesn't mean you're a judge.
The wise one, weighing both
the right judgment & wrong,
judges others impartially --
unhurriedly, in line with the Dhamma,
    guarding the Dhamma,
    guarded by Dhamma,
he's called a judge.


Simply talking a lot
doesn't mean one is wise.
Whoever's secure --
    no     hostility,
        fear --
is said to be wise.

Simply talking a lot
doesn't maintain the Dhamma.
-- although he's heard next to nothing --
    sees Dhamma through his body,
    is not heedless of Dhamma:
he's one who maintains the Dhamma.


A head of gray hairs
doesn't mean one's an elder.
Advanced in years,
one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is
    truth, restraint,
    rectitude, gentleness,
    self-control --
he's called an elder,
    his impurities disgorged,


Not by suave conversation
or lotus-like coloring
does an envious, miserly cheat
become an exemplary man.
But one in whom this is
    cut     through
    up-     rooted
    wiped out --
he's called exemplary,
    his aversion disgorged,


A shaven head
doesn't mean a contemplative.
The liar observing no duties,
filled with greed & desire:
what kind of contemplative's he?

But whoever tunes out
the dissonance
of his evil qualities
-- large or small --
in every way
by bringing evil to consonance:
    he's called a contemplative.


Begging from others
doesn't mean one's a monk.
As long as one follows
householders' ways,
one is no monk at all.

But whoever puts aside
both merit & evil and,
living the chaste life,
goes through the world:
    he's called a monk.


Not by silence
does someone confused
    & unknowing
turn into a sage.
But whoever -- wise,
as if holding the scales,
    taking the excellent --
    rejects evil deeds:
he is a sage,
that's how he's a sage.
Whoever can weigh
both sides of the world:
    that's how he's called
    a sage.


Not by harming life
does one become noble.
One is termed     noble
    for being     gentle
to all living things.


on account of
    your precepts & practices,
    great erudition,
    concentration attainments,
    secluded dwelling,
    or the thought, 'I touch
    the renunciate ease
    that run-of-the-mill people
    don't know':
ever let yourself get complacent
    when the ending of effluents
    is still unattained.
Source: ATI - For Free Distribution Only, as a Gift of Dhamma.

Dhamma Essay:
Giving Dignity to Life by Bhikkhu Bodhi

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