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Endurance and Equanimity

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Endurance & Equanimity

ENDURANCE
§ 1. “Vepacitti the asura-king recited this verse:
‘Fools would flare up even more
if there were no constraints.
Thus an enlightened one
should restrain the fool
with a heavy stick.’
“When Vepacitti had said this verse, the asuras applauded but the devas were
silent. So Vepacitti said to Sakka, ‘Say a verse, deva-king!’
“When this was said, Sakka the deva-king recited this verse:

‘This, I think,
is the only constraint for a fool:
When, knowing the other’s provoked,
you mindfully grow calm.’

“When Sakka had said this verse, the devas applauded but the asuras were
silent. So Sakka said to Vepacitti, ‘Say a verse, Vepacitti!’
“When this was said, Vepacitti recited this verse:
‘Vāsava, I see a fault
in this very forbearance:
When the fool thinks,
“He’s forbearing
out of fear of me,”
the idiot pursues you even more—
as a bull, someone who runs away.’
“When Vepacitti had said this verse, the asuras applauded but the devas were
silent. So Vepacitti said to Sakka, ‘Say a verse, deva-king!’
“When this was said, Sakka recited this verse:
‘It doesn’t matter
whether he thinks,

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“He’s forbearing
out of fear of me.”
One’s own true good
is the foremost good.
Nothing better
than patience
is found.
Whoever, when strong,
is forbearing
to one who is weak:
that’s the foremost patience.
The weak must constantly endure.
They call that strength
no strength at all:
whoever’s strength
is the strength of a fool.
There’s no reproach
for one who is strong,
guarding—guarded by—Dhamma.
You make things worse
when you flare up
at someone who’s angry.
Whoever doesn’t flare up
at someone who’s angry
wins a battle
hard to win.
You live for the good of both
—your own, the other’s—
when, knowing the other’s provoked,
you mindfully grow calm.
When you work the cure of both
—your own, the other’s—
those who think you a fool
know nothing of Dhamma.’” — SN 11:5

§ 2. I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was staying near
Rājagaha at the Maddakucchi Deer Reserve. Now, at that time his foot had been

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pierced by a stone sliver [after Devadatta had tried to kill him by rolling a
boulder down a hillside]. Excruciating were the bodily feelings that developed
within him—painful, fierce, sharp, wracking, repellent, disagreeable—but he
endured them mindful, alert, & unperturbed. Having had his outer robe folded
in four and laid out, he lay down on his right side in the lion’s posture—with one
foot placed on top of the other—mindful & alert.
Then Māra the Evil One went to the Blessed One and recited this verse in his
presence:

“Are you lying there in a stupor,
or drunk on poetry?
Are your goals so very few?
All alone in a secluded lodging,
what is this dreamer, this sleepy-face?”
The Buddha:
“I lie here,
not in a stupor,
nor drunk on poetry.
My goal attained,
I am sorrow-free.
All alone in a secluded lodging,
I lie down with sympathy
for all beings.
Even those pierced in the chest
with an arrow,
their hearts rapidly,
rapidly beating:
Even they with their arrows
are able to sleep.
So why shouldn’t I,
with my arrow removed?
I’m not awake with worry,
nor afraid to sleep.
Days & nights
don’t oppress me.
I see no threat of decline

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in any world at all.
That’s why I sleep
with sympathy
for all beings.”

Then Māra the Evil One—sad & dejected at realizing, “The Blessed One
knows me; the One Well-Gone knows me”—vanished right there. — SN 4:13
§ 3. “And how do you watch after yourself when watching after others?
Through endurance, through harmlessness, through a mind of goodwill, &
through sympathy.” — SN 47:19
§ 4. “Once, monks, in this same Sāvatthī, there was a lady of a household
named Vedehikā. This good report about Lady Vedehikā had circulated: ‘Lady
Vedehikā is gentle. Lady Vedehikā is even-tempered. Lady Vedehikā is calm.’
Now, Lady Vedehikā had a slave named Kālī who was diligent, deft, & neat in
her work. The thought occurred to Kālī the slave: ‘This good report about my
Lady Vedehikā has circulated: “Lady Vedehikā is even-tempered. Lady Vedehikā
is gentle. Lady Vedehikā is calm.” Now, is anger present in my lady without
showing, or is it absent? Or is it just because I’m diligent, deft, & neat in my
work that the anger present in my lady doesn’t show? Why don’t I test her?’
“So Kālī the slave got up after daybreak. Then Lady Vedehikā said to her:
‘Hey, Kālī!’
“‘Yes, madam?’
“‘Why did you get up after daybreak?’
“‘No reason, madam.’
“‘No reason, you wicked slave, and yet you get up after daybreak?’ Angered &
displeased, she scowled.
Then the thought occurred to Kālī the slave: ‘Anger is present in my lady
without showing, and not absent. And it’s just because I’m diligent, deft, & neat
in my work that the anger present in my lady doesn’t show. Why don’t I test her
some more?’
“So Kālī the slave got up later in the day. Then Lady Vedehikā said to her:
‘Hey, Kālī!’
“‘Yes, madam?’
“‘Why did you get up later in the day?’

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“‘No reason, madam.’
“‘No reason, you wicked slave, and yet you get up later in the day?’ Angered &
displeased, she grumbled.
Then the thought occurred to Kālī the slave: ‘Anger is present in my lady
without showing, and not absent. And it’s just because I’m diligent, deft, & neat
in my work that the anger present in my lady doesn’t show. Why don’t I test her
some more?’
“So Kālī the slave got up even later in the day. Then Lady Vedehikā said to
her: ‘Hey, Kālī!’
“‘Yes, madam?’
“‘Why did you get up even later in the day?’
“‘No reason, madam.’
“‘No reason, you wicked slave, and yet you get up even later in the day?’
Angered & displeased, she grabbed hold of a rolling pin and gave her a whack over
the head, cutting it open.
Then Kālī the slave, with blood streaming from her cut-open head, went and
denounced her mistress to the neighbors: ‘See, ladies, the gentle one’s handiwork?
See the even-tempered one’s handiwork? See the calm one’s handiwork? How
could she, angered & displeased with her only slave for getting up after daybreak,
grab hold of a rolling pin and give her a whack over the head, cutting it open?’
After that this evil report about Lady Vedehikā circulated: ‘Lady Vedehikā is
vicious. Lady Vedehikā is foul-tempered. Lady Vedehikā is violent.’

“In the same way, monks, a monk may be ever so gentle, ever so even-
tempered, ever so calm, as long as he is not touched by disagreeable aspects of

speech. But it is only when disagreeable aspects of speech touch him that he can
truly be known as gentle, even-tempered, & calm. I don’t call a monk easy to
admonish if he is easy to admonish and makes himself easy to admonish only by
reason of robes, almsfood, lodging, & medicinal requisites for curing the sick.
Why is that? Because if he doesn’t get robes, almsfood, lodging, & medicinal
requisites for curing the sick, then he isn’t easy to admonish and doesn’t make
himself easy to admonish. But if a monk is easy to admonish and makes himself
easy to admonish purely out of esteem for the Dhamma, respect for the
Dhamma, reverence for the Dhamma, then I call him easy to admonish. Thus,
monks, you should train yourselves: ‘We will be easy to admonish and make

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ourselves easy to admonish purely out of esteem for the Dhamma, respect for the
Dhamma, reverence for the Dhamma.’ That’s how you should train yourselves.
“Monks, there are these five aspects of speech by which others may address you:
timely or untimely, true or false, affectionate or harsh, beneficial or unbeneficial,
with a mind of goodwill or with inner hate. Others may address you in a timely
way or an untimely way. They may address you with what is true or what is false.
They may address you in an affectionate way or a harsh way. They may address
you in a beneficial way or an unbeneficial way. They may address you with a
mind of goodwill or with inner hate. In any event, you should train yourselves:
‘Our minds will be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain
sympathetic to that person’s welfare, with a mind of goodwill, and with no inner
hate. We will keep pervading him with an awareness imbued with goodwill and,
beginning with him, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an
awareness imbued with goodwill—abundant, expansive, immeasurable, free from
hostility, free from ill will.’ That’s how you should train yourselves.
“Suppose that a man were to come along carrying a hoe & a basket, saying, ‘I
will make this great earth be without earth.’ He would dig here & there, scatter
soil here & there, spit here & there, urinate here & there, saying, ‘Be without
earth. Be without earth.’ Now, what do you think—would he make this great
earth be without earth?”
“No, lord. Why is that? Because this great earth is deep & enormous. It can’t
easily be made to be without earth. The man would reap only a share of weariness
& disappointment.”
“In the same way, monks, there are these five aspects of speech by which others
may address you…. In any event, you should train yourselves: ‘Our minds will be
unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic to that
person’s welfare, with a mind of goodwill, and with no inner hate. We will keep
pervading him with an awareness imbued with goodwill and, beginning with
him, we will keep pervading the all-encompassing world with an awareness
imbued with goodwill equal to the great earth—abundant, expansive,
immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.’ That’s how you should train
yourselves….
“Monks, even if bandits were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a
two-handled saw, he among you who let his heart get angered even at that would
not be doing my bidding. Even then you should train yourselves: ‘Our minds will

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be unaffected and we will say no evil words. We will remain sympathetic, with a
mind of goodwill, and with no inner hate. We will keep pervading these people
with an awareness imbued with goodwill and, beginning with them, we will keep
pervading the entire world with an awareness imbued with goodwill—abundant,
expansive, immeasurable, free from hostility, free from ill will.’ That’s how you
should train yourselves.
“Monks, if you attend constantly to this admonition on the simile of the saw,
do you see any aspects of speech, slight or gross, that you could not endure?”
“No, lord.”
“Then attend constantly to this admonition on the simile of the saw. That
will be for your long-term welfare & happiness.” — MN 21
§ 5. “Rāhula, develop the meditation in tune with earth. For when you are
developing the meditation in tune with earth, agreeable & disagreeable sensory
impressions that have arisen will not stay in charge of your mind. Just as when
people throw what is clean or unclean on the earth—feces, urine, saliva, pus, or
blood—the earth is not horrified, humiliated, or disgusted by it; in the same way,
when you are developing the meditation in tune with earth, agreeable &
disagreeable sensory impressions that have arisen will not stay in charge of your
mind.” — MN 62
§ 6. “And what is the earth property? The earth property may be either
internal or external. What is the internal earth property? Whatever internal,
within oneself, is hard, solid, & sustained (by craving): head hairs, body hairs,
nails, teeth, skin, flesh, tendons, bones, bone marrow, kidneys, heart, liver, pleura,
spleen, lungs, large intestines, small intestines, contents of the stomach, feces, or
whatever else internal, within oneself, is hard, solid, & sustained: This is called the
internal earth property. Now both the internal earth property and the external
earth property are simply earth property. And that should be seen as it has come
to be with right discernment: ‘This is not mine, this is not what I am, this is not
my self.’ When one sees it thus as it has come to be with right discernment, one
becomes disenchanted with the earth property and makes the mind dispassionate
toward the earth property.
“Now there comes a time, friends, when the external liquid property is
provoked [in a flood], and at that time the external earth property vanishes. So
when even in the external earth property—so vast—inconstancy will be discerned,
destructibility will be discerned, a tendency to decay will be discerned,

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changeability will be discerned, then what of this short-lasting body, sustained by
clinging, is ‘I’ or ‘mine’ or ‘what I am’? It has here only a ‘no.’
“Now if other people insult, malign, exasperate, & harass a monk (who has
discerned this), he discerns that ’A painful feeling, born of ear-contact, has arisen
within me. And that is dependent, not independent. Dependent on what?
Dependent on contact.’ And he sees that contact is inconstant, feeling is
inconstant, perception is inconstant, consciousness is inconstant. His mind, with
the (earth) property as its object/support, leaps up, grows confident, steadfast, &
released.
“And if other people attack the monk in ways that are undesirable,
displeasing, & disagreeable—through contact with fists, contact with stones,
contact with sticks, or contact with knives—the monk discerns that ‘This body is
of such a nature that contacts with fists come, contacts with stones come,
contacts with sticks come, & contacts with knives come. Now the Blessed One has
said, in his exhortation of the simile of the saw [MN 21], “Monks, even if bandits
were to carve you up savagely, limb by limb, with a two-handled saw, he among
you who let his heart get angered even at that would not be doing my bidding.”
So my persistence will be aroused & untiring, my mindfulness established &
unconfused, my body calm & unaroused, my mind centered & unified. And now
let contact with fists come to this body, let contact with stones, with sticks, with
knives come to this body, for this is how the Buddha’s bidding is done.’
“And if, in the monk recollecting the Buddha, Dhamma, & Saṅgha in this
way, equanimity based on what is skillful is not established, he feels apprehensive
at that and gives rise to a sense of urgency: ‘It is a loss for me, not a gain; ill-gotten
for me, not well-gotten, that when I recollect the Buddha, Dhamma, & Saṅgha in
this way, equanimity based on what is skillful is not established within me.’ Just
as when a daughter-in-law, on seeing her father-in-law, feels apprehensive and
gives rise to a sense of urgency (to please him), in the same way, if, in the monk
recollecting the Buddha, Dhamma, & Saṅgha in this way, equanimity based on
what is skillful is not established, he feels apprehensive at that and gives rise to a
sense of urgency: ‘It is a loss for me, not a gain; ill-gotten for me, not well-gotten,
that when I recollect the Buddha, Dhamma, & Saṅgha in this way, equanimity
based on what is skillful is not established within me.’
“But if, in the monk recollecting the Buddha, Dhamma, & Saṅgha in this
way, equanimity based on what is skillful is established, then he is gratified at
that. And even to this extent, friends, the monk has accomplished a great deal.”
— MN 28

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§ 7. “And what are the effluents to be abandoned by tolerating? There is the
case where a monk, reflecting appropriately, endures. He tolerates cold, heat,
hunger, & thirst; the touch of flies, mosquitoes, wind, sun, & reptiles; ill-spoken,
unwelcome words & bodily feelings that, when they arise, are painful, racking,
sharp, piercing, disagreeable, displeasing, & menacing to life. The effluents,
vexation, or fever that would arise if he were not to tolerate these things do not
arise for him when he tolerates them. These are called the effluents to be
abandoned by tolerating.
“And what are the effluents to be abandoned by avoiding? There is the case
where a monk, reflecting appropriately, avoids a wild elephant, a wild horse, a
wild bull, a wild dog, a snake, a stump, a bramble patch, a chasm, a cliff, a
cesspool, an open sewer. Reflecting appropriately, he avoids sitting in the sorts of
unsuitable seats, wandering to the sorts of unsuitable habitats, and associating
with the sorts of bad friends that would make his knowledgeable friends in the
holy life suspect him of evil conduct. The effluents, vexation, or fever that would
arise if he were not to avoid these things do not arise for him when he avoids
them. These are called the effluents to be abandoned by avoiding.
“And what are the effluents to be abandoned by destroying? There is the case
where a monk, reflecting appropriately, does not tolerate an arisen thought of
sensuality. He abandons it, destroys it, dispels it, & wipes it out of existence.
“Reflecting appropriately, he does not tolerate an arisen thought of ill will…
an arisen thought of harmfulness…
“Reflecting appropriately, he does not tolerate arisen evil, unskillful mental
qualities. He abandons them, destroys them, dispels them, & wipes them out of
existence. The effluents, vexation, or fever that would arise if he were not to
destroy these things do not arise for him when he destroys them. These are called
the effluents to be abandoned by destroying.” — MN 2
§ 8. “These seven things—pleasing to an enemy, bringing about an enemy’s
aim—come to a man or woman who is angry. Which seven?
“There is the case where an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person be
ugly!’ Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an enemy’s good looks. Now,
when a person is angry—overcome with anger, oppressed with anger—then even
though that he may be well-bathed, well-anointed, dressed in white clothes, his
hair & beard neatly trimmed, he is ugly nevertheless, all because he is overcome

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with anger. This is the first thing pleasing to an enemy, bringing about an
enemy’s aim, that comes to a man or woman who is angry.
“And further, an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person sleep badly!’
Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an enemy’s restful sleep. Now, when a
person is angry—overcome with anger, oppressed with anger—then even though
he sleeps on a bed spread with a white blanket, spread with a woolen coverlet,
spread with a flower-embroidered bedspread, covered with a rug of deerskins,
with a canopy overhead, or on a sofa with red cushions at either end, he sleeps
badly nevertheless, all because he is overcome with anger. This is the second thing
pleasing to an enemy, bringing about an enemy’s aim, that comes to a man or
woman who is angry.
“And further, an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person not profit!’
Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an enemy’s profits. Now, when a
person is angry—overcome with anger, oppressed with anger—then even when he
suffers a loss, he thinks, ‘I’ve gained a profit’; and even when he gains a profit, he
thinks, ‘I’ve suffered a loss.’ When he has grabbed hold of these ideas that work in
mutual opposition (to the truth), they lead to his long-term suffering & loss, all
because he is overcome with anger. This is the third thing pleasing to an enemy,
bringing about an enemy’s aim, that comes to a man or woman who is angry.
“And further, an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person not have any
wealth!’ Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an enemy’s wealth. Now,
when a person is angry—overcome with anger, oppressed with anger—then
whatever his wealth, earned through his efforts & enterprise, amassed through the
strength of his arm, and piled up through the sweat of his brow—righteous
wealth righteously gained—the king orders it sent to the royal treasury [in
payment of fines levied for his behavior] all because he is overcome with anger.
This is the fourth thing pleasing to an enemy, bringing about an enemy’s aim,
that comes to a man or woman who is angry.
“And further, an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person not have any
reputation!’ Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an enemy’s reputation.
Now, when a person is angry—overcome with anger, oppressed with anger—
whatever reputation he has gained from being heedful, it falls away, all because he
is overcome with anger. This is the fifth thing pleasing to an enemy, bringing
about an enemy’s aim, that comes to a man or woman who is angry.

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“And further, an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person not have any
friends!’ Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an enemy’s having friends.
Now, when a person is angry—overcome with anger, oppressed with anger—his
friends, companions, & relatives will avoid him from afar, all because he is
overcome with anger. This is the sixth thing pleasing to an enemy, bringing
about an enemy’s aim, that comes to a man or woman who is angry.
“And further, an enemy wishes of an enemy, ‘O, may this person, on the
break-up of the body, after death, reappear in a plane of deprivation, a bad
destination, a lower realm, hell!’ Why is that? An enemy is not pleased with an
enemy’s going to heaven. Now, when a person is angry—overcome with anger,
oppressed with anger—he engages in misconduct with the body, misconduct with
speech, misconduct with the mind. Having engaged in misconduct with the body,
misconduct with speech, misconduct with the mind, then—on the break-up of
the body, after death—he reappears in a plane of deprivation, a bad destination,
a lower realm, hell, all because he was overcome with anger. This is the seventh
thing pleasing to an enemy, bringing about an enemy’s aim, that comes to a man
or woman who is angry.
“These are the seven things—pleasing to an enemy, bringing about an enemy’s
aim—that come to a man or woman who is angry.” — AN 7:60
§ 9. “There are these five ways of subduing hatred by which, when hatred arises
in a monk, he should wipe it out completely. Which five?
“When you give birth to hatred for an individual, you should develop
goodwill for that individual… you should develop compassion for that
individual… you should develop equanimity toward that individual… you should
pay him no mind & pay him no attention… you should direct your thoughts to
the fact of his being the product of his actions: ‘This venerable one is the doer of
his actions, heir of his actions, born of his actions, related by his actions, and has
his actions as his arbitrator. Whatever action he does, for good or for evil, to
that will he fall heir.’ Thus the hatred for that individual should be subdued.” —
AN 5:161
§ 10. “Now as for a person who is impure in his bodily behavior but pure in
his verbal behavior, how should one subdue hatred for him? Just as when a monk
who makes use of things that are thrown away sees a rag in the road: Taking hold

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of it with his left foot and spreading it out with his right, he would tear off the
sound part and go off with it. In the same way, when the individual is impure in
his bodily behavior but pure in his verbal behavior, one should at that time pay
no attention to the impurity of his bodily behavior, and instead pay attention to
the purity of his verbal behavior. Thus the hatred for him should be subdued.
“And as for a person who is impure in his verbal behavior, but pure in his
bodily behavior, how should one subdue hatred for him? Just as when there is a
pool overgrown with slime & water plants, and a person comes along, burning
with heat, covered with sweat, exhausted, trembling, & thirsty. He would jump
into the pool, part the slime & water plants with both hands, and then, cupping
his hands, drink the water and go on his way. In the same way, when the
individual is impure in his verbal behavior but pure in his bodily behavior, one
should at that time pay no attention to the impurity of his verbal behavior, and
instead pay attention to the purity of his bodily behavior. Thus the hatred for
him should be subdued.
“And as for a person who is impure in his bodily behavior & verbal behavior,
but who periodically experiences mental clarity & calm, how should one subdue
hatred for him? Just as when there is a little puddle in a cow’s footprint, and a
person comes along, burning with heat, covered with sweat, exhausted, trembling,
& thirsty. The thought would occur to him, ‘Here is this little puddle in a cow’s
footprint. If I tried to drink the water using my hand or cup, I would disturb it,
stir it up, & make it unfit to drink. What if I were to get down on all fours and
slurp it up like a cow, and then go on my way?’ So he would get down on all
fours, slurp up the water like a cow, and then go on his way. In the same way,
when an individual is impure in his bodily behavior & verbal behavior, but
periodically experiences mental clarity & calm, one should at that time pay no
attention to the impurity of his bodily behavior…the impurity of his verbal
behavior, and instead pay attention to the fact that he periodically experiences
mental clarity & calm. Thus the hatred for him should be subdued.
“And as for a person who is impure in his bodily behavior & verbal behavior,
and who does not periodically experience mental clarity & calm, how should one
subdue hatred for him? Just as when there is a sick man—in pain, seriously ill—
traveling along a road, far from the next village & far from the last, unable to get
the food he needs, unable to get the medicine he needs, unable to get a suitable
assistant, unable to get anyone to take him to human habitation. Now suppose

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another person were to see him coming along the road. He would do what he
could out of compassion, pity, & sympathy for the man, thinking, ‘O that this
man should get the food he needs, the medicine he needs, a suitable assistant,
someone to take him to human habitation. Why is that? So that he won’t fall
into ruin right here.’ In the same way, when a person is impure in his bodily
behavior & verbal behavior, and who does not periodically experience mental
clarity & calm, one should do what one can out of compassion, pity, & sympathy
for him, thinking, ‘O that this man should abandon wrong bodily conduct and
develop right bodily conduct, abandon wrong verbal conduct and develop right
verbal conduct, abandon wrong mental conduct and develop right mental
conduct. Why is that? So that, on the break-up of the body, after death, he won’t
fall into the plane of deprivation, the bad destination, the lower realms,
purgatory.’ Thus the hatred for him should be subdued.
“And as for a person who is pure in his bodily behavior & verbal behavior,
and who periodically experiences mental clarity & calm, how should one subdue
hatred for him? Just as when there is a pool of clear water—sweet, cool, & limpid,
with gently sloping banks, & shaded on all sides by trees of many kinds—and a
person comes along, burning with heat, covered with sweat, exhausted, trembling,
& thirsty. Having plunged into the pool, having bathed & drunk & come back
out, he would sit down or lie down right there in the shade of the trees. In the
same way, when an individual is pure in his bodily behavior & verbal behavior,
and periodically experiences mental clarity & calm, one should at that time pay
attention to the purity of his bodily behavior…the purity of his verbal behavior,
and to the fact that he periodically experiences mental clarity & calm. Thus the
hatred for him should be subdued. An entirely inspiring individual can make the
mind grow serene.
“These are five ways of subduing hatred by which, when hatred arises in a
monk, he should wipe it out completely.” — AN 5:162
EQUANIMITY
§ 11. “Now, what is worldly equanimity? There are these five strings of
sensuality. Which five? Forms cognizable via the eye—agreeable, pleasing,
charming, endearing, enticing, linked with sensual desire; sounds cognizable via
the ear… aromas cognizable via the nose… flavors cognizable via the tongue…
tactile sensations cognizable via the body—agreeable, pleasing, charming,

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endearing, enticing, linked with sensual desire. Any equanimity arising in
dependence on these five strings of sensuality is called worldly equanimity.
“And what is unworldly equanimity? There is the case where, with the
abandoning of pleasure & pain—as with the earlier disappearance of elation &
distress—one enters & remains in the fourth jhāna: purity of equanimity &
mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. This is called unworldly equanimity.”
“And what is the even more unworldly unworldly equanimity? Any
equanimity that arises in one effluent-free while he/she is reflecting on his/her
mind that is released from greed, released from aversion, released from delusion:
This is called an even more unworldly unworldly equanimity.” — SN 36:31
§ 12. “Just as if a goldsmith or goldsmith’s apprentice were to set up a smelter.
Having set up the smelter, he would fire the receptacle. Having fired the
receptacle, he would take hold of some gold with his tongs and place it in the
receptacle. Periodically he would blow on it, periodically sprinkle it with water,
periodically examine it closely. If he were solely to blow on it, it’s possible that the
gold would burn up. If he were solely to sprinkle it with water, it’s possible that
the gold would grow cold. If he were solely to examine it closely, it’s possible that
the gold would not come to full perfection. But when he periodically blows on it,
periodically sprinkles it with water, periodically examines it closely, the gold
becomes pliant, malleable, & luminous. It is not brittle, and is ready to be
worked. Then whatever sort of ornament he has in mind—whether a belt, an
earring, a necklace, or a gold chain—the gold would serve his purpose.
“In the same way, a monk intent on heightened mind should attend
periodically to three themes: He should attend periodically to the theme of
concentration; he should attend periodically to the theme of uplifted energy; he
should attend periodically to the theme of equanimity. If the monk intent on
heightened mind were to attend solely to the theme of concentration, it’s possible
that his mind would tend to laziness. If he were to attend solely to the theme of
uplifted energy, it’s possible that his mind would tend to restlessness. If he were to
attend solely to the theme of equanimity, it’s possible that his mind would not be
rightly concentrated for the ending of the effluents. But when he attends
periodically to the theme of concentration, attends periodically to the theme of
uplifted energy, attends periodically to the theme of equanimity, his mind is

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pliant, malleable, luminous, and not brittle. It is rightly concentrated for the
ending of the effluents.” — AN 3:103
§ 13. “There is equanimity coming from multiplicity, dependent on
multiplicity; and there is equanimity coming from singleness, dependent on
singleness.
“And what is equanimity coming from multiplicity, dependent on
multiplicity? There is equanimity with regard to forms, equanimity with regard
to sounds… smells… tastes… tactile sensations & ideas. This is equanimity coming
from multiplicity, dependent on multiplicity.
“And what is equanimity coming from singleness, dependent on singleness?
There is equanimity dependent on the dimension of the infinitude of space,
equanimity dependent on the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness…
dependent on the dimension of nothingness… dependent on the dimension of
neither perception nor non-perception. This is equanimity coming from
singleness, dependent on singleness.
“By depending & relying on equanimity coming from singleness, dependent
on singleness, abandon & transcend equanimity coming from multiplicity,
dependent on multiplicity. Such is its abandoning, such its transcending.
“By depending & relying on non-fashioning [atammayatā], abandon &
transcend the equanimity coming from singleness, dependent on singleness. Such
is its abandoning, such its transcending.” — MN 137
§ 14. Ven. Ānanda said to the Blessed One: “There is the case, lord, where a
monk, having practiced in this way—‘It should not be, it should not occur to me;
it will not be, it will not occur to me. What is, what has come to be, that I
abandon’—obtains equanimity. Now, would this monk be totally unbound, or
not?”
“A certain such monk might, Ānanda, and another might not.’
“What is the cause, what is the reason, lord, whereby one might and another
might not?”
“There is the case, Ānanda, where a monk, having practiced in this way—
(thinking) ‘It should not be, it should not occur to me; it will not be, it will not
occur to me. What is, what has come to be, that I abandon’—obtains
equanimity. He relishes that equanimity, welcomes it, remains fastened to it. As

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he relishes that equanimity, welcomes it, remains fastened to it, his consciousness
is dependent on it, is sustained by it [clings to it]. With clinging/sustenance,
Ānanda, a monk is not totally unbound.”
“Being sustained, lord, where is that monk sustained?”
“The dimension of neither perception nor non-perception.”
“Then, indeed, being sustained, he is sustained by the supreme sustenance.”
“Being sustained, Ānanda, he is sustained by the supreme sustenance; for
this—the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception—is the supreme
sustenance. There is (however) the case where a monk, having practiced in this
way—‘It should not be, it should not occur to me; it will not be, it will not occur
to me. What is, what has come to be, that I abandon’—obtains equanimity. He
does not relish that equanimity, does not welcome it, does not remain fastened to
it. As does not relish that equanimity, does not welcome it, does not remain
fastened to it, his consciousness is not dependent on it, is not sustained by it [does
not cling to it]. Without clinging/sustenance, Ānanda, a monk is totally
unbound.”
“It’s amazing, lord. It’s astounding. For truly, the Blessed One has declared to
us the way to cross over the flood by going from one support to the next. But
what is the noble liberation?”
“There is the case, Ānanda, where a disciple of the noble ones considers this:
‘Sensuality here & now; sensuality in lives to come; sensual perceptions here &
now; sensual perceptions in lives to come; forms here & now; forms in lives to
come; form-perceptions here & now; form-perceptions in lives to come;
perceptions of the imperturbable; perceptions of the dimension of nothingness;
perceptions of the dimension of neither perception nor non-perception: That is
an identity, to the extent that there is an identity. This is deathless: the liberation
of the mind through lack of clinging/sustenance.’” — MN 106
§ 15. To purify the heart, we have to disentangle our attachments to self, to
the body, to mental phenomena, and to all the objects that come passing in
through the senses. Keep the mind intent on concentration. Keep it one at all
times. Don’t let it become two, three, four, five, etc., because once you’ve made
the mind one, it’s easy to make it zero. Simply cut off the little ‘head’ and pull the
two ends together. But if you let the mind become many, it’s a long, difficult job
to make it zero.

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And another thing: If you put the zero after other numbers, they become ten,
twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, hundreds, thousands, on to infinity. But if you put
the zeros first, even if you have ten thousand of them, they don’t count. So it is
with the heart: Once we’ve turned it from one to zero and put the zero first, then
other people can praise or criticize us as they like but it won’t count. Good
doesn’t count, bad doesn’t count. This is something that can’t be written, can’t
be read, that we can understand only for ourselves. — Phra Ajaan Lee: Inner
Strength