The Saint

The Dhammapada

Passages for Meditation

They have completed their voyage; they have gone beyond sorrow. The fetters of life have fallen from them, and they live in full freedom.

The thoughtful strive always. They have no fixed abode, but leave home like swans from their lake.

Like the flight of birds in the sky, the path of the selfless is hard to follow. They have no possessions, but live on alms in a world of freedom. Like the flight of birds in the sky, their path is hard to follow. With their senses under control, temperate in eating, they know the meaning of freedom.

Even the gods envy the saints, whose senses obey them like well-trained horses and who are free from pride. Patient like the earth, they stand like a threshold. They are pure like a lake without mud, and free from the cycle of birth and death.

Wisdom has stilled their minds, and their thoughts, words, and deeds are filled with peace. Freed from illusion and from personal ties, they have renounced the world of appearance to find reality. Thus have they reached the highest.

They make holy wherever they dwell, in village or forest, on land or at sea. With their senses at peace and minds full of joy, they make the forests holy.

The Dhammapada is an ancient popular collection of the Buddha’s teachings in verse form. This passage has been translated by Easwaran for meditation and is published in his spiritual anthologies, “God Makes the Rivers to Flow” and “Timeless Wisdom.” The audio recording is by Eknath Easwaran’s wife, Christine Easwaran.