Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Coming to the end of days in Kathmandu, packing, throwing away, saying goodbye, I found experience reflected in this selection of a 3rd century sutra.

All things conditioned are unstable, impermanent,
Fragile in essence, as an unbaked pot,
Like something borrowed, or a city founded on sand,
They last a short while only.

They are inevitably destroyed,
Like plaster washed off in the rains,
Like the sandy bank of a river -
They are conditioned, and their true nature is frail.

They are like the flame of a lamp,
Which rises suddenly and as soon goes out.
They have no power of endurance, like the wind
Or like foam, unsubstantial, essentially feeble.

The sage knows the beginning and end
Of consciousness, its production and passing away -
The sage knows that it came from nowhere and returns to nowhere,
And is empty of reality, like a conjuring trick,

The sage knows what is true reality,
And sees all conditioned things as empty and powerless.

Lalitavistara Sutra
trans AL Basham


1 comment:

  1. I dont know why I felt sad at your posting but going home after spending so long in a place always feels like losing something.