The Dhammapada – Translated by Thomas Byrom
6. The Wise Man
The wise man tells you
Where you have fallen
And where you yet may fall – Invaluable secrets!
Follow him, follow the way.
Let him chasten and teach you
And keep you from mischief.
The world may hate him.
But good men love him.
Do not look for bad company
Or live with men who do not care.
Find friends who love the truth.
Live in serenity and joy.
The wise man delights in the truth
And follows the law of the awakened.
The farmer channels water to his land.
The fletcher whittles his arrows.
And the carpenter turns his wood.
So the wise man directs his mind.
The wind cannot shake a mountain.
Neither praise nor blame moves the wise man.
He is clarity.
Hearing the truth,
He is like a lake,
Pure and tranquil and deep.
Where there is desire,
Happiness or sorrow –
Whatever befalls you,
Do not ask for family or power or wealth,
Either for yourself or for another.
Can a wise man wish to rise unjustly?
Few cross over the river.
Most are stranded on this side.
On the riverbank they run up and down.
But the wise man, following the way,
Crosses over, beyond the reach of death.
He leaves the dark way
For the way of light.
He leaves his home, seeking
Happiness on the hard road.
Free from desire,
Free from possessions,
Free from the dark places of the heart.
Free from attachment and appetite,
Following the seven lights of awakening,
And rejoicing greatly in his freedom,
In this world the wise man
Becomes himself a light,
Pure, shining, free.