The Downward Course
Source: Sacred Books Of The East
He who says what is not goes to hell; he also who, having done a thing,
says I have not done it. After death both are equal: they are men with
evil deeds in the next world.
Many men whose shoulders are covered with the yellow gown are
ill-conditioned and unrestrained; such evil-doers by their evil deeds go
Better it would be to swallow a heated iron ball, like flaring fire,
than that a bad unrestrained fellow should live on the charity of the
Four things does a reckless man gain who covets his neighbor's
wife--demerit, an uncomfortable bed, thirdly, punishment, and lastly,
There is demerit, and the evil way to hell: there is the short pleasure
of the frightened in the arms of the frightened, and the king imposes
heavy punishment; therefore let no man think of his neighbor's wife.
As a grass-blade, if badly grasped, cuts the arm, badly-practised
asceticism leads to hell.
An act carelessly performed, a broken vow, and hesitating obedience to
discipline (Brahma-kariyam), all these bring no great reward.
If anything is to be done, let a man do it, let him attack it
vigorously! A careless pilgrim only scatters the dust of his passions
An evil deed is better left undone, for a man repents of it afterwards;
a good deed is better done, for having done it, one does not repent.
Like a well-guarded frontier fort, with defences within and without, so
let a man guard himself. Not a moment should escape, for they who allow
the right moment to pass, suffer pain when they are in hell.
They who are ashamed of what they ought not to be ashamed of, and are
not ashamed of what they ought to be ashamed of, such men, embracing
false doctrines, enter the evil path.
They who fear when they ought not to fear, and fear not when they ought
to fear, such men, embracing false doctrines, enter the evil path.
They who see sin where there is no sin, and see no sin where there is
sin, such men, embracing false doctrines, enter the evil path.
They who see sin where there is sin, and no sin where there is no sin,
such men, embracing the true doctrine, enter the good path.
Next: The Elephant