Ja 38 Bakajātaka
The Story about the Crane

In the present one monk, who was good at tailoring, deceived his fellow monks with his work, and made a good profit, until he himself was deceived in return. When this is told to the Buddha he tells a story of a crane who deceived the fish and ate them all up, until a crab deceived him and nipped his head off.

−−−⏑¦⏑−−−¦¦⏑−−⏑¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
1. Nāccantaṁ nikatippañño nikatyā sukham-edhati,
The clever cheat cannot attain final happiness through cheating,

−−−⏑¦⏑⏑−−−¦¦⏑−−⏑¦⏑−⏑− Siloka mavipulā
Ārādheti nikatippañño, bako kakkaṭakā-m-ivā ti.
The clever cheat gets a (like) return, just like the crane with the crab.

Tattha, {1.223} nāccantaṁ nikatippañño, nikatyā sukham-edhatī ti,
In this connection, the clever cheat cannot attain final happiness through cheating,

nikati vuccati vañcanā.
cheating is said to be deceiving.

Nikatippañño vañcanapañño, puggalo tāya nikatyā nikatiyā, {1.224}
One who is wise in cheating, wise in deceiving, that person who cheats you and cheats you,

vañcanāya na accantaṁ sukham-edhati.
through deceiving cannot be finally happy.

Niccakāle sukhasmiṁ yeva patiṭṭhātuṁ na sakkoti,
He is not able to be established in happiness constantly,

ekaṁsena pana vināsaṁ pāpuṇāti yevā, ti attho.
but he certainly attains (his own) ruin, this is the meaning.

Ārādhetī ti paṭilabhati.
Gets a (like) return means receives back.

Nikatippañño ti kerāṭikabhāvaṁ sikkhitapañño pāpapuggalo,
The clever cheat means the bad person cleverly trained in dishonesty,

attanā katassa pāpassa, phalaṁ ārādheti paṭilabhati vindatī, ti attho.
for his own bad deeds, is found to receive back, get a (like) fruit in return, this is the meaning.


Bako kakkaṭakām-iva,
Just like the crane with the crab,

yathā bako kakkaṭakā gīvacchedaṁ pāpuṇāti,
just as the crab gained the cutting of the crane’s neck,

evaṁ pāpapuggalo, attanā katapāpato,
so the bad person, from his own bad deed,

diṭṭhadhamme vā samparāye vā, bhayaṁ ārādheti paṭilabhatī ti.
in this life or in the next life gets back, gets in return, (something) fearful.

Imam-atthaṁ pakāsento Mahāsatto vanaṁ unnādento Dhammaṁ desesi.
The Great Being making this known made the Dhamma teaching resound in the forest.