Ja 189 Sīhacammajātaka
The Story about the Lion’s Skin

In the present Kokālika wanted to be one of those who recited the scriptures, and was invited to do so, but when he appeared in front of the Saṅgha he could not remember one verse. The Buddha tells a story of a merchant who used to throw a lion-skin over his donkey before putting him out to graze. But when confronted by villagers he revealed his true nature by braying, and was beaten to death.

−−−−¦⏑⏑⏑−¦¦−−−⏑¦⏑−⏑− Siloka navipulā
1. Netaṁ sīhassa naditaṁ, na byagghassa na dīpino,
This is not a lion’s sound, nor is it a tiger’s or leopard’s,

−⏑−−¦⏑−−−¦¦−−⏑⏑¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
Pāruto sīhacammena, jammo nadati gadrabho ti.
But wrapped with a lion’s skin, a contemptible donkey cries out.

Tattha, {2.110} jammo ti lāmako.
In this connection, contemptible means inferior.

Gāmavāsino pi tassa gadrabhabhāvaṁ ñatvā,
Those who dwell in the village, knowing his donkey-nature,

taṁ aṭṭhīni bhañjantā pothetvā, sīhacammaṁ ādāya agamaṁsu.
having beaten him, and broken his bones, took the lion’s skin and left.

⏑−⏑−¦−,−−−¦¦−⏑−⏑¦⏑−⏑− Siloka mavipulā
2. Ciram-pi kho taṁ khādeyya gadrabho haritaṁ yavaṁ,
For a long time the donkey may have eaten grass and barley,

−⏑−−¦⏑−−−¦¦⏑⏑−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
Pāruto sīhacammena, ravamāno va dūsayī ti.
While covered with a lionskin, (but) he spoiled it all by braying.

Tattha, tan-ti nipātamattaṁ.
In this connection, taṁ is merely a particle.

Ayaṁ gadrabho attano gadrabhabhāvaṁ ajānāpetvā,
This donkey, without making known his own donkey’s nature,

sīhacammena pāruto ciram-pi kālaṁ haritaṁ yavaṁ khādeyyā, ti attho.
while covered with a lionskin, may have eaten grass and barley for a long time, this is the meaning.

Ravamāno va dūsayī ti,
He spoiled it all by braying,

attano pana gadrabharavaṁ ravamāno vesa attānaṁ dūsayi,
braying his own donkey bray he spoiled it for himself,

natthettha sīhacammassa doso ti.
regarding this, it is not the fault of the lion’s skin.