Ja 279 Satapattajātaka
The Story about the Woodpecker

In the present the group of six monks try to prevent others from correcting them in matters of Dhamma and Vinaya. The Buddha tells a story of a youth who collected a thousand pieces of money, and mistaking friends for foes, and foes for friends came into a forest full of thieves.

⏑−−⏑¦⏑−−−¦¦−−−⏑¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
1. Yathā māṇavako panthe siṅgāliṁ vanagocariṁ,
As the young brahmin on the path thinks the jackal who ranged the woods,

−⏑−−¦⏑−−−¦¦⏑−⏑−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
Atthakāmaṁ pavedentiṁ, anatthakāmā ti maññati,
Declaring she desired his good, was one who desired to harm him,

⏑−⏑−−¦⏑⏑−−¦¦−⏑−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka savipulā
Anatthakāmaṁ satapattaṁ, atthakāmo ti maññati.
(So) he thinks the woodpecker, who desired harm, one who desired good.

[There is no word commentary to this verse.]

−⏑−⏑¦⏑−−−¦¦−⏑−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
2. Evam-eva idhekacco puggalo hoti tādiso,
So does a certain person here, who is of such a kind,

⏑−⏑⏑¦⏑−−−¦¦⏑−−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
Hitehi vacanaṁ vutto, paṭiggaṇhāti vāmato.
When a beneficial word is spoken, take it in the opposite sense.

−⏑−−¦⏑−−−¦¦⏑−−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
3. Ye ca kho naṁ pasaṁsanti, bhayā ukkaṁsayanti vā,
Those who do praise him, or exalt him out of fear,

−⏑−−¦⏑−−−¦¦⏑⏑−−¦⏑−⏑− Siloka pathyā
Tañ-hi so maññate mittaṁ satapattaṁ va māṇavo ti.
He thinks is a friend, as the young brahmin thinks of the woodpecker.

Tattha, {2.390} hitehī ti hitaṁ vuḍḍhiṁ icchamānehi.
In this connection, beneficial means having the desire for his benefit and development.

Vacanaṁ vutto ti hitasukhāvahaṁ ovādānusāsanaṁ vutto.
When a (beneficial) word is spoken means when a word of instruction and advice is spoken bringing happiness and benefits.

Paṭiggaṇhāti vāmato ti ovādaṁ agaṇhanto:
Takes it in the opposite sense means not accepting this advice:

“Ayaṁ me na atthāvaho hoti, anatthāvaho me ayan”-ti,
“This does not bring good to me, this brings harm,”

gaṇhanto vāmato paṭiggaṇhāti nāma.
grasping at the opposite he certainly takes it.

Ye ca kho nan-ti,
Those who (do praise) him,

ye ca kho taṁ attano gāhaṁ gahetvā, ṭhitapuggalaṁ:
that person who stands firm, grasping hold of his own view,

“Adhikaraṇaṁ gahetvā ṭhitehi nāma,
they praise, saying: “Having grasped the point firmly,

tumhādisehi bhavitabban”-ti vaṇṇenti.
they should be like you.”

Bhayā ukkaṁsayanti vā ti,
Or exalt him out of fear,

imassa gāhassa vissaṭṭhapaccayā
through clearly depending on this view

tumhākaṁ idañ-cidañ-ca bhayaṁ uppajjissati,
fear of this and that will arise for you,

mā vissajjayittha,
do not dismiss him,

na ete bāhusaccakulaparivārādīhi tumhe sampāpuṇantī ti
these do not provide you with deep learning, having a family retinue, and so on,

evaṁ vissajjanapaccayā bhayaṁ dassetvā ukkhipanti.
so because of being released, showing fear, they exalt (him).

Tañ-hi so maññate mittan-ti,
He thinks is a friend,

ye evarūpā honti, tesu yaṁkiñci,
those who are such, amongst all of them,

so ekacco bālapuggalo attano bālatāya mittaṁ maññati,
a certain foolish person in his foolishness thinks he is a friend,

“Ayaṁ me atthakāmo mitto” ti maññati.
thinking: “This is my friend who desires my good.”

Satapattaṁ va māṇavo ti,
As the young brahmin thinks of the woodpecker,

yathā anatthakāmañ-ñeva satapattaṁ so māṇavo attano bālatāya:
just as the young brahmin in his foolishness (considered) the woodpecker, who desired his harm,

“Atthakāmo me” ti maññati,
think: “He desires my good,”

paṇḍito pana evarūpaṁ anuppiyabhāṇī mitto ti agahetvā,
but a wise one, not grasping at such a friend who speaks flattery,

dūrato va naṁ vivajjeti.
avoids him from afar.

Tena vuttaṁ:
Therefore this is said: DN 31 vs 14.

Aññadatthuharo mitto, yo ca mitto vacīparo,
The friend who only takes away, the friend who speaks about others,

Anuppiyañ-ca yo āha, apāyesu ca yo sakhā.
The one who speaks flattery, the one who’s a friend to the fallen.

Ete amitte cattāro, iti viññāya paṇḍito,
These four are not our friends, understanding in this way, the wise one,

Ārakā parivajjeyya, maggaṁ paṭibhayaṁ yathā ti.
Should avoid them from afar, as (one avoids) a dangerous path.