The Book of the Eights
“Here, (1) a king’s excellent thoroughbred horse is well born on both sides, maternal and paternal; he is born in whatever area other excellent thoroughbred horses are born. (2) He respectfully eats whatever food they give him, whether moist or dry, without scattering it. (3) He is repelled by sitting down or lying down near feces or urine. (4) He is mild and pleasant to live with, and he does not agitate other horses. (5) He reveals his tricks, ploys, gambits, and wiles as they really are to his trainer so that his trainer can make an effort to stamp them out of him. (6) He carries loads, determined: ‘Whether or not the other horses carry loads, I myself will carry them.’ (7) When moving, he moves only along a straight path. (8) He is strong, and he shows his strength right up until the end of his life. Possessing these eight factors, a king’s excellent thoroughbred horse is worthy of a king, an accessory of a king, and reckoned as a factor of kingship.
(1) “Here, a bhikkhu is virtuous; he dwells restrained by the Pātimokkha, possessed of good conduct and resort, seeing danger in minute faults. Having undertaken the training rules, he trains in them. (2) He respectfully eats whatever food they give him, whether coarse or excellent, without being annoyed. (3) He is repelled by bodily, verbal, and mental misconduct; he is repelled by the acquisition of the numerous kinds of bad unwholesome qualities. (4) He is mild and pleasant to live with, and he does not agitate other bhikkhus. (5) He reveals his tricks, ploys, gambits, and wiles as they really are to the Teacher or to his wise fellow monks so that they can make an effort to stamp them out of him. (6) He is one who takes up the training, determined: ‘Whether or not other bhikkhus train, I will train.’ (7) When moving, he moves only along a straight path. In this connection, this is the straight path: right view … right concentration. (8) He has aroused energy thus: ‘Willingly, let only my skin, sinews, and bones remain, and let the flesh and blood dry up in my body, but I will not relax my energy so long as I have not attained what can be attained by manly strength, energy, and exertion.’ Possessing these eight qualities, a bhikkhu is worthy of gifts … an unsurpassed field of merit for the world.”