Saṃyutta Nikāya 35

Connected Discourses on the Six Sense Bases

94. Untamed, Unguarded

At Savatthi. “Bhikkhus, these six bases for contact—if untamed, unguarded, unprotected, unrestrained—are bringers of suffering. What six?

“The eye, bhikkhus, as a base for contact—if untamed, unguarded, unprotected, unrestrained—is a bringer of suffering. The ear as a base for contact … The mind as a base for contact … is a bringer of suffering. These six bases for contact—if untamed, unguarded, unprotected, unrestrained—are bringers of suffering.

“Bhikkhus, these six bases for contact—if well tamed, well guarded, well protected, well restrained—are bringers of happiness. What six?

“The eye, bhikkhus, as a base for contact—if well tamed, well guarded, well protected, well restrained—is a bringer of happiness. The ear as a base for contact … The mind as a base for contact … is a bringer of happiness. These six bases for contact—if well tamed, well guarded, well protected, well restrained—are bringers of happiness.”

This is what the Blessed One said. Having said this, the Fortunate One, the Teacher, further said this:

“Just six, O bhikkhus, are the bases for contact,
Where one unrestrained meets with suffering.
Those who know how to restrain them
Dwell uncorrupted, with faith their partner.

“Having seen forms that delight the mind
And having seen those that give no delight,
Dispel the path of lust towards the delightful
And do not soil the mind by thinking,
The other is displeasing to me.’

“Having heard sounds both pleasant and raucous,
Do not be enthralled with pleasant sound.
Dispel the course of hate towards the raucous,
And do not soil the mind by thinking,
This one is displeasing to me.’

“Having smelt a fragrant, delightful scent,
And having smelt a putrid stench,
Dispel aversion towards the stench
And do not yield to desire for the lovely.

“Having enjoyed a sweet delicious taste,
And having sometimes tasted what is bitter,
Do not greedily enjoy the sweet taste,
Do not feel aversion towards the bitter.

“When touched by pleasant contact do not be enthralled,
Do not tremble when touched by pain.
Look evenly on both the pleasant and painful,
Not drawn or repelled by anything.

“When common people of proliferated perception
Perceive and proliferate they become engaged.
Having dispelled every mind-state bound to the home life,
One travels on the road of renunciation.

“When the mind is thus well developed in six,
If touched, one’s mind never flutters anywhere.
Having vanquished both lust and hate, O bhikkhus,
Go to the far shore beyond birth and death!”