BWV 015: Merits follow one to the Next World

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SN 1.3.20 Dutiya-aputtakasuttaṁ
Merits follow one to the Next World

A rich merchant dies after living like a pauper. The Buddha explains that in a previous life he had given alms to a Paccekabuddha, and so in this life he became rich; however, he regreted it later, so he couldn’t enjoy it.

50. Dhaññaṁ dhanaṁ rajataṁ jātarūpaṁ,
Pariggahañ-cāpi yad-atthi kiñci,
Dāsā kammakarā pessā, ye cassa anujīvino.
Sabbaṁ n’ ādāya gantabbaṁ, sabbaṁ nikkhippagāminaṁ.

Grain, corn, silver, gold, other possessions,
Slaves, servants, messengers and dependents.
He cannot take anything when he dies,
He goes leaving his possessions behind.

51. Yañ-ca karoti kāyena, vācāya udacetasā,
Tañ-hi tassa sakaṁ hoti, tañ-ca ādāya gacchati,
Tañ-cassa anugaṁ hoti, chāyā va anapāyinī.

But what he does by body, word and mind,
That’s truly his own, he takes that along,
That follows him along, like a shadow.

52. Tasmā kareyya kalyāṇaṁ, nicayaṁ samparāyikaṁ,
Puññāni paralokasmiṁ patiṭṭhā honti pāṇinaṁ.

Therefore he should do whatever is good,
Gathering up merit for the next world,
In the next world merit supports beings.

from Buddhist Wisdom Verses


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