Part 2: Process of Life

For name and clan are assigned as mere means of communication in the world, designations set down on occasion by those unknowing, whose wrong views have remained buried in their hearts since time of old. The ignorant repeatedly state that one is a brahmin by birth.

One is not a brahmin by birth, nor by birth a non-brahmin. By action (kamma) is one a brahmin, by action is one a non-brahmin. By their acts and occupations are men farmers, craftsmen, merchants, servants, thieves, soldiers … and kings.

This is how the wise see action as it really is, seers of Dependent Origination, skilled in action and its results. Action makes the world go round; action makes this generation of beings wander on. Living beings are bound by action like the chariot wheel by the pin.

Samaññā hesā lokasmiṁ, nāmagottaṁ pakappitaṁ;
Sammuccā samudāgataṁ, tattha tattha pakappitaṁ.

Dīgharattānusayitaṁ, diṭṭhigatamajānataṁ;
Ajānantā no pabrunti, jātiyā hoti brāhmaṇo.

Na jaccā brāhmaṇo hoti, na jaccā hoti abrāhmaṇo;
Kammunā brāhmaṇo hoti, kammunā hoti abrāhmaṇo.

Kassako kammunā hoti, sippiko hoti kammunā;
Vāṇijo kammunā hoti, pessako hoti kammunā.

Coropi kammunā hoti, yodhājīvopi kammunā;
Yājako kammunā hoti, rājāpi hoti kammunā.

Evametaṁ yathābhūtaṁ, kammaṁ passanti paṇḍitā;
Paṭiccasamuppādadassā, kammavipākakovidā.

Kammunā vattati loko, kammunā vattati pajā;
Kammanibandhanā sattā, rathassāṇīva yāyato.

M. II. 196.