07.3 Upacālā Therī (189-195)


189. Possessed of mindfulness, possessed of vision, a bhikkhunī with developed faculties, I pierced the peaceful state, which is not cultivated by evil men.

190. “Why do you not approve of birth? Anyone who is born enjoys sensual pleasures. Enjoy the delights of sensual pleasures; do not repent afterwards.”

191. For anyone who is born there is death, the cutting-off of hands and feet, slaughter, bonds, and calamity. Anyone who is born goes to pain.

192. The unconquered awakened one was born in the Sakya clan. He taught me the doctrine, the complete overcoming of birth:

193. pain, the uprising of pain, and the overcoming of pain, and the noble eightfold way leading to the stilling of pain.

194. I heard his utterance, and I dwelt delighting in his teaching. I have obtained the three knowledges. I have done the Buddha’s teaching.

195. Everywhere the enjoyment of pleasure is defeated; the mass of darkness [of ignorance] is tom asunder; in this way know, evil one, you are defeated, death.


I left home soon after my sister.

She found a cave, I a community.

Typical middle sister—

always the social one.

The voice inside my head always used to ask,

Why do I have to be the middle sister?

Never first. Never last.

When is it my turn to feel special?

These are our stories.




I thought the Path would make me feel special.

But instead it sang

such deep rich tones

that the voice inside my head

just couldn’t help

but sing along.

If you’re going to tell yourself a story,

why not tell yourself a story of freedom?


Leave a comment