SN.3.10. Bandhanasutta ("Shackles")

Saṁyutta Nikāya ("The Linked Discourses")

Now at that time a large group of people had been put in shackles by King Pasenadi of Kosala—some in ropes, some in manacles, some in chains.

Then several mendicants robed up in the morning and, taking their bowls and robes, entered Sāvatthī for alms. Then, after the meal, when they returned from alms-round, they went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and told him what was happening.

Then, knowing the meaning of this, on that occasion the Buddha recited these verses:

“The wise say that shackle is not strong
that’s made of iron, wood, or knots.
But obsession with jeweled earrings,
concern for your partners and children:

this, say the wise, is a strong shackle,
which drags down the slack, so hard to escape.
Having cut this one too they go forth,
unconcerned, having given up sensual pleasures.”

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