Dhammapada Verse 393
Na jatahi na gottena
na jacca hoti brahmano
yamhi saccanca1 dhammo2 ca
so suci so ca brahmano.
Verse 393: Not by wearing matted hair, nor by
lineage, nor by caste, does one become a brahmana; only he who realizes the
Truth and the Dhamma is pure; he is a brahmana.
1. sacca: the Four Noble Truths.
2. dhamma : the nine Transcendentals, viz., the
four Maggas, the four Phalas and Nibbana.
The Story of Jatila, the Brahmin
While residing at the Jetavana
monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (393) of this book, with reference to Jatila,
a brahmin ascetic who wore matted hair.
Once, a brahmin ascetic thought
to himself that the Buddha called his disciples 'brahmanas' and that he being a
brahmin by birth should also be called a 'brahmana'. Thinking thus, he went to
see the Buddha and put forward his view. But the Buddha rejected his view and
said, "O brahmin, I do not call one a brahmana because he keeps his hair
matted or simply because of his birth; I call one a brahmana only if he fully
comprehends the Four Noble Truths."
Then the Buddha spoke in verse as
|Verse 393: Not by
wearing matted hair, nor by lineage, nor by caste, does one become a
brahmana; only he who realizes the Truth and the Dhamma is pure; he is