Gatha Sentence Translation Sentence Structure
Vocabulary&Grammar Commentary Pronunciation
                          List of Abbreviations

sibca bhikkhu imaj navaj sitta te lahum essati

chetva ragaj ca dosaj ca tato nibbanam ehisi

(DhP 369)

Sentence Translation:

Empty this boat, monk! Empty it will travel quickly.
Having cut off passion and hatred, you will approach the Nirvana.

Sentence Structure:
List of Abbreviations

sibca        bhikkhu   imaj   navaj    sitta          te     lahum  essati
|                    |            |            |            |             |          |          |
V.act.         N.m.    Pron.f.    N.f.     Adj.f.    Pron.m. Adv.   V.act.
2.Sg.imp.  Voc.Sg. Acc.Sg. Acc.Sg. Nom.Sg. Gen.Sg.     |    3.Sg.fut.
|                    |            |_______|           |              |          |______|
|___________|___________|                 |              |_________|
         |______|                                     |_____________|

List of Abbreviations

chetva  ragaj    ca   dosaj    ca   tato nibbanam    ehisi
|               |          |         |         |       |          |              |
V.ger.   N.m.   conj.   N.m.  conj. Adv.   N.n.       V.act.
|          Acc.Sg.    |    Acc.Sg.    |       |    Acc.Sg.   2.Sg.fut.
|               |_____|          |_____|       |          |________|
|                    |___________|           |__________|
|_________________|                               |

Vocabulary and Grammar:
List of Abbreviations

sibca, V.: empty. The verb root is sic-. The usual meaning of this verb is "to sprinkle", "to make wet". In connection with boats it means "empty the boat of water". 2.Sg.act.imp. = sibca.

bhikkhu: bhikkhu-, N.m.: a (Buddhist) monk. Voc.Sg. = bhikkhu.

imaj: idaj-, Pron.: this. Acc.Sg.f. = imaj.

navaj: nava-, N.f.: boat, ship. Acc.Sg. = navaj.

sitta: sitta-, Adj.: emptied. It is a p.p. of the verb root sic- (to make wet, but here "to empty"; see above under sibca). Nom.Sg.f. = sitta.

te: tvaj-, Pron.: you. Gen.Sg. = te.

lahum, Adv.: quickly. It is derived from the word lahu-, Adj.: light, quick.

essati, V.: will go. The verb root is i- (to go). 3.Sg.act.fut. = essati.

List of Abbreviations

chetva, V.ger.: having destroyed, having cut off. The verb root is chid- (to cut off).

ragaj: raga-, N.m.: passion, lust. It is derived from the verb raj- (to color). Acc.Sg. = ragaj.

ca, conj.: and.

dosaj: dosa-, N.m.: ill-will, hatred, anger. Acc.Sg. = dosaj.

ca, conj.: and.

tato, Adv.: from that, than that.

nibbanam: nibbana-, N.n.: Nirvana, the goal of Buddhism. Acc.Sg. = nibbanam.

ehisi, V.: [you will] go to, approach. The verb root is i- (to go). 2.Sg.act.fut. = ehisi.

List of Abbreviations

    This verse consists of three syntactically separate sentences. They are:
    1) sibca bhikkhu imaj navaj (empty this boat, monk). The subject is the noun bhikkhu (monk, vocative singular). The verb is sibca (empty, 2nd person, singular, active, imperative). The object is the noun navaj (boat, accusative singular). It has an attribute, the pronoun imaj (this, accusative singular).
    2) sitta te lahum essati (empty it will travel quickly for you). The subject is the past participle sitta (empty, nominative singular). The verb is essati (will go, 3rd person, singular, active, future). It has two attributes, the adverb lahum (quickly) and the pronoun te (for you, genitive singular).
    3) chetva ragaj ca dosaj ca tato nibbanam ehisi (having cut off passion and hatred, you will approach the Nirvana). This can be further analysed into two parts:
    a) chetva ragaj ca dosaj ca (having cut off passion and hatred). The subject is omitted. The verb is in gerund, chetva (having cut off). There are two objects, ragaj (passion, accusative singular) and dosaj (hatred, accusative singular). They are connected by two conjunctions ca (and).
    b) tato nibbanam ehisi (because of that you will approach the Nirvana). The subject is omitted; the verb implies the second person singular pronoun. The verb is ehisi (you will go, 2nd person, singular, active, future). The object is the noun nibbanaj (to the Nirvana, accusative singular). The adverb tato (from that, because of that) connects the sentence to the previous one.


    The story for this verse is identical with the one for the previous verse (DhP 368) and for the seven following verses (DhP 370 - DhP 376).
    Our striving for the peace of mind, the Nirvana, is often compared with crossing a river. If our boat (our mind) is filled with water (passion and hatred) it is extremely hard or almost impossible to cross to the other shore. We have to empty the boat of our mind of water (consisting mainly but not only of passion and hatred) to be able to make it to the other shore of Nirvana quickly and safely.

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