12. In Praise of Skill

124 Through your skill in teaching the rough became gentle,
the mean became generous and the cruel became kind.

125 A Nanda became serene, a Manastabdha humble,
an Angulimala compassionate.
Who would not be amazed?[32]

126 Delighted with the flavor of your teaching,
many wise ones left their beds of gold
to sleep on beds of straw.

127 Because you knew time and temperaments,
sometimes you remained silent when questioned,
sometimes you spoke first, and at other times you aroused
their interest and then spoke.

128 Having first scrubbed clean the garment of the mind
with talk on generosity and other virtues,
you then applied the dye of the Dharma.

129 There is no expedient or opportunity
which you did not use
in order to rescue this pitiful world
from the fearful abyss of samsara.

130 To train people in different situations,
according to their state of mind,
many and various were the words and deeds you used.

131 They were pure and friendly, honored and praised,
saluted and acclaimed by both gods and men.

132 Difficult it is to speak well and then do good.
But for you, O Truthful One, both these things come easily.

133 By your purity alone you could have cleansed the whole universe.
In the triple world no one is to be found like you.

134 You rose up for the welfare of all beings
lost in the beginningless and fearful straits of becoming.