SN 3.13
PTS: S i 81
CDB i 176
Do.napaaka Sutta: A Heavy Meal
translated from the Pali by
Maurice O'Connell Walshe
Alternate translation: Olendzki
The Pali title of this sutta is based on the PTS (Feer) edition.

The King Pasenadi of Kosala dined off a tubful of rice.[1] Then the King, replete and puffing, went to see the Blessed One, saluted him and sat down to one side. And the Blessed One, observing how he was replete and puffing, at once uttered this verse:

Those who always dwell in mindfulness, Observing measure in the food they eat, Find that their discomfort[2] grows the less. Aging gently, life for them is long.

Now just then Prince Sudassana was standing behind the king. And the king said to him:

"Come, my dear Sudassana, learn this verse from the Blessed One and recite it to me when you bring me my dinner, and I will arrange for you to be paid a daily allowance of a hundred pence[3] in perpetuity."

"Very well, Your Majesty," said Sudassana [and did as he was told.]

After that the king made it a rule to eat no more than a quarter of a tubful of rice.[4] Thus it came about that on a later occasion King Pasenadi, his body in good shape, stroked his healthy limbs and fervently exclaimed: "Truly the Blessed One has doubly shown compassion for my welfare, both in this life and in the life to come!"


Do.napaaka: a tub (as measure of capacity). The same story is told in greater detail in DhpA.
Vedanaa: "feeling," here obviously "unpleasant bodily feeling."
3. the square copper coinage of the time.
One naa.lika (one-fourth of a was the standard amount offered to one bhikkhu. Being meant to last all day, it was probably a substantial amount.