AN 7.67 fortress, Thanissaro translation with pali, MA 3 excerpt, and doodle

an7-fortress

Table of Contents

Synopsis

AN 7.67 nagar’-opama

nagar-opama-suttaṃ (AN 7.67)
Fortress-simile-discourse (thai AN 7:63, thanisssaro trans.)
♦ 67. “yato kho, bhikkhave, rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ sattahi nagaraparikkhārehi suparikkhataṃ VAR hoti, catunnañca āhārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī. idaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ akaraṇīyaṃ bāhirehi paccatthikehi paccāmittehi.
“Monks, when a royal frontier fortress is well provided with the seven requisites of a fortress, and can obtain at will—without difficulty, without trouble—the four types of food, then it is said to be a royal frontier fortress that can’t be undone by external foes or duplicitous allies.
♦ “katamehi sattahi nagaraparikkhārehi suparikkhataṃ hoti?
“And with which seven requisites of a fortress is it well provided?

(7 requisites of fortress)

idha, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare esikā hoti gambhīranemā VAR sunikhātā acalā asampavedhī VAR. iminā paṭhamena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“There is the case where a royal frontier fortress has a foundation post—deeply rooted, well embedded, immovable, & unshakable. With this first requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare parikhā hoti gambhīrā ceva vitthatā ca. iminā dutiyena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“And further, the royal frontier fortress has a moat, both deep & wide. With this second requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare anupariyāyapatho hoti ucco ceva vitthato ca. iminā tatiyena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“And further, the royal frontier fortress has an encircling road, both high & wide. With this third requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ āvudhaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti salākañceva jevanikañca VAR. iminā catutthena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“And further, in the royal frontier fortress many weapons are stored, both arrows & things to be hurled. With this fourth requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahubalakāyo paṭivasati, seyyathidaṃ — hatthārohā assārohā rathikā dhanuggahā celakā calakā piṇḍadāyakā uggā rājaputtā pakkhandino mahānāgā sūrā cammayodhino dāsakaputtā. iminā pañcamena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“And further, the royal frontier fortress has a large army stationed within—elephant soldiers, cavalry, charioteers, bowmen, standard-bearers, billeting officers, soldiers of the supply corps, noted princes, commando heroes, infantry, & slaves. With this fifth requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare dovāriko hoti paṇḍito byatto medhāvī aññātānaṃ nivāretā ñātānaṃ pavesetā. iminā chaṭṭhena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“And further, the royal frontier fortress has a gatekeeper—wise, competent, intelligent—to keep out those he doesn’t know and to let in those he does. With this sixth requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare pākāro hoti ucco ceva vitthato ca vāsanalepanasampanno ca. iminā sattamena nagaraparikkhārena suparikkhataṃ hoti rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“And further, the royal frontier fortress has ramparts: high & thick & completely covered with plaster. With this seventh requisite of a fortress it is well provided for the protection of those within and to ward off those without.
imehi sattahi nagaraparikkhārehi suparikkhataṃ hoti.
“These are the seven requisites of a fortress with which it is well provided.

(7 requisites leads to 4 types of food )

♦ “katamesaṃ catunnaṃ āhārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī?
“And which are the four types of food that it can obtain at will, without difficulty, without trouble?
idha, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ tiṇakaṭṭhodakaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
“There is the case where the royal frontier fortress has large stores of grass, timber & water for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ sāliyavakaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
And further, it has large stores of rice & barley for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ tilamuggamāsāparaṇṇaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya.
And further, it has large stores of sesame, green gram, & other beans for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without.
♦ “puna caparaṃ, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ bhesajjaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti, seyyathidaṃ — sappi navanītaṃ telaṃ madhu phāṇitaṃ loṇaṃ abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. imesaṃ kho, bhikkhave, catunnaṃ āhārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī.
And further, it has large stores of tonics—ghee, fresh butter, oil, honey, molasses, & salt—for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without. These are the four types of food it can obtain at will, without difficulty, without trouble.
♦ “yato kho, bhikkhave, rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ imehi sattahi nagaraparikkhārehi suparikkhataṃ hoti, imesañca catunnaṃ āhārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī. idaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, rañño paccantimaṃ nagaraṃ akaraṇīyaṃ bāhirehi paccatthikehi paccāmittehi.
“When a royal frontier fortress is well provided with these seven requisites of a fortress, and can obtain at will—without difficulty, without trouble—these four types of food, then it is said to be a royal frontier fortress that can’t be undone by external foes or duplicitous allies.

(7 requisites of monk)

evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, yato ariyasāvako sattahi saddhammehi samannāgato hoti, catunnañca jhānānaṃ ābhicetasikānaṃ diṭṭhadhammasukhavihārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī. ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akaraṇīyo mārassa akaraṇīyo pāpimato.
“In the same way, monks, when a disciple of the noble ones is endowed with seven true qualities [saddhamma] and can obtain at will—without difficulty, without trouble—the four jhānas, heightened mental states that provide a pleasant abiding in the here & now, he is said to be a disciple of the noble ones who can’t be undone by Māra, can’t be undone by the Evil One.
katamehi sattahi saddhammehi samannāgato hoti?
“Now, with which seven true qualities is he endowed?

(1. saddha/conviction → foundation post )

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare esikā hoti gambhīranemā sunikhātā acalā asampavedhī abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako saddho hoti, saddahati tathāgatassa bodhiṃ ‘itipi so ... pe ... buddho bhagavā’ti. saddhesiko, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati. iminā paṭhamena saddhammena samannāgato hoti.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has a foundation post—deeply rooted, well embedded, immovable, & unshakable—for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way a disciple of the noble ones has conviction, is convinced of the Tathāgata’s awakening: ‘Indeed, the Blessed One is worthy & rightly self-awakened, consummate in clear-knowing & conduct, well-gone, an expert with regard to the cosmos, unexcelled trainer of people fit to be tamed, teacher of devas & human beings, awakened, blessed.’ With conviction as his foundation post, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this first true quality is he endowed.

(2. hiri/sense-of-shame → moat deep and wide)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare parikkhā hoti gambhīrā ceva vitthatā ca abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako hirīmā hoti, hirīyati kāyaduccaritena vacīduccaritena manoduccaritena, hirīyati pāpakānaṃ akusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ samāpattiyā. hirīparikkho kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati. iminā dutiyena saddhammena samannāgato hoti.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has a moat, both deep & wide, for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way, the disciple of the noble ones has a sense of shame. He feels shame at (the thought of engaging in) bodily misconduct, verbal misconduct, mental misconduct. He feels shame at falling into evil, unskillful actions. With a sense of shame as his moat, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this second true quality is he endowed.

(3. otappa/compunction → encircling road)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare anupariyāyapatho hoti ucco ceva vitthato ca abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako ottappī hoti, ottappati kāyaduccaritena vacīduccaritena manoduccaritena, ottappati pāpakānaṃ akusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ samāpattiyā. ottappapariyāyapatho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati. iminā tatiyena saddhammena samannāgato hoti.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has an encircling road, both high & wide, for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way, the disciple of the noble ones has a sense of compunction. He feels compunction at (the suffering that would result from) bodily misconduct, verbal misconduct, mental misconduct. He feels compunction at falling into evil, unskillful actions. With a sense of compunction as his encircling road, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this third true quality is he endowed.

(4. bahu-suto/learned-much dhamma → many weapons stored)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ āvudhaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti salākañceva jevanikañca abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako bahussuto hoti ... pe ... diṭṭhiyā suppaṭividdhā. sutāvudho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati. iminā catutthena saddhammena samannāgato hoti.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has many weapons stored, both arrows & things to be hurled, for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way, the disciple of the noble ones has heard much, has retained what he has heard, has stored what he has heard. Whatever teachings are admirable in the beginning, admirable in the middle, admirable in the end, that—in their meaning & expression—proclaim the holy life that is entirely perfect, surpassingly pure: Those he has listened to often, retained, discussed, accumulated, examined with his mind, and well-penetrated in terms of his views. With learning as his weapons, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this fourth true quality is he endowed.

(5. arraddha-viriya/aroused-vigor → large army stationed)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahubalakāyo paṭivasati, seyyathidaṃ — hatthārohā assārohā rathikā dhanuggahā celakā calakā piṇḍadāyakā uggā rājaputtā pakkhandino mahānāgā sūrā cammayodhino dāsakaputtā abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako āraddhavīriyo viharati akusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ pahānāya, kusalānaṃ dhammānaṃ upasampadāya, thāmavā daḷhaparakkamo anikkhittadhuro kusalesu dhammesu. vīriyabalakāyo, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati. iminā pañcamena saddhammena samannāgato hoti.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has a large army stationed within—elephant soldiers, cavalry, charioteers, bowmen, standard-bearers, billeting officers, soldiers of the supply corps, noted princes, commando heroes, infantry, & slaves—for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way a disciple of the noble ones keeps his persistence aroused for abandoning unskillful mental qualities and taking on skillful mental qualities, is steadfast, solid in his effort, not shirking his duties with regard to skillful mental qualities. With persistence as his army, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this fifth true quality is he endowed.

(6. sati/mindfulness → wise gatekeeper)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare dovāriko hoti paṇḍito byatto medhāvī aññātānaṃ nivāretā ñātānaṃ pavesetā abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako satimā hoti paramena satinepakkena samannāgato cirakatampi cirabhāsitampi saritā anussaritā. satidovāriko, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati. iminā chaṭṭhena saddhammena samannāgato hoti.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has a gatekeeper—wise, competent, intelligent—to keep out those he doesn’t know and to let in those he does, for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way a disciple of the noble ones is mindful, endowed with excellent proficiency in mindfulness, remembering & able to call to mind even things that were done & said long ago. With mindfulness as his gatekeeper, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this sixth true quality is he endowed.

(7. pañña/discerment → ramparts high and thick)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare pākāro hoti ucco ceva vitthato ca vāsanalepanasampanno ca abbhantarānaṃ guttiyā bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako paññavā hoti udayatthagāminiyā paññāya samannāgato ariyāya nibbedhikāya sammā dukkhakkhayagāminiyā. paññāvāsanalepanasampanno, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akusalaṃ pajahati, kusalaṃ bhāveti; sāvajjaṃ pajahati, anavajjaṃ bhāveti; suddhaṃ attānaṃ pariharati.
“Just as the royal frontier fortress has ramparts—high & thick & completely covered with plaster—for the protection of those within and to ward off those without; in the same way a disciple of the noble ones is discerning, endowed with discernment leading to the arising of the goal—noble, penetrating, leading to the right ending of stress. With discernment as his covering of plaster, the disciple of the noble ones abandons what is unskillful, develops what is skillful, abandons what is blameworthy, develops what is blameless, and looks after himself with purity. With this seventh true quality is he endowed.
iminā sattamena saddhammena samannāgato hoti. imehi sattahi saddhammehi samannāgato hoti.
“These are the seven true qualities with which he is endowed.

(with 7 requisites, 4 jhānas can be obtained easily )

♦ “katamesaṃ catunnaṃ jhānānaṃ ābhicetasikānaṃ diṭṭhadhammasukhavihārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī?
“And which are the four jhānas—heightened mental states that provide a pleasant abiding in the here & now—that he can obtain at will, without difficulty, without trouble?

(1. first jhana → grass, timber, water)

seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ tiṇakaṭṭhodakaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako vivicceva kāmehi ... pe ... paṭhamaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati attano ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya okkamanāya nibbānassa.
“Just as a royal frontier fortress has large stores of grass, timber & water for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without; in the same way the disciple of the noble ones, quite secluded from sensuality, secluded from unskillful qualities, enters & remains in the first jhāna—rapture & pleasure born of seclusion, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation—for his own delight, convenience, & comfort, and to alight on unbinding.

(2. second jhana → rice, barley)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ sāliyavakaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako vitakkavicārānaṃ vūpasamā ... pe ... dutiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati attano ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya okkamanāya nibbānassa.
“Just as a royal frontier fortress has large stores of rice & barley for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without; in the same way the disciple of the noble ones, with the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, enters & remains in the second jhāna—rapture & pleasure born of concentration, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation—internal assurance—for his own delight, convenience, & comfort, and to alight on unbinding.

(3. third jhana → sesame, green gram, beans)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ tilamuggamāsāparaṇṇaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako pītiyā ca virāgā ... pe ... tatiyaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati attano ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya okkamanāya nibbānassa.
“Just as a royal frontier fortress has large stores of sesame, green gram, & other beans for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without; in the same way the disciple of the noble ones, with the fading of rapture, remains equanimous, mindful, & alert, and senses pleasure with the body. He enters & remains in the third jhāna—of which the noble ones declare, ‘Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding’—for his own delight, convenience, & comfort, and to alight on unbinding.

(4. fourth jhana → ghee, honey, butter, molasses, salt)

♦ “seyyathāpi, bhikkhave, rañño paccantime nagare bahuṃ bhesajjaṃ sannicitaṃ hoti, seyyathidaṃ — sappi navanītaṃ telaṃ madhu phāṇitaṃ loṇaṃ abbhantarānaṃ ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya bāhirānaṃ paṭighātāya. evamevaṃ kho bhikkhave, ariyasāvako sukhassa ca pahānā dukkhassa ca pahānā pubbeva somanassadomanassānaṃ atthaṅgamā adukkhamasukhaṃ upekkhāsatipārisuddhiṃ catutthaṃ jhānaṃ upasampajja viharati attano ratiyā aparitassāya phāsuvihārāya okkamanāya nibbānassa.
“Just as a royal frontier fortress has large stores of tonics—ghee, fresh butter, oil, honey, molasses, & salt—for the delight, convenience, & comfort of those within, and to ward off those without; in the same way the disciple of the noble ones, with the abandoning of pleasure & pain, as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress, enters & remains in the fourth jhāna—purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain—for his own delight, convenience, & comfort, and to alight on unbinding.
imesaṃ catunnaṃ jhānānaṃ ābhicetasikānaṃ diṭṭhadhammasukhavihārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī.
“These are the four jhānas—heightened mental states that provide a pleasant abiding in the here & now—that he can obtain at will, without difficulty, without trouble.
♦ “yato kho, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako imehi sattahi saddhammehi samannāgato hoti, imesañca catunnaṃ jhānānaṃ ābhicetasikānaṃ diṭṭhadhammasukhavihārānaṃ nikāmalābhī hoti akicchalābhī akasiralābhī. ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, ariyasāvako akaraṇīyo mārassa akaraṇīyo pāpimato”ti.
“When a disciple of the noble ones is endowed with these seven true qualities and can obtain at will—without difficulty, without trouble—these four jhānas, heightened mental states that provide a pleasant abiding in the here & now, he is said to be a disciple of the noble ones who can’t be undone by Māra, can’t be undone by the Evil One.”
tatiyaṃ.
(end of sutta)
See also: MN 117; SN 3:5; AN 4:28; AN 4:128; AN 4:245; AN 5:75—76; AN 6:20; AN 10:17

MA 3 parallel to AN 7.67 excerpt

from numata MA vol. 1 pdf file

MA 3 Fortress excerpt, parallel to AN 7.67

(1. saddha/conviction → foundation post )

1. Just as a watchtower is constructed in the king’s border town, built
firmly in the earth, indestructible, to ensure peace within and to control outside enemies—
in the same way, the noble disciple gains firm faith that is deeply settled in the Tathāgata, faith with firm roots that cannot be influenced by non-Buddhist renunciants or brahmins, or by gods, Māras, Brahmās, or anyone else in the world. This is how the noble disciple gains the “watchtower” of faith, which removes what is evil and unwholesome and develops wholesome states.

(2. hiri/sense-of-shame → moat deep and wide)

2. Just as a moat is excavated [around] the king’s border town, very
deep and wide, well designed and reliable, to ensure peace within and
to control outside enemies;
in the same way, the noble disciple has at all times a sense of shame. What is shameful he knows as shameful,
[namely] evil and unwholesome states, which pollute and defile, which
have various evil consequences, and create the root cause of birth and
death. This is how the noble disciple gains the “moat” of a sense of
shame, which removes what is evil and unwholesome and develops
wholesome states.

(3. otappa/compunction → encircling road)

3. Just as a road surrounds the king’s border town, open and clear,
level and wide, to ensure peace within and control outside enemies;
in the same way, the noble disciple at all times fears wrongdoing. What
is wrong he knows as wrong, [namely] evil and unwholesome states,
which pollute and defile, which will have various evil consequences,
which create the root cause of birth and death.
This is how the noble
disciple gains the “level road” of the fear of wrongdoing, which removes what is evil and unwholesome and develops wholesome states.

(4. bahu-suto/learned-much dhamma → many weapons stored)

4. Just as an army with four divisions is raised in the king’s border
town, with elephant troops, cavalry, chariot troops, and infantry, to
ensure peace within and to control outside enemies;
in the same way,
the noble disciple continuously applies effort, abandoning what is evil
and unwholesome and cultivating wholesome states. He constantly
arouses his mind, is single-minded and steadfast regarding the roots
of wholesomeness, without giving up his task.
This is how the noble
disciple gains the “army” of effort, which removes what is evil and
unwholesome and develops wholesome states.

(5. arraddha-viriya/aroused-vigor → large army stationed)

5. Just as weapons are provided for the troops of the king’s border
town—bows and arrows, swords and spears—to ensure peace within
and control outside enemies;
in the same way the noble disciple studies
widely and learns much, retaining and not forgetting it, accumulating
broad learning of what is called the Dharma, which is good in the
beginning, good in the middle, and good in the end, which has [proper]
meaning and expression, is endowed with purity, and reveals the holy
life. In this way he studies widely and learns much regarding all the
teachings, familiarizing himself with them even a thousand times, mentally considering and contemplating them with knowledge, vision, and
profound penetration.
This is how the noble disciple gains the “weapon”
of much learning, which removes what is evil and unwholesome and
develops wholesome states.

(6. sati/mindfulness → wise gatekeeper)

6. Just as a general is appointed as gatekeeper to the king’s border
town, one who is sharp-witted and wise in making decisions, brave
and resolute, of excellent counsel, who allows entry to the good and
keeps out the bad, to ensure peace within and to control outside enemies;
in the same way the noble disciple continuously practices mindfulness,
achieves right mindfulness, always recalling and not forgetting what
was done or heard long ago.
This is how the noble disciple gains the
“gatekeeping general” of mindfulness, which removes what is evil and
unwholesome and develops wholesome states.

(7. pañña/discerment → ramparts high and thick)

7. Just as a high rampart is constructed for the king’s border town,
extremely solid, plastered with mud and painted with whitewash, to
ensure peace within and to control outside enemies;
in the same way the noble disciple develops comprehension and wisdom, attains understanding concerning the rise and fall of phenomena, attains noble penetrative knowledge and discriminative understanding concerning the true cessation of suffering.
This is how the noble disciple gains the “rampart” of wisdom, which removes what is evil and unwholesome and develops wholesome states.

(with 7 requisites, 4 jhānas can be obtained easily )

(1. first jhana → grass, timber, water)

1. Just as supplies of water, grass, and firewood are provided for the
king’s border town to ensure peace within and control outside enemies;
in the same way the noble disciple, separated from desires, separated
from evil and unwholesome states, with initial and sustained application of the mind, with joy and happiness born of seclusion, dwells having attained the first absorption.
He abides in a happiness that lacks nothing, a peaceful happiness that leads naturally to nirvana.

(2. second jhana → rice, barley)

2. Just as plenty of rice is harvested and plenty of wheat is stored up
in the king’s border town to ensure peace within and to control outside
enemies;
in the same way the noble disciple, through the calming of
initial and sustained application of the mind, with inward stillness and mental one-pointedness, without initial and sustained application of the mind, with joy and happiness born of concentration, dwells having attained the second absorption.
He abides in a happiness that lacks nothing, a peaceful happiness that leads naturally to nirvana.

(3. third jhana → sesame, green gram, beans)

3. Just as large amounts of grain and beans of various sorts are
amassed in the king’s border town to ensure peace within and to control
outside enemies; in the same way the noble disciple, separated from
joy and desire, dwelling in equanimity and not seeking anything, with
right mindfulness and right attentiveness, experiencing pleasure with
the body, dwells having attained the third absorption, which the noble
ones speak of as noble equanimity and mindfulness, a happy abode.
He abides in a happiness that lacks nothing, a peaceful happiness that
leads naturally to nirvana.

(4. fourth jhana → ghee, honey, butter, molasses, salt)

4. Just as ghee, honey, sugarcane, sugar, fish, salt, and dried meat
are stored up in the king’s border town, being equipped with all of
these to ensure peace within and to control outside enemies; in the
same way the noble disciple, with the cessation of pleasure and pain,
and with the earlier cessation of joy and displeasure, with neither-painnor-pleasure, equanimity, mindfulness, and purity, dwells having
attained the fourth absorption,
abiding in a happiness that lacks nothing, a peaceful happiness that leads naturally to nirvana.
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first post updated with MA 3 excerpt added and Ven. Yodha’s drawing

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