Ye cittaṁ saṁyamissanti
These are the Pali words of verse 37 of the Dhammapada. These words do not change but the interpretation of them does. So, how reliable are translations when key concepts can be presented differently by each translator?
Here are various translations:
1 Wandering far and wide on its own, without form, the mind lies in the heart-cavern within. To bring it under control is to be freed from the bonds of ignorance.
*Rendering by Ajahn Munindo**
2 Those who will restrain the mind that roams far, is lonesome, without a body, hidden, gain release from the bonds of Māra.
- Anandajoti Bhikkhu *.
3 Wandering afar and solitary, formless and resting in the cave of the heart is the mind. Those who shall subdue this mind are liberated from the bonds of Mara.
* BuddhaRakkhita Thera**
4 The mind travels far, wandering alone; incorporeal, it hides in a cave. Those who will restrain the Mind, are freed from Māra’s bonds.
5 Those who bridle their mind which travels far, moves about alone, is without a body, and hides in the chamber of the heart, will be free from the bonds of Mara, the tempter.
6 Wandering far, going alone, bodiless, lying in a cave: the mind. Those who restrain it: from Mara’s bonds they’ll be freed.
So, these translations are fairly consistent at the beginning and the end but it is the middle part that interests me. The Mind is “hidden”, “hides in a cave”, rests “in the cave of the heart”.
Is the mind hidden? If so, hidden from what and by what? Is it to be found in any old cave, or is there a special one we can travel to? Is the cave, the cave of the heart? If so, what is the cave of the heart and how does this differ from the Mind?
I personally like Buddharakkita Thera’s translation. As a meditator, it makes perfect sense to me.