The Story of Satthikutapeta

Verse 72: The skill of a fool can only harm him; it destroys his merit and his wisdom (lit., it severs his head).

1. sukkamsa: sukka + amsa : sukka means white, bright, pure or good; amsa means portion. According to the Commentary, sukkamsa means merit.

2. muddha: head, top, summit. According to the Commentary, it means knowledge.

The Story of Satthikutapeta

While residing at the Veluvana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (72) of this book with reference to a peta-ghost named Satthikutapeta.

The Chief Disciple Maha Moggallana saw this enormous peta-ghost while going on an alms-round with Thera Lakkhana. In this connection, the Buddha explained that Satthikutapeta, in one of his previous existences, was very skilful in throwing stones at things. One day, he asked permissions from his teacher to try out his skill. His teacher told him not to hit a cow, or a human being as he would have to pay compensation to the owner or to the relative, but to find a target which was ownerless or guardianless.

On seeing the paccekabuddha, the idiots lacking in intelligence, thought the paccekabuddha, having no relative or guardian, would be an ideal target. So he threw a stone at the paccekabuddha who was on an alms-round. The stone entered from one ear and came out of the other. The paccekabuddha expired when he reached the monastery. The stone-thrower was killed by the disciples of the paccekabuddha and he was reborn in Avici Niraya. Afterwards, he was reborn as a peta-ghost and had since been serving the remaining term of the evil consequences (kamma) of his evil deed. As a peta-ghost his enormous head was being continuously hit with red-hot hammers.

In conclusion, the Buddha said, “To a fool, his skill or knowledge is of no use; it can only harm him.”

Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:
Verse 72: The skill of a fool can only harm him; it destroys his merit and his wisdom (lit., it severs his head).

Dhammapada Verse 72
Satthikutapeta Vatthu

Yavadeva anatthaya
nattam balassa jayati
hanti balassa sukkamsam1
muddhamassa2 vipatayam.

Source: Tipitaka

Khmer Tipitaka 1 – 110

Khmer Tipitaka 1 – 110

The Tipitaka or Pali canon, is the collection of primary Pali language texts which form the doctrinal foundation of Theravada Buddhism. The three divisions of the Tipitaka are: Vinaya Pitaka, Sutta Pitaka, Abhidhamma Pitaka. ព្រះត្រៃបិដក ប្រែថា កញ្រ្ចែង ឬ ល្អី​ ៣ សម្រាប់ដាក់ផ្ទុកពាក្យពេចន៍នៃព្រះសម្មាសម្ពុទ្ធ

Listen to Khmer literature and Dhamma talk by His Holiness Jotannano Chuon Nath, Supreme Patriarch of Cambodia Buddhism.


As a solid rock is not shaken by the wind, so the wise are not shaken by blame and praise. As a deep lake is clear and calm, so the wise become tranquil after they listened to the truth... Good people walk on regardless of what happens to them. Good people do not babble on about their desires. Whether touched by happiness or by sorrow, the wise never appear elated or depressed… ~The Dhammapada

Should anyone wish to ridicule me and make me an object of jest and scorn why should I possibly care if I have dedicated myself to others?

Let them do as they wish with me so long as it does not harm them. May no one who encounters me ever have an insignificant contact.

Regardless whether those whom I meet respond towards me with anger or faith, may the mere fact of our meeting contribute to the fulfilment of their wishes.

May the slander, harm and all forms of abuse that anyone should direct towards me act as a cause of their enlightenment.