In "The Longer Advice to Rāhula" the following appears:

Muditaṁ, rāhula, bhāvanaṁ bhāvehi. Muditañhi te, rāhula, bhāvanaṁ bhāvayato yā arati sā pahīyissati.

Bhante Sujato translates this as

Meditate on rejoicing. For when you meditate on rejoicing any discontent will be given up.

Thanissaro Bhikkhu:

“Develop the meditation of empathetic joy. For when you are developing the meditation of empathetic joy, resentment will be abandoned.

Bhikkhu Vagga:

"Rāhula, develop meditation on altruistic joy; for when you develop meditation on altruistic joy, any discontent will be abandoned.

Can somebody please explain which terms correspond to which here, and how the translation is carried out? Thank you

  • 1
    Take advantage of the lookup feature at: suttacentral.net/mn62/en/sujato After clicking the given link, click the "views" icon (the "eye" icon at top right corner) > Check "Line by line" under "View root text with translation" > Check "English" under "Activate Pali word lookup". Now you can see both Pali and English texts being shown line-by-line. Then click on any Pali terms and there should be a translation pop-up window at the bottom of the page.
    – santa100
    Mar 20, 2022 at 20:13

2 Answers 2


Can somebody please explain which terms correspond to which here

  • "Muditaṁ"
    • rejoicing
    • empathetic joy
    • altruistic joy
  • "bhāvanaṁ bhāvehi"
    • Meditate on
    • Develop the meditation of
    • develop meditation on
  • "Muditañhi" and "bhāvanaṁ bhāvayato" (repeated as above)
  • arati
    • discontent
    • resentment
  • pahīyissati
    • given up
    • abandoned

how the translation is carried out?

I guess you're asking how translators learn to understand a new or "foreign" language?

I think people often have a teacher, when they're learning.

And when they learn, they learn:

  • Grammar
  • Vocabulary
  • Subject matter

... so they learn the meanings of words and also what the author is likely to be saying when they use those words.

I suppose you learn the "meaning" of a word by seeing it used in context and recognising it when you see it again. For example I think that "the meditation to develop metta" is called "metta bhavana" -- and I recognise "mudita" as being one of the four bhamaviharas (of which metta is another) -- and so together perhaps that helps me to understand or recognise what "Muditaṁ bhāvanaṁ bhāvehi" means (i.e. substituting mudita for metta).

Why is it that Aarti is translated as resentment in one case, but discontent in the others?

I think they ("resentment" and "discontent") are similar in meaning.

There are some essays about the brahmaviharas here: https://accesstoinsight.org/search_results.html?&q=brahmaviharas

One of those says,

These four attitudes are said to be excellent or sublime because they are the right or ideal way of conduct towards living beings (sattesu samma patipatti). They provide, in fact, the answer to all situations arising from social contact. They are the great removers of tension, the great peace-makers in social conflict, and the great healers of wounds suffered in the struggle of existence. They level social barriers, build harmonious communities, awaken slumbering magnanimity long forgotten, revive joy and hope long abandoned, and promote human brotherhood against the forces of egotism.

The Brahma-viharas are incompatible with a hating state of mind [...]

I think they're taught as being not only good-in-themselves but also as antidotes to "hating" (or hateful) states of mind, and more specifically four different remedies to four different types of hate.

I think mudita is the antidote to a type of hate that's called "envy" in English -- for example perhaps "he has all those nice things and is happy, I live in poverty and am sad, I deserve more than he does because I am virtuous and he's a cheat", and so on -- those are unhappy thoughts (which could be translated as both or either of the words "discontent" and "resentment").

And mudita tries to be happy because of someone else's success, for example -- "I'm happy that he's materially comfortable" ... or "I'm happy that other people praise him".

  • Thank you. I understand how translators learn a foreign language, my question here could have been better put: what are the specific textual arguments that support this translation over the one? “Resentment” and “discontent” have different meanings in English; discontent is a very broad term, whereas resentment is much narrower.
    – Jbag1212
    Mar 19, 2022 at 21:28
  • If one is broad and the other is narrow then perhaps they're not "different" in the sense of being "contradictory" -- instead a person might feel both, one includes the other. It's not uncommon with translations of Pali words -- for example look at how many 'different' English words are used to translate dukkha. As you learn, the original word e.g. "mudita" means something to you -- perhaps a range of meanings -- and so you use that in your thoughts and speech, instead of English translations.
    – ChrisW
    Mar 20, 2022 at 3:30
  • Can you please change my username to "Order of the Lotus Irelia"? I can't change it for 30 days. Thank you.
    – user23951
    Apr 8, 2022 at 14:43

Arati is feeling boring, sad, annoying, mad, no-right, or envy when someone getting good resultant, something good or happiness, such as one feel boring when the opposite party win an election, or an ex-boyfriend feeling sad for an ex-girlfriend getting new partner.

Mudita is feeling happy, congratulation for someone getting good resultant, something good or happiness, such as one feel congratulation when the opposite party win an election, or an ex-boyfriend feeling happy for an ex-girlfriend getting new partner.

  • Why is it that Aarti is translated as resentment in one case, but discontent in the others?
    – Jbag1212
    Mar 19, 2022 at 2:54
  • Other translations also translate this word differently (as 'dislike', for instance).
    – Jbag1212
    Mar 19, 2022 at 2:55
  • In other words, Thanissaro has translated Arati in the way you suggest; i.e., resentment is the feeling of disliking somebody else's good result. Whereas the other translations are translating Arati more broadly
    – Jbag1212
    Mar 19, 2022 at 2:56
  • "girlfriend" = "sexual misconduct" Mar 19, 2022 at 3:41
  • 2
    The anger in either sexual misconduct or right conduction has no mudita. Mudita is happy for other's happiness, resultant. Karuna want to help people form the bad resultant which originated by the misconduct. So, the practitioner should be happy for happy no virtue ex girlfriend while he feeling Karuna to her for her misconduct too. Any anger is bad even anger in other's misconduct.
    – Bonn
    Mar 19, 2022 at 4:04

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