Index of Similes
See also the other indexes:

This is a partial index of the similes and metaphors that appear in the suttas available at Access to Insight. Only the imagery that illustrates points of Dhamma is included here; imagery that serves primarily a literary or narrative function is not included (e.g., Ambapali's description of her long-lost youthful beauty). The subject of each image is given in the braces {}. The tilde (~) stands for the head-word in a given entry.

Suttas without hyperlinks are those not currently available at Access to Insight; they are included here only for reference.

A  

Acrobats:
{watching after oneself/others} SN 47.19
Ancient city:
{awakening} SN 12.65
Animals bound together by a rope:
{lack of mindfulness} SN 35.206
Archer:
{brevity of life; heedfulness} SN 20.6; archer's apprentice {jhāna} AN 9.36. See also Arrow, Fletcher.
Arrow:
{dukkha} Sn 3.8; poisoned {speculative views} MN 63, {craving} MN 105, {contagiousness of evil} Iti 76; person shot with two ~ {physical and mental pain} SN 36.6; in the heart {sensuality} Sn 4.15; piercing a horsehair {subtlety of Dhamma} SN 56.45; Thag 1.26; removed {greed} SN 1.5; shot into the night {bad people} Dhp 304; straightened by a fletcher (see Fletcher). See also Doctor, Fletcher.

B  

Bamboo:
destroyed by its own fruit {evil} Dhp 164, Iti 50; spreading {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3
Bathman or bathman's apprentice:
{rapture of 1st jhāna} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39, MN 119, AN 5.28
Bandits:
{external sense media} SN 35.197
Barley reaper:
{defilements} Miln II.1.8
Beast of burden:
{persistence} Sn 1.4
Beauty queen:
{mindfulness} SN 47.20
Bee gathering nectar:
{sage} Dhp 49
Bird:
escaping from net {rarity of heavenly birth} Dhp 174; leaving no track {arahant} Dhp 92; sighting shore {seeking the Buddha; meaning of Tathagata} DN 11, AN 6.54; spattered with dirt {mindfulness} SN 9.1; with wings as its only burden {contentment} DN 2, DN 11, MN 38,
Blindness:
{ignorance} MN 75
Blind men:
row of {ignorance} MN 95; and the elephant {ignorance} Ud 6.4
Boat being bailed out:
{defilements} Dhp 369
Bog:
{sensuality} Sn 4.15
Boil, festering:
{the body} AN 9.15
Boiling the River Ganges:
{speech} MN 21
Bones:
chain or heap {sensuality} MN 54, AN 5.76; mountain {length of samsara} Iti 24
Bottomless chasm:
{painful feeling} SN 36.4
Boulder thrown into lake:
{kamma} SN 42.6
Bowl of poison:
{passion} Thig 14
Branch, man grasping a:
{self-view} AN 4.178
Bubble on water:
{appropriate attention} SN 22.95
Bull:
born into a herd of cattle {arahant} AN 5.179; yoked to a load {endurance} Thag 14.2. See also Cow.
Burning ghee or oil:
{meditation on the fire property} Ud 8.9, Ud 8.10
Burning grass or leaves:
{not-self} SN 35.101
Burning refuge:
{dukkha} Sn 3.8
Butcher or butcher's apprentice:
{meditation on the four properties} DN 22, MN 119; {trance of non-breathing} MN 36. See also Bull, Cow.
Butcher of goats:
{kamma} AN 3.99
Butter from water:
{wrong view} MN 126

C  

Calf not seeing its mother:
{change & alteration} SN 22.80. See also Cow.
Carpenter:
{wearing down the effluents} SN 22.101; {self-control} Dhp 80, Dhp 145; {applied thought} Miln II.3.13
Cart wheel:
{suffering} Dhp 1
Catching arrows:
{brevity of life; heedfulness} SN 20.6
Cave:
{the body; sensuality} Sn 4.2
Cesspool difficult to clean:
{impurities} Sn 2.6
Chaff:
{corrupt person} Sn 1.5, Sn 2.6; {dead body} SN 35.69; {others' faults} Dhp 252
Charcoals:
{passions} AN 8.28
Chariot:
{anger} Dhp 222; {the body} Dhp 151; {concentration} AN 5.28; {mindfulness} MN 119; {world} Dhp 171
Chariots, relay:
{stages of insight} MN 24
Charioteer:
{sense-restraint} Dhp 94
Cheater:
{others' errors} Dhp 252
Children playing with sand castles:
{aggregates} SN 23.2
City of bones:
{the body} Dhp 150
City superintendent at a crossroads:
{consciousness} Miln II.3.12
Cleansing of the body with scouring balls and bath powder:
{cleansing the mind} AN 3.70
Cleansing of the head with paste and clay:
{cleansing the mind} AN 3.70
Cliff, frightful:
{fear of birth, aging, and death} SN 56.42
Cloth, person covered with white:
{4th jhāna} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39, AN 5.28; soiled {conceit} SN 22.89; to be dyed {defiled and undefiled mind} MN 7, Ud 5.3
Cock's feather in fire:
{unattractiveness} AN 7.46
Conch-trumpet blower:
{sublime attitudes} SN 42.8
Constellations:
{heedfulness} AN 10.15
Cosmos:
walking to the end of the {suffering} AN 9.38
Cotton tuft:
{rapture} Thag 1.104
Couple eating their child:
{purpose of food} SN 12.63
Cow:
butchered {meditation on the four properties} DN 22, MN 119; flayed {contact} SN 12.63; led to slaughter {inevitability of death} AN 7.70, Sn 3.8; milked dry {lack of moderation} MN 33, AN 11.18; producing milk, curds, butter, ghee, etc. {practice for oneself and others} AN 4.95; roaming in the mountains {mastery of jhāna} AN 9.35; skinned {sensuality} MN 146; that runs away {fool} SN 11.5; udder {brief time} SN 20.4. See also Bull, Butcher.
Cowherd:
competent {skillfulness} MN 33, AN 11.18; counting another's cattle {heedlessness} Dhp 19; driving cattle {aging and death} Dhp 135; incompetent {unskillfulness} MN 33, AN 11.18; mindful of his cows {skillfulness} MN 19; prodding and poking his cows {skillfulness} MN 19; reflecting on the places his cattle have wandered {uposatha} AN 3.70. See also Bull, Cow.
Crafts, Trades, and Professions.:
See Archer, Bathman, Butcher, Carpenter, Charioteer, Cowherd, Doctor, Elephant tamer, Fletcher, Goldsmith, Horsetrainer, Irrigator, Ivory carver, King, Magician, Potter, Silversmith, Trader, Turner, Warrior, Weigher.
Creeper pod:
{future dangers} MN 45
Crooked chariot wheels:
{faults} AN 3.15
Cymbals striking together:
{contact} Miln II.3.8

D  

Darkness, intergalactic:
{fear of birth, aging, and death} SN 56.46
Debt:
{conviction} AN 6.45
Deer that wanders in the wilderness:
{solitude} Sn 1.3
Dewdrop on tip of grass blade:
{brevity of life} AN 7.70
Digging in earth:
{speech} MN 21
Dirt-washer:
{purifying the mind} AN 3.100 (i-x)
Doctor:
{the Buddha} MN 63, MN 105. See also Arrow.
Dog:
chasing swine {gratitude} SN 7.14; gnawing on a chain of bones {sensuality} MN 54; tied to a post {self-view} SN 22.99, SN 22.100.
Donkey that thinks it's a cow:
{insincerity with regard to the Dhamma} AN 3.81
Drawing pictures in space:
{speech} MN 21
Dream, waking from:
{sensuality} MN 54; {death} Sn 4.6
Drinking water:
{subduing hatred} from a clear pool AN 5.162; from a dirty pool AN 5.162; from a puddle in a hoofprint AN 5.162
Drum peg:
{listening to Dhamma} SN 20.7
Dry piece of wood:
{mindfulness} MN 119
Dung beetle:
{pride} SN 17.5
Dust:
on a fingertip {dukkha} SN 13.1, {rarity of human birth} SN 20.2; thrown into wind {evil} Dhp 125
Dusty road:
{household life} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 36, MN 125

E  

Earth:
{arahant} Dhp 95
Elephant:
and the blind men {ignorance} Ud 6.4; footprint {four noble truths} MN 28, {heedfulness} SN 3.17, AN 10.15; in battle {patient endurance} Dhp 320, Thag 3.8; in battle {sensual passion} AN 5.139, {sense-restraint} AN 5.140; in rut {self-control} Dhp 324, Dhp 326; in the wild {mature companion} Sn 1.3; relieves an itch {solitude in the wilderness} AN 9.40; renouncing its herd {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3; snared {attachments} MN 66; stuck in mud {heedfulness} Dhp 327; tamable {factors for exertion} MN 90; tamed {self-training} Dhp 322
Elephant-tamer:
{renunciation} MN 125
Embers in a pit:
{passion} Thig 14
Empty water pot:
{mindfulness} MN 119
Executioner:
five {aggregates} SN 35.197; sixth {passion/delight} SN 35.197
Eyes, man opening and closing his:
{faculties} MN 152

F  

False path in the forest:
{wrong eightfold path} MN 19
Farmer's urgent duties:
{self-training} AN 3.91
Field:
neglecting one's own {teaching Dhamma} DN 12; spoiled by weeds {passion} Dhp 356
Fire:
{clinging} SN 12.52, SN 35.28, SN 44.9; {discernment} Thag 1.3; {heedfulness} Dhp 31; {passion} Dhp 251; {restlessness} SN 46.53; {sluggishness} SN 46.53; fire's destination {nibbana} Ud 8.10; fire not returning {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3; hidden in ashes {unskillful action} Dhp 71; different types of fire {classes of consciousness} MN 38; different types of fire {virtue and results thereof} MN 93
Fire-stick:
{sensuality} MN 36; {feeling} SN 48.39
Firebrand with excrement:
{practicing Dhamma for no one's benefit} AN 4.95; {failing to practice Dhamma} SN 22.80, Iti 91
Fish:
caught in net {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3, {sensuality} Thag 4.8; caught in trap {sensuality} Ud 7.4; caught on a hook {six senses} SN 35.189; in dried-up puddle {self-view} Sn 4.2, SN 5.10; flip-flapping on dry land {unsteady mind} Dhp 34; rising through the water {recognizing a wise person} AN 4.192; rotten and wrapped in grass {associating with fools} Iti 76; struggling in water {quarreling} Sn 4.15
Fisherman:
{Māra} SN 35.189
Flame:
overthrown by wind{arahant} Sn 5.6; passed from one lamp to another {rebirth} Miln III.5.5; unbinding of {nibbana} Thig 5.10;
Fletcher straightening an arrow:
{exertion} MN 101; {training the mind} Dhp 33, Thag 1.29; {restraint} Dhp 145, Dhp 80. See also Arrow.
Flies' eggs:
{sensuality} MN 33, AN 11.18
Flood:
{craving, sensuality, becoming, ignorance} SN 1.1, SN 45.171; {greed} Sn 4.15; sweeping away a sleeping village {death} Dhp 47, Dhp 286. See also River, Ocean.
Flower:
blossom {speech} Dhp 51; heap {skillfulness} Dhp 53; scent {integrity} Dhp 54. See also Lotus.
Flower-arranger:
{Dhamma follower} Dhp 44
Foam:
{the body/form} SN 22.95, Dhp 46
Fords:
{asking questions} MN 33, AN 11.18
Forest:
{desire} Dhp 283; {Dhamma} Sn 2.1
Fort:
{mind} Dhp 40
Fragrances:
{heedfulness} flower AN 10.15; root AN 10.15; wood AN 10.15
Frontier fortress:
{the body} SN 35.204; {seven skillful qualities} AN 7.63; {liberation is not for everyone} AN 10.95; {guarding oneself} Dhp 315, Thag 14.1; foundation post {conviction} AN 7.63; moat {shame} AN 7.63; encircling road {concern} AN 7.63; weapons {learning} AN 7.63; army {persistence} AN 7.63; gate-keeper {mindfulness} AN 7.63; ramparts {discernment} AN 7.63; stores of grass {1st jhāna} AN 7.63; stores of rice {2nd jhāna} AN 7.63; stores of sesame {3rd jhāna} AN 7.63; stores of tonics {4th jhāna} AN 7.63
Fruit, ripe:
{death} Sn 3.8
Full moon:
{discernment} Thig 1.3. See Moon.
Full water pot:
{mindfulness} MN 119
Fumigation:
{teaching Dhamma} MN 33, AN 11.18

G  

Gem with colored thread inside:
{clear seeing} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12
Gift of food:
{good will} SN 20.4
Goat butcher:
{kamma} AN 3.99
Gold:
coins raining {sensuality} Dhp 186; disappearance of {disappearance of Dhamma} SN 16.13; ingot {discernment and virtue} Dhp 229; mountain {sensuality} SN 4.20; ornament {arahant} AN 4.28
Goldsmith:
purifying gold {purifying the mind} AN 3.100 (i-x), AN 3.100 (xi-xv); crafting any kind of article {supranormal powers} DN 2, DN 11
Gong:
{applied and sustained thought} Miln II.3.14
Gourds in autumn:
{bones} Dhp 149
Grass:
with sharp blades{wrong practice} Dhp 311; wild grass after rain {dukkha} Dhp 335
Green reed cut down:
{foolish person} SN 1.10
Ground far from the sky:
{foolish person} SN 5.10
Guest house:
{feelings in the body} SN 36.14
Guest refusing the host's food:
{insulting behavior} SN 7.2

H  

Handful of leaves:
{Dhamma} SN 56.31
Hands clapping:
{contact} Miln II.3.8
Hawk attacking quail:
{mindfulness} SN 47.6
Head of snake:
{sensuality} Sn 4.1
Head on fire:
See Turban on fire
Head sliced open with sword:
{pain} MN 36
Heartwood:
{goal of the Dhamma} MN 29, MN 30, MN 35; {the Buddha} MN 18, MN 138; {appropriate attention} SN 22.95; {not-self} SN 35.193
Hell, saved from:
{Dhamma} DN 12
Hen covering her eggs:
{virtue, etc.} MN 53, SN 22.101
Herd of cattle:
{arahant} AN 3.57
Herons wasting away:
{falling short of celibacy} Dhp 155
Himalayas:
{good people} Dhp 304
Hog, fat and lazy:
{foolish person} Dhp 325
Honey ball:
{flavor of Dhamma} MN 18
Hooks:
{six senses} SN 35.189
Horse:
awakened by the whip {conscience} SN 1.18; deprived of fodder {father of fools} SN 7.14; fast {wise person} Dhp 29; stallion {self-training} Dhp 94, Dhp 144, Dhp 380; stirred by a goad-stick {trainable person} AN 4.113; tamed {self-tamed person} Dhp 322; thoroughbred {arahant} Thag 2.27, Thig 5.10; thoroughbred {jhāna} AN 11.10; thoroughbred {qualities of a consummate monk} AN 3.94, AN 8.13; unbroken colt {jhāna} AN 11.10
Horsetrainer:
{trainable person} AN 4.111
House:
built from the bottom up {four noble truths} SN 56.44; fireproof {mindfulness/awareness} SN 35.202; flammable {mindfulness/awareness} SN 35.202; on fire {the body} SN 1.41; with poor roof {unguarded mind} AN 3.105.

I  

Illness, man recovering from:
{hindrances} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39
Incense wrapped in leaf:
{associating with people of integrity} Iti 76
Indra's pillar:
{arahant} Dhp 95
Inscription in rock or water:
{anger} AN 3.130
Insects falling into flame:
{ignorance} Ud 6.9
Iron ball aflame, eating or swallowing an:
{restraint} Dhp 307, Iti 48, Iti 91; {sensuality} Dhp 371
Irrigator:
{self-control} Dhp 80, Dhp 145
Island:
{refuge in Dhamma} DN 16, DN 26, SN 22.43, SN 47.13, Dhp 25, Dhp 236, Dhp 238, Sn 5.10
Ivory carver or his assistant:
{supranormal powers} DN 2, DN 11

J  

Jackal:
{the perils of fame} SN 17.8
Jail, person thrown in:
{kamma} AN 3.99
Jar:
filled with water {right concentration} AN 5.28; filled with ghee or oil {virtue} SN 42.6, SN 55.21; made of clay {the body} Dhp 40

K  

King:
hearing a lute {not-self} SN 35.205; renouncing kingdom {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3, Dhp 329; seeing no danger after victory {virtue} DN 2, DN 11.

L  

Lake:
deep and calm {wise people} Dhp 82; dried-up {virtue} Dhp 155; free of mud {arahant} Dhp 95; person stranded in the middle {clinging} Sn 5.10; spring-fed {jhāna} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39, MN 119, AN 5.28; unruffled by wind {arahant} Iti 92.
Lamp:
going out{detachment} SN 54.8; in a dark house {insight} Miln II.1.14; passing its flame to another {rebirth} Miln III.5.5; in the dark {stock exclamation of appreciation of the Dhamma} — see Uprighting what had been overturned
Leaf, yellowed:
{aging} Dhp 235
Leaky boat:
{pain} Sn 4.1
Leaves:
blown from a tree {unwholesome states} Thag 17.2; handful of {Dhamma} SN 56.31
Leper covered with sores:
{sensuality} MN 75
Lily/lotus crushed in hand:
{self-view} Dhp 285
Limb falling from tree:
{nibbana} SN 47.13
Linchpin in a moving cart:
{generosity and kindness} AN 4.32
Lion:
in the wild {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3, Sn 3.1; unstartled by sounds {wise person} Sn 1.3, Sn 1.12
Line drawn on water:
{brevity of life} AN 7.70
Loan, man taking out a:
{hindrances} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39
Log in a stream:
{path of practice} SN 35.200. See also Stream.
Lost caravan leader:
{virtue} Sn 4.13
Lotus:
crushed in the hand {self-view} Dhp 285; pond {jhāna} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39, MN 119, AN 5.28; pond {the world} MN 26; rising above the water {Tathagata} AN 10.81; scent of {self-view} SN 22.89; unsmeared by water {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3, Sn 1.12; unsmeared by water {sensuality} Sn 4.9. See also Flower, Water on a lotus.
Lute, disassembled:
{not-self} SN 35.205

M  

Magic show:
{the body} Thig 14
Magician:
{consciousness} SN 22.95
Man:
burning different kinds of wood {persistence and exertion} MN 90; carrying burning grass torch {sensuality} MN 54; pursuing a woman {unworthy teacher} DN 12; repaid by king {feeling} Miln II.3.9; returning home after long absence {kamma} Dhp 219; seeking heartwood {seeking the goal of the Dhamma} MN 29, MN 30, MN 35; seeking heartwood {seeking the Buddha} MN 18, MN 138; seeking heartwood {appropriate attention} SN 22.95; seeking heartwood {not-self} SN 35.193; with borrowed goods {sensuality} MN 54;
Man & woman in love {desire}":
MN 101
Meat thrown into a fire:
{brevity of life} AN 7.70
Merchant with caravan:
{avoiding evil} Dhp 123
Middle of the sea:
{stillness of mind} Sn 4.14
Milk:
{evil deed} Dhp 71; from a cow {self-view} DN 9; from a cow's horn {wrong view} MN 126. See also Cow.
Mirage:
{the body} Dhp 46, Thig 14; {perception} SN 22.95
Mire, person stuck in the:
{ignorance} MN 8
Mirror of the Dhamma:
{stream-entry} DN 16
Money:
{uposatha observance} AN 10.46
Monkey:
caught in tar trap {mindfulness} SN 47.7; in forest {heedlessness} Dhp 334; swinging from branch to branch {untrained in Dhamma; inconstancy of mind} SN 12.61, Sn 4.4
Moon:
{arahant} Dhp 413; {good will} Iti 27 (a), (b); {heedfulness} AN 10.15; {jhāna} Dhp 387; full {arahant} Thig 1.3; set free from a cloud {heedfulness, skillfulness} Dhp 172, Dhp 382, Iti 74; waning {unvirtuous person} DN 31, SN 5.10; waxing {virtuous person} DN 31;
Morning star:
{good will} Iti 27
Mother risking life for child:
{good will} Sn 1.8
Mountain:
of gold {sensuality} SN 4.20; of solid rock {arahant} Ud 3.4, Thag 14.1 of solid rock {imperturbability} AN 6.55; of solid rock {restraint} Dhp 7;
Mountains crushing in from all directions:
{brevity of life} SN 3.25
Mules, tamed:
{self-tamed person} Dhp 322
Muñja grass:
{resolve and determination} Sn 3.2
Mural painted on wall:
{the body} Thig 14
Murderer with sword:
{disenchantment} AN 6.103; {heedfulness} AN 7.46
Mustard seed:
{passion} Dhp 407; {sensuality} Dhp 401. (Note: the famous parable in which the Buddha challenges a grieving Kisa Gotami to fetch a mustard seed from any household that has never known death is found in the Commentaries to Thig 10.1 (ThigA X.1) and Dhp 114.)

N  

Noise from a soft catskin bag:
{speech} MN 21

O  

Ocean:
an abode for mighty creatures {Dhamma-vinaya} Ud 5.5; crossing over the {arahant} SN 35.187, Iti 69; slope of ~ floor {progress of Dhamma practice} Ud 5.5; greatness of {stream-entry} SN 13.8; intolerance to dead bodies {unvirtuous person} Ud 5.5; many treasures of {37 wings to awakening} Ud 5.5; middle of ~ is calm {stillness of mind} Sn 4.14; polluted by a pot of poison {abuse towards the Tathagata} Iti 89; salty taste of {release} Ud 5.5; stability of {restraint of the Vinaya} Ud 5.5; steady level of {nibbana} Ud 5.5. See also Flood.
Oil from gravel:
{wrong view} MN 126
Oil lamp:
depends on wick and fuel {feeling} SN 36.7; flickering of {six senses} MN 146
Ornament of gold:
{arahant} AN 4.28
Ox:
{suffering} Dhp 1; {person who doesn't listen} Dhp 152; eating corn {sensuality} SN 35.205; joined by a single yoke {sense-bases and their objects} SN 35.191

P  

Painting of a woman or man:
{not-self} SN 22.100; {nutriment} SN 12.64
Palm leaf dropping away:
{aversion} Iti 88
Palm tree:
with top cut off {awakening} MN 105; uprooted {awakening} MN 49, SN 22.3, SN 41.7, SN 44.1.
Pastures:
{mindfulness} MN 33, AN 11.18
Path, man showing the:
{Tathagata} SN 22.84
Peacock:
{jhāna} Sn 1.12
Peg in drum:
{listening to Dhamma} SN 20.7
Person looking down from a rocky crag:
{wise person} Iti 38
Person reflecting on another:
{higher knowledges} AN 5.28
Person riding a small wooden plank in the great ocean:
{laziness} Iti 78
Pillar at a bathing ford:
{wise person} Sn 1.12
Pit of embers:
{intellectual intention} SN 12.63; {sensuality} MN 54, Thig 14
Plow:
{discernment} Sn 1.4. See also Yokes.
Poison:
{evil deeds} Dhp 123
Poison, man drinking:
{restraint} MN 105; {volition} Miln II.3.11
Polished shell:
{life as a bhikkhu} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 36, MN 125, Ud 5.6
Pond:
{integrity} delightful, SN 3.19; haunted, SN 3.19
Pool of water:
clear or muddy {mind} AN 1.45-46; in a mountain glen {arahant} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39
Poor person:
{fetters} MN 66; {speech} AN 10.24
Pot:
flattened metal {nibbana} Dhp 134; of pickled greens {passion} Thig 1.1; smashed by stone {delusion} Sn 3.2
Potter or potter's apprentice:
{supranormal powers} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12
Potter's clay vessels:
{inevitability of death} Sn 3.8
Princes of wattle-and-daub towns:
{heedfulness} AN 10.15
Prison, man released from:
{hindrances} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39
Propagation of plants:
{aggregates} SN 22.54

Q  

Quail snared by a rotten creeper:
{attachments} MN 66

R  

Rabbit caught in snare:
{fetters} Dhp 342
Raft:
{eightfold path} MN 22, SN 35.197, Sn 1.2
Rafters of house:
{defilements} Dhp 153; {heedfulness} AN 10.15
Rag, saving the good part of a:
{subduing hatred} AN 5.162
Rain:
{austerity} Sn 1.4; entering hut {passion} Dhp 13; from a cloud {generosity} Iti 75; from a cloud {concentration} SN 54.9; from a thunderhead {discernment} AN 4.102; sent by devas {brevity of life} AN 7.70; stilling a cloud of dust {silencing one's thoughts} Iti 87, Thag 15.1
Rams butting heads:
{contact} Miln II.3.8
Reeds or rushes:
destroyed by their own fruit {defilements} SN 3.23; drawn from their sheaths{supranormal powers} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12; matted {craving} AN 4.199.
Reflection of one's face in mirror:
{mind-reading} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, AN 10.54; {"I am" with possessiveness} SN 22.83
Reservoir with four inlets and outlets:
{virtuous conduct} AN 8.54
Rhinoceros:
{solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3
Rich person:
{speech} AN 10.24
Riddle tree:
{purity of vision} SN 35.204
Ridge-pole of house:
{ignorance} Dhp 153
River:
{craving} Dhp 251, Iti 109; flow down to the sea {heedfulness} AN 10.15; carrying everything with it {brevity of life} AN 7.70; swift current {hunger} Sn 4.15, {hindrances} AN 5.51; gives up its name upon reaching the sea {going-forth} Ud 5.5; person swept away by a {not-self} SN 22.93. See also Flood.
Road:
{eightfold path} MN 33, AN 11.18; dangerous {evil deeds} Dhp 123
Rock:
broken in two {sphere of nothingness} MN 105; in wind {wise person} Dhp 81
Roots, medicinal:
{craving} Dhp 337
Rubbish pile with lotus:
{Buddha} Dhp 58
Rust eating iron:
{evil deeds} Dhp 240

S  

Sack full of grains:
{the body} DN 22, MN 119
Salt:
in water {evil deed} AN 3.99; taste of ocean {Dhamma} Ud 5.5
Sand castles:
{aggregates} SN 23.2
Saw used by an attacking bandit:
{patient endurance} MN 21, MN 28
Seed:
{conviction} Sn 1.4; bitter {wrong view} AN 10.104; capable of sprouting {kamma} AN 3.33; mustard ~ {sensuality} Dhp 401; mustard ~ {passion} Dhp 407; rotting in a field: SN 5.10; sweet: AN 10.104. See also Mustard seed.
Seedling not watered:
{change & alteration} SN 22.80.
Seizure:
{anger} Dhp 251
Servant murdering his master:
{not-self} SN 22.85
Shack, flammable:
{mindfulness/awareness} SN 35.202. See also House.
Shadow that never leaves:
{kamma} SN 3.4, SN 3.20, Dhp 1
Sheaf of barley thrashed repeatedly:
{foolish person} SN 35.207
Sheaves of reeds:
{dependent co-arising} SN 12.67
Ship left ashore over winter:
{fetters} SN 22.101
Shore:
far {nibbana} SN 35.197; far {external sense media} SN 35.200; near {self-view} SN 35.197; near {internal sense media} SN 35.200. See also Stream.
Shot with arrow:
{craving} Sn 2.10, Sn 4.1; {present kamma} MN 101
Shuttle:
{wise person} Sn 1.12
Silversmith:
{purifying the mind} Dhp 239, Sn 4.16
Sick man, taking pity on a:
{hatred} AN 5.162
Slavery, man freed from:
{hindrances} DN 2, DN 11 DN 12, MN 39
Snake:
giving one's hand to a poisonous ~ {sense-restraint} MN 105; pulled from its slough {mind-made body} DN 2, DN 11; shedding its skin {defilements} Sn 1.1; water-snake bites man {wrong grasp of Dhamma} MN 22
Snapping one's fingers:
{equanimity} MN 152
Snare:
{delusion} Dhp 251
Sound of drums:
{clairaudience} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12
Soup tasted by ladle:
{wise person and fool} Dhp 64
Space gathered under the term "house":
{form} MN 28
Spear:
{good-will} SN 20.5
Spider snared in its own web:
{passion} Dhp 347
Spitting:
{equanimity} MN 152
Spring-fed lake:
See Lake.
Staircase build at a crossroads:
{wrong view} DN 9
Stallion.:
See Horse.
Stick thrown up into the air:
{rebirth} SN 15.9
Stone ball thrown into wet clay:
{mindfulness} MN 119
Storekeeper:
{perception} Miln II.3.10
Storm cloud:
{evil} Thag 14.1
Stream:
sinking in the middle of {passion} SN 35.200; snared by a whirlpool {sensuality} SN 35.200; washed up on high ground of {conceit} SN 35.200; See also Shore.
String, ball of:
{craving} AN 4.199; thrown against a door {mindfulness} MN 119; unwinding to its end {end of suffering} DN 2.
Strong man:
nourished on royal food {foolish person} Sn 4.8; extending his arm {appearance/disappearance of devas} DN 20, SN 6.1, SN 6.2; extending his arm {equanimity} MN 152;
Suckling calf going to its mother:
{desire} Dhp 284, Ud 7.4. See also Cow.
Sun:
dispelling the dark {absence of delusion} Iti 88; filling the sky {heedfulness} AN 10.15; filling the sky {awakening} Ud 1.3; speed of {death} SN 20.6
Sunlight:
{merit} Iti 27; {virtue/concentration/discernment} Iti 59; not landing on ground {consciousness} SN 12.64
Surgeon:
see Doctor
Swans:
flying {enlightened ones} Dhp 175; taking off from a lake {mindful ones} Dhp 91.
Swift pair of messengers:
{samatha-vipassana} SN 35.204
Sword drawn from its scabbard:
{mind-made body} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12

T  

Tall building in central square:
{passing away and re-appearance of beings} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39
Tangle:
SN 7.6
Tangled skein:
{craving} AN 4.199
Tank filled with water:
{supranormal powers} AN 5.28
Tendon in fire:
{perception of the unattractive} AN 7.46
Thief shot with spears:
{consciousness} SN 12.63
Thoroughbred.:
See Horse.
Thundercloud:
{conviction} SN 3.24; {discernment} AN 4.102
Tortoise evading a jackal:
{sense-restraint} SN 35.199
Track of ox:
{kamma} Dhp 1
Trades.:
See Crafts and Trades.
Trader watching over a fine steed:
{self-training} Dhp 380
Trail in space:
{arahant} Dhp 254
Travel:
from village to village {recollection of past lives} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39; in desolate country {hindrances} DN 2, DN 11, DN 12, MN 39
Treasure, doorways leading to:
{doors to the Deathless} MN 52, AN 11.17
Tree:
changing {inconstancy} MN 146; gold {the body} Thig 14; growing back after having been cut {craving} Dhp 338; growing on mountain {craving} AN 3.48; haven for birds {conviction} AN 5.38; killed by vine {vice} Dhp 162, {three unskillful roots} AN 3.69; leaning to the east {virtue} SN 55.22; overcome by wind {restraint} Dhp 7; pliant {the mind} AN 1.47; shedding its leaves {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3 (a, b); with delicious fruit {sensuality} MN 54; with roots cut {aggregates} Thig 5.8
Tuning a stringed instrument:
{right effort} AN 6.55
Turban or head on fire, person with:
{aroused persistence} AN 6.20 (a, b), AN 10.51, AN 10.54, Thag 1.39
Turban tightening around one's head:
{pain} MN 36
Turner or turner's apprentice:
{mindfulness} DN 22
Turtle:
lanced by harpoon {the perils of fame} SN 17.3; blind sea turtle poking its head up through a yoke {rarity of human birth} MN 129, SN 56.48
Tusker:
see Elephant.

V  

Village:
empty {internal sense media} SN 35.197; leaving one's {jhāna} MN 105
Vine:
creeping {craving} Dhp 334; killing a tree {vice} Dhp 162
Vipers:
{elements} SN 35.197
Vomit, person eating his or her own:
{fetters} MN 105
Vulture forced to drop his prey:
{sensuality} MN 54

W  

Warrior:
{celibacy} AN 5.75, AN 5.76; {Buddha} Dhp 387; untrained {hindrances} SN 3.24, {worthy monk} AN 4.181
Waste-water pool:
{ignorance} AN 4.178
Water:
container filled to brim {mindfulness} MN 119 (a, b); drawn from a pond {stream-entry} SN 13.2; drops in a hot pan {mindfulness} MN 66, SN 35.203, {equanimity} MN 152; filling a jar {evil} Dhp 121; person sinking in {factors of awakening} AN 7.15; ripples {preoccupations} Sn 4.15; rolling off a lotus leaf {equanimity} MN 152, {dukkha} Sn 4.6, Dhp 336, {sensuality} Dhp 401, {greed} Iti 88;
Weigher holding a scale:
{virtuous conduct} AN 8.54
Well in desert:
{nibbana} SN 12.68
Wet piece of wood:
{mindfulness} MN 119
Wheels:
four {prosperity} AN 4.31; of cart {kamma} Dhp 1
Wild deer:
{arahant} Ud 2.10, {sensuality} MN 26
Wind:
blowing across the sky {feeling} SN 36.12; blowing cotton fluff {dukkha} Sn 3.8; blowing leaves from a tree {awakening} Thag 17.2; coming out of bellows {exertion} MN 36; overcoming a tree {restraint} Dhp 7; unsnared by a net {solitude in the wilderness} Sn 1.3, {wise person} Sn 1.12
Winnowing:
{faults of others} Dhp 252
Woman meeting her father-in-law:
{urgency} MN 28
Wood scrap:
{the body} Dhp 41
Wounded man wandering in jungle:
{restraint} SN 35.206
Wounds, dressing:
{restraint} MN 33, AN 11.18

XYZ  

Yellow leaf:
{aging} Dhp 235; turning green {imperturbable} MN 105
Yokes:
{sense-bases and their objects} SN 35.191, {rarity of human birth} SN 56.48, {sensuality, becoming, etc.} AN 4.10, {discernment} Sn 1.4
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