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Introduction

About two thousand years ago there was a young man living in Rohana not far from the southern capital of Mahāgāma. He came from a family of hunters, and they lived near the great monastery of Gāmendavāla.

When he grew up, he decided to take a wife and raise a family. So he worked hard, trapping creatures in the jungle, selling the meat and making a profit. He was in fact very diligent in this for some years, and he was able to lay up for himself quite a little money and quite a lot of future suffering.

One day he went into the woods as usual, and as he felt hungry, he killed a deer caught in one of his traps, grilled the meat over a fire and ate it. Then he was thirsty but there was no water, so he had to walk a long way to the great monastery of Gāmendavāla. When he got there, he went to where the drinking water was kept; but though ten pitchers were there as usual, he found them all empty. He was parched by then, and losing his temper a little, he exclaimed:

“Well really! All these bhikkhus living here and not a drop of water for visitors!”

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