The Sutra of the Buddha’s Discourse on Impermanence
into Chinese from Sanskrit by Tripitaka Master I Ching of the T'ang
Thus I have heard, at one time the Bhagavan dwelt at Sravasti, in the Jeta Grove, in the Garden of the Benefactor of Orphans and the Solitary. One day the Buddha told the Bhiksus, "In this world there are three dharmas which are not lovable, not bright, not memorable, and not satisfactory. What are these three? They are age, sickness, and death. Oh, Bhiksus, in this world, age, sickness, and death are certainly not lovable, not bright not memorable, and not satisfactory. If there were not age, sickness, and death, the Tathagata, He of Perfect and Equal Enlightenment, would not appear on the earth for the sake of all living beings to lecture the verified Dharma and the matter of the discipline. Thus you should know, age, sickness, and death are not lovable, not bright, not memorable, and not satisfactory. Because of these three troubles, the Tathagata, He of Perfect and Equal Enlightenment appears on earth for the sake of all living beings to lecture the verified Dharma and the matter of the discipline." The Buddha further spoke a gatha saying:
"Outer adornments will eventually deteriorate,
Inner body will likewise degenerate;
Only the unsurpassed Dharma is indestructible,
All intelligent persons should carefully consider,
That age, sickness, and death are undesirable,
a deformed figure and appearance are disgusting.
and beauty remain just temporarily,
long all will be decrepit.
if the life span extends to one hundred years,
no one is exempted from the persecution of impermanence.
sufferings of age, death, and sickness always follow.
they do harm to all living beings."
After the World Honored One spoke this sutra, the Bhiksus, Devas, Nagas, Yaksas, Gandharvas, and Asuras were delighted. The teaching was faithfully accepted and accordingly put into practice.