12. Self

Knowing that one is dear to oneself, one should guard oneself well. For one out of the three watches of the night a wise man should keep watch. 157

First he should establish himself in what is right. Then if he teaches others, the wise man will not be corrupted. 158

If one would only apply to oneself what one teaches others, when one was well disciplined oneself one could train others. It is oneself who is hard to train. 159

One is one's own guardian. What other guardian could one have? With oneself well disciplined one obtains a rare guardian indeed. 160

The evil he has done himself and which had its origin and being in himself breaks a fool, like a diamond breaks a precious stone. 161

A man of great immorality is like a creeper, suffocating the tree it is on. He does to himself just what an enemy would wish him. 162

Things which are wrong and to one's own disadvantage are easily enough done, while what is both good and advantageous is extremely hard to do. 163

The fool, who out of attachment to a wrong view speaks ill of the religion of the enlightened and noble ones who live according to truth, brings forth fruit to his own downfall, like the offspring of the bamboo. 164

By oneself one does evil. By oneself one is defiled. By oneself one abstains from evil. By oneself one is purified. Purity and impurity are personal matters. No one can purify someone else. 165

One should not neglect one's own welfare for that of someone else, however great. When one has understood what one's own welfare really consists of, one should apply oneself to that welfare. 166