by U Lu Pe Win | 216,848 words
This is the English translation of the commentary on the Apadana (Atthakatha), also known as the Visuddhajana-Vilasini. The Buddhist stories known as apadanas refer to biographies of Buddhas, Buddhist monks and nuns. They are found in the Pali Canon (Khuddaka Nikaya), which is the primary canon of Theravada Buddhism. Alternative titles: Visuddhaja...
1.20 While the hermit Sumedha, having thus achieved the spiritual strength of superknowledge in this way, was passing his time enjoying the bliss of his excellent achievement, the world-teacher, known by the name of Dīpaṅkara arose in the world. At the time of His conception, birth, enlightenment, and turning the wheel of Dhamma, the entire ten thousand world-elements shook, trembled and quaked. A mighty uproar occurred. There became apparent thirtytwo omens (pubbanimitta). The hermit Sumedha, who was spending his time, enjoying the bliss of his spiritual achievement (samāpatti) did not hear that sound nor did he see those omens also.
"When, thus, I had achieved my accomplishment and powerful mastery over my senses in the discipline of a recluse, the conqueror and leader of men, known as Dīpaṅkara arose in the world. Since I was absorbed in my delight in deep meditation (jhāna) I did not notice the four omens, at the time of His appearance, His birth, His enlightenment and His preaching the truth.
1.21. At that time, the ten supernaturally powerful (dasabala) Dīpaṅkara Buddha, accompanied by four hundred thousand canker-free (khīṇāsava) disciples, undertaking a gradual journey, in easy stages, arrived at the city of Ramma and took up His residence in the great monastery of Sudassana. The citizens of Ramma heard that Dīpaṅkara, the leader of monks, having attained the highest of supreme enlightenment of an omniscient Buddha, turning the excellent wheel of dhamma, and making a gradual journey in easy stages, had arrived at their Ramma city and was staying in the great Sudassana monastery. They, then, had ghee, fresh butter etc. as well as medicine for ailments, garments and cloth-covers carried along, held in their hands, perfumes, garlands of flowers etc., behaved in such a;way that in whichever direction there was the Buddha, the Dhamma and Samgha, to that direction they proned, bent and sloped down, approached the Master, paid Him homage, offered Him respectfully perfumes, flowergarlands, etc., seated themselves on one suitable side, listened to the preaching of the Dhamma, invited the Buddha and His retinue to the next day meal, rose up from their seats and went away.
1.22. On the next day, they made ready;a great charity, decorated the city, and in making the road for the coming of the Dasabala Buddha to be worthy of Him, they threw in earth-fillings wherever water had eroded the soil (udakabhinna), levelled the surface of the ground, and spread over it, silver-coloured sand. They scattered also parched corn and flowers as well. Flags and festoons, with pieces of cloth differently dyed in colours, were also hoisted and shown about. Leafy plantain trees as well as rows of earthen jars, brimful of water, were set up. On that occasion, the hermit Sumedha went up into the sky from his hermitage and as he passed over those people in the air, saw them laughing with joy, descended from the sky, stood on one side and asked the people what, indeed, the matter was, thus:- "Oh my men! For whom are you adorning the uneven road here?".
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"Having invited the Tathāgata at the outskirt region, people with joyful heart cleaned the road for His coming. On that occasion, I left my own retreat; shaking my reed raiment, I then went up the clouds. Seeing people getting emotional, laughing joyously and happily, I descended from the sky and asked the people there and then:- For whom was the road cleaned and the same made straight, this big-body of men, excitedly joyful and rearing with laughter (añjasam vatumāyanam)?
1.23. People replied "Venerable Sumedha! Did you not know? The omniscient Dasabala, Buddha Dīpaṅkara, having attained supreme enlightenment, turning the wheel of dhamma, going on his round of journey, had arrived at our city, and has now been staying in the great Sudassana monastery. We had invited that Glorious One. We are now making the road to be worthy, by adorning, for the coming of this glorious Buddha. Then the hermit Sumedha thought to himself: "Difficult, indeed, it is to hear, in this world, even this much sound, namely, Buddha. How much more so, the appearance of Buddha? It would be well for me, to make the road worthy for the Dasabala Buddha, jointly with these people." He then addressed those people: "If you all are making this road worthy for the Buddha, do give me a certain section; together with you, I also, shall level up the road." They consented saying: 'very well' handed over a well-demarcated water-eroded area, saying: "you had better level up this depression," since they all know that the , Sumedha, had supernatural power. The hermit, Sumedha, overtaken by zest over his contemplative thought (ārammaṇam) on Buddha and thought to himself: "I am capable of levelling up this piece of land by means of my magical power. Such a mending will not fully please me;it behoves me, now, to labour myself physically." Having thought over thus, he himself carried loose earth and threw it down in that eroded area.
1.24. His levelling work in that small section had not yet finished, when the dasabala Dīpaṅkara, surrounded by four hundred thousand disciples, of His canker-free arahants, who were spiritually very powerful and had gained super-knowledge, entered upon that evenly levelled and well-decorated road, like unto a lion, ready for its activity on the surface of a delightful stone slab, with the incomparable glory of Buddha, amidst homage paid, honour done and offerings made by beings divine and human, the former with celestial scents, garlands, etc., playing divine music and singing together divine songs, and the latter with human perfumes, flower-garlands, etc., and playing human music. The hermit Sumedha opened his eyes, looked at the personality of the dasabala Buddha, adorned with thirty two characteristics of a great personage, brightened by eighty smaller signs, circumspectly surrounded by fathom-wide glow, whose physique had attained the excellent physical proportions with the solid six-coloured rays of the Buddha issuing from it, swinging round in diffusion and radiation, forming themselves into couples and pairs, (yugala yugala bhūtā) similar to different categories of creepers of lightning (vijjulatā) on the blue sky-surface (gaganatala) of gem colour, and came upon this decision: "Proper it is, for me now, to sacrifice my life to the Dasabala Buddha. Let the Glorious One not tread upon mud. Let Him go, along with four hundred thousand canker-free disciples, treading on my back as if going on a bridge built of gem boards. Such an action will be conducive towards my benefit and happiness for a long period of time". Having made this decision, the hermit untied hi hair-braids, spread over black-coloured mud, his antelope skin, hi braided-hair-circle and his reed raiment, and they lay himself down like a gem-decorated bridge on the top of the mud.
Therefore it has been stated:-
"When asked by me, they informed me thus: 'There has appeared in the world, the Buddha known by the name of Dīpaṅkara, the conqueror, who has no superior, and is the leader and patron of men. For Him, the road is being cleaned up and the same straightened up.
"The moment I heard the word Buddha, my zest arose there and then. I enjoyed mental delight, as I recited the words: Buddha! Buddha!
"There I stood and thought, pleased and excited saying to myself: 'Here I shall sow seeds, let not there be delay, even for a moment.
"If you all are cleaning for the Buddha, give me also an opportunity to do so. I also shall do the cleaning of the road and straightening of the same.
"When they gave me a chance to clean the road. Mentally marking as Buddha! Buddha! I cleaned the road, then.
"Before I finished my portion of road-repair, the great sage Dīpaṅkara, the conqueror, together with four hundred thousand such stainless and disciples as had gained six kinds of super-knowledge, came upon the road.
"Joyful gods and men turned out to meet; many drums sounded and congratulations conferred.
"Celestial beings saw the human-beings and so did men the gods. Both of them all followed behind the Buddha with their clasped hands in adoration.
"Celestial beings with heavenly musical in- struments and human beings with human band of music, both classes of them played their music and followed the Tathāgata. Celestial beings went up the heavenly height of sky and scattered down celestial mandārava together with Pārichattaka coral blossoms and lotus flowers, in every direction. Heavenly- beings went up the heavenly heights of the sky and showered down heavenly sandalwood powder and all-round excellent perfume in every direction. Human folks went about on the surface of the ground and threw up in every direction fragrant white and yellow Campaka flowers, sweet-scented Salala blossoms, Asoka flowers, red Fairy-tree and Punnāga flowers, as well as Ketaka blossoms. With my loose hair there, I spread out my skin seat and reed raiment on the mud and then I lay myself down with my face downward. Let the Buddha, together with His disciples go treading upon me; let them not tread upon that mud. It will be for my welfare.
1.25. That hermit Sumedha, however, while lying prone on the top of the mud, opened his eyes again and observing properly the glory of the Buddha, the dasabala Dīpaṅkara, reflected thus:- "Should I so desire, I could now burn away all the forms of depravity (kilesa), become a new member of the organisation of Buddha's disciples and enter the city of Ramma. But to me, there is no such thing as the matter of attaining the immortal happiness (nibbāna), after burning away the depravity (kilesa), in the category of a nonentity. Would it not be well for me to attain the paramount peak of enlightment (paramābhisambodhi) like this Dasabala Dīpaṅkara, facilitate the multitudes to get on board the ship of truth (Dhamma), send them all across the ocean of repeated rebirths and afterwards only, I myself would enter complete nibbāna. This would of course be appropriate for me. Thereafter, with the combination of the eight conditions (dhamma) he lay himself down making the resolution (abhinīhāra) to become Buddha.
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"It occurred to my mind thus, while I was lying on the ground: 'Should I so desire now, I could burn away my depravity (kilesa). What is the use for me, here, to realize the truth (dhamma) as an unknown individual? Having myself attained omnis- cience, I would send across all my fellow folks along with the devas (sadevakam). By this my devoted deed (adhikāra) done towards the Buddha, the most excellent man, may I attain omniscience and send across many people. Having cut off the stream of repeated rebirths (Samsāra) and destroyed three kinds of existences, I would myself mount upon the ship of dhamma and send across my fellow folks along with the devas (sadevakam).
Wherefore to an individual who, however, aspires to become Buddha -
His aspiration accomplishes with the combined occurrence of eight requisite conditions
- becoming a human-being;
- the gaining of male sex;
- the circumstantial cause;
- seeing the Master (Satthā);
- renunciation to become a monk;
- possession of noble qualities; 7. devoted deed of service;
- eager desire.
1.26. Established only in the existence of a human being, the aspiration of an individual, who aimed at Buddhahood is well accomplished. On the other hand, the prayer of a dragon or of a swift-winged garula bird or of a divinity or of sakka, the king of devas is not efficacious. In the human existence also, the prayer of an individual, who has with him male sex- organ only becomes efficacious; that of a woman, or a eunuch, or of one who has no sex organs, or of an individual, who has the sex organs of both male and female, does not materialise. Even in the case of a male man, his aspiration becomes accomplished only if there exists sufficient circumstantial cause for the attainment of arahatship in that very life of his; but not otherwise. For proper equipment of sufficient circumstantial cause also, the prayer must be made only in the presence of a living Buddha so that his prayer may be efficacious; On the other hand the prayer that is made, on the demise (parinibbūta) of the Buddha, or in the presence of a shrine, or at the foot of the Bodhi tree, does not come to fruition. Even for the aspiration made in the presence of Buddhas, only that one, which is done, by one, who is established and recognised as renounced recluse, becomes perfected; but not so, is the one of an individual, who is understood as a householder. Even that of a recluse, only the aspiration of one, who had gained the eight spiritual attainments (samāpatti) and five forms of super-knowledge (abhiññā) gets accomplishment; but not so is that of one, who is devoid of the said virtuous attainments. By virtuous attainment also is that by which one's own life stands completely dedicated to the Buddhas. It is on account of this service of his, the aspiration of one who has done his devoted deed of service, fully comes to perfection, but not because of anything else. Of the one who has fully done his devoted deed of service also, the prayer of such a one as he who has great desire, endeavour, effort and thorough search only becomes efficacious; but not that of another.
1.27. There, in that context, this is the illustration of being of great desire:- If, indeed, whoever were to think thus:- I am capable of going thither, crossing over with my own physical strength the entire bowel of this world cycle, which had become concentrated into a single solid, he arrives at Buddhahood. Or else, whoever, however, is capable of going to the bank beyond by going on foot, treading upon the entire bowel of the world cycle, completely covered with bamboo bushes after removing them, he attains Buddhahood. Or else, whoever, however, is capable of going to the bank beyond by going on foot, treading upon a mixture of javelins and sharp points of spears and stamping down javelins all over the bowels of the world cycle, he attains Buddhahood. Or else, whoever, however, is capable of reaching the other bank by crossing over the entire bowels of the world cycle, treading with his feet on the surface filled and levelled even with burning coal, he attains Buddhahood. Whoever considers that there is none among these which is difficult to be done by himself; saying: 'I shall cross over this also and reach the further shore'. In this way, he is himself properly endowed with great desire, endeavour, effort and thorough search (pariyetthi). The aspiration of such a soul alone accomplishes but not that of another. Therefore, the hermit Sumedha brought together these eight requisites made a resolve to become Buddha and lay himself down.
1.28. Dīpaṅkara, the Glorious One also, came and stood at the head of the hermit Sumedha, when he saw the hermīt Sumedha lying on the top of the mud with his eyes kept open, his eyes endowed with five pleasing colours, like unto the opening of the bejewelled lineage, invoked His knowledge of the future saying to Himself: "This hermit made a resolve for Buddhahood and laid himself down; Will this one's aspiration be accomplished or not? Thus reflecting, He came to know thus: "A hundred thousand aeons (kappa), over, and above four sets of innumerable aeons (kappa) from now, having passed over that period of time, this one will become Buddha, Gotama by name." In the midst of the assembly, while yet standing, He made this prophesy: "Do you all notice this hermit of noble austerity, who lay himself down on the surface of the mud? the disciples replied: "yes, we did, Venerable Sir!" "this one lay himself down after resolving to become Buddha, Gotama by name. In that physique of his, however, he will be the resident of the city of Kapilavatthu. His mother's name will be Māyā devī. His father will be known as King Suddhodana. his chief disciple will be Upatissa and his second disciple will be known as Kolita. The serving attendant of that Buddha will be Khemā Therī and His second female disciple will be Uppalavanā Therī by name. This hermit then, when his intelligence would become fully matured, would make a great renunciation, lead an extremely strenuous life of austerity, receive as alms-food, milk-rice at the foot of the Nigrodha banyan tree, enjoy his meal on the bank of the Nerañjara river, go up the terrace of the bodhi tree and become fully enlightened Buddha at the foot of the Assattha tree.
Therefore, it has been stated:
"Dīpanṅkara, the knower of the world, the giver of sacrificial gifts stood at the top end of my head and spoke these words about me: 'You see this hermit with the braided hair and of austerity! In a far future kappa, entirely incalcula- ble from now, he will become Buddha. Born, he will be, in the delightful city called Kapila. The Tathāgata will renounce the world and leading a spiritual life of strenuous austerity he will do deeds difficult to be done. Seated under the goat-herd's banyan tree, the Tathāgata will accept there the milk-rice and go towards the Nerañjara river. That Conqueror would enjoy the meal of milk-rice on the bank of Nerañjara and thereafter would approach the base of the bodhitree walking along the well-prepared path. The unsurpassa- ble, thereafter, will circumambulate the terrace of the bodhi tree and the man of great fame will become the fully enlightened Buddha at the foot of the Assattha tree. The Mother who gives birth to this one will be Māyā by name. The father will be known as Suddhodana and this hermit will become Gotama Buddha. His chief disciples will be Upatissa and Kolita, free from cankers, (āsavagen) devoid of lust, (rāga), whose minds are tranquilled and self-composed; the attendant Ānanda, by name, will attend on that conqueror. His chief female disciples will be Khemā and Uppalavaṇṇā, free from cankers (āsava), devoid of lust (rāga) tran- quil-minded and self-composed (samāhita). The Bodhi tree of that glorious Buddha is called Assattha".
1.29. On hearing that prophecy, the hermit Sumedha became delighted in mind with the thought: "I am told that my aspiration will be accomplished. The great crowd of people, hearing the words of the Dasabala Dīpaṅkara to the effect that the hermit Sumedha was the seed (bīja) and sapling (aṅkura) of Buddha, became full of joy and gladness. Thus also, they thought: "Just as, namely, people, in crossing a river, not being able to pass over by a straight landing-place, have to cross by a lower landing-place, exactly in the same way, we also, not gaining the right path and fruition in the dispensation of this Buddha Dīpaṅkara also, praised the future Buddha (Bodhisatta), honoured him with eight handfuls of flowers, circumambulated him and departed thence. Those four hundred thousand canker-free (khīṇāsava) disciples also honoured the Bodhisat with perfumes and garlands, circumambulated him, and departed thence. Celestial and human beings, on the other hand, likewise paid their homage by bowing down and departed.
1.30. After the departure of all, the Bodhisat rose up from his lying pose and sat down in a cross-legged posture on top of the heap of flowers, saying to himself: "I shall investigate or seek what perfections (pāramī)" to look for. When the Bodhisat was so seated, celestial beings in the entire ten thousand world-cycles offered their congratulations and especially eulogised the Bodhisat with all kinds of eulogies thus: "Venerable hermit Sumedha! When previous Bodhisats of old were seated in crosslegged posture, investigating perfections, whatever, namely foregoing omens presented themselves, all of them have become apparent now. Undoubtedly, you will become Buddha. We all know this: 'To whomever these signs occur, he is sure to be Buddha'. You might make your own exertion firm and seized the opportunity"
Therefore, it has been stated:
Human and celestial beings on hearing this prophetic statement of the peerless great sage (mahesī) were greatly glad (āmoditā), to be told that this hermit was the seed of Buddha. Sounds of acclamation prevailed and there was clapping of hands and cheering (hasanti) also. Along with devas the entire ten thousand world- cycle of men bowed with clasped hands. should we suffer failure in the dispensation of this world-protector (Lokanātha), in time not yet come, we shall have the chance to become (bound for nibbāna) in the presence of this (hermit). Just as people, crossing a river, having failed (to reach) the opposite bank, passed over the great river after taking the crossing at the great river after taking the crossing at the lower fording-place, exactly in the same way, should we all miss this Conqueror for our emancipation, in the distant future we might be (emancipated) in the presence of this one. Dīpaṅkara, the Knower of the world (lokavidū), the worthy recipient of sacrificial gifts, after announcing my deed (Kamma) lifted His right foot. All the sons of the Conqueror, who were there, circumambulated me. Human beings, dragons and Gandhabba fairies paid their homage to me and took their departure. When my seeing of the World Protector together with his organisation of monks was over, I then rose up from my seat with my gladdened and joyful mind. I became blissful with happiness, I was gladdened with joy; over-whelmed with zest also, I then crossed my legs, Seated cross-legged I then reflected thus: 'At my will and pleasure I can get into any state of the four Jhaānas and have arrived at perfection in super-knowledge. There are no hermits to equal me in the ten thousand worlds, I have no equal in magical powers. Such sort of happiness have I gained'. To me in my cross-legged posture, inhabitants of the ten thousand universes made a loud proclamation: "you will definitely become Buddha: Whatever omens were made visible to the previous bodhisattas in their excellent cross-legged postures, they are now apparent: Cold becomes dispelled and heat gets extinguished. Such phenomena are now to be seen. Certainly, you will become Buddha". "The ten thousand world-elements become silent and undisturbed such phenomena present themselves today. Surely you will become Buddha". Strong winds do not blow, rivers stop flowing; such phenomena occur today. You will definitely become Buddha". "On that ancient occasion flowering trees and plants growing on dry land and wet water became bloomful of flowers; such a phenomenon does occur today also entirely. Definite it is that you will become Buddha". "On similar significant occasions previously, fruit-bearing flora, whether they were trees or climbers, they all bore fruits; they also are all full of fruits now. It is sure, therefore, you will become Buddha".
"Previously then, heavenly and earthly jewels shone with splendour; those selfsame jewels do show their shining splendour now also. It is certain, therefore, you will become Buddha".
"Previously, then, human and divine musical instruments sounded; now also both kinds of music are at their highest pitch. You will surely become Buddha".
"Previously, then, there showered down from the sky above, variegated flowers; the selfsame flowers are raining down now also. Certainly indeed, you will become Buddha.""The mighty ocean (then) receded, the great earth, ten thousand (yojanas in extent), quaked; both of them, now also, are extremely noisy. You are sure to become Buddha".
"Previously the, flames of fire in hells, ten thousand (yojanas in extent) were extinguished; now also, those self-same flames of fire are cooled down. Surely, you will become Buddha."
"The sun was (then) stainless and all the stars showed themselves; they are similarly seen now also. Certainly, you will become Buddha."
"Previously then, there was water in spite of absence of rain shower, and it sprouted up from the earth; now also water is springing up from the ground. You will surely become Buddha."
"Animals, living in holes and caves came out from their own lairs (then); now also they rejected their dungeon. Definitely, you will become Buddha."
"Previously then, there was no aversion amongst living-beings. They were well-contented. Now, also, they all are self-satisfied. Surely, you will become Buddha."
"There was then cessation of ailments. Hunger also was eliminated. Today also they are to be seen (or this is . It is sure, that you will become Buddha."
"Clinging desire then became minute; anger and dark delusion destroyed. Today also, all of them are gone elsewhere. Certainly, you will become Buddha."
"Danger, then, did not occur; today also this condition is seen. We know by that characteristic that you will definitely become Buddha."
"Dust did not fly up high above. Now also, this is seen. By that characteristic, we know that you will surely become Buddha."
"Undesirable smell departed; celestial perfume filled the air with fragrance (then). Now also the selfsame sweet scent blows with the breeze. Surely you will become Buddha."
"Except the incorporeal ones all the divine beings showed themselves (then). All of them are to be seen now also. Certainly you will become Buddha."
"Previously, then, all were visible, namely, as far as purgatory. Now also they all are visible. Definitely, you will become Buddha."
"Previously, then, walls, doors and rocks were no hindrances (āvaranā). Now, also, they have become empty sky-space. Surely, you will become Buddha."
"They, at that moment, there did not exist any death or birth (i.e. passing away or springing up), Do catch hold of your exertion firmly; do not give up, but do go ahead. We also know well about this. You will certainly become Buddha."
1.31. The Bodhisat, having heard the prophecy of the Dasabala Dīpaṅkara and the statement of the divine beings from the ten thousand world-cycles, became all the more roused up with energetic exertion and considered thus:- "It is not in the nature of Buddhas to speak vainly. There is no mistake in the statement of Buddhas. Just as, indeed, there is certainty in the dropping down of a clod (leddu) thrown up the sky, certainty of death to one who is born, certainly of sunrise when night comes to an end, certainty of roaring the lion's roar for the lion, which has come out from its lair, certainty of inevitable phenomenon of discharging her heavy load by a woman with heavy pregnancy, so also there is certainty, namely, in the prophetic statement of Buddhas not made in vain. Sure enough, I shall become Buddha".
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"Having heard both the prophecy of the Buddha and the statement of inhabitants of ten thousand world- cycles, I then became satisfied, joyful and glad and considered thus: Never is their nature that Buddhas make statements that break asunder. neither do Con- querors speak in vain nor is there untruth in Buddhas. I shall, surely, become Buddha. Just as a clod (leddu) thrown up high toward the sky does definitely fall down to the ground, so also the statement of most excellent Buddhas is definite and permanent. For the Buddhas there is no utterance of untruth, and so I am to become a Buddha sure and certain. Just as death is sure and certain to all living beings, in the same way, sure and certain, is the statement of most excellent Buddhas. Just as the roaring of the lion, which has come out of its lair, is certain, so also sure and certain is the statement of most excellent Buddhas. Just as the delivery of a burden-like baby is definite for the living-being who has arrived at (the mother's womb) so also the statement of most excellent Buddhas is definite and lasting.
1.32. He made this self-determination thus: "Sure and certain shall I become Buddha".
Investigating the entire spiritual element (dhammadhātu) in its serial order, in order to carry out the conditions (dhamma) that go to make a Buddha, saying to himself: 'What, indeed, are conditions (dhamma) that go to make a Buddha?, what is there, above or below, or facing direct or corners', he visualised first of all the perfection of offering charity repeatedly adhered to by his predecessor bodhisats, and admonished himself thus:- "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil, first of all, the perfection of offering charity. Just as, indeed, a turned-upside-down water-jar does but spill (vamati) water, making the container entirely empty and does not accept again, exactly in the same way, you will become Buddha, seated at the base of the Bodhi tree, after giving away, leaving nothing, all that was wanted and needed, to all comers with their individual requests, regardless of your own wealth or retainers of wife along, with children or bodily limbs, big and small". Thus did he make his mind well-established by making firm the perfection in offering charity, first of all.
Therefore, it has been stated;
"Now, I investigate the deeds (dhamma), done by (previous) Buddhas, hither, thither, above, below, the ten directions, as far as the deed-element (dhammadhātu) extend. Investigating than, I perceived, first of all, the perfection in offering charity, the great procedure (patha) serially practised by previous Great Sages. Should you desire to attain full enlightment (bodhi), go, first of all, now, by this path of perfection in offering charity, after under- taking to do it firmly. Just as a well-filled water-jar, when down-turned for anybody, spills its water completely and does not look after (it), all over there, in the same way, when you see beggars, whether inferior, superior or indifferent, do give charity, leaving nothing with you, like a water-jar turned upside down."
1.33. Then, when he reasoned out further on, saying to himself: 'There must be, indeed, not this much alone, the deeds done preliminarily by previous Buddhas', he saw the second the perfection in moral precepts (sīla); and said to himself: 'Wise Sumedha! From now onwards, you should fulfil the perfection in moral precepts (sīla). Just as, indeed, the beast with bushy tail called Camarī protects its own tail-hair regardless of its life, in the same way, you also, from now on, should become Buddha looking after your moral precepts (sīla) only, regardless of your own life'. Thus, he undertook upon (or made himself steadfast) rendering himself the second perfection of moral precept (sīla), firm.
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"These (preliminary) deeds of previous Buddhas (Buddhadhamma) would not be this much only. I shall investigate other similar deeds for the maturity of my enlightenment (bodhi). Investigating then, I perceived the second perfection of precepts devotedly practised by previous Great Sages. Now, if you want to attain enlightenment (bodhi), precede with the perfection of precepts (sīla) undertaking upon yourself steadfastly by making this second on firm. Just as the beast, belonging to the species with priceless hairy-tail courts death thither, where- ever its tail gets entangled, rather than spoil its tail, similarly so, you should completely fulfil the precepts in their four stages (bhūmi). Keep a thorough watch ever your precepts at all times like the yak ox (camarī) over its tail".
1.34. Then, when the reasoned out still further on, saying to himself: There must be indeed, not this much only, such deeds as were done by previous Buddhas, he saw the third perfection in renunciation (nekkhamma), and said to himself this: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in renunciation. Just as, indeed, a man living for a long time in a house of bondage, has no affection for that place; moreover, he gets indeed, dissatisfied even, and he becomes desirous of not living there anymore. Exactly in the same way, you also, identifying all existences with a place of imprisonment, being dissatisfied with all existences, should become bent upon escape and look forward toward renunciation. In this way, you will become Buddha".
Therefore, it has been stated:
"Not this much only these deeds of previous Buddhas would be. I shall investigate other ones also whichever make my enlightenment (bodhi) mature." Investigating the, I perceived the third perfection in renunciation, devotedly adhered to by previous Great Sages. 'Now, take upon yourself well and firmly, the third perfection in renunciation and go on thus, if you want to attain bodhi, to become Buddha.' "Just as a man in a prison house, living there long with standing discomfort does not beget any attachment there, but seeks his escape only, similarly you, had better look upon all existences as resembling prison-houses and look forward toward renunciation for entire escape from existences."
1.35. Then, when he reasoned out still further on, thinking: 'There must, indeed, be not this much only the deeds done by previous Buddhas;, he saw the fourth perfection in knowledge (paññā pāramī), and this occurred to him: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in knowledge (paññā pāramī) also. Without avoiding anyone among inferiors, equals (majhima) and superiors, you should approach all wise men also and ask questions. Just as, indeed, a monk who maintains himself on begged food in his own bowl only, does not avoid any donor amongst such categories of families namely inferior, etc., goes on his begging beat from house to house, continuously, and obtains quickly his sustenance, exactly in the same way you also approach all wise men and ask questions and you will become Buddha". Thereupon, he established himself making the fourth perfection in knowledge (paññāpāramī) firm.
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"The deeds of Buddhas could not be, indeed, this much only. I shall investigate other deeds also that might mature my bodhi. Investigating then, I saw the fourth perfection in knowledge, consistently carried out by previous Great Sages. You now proceed to perfection in knowledge, which is the fourth, taking it upon yourself and making it firmly fast. Just as a bhikkhu in his beat obtains his sustenance in such a way that he does not omit any (house of) families (discriminating against them as) inferior superior or middle-class, similarly (so) you had better proceed toward perfection in knowledge, comprehensively questioning wise and enlightened people at all times.
1.36. Then, when he reasoned out still further on, thinking: 'Not this much only, must have been the deeds done by previous Buddhas', he saw the fifth perfection in exertion (vīriya pāramī), and this idea occurred to him: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in exertion (vīriya pāramī) also. Just as, indeed, the king of beasts, the lion, is firmly energetic in all his postures and movements, similarly so, you also will become Buddha by being firmly energetic, adhering to exertion regarding all your postures and movements in all your existences." Accordingly, he made up his mind making the fifth perfection in exertion (vīriya pāramī) firm.
Therefore, it has been stated:
"The deeds of Buddhas must, indeed, be not this much only; I shall investigate and find out other such deeds as would mature my bodhi. Investigating then, I found the fifth perfection in exertion con- sistantly carried out by Great Sages previously. You might proceed now to this fifth perfection in exertion (vīriya pāramī), taking it upon yourself and making it firm. Just as the leader of deer, the lion, never lacks exertion whether seated, standing or walking about, and always has a lofty mind, similarly so, you will attain your own full enlightenment and become Buddha by proceeding toward the perfection in exertion, and promoting firm exertion in all your existences."
1.37. Then when he reasoned out still further on, thinking: 'Not this much only, must have been the deeds done by previous Buddhas,' he saw the sixth perfection in patience (khantī pāramī), and this idea occurred to him: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in patience. You should be equally patient towards those who honour you as well as those who disregard you. Just as, indeed, to on the ground people throw down things both pure and impure and consequent upon that action, the earth does neither get attracted nor repulsed; it exercises patience; it bears and endures even; exactly in the same way, you also will become Buddha by being patient toward those who respect you as well as those who treat you with contempt." Accordingly, he made up his mind making the sixth perfection in patience (Khantī pāramī), firm.
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"The deeds of Buddhas must, indeed, be not this must only, I shall investigate and find out other such deeds as would mature my bodhi. Investigating then, I found the sixth perfection in patience, consistently carried out by Great Sages, previously. You had better take upon yourself making this sixth perfection firm now and you will attain full Buddha- hood if your mind is undivided but sincere there. Just as, namely, the earth;bears all that is thrown down upon it, the clean as well as the dirty and does not do any malice thereby, similarly so, you also will attain your own bodhi by proceeding with the practice of perfection in patience and by being indifferent to all respects paid and contempts cast.
1.38. Then, he reasoned out still further on, thinking 'Not this much only must have been the deeds done by previous Buddhas', he saw the seventh perfection in truth (sacca pāramī) and this idea occurred to him: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in truth. Do not tell, namely, deliberate lie, under the influence of desire, etc., for the benefit of wealth, even if ( is dropping down on your head. Just as, (yathā nāma) indeed, the star of healing (osadhi tārakā), namely, never goes along another it abandoning its own orbiting course in all seasons, but keeps on orbiting along its own track, exactly in the same way, you also, will become Buddha, only by not speaking, any falsehood, forsaking truth". Accordingly, he made up his mind, making the seventh perfection in truth firmly.
Therefore, it has been stated:
The deeds of Buddhas must, indeed, be not this much only, I shall investigate and find out other such deeds as would mature my bodhi. Investigation then, I found the seventh perfection in truth, con- sistently carried out by Great Sages previously. You should take upon yourself, making this seventh perfection firm now and you will attain full Buddha- hood if your speech is not dubious but sincere there. Just as, namely, the star of healing (osadhi), along with similar other heavenly bodies, whether in the rainy season or other seasons, does not deviate from its orbital path, similarly you also will attain full Buddhahood by proceeding along the path of perfection in truth, without deviating from the path of truths.
1.39. Then, when the reasoned out still further on, thinking: 'Not this much only, must have been the deeds done by previous Buddhas', he saw the eighth perfection in resolution (adhitthāna) and this idea occurred to him: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in resolution. You should be unshakable on such resolution, as made by you. Just as, indeed, a mountain-hill, when struck by winds blowing to it from all directions, does neither tremble nor shake, but stands in its place only, similarly, you also will become Buddha by being unshakable in your own self-determination." Accordingly, he made up his mind making the eight perfection in self-determination firm.
Therefore, it has been stated:-
"The deeds of Buddhas must, indeed, be not this much only; I shall investigate and find out other such deeds as would mature my bodhi. Investigating then, I found the eighth perfection in self-determination, consistently carried out by Great Sages, previously. You had better take upon yourself, making this eighth perfection firm now and you will attain full Buddha- hood by your becoming unshakable there. Just as also a well-established, unshakable rocky mountain does neither tremble nor shake due to strong winds, but remains standing in its own place only, similarly, you had better also be unshakable always in your resolution, walking along the path of perfection in resolution and you will attain full Buddhahood."
1.40 Then, when he reasoned out still further on, thinking: 'Not this much only, must have been the deeds done by previous Buddhas', he saw the ninth perfection in loving kindness (mettā pāramī) and this idea occurred to him: "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in loving kindness. You should be of one mind to those who are beneficial to you as well as to the who are not beneficial to you. Just, as, indeed, its cool condition to an evil person as well as to a good , equating the two as one and the same, similarly, you also Buddha, being of one mind, with a heart of living kindness toward living beings" Accordingly, he made up his making firm, the ninth perfection in loving kindness.
Therefore, it has been stated:
"The deeds of Buddha must, indeed, be not this much only; I shall investigate and find out other such deeds as would mature my bodhi. Investigating then, I found the ninth perfection in loving kindness, consistently carried out by Great Sages, previously. You might (or had better) take upon yourself, making the ninth perfection firm now; if you want to attain full Buddhahood, rather be peerless in loving kindness. Just as, the water pervades the good and the bad people equally with coolness, washing away dusty impurities, similarly, you also will attain full Buddhahood by proceeding along the path of loving kindness in developing loving kindness equally towards these who are beneficial to you or those who are not.
1.41. Then, when he reasoned out still further on, thinking: 'Not this much only, must have been the deeds done by previous Buddhas", he saw the tenth perfection in equanimity (upekkhā pāramī) and this idea occurred to him" "Wise Sumedha! From now on, you should fulfil the perfection in equanimity. In prosperity as well as in adversity, you should be indifferent only. Just as, indeed, the earth is indifferent when things clean or dirty are thrown on it, exactly in the same way, you also will become Buddha by being indifferent amidst prosperity and adversity" Accordingly, he made up his mind, making firm the tenth perfection in equanmity".
Therefore, it has been stated:
The deeds of Buddha must, indeed, be not this much only; I shall investigate and find out other such deeds as would mature my bodhi. Investigating then, I found the tenth perfection in equanimity, carried out consistently by Great Sages, previously. You had better take upon yourself making the tenth perfection firm now, and you will attain full Buddhahood by being well-balanced like a pair of scales. Just as, namely the earth looks on indifferently on both the clean and dirty matter thrown down on it, being free from anger and favour, similarly so, you also had better be always like a pair of scales well-balanced, amidst happiness and misery. Proceeding the path of perfection in equanimity you will attain full Buddhahood.
1.42 He, therefore, thought: "In this world, this much are the deeds done by Buddhas, which ought to be fulfilled by Bodhisats for the perfect maturity of their bodhi. There is nothing else besides the ten perfections. These ten perfections also are not in the sky, above Neither are they on the earth below. They are not in the east neither on the other directions. They are, however, in me alone, stationed inside my heart." In this way, seeing their being stationed in his heart, he made all of them also firm and well-determined. Grasping them again and again, he meditated on them in direct and reverse order. Seizing at the extreme end, the beginning was caused to be reached. Catching hold of the beginning, the extreme end was caused to be reached. Seizing at the centre, he caused the end on both sides to be reached. Seizing at both the extremities, he brought the matter to an end making the middle to be reached. 'The entire sacrifice of external treasure constitutes perfection in charity (cānapāramī), all round sacrifice of bodily limbs constitutes minor, but higher perfection in charity and thorough sacrifice of one's own life constitutes absolutely highest perfection in charity', thinking thus, he meditated upon altogether thirty perfections, comprising the ten ordinary perfections, the ten higher perfections and the ten highest perfections, as if oiling and repeating and as if whirling the mighty ocean of the world-cycle, making the massive Meru mountain the head. While he was thus meditating upon the ten perfections, this great earth, which is as dense as two hundred thousand leagues (yojanas), over and above four nahutas, shook, trembled and quaked, resounding with noisy echoing sounds, resembling either a bundle of reeds being trodden upon by an elephant, or sugar-cane being pressed down in a squeezing machine, due to the power of his deed. The same great earth reeled also like a potter's wheel and oil-making machine.
Therefore, it has been stated:
"So much only are there, in the world, all the deeds that make your bodhi mature; over and above them, there is nothing else. You had better establish yourself firmly there. When these deeds, their nature, essence and characteristics are meditated upon, the earth, ten thousand (leagues) in extent, quaked owing to the power of the deed. The earth shakes and rumbles resembling sugar-cane in its pressing machine. Similar to a wheel in an oil-producing machine, so shakes the earth.
1.43 Because of the quaking of the great earth, residents of the city of Ramma, being unable to keep themselves properly standing, fell down here and there, as if released and driven out of a spacious hall by a stormy whirl-wind. Water jars etc., as well as potters' vessels, as they moved about, hit each other and became broken to pieces and reduced to powder. The panicstricken public approached the Great Teacher and asked thus: "O! Glorious One! What indeed is this? Is this the turning round of the mighty dragon or the turning round of any one among devilish demons? Indeed, we all do not know about this. nevertheless, we all, the entire mass, are distressed, indeed. How is that, indeed? Will there be evil for this would? Otherwise, will there be good? Please explain this matter to us." Thereupon, on hearing what they said, the Master spoke thus: "You all need not be afraid. Do not be thinking anxiously. There is no danger for you, on account of this occurrence. That wise man Sumedha, whom I prophesied today that he would become Buddha, Gotama by name, in time to come, is, at the present moment, meditating upon the ten perfections. While he is stirring and meditating upon them, due to the power of his deeds, the entire ten thousand world-elements shook and rumbled simultaneously."
Therefore, it has been stated:
"As big as the assembly of people offering males to the Buddha were present, that assembly there, trembling all over, sought escape and lay on the ground. Thousands of water-jars and many hundreds of pots and pans, colliding each other crushed into pieces and powder there. The big body of people, agitated, shaken up, frightened, staggered and wavering-minded, came together and approached the Buddha Dīpaṅkara, with these words: 'O Lord of Insight! What will happen to the world? Is it good or evil? The entire world is distressed. Please dispel that disaster.' Then the Great Sage Dīpaṅkara notified to them: 'In this earth-quake, be you confident, do not be afraid. This one about whom today I prophesied that he would become Buddha in the world is medi- tating upon the deed, consistently carried out by previous conquerors. When he is meditating upon the deed conducive towards becoming Buddha in its entire entity, consequently, this ten thousand extensive earth along with heaven quaked."
1.44. The big body of people became satisfied and joyful on hearing the words of the Buddha, brought with them garlands of flowers, perfumes and sweet scents, came out of the city of Ramma, approached the Bodhisat, honoured him with garlands, sweet scents, etc., paid homage to him circumambulated him and entered the Ramma city. The Bodhisat also meditated upon the ten perfections, made his exertion firm, formed his own resolution and rose up from his seated seat.
Therefore, it is stated:
"Having heard the words of the Buddha, their minds then and there became tranquil. All the people approached me and paid their homage to me also again. Taking upon myself the virtues of the Buddha. I made my mind firm. Having paid my homage to the Buddha Dipankara, I then rose up from my seat.
1.45 Thereafter, the celestial beings of the entire ten thousand world-cycles assembled together, honoured the Bodhisat as the latter rose from his seat, with celestial garlands and scents, paid homage to him and proclaimed ceremonial praises by saying in the beginning: "Venerable hermit Sumedha! Great aspiration was made by you, today, at the feet of the Dasabala Dīpaṅkara. May that aspiration of yours be accomplished without any interference. Let no danger and intimidation occur to you. In your body let there not arise any whit even of ailment. Speedily fulfil the perfections and accordingly achieve the full enlightenment of Buddha. Just as the flower plants and fruit trees bear blossoms and fruits in proper season, similarly, you also should come in contact with the most excellent self-enlightenment of Buddha speedily before the expiry of time-limit." Having proclaimed thus, the celestial beings went back to their own celestial abodes. The Bodhisat also, having thus been duly praised by the celestial beings, said to himself: "Having fulfilled the ten perfections, I shall become Buddha on the expiry of a hundred thousand aeons (kappa) over and above four sets of innumerable worldcycles. Having made his own resolution after strengthening his exertion, the hermit rose up into the sky and went back to the Himalayas even.
Therefore, it has been stated:
"Both celestial and human beings scattered down on to me, as I rose up from my seat, flowers, celestial and human. Both of them, human and divine beings let me know my prosperity: 'Your aspiration is great. May you get it according as you desire. May all calamities abandon you. May your anxieties and ailments disappear. Let there be no hindrances for you. You had better attain the most excellent bodhi, quickly: Just as when proper season arrives, the flowering trees and plants blossom, similarly, you also, O Great Hero! fulfil the ten perfections. Just as some and all omniscient Buddhas became Buddhas on the terrace of their individual bodhi tree, similarly you also, O Great Hero! please become Buddha at the bodhi-tree of the Conqueror. Just as some and all omniscient Buddhas turned the wheel of Dhamma, similarly, you also O Great Hero! please turn the wheel of Dhamma. Just as on the full-moon night, the perfectly pure moon shines exceedingly, similarly, you also with a full heart, please shine brightly on the ten thousand extensive area. Just as the sun, released from its eclipse, out-shines with its brilliance, similarly, you also, please shine specially with your glory, having escaped from the material world. Just as some and all rivers flow down into the great ocean, similarly, may this world of men and world of divine beings be prone to your presence. Praised and eulogised by them, he took upon himself the task of fulfilling entirely those ten deeds of perfection and then entered the forest."
The Sumedha episode has ended.
1.46 The residents of Ramma city entered their city and gave a great offering to the organisation of bhikkhus led by Buddha. The Master preached the Dhamma to them, caused the multitudes to be established in the three-gem-refuges etc., and took his departure from the Ramma city. Thereafter, further on, the Buddha Dipankara spent the span of his life doing all the duties of Buddha and eventually passed away, leaving nothing of substratum of existence behind, into perfect immortal peace by means of the element of nibbāna.(1) There whatever is to be said in that context ought to be extensively explained entirely according as has even been stated in the Buddhavaṃsa.
Indeed, it has been stated there thus:-
"Then they let the Protector of the world enjoy His meal along with his clergy of disciples and approached Him to take their refuge in the master Dipankara. The Tathāgata allowed some of them to go into the Three Refuges (saraṇa), some to observe the five moral precepts and others to take upon themselves the observance of ten kinds of precepts. The Buddha casually gave some of them the four most excellent fruitions, while to some, He imparted analytical knowledge of the incomparable Dhamma. The Bull among men conferred on some of them the eight excellent meditative attainments (samāpatti) and bestowed upon some of them the three kinds of enlightened knowledge and six sorts of super- knowledge. By means of that connection, the Great Sage admonished the body of people, and because of that, the dispensation of the Protector of the world became extensive. The great bull-bodied and great jawed personage, (mahāanu'sabhakkhandha) known by the name of Dīpaṅkara, sent across (tārayati) many men and made them totally escape evil existence (duggatim). Seeing a person deserving enlightenment, at a far-distant place of hundred thousand yojanas even, the Great Sage went near him in a moment's time and made him enlightened. On the first great occasion for the realisation of Dhamma, Buddha enlightened a hundred crores of people. On the second special occasion of the realisation of Dhamma, the Protector enlightened ninety crores. When the Buddha preached the Dhamma in the abode of devas, however, on the third great occasion of the realisation of Dhamma, there were ninety thousand crores. There were three thousand crores of people meeting together and this constitu ted the first assembly of the Master Dīpaṅkara. Again, at the Narada peak, when the Conqueror went into solitude, a hundred crores of pure arahats, whose cankers (āsava) had dried up, came together. When the Great hero was on the high hill of rocky Sudassana, the Great Sage celebrated the closing ceremony of the lent season, (pavāraṇā) with ninety thousand crores. In those days, I was a high ranking hermit, practising austerity and wearing plaited hair and being an accomplished master in super-knowledge, used to be a traveller in the sky. I got the grasp of the Dhamma among the ten and twenty thousand people. Beyond calculation in numerals were those of the singles and doubles, who then realised the Dhamma. The well-purified dispensation of the Glorious Dīpaṅkara Buddha became at that time extensive, understood by multitude, miraculous and prosperous. Four hundred thousand disciples endowed with six kinds of super- knowledge and great magical powers, at all times sur- rounded Dīpaṅkara, knower of the world. Whoever, in those days, abandoned their human existence without attaining any of the fruitions of the four right paths, they were censured. The flora-like preaching of the Buddha bore flowers properly with such blossoms as peerlessly pure arahats whose cankers (āsava) had been dried up and therefore it shone forth forever. So far as the Master Dīpaṅkara's life-story is concerned: he was the king Sudeva, by name, whose city was Rammavatī and whose queen was Sumedhā by name, For ten thousand years he led the household life in his three most excellent palaces known as the Swan, (Hamsa), the Heron, (Koñca)and the peacock, (Mayura). That lady, his queen-mother padumā, by name, who had a retinue of well-decorated women, three thousand in number gave birth to this bull-like son. Seeing the four omens, (nimitta) he renounced the world riding (his royal) elephant. For not less than ten months the Conqueror strove with strenuous effort to become Buddha. Having practised the strenuous austere practice, the Sage became mentally enlightened and became Buddha. On the request being made by Brahmā, the Great Sage Dīpaṅkara, the Great Hero, turned the wheel of Dhamma at the graceful dwelling in the delightful park, Nadarāma. Seated at the foot of Acacia Sirīsa tree He did the treading down of the heretics. Sumaṅgala and Tissa became the two chief disciples, and the thera, named Sāgata, became the attendant of the Master Dīpaṅkara. Nandā as well as Sunandā became His chief female disciples. The bodhi tree of that Glorious Buddha was called Pipphali, pepper tree. The two men, Tapussa and Bhallika, by name were chief male devotees and Sirimā as well as Koṇā were chief female devotees of the Teacher Dīpaṅkara. The Great Sage Dīpaṅkara was eighty cubits in height. Like unto the flowering majestic Sal-tree, and similar to the tree of the island, Buddha Dīpaṅkara was graceful. His rays radiated all round Him for twelve yojanas. The life-span of that Great Sage was a hundred thousand years. Living for so long a life-span, He sent across many people (to immortal peace). Having caused the good Dhamma to shine, he sent across (Santāretnā) big body of people. Together with His disciples, He passed away into nibbāna like unto the extinguishment of a lighted mass of fire. That great magical power, as well as that retinue and reputation of his, and also the gem-like circles on the soles of His feet, all of them disappeared. Are not all aggregates (Samkhara) empty?" The Conqueror Master Dīpaṅkara passed away into nibbāna at the Nanda park. There stood the Conqueror's stūpa, thirty six leagues (yojana) in height".