Maha Prajnaparamita Sastra

by Gelongma Karma Migme Chödrön | 2001 | 941,039 words

This page describes “adbhutadharma” as written by Nagarjuna in his Maha-prajnaparamita-sastra (lit. “the treatise on the great virtue of wisdom”) in the 2nd century. This book, written in five volumes, represents an encyclopedia on Buddhism as well as a commentary on the Pancavimsatisahasrika Prajnaparamita.

Eleventh aṅga (member): Adbhutadharma

Wei-ts’eng-yeouAdbhutadharma’. When the Buddha manifests his many miraculous powers (ṛddhibala), beings are astonished at these miracles (adbhuta).

Thus, at his birth,[1] the Buddha emitted great rays (arcis) that illuminated the trisāhasramhasāhasralokadhātu and the dark intermediate places (lokāntarikā); he also illuminated the trisāhasramahāsāhasralokadhātus of innumerable buddhas in the ten directions.

Then, in front of the Buddha’s mother there appeared a beautiful clear pool (udapāna) to bathe the Bodhisattva. Brahmā-devarāja held a parasol (chattraṃ dhārayati), Śakra-devendra washed his body and two Nāgas [each] emitted a stream of water (vāridhāra).

As soon as he was born, the Bodhisattva took seven steps without anyone’s support (sāṃpratajāto bodhisattvaḥ saptapadāni prakrāntaḥ parigṛhito na kenacit); wherever he placed his foot, lotuses grew up (yatra yatra padaṃ nikṣipati sma tatra tatra padmāni prādurbhavanti sma). And he said: “I will save all beings from birth (jāti), old age (jarā), sickness (vyādhi) and death (maraṇa).”

There was a great trembling of the earth (pṛthivīcāla); the gods rained down flowers; the trees emitted sounds (ghoṣa) and heavenly music (divyatūrya) began to play. The innumerable marvels of this kind are called adbhutadharma.

Footnotes and references:


The miracles that marked the birth of the Bodhisattva have been mentioned above, p. 6–10F, 1343–1344F.

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