by T. W. Rhys Davids | 1881 | 137,074 words
The Cullavagga (part of the Vinaya collection) includes accounts of the First and Second Buddhist Councils as well as the establishment of the community of Buddhist nuns. The Cullavagga also elaborates on the etiquette and duties of Bhikkhus....
1. Now at that time the Seṭṭhi of Rājagaha had acquired a block of sandal-wood of the most precious sandal-wood flavour. And the Seṭṭhi of Rājagaha thought, 'How would it be if I were to have a bowl carved out of this block of sandal-wood, so that the chips shall remain my property, and I can give the bowl away?' And the Seṭṭhi of Rājagaha had a bowl turned out of that block of sandal-wood, and put it in a balance, and had it lifted on to the top of a bamboo, and tying that bamboo at the top of a succession of bamboos, he let it be known, saying, 'If any Samaṇa or Brahman be an Arahat and possessed of Iddhi, let him get down the bowl. It is a gift to him!'
'If, Sir, you are an Arahat and possessed of Iddhi, let your reverence get down the bowl!'
Then Makkhali Gosāla, and Ajita Kesa-kambalī, and Pakudha Kaccāyana, and Sañjaya Belaṭṭhiputta, and Nigaṇṭha Nāta-putta went severally to the Seṭṭhi of Rājagaha, [and preferred the same request, and received the same reply.]
Now at that time the venerable Mahā Moggallāna and the venerable Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja, having dressed themselves early in the morning, went into Rājagaha, duly bowled and robed, for alms. And the venerable Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja said to the venerable Mahā Moggallāna: 'The venerable Mahā Moggallāna is both an Arahat and possessed of Iddhi. Go, friend Moggallāna, and fetch down this bowl, for this bowl belongs to thee.'
'The venerable Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja also is both an Arahat and possessed of Iddhi. Go, friend Bhāradvāja, and fetch down the bowl, for this bowl belongs to thee.'
Then the venerable Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja, rising up in the air, took the bowl, and went thrice round Rājagaha (in the air). And at that time the Seṭṭhi of Rājagaha stood in his dwelling-place with his wife and children, and holding up his clasped hands in reverent salutation, he exclaimed, 'May the venerable Bhāradvāja be pleased to descend upon our dwelling-place.' And the venerable Bhāradvāja descended into his dwelling-place. Then the Seṭṭhi of Rājagaha took the bowl from the hands of the venerable Bhāradvāja, and filled it with costly food, and presented it to the venerable Bhāradvāja. And the venerable Bhāradvāja took the bowl, and departed to his Ārāma.
2. Now the people heard, 'The venerable Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja, they say, has got down the Rājagaha Seṭṭhi's bowl.' And those people, with shouts loud and long, followed in the steps of Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja. And the Blessed One heard the shouts loud and long, and on hearing them he asked the venerable Ānanda, 'What now, Ānanda, does this so great shouting mean?'
The venerable Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja, Lord, has got down the Rājagaha Seṭṭhi's bowl; and the people thereof are following in his steps with shouts loud and long.'
Then the Blessed One, on that occasion and in that connection, convened a meeting of the Bhikkhu-Saṃgha, and asked Piṇḍola Bhāradvāja, 'Is it true, as they say, that you, Bhāradvāja, have got down the Rājagaha Seṭṭhi's bowl?'
'It is true, Lord.'
The Blessed Buddha rebuked him, saying, 'This is improper, Bhāradvāja, not according to rule, unsuitable, unworthy of a Samaṇa, unbecoming, and ought not to be done. How can you, Bhāradvāja, for the sake of a miserable wooden pot, display before the laity the superhuman quality of your miraculous power of Iddhi? Just, Bhāradvāja, like a woman who displays herself for the sake of a miserable piece of money, have you, for the sake of a miserable wooden pot displayed before the laity the superhuman quality of your miraculous power of Iddhi. This will not conduce, Bhāradvāja, either to the conversion of the unconverted, or to the increase of the converted; but rather to those who have not been converted remaining unconverted, and to the turning back of those who have been converted.'
And when he had rebuked him, and had delivered a religious discourse, he addressed the Bhikkhus, and said: 'You are not, O Bhikkhus, to display before the laity the superhuman power of Iddhi. Whosoever does so, shall be guilty of a dukkaṭa. Break to pieces, O Bhikkhus, that wooden bowl; and when you have ground it to powder, give it to the Bhikkhus as perfume for their eye ointments. And you are not, O Bhikkhus, to use wooden bowls. Whosoever does so, shall be guilty of a dukkaṭa.'
Footnotes and references:
A Burmese version of the following legend is translated by Bishop Bigandet in his 'Legend of the Burmese Buddha,' vol. ii, pp. 212-216 (Third Edition).
Candana-ganṭhī uppannā hoti ti candana-ghaṭṭikā uppannā hoti (B.). Compare gaṇṭhikā at Jātaka I, 150 = gaṇḍikā at ibid. II, 124, and our note below on that word at V, 29, 3.
Lekhaṃ. It is clear from V, 9, 2, below, and Buddhaghosa's note there, that likhituṃ is used in the sense of 'to plane' or 'to adze' wood or metal; and the Sinhalese MSS. read here likhaṃ instead of lekhaṃ. It cannot be 'to turn,' as the turning lathe is quite a modern invention.
A similar proceeding is related of a Bhikkhu at 24, 1.
Māsaka-rūpassa. On the māsaka, see Rh. D.'s 'Ancient Coins and Measures, &c.,' p. 13. It is evident from the use of the word rūpa here that stamped pieces of money were known in the valley of the Ganges as early as the time when the Cullavagga was composed. The word occurs also below at Cullavagga XII, 1, X.
See Cullavagga I, 1, 2.
Compare the 4th Pārājika.
The use of sandal-wood for this purpose is allowed by the closing words of Mahāvagga VI, 11.
This injunction is repeated below in the summary at V, 37.