Mahavamsa : die große Chronik Sri Lankas

5. Kapitel 5: Das dritte Konzil

4. Vers 75 - 96: Asokas Eintauchen in die Religion

verfasst von Mahanama

übersetzt und erläutert von Alois Payer


Zitierweise / cite as:

Mahanama <6. Jhdt n. Chr.>: Mahavamsa : die große Chronik Sri Lankas / übersetzt und erläutert von Alois Payer. -- 5. Kapitel 5: Das dritte Konzil. -- 4. Vers 75 - 96: Asokas Eintauchen in die Religion. -- Fassung vom 2006-06-11. -- URL:  -- [Stichwort].

Erstmals publiziert: 2006-06-11


Anlass: Lehrveranstaltungen, Sommersemester 2001, 2006

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Die Zahlreichen Zitate aus Malalasekera, G. P. <1899 - 1973>: Dictionary of Pāli proper names. -- Nachdruck der Ausgabe 1938. -- London : Pali Text Society, 1974. -- 2 vol. -- 1163, 1370 S. -- ISBN 0860132692. sind ein Tribut an dieses großartige Werk. Das Gesamtwerk ist online zugänglich unter: -- Zugriff am 2006-05-08.

Pañcama pariccheda


Fünftes Kapitel

Das dritte Konzil

Alle Verse sind im Versmaß vatta = siloka = Śloka abgefasst.

Das metrische Schema ist:

 ̽  ̽  ̽  ̽ ˘ˉˉˉ
 ̽  ̽  ̽  ̽ ˘ˉ˘ˉ

 ̽  ̽  ̽  ̽ ˘ˉˉˉ
 ̽  ̽  ̽  ̽ ˘ˉ˘ˉ

Ausführlich zu Vatta im Pāli siehe:

Warder, A. K. (Anthony Kennedy) <1924 - >: Pali metre : a contribution to the history of Indian literature. -- London : Luzac, 1967. --  XIII, 252 S. -- S. 172 - 201.


Der Hauptzweck der drei Kapitel zu den ersten drei Konzilen ist, zu zeigen, dass der Theravādabuddhismus Lankās der Bewahrer der reinen Buddhalehre ist.

4. Asokas Eintauchen in die Religion


75. Tato rājā pasanno so,
diguṇena dine dine;
bhikkhū saṭṭhisahassāni,
anupubben' upaṭhahia.

a Geiger: vaḍḍhayi


Dann bediente der König zufrieden täglich doppelt so viele Mönche wie am Vortag bis es 60.0001 waren.


1 60.000: bis er diese Zahl (genau 65.536) erreicht hätte, hätte er 11 Tage gebraucht.

76. Titthiyānaṃ sahassāni,
nikaḍḍhitvāna saṭṭhi so;
saṭṭhi bhikkhusahassāni,
ghare niccam abhojayi.


Er schloss die 60.000 Irrlehrer aus und speiste statt dessen in seinem Haus ständig 60.000 Mönche.

77. Saṭṭhi bhikkhusahassāni
bhojetuṃ turito hi so;
khajjabhojjaṃ mahārahaṃ.
78. Bhūsāpetvāna nagaraṃ,
gantvā saṅghaṃ nimantiya;
gharaṃ netvāna bhojetvā,
datvā sāmaṇakaṃ bahuṃ.
79. Satthārā desito dhammo,
kittako ti apucchatha;
byākāsi Moggaliputto,
Tissatthero tadassa taṃ.

77. - 79.

Eilig ließ er harte und weiche Speise bereiten, um 60.000 Mönche zu speisen. Er ließ dann die Stadt schmücken, lud die Mönchsgemeinde ein, brachte sie in sein Haus und speiste sie. Er gab ihnen dann vieles, was Asketen brauchen. Dann fragte er, wie umfangreich die vom Lehrer (Buddha) verkündete Lehre ist. Der Thera Moggaliputta Tissa1 antwortete ihm.


1 Moggaliputta Tissa

"Moggaliputta Tissa Thera

President of the Third Council. In his penultimate birth he was a Brahmā, called Tissa, and consented to be born in the world of men at the urgent request of the arahants who held the Second Council, in order to prevent the downfall of the Buddha's religion. He was born in the home of the brahmin Moggali of Pātaliputta. Siggava and Candavajji had been entrusted with the task of converting him. From the time of Tissa's birth, therefore, for seven years, Siggava went daily to the house of Moggali, but not even one word of welcome did he receive. In the eighth year someone said to him, "Go further on." As he went out he met Moggali, and, on being asked whether he had received anything at his house, he said he had. Moggali inquired at home and the next day charged Siggava with lying. But hearing Siggava's explanation, he was greatly pleased and thereafter constantly offered Siggava hospitality at his house. One day, young Tissa, who was thoroughly proficient in the Vedas, was much annoyed at finding Siggava occupying his seat and spoke to him harshly. But Siggava started to talk to him and asked him a question from the Cittayamaka. Tissa could not answer it, and, in order to learn the Buddha's teachings, he entered the Order under Siggava, becoming a sotāpanna soon after. Siggava instructed him in the Vinaya and Candavajji in the Sutta and Abhidhamma Pitakas. In due course he attained arahantship and became the acknowledged leader of the monks at Pātaliputta (Mhv.v.95ff., 131ff.; Dpv.v.55ff.; Sp.i.35 41).

At the festival of dedication of the Asokārāma and the other vihāras built by Asoka, Moggaliputta Tissa informed Asoka, in answer to a question, that one becomes a kinsman of the Buddha's religion only by letting one's son or daughter enter the Order. Acting on this suggestion, Asoka had both his children ordained. Moggaliputta acted as Mahinda's upajjhāya (Mhv.v.191ff.; Sp.i.50f). Later, because of the great gains which accrued to the monks through Asoka's patronage of the Buddha's religion, the Order became corrupt, and Moggaliputta committed the monks to the charge of Mahinda, and, for seven years, lived in solitary retreat on the Ahogangā pabbata. From there Asoka sent for him to solve his doubts as to what measure of sin belonged to him owing to the murder of the monks by his minister. But Moggaliputta would not come until persuaded that his services were needed to befriend the religion. He traveled by boat to Pātaliputta, and was met at the landing place by the king who helped him out by supporting him on his arm.

According to Sp.i.58, the king had a dream on the preceding night which the soothsayers interpreted to mean that a great ascetic (samananāga) would touch his right hand. As the Thera touched the king's hand the attendants were about to kill him, for to do this was a crime punishable by death. The king, however, restrained them. The Thera took the king's hand as a sign that he accepted him as pupil.

The king, having led him to Rativaddhana Park, begged him to perform a miracle. This the Thera consented to do and made the earth quake in a single region. To convince the king that the murder of the monks involved no guilt for himself, the Thera preached to him the Tittira Jātaka. Within a week, with the aid of two yakkhas, the king had all the monks gathered together and held an assembly at the Asokārāma. In the presence of Moggaliputta, Asoka questioned the monks on their various doctrines, and all those holding heretical views were expelled from the Order, Moggaliputta decreeing that the Vibhajjavāda alone contained the teaching of the Buddha. Later, in association with one thousand arahants, Moggaliputta held the Third Council at Asokārāma, with himself as President, and compiled the Kathāvatthuppakarana, in refutation of false views. This was in the seventeenth year of Asoka's reign and Moggaliputta was seventy two years old (Mhv.v.231 81; Dpv.vii.16ff., 39ff.; Sp.i.57ff). At the conclusion of the Council in nine months, Moggaliputta made arrangements, in the month of Kattika, for monks to go to the countries adjacent to India for the propagation of the religion (For a list of these, see Mhv.xii.1ff.; Dpv.viii.1ff.; Sp.i.63ff). Later, when the request came from Ceylon for a branch of the Bodhi tree, Asoka consulted the Elder as to how this could be carried out, and Moggaliputta told him of the five resolves made by the Buddha on his death bed (Mhv.xviii.21ff).

The Dīpavamsa says (Dpv. 68ff., 82, 94, 96, 100f. 107f.; also vii.23ff ) that Moggaliputta Tissa's ordination was in the second year of Candagutta's reign, when Siggava was sixty four years old. Candagutta reigned for twenty four years, and was followed by Bindusāra, who reigned for thirty seven years, and he was succeeded by Asoka. In the sixth year of Asoka's reign, Moggaliputta was sixty-six years old, and it was then that he ordained Mahinda. He was eighty years old at the time of his death and had been leader of the Order for sixty eight years. He died in the twenty sixth year of Asoka's reign."

[Quelle: Malalasekera, G. P. <1899 - 1973>: Dictionary of Pāli proper names. -- Nachdruck der Ausgabe 1938. -- London : Pali Text Society, 1974. -- 2 vol. -- 1163, 1370 S. -- ISBN 0860132692. -- s.v.]

80. Sutvāna caturāsīti,
dhammakkhandhā ti so ’bravi;
pūjemi te ’haṃ paccekaṃ,
vihārenā ti bhūpati.


Als er hörte, dass es 84.0001 Abschnitte der Buddhalehre gibt, sagte der König, dass er jeden einzelnen mit einem Kloster2 ehren wolle.


1 84.000: Im Text steht "84", aber aus dem Folgenden folgt, dass 84 Tausend gemeint ist

2 Kloster (vihāra)


A monastery, a residential building for the Buddhist mendicants. It is one of five kinds of 'lodgings' (senāsanāni) allowed by the Buddha for the residence of the monks. The others are : Aḍḍhayoga, Pāsāda, Hammiya and Guhā. (Cv. p. 239. On p. 259, the utility of a Vihāra is mentioned. See also Mv, p. 55, the Gāthās 1-5).

The Vihāra is regarded as the property of the Buddhist Saṅgha at all the places and for all the times to come. (Cv. p 240). And so, it can never be 'given away' (avissajjiya) nor can be 'divided' (avebhaṅgiya). If anybody does so, he commits the offence of Thullaccaya. (Ibid, pp. 266-268).

The Vihāra may be plastered one, or coated or coloured with white, black or Geruka (reddish) materials. (Ibid. p. 244). It may be decorated with the paintings of flowers, creepers, etc., but never with the pictures of men or women. If one does so, he coommits the offence of Dukkaṭa. (Ibid. p. 245),

A Vihāra may have three kinds of apartments or chambers, viz., a square (sīvikāgabbha), a long quadrangle (nālikāgabbha), a chamber on the upper storey (hammiyagabbha). In a large Vihāra the chamber (gabbha) may be in the middle, but in a small Vihāra it may be constructed at one side. {Ibid, p. 245).

The Vihāra should be provided with wooden pegs (Bhittikhīla nāgadantakam), a bamboo or string (Cīvaravamsa, Cīvararajju) to hang the robes. (Ibid. p. 246). There should be a refectory (Upaṭṭhānasālā) for the purpose of taking meals. Near this place a small room should be built to keep the drinking water (Pānīyasālā). The water-room or Pānīyasālā should be provided with cups, glasses, etc. (Ibid. pp. 246-247). A fire-place or Aggisālā and a courtyard or Parivaṇa, etc. should also be provided in a Vihāra, For the protection of the Vihāra the Buddha recommened fence, hedge, gates, etc. (Ibid. pp. 247-248).

The roof of the Vihāra may be of brick, stone, Cunam (lime), grass or leaves. (Ibid. p. 248).

As regards the location of a Vihāra the most suitable place is that which is neither very far from the village or nigama or town nor too close to it There should be easy approach, not crowded in the day and quiet at night. It is fit for the solitude, a lonely place, fit for meditation. The Veḷuvanārāma at Rājagaha (Mv. p. 38) and the Anāthapiṇḍikassa Jetavanārāma (Cv. pp. 252-253) at Sāvatthi were built in such surroundings (Cf. Gāmato neva atidūrena accāsanne, gamanāgamanasampannaṃ, atthikānaṃ atthikānaṃ manussānaṃ abhikkamanīyaṃ, divā appakiṇṇaṃ, rattiṃ appasaddaṃ, appanigghosaṃ, vijanavātaṃ manussārāhaseyyakaṃ, paṭisallānasāruppaṃ.—Cv. pp. 252-253).

A Vihāra may be constructed for the personal use (puggalika) or for the use of whole Saṅgha (sāṅghikaṃ). To construct a Mahallaka Vihāra (i. e. a large Vihāra; larger than a Kuṭī) for an individual monk (by a Dāyaka) the desirous monk must get the proposed site 'examined' (vatthu-olokana); and the formal 'approval' of the Saṅgha (vatthu-desanā) must be obtained. If such a Vihāra is constructed without the vatthu-desan of the Saṅgha, an offence of Saṅghādisesa is committed. (Rule No. 7; Pm. p. 233).

No monk should turn out any monk from the Vihāra out of anger If the latter is already allowed to stay. (Cv. p. 262). If one does so, he commits the olfence of Pācitiiya, (Bhikkhu Rule No. 17, Bhikhunī Rule No. 113: Pac. pp. 68-69; Pm. (B), pp. 12&46).

The Bhikkhu who is made in-charge of alloting the rooms or beds in a Vihāra is called the Senāsanagāhāpaka. He is selected by the Saṅgha by holding a Ñattidutiyakamma. (Cv. 262; Cf, SP. Vol. III, pp. 1306-1307).

The following things of the Vihāra should never be 'given away' (avissajjanīya) nor be 'divided' (avebhaṅgiya): viz.,
  • ĀrĀma, its land,
  • Vihāra and its land,
  • couch (mañca),
  • chair (pīṭha),
  • bolster (bhisi).
  • pillow (bimbohana),
  • iron or copper pitchers (lohakumbhī),
  • iron jar (Lohavāraka),
  • iron or copper utensils (lohakaṭāha),
  • hatchet (vāsī),
  • large axe (parasu),
  • axe (kuṭhārī),
  • hoe (kuddāla),
  • chisel (nikhādana),
  • creeper,
  • bamboo,
  • Muñja or Babbaja,
  • grass,
  • earth,
  • wood-material,
  • earth-material.

(Cv. pp. 266, 267-268)."

[Quelle: Upasak C. S. (Chandrika Singh): Dictionary of early Buddhist Monastic terms : (based on Pali literature). -- Varanasi : Bharati Prakashan, 1975. -- III, 245 S. ; 25 cm. -- s.v.]

81. Datvā tadā channavuti-
dhanakoṭiṃ mahīpati;
puresu caturāsīti-
sahassesu mahītale.
82. Tattha tatth' eva rājūhi,
vihāre ārabhāpayi;
sayaṃ Asokārāmaṃ tu,
kārāpetuṃ samārabhi.


Der König spendete 9.600.000 Geldstücke und ließ in 84.000 Städten auf der Erde von den Königen den Bau von Klöstern in Angriff nehmen. Er selbst begann, das Asokārāma1 bauen zu lassen.


1 Asokārāma


A monastery in Pāṭaliputta, built by Asoka and finished in three years. It was there that the king's brother Tissa was ordained. When the monks had refused for seven years to hold the uposatha ceremony, Asoka sent his minister to summon them to the Asokārāma. There the misguided minister beheaded several theras who refused to obey his orders. It was there that Moggaliputta Tissa held the Third Council and made a compilation of the Dhamma (Mhv.v.80, 163, 174, 236, 276).

Asoka used to feed 60,000 monks daily at the Asokārāma.

On the day of the foundation of the Mahā Thūpa in Anurādhapura, sixty thousand monks under Mittinna came from Asokārāma (Mhv.xxix.36). There, too, lived Dhammarakkhita, the teacher of Nāgasena (Mil.16-18).

Indagutta Thera was appointed by the king to superintend the building of the vihāra (Sp.i.48-9).

It was from Asokārāma that Mahinda set out on his mission to Ceylon (Sp.i.69). "

[Quelle: Malalasekera, G. P. <1899 - 1973>: Dictionary of Pāli proper names. -- Nachdruck der Ausgabe 1938. -- London : Pali Text Society, 1974. -- 2 vol. -- 1163, 1370 S. -- ISBN 0860132692. -- s.v.]

83. Ratanattayanigrodha-
gilānānan ti sāsane;
paccekaṃ satasahassaṃ,
so dāpesia dine dine.

a Geiger: adāsi


Täglich ließ er für religiöse Zwecke, nämlich für die dreifache Zuflucht1, für Nigrodha und für die Kranken  je 100.000 Geldstücke ausgeben.


1 Dreifache Zuflucht: Buddha, Buddhalehre (dhamma), Gemeinschaft der Erlösten (saṅgha). Siehe oben zu Vers 74.

84. Dhanena buddhadinnena,
thūpapūjā anekadhā;
anekesu vihāresu,
aneke akaruṃ sadā.


Mit dem Geld, das er Buddha spendete, verehrten viele ständig in vielen Klöstern auf vielerlei Weise die Stūpas1.


1 Stūpa: siehe zu Mahāvaṃsa I, 23f.

85. Dhanena dhammadinnena,
paccaye caturo vare;
dhammadharānaṃ bhikkhūnaṃ,
upanesuṃa sadā narā.

a Burm.: upanetuṃ


Mit dem Geld, das er der Buddhalehre spendete, brachten die Leute ständig Mönchen, welche die Lehre auswendig kannten, die vier materiellen Grundlagen1 des Mönchslebens in bester Qualität.


1 die vier materiellen Grundlagen des Mönchslebens (paccaya):
  1. piṇḍa-pāta m. -- Almosenspeise
  2. cīvara n. -- Mönchsgewand
  3. senāsana n. -- Wohnstätte
  4. bhesajja n. -- Arzneien

86. Anotattodakājesu,
saṅghassa caturo adā;
tepiṭakānaṃ therānaṃ,
saṭṭhi yekaṃ dine dine.


Von den acht Traglasten Wasser aus dem Anotatta-See1 gab er dem Mönchsorden vier. Eine gab er täglich sechzig Theras, die alle drei Körbe des buddhistischen Kanons beherrschten.


1 Traglasten Wasser aus dem Anotatta-See: siehe oben Vers 24.

2 alle drei Körbe des buddhistischen Kanons: nämlich:

  1. Vinaya-piṭaka n. -- Korb der Ordensdisziplin
  2. Sutta-piṭaka n. -- Korb der Lehrreden
  3. Abhidhamma-piṭaka n. -- Korb der philosophischen Darstellung der buddhistischen Lehre (abhidhamma m.)

(Vinayapiṭaka ; Th 8, 224) <74>

Im Einzelnen:

  1. Vinaya-Piṭaka:
    1. Suttavibhaṅga
      1. Bhikkhu-(Mahā)-vibhaṅga
      2. Bhikkhuṇī-vibhaṅga
    2. Khandhaka
      1. Mahāvagga
      2. Cullavagga
  2. Sutta-Piṭaka:
    1. Dīgha-nikāya
    2. Majhima-nikāya
    3. Saṃyutta-nikāya
    4. Aṅguttara-nikāya
    5. Khuddaka-nikāya
      1. Khuddakapāṭha
      2. Dhammapada
      3. Udāna
      4. Itivuttaka
      5. Suttanipāta
      6. Vimānavatthu
      7. Petavatthu
      8. Theragāthā
      9. Therīgāthā
      10. Jātaka
      11. Niddesa
      12. Patisambhidāmagga
      13. Apadāna
      14. Buddhavaṃsa
      15. Cariyāpiṭaka
  3. Abhidhamma-Piṭaka:
    1. Dhammasaṅgani
    2. Vibhaṅga
    3. Dhātukathā
    4. Puggalapaññatti
    5. Kathāvatthu
    6. Yamaka
    7. Paṭṭhāna

87. Ekaṃ Asandhimittāya,
deviyā tu adāpayi;
sayaṃ pana duve yeva,
paribhuñji mahīpati.

Eine solche Traglast Wasser ließ er seiner Hauptfrau Asandhimittā1 geben. Der König selbst genoss nur zwei solche Traglasten Wasser.


1 Asandhimittā: siehe oben zu Vers 62.

88. Saṭṭhibhikkhusahassānaṃ,
dantakaṭṭhaṃ dine dine;
adā nāgalatāvhayaṃ.


Täglich gab er Nāgalāta-Zahnholz1 an 60.000 Mönche und 16.000 Palastfrauen.


1 Nāgalāta-Zahnholz: siehe oben Vers 25


A tooth-stick, to be used for cleaning the teeth. In the beginning all the Bhikkhus of the Saṅgha were not in the habit of using the tooth-stick daily. The Buddha then admonished the monks and enjoined them to use it daily. (Co. p. 227). Its smallest size should be of four Aṅgulas, while the longest must not be more than 8 Aṅgulas, (Ibid. p. 228)."

[Quelle: Upasak C. S. (Chandrika Singh): Dictionary of early Buddhist Monastic terms : (based on Pali literature). -- Varanasi : Bharati Prakashan, 1975. -- III, 245 S. ; 25 cm. -- s.v.]

89. Athekadivasaṃ rājā,
kappāyukaṃ Mahākāḷaṃ,
nāgarājaṃ mahiddhikaṃ.
90. Suṇitvā tam ānetuṃ,
pesayitvā tam ānetvā,
setacchattassa heṭṭhato.
91. Pallaṅkamhi nisīdetvā,
nānāpupphehi pūjiya;
parivāriya abravi.

89. - 91.

Eines Tages hörte der König von Mahākāḷa1, einem wundermächtigen Nāgakönig2, der so alt wie das Weltzeitalter3 war und vier Buddhas4 gesehen hatte. Er sandte nach ihm, um ihn mit einer goldenen Kette gefesselt herbeizubringen. Als er herbeigebracht war, ließ er ihn auf dem Thron unter dem weißen Schirm Platz nehmen, ehrte ihn mit verschiedenen Blüten, ließ ihn von den 16.000 Palastfrauen umgeben und sprach:


1 Mahākāḷa


A Nāga king who dwelt in the Mañjerika Nāgabhavana. When the Buddha, after eating the meal given by Sujātā, launched the bowl up stream, it travelled a short way and then stopped, having reached the Nāga's abode under the Nerañjarā, and then came into contact with the bowls similarly launched by the three previous Buddhas of this kappa. To the Nāga because of his long life it seemed that the previous Buddha had died only the preceding day, and he rejoiced to think that another had been born. He went therefore to the scene of the Buddha's Enlightenment with his Nāga maidens and they sang the Buddha's praises. J.i.70, 72; this incident is among those sculpturally represented in the Relic Chamber of the Mahā Thūpa (Mhv.xxxi.83); see also Dvy.392; Mtu.ii.265, 302, 304.

Kāla's life span was one kappa; therefore he saw all the four Buddhas of this kappa, and when Asoka wished to see the form of the Buddha, he sent for Mahākāla, who created for him a beautiful figure of the Buddha, complete in every detail (Mhv.v.87f.; Sp.i.43, etc.).

When the Buddha's relics, deposited at Rāmagāma, were washed away, Mahākāla took the basket containing them into his abode and there did them honour till they were removed, against his will, by Sonuttara. Mhv.xxxi.25ff."

[Quelle: Malalasekera, G. P. <1899 - 1973>: Dictionary of Pāli proper names. -- Nachdruck der Ausgabe 1938. -- London : Pali Text Society, 1974. -- 2 vol. -- 1163, 1370 S. -- ISBN 0860132692. -- s.v.]

2 Nāgakönig

Nāga sind kobraförmige Wesen.


A class of beings classed with Garuḷas and Supannas and playing a prominent part in Buddhist folk lore. They are gifted with miraculous powers and great strength. Generally speaking, they are confused with snakes, chiefly the hooded Cobra, and their bodies are described as being those of snakes, though they can assume human form at will. They are broadly divided into two classes: those that live on land (thalaja) and those that live on water (jalaja). The Jalaja-nāgā live in rivers as well as in the sea, while the Thalaja-nāgā are regarded as living beneath the surface of the earth. Several Nāga dwellings are mentioned in the books: e.g.,

  • Mañjerika-bhavana under Sineru,
  • Daddara-bhavana at the foot of Mount Daddara in the Himālaya,
  • the Dhatarattha-nāgā under the river Yamunā,
  • the Nābhāsā Nāgā in Lake Nabhasa,
  • and also the Nāgas of Vesāli, Tacchaka, and Payāga (D.ii.258).

The Vinaya (ii.109) contains a list of four royal families of Nāgas (Ahirājakulāni): Virūpakkhā, Erāpathā, Chabyāputtā and Kanhagotamakā. Two other Nāga tribes are generally mentioned together: the Kambalas and the Assataras. It is said (SA.iii.120) that all Nāgas have their young in the Himālaya.

Stories are given - e.g., in the Bhūridatta Jātaka - of Nāgas, both male and female, mating with humans; but the offspring of such unions are watery and delicate ( The Nāgas are easily angered and passionate, their breath is poisonous, and their glance can be deadly (, 164). They are carnivorous (J.iii.361), their diet consisting chiefly of frogs (, and they sleep, when in the world of men, on ant hills (ibid., 170). The enmity between the Nāgas and the Garulas is proverbial (D.ii.258). At first the Garulas did not know how to seize the Nāgas, because the latter swallowed large stones so as to be of great weight, but they learnt how in the Pandara Jātaka. The Nāgas dance when music is played, but it is said ( that they never dance if any Garula is near (through fear) or in the presence of human dancers (through shame).

The best known of all Nāgas is Mahākāla, king of Mañjerika-bhavana. He lives for a whole kappa, and is a very pious follower of the Buddha. The Nāgas of his world had the custodianship of a part of the Buddha's relics till they were needed for the Māha Thūpa (Mhv.xxxi.27f.), and when the Bodhi tree was being brought to Ceylon they did it great honour during the voyage (Mbv. p.. 163f.). Other Nāga kings are also mentioned as ruling with great power and majesty and being converted to the Buddha's faith - e.g., Aravāla, Apalālā, Erapatta, Nandopananda, and Pannaka. (See also Ahicchatta and Ahināga.) In the Atānātiya Sutta (D.iii.198f.), speaking of dwellers of the Cātummahārajika world, the Nāgas are mentioned as occupying the Western Quarter, with Virūpokkha as their king.

The Nāgas had two chief settlements in Ceylon, in Nāgadīpa (q.v.) and at the mouth of the river Kalyānī. It was to settle a dispute between two Nāga chiefs of Nāgadīpa, Mahodara and Cūlodara, that the Buddha paid his second visit to Ceylon. During that visit he made a promise to another Nāga-king, Manjakkhika of Kalyānī, to pay him a visit, and the Buddha's third visit was in fulfilment of that undertaking (Mhv.i.48f.).

The Nāgas form one of the guards set up by Sakka in Sineru against the Asuras (J.i.204). The Nāgas were sometimes worshipped by human beings and were offered sacrifices of milk, rice, fish, meat and strong drink (J.i.497f.). The jewel of the Nāgas is famous for its beauty and its power of conferring wishes to its possessor (, 180).

The word Nāga is often used as an epithet of the Buddha and the Arahants, and in this connection the etymology given is āgum na karotī ti Nāgo (e.g., MNid.201). The Bodhisatta was born several times as king of the Nāgas: Atula, Campeyya, Bhūridatta, Mahādaddara, and Sankhapāla.

In the accounts given of the Nāgas, there is undoubtedly great confusion between the Nāgas as supernatural beings, as snakes, and as the name of certain non Aryan tribes, but the confusion is too difficult to unravel."

[Quelle: Malalasekera, G. P. <1899 - 1973>: Dictionary of Pāli proper names. -- Nachdruck der Ausgabe 1938. -- London : Pali Text Society, 1974. -- 2 vol. -- 1163, 1370 S. -- ISBN 0860132692. -- s. v.]

3 Weltzeitalter:  der zwischen einer Weltentstehung und einem Weltuntergang verstreichende Zeitraum.

4 vier Buddhas, nämlich die vier bisherigen Buddhas unseres Weltzeitalters:

92. Saddhammacakkavattissa
sambuddhassaa mahesino;
rūpaṃ anantañāṇassa,
dassehi mama bho iti.

a Geiger: sabbaññussa


"Mein Lieber, zeige mir die Gestalt dessen, der das Rad der wahren Lehre in Bewegung setzt1, des vollkommenen Buddha (bzw. des Allwissenden), des großen Weisen von grenzenlosem Wissen!"


1 cakkavatti = "der das Rad in Bewegung setzt" = Weltenherrscher. Ein Bodhisatta hat in seiner letzten Geburt die Option, ein Weltenherrscher oder ein Buddha zu werden.

93. Dvattiṃsalakkhaṇūpetaṃ,
ketumālāhia sobhitaṃa.

a Geiger: ketumālābhisobhitaṃ

94. Nimmāsia nāgarājā so,
buddharūpaṃ manoharaṃb;
taṃ disvātipasādassa,
vimhayassa ca pūrito.

a Geiger: Nimmāyi
b Geiger:

93. - 94.

Der Nāgakönig bildete die Gestalt Buddhas anziehend mit ihren 32 Merkmalen1, schön durch 80 Unterscheidungsmerkmale2, umgeben von Strahlenkranz von doppelter Armspanne3, durch Strahlen glänzend. Als Asoka dies gesehen hatte, war er voll Glück und Erstaunen.


1 32 Merkmale eines großen Wesen (mahāpurisalakkhaṇa n.)

Der Bodhisatta ist großes Wesen (mahāpurisa), als solcher kann er entweder Weltenherrscher (Cakkavattī) werden oder Buddha. Ein solches großes Wesen können Zeichendeuter an den 32 Merkmalen eines großen Wesen (mahāpurisalakkhaṇa n.) erkennen:

  1. Er hat Füße die fest auf dem Boden stehen
  2. Auf jeder Fußsohle hat er ein Rad mit 1000 Speichen
  3. Er hat breite Fersen
  4. Er hat lange Finger und Zehen
  5. Er hat zarte und weiche Hände und Füße
  6. Er hat Hände und Füße wie Gitterstäbe an einem Fenster
  7. Er hat höhere Knöchel als normale Menschen und darum frei drehbare Füße
  8. Er hat Waden wie eine Antilope
  9. Er hat Arme bis zu den Knien
  10. Sein Geschlechtsteile sind in einem Schatzkästchen verhüllt
  11. Seine Haut ist goldglänzend
  12. Er schwitzt nicht und bindet keinen Staub
  13. Er hat einzelne Körperhaare, in jeder Pore nur eines
  14. Seine Körperhaare sind aufgerichtet, blauschwarz, sich rechtsläufig ringelnd
  15. Seine Glieder sind gigantisch und gerade
  16. Er hat sieben Wölbungen: Hände, Füße, Schultern, Rücken
  17. Sein Körper ist wie die vordere Hälfte eines Löwen (imponierend)
  18. Der Zwischenraum zwischen den Schultern ist aufgefüllt (nicht hohl)
  19. Seine Armweite ist wie die Körperlänge
  20. Seine Schultern sind gleichmäßig rund
  21. Er entlässt keinen Urin, sondern einen wohlschmeckenden Saft
  22. Er hat Kinnbacken wie ein Löwe
  23. Er hat 40 Zähne
  24. Seine Zähne sind gleich(mäßig)
  25. Seine Zähne sind lückenlos
  26. Seine Zähne sind ganz weiß
  27. Seine Zunge ist lang (er kann damit Nasenlöcher, Ohren, Haaransatz berühren)
  28. Er hat eine Stimme, die nicht verschleimt, und spricht wie ein indischer Kuckuck.
  29. Er hat tiefschwarze (purpurblaue) Augen
  30. Er hat Wimpern wie eine Kuh
  31. Er hat zwischen den Augenbrauen einen weißen, weichen, rechtsdrehenden Haarwirbel
  32. Er hat auf dem Kopf einen turbanartigen Auswuchs

Diese Liste findet man im Palikanon in D. II, 17f. ; III, 142 ff. ; M. II, 136f.

2 80 Unterscheidungsmerkmale

Die Liste findet man im Lalitavistara (ed. by Rajendra Lal Mitra. -- Calcutta, 1887. -- (Bibliotheca Indica). -- S. 121; ed. by S. Lefmann. -- Halle, 1902. -- S. 106; ed. by P. L. Vaidya. -- Darbhanga, 1958. -- (Buddhist Sanskrit texts ; No. 1). -- S. 75, Zl. 7ff.):

Saṃvidyante khalu punar mahārāja sarvārthasiddhasya kumārasya kāye 'śīty anuvyañjanāni, yaiḥ samanvāgataḥ sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāro nārhaty agāram adhyāvasitum. Avaśyam abhiniṣkramiṣyati pravrajyāyai. Katamāni ca mahārāja tāny aśīty anuvyañjanāni?


  1. tuṅganakhaś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ
  2. tāmranakhaś ca
  3. snigdhanakhaś ca
  4. vṛttāṅnguliś ca
  5. anupūrvacitrāṅguliś ca
  6. gūḍhaśiraś ca
  7. gūḍhagulphaś ca
  8. ghanasaṃdhiś ca
  9. aviṣamasamapādaś ca
  10. āyatapārṇiś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  11. snigdhapāṇilekhaś ca
  12. tulyapāṇilekhaś ca
  13. gambhīrapāṇilekhaś ca
  14. ajihmapāṇilekhaś ca
  15. anupūrvapāṇilekhaś ca
  16. bimboṣṭhaś ca
  17. noccavacanaśabdaś ca
  18. mudutaruṇatāmrajihvaś ca
  19. gajagarjitābhistanitameghasvaramadhuramañjughoṣaś ca
  20. paripūrṇavyañjanaś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  21. pralambabāhuś ca
  22. śucigātravastusaṃpannaś ca
  23. mṛdugātraś ca
  24. viśālagātraś ca
  25. adīnagātraś ca
  26. anupūrvonnatagātraś ca
  27. susamāhitagātraś ca
  28. suvibhaktagātraś ca
  29. pṛthuvipulasuparipūrṇajānumaṇḍalaś ca
  30. vṛttagātraś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  31. suparimṛṣṭagātraś ca
  32. ajihmavṛṣabhagātraś ca
  33. anupūrvagātraś ca
  34. gambhīranābhiś ca
  35. ajihmanābhiś ca
  36. anupūrvanābhiś ca
  37. śucyācāraś ca
  38. ṛṣbhavatsamantaprāsādikaś ca
  39. paramasuviśuddhavitimirālokasamantaprabhaś ca
  40. nāgavilambitagatiś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  41. siṃhavikrāntagatiś ca
  42. ṛṣabhavikrāntagatiś ca
  43. haṃsavikrāntagatiś ca
  44. abhipradakṣiṇāvartagatiś ca
  45. vṛttakukṣiś ca
  46. mṛṣṭakukṣiś ca
  47. ajihmakukṣiś ca
  48. cāpodaraś ca
  49. vyapagatacchandadoṣanīlakāduṣṭaśarīraś ca
  50. vṛttadaṃṣṭraś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  51. tīkṣṇadaṃṣṭraś ca
  52. anupūrvadaṃṣṭraś ca
  53. tuṅganāsaś ca
  54. śucinayanaś ca
  55. vimalanayanaś ca
  56. prahasitanayanaś ca
  57. āyatanayanaś ca
  58. viśālanayanaś ca
  59. nīlakuvalayadalasadṛṣanayanaś ca
  60. sahitabhrūś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  61. citrabhrūś ca
  62. asitabhrūś ca
  63. saṃgatabhrūś ca
  64. anupūrvabhrūś ca
  65. pīnagaṇḍaś ca
  66. aviṣamagaṇḍaś ca
  67. vyapagatagaṇḍadoṣaś ca
  68. anupahatakruṣṭaś ca
  69. suviditendriyaś ca
  70. suparipūrṇendriyaś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.
  71. saṃgatamukhalalāṭaś ca
  72. paripūrṇottamāṅgaś ca
  73. asitakeśaś ca
  74. sahitakeśaś ca
  75. surabhikeśaś ca
  76. aparuṣakeśaś ca
  77. anākulakeśaś ca
  78. anupūrvakeśaś ca
  79. sukuñjitakeśaś ca
  80. śrīvatsasvastikanandyāvartavardhamānasaṃsthānakeśaś ca mahārāja sarvārthasiddhaḥ kumāraḥ.

[Quelle: Lalitavistara (ed. by Rajendra Lal Mitra. -- Calcutta, 1887. -- (Bibliotheca Indica). -- S. 121; ed. by S. Lefmann. -- Halle, 1902. -- S. 106; ed. by P. L. Vaidya. -- Darbhanga, 1958. -- (Buddhist Sanskrit texts ; No. 1). -- S. 75, Zl. 7ff.)]

There are also 80 secondary characteristics (Pali: Anubyanjana):
  1. He has beautiful fingers and toes.
  2. He has well-proportioned fingers and toes.
  3. He has tube-shaped fingers and toes.
  4. His fingernails and toenails have a rosy tint.
  5. His fingernails and toenails are slightly upturned at the tip.
  6. His fingernails and toenails are smooth and rounded without ridges.
  7. His ankles and wrists are rounded and undinted.
  8. His both feet are equal length.
  9. He has a beautiful gait, like that of a king-elephant.
  10. He has a stately gait, like that of a king-lion.
  11. He has a beautiful gait, like that of a swan.
  12. He has a majestic gait, like that of a royal ox.
  13. His right foot leads when walking.
  14. His knees have no protruding kneecaps.
  15. He has the demeanour of a great man.
  16. His navel is without blemish.
  17. He has a deep-shaped abdomen.
  18. He has clockwise marks on the abdomen.
  19. His thighs are rounded like banana sheafs.
  20. His two arms are shaped like an elephant's trunk.
  21. The lines on the palms of his hands have a rosy tint.
  22. His skin is thick or thin as it should be.
  23. His skin is unwrinkled.
  24. His body is spotless and without lumps.
  25. His body is unblemished above and below.
  26. His body is absolutely free of impurities.
  27. He has the strength of 1,000 crore elephants or 100,000 crore men. Note: A crore is equal to 10 millions.
  28. He has a protruding nose.
  29. His nose is well proportioned.
  30. His upper and lower lips are equal in size and have a rosy tint.
  31. His teeth are unblemished and with no plaque.
  32. His teeth are long like polished conches.
  33. His teeth are smooth and without ridges.
  34. His five sense-organs are unblemished.
  35. His four canine teeth are crystal and rounded.
  36. His face is long and beautiful.
  37. His cheeks are radiant.
  38. The lines on his palms are deep.
  39. The lines on his palms are long.
  40. The lines on his palms are straight.
  41. The lines on his palms have a rosy tint.
  42. His body emanates a halo of light extending around him for two meters.
  43. His cheek cavities are fully rounded and smooth.
  44. His eyelids are well proportioned.
  45. The five nerves of his eyes are unblemished.
  46. The tips of his bodily hair are neither curved nor bent.
  47. He has a rounded tongue.
  48. His tongue is soft and has a rosy-tint.
  49. His ears are long like lotus petals.
  50. His earholes are beautifully rounded.
  51. His sinews and tendons don't stick out.
  52. His sinews and tendons are deeply embedded in the flesh.
  53. His topknot is like a crown.
  54. His forehead is well-proportioned in length and breadth.
  55. His forehead is rounded and beautiful.
  56. His eyebrows are arched like a bow.
  57. The hair of his eyebrows is fine.
  58. The hair of his eyebrows lies flat.
  59. He has large brows.
  60. His brows reach the outward corner of his eyes.
  61. His skin is fine throughout his body.
  62. His whole body has abundant signs of good fortune.
  63. His body is always radiant.
  64. His body is always refreshed like a lotus flower.
  65. His body is exquisitely sensitive to touch.
  66. His body has the scent of sandalwood.
  67. His body hair is consistent in length.
  68. He has fine bodily hair.
  69. His breath is always fine.
  70. His mouth always has a beautiful smile.
  71. His mouth has the scent of a lotus flower.
  72. His hair has the colour of a dark shadow.
  73. His hair is strongly scented.
  74. His hair has the scent of a white lotus.
  75. He has curled hair.
  76. His hair does not turn grey.
  77. He has fine hair.
  78. His hair is untangled.
  79. His hair has long curls.
  80. He has a topknot as if crowned with a flower garland.

[Quelle der Übersetzung: -- Zugriff am 2006-05-05]

3 Strahlenkranz (ketumālā) von doppelter Armspanne

95. Etena nimmitaṃ rūpaṃ,
īdisaṃ kīdisaṃ nu kho;
tathāgatassa rūpan ti,
āsi pītunnatunnato.


Asoka war immer mehr von Begeisterung erfasst, da er dachte: "Wenn schon die vom Nägakönig gebildete Gestalt Buddhas so ist, wie mus dann erst die reale Gestalt des Wahrheitsfinders sein!"

96. Akkhipūjan ti saññātaṃ,
taṃ sattāhaṃ nirantaraṃ;
mahāmahaṃ mahārāja,
kārāpesi mahiddhiko.


Der wundermächtige Großkönig ließ sieben Tage lang ohne Unterbruch ein großes Fest namens "Augenverehrung"1 veranstalten.


1 Augenverehrung (akkhipūjā)

"AKKHIPŪJĀ, a festival held by the emperor Asoka when the nāga king Mahākāla created for him, at his request, the figure of the Buddha.

It is said that Asoka, having heard that Mahākāla, whose life-span was one kalpa, had seen all the four Buddhas of the present kalpa and was therefore able to create the figure of the Buddha by his miraculous powers, had the nāga king brought to his presence, fettered with a chain of gold. Asoka paid him great honours and requested him to create the bodily form of the Buddha. Mahākāla complied with his request and created a beautiful figure of the Buddha (manoharaṃ buddharūpaṃ) with all the major and minor characteristics of a Buddha's body. On seeing this Asoka was filled with joy and wonder and said, " If the created figure is like this, how should the actual Buddha be ? " Thus the emperor was overwhelmed with joy and for seven days incessantly, he held the great festival called the ' festival of the eyes' (akkhipūjā : Mhv. v, 87-94).

The text does not explain what this festival of the eyes was, but the commentary (MhvA. pp. 141-2) says that on seeing the figure, the emperor refrained from doing anything else, even taking food, and gazed at it, standing with unwinking eyes for seven days, as a way of honouring the Buddha.

The commentary further says that the concentration of any one of the five senses on a suitable sense-object is a way of honouring that particular object.

This Mahāvaṃsa legend of Asoka and Mahākāla is found also in the Samantapāsādikā (i, 43—4)."

[Quelle: A. G. S. Kariyawasam. -- In: Encyclopaedia of Buddhism. -- Colombo : Government of Sri Lanka. -- Band: 1. -- Fascilcle Ākhaṅkheyya Sutta - Anabhirati. - -1964. -- S. 356f.]

Sāsanappaveso niṭṭhito.

Zu Kapitel 5, Vers 97 - 153: Moggaliputta-Tissa