Zitierweise / cite as:
Payer, Alois <1944 - >: Quellenkunde zur indischen Geschichte bis 1858. -- 12. Chinesische Quellen. -- 2. Zum Beispiel: Xuanzang (玄奘) <603 - 664>: Buddhist records of the Western world (大唐西域記), book VIII/IX. -- Fassung vom 2008-05-13. -- http://www.payer.de/quellenkunde/quellen122.htm
Erstmals publiziert als:
Xuánzàng (玄奘) <603 - 664>: Si-yu-ki : Buddhist records of the Western World. / translated from the Chinese of Hiuen Tsiang (A.D. 629), by Samuel Beal [1825 - 1889]. -- London : Trübner, 1884. -- 2 vol ; 21 cm. -- (Trübner's Oriental series). -- Vol. 2. -- S. 82 - 185. -- Originaltitel: 大唐西域記. -- Online: http://www.archive.org/details/siyukibuddhistre01hsuoft ; http://www.archive.org/details/siyukibuddhistre02hsuoft. -- Zugriff am 2005-05-05
Erstmals hier publiziert: 2008-05-13
Anlass: Lehrveranstaltung FS 2008
©opyright: Public domain.
Dieser Text ist Teil der Abteilung Sanskrit von Tüpfli's Global Village Library
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Contains the First Part of the Account of the Country of Magadha (Mo-kie-t'o).
Abb.: Xuánzàng's Reisen in der Gangesebene
[Quelle der Abb.: Cunningham, Alexander <1814 - 1893>: The ancient geography of India / ed. with introduction ande notes by Surendranath Majumdar Sastri. -- New. ed. -- Calcutta : Chuckervertty, Chatterjee & Co., 1924. -- 770 S. : Ill. -- S. Vor S. 445.]
THE country of Magadha (Mo-kie-t'o)1 is about 5000 li [里] in circuit. The walled cities have but few inhabitants, but the towns2 are thickly populated. The soil is rich and fertile and the grain cultivation abundant. There is an unusual sort of rice grown here, the grains of which are large and scented and of an exquisite taste. It is specially remarkable for its shining colour. It is commonly called "the rice for the use of the great."3 As the ground is low and damp, the inhabited towns are built on the high uplands. After the first month of summer and before the second month of autumn, the level country is flooded, and communication can be kept up by boats. The manners of the people are simple and honest. The temperature is pleasantly hot; they esteem very much the pursuit of learning and profoundly respect the religion of Buddha. There are some fifty saṅghārāmas, with about 10,000 priests, of whom the greater number study the teaching of the Great Vehicle. There are ten Deva temples, occupied by sectaries of different persuasions, who are very numerous.
1 Or, it may mean the chief city or capital
2 Yih, the towns ; Julien gives villages.
3 This appears to be the rice called Mahāśālī and Sugandhikā (Julien)
To the south of the river Ganges there is an old city about 70 li [里] round.. Although it has been long deserted, its foundation walls still survive. Formerly, when men's [S. 83] lives were incalculably long, it was called Kusumapura (K'u-su-nio-pu-lo),4 so called because the palace of the king had many flowers. Afterwards, when men's age reached several thousands of years, then its name was changed to Pāṭaliputra5 (Po-ch'a-li-tsu-ch'ing).
4 Explained in a note to mean Hiang-hu-kong-sh'ing,—the city, or royal precinct, of the scented flower (kusuma).
5 The text seems to refer the foundation of this city to a remote period, and in this respect is in agreement with Diodoros, who says (lib. ii. cap. 39) that this city επιφανεστατη κει μεγιστη was founded by Herakles. The Buddhist accounts speak of it as a village, Pāṭagāma, which was being strengthened and enlarged by Ajātaśatru, contemporary of Buddha, for the purpose of repelling the advance of the Vṛijjis. See Sac. Books of the East, vol. xi pp. 16,17; Bigandet, Life of Gaudama, p. 257 Fo-sho-hing-tsan-king, p. 249, n. 3; Cunningham, Anc. Geog. of India, p. 453.
At the beginning there was a Brāhmaṇ of high talent and singular learning.. Many thousands flocked to him to receive instruction. One day all the students went out on a tour of observation; one of them betrayed a feeling of unquiet and distress. His fellow-students addressed him and said, "What troubles you, friend ?" He said, "I am in my full maturity (beauty) with perfect strength, and yet I go on wandering about here like a lonely shadow till years and months have passed, and my duties (manly duties)6 not performed. Thinking of this, my words are sad and my heart is afflicted."
6 So it seems, from the story following, the passage must be understood. Julien confines the meaning to his "studies" not yet completed. But there would be no point in the pretended marriage, if that were his regret.
On this his companions in sport replied, "We must seek then for your good a bride and her friends." Then they supposed two persons to represent the father and mother of the bridegroom, and two persons the father and mother of the bride,7 and as they were sitting under a Paṭali (Po-ch'a-li) tree, they called it the tree of the son-in-law.8 Then they gathered seasonable fruits and pure [S. 84]
7 This is the natural translation of the passage, and makes good sense without the alteration proposed by Julien.
8 That is, they made the tree the father-in-law of the student; in other words, he was to marry the daughter of the tree, a Pāṭali flower (Bignonia suaveolens). I can find no authority for Julien's statement that the word son-in-law corresponds to Pāṭali ; this statement is also repeated by Eitel, Handbook, sub voc Pāṭala,
water, and followed all the nuptial customs, and requested a time to be fixed. Then the father9 of the supposed bride, gathering a twig with flowers on it, gave it to the student and said, "This is your excellent partner; be graciously pleased to accept her." The student's heart was rejoiced as he took her to himself. And now, as the sun was setting, they proposed to return home ; but the young student, affected by love, preferred to remain.
9 We must suppose him to represent the tree, the real father.
Then the other said, "All this was fun ; pray come back with us ; there are wild beasts in this forest ; we are afraid they will kill you." But the student preferred to remain walking up and down by the side of the tree.
After sunset a strange light lit up the plain, the sound of pipes and lutes with their soft music (was heard), and the ground was covered with a sumptuous carpet. Suddenly an old man of gentle mien was seen coming, supporting himself by his staff, and there was also an old mother leading a young maiden. They were accompanied by a procession along the way, dressed in holiday attire and attended with music. The old man then pointed to the maiden and said, "This is your worship's wife (lady)." Seven days then passed in carousing and music, when the companions of the student, in doubt whether he had been destroyed by wild beasts, went forth and came to the place. They found him alone in the shade of the tree, sitting as if facing a superior guest. They asked him to return with them, but he respectfully declined.
After this he entered of his own accord the city, to pay respect to his relatives, and told them of this adventure from beginning to end. Having heard it with wonder, he returned with all his relatives and friends to the middle of the forest, and there they saw the flowering tree become a great mansion ; servants of all kinds were hurrying to and fro on every side, and the old man came forward and received them with politeness, and entertained them with all kinds of dainties served up amidst the sound of music. [S. 85] After the usual compliments, the guests returned to the city and told to all, far and near, what had happened.
After the year was accomplished the wife gave birth to a son, when the husband said to his spouse, "I wish now to return, but yet I cannot bear to be separated from you (your bridal residence) ; but if I rest here I fear the exposure to wind and weather."
The wife having heard this, told her father. The old man then addressed the student and said, "Whilst living contented and happy why must you go back ? I will build you a house ; let there be no thought of desertion." On this his servants applied themselves to the work, and in less than a day it was finished.
When the old capital of Kusumapura10 was changed, this town was chosen, and from the circumstance of the genii building the mansion of the youth the name henceforth of the country was Pāṭaliputra pura (the city of the son of the Pāṭali tree).
10 From this it would appear that Kusumapura was not on the same site as Pāṭaliputra. Rājagṛiha was the capital in the time of Ajātaśatru, and it was he who strengthened Pāṭaliputra. In the next clause it is said that Aśoka changed his capital from Rājagṛiha to Pāṭaliputra. He is described as the great-grandson of Bimbisāra, and therefore the grandson of Ajātaśatru. The Vāyu Purāṇa states that Kusumapura or Pāṭaliputra was founded by Raja Udayāśva, the grandson of Ajātaśatru; but the Mahāvaṃso makes Udaya the son of the king. See Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 453.
To the north of the old palace of the king is a stone pillar several tens of feet high ; this is the place where Aśoka (Wu-yau) rāja made " a hell." In the hundredth year after the Nirvāṇa of Tathāgata, there was a king called Aśoka ('O-shu-kia), who was the great-grandson of Bimbisāra-rāja.11 He changed his capital from Rājagṛiha to Pāṭali (pura), and built an outside rampart to surround the old city. Since then many generations have [S. 86]
11 Hiuen Tsiang uses in this passage the phonetic equivalents for Aśoka, 'O-shu-kia; on this Dr. Oldenberg founds an argument that the king referred to is not Dharmāśoka, but Kālāśoka (Vinaya Piṭakam, vol. i.,Introd., p. xxxiii. n.) But a note in the text states that 'O'Shu-kia is the Sanskrit form of Wu-yau; the latter in the Chinese form, signifying "sorrowless." For Bimbisāra, see p. 102, n. 41.
passed, and now there only remain the old foundation walls (of the city). The saṅghārāmas, Deva temples, and stūpas which lie in ruins may be counted by hundreds. There are only two or three remaining (entire). To the north of the old palace,12 and bordering on the Ganges river, there is a little town which contains about 1000 houses.
12 This may refer to Kusumapura, the "flowery palace" city, or to the palace in the old town of Pāṭaliputra.
At first when Aśoka (Wu-yau) rāja ascended the throne, he exercised a most cruel tyranny ; he constituted a hell for the purpose of torturing living creatures. He surrounded it with high walls with lofty towers. He placed there specially vast furnaces of molten metal, sharp scythes, and every kind of instrument of torture like those in the infernal regions. He selected an impious man13 whom he appointed lord of the hell. At first every criminal in the empire, whatever his fault, was consigned to this place of calamity and outrage; afterwards all those who passed by the place were seized and destroyed. All who came to the place were killed without any chance of self-defence.
13 There seems to be only one man ; Julien has "un troupe de scélérats." The story of this place of torment is found also in Fa-hian, cap. xxxii.
At this time a Śramaṇa, just entered the religious order, was passing through the suburbs begging food, when he came to hell-gate. The impious keeper of the place laid hold upon him to destroy him. The Śramaṇa, filled with fear, asked for a respite to perform an act of worship and confession. Just then he saw a man bound with cords enter the prison. In a moment they cut off his hands and feet, and pounded his body in a mortar, till all the members of his body were mashed up together in confusion.
The Śramaṇa having witnessed this, deeply moved with pity, arrived at the conviction of the impermanence (anitya) of all earthly things, and reached the fruit of "exemption from learning" (Arhatship). Then the infernal [S. 87] lictor said, "Now you must die." The Śramaṇa having become an Arhat, was freed in heart from the power of birth and death, and so, though cast into a boiling caldron, it was to him as a cool lake, and on its surface there appeared a lotus flower, whereon he took his seat. The infernal lictor, terrified thereat, hastened to send a messenger to the king to tell him of the circumstance. The king having himself come and beheld the sight, raised his voice in loud praise of the miracle.
The keeper, addressing the king, said, "Mahārāja, you too must die." "And why so ?" said the king. "Because of your former decree with respect to the infliction of death, that all who came to the walls of the hell should be killed ; it was not said that the king might enter and escape death."
The king said, "The decree was indeed established, and cannot be altered. But when the law was made, were you excepted ? You have long destroyed life. I will put an end to it." Then ordering the attendants, they seized the lictor and cast him into a boiling caldron. After his death the king departed, and levelled the walls, filled up the ditches, and put an end to the infliction of such horrible punishments.
To the south of the earth-prison (the hell), and not far off, is a stūpa. Its foundation walls are sunk, and it is in a leaning, ruinous condition. There remains, however, the crowning jewel of the cupola.14 This is made of carved stone, and has a surrounding balustrade.15 This was the [S. 88] first (or, one) of the 84,000 (stūpas). Aśoka-rāja erected it by the power (merit) of man16 in the middle of his royal precinct (or palace). It contains a ching (measure) of relics of Tathāgata. Spiritual indications constantly manifest themselves, and a divine light is shed round it from time to time.
14 Shai pao, the distinctive or strong ornament. It seems to refer to "the tee (htī)," as it is called; the ornamental enclosure above the cupola would represent the region of the heaven of the thirty-three Devas.
15 So the dome of Sanchi is surmounted as restored by Mr. Fergusson, Tree and Serpent Worship, pl. ii. (see also the remarks of the same writer, op. cit. p. 100, 1st ed.) The enclosed space or box on the summit of the stūpa is not, however, a
simulated relic-box, but represents the first heaven, or the Trayastriṃśas heaven of Śakra and the thirty-two Devas. The Devas, therefore, are constantly represented in the sculptures as surrounding this enclosure and offering their gifts, in token of the relics of Buddha (his hair, golden bowl, &c.), taken there for worship. The Tee or Htī is the cone of metal circles, raised above this enclosed space, representing the lands (khetas, or kṣetras) above the Trayastriṃśas heaven.
16 Or it may probably be "by his religious merit as a man."
After King Aśoka had destroyed the hell, he met Upagupta,17 a great Arhat, who, by the use of (proper) means,18 allured him in a right way according as the opportunity (or, springs of action, i.e., his power or capacity to believe) led, and converted him. The king addressed the Arhat and said, "Thanks to my acquired merit in former births, I have got (by promise) my kingly authority, but in consequence of my faults I did not, by meeting Buddha, obtain conversion. Now, then, I desire in all the greater degree to honour the bequeathed remains of his body by building stūpas."
17 For some remarks on Upagupta (Kin-hu), see vol. i. p. 182, n. 48.
18 Upāya, expedients or skilful use of means.
The Arhat said, "My earnest desire is that the great king by his merits may be able to employ the invisible powers (the spirits) as agents in fulfilling his vow to protect the three precious ones." And then, because of the opportune occasion, he entered largely on the narrative of his offering the ball of earth, and on that account of Buddha's prediction, as the origin of his desire to build.19
19 The offering of the ball of earth refers to the circumstance related by Fa-hian at the opening of chap, xxxii. Julien has overlooked this, and refers the offering to the charity of Aśoka in giving Jambudvīpa to the priests. But it is plain that no prediction of Buddha hinged on this. Kaninhka is said also to have been converted by the relation of a prediction referring to him made by Buddha, and explained by a shepherd boy.
The king having heard this, was overpowered, and he summoned the spirits to assemble, and commanded them, saying, "By the gracious disposal and spiritual efficacy of the guiding power of the King of the Law I have become, as the result of my good actions in former states of life, the highest amongst them. (I wish now) with especial care [S. 89] to prepare a means of paying religious worship to the bequeathed body of Tathāgata. Do you, then, spirits and genii, by your combined strength and agreement of purpose, raise stūpas for the relics of Buddha throughout the whole of Jambudvīpa, to the very last house of all20 (i.e., to the extremity of the land). The mind (or purpose) is mine, the merit of completing it shall be yours. The advantage to be derived from this excellent act of religion I wish not to be confined to one person only ; let each of you, then, raise a building in readiness (for completion), and then come and receive my further commands."
20 The text is difficult. Julien translates it "dans chaque ville possédant un keou-tchi (un koti de souvarnas)." This may be correct but the phrase mwan keou chi seems to me to refer to the full tale of inhabited places—everywhere.
Having received these instructions, the genii commenced their meritorious work in the several quarters where they were ; and having finished the task (so far), they came together to ask for further directions. Aśokarāja (Wu-yau-wang) having opened the stūpas of the eight countries where they were built, divided the relics, and having delivered them to the genii, he addressed the Arhat21 and said, "My desire is that the relics should be deposited in every place at the same moment exactly : although ardently desirous of this, my mind has not yet been able to perfect a plan for accomplishing it."22
21 That is, Upagupta.
22 Such appears to be the meaning of the passage. Julien translates it, "my desire is not yet accomplished." His desire was to find out a plan or method for depositing the relics at the same instant.
The Arhat addressed the king and said, "Command the genii to go each to his appointed place and regard the sun.23 When the sun becomes obscured and its shape as if a hand covered it, then is the time : drop the relics into the stūpas" The king having received these instructions, gave orders accordingly to the genii to expect the appointed day.
23 Or it may be, "await an appointed day."
Meantime the king, Aśoka, watching the sun's disc, [S. 90] waited for the sign ; then at noon (or the day) the Arhat, by his spiritual power, stretched forth his hand and concealed the sun. At the places where the stūpas had been built for completion, all (the genii24) observing this event, at the same moment concluded the meritorious undertaking.
24 So it must signify, not the inhabitants of the several places, but the genii who were awaiting the signal.
By the side of the stūpa, and not far from it, in a vihāra, is a great stone on which Tathāgata walked. There is still the impression of both his feet on it, about eighteen inches long and six inches broad; both the right and left impress have the circle-sign,25 and the ten toes are all fringed with figures of flowers (or flower scrolls) and forms of fishes, which glisten brightly in the light (morning light}. In old time. Tathāgata, being about to attain Nirvāṇa, was going northward to Kuśinagara, when turning round to the south and looking back at Magadha, he stood upon this stone and said to Ānanda, "Now for the very last time I leave this foot-impression, being about to attain Nirvāṇa, and looking at Magadha. A hundred years hence there shall be a King Aśoka;26 he shall build here his capital and establish his court ; he shall protect the three religious treasures and command the genii."
25 The circle-sign is the chakra; this is the principal mark on the sole of Buddha's feet; see Alabaster's Wheel of the Law, p. 286 and plate. Julien translates the passage as if the chakra were visible on the right and left of the feet, instead of on the right and left imprint of the feet.
26 It is plain that this prediction concerning Wu-yau-wang, supposed by Oldenberg always to refer to Dharmaśoka (see above, note 11), relates to O-chu-kia or Kālāśoka, for it was he, the grandson of Ajātaśatru, who established his capital at Pāṭaliputra; so also in the next sentence. Hiuen Tsiang probably translated all the records relating to Aśoka as though referring to the same person, using either 'O-shu-kia or 'O-yu, or Wu-yau, indifferently.
When Aśoka (Wu-yau) had ascended the throne, he changed his capital and built this town ; he enclosed the stone with the impression ; and as it was near the royal precinct, he paid it constant personal worship. Afterwards the kings of the neighbourhood wished to carry it off to [S. 91] their own country; but although the stone is not large, they could not move it at all.
Lately Śaśāṅka-rāja, when he was overthrowing and destroying the law of Buddha, forthwith came to the place where that stone is, for the purpose of destroying the sacred marks. Having broken it into pieces, it came whole again, and the ornamental figures as before ; then he flung it into the river Ganges, but it came back to its old place.
By the side of the stone is a stūpa, which marks the place where the four past Buddhas walked and sat down, the traces of which still remain.
By the side of the vihāra which contains the traces of Buddha, and not far from it, is a great stone pillar about thirty feet high, with a mutilated inscription on it. This, however, is the principal part of it, viz., "Aśoka-rāja with a firm principle of faith has thrice bestowed Jambudvīpa as a religious offering on Buddha, the Dharma, and the assembly, and thrice he has redeemed it with his jewels and treasure ; and this is the record thereof." Such is the purport of the record.
To the north of the old palace is a large stone house. It looks outside like a great mountain, and within it is many tens of feet wide. This is the house which Aśokarāja commanded the genii to build for his brother who had become a recluse. Early in his life Aśoka had a half-brother (mothers brother) called Mahendra27 (Mohi-in-to-lo), who was born of a noble tribe. In dress he arrogated the style of the king; he was extravagant, wasteful, and cruel. The people were indignant, and the ministers and aged officers of the king came to him (the king), and remonstrated thus, "Your proud brother assumes a dignity as though he were some great one in comparison with others. If the government is impartial, [S. 92] then the country is contented ; if men are agreed, then the ruler is in peace : these are the principles which have been handed down to us from our fathers. We desire that you will preserve the rules of our country, and deliver to justice those who would change them." Then Aśoka-rāja addressed his brother as he wept, and said, "I have inherited (as my rule, of} government the duty of protecting and cherishing the people ; how then have you, my brother, forgotten my affection and my kindness ? It is impossible at the very beginning of my reign to neglect the laws. If I punish you, I fear the anger of -my ancestors; on the other hand, if I excuse you, I fear the opinion of the people."
27 Mahendra (translated Ta-ti, great ruler) is generally spoken of as the son of Aśoka. The Siṃhalese historical works speak of him as the first Buddhist missionary sent to Ceylon. See Mahāwanso, Turnour's transl., p. 76. Dr. Oldenberg doubts the truth of this tradition. Vinayapiṭaka, i., Introduction, lii.
Mahendra, bowing his head, replied, "I have not guarded my conduct, and have transgressed the laws of the country; I ask only an extension of my life for seven days."
On this the king placed him in a dark dungeon, and placed over him a strict guard. He provided him with every kind of exquisite meat and every necessary article. At the end of the first day the guard cried out to him, "One day has gone ; there are six days left." The sixth day having expired, as he had greatly sorrowed for his faults and had afflicted (disciplined) his body and his heart, he obtained the fruit of sanctity (became an Arhat) ; he mounted into the air and exhibited his miraculous powers (spiritual traces). Then separating himself from the pollution of the world, he went afar, and occupied the mountains and valleys (as a recluse).
Aśoka-rāja, going in his own person, addressed him as follows, "At first, in order to put in force the laws of the country, I desired to have you punished, but little did I think you would have attained to this highest rank of holiness.28 Having, however, reached this condition of detachment from the world, you can now return to your country." [S. 93]
28 That you would have mounted up in pure conduct to attain to and possess this holy fruit.
The brother replied, "Formerly I was ensnared in the net of (worldly) affections, and my mind was occupied with love of sounds (music) and beauty ; but now I have escaped all this (the dangerous city), and my mind delights in (the seclusion of) mountains and valleys. I would fain give up the world for ever (men's society) and dwell here in solitude."
The king said, "If you wish to subdue your heart in quiet, you have no need to live in the mountain fastnesses. To meet your wishes I shall construct you a dwelling."
Accordingly he summoned the genii to his presence and said to them, "On the morrow I am about to give a magnificent feast. I invite you to come together to the assembly, but you must each bring for your own seat a great stone."29 The genii having received the summons, came at the appointed time to the assembly. The king then addressed them and said, "The stones which are now arranged in order on the ground you may pile up, and, without any labour to yourselves, construct of them for me an empty house." The genii having received the order, before the day was over finished the task. Aśokarāja then himself went to invite his brother to fix his abode in this mountain cell.
29 Compare Fa-hian, chap, xxvii.
To the north of the old palace, and to the south of "the hell," is a great stone with a hollow trough in it. Aśokarāja commissioned the genii as workmen to make this hollow (vase) to use for the food which he gave to the priests when he invited them to eat.
To the south-west of the old palace there is a little mountain. In the crags and surrounding valleys there are several tens of stone dwellings which Aśoka-rāja made for Upagupta and other Arhats, by the intervention of the genii.
By the side of it is an old tower, the ruins of which are a mass of heaped-up stones. There is also a pond, the gentle ripples of which play over its surface as pure as a [S. 94] mirror. The people far and near call it the sacred water. If any one drinks thereof or washes in it, the defilement of their sins is washed away and destroyed.
To the south-west of the mountain is a collection of five stūpas. The foundations are lofty but ruinous ; what remains, however, is a good height. At a distance they look like little hills. Each of them is several tens of paces in front. Men in after-days tried to build on the top of these little stūpas. The records of India state, "In old time, when Aśoka-rāja built the 84,000 stūpas, there was still remaining five measures of relics. Therefore he erected with exceptional grandeur five other stūpas, remarkable for their spiritual portents (miraculous exhibitions), with a view to indicate the fivefold spiritual body of Tathāgata.30 Some disciples of little faith talking together argued thus, 'In old time Nanda-rāja31 built these five (stūpas) as treasure-places for his wealth (seven precious substances). In consequence of this gossip, in after-time a king of insincere faith, and excited by his covetousness, put his troops in movement, and came with his followers to dig (the stūpas). The earth shook, the mountains bent (fell), and the clouds darkened the sun, whilst from the stūpas there came a great sound like thunder. The soldiers with their leaders fell backward, and the elephants and horses took to flight. The king thus defeated, dared no longer to covet (the treasures). It is said, moreover (i.e., in the Indian records), 'With respect to the gossip of the priests there has been some doubt expressed, but we believe it to be true according to the old tradition.'" [S. 95]
30 Literally, the body of the law of Tathāgata (Ju-lai) divided into five parts. It may refer to the five skandhas; these are rūpa (sih), vedanā (sheu), saṃjñāna (siang), saṃskāra (hing), vijñāna (chi).
31 This refers to Nanda, the son of Mahānanda, called Mahāpadma, who was exceedingly avaricious. He was the son of a woman of the Śūdra class. He brought the whole earth under one umbrella (Vishṇu-Purāṇa, p. 466, Wilson's translation). In the Mahāvanso he is called Dhana-nando, because he personally devoted himself to the hoarding of treasure (Max Muller, Hist. Anc. Sansc. Lit., p. 281). The statement in the text, derived from "the old records of India," appears to identify Nanda with Aśoka, i.e., Kālāśoka.
To the south-east of the old city there is the saṅghārāma called K'iu-cha-'o-lan-mo32 (Kukkuṭārāma), which was built by Aśoka-rāja when he first became a believer in the religion of Buddha. It was a sort of first-fruit (preparation in planting the root of virtue), and a pattern of majestic construction (lofty 'building'). He gathered there a thousand priests ; a double congregation of lay people and saints made their offerings of the four necessary things, and provided gratuitously all the articles for use. This building has long been in ruins, but the foundation walls are still preserved.
32 This convent or saṅghārāma must not be confounded with the Kukkuṭapādagiri, near Gayā. See Fa-hian, cap. xxxiii. p. 132 n., also Arch. Survey of India, vol. xv. p. 4; Ind. Ant., vol. xii. p. 327; compare also Julien's remark (p. 428, n. 1).
By the side of the saṅghārāma is a great stūpa called 'O-mo-lo-kia (Āmalaka), which is the name of a fruit used as a medicine in India. King Aśoka having fallen sick and lingering for a long time, felt that he would not recover, and so desired to offer all his possessions (gems and valuables) so as to crown his religious merit (to plant high the field of merit). The minister33 who was carrying on the government was unwilling to comply with his wish. Some time after this, as he was eating part of an Āmalaka fruit, he playfully34 put the half of it (in the hand of the king) for an offering. Holding the fruit in his hand he said with a sigh to his minister, "Who now is lord of Jambudvīpa ?"
33 It may be "ministers;" the story of the text is found among Aśvaghosha's sermons. It is No. 26 as given in the Abstract of Four Lectures, p. 103.
34 In a trifling way. This translation is difficult. Julien translates it as though the king were amused as he played with the fruit, until he had reduced it to a half. This translation is more agreeable to the text. But, on the other hand, in Aśvaghosha's rendering of the story, he says that the minister offered the king a half Āmala fruit, to bestow in charity. The translation I have given requires the substitution of tan (to give in charity) for lan (cooked or thoroughly dressed).
The minister replied, "Only your majesty."
The king answered, " Not so ! I am no longer lord ; for I have only this half fruit to call my own ! Alas ! the wealth and honour of the world are as difficult to keep as [S. 96] it is to preserve the light of a lamp in the wind ! My wide-spread possessions, my name and high renown, at close of life are snatched from me, and I am in the hands of a minister violent and powerful. The empire is no longer mine ; this half fruit alone is left !"
Then he commanded an attendant officer to come, and he addressed him thus : "Take this half fruit and offer it in the garden (ārāma) of the cock (monastery] to the priests, and speak thus to the venerable ones, 'He who was formerly lord of Jambudvīpa, but now is master of only this half Āmala fruit, bows down before the priests (chief priest}. I pray you (on behalf of the king) receive this very last offering. All that I have is gone and lost, only this half fruit remains as my little possession. Pity the poverty of the offering, and grant that it may increase the seeds of his religious merit.'"
The Sthavira, in the midst of the priests, spake thus in reply : "Aśoka-rāja by his former deeds may hope to recover. Whilst the fever has held his person, his avaricious ministers have usurped his power and amassed wealth not their own. But this offering of half a fruit will secure the king an extension of life." The king having recovered from his sickness, gave large offerings to the priests. Moreover he ordered the manager of the affairs of the convent (Tin -- see Karmmadāna) to preserve the seeds35 of the fruit in a vessel of liquid fit for the purpose, and he erected this stūpa as a mark of gratitude for his prolonged life.36
35 Or, the stone or kernel. The Karmmadāna is the steward of the convent.
36 This passage is obscure, and the translation I give is not in agreement with M. Julien's. He makes the words of the Sthavira to be addressed to the other priests, and not to the messenger from the king. It appears to me that they were made in reply to the king's message, and include in them a promised anticipation of the king's recovery.
To the north-west of Āmalaka stūpa, in the middle of an old saṅghārāma, is a stūpa; it is called "establishing the sound of the ghaṇṭā (Kin-t'i)." At first there were about 100 saṅghārāmas in this city; the priests were grave [S. 97] and learned, and of high moral character. The scholars among the heretics were silent and dumb. But afterwards, when that generation of priests had died out, their successors were not equal to those gone before. Then the teachers of the heretics, during the interval, gave themselves to earnest study with a view to the mastery. Whereupon they summoned their partisans, numbering 1000 to 10,000, to assemble together within the priest's precincts, and then they addressed them saying, with a loud voice, "Strike loudly the ghaṇṭā and summon all the learned men ; let the foolish ones also stop and dispute ; if we are wrong, let them overthrow us" (or, to overthrow their errors).
They then addressed the king and asked him to decide between the weak and the strong. And now the heretical masters were men of high talent and marked learning ; the priests, although numerous, were weak in their points of verbal discussion.
The heretics said, "We have got the victory ; from this time forth let no saṅghārāma dare to sound the ghaṇṭā to call together a congregation." The king confirmed this result of the discussion, and, in agreement with it, bound the priests to the penalty. They on their part retired with shame and chagrin. For twelve years the ghaṇṭā was not sounded.
At this time lived (Na-kia-'o-la-chu-na) Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva in Southern India, as a youth of high renown for scholarship. When grown up he assumed a lofty title. Giving up his home and its pleasures, he practised himself in the acquisition of the deepest and most excellent principle of learning, and arrived at the first earth (the first degree). He had a great disciple called (Ti-po) Deva, a man illustrious for wisdom and spiritual energy. This man, arousing himself to action, said, "At Vaiśālī the followers of learning (Buddhist learners) have been defeated in argument by the heretics, and now for twelve years, days, and months together, they have not sounded [S. 98] the ghaṇṭā. I ain bold enough to wish to overturn the mountain of heresy and to light the torch of true religion."
Nāgārjuna replied, " The heretics of Vaiśālī are singularly learned; you are no match for them. I will go myself."
Deva said, "In order to trample down some rotten stems why should we overthrow a mountain ? I am bold enough to think that by the instructions I have received I can silence all the heretics. But let my master assume the side of the heretics, and I will refute you according to the points of the thesis ; and according as the question is decided, let my purpose to go or not be settled."
Then Nāgārjuna took the side of the heretics, and Deva set himself to overthrow his arguments. After seven days Nāgārjuna lost his superiority (was defeated), and said with a sigh, "False positions are easily lost; erroneous doctrines are defended with difficulty. You yourself can go ; you will overthrow those men."
Deva Bodhisattva's early reputation being known to the heretics of Vaiśālī, they forthwith called an assembly, and went at once to the king, saying, "Mahārāja ! you formerly condescended to attend to us and bind the Śramaṇas, not to sound the ghaṇṭā. We pray you issue an order that no foreign Śramaṇa be allowed to enter the city, lest they should combine together to bring about an alteration in the former law." The king consented to their request, and gave strict orders to his officers to carry it out (to spy narrowly).
Deva having come to the city, was not able to enter it ; having understood the order, he made arrangements to change his garments, and wrapped up his kashāya robe in a bundle of grass (shrubs) ; then tucking up his garments, he went straight on with his bundle on his back, and entered the city. Having come to the middle of the city, he threw away his grass bundle, put on his robes, and came to this saṅghārāma, intending to stop there. [S. 99] Knowing few people there, he had no place to lodge, and so he took up his night's rest in the Ghaṇṭā Tower, and at early dawn he struck it (the ghaṇṭā) with all his might.
The people hearing it, on investigating the matter, found that the stranger of yesternight was a travelling Bhikshu. Forthwith all the saṅghārāmas repeated the sounds (of the ghaṇṭā).
The king hearing the noise, and inquiring about it closely, could not ascertain the origin of it all ; coming to this saṅghārāma, they at length charged Deva with the deed. Deva answering said, "The ghaṇṭā is struck to assemble the congregation ; if it is not used for that purpose, what use is it ?"
The king's people answered, "In former days the congregation of priests having been defeated in argument, it was decided the ghaṇṭā should not be sounded any more, and this is twelve years since."
Deva said, "Is it so ? Nevertheless, I venture to sound afresh the drum of the law."
The messenger told the king saying, "There is a strange Śramaṇa who wishes to wipe out the former disgrace (of the priests)."
Then the king assembled the men of learning (the Buddhists), and said, by way of decree, "Whoever is defeated shall die, as a proof of his inferiority."
Then the heretics came together with their flags and drums, and began to discuss together with respect to their opinions ; each displayed the point of his argument to his best ability. Then Deva Bodhisattva, having mounted the preaching-throne, attending to their former arguments, and following each point, refuted them one by one. In less than one hour he refuted the sectaries, and the king and his ministers being satisfied, raised this venerable monument in honour of his extreme virtue (reverence).
To the north of the stūpa built where the ghaṇṭā was [S. 100] sounded is an old foundation. This was the dwelling-place of a Brāhmaṇ that was inspired by demons. At the beginning there was in this city a Brāhmaṇ who had constructed for himself a hut in a wild and desert spot far from the haunts of men ; he sacrificed to demons, seeking religious merit. By the assistance of such spiritual connection he discoursed in a high tone and disputed with eagerness. The report (echo) of his eloquent discourses resounded through the world. If any one came to propose a difficult question, he answered him after letting down a curtain. Old men of learning and of high talent could not wrest from him his precedence. Officers and people were silenced in his presence, and looked on him as a saint. At this time lived Aśvaghosha Bodhisattva ('O-shi-po-kiu-sha-pu-sa).37 His wisdom embraced all subjects, and in his career he had traversed the arguments of the three Vehicles (Little, Great, and Middle Vehicle ? ). He constantly spoke (about the Brāhmaṇ) thus : "This Brāhmaṇ is learned without a master ; he is skilful without examining the ancients ; he lives apart in the gloomy desert, and arrogates a great name. It is all done by the connivance of the evil spirits and the assistance of occult powers ; this is the way he does it ! Men, therefore, on account of his eloquence derived from the devil, are unable to reply, and exalt his renown and say he is invincible. I will go to his place, and see what all this means, and expose it."
37 Translated into Chinese by Ma-ming, "the voice of the horse." For some remarks respecting him, see Abstract of Four Lectures, p. 95 as. He is spoken of as the twelfth Buddhist patriarch. According to Tibetan accounts, he is the same as Matṛijeta (mother-child), who composed hymns for Buddhist worship (op. cit., p. 141). Nāgārjuna also was a poet, and composed a work called Suhṛid lekha (or likh), which he dedicated to his patron, Sadvaha, king of Southern Kosala (I-tsing, k. iv. fol. 5 b.)
Forthwith he went to his cabin and addressed him thus : "I have long felt respect for your illustrious qualities; pray keep up your curtain whilst I venture to [S. 101] express my mind to you." But the Brāhmaṇ, maintaining an air of proud indifference, let down his curtain in order to reply, and to the end would not face his adversary.
Aśvaghosha feeling in his heart the presence of the evil spirits, his feelings revolted, and he finished the discussion ; but as he retired he said, "I have found him out, and he shall be overthrown." Going straightway to the king, he said, "Pray condescend to permit me to propose a subject and discuss it with that lay-doctor!"
The king, hearing the request, said with feeling, "Do you know your man ? Unless well learned in the three vidyās and in the six supernatural faculties, who can discuss with him ?" Giving permission, he himself ordered his chariot in order to be present during the discussion, and to decide as to the victory.
Then Aśvaghosha discoursed on the minute words of the three Piṭakas, and alluded to the great principles of the five Vidyās, and nicely divided the length and breadth of his argument with a high and various discourse. Then the Brāhmaṇ following in the argument, Aśvaghosha said, "You have lost the thread of the subject. You must follow my points consecutively."
The Brāhmaṇ then was silent and closed his mouth.
Aśvaghosha finding fault, said, "Why do you not solve the difficulty ? Call the spirits to your help to give you words as quickly as you can ;" and then he lifted up his curtain to see how he looked.
The Brāhmaṇ, terrified, cried out, "Stop ! stop !"
Aśvaghosha, retiring, said, "This doctor has forfeited his high renown. 'A hollow fame lasts not long,' as the saying is."
The king answered and said, "Without the eminent ability of a master, who can detect the errors of the ignorant! The acumen of the person who knows men casts honour on his ancestors, and shuts out possibility of [S. 102] superiority among his successors. The country has a standing rule that such a person should ever be honoured and remembered."
Leaving the south-west angle of the city and going about 200 li [里],38 there is an old ruined saṅghārāma, by the side of which is a stūpa which from time to time reflects a divine light and displays many miracles. This place is frequented by crowds from a distance and near by, who offer up their prayers39 in worship. There are traces where the four past Buddhas sat and walked to and fro.
38 In the French translation the distance given is 200 paces. The text does not require the distance of 200 li to be reckoned in a south-westerly direction from the city ; the construction, indeed, is unusual, and it is possible that the symbol yu (corner) is an error for king (going); but as it stands, the text reads, "about two hundred li (from) the south-west angle of the city there is," &c. If the text be correct, some of the difficulties noticed by Cunningham (Anc. Geog, of Ind., p. 456) will be explained.
39 Make their requests in worship. Whatever the theory is as to the possibility of prayer in the Buddhist religion, the fact remains that prayer was offered up.
NOTE 1, p. 102. [S. 136]
The pilgrim's route from Patna to Gayā is difficult to settle. I think we must omit the passage on p. 102, 1. 5, "going about 200 li [里]," and consider the "old saṅghārāma" as being perhaps 10 li [里] beyond the south-west angle of the city. This 10 li [里], together with the two distances of 100 li [里] + 90 li [里] to the " cloud-stone mountain," will thus make up 200 li [里] (put down by mistake), and correspond with the 6 or 7 yojanas in Hwui-lih from Patna to the Ti-lo-chi-kia convent. This last place I should identify with the Barabar Hills ; but we must place the Tiladaka convent at Tilara. Hiuen Tsiang did not actually visit the spots named between the Barabar Hills and Gayā (see Ferguson's remarks, J. R. A. S., vol. vi. part 2).
To the south-west of the old saṅghārāma about 100 li [里] is the saṅghārāma of Tilaḍaka (Ti-lo-shi-kia).40 This building has four halls, belvideres of three stages, high towers, connected at intervals with double gates that open inwards (deeply]. It was built by the last descendant of Bimbisāra-rāja (Pin-pi-sha-lo).41 He made much of high talent and exalted the virtuous. Learned men from different cities and scholars from distant countries flock [S. 103] together in crowds, and reaching so far, abide in this saṅghārāma. There are 1000 priests in it who study the Great Vehicle. In the road facing the middle gate there are three vihāras, above which are placed the connected succession of metal rings (circles) with bells suspended in the air ; below they are constructed storey above storey, from the bottom to the top. They are surrounded by railings, and the doors, windows, the pillars, beams, and staircases are all carved with gilt copper in relief, and in the intervals highly decorated. The middle vihāra contains an erect image of Buddha about thirty feet high. On the left is an image of Tāra (To-lo) Bodhisattva ;42 on the right, one of Avalokiteśvara (Kwan-tsz'-tsai) Bodhisattva. Each of these images is made of metallic stone; their spiritually composed appearance inspires a mysterious awe, and their influence is felt from far (or, spreads far). In each vihāra there is a measure of relics which emit a supernatural brilliancy, and from time to time shed forth miraculous indications.
40 So Cunningham restores it And the symbol ski may represent ḍa as in Chaṇḍaka. It might also be made to represent Darśika, and as the last descendant of Bimbisāra-raja was Nāga-dāsaka, I thought at one time that this might be the right restoration. But I-tsing gives Ti-lo-ck'a as an alternative reading (Nan hae, k. iv. foL 12 b.), which can only represent Tilaḍa (as in Man ch'a for Maṇḍaka, &c.) This monastery of Tilaḍaka was three yojanas west of Nālanda, or about twenty-one miles (Vie de H. T., p. 211). In this last passage Hiuen Tsiang notices that there was an eminent priest called Prajñābhadra residing in this monastery when he visited it. When I-tsing was there a few years later, there was a priest called Prajñāchandra there. Prof. Max Müller by some mistake has placed this temple of Tilaḍaka in Surat (India, p. 312), and he speaks of it as Si-ra-chu, but it is not so in I-tsing.
41 Or Vimbasāra, juice of the Bimba' (Bryonia grandis), (see ante, p. 85) his descendant Nāgadāsaka, who appears to have preceded the nine Nandas; he seems to be the same as Mahā-Nandin. Conf. R. David's Numis. Orient., pp. 50 and 45. Is he the same as Kālāśoka ? Lassen, Ind. Alt., vol i. p. 859, and Anh., p. xxxviii.
42 Tāra, said to be a female deity of Tibetan origin, worshipped by the followers of the Yogachara school (Eitel). Tāravatī is also a form of Durgā. Ind. Ant., vol. x. p. 273.
To the south-west of the Tiladaka saṅghārāma about 90 li [里] we come to a great mountain of blue-clouded (variegated) marble,43 dark and tangled with wood. Here the divine Ṛishis dwell; poisonous snakes and savage dragons inhabit their dens, whilst numerous beasts and birds of prey dwell in the forests. On the top is a large and remarkable rock, on which is built a stūpa about ten feet or so high. This is the place where Buddha entered on ecstatic meditation. Of old, when Tathāgata descended as a spirit (to be born)44 he rested on this rock, and entered here the samādhi called "perfectly destroyed," and passed the night so. Then the Devas and spiritual saints offered [S. 104] their offerings to Tathāgata, and sounded the drums and heavenly music, and rained down great flowers. Tathāgata leaving his ecstasy, the Devas all reverenced him, and raised a stūpa composed of gold, silver, and precious stones. Now so long time has elapsed since then, that the precious substances are changed into stone. No one has visited the spot for ages ; but looking at the mountain from a distance, one can see different kinds of beasts and snakes turning round it to the right. The Devas and Ṛishis and spiritual saints accompany them in a body, praising and worshipping.
43 Yun shih is "variegated marble" (cloud-stone). Whether this be the meaning in the text it is difficult to say. Julien gives "enveloped with dark clouds." This may be so ; the original is literally, "cloud-rock-dark-tangled."
44 The phrase Kiang shin, descend spiritually, is generally applied to the incarnation of Buddha ; in this passage, however, it may simply mean "descended as a spirit."
On the eastern summit of the mountain there is a stūpa. Here Tathāgata formerly stood for a time beholding the country of Magadha.
To the north-west of the mountain 30 li [里] or so, on a declivity of the mountain, is a saṅghārāma; it is flanked by a high precipice, and the lofty walls and towers stand up in intervals of the rocks. The priests are about fifty in number, who all study the great Vehicle. This is the place where Guṇamati (Kiu-na-mo-ti) Bodhisattva overcame the heretic. In the early time there was in this mountain a heretic called Mādhava (Mo-ta-po), who at first followed the law of the Saṅkhyā (Seng-kie) system, and practised the acquirement of wisdom. He had studied to the bottom the doctrine of "the extreme void," as found in the orthodox and erroneous (books). His fame was great, and surpassed that of former teachers, and outweighed all then living. The king honoured him exceedingly, and named him "the treasure of the country." The ministers and people regarded him with admiration, and spoke of him as "the teacher of the household." The learned men of the neighbouring countries acknowledged his merits and honoured his virtue, and compared him to the most eminent of his predecessors ; a man, verily ! highly accomplished. He had as his means of subsistence two towns of the district, and the surrounding houses paid him for the privilege of building (tenant dues ?). [S. 105]
At this time in Southern India there lived Guṇamati45 Bodhisattva, who in his youth had displayed great talents and acquired in early life a brilliant reputation. By close study he had penetrated the meaning of the three Piṭakas, and investigated the four truths.46 Hearing that Mādhava discussed on the most mysterious and subtle questions, he desired to humble him by overcoming him (in argument). He ordered one of his followers to carry a letter thus written (to his adversary) : "I have heard with all respect of Mādhava's virtuous ease. You must now, without thought of fatigue, take up again your ancient studies, for in three years' time I intend to overthrow your brilliant reputation."
45 Translated by the Chinese "virtue and wisdom" (Tih hwui).
46 The four truths, the foundation of the Buddhist dogma, are— (i)the truth of "suffering" (duḥkha); (2) the increase or accumulation of misery from the passions (samudaya); (3) the extinction or destruction of suffering is possible
(nirodha) ; (4) the way or means (mārga). See Childers, Pali Dict., sub voc. Ariyasaccam; Burnouf, Lotus p. 517; Manual of Buddhism, p. 496 ; also Julien in loco, n. 1.
And so in the second and third years he sent a messenger with the same tidings ; and now when he was about to go to meet him, he again wrote a letter, saying : "The appointed period has expired; your studies, such as they are, I am now coming (to investigate) ; you ought to know the fact."
Mādhava now was alarmed, and gave orders to his disciples and to the inhabitants of the towns :47 "From this time forth give no hospitality to the Śramaṇa heretics ; let this order be generally known and obeyed."
47 That is, the two towns he held in feoffment.
At this time Guṇamati Bodhisattva, with his staff in hand, arrived at the town of Mādhava. The people who guarded the town, in agreement to the order, would give him no hospitality.48 The Brāhmaṇs, moreover, deriding him, said, "What mean you by your shaven head and your singular dress ? Begone from this ! there is no place here for you to stop." [S. 106]
48 Would have no intercourse with him.
Guṇamati Bodhisattva desiring to overthrow the heretic, sought to remain the night in the town, and so he said with gentle words, "You, in pursuing your worldly studies, observe a pure conduct. I also, in studying higher truth, observe a pure line of conduct.49 Our life being alike,50 why do you exclude me ?"
49 They were both men of "pure conduct." The expression "pure brother" is applied to the Buddhist convert. The word Brāhmaṇ also is explained by "a pure-lived man."
50 As we both aim at pure conduct.
But the Brāhmaṇs would have no words with him, and only drove him from the place. Leaving the town, he went into a great forest in which savage beasts prowled about to destroy all passers-by. At this time there was a faithful brother51 who, fearing (the risk he ran from) the beasts and the prickly thorns, hastened to him, staff in hand. Having met him, he said to the Bodhisattva, "In Southern India there is a Bodhisattva called Guṇamati, of far-spread renown ; because this man wants to come here to discuss principles of belief, the master of the town, being afraid of him and his fame, has strictly enjoined to give no shelter to the Śramaṇas, and because I am afraid lest some accident should happen to him, I have come to accompany him in his journey, and to assure him of safety (that he may rest free from fear of the other)!"
51 A pure believer.
Guṇamati replied, "Most kind believer, I am Guṇamati." The disciple having heard this, with the greatest reverence replied to Guṇamati thus : "If what you say be true, you must go quickly (onwards)." Leaving the deep forest, they stopped awhile on the open plain ; the faithful believer, following with his torch (?) and holding his bow, kept guard on the right and left. The (first) division of the night being past, he addressed Guṇamati and said, "It is better for us to go, lest men, knowing that you have come, should plot together to kill you."
Guṇamati, expressing his gratitude, said, "I dare not disobey you !" On this, following him, they came to the king's palace and said to the door-keeper, there is a [S. 107] Śramaṇa here who has come from a distance ; he prays the king to agree in condescension to permit him to discuss with Mādhava.
The king hearing the news, moved by his feelings, said, "This man is bereft of reason," and then he ordered an officer to go to the place where Mādhava was, with this royal order : "There is a foreign Śramaṇa come here who seeks to discuss with you. I have now ordered the hall for the discussion to be prepared and watered ; I have told those in the neighbourhood and far off to await the usual arrangements after your coming. Pray condescend to come forthwith."
Mādhava asked the messenger of the king, "This surely is the doctor Guṇamati of South India." "Yes," he said, "it is he."
Mādhava hearing this, his heart was very sad, but as he could not well avoid the difficulty, he set out for the hall of discussion, where the king, the ministers, and the people were all assembled desiring to hear this great controversy. Guṇamati first laid down the principles of his school, and continued his speech till the setting of the sun. Then Mādhava excusing himself on account of his age and infirmities, to defer his answer, asked permission to retire and meditate. He would then return and answer every objection (difficulty) in order.52 At the early morn he returned and ascended the throne, and so they went on to the sixth day, but on that day he vomited blood and died. When on the point of death he gave this command to his wife, "You have high talent ; do not forget the affront paid to me." When Mādhava was dead, she concealed the fact and had no funeral ceremonies; and clothing herself in shining apparel, she entered forthwith the assembly where the discussion was held, and a general clamour was raised as the people said one to another, "Mādhava, who boasted of his talents, is unable to reply [S. 108] to Guṇamati, and so he sends his wife to make up for his deficiency."
52 This sentence appears to be parenthetical, and is introduced to explain the language used by Guṇamati.
Guṇamati, addressing the wife, said, "He who could bind you, has been bound by me."
Mādhava's wife, seeing the difficulty, retired. The king then said, "What secret words are these at which she remains silent ?"
Guṇamati said, "Alas ! Mādhava is dead ! and his wife desires to come and discuss with me !"
The king said, "How know you this ? Pray explain it to me."
Then Guṇamati said, "When the wife came her face was pale as death, and her words were toned in bitter enmity. I knew therefore that Mādhava is dead ! 'Able to bind you,' is a phrase applicable to her husband."
The king having sent a messenger to verify the statement, he found it even so ; then the king in gratitude said, "The law of Buddha is a mysterious one ! Eminent sages succeed one another without interruption ; with no personal object they guard themselves in wisdom and use their secret knowledge for the purpose of converting (transforming the world). According to the old rules of the country the praises of such a sage (or, of your virtue) should be ever celebrated."
Guṇamati replied, "Whatever poor talents I have, I reserve them for the benefit of all that lives ; and when I would draw them to the truth first of all I subdue their pride, then use the influences of converting power. Now then, in this case, king, let the descendants of Mādhava's territory for a thousand generations employ themselves in the service of a saṅghārāma. Your instructions will extend, then, from age to age, and your reputation will be immortal. Persons of a pure faith, conscious of protection, their religious merit will benefit the country for ages. They will be nourished as the priests are, and so the faithful will be encouraged to honour their virtue." [S. 109]
On this he founded the saṅghārāma to celebrate the victory.
At first, after the defeat of Mādhava, six Brāhmaṇs (pure-lived men), fleeing to the frontiers, told the heretics of the reverse they had suffered, and they selected men of eminent talent with a view hereafter to wipe out their disgrace.
The king having a sincere respect for Guṇamati, went in person, and addressed the following invitation to him : "Now the heretics, not measuring their strength aright, have plotted together, and dare to sound the drum of discussion. Pray, sir, condescend to crush these heretics."
Guṇamati replied, "Let those who wish to discuss come together !"
Then the learned men among the heretics were rejoiced, and said, "We shall be sure of the victory today!" The heretics then laid down their principles with energy for the purpose of opening the discussion.
Guṇamati Bodhisattva replied, "Now those heretics who fled from the difficulty they were in of obeying the king's command, these are mean men. What have I to do to discuss with and answer such persons ?" Then he added, "There is a young servant here by the pulpit who has been accustomed to listen to these discussions. He is well acquainted with abstract questions from attending by my side and listening to the high language of the disputants."
Then Guṇamati, leaving the pulpit, said to the servant, "Take my place, and carry on the discussion." Then all the assembly was moved with astonishment at this extraordinary proceeding. But the servant, sitting by the pulpit, immediately proceeded to examine the difficulties proposed. His arguments were clear like the water that wells from the fountain, and his points were true as the sound of the echo. After three replies the heretics were defeated, and once more they were obliged [S. 110] to hide their disgrace and clip their wings. From this time forth the saṅghārāma enjowed the endowment of the town and dwellings.
South-west of the convent of Guṇamati about 20 li [里] we come to a solitary hill on which is a convent called (the saṅghārāma of) Śīlabhadra (Shi-lo-po-t'o-lo).53 This is the convent which the master of śāstras after his victory caused to be built out of the funds of a village which were given up. It stands by the side of a single sharp crag like a stūpa. It contains some sacred relics of Buddha. This master of śāstras belonged to the family of the king of Samataṭa (San-mo-ta-ch'a), and was of the Brāhmaṇ caste. He loved learning and had gained a wide reputation. Travelling through the Indies to examine into and seek after religious truth, he came to this kingdom, and in the saṅghārāma of Nālanda (Na-lan-t'o) he encountered Dharmapāla Bodhisattva (Hu-fa-pu-sa). Hearing him explain the law, his understanding was opened, and he requested to become a disciple.54 He inquired into the most subtle questions,55 and investigated the way of deliverance to its conclusion ; and thus having reached the highest point of intelligence, he established [S. 111] his fame over men of his time, even to distant countries.
53 In Chinese, Kiai hien, "the sage of moral conduct."
54 To assume the soiled or coloured robes of a mendicant.
55 He inquired as to "the extreme point of the end of all" This idea of "a terminal fixed point of all things" (yih-tsai-sse kau-keng kin-ku) corresponds to the Sanskrit dhruva, and may be rendered "final truth." It is the name of a Samādhi ; it is also used as a definition of Nirvāṇa ; it is the formal definition of the title of a well-known Buddhist sūtra, the Śuraṅgama. In this connection it denotes the investigation of the highest (mystical) truth. This sūtra was written at Nālanda; it was probably the work of Dharmapāla (it must not be confused with another work of the same name translated by Kumārajīva, and recited by Fa-hian at the Vulture Peak near Rājagṛiha); it was brought to China and translated A.D. 705. In the commentary (k. viii. fol. 30 b) it is said, "This sūtra was brought from India and belongs to the Mūrdhābhishikta school (Kun teng pu). According to Colebrooke (Essays, p. 272), the Mārdhābhishiktas were a mixed class sprung from a Brāhmaṇa and a Kshatriya girl. The school named, therefore, was probably founded on a mixture of Brāhmaṇ and Buddhist doctrine. Now Nālanda was especially a place of study both for the Brahmanical and Buddhist books (Edkins, Chinese Buddhism, p. 289). This school, therefore, probably originated there.
There was a heretic of South India who delighted in examining profound questions and searching out hidden matters, in penetrating obscure and abstruse points of doctrine. Hearing of Dharmapāla's fame, the pride of self rose up within him, and, moved by profound envy, he passed over mountains and rivers in order to sound the drum56 and seek discussion. He said, "I am a man of Southern India. It is reported that in the king's country there is a great master of śāstras;57 I am but ignorant, yet I would wish to discuss with him."
56 To sound the drum is an expression for a challenge to discuss the law.
57 Ta lun sse, explained by Julien (note i, p. 453) to be equivalent to Mahāvādī
"It is true, as you affirm," the king said ; and forthwith he sent a messenger to ask Dharmapāla thus : "There is a heretic of Southern India who has come from a long distance here, and desires to discuss with you. Will you condescend to come to the hall of assembly and discuss with him ?"
Dharmapāla having heard the tidings, gathered up his garments and went, whilst Śīlabhadra and the inferior disciples surrounded him as he advanced. Then Śīlabhadra (the chief disciple) addressed him thus : "Whither goest thou so quickly ?"
Dharmapāla answered, "Since the sun of wisdom went down,58 and only the lamp of the inherited doctrine burns quietly, the heretics like clouds of ants and bees have risen ; therefore I am now going to crush that one in discussion."
58 That is, since the death of Buddha.
Śīlabhadra said, "As I have myself attended at various discussions, let me destroy this heretic." Dharmapāla, knowing his history, allowed him to have his way.
At this time Śīlabhadra was just thirty years old. The assembly, despising his youth, feared that it would be fficult for him alone to undertake the discussion. Dharmapāla knowing that the mind of his followers was [S. 112] disturbed, hastened to relieve them and said, "In honouring the conspicuous talent of a person we do not say, 'He has cut his teeth' (count his years according to his teeth). As I see the case before us now, I feel sure that he will defeat the heretic ; he is strong enough."
On the day of discussion (assembly for discussion) the people came together from far and near ; both old and young in numbers assembled. Then the heretical teacher on his part laid open his case with great emphasis, and penetrated to the utmost the abstruse points (of his argument). Śīlabhadra followed his arguments (principles), and refuted them by profound and subtle allegations. The heretic, his words being exhausted, was covered with shame and retired.
The king, in order to reward the virtue (of Śīlabhadra), gave him the revenues of this town as a bequest. The master of śāstras, declining the offer, said, "A master who wears the garments of religion (dyed garments) knows how to be contented with little and to keep himself pure. What would he do with a town ?"
The king in reply said, "The King of the Law has passed into the obscure (abode), and the vessel of wisdom has been engulfed in the stream. If there are no distinctions now made (between the learned and ignorant), then no encouragement is given to the scholar to press forward in the attainment of religion. Pray, of your pity, accept my offering."
The doctor, not persisting in his refusal, accepted the town and built this saṅghārāma, vast and magnificent, and endowed it with the revenues of the town,59 as a means of providing it with the offerings necessary for religious service.
59 Of the houses of the town. I understand it to mean the revenues of the saṅghārāma were derived from the rentals of the place; not that the people or the inhabitants were bound to the service of the priests.
Going to the south-west of the saṅghārāma of Śīlabhadra about 40 or 50 li [里], and crossing the Nairañjanā60 [S. 113] river we come to the town of Gayā.61 This town is naturally strong (situated amid crags or precipices). It has but few inhabitants; there are about 1000 families of Brāhmaṇs only; they are the offspring (successors) of a Ṛishi. The king does not regard them as vassals and the people everywhere highly respect them.
60 This river is now called Phalgu; the name Lilājan or Nilāñjana is confined to the western branch, which joins the Mohāni five miles above Gayā (Cunningham, Anc. Geog., P. 457).
61 Now called Brahma-Gayā to distinguish it from Bauddha-Gayā, the place where Buddha reached enlightenment. The distance from Patna to Gayā is 60 miles by the highroad, about 70 by the route of Hiuen Tsiang. We do not know the direction of the "old convent," 200 li from Patna, and therefore cannot test the correctness of Hiuen Tsiang's figures.
To the north of the town 30 li [里] or so there is a pure fountain of water. The tradition handed down in India is that it is called "holy water ;" all who bathe or drink thereof are cleansed from whatever defilement of sin they have.
To the south-west of the town 5 or 6 li [里] we come to Mount Gayā (Kia-ye), with its sombre valley, streams, and steep and dangerous crags. In India the name commonly given to this is the divine (spiritual) mountain. From old days it has been the custom for the ruling sovereign when he comes to the throne, with a view to conciliate his subjects at a distance and to cause his renown to exceed revious generations, to ascend (this mountain) and declare his succession with accompanying ceremonies (religious ceremonies). On the top of the mountain is a stūpa about 100 feet high, which was built by Aśoka-rāja. Divine prodigies are exhibited by it, and a sacred effulgency often shines from it. In old days Tathāgata here delivered the P'ao-yun62 and other sūtras.
62 Restored to Ratnamegha Sūtra by Julien.
63 For an account of the three Kāśyapas and their conversion see Fo-sho-king-tsan-king, varga 16, vv. 1304 ss. For the scene of the "fire grot" see Tree and Serpent Worship, pl. xxiv. fig. 1.
To the south-east of Mount Gayā is a stūpa. This is the spot where Kāśyapa (Kia-she-po) was born. To the south of this stūpa are two others. These are the spots where Gayākāśyapa (Kia-ye-kia-she-po) and Nadīkāśyapa (Nai-ti-kia-she-po) sacrificed as fire-worshippers.68 [S. 114] To the east of the place where Gayākāśyapa sacrificed to fire, crossing a great river, we come to a mountain called Prāgbodhi (Po-lo-ki-po-ti).64 Tathāgata, after diligently seeking for six years and not yet obtaining supreme wisdom, after this gave up his penance and accepted the rice-milk (of Sujātā). As he went to the north-east he saw this mountain that it was secluded and dark, whereupon he desired to seek enlightenment thereon. Ascending the north-east slope and coming to the top, the earth shook and the mountain quaked, whilst the mountain Deva in terror spake thus to Bodhisattva : "This mountain is not the fortunate spot for attaining supreme wisdom. If here you stop and engage in the ' Samadhi of diamond,' 65 the earth will quake and gape and the mountain be overthrown upon you."
64 In Chinese Tsin-ching-kio-shan, i.e., "the mountain leading to (before) perfect intelligence." When Tathāgata was about to attain to enlightenment he first ascended this mountain ; hence the name.
65 Vajra samādhi, because it penetrates all conditions of being (fa).
Then Bodhisattva descended, and half-way down the south-west slope he halted. There, backed by the crag and facing a torrent, is a great stone chamber. Here he sat down cross-legged. Again the earth quaked and the mountain shook. Then a Deva of the pure abode (Śuddhavāsas) cried out in space, "This is not the place for a Tathāgata to perfect supreme wisdom. From this southwest 14 or 15 li [里], not far from the place of penance, there is a Pippala (Pi-po-lo) tree under which is 'a diamond throne.'66 All the past Buddhas seated on this throne have obtained true enlightenment, and so will those yet to come. Pray, then, proceed to that spot."67
66 Vajrāsana, an imperishable throne. It was supposed to be the centre of the earth, and the spot where all the Buddhas arrived at complete wisdom.
67 The whole of this passage is spoken by the Deva. Julien translates it differently.
Then Bodhisattva, rising up, the dragon dwelling in the cave said, "This cave is pure and excellent. Here you [S. 115] may accomplish the holy (aim). Would that of your exceeding love you would not leave me."
Then Bodhisattva having discovered that this was not the place for accomplishing his aim, to appease the dragon, he left him his shadow and departed. The Devas going before, led the way, and accompanied him to the Bodhi tree. When Aśoka-rāja came into power, he signalised each spot up and down this mountain which Bodhisattva had passed, by erecting distinguishing posts and stūpas. These, though of different sizes, yet are alike in spiritual manifestations. Sometimes flowers fall on them from heaven ; sometimes a bright light illumines the dark valleys. Every year, on the day of breaking up the season of Wass (Varshās), religious laymen from different countries ascend this mountain for the purpose of making religious offerings to the faithful. They stop one night and return.
Going south-west from Mount Prāgbodhi about 14 or 15 li [里], we come to the Bodhi tree. It is surrounded by a brick wall (a wall of piled bricks) of considerable height, steep and strong. It is long from east to west, and short from north to south. It is about 500 paces round. Rare trees with their renowned flowers connect their shade and cast their shadows ; the delicate sha68 herb and different shrubs carpet the soil. The principal gate opens to the east, opposite the Nairañjanā river. The southern gate adjoins a great flowery bank. The western side is blocked up and difficult of access (steep and strong). The northern gate opens into the great saṅghārāma. Within the surrounding wall the sacred traces touch one another in all directions. Here there are stūpas, in another place vihāras. The kings, princes, and great personages throughout all Jambudvīpa, who have accepted the bequeathed teaching as handed down to them, have erected these monuments as memorials.
68 The Sha t'so is the Cyperus iria of Linnaeus (Doolittle's Handbook, ii. 432).
In the middle of the enclosure surrounding the Bodhi [S. 116] tree is the diamond throne (Vajrāsana). In former days, when the Bhadra-kalpa was arriving at the period of perfection (vivarṭṭa), when the great earth arose, this (throne) also appeared. It is in the middle of the great chiliocosm; it goes down to the limits of the golden wheel (the gold circle), and upwards it is flush with the ground. It is composed of diamond. In circuit it is 100 paces or so. On this the thousand Buddhas of the Bhadra-kalpa have sat and entered the diamond Samādhi ; hence the name of the diamond throne. It is the place where the Budddas attain the holy path (the sacred way of Buddhahood). It is also called the Bodhimaṇḍa. When the great earth is shaken, this place alone is unmoved. Therefore when Tathāgata was about to reach the condition of enlightenment, and he went successively to the four angles of this enclosure, the earth shook and quaked; but afterwards coming to this spot, all was still and at rest. From the time of entering on the concluding portion of the kalpa, when the true law dies out and disappears, the earth and dust begin to cover over this spot, and it will be no longer visible.
After the Nirvāṇa of Buddha, the rulers of the different countries having learned by tradition the measurement of the diamond throne, decided the limits from north to south by two figures of Kwan-tsz'-tsai (Avalokiteśvara) Bodhisattva, there seated and looking eastward.
The old people say that "as soon as the figures of this Bodhisattva sink in the ground and disappear, the law of Buddha will come to an end." The figure at the south angle is now buried up to its breast. The Bodhi tree above the diamond throne is the same as the Pippala tree. In old days, when Buddha was alive, it was several hundred feet high. Although it has often been injured by cutting, it still is 40 or 50 feet in height. Buddha sitting under this tree reached perfect wisdom, and therefore it is called the (Saṃyak sambodhi) tree of knowledge (Pu-ti -- Bodhi). The bark is of a yellowish-white colour, the leaves and twigs [S. 117] of a dark green. The leaves wither not either in winter or summer, but they remain shining and glistening all the year round without change. But at every successive Nirvāna-day (of the Buddhas) the leaves wither and fall, and then in a moment revive as before. On this day (of the Nirvāṇa ?) the princes of different countries and the religious multitude from different quarters assemble by thousands and ten thousands unbidden, and bathe (the roots) with scented water and perfumed milk ; whilst they raise the sounds of music and scatter flowers and perfumes, and whilst the light of day is continued by the burning torches, they offer their religious gifts.
After the Nirvāṇa of Tathāgata, when ASoka-rāja began to reign, he was an unbeliever (a believer in heresy), and he desired to destroy the bequeathed traces of Buddha ; so he raised an army, and himself taking the lead, he came here for the purpose of destroying (the tree). He cut through the roots ; the trunk, branches, and leaves were all divided into small bits and heaped up in a pile a few tens of paces to the west of the place. Then he ordered a Brāhmaṇ who sacrificed to fire to burn them in the discharge of his religious worship. Scarcely had the smoke cleared away, when lo ! a double tree burst forth from the flaming fire, and because the leaves and branches were shining like feathers, it was called the "ashes bodhi tree." Aśoka-rāja, seeing the miracle, repented of his crime. He bathed the roots (of the old tree) with perfumed milk to fertilise them, when lo ! on the morning of the next day, the tree sprang up as before. The king, seeing the miraculous portent, was overpowered with deep emotion, and himself offered religious gifts, and was so overjoyed that he forgot to return (to the palace). The queen, who was an adherent of the heretics, sent secretly a messenger, who, after the first division of night, once more put it down. Aśoka-rāja in the morning coming again to worship at the tree, seeing only the mutilated trunk, was filled with exceeding grief. With the utmost sincerity he prayed as [S. 118] he worshipped ; he bathed the roots with perfumed milk, and in less than a day again the tree was restored. The king, moved by deep reverence at the prodigy, surrounded the tree with a stone (brick) wall above 10 feet, which still remains visible. In late times Śaśāṅka-rāja (She-shang-kia), being a believer in heresy, slandered the religion of Buddha, and through envy destroyed the convents and cut down the Bodhi tree, digging it up to the very springs of the earth ; but yet he did not get to the bottom of the roots. Then he burnt it with fire and sprinkled it with the juice of the sugar-cane, desiring to destroy it entirely, and not leave a trace of it behind.
Some months afterwards, the king of Magadha, called Pūrṇavarmā (Pu-la-na-fa-mo), the last of the race of Aśoka-rāja, hearing of it, sighed and said, "The sun of wisdom having set, nothing is left but the tree of Buddha, and this they now have destroyed, what source of spiritual life is there now?" He then cast his body on the ground overcome with pity ; then with the milk of a thousand cows he again bathed the roots of the tree, and in a night it once more revived and grew to the height of some 10 feet. Fearing lest it should be again cut down, he surrounded it with a wall of stone 24 feet high. So the tree is now encircled with a wall about 20 feet high.
To the east of the Bodhi tree there is a vihāra about 160 or 170 feet high. Its lower foundation-wall is 20 or more paces in its face. The building (pile) is of blue tiles (bricks) covered with chunam (burnt stone, lime) ; all the niches in the different storeys hold golden figures.69 The four sides of the building are covered with wonderful ornamental work ; in one place figures of stringed pearls (garlands), in another figures of heavenly Ṛishis. The whole is surrounded by a gilded copper Āmalaka fruit.70 The eastern face adjoins a storeyed pavilion, the projecting eaves of which rise one over the other to the height [S. 119] of three distinct chambers ; its projecting eaves, its pillars, beams, doors, and windows are decorated with gold and silver ornamental work, with pearls and gems let in to fill up interstices. Its sombre chambers and mysterious halls have doors in each of the three storeys. To the right and left of the outside gate are niches like chambers ; in the left is a figure of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva, and in the right a figure of Maitreya (T'se-shi) Bodhisattva. They are made of white silver, and are about 10 feet high. On the site of the present vihāra Aśoka-rāja at first built a small vihāra. Afterwards there was a Brāhmaṇ who reconstructed it on a larger scale. At first this Brāhmaṇ was not a believer in the law of Buddha, and sacrificed to Maheśvara. Having heard that this heavenly spirit (god) dwelt in the Snowy Mountains, he forthwith went there with his younger brother to seek by prayer (his wishes). The Deva said, "Those who pray should aim to acquire some extensive religious merit. If you who pray have not this ground (of merit), then neither can I grant what you pray for."
69 There is no mention made of "figures of Buddha."
70 Myrobolan-embilc ; it is also called "a precious pitcher" or "a precious gourd." But see note at end of this Book.
NOTE 2, p. 118. [S. 136/7]
With reference to the translation on p. 118, where the Chinese symbols 'O-mo-lo-kia-ko have been rendered the "Āmalaka fruit," as though this were the surmounting ornament of the great vihāra at [S. 137] Buddha Gayā, it is to be noticed that in the Chinese text these symbols are explained as being equivalent to "precious pitcher or vase" (pao p'ing). This phrase is frequently explained as "the sweet-dew dish or vase," or, "the immortal dish." M. Julien, in his note on the passage in question, restores the phonetic symbols, in deference to the Chinese explanation, to Āmalakarka, that is, "pure dish or vase." But the right restoration is doubtless Amara Karka, "the immortal dish or vase," for, as before stated, "sweet-dew" is always rendered by "immortal" or "immortality." This "sweet-dew dish or vessel" is represented in Chinese drawings as an oval bottle with a long narrow neck (see the illustration in the Liturgy of Avalokiteśvara, "possessed of a thousand hands and a thousand eyes "). This explains the statement of Dr. Burgess (Ajantā Caves, xvii. iv.) : "Avalokiteśvara holds the palm of his right hand forward and has a bottle with oval body and narrow neck in his left." This is the Amara Karka. In the illustration of the pavement slab of the great temple of Gayā (i.e., the vihāra under present notice) given in the first volume of the Archaeological Survey of India, pl. vi. (following p. 8), there is the figure of a devotee praying in front of a stūpa, which is crowned with flags and a bottle or vase, doubtless the same as the Amara Karka. This illustrates the inscription found at Buddha Gayā and translated by Sir Charles Wilkins, in which the building of the temple is attributed to Amara Kosha ; one of the nine gems of the court of King Vikramāditya. General Cunningham, then, is probably correct in saying that this great temple of Buddha Gayā" was built between the time of Fa-hian and Hiuen Tsiang. The crowning member or stone of a temple spire is called Amalśilā, or "pure stone."
The Brāhmaṇ said, " What meritorious work can I set about, to enable me to obtain my desire ?"
The god said, "If you wish to plant a superior root (growth) of merit, then seek a superior field (in which to acquire if). The Bodhi tree is the place for attaining the fruit of a Buddha. You should straightway return there, and by the Bodhi tree erect a large vihāra, and excavate a large tank, and devote all kinds of religious offerings (to the service). You will then surely obtain your wishes."
The Brāhmaṇs having received the divine communication, conceived a believing heart, and they both returned to the place. The elder brother built the vihāra, the younger excavated the tank, and then they prepared large religious offerings, and sought with diligence their heart's desire (vow). The result followed at once. The Brāhmaṇ became the great minister of the king. He devoted all his emoluments to the work of charity. Having finished [S. 120] the vihāra, he invited the most skilful artists to make a figure (likeness) of Tathāgata when he first reached the condition of Buddha. Years and months passed without result ; no one answered the appeal. At length there was a Brāhmaṇ who came and addressed the congregation thus: "I will thoroughly execute (paint and mark) the excellent figure (or distinguishing points) of Tathāgata."
They replied, "For the purpose of doing this, what do you require ?"
"Place in the vihāra a pile of scented earth and a lighted lamp ; then when I have gone in, fasten the doors. After six months you may open them again."
Then the priests did as he directed. After four months, the six not being passed, the priests being astonished at the strange circumstance, opened the door to see what had happened. In the vihāra they found a beautiful figure of Buddha in a sitting position, the right foot uppermost, the left hand resting, the right hand hanging down. He was sitting facing the east, and as dignified in appearance as when alive. The throne was 4 feet 2 inches high, and 12 feet 5 inches broad. The figure was 11 feet 5 inches high ; the two knees were 8 feet 8 inches apart, and the two shoulders 6 feet 2 inches. The signs and marks (of a Buddha) were perfectly drawn. The loving expression of his face was like life, only above his right breast the material was not yet completely rounded off. Having seen no man, they were satisfied that this was a miracle, and all of them were filled with strong emotion (piteously sighed) as they diligently sought to find out the secret (earnestly inquired in order to know). Now there was a Śramaṇa who was passing the night there. He was of an honest and truthful heart, and being affected by the circumstance (just related), he had a dream, in which he saw the fore-mentioned Brāhmaṇ, who addressed him thus : " am Maitreya Bodhisattva. Fearing that the mind of no artist could conceive the beauty of the sacred features, therefore I myself have come to paint and [S. 121] delineate the figure of Buddha. His right hand hangs down71 in token that when he was about to reach the fruit of a Buddha, and the enticing Māra came to fascinate him, then the earth-spirits came to tell him thereof. The first who came forth advanced to help Buddha to resist Māra, to whom Tathāgata said, 'Fear not ! By the power of patience he must be subdued !' Māra-rāja said, 'Who will bear witness for you ?' Tathāgata dropped his hand and pointed to the ground, saying, 'Here is my witness.' On this a second earth-spirit leapt forth to bear witness (to testify). Therefore the present figure is so drawn, in imitation of the old posture of Buddha."
71 This is the Bhūmisparśa mudrā.
The brethren having understood this sacred miracle (spiritual reflection), were all moved with a tender emotion, and they placed above the breast, where the work was as yet unfinished, a necklace of precious stones and jewels, whilst on the head they placed a diadem of encircling gems, exceedingly rich.
Śāśaṅka-rāja having cut down the Bodhi tree, wished to destroy this image ; but having seen its loving features, his mind had no rest or determination, and he returned with his retinue homewards. On his way he said to one of his officers, "We must remove that statue of Buddha and place there a figure of Maheśvara."
The officer having received the order, was moved with fear, and, sighing, said, "If I destroy the figure of Buddha, then during successive kalpas I shall reap misfortune ; if I disobey the king, he will put me to a cruel death and destroy my family ; in either case, whether I obey or disobey, such will be the consequences ; what, then, shall I do?"
On this he called to his presence a man with a believing heart (i.e., a believer in Buddha) to help him, and sent him to build up across the chamber and before the figure of Buddha a wall of brick. The man, from a feeling of shame at the darkness, placed a burning lamp (with the [S. 122] concealed figure) ; then on the interposing wall he drew a figure of (or, he made a figure of)72 Maheśvara-deva.
78 Julien thinks a translation should be adopted that would apply equally to a statue or a picture.
The work being finished, he reported the matter. The king hearing it, was seized with terror ; his body produced sores and his flesh rotted off, and after a short while he died. Then the officer quickly ordered the intervening wall to be pulled down again, when, although several days had elapsed, the lamp was still found to be burning (unextinguished).
The figure still exists in its perfect state as it was made by the sacred art of the god. It stands in a dark chamber ; lamps and torches are kept burning therein ; but those who wish to see the sacred features cannot do so by coming into the chamber; they should in the morning reflect the sunlight by means of a great mirror on the interior of the room ; the sacred marks may then be seen. Those who behold them find their religious emotions much increased. Tathāgata obtained complete enlightenment (Saṃyak saṃbodhi) on the eighth day of the latter half of the Indian month Vaiśākha (Fei-she-kie), which is with us the eighth day of the third month. But the Sthavira school (Shang-tso-pu) say on the fifteenth day of the second half of Vaiśākha, which corresponds with us to the fifteenth day of the third month. Tathāgata was then thirty years old, or, according to others, thirty-five years.
To the north of the Bodhi tree is a spot where Buddha walked up and down. When Tathāgata had obtained enlightenment, he did not rise from the throne, but remained perfectly quiet for seven days, lost in contemplation. Then rising, he walked up and down during seven days to the north of the tree ; he walked there east and west for a distance of ten paces or so. Miraculous flowers sprang up under his foot-traces to the number of eighteen. Afterwards this space was covered in by a brick wall about three feet high. According to the old belief, these [S. 123] holy traces thus covered in, indicate the length or shortness of a man's life. First of all, having offered up a sincere prayer, then count the measurement (or, pace the distance and measure) ; according as the person's life is to be long or short, so will the measurement be greater or less.
On the left side of the road, to the north of the place where Buddha walked, is a large stone, on the top of which, as it stands in a great vihāra, is a figure of Buddha with his eyes raised and looking up Here in former times Buddha sat for seven days contemplating the Bodhi tree ; he did not remove his gaze from it during this period, desiring thereby to indicate his grateful feelings towards the tree by so looking at it with fixed eyes.
Not far to the west of the Bodhi tree is a large vihāra in which is a figure of Buddha made of teou-shih (brass), ornamented with rare jewels ; he stands with his face to the east. Before it is a blue stone with wonderful marks upon it and strangely figured. This is (the place where) Buddha sat on a seven-gemmed throne made by Śakra Deva-rāja when Brahma-rāja built a hall for him of seven precious substances, after he had arrived at complete enlightenment. Whilst he thus sat for seven days in reflection, the mysterious glory which shone from his person lit up the Bodhi tree. From the time of the holy one till the present is so long that the gems have changed into stone.
Not far to the south of the Bodhi tree is a stūpa about 100 feet high, which was built by Aśoka-rāja. Bodhisattva having bathed in the Nairañjanā river, proceeded towards the Bodhi tree. Then he thought, "What shall I do for a seat ? I will seek for some pure rushes when the day breaks." Then Śakra-rāja (Shi) transformed himself into a grass-cutter, who, with his burden on his back, went along the road. Bodhisattva addressing him said, "Can you give me the bundle of grass you are carrying on your back ?" [S. 124]
The assumed grass-cutter, hearing the request, offered the grass with respect. Bodhisattva having received it, went onwards to the tree.
Not far to the north of this spot is a stūpa. Bodhisattva, when about to obtain enlightenment (the fruit of Buddha), saw a flock of blue birds rising up (rohin ?)73 according to the lucky way. Of all the good omens recognised in India this is the most so. Therefore the Devas of the pure abodes (Śuddhavāsas accommodated their proceedings to the customary modes of the world, and caused the birds thus to encircle him as spiritually (miraculously) indicating his holiness.
73 The expression in the text seems to be phonetic. Julien translates "luh" literally by "deer." But the reference is to the blue birds rising up and circling round Bodhisattva in a fortunate way, vid. Tree and Serpent Worship, pl. lviii. fig. 2, first section. The account of these signs is to be found in Wong Pūh, and in other legendary lives of Buddha.
To the east of the Bodhi tree, on the left and right of the great road, there are two stūpas (one on each side). This is the place where Māra-rāja tempted Bodhisattva. Bodhisattva, when on the point of enlightenment, was tempted by Māra to become a Chakravarttīn (Lun-wang) monarch.74 On his refusing, he went away heavy and sorrowful. On this his daughters, asking him, went to try to entice the Bodhisattva, but by his spiritual power he changed their youthful appearance into that of decrepit old women. Then leaning together on their sticks they went away.75
74 To accept the letter inviting him to be a Chakravarttīn, or the lot cast by the soothsayers with respect to his being a Chakravarttīn (Chuen-lun-wang).
75 The temptation scene is represented in all the sculptures. See, e.g., Cave Temples, by Dr. Burgess, pl. xx. For an account of the different events named in the text and a description of the great temple of Gayā built by a king of Ceylon, see Buddha Gayā, by Dr. Raj. Mitra.
To the north-west of the Bodhi tree in a vihāra is the image of Kāśyapa Buddha. It is noted for its miraculous and sacred qualities. From time to time it emits a glorious light. The old records say, that if a man actuated by sincere faith walks round it seven times, he obtains the power of knowing the place and condition of his (former?) births. [S. 125]
To the north-west of the vihāra of Kāśyapa Buddha there are two brick chambers, each containing a figure of an earth-spirit. Formerly, when Buddha was on the point of obtaining enlightenment, Māra came to him, and each one (or one) became witness for Buddha. Men afterwards, on account of his merit, painted or carved this figure of him with all its points of excellence.
To the north-west of the wall of the Bodhi tree is a stūpa called Yuh-kin-hiang (the saffron scent, Kuṅkuma) ; it is about 40 feet high ; it was built by a merchant chief (sreshṭhī) of the country of Tsao-kiu-ch'u (Tsaukuṭa). In old days there was a merchant-prince of this country who worshipped the heavenly spirits and sacrificed to them with a view to seek religious merit. He despised the religion of Buddha, and did not believe in the doctrine of "deeds and fruits." After a while, he took with him some merchants to engage in commercial transactions (to take goods for having or not having, i.e., for exchange). Embarking in a ship on the southern sea, a tempest arising, they lost their way, whilst the tumultuous waves encircled them. Then after three years, their provisions being gone and their mouths parched with thirst, when there was not enough to last the voyagers from morning till evening, they employed all their energies with one mind in calling on the gods to whom they sacrificed. After all their efforts no result followed (their secret desire not accomplished), when unexpectedly they saw a great mountain with steep crags and precipices, and a double sun gleaming from far. Then the merchants, congratulating themselves, said, "We are fortunate indeed in encountering this great mountain ; we shall here get some rest and refreshment." The merchant - master said, "It is no mountain; it is the Makara fish; the high crags and scarped precipices are but its fins and mane ; the double suns are its eyes as they shine." Scarce had he finished when the sails of the ship began to draw ; on which the merchant-master said to his companions, "I have heard [S. 126] say that Kwan-tsz'-tsai Bodhisattva is able to come to the help of those in difficulties and give them rest ; we ought then with all faith to call upon that name." So with one accord and voice they paid their adorations76 and called on the name. The high mountains disappeared, the two suns were swallowed up, and suddenly they saw a Śramaṇa with dignified mien and calm demeanour holding his staff, walking through the sky, and coming towards them to rescue them from shipwreck, and in consequence they were at their own country immediately.77 Then because their faith was confirmed, and with a view not to lose the merit of their condition, they built a stūpa and prepared their religious offerings, and they covered the stūpa from top to bottom with saffron paste. After thus, conceiving a heart of faith, those who were like-minded resolved to pay their adoration to the sacred traces ; beholding the Bodhi tree, they had no leisure for words about returning ; but now, a month having elapsed, as they were walking together, they said in conversation, "Mountains and rivers separate us from our native country, and now as to the stūpa which we built formerly, whilst we have been here, who has watered and swept it ?" On finishing these words and coming to the spot (where this stūpa stands), they turned round in token of respect; when suddenly they saw a stūpa rise before them, and on advancing to look at it, they saw it was exactly like the one they had built in their own country. Therefore now in India they call it the Kuṅkuma stūpa.
76 Kwai-ming, pay their adorations ; the same as kwai-i. Julien translates it "placed their lot in his hands."
77 Can this be the scene represented in the Ajanta frescoes ? See Burgess, Cave Temples, pl. xvi.
At the south-east angle of the wall of the Bodhi tree is a stūpa by the side of a Nyagrodha (ni-ken-liu) tree. Beside it there is a vihāra in which is a sitting figure of Buddha. This is the spot where the great Brahmadeva exhorted Buddha, when he had first acquired enlightenment, to turn the wheel of the excellent law.78 [S. 127]
78 Buddha was in doubt whether any were fit to hear him preach. On this, Brahmā (Fan), the lord of the "Saha world" (Mahābrahmā Sahāṃpati), came and exhorted him to "turn the wheel," for, he said, "as on the surface of a pond there are white and blue lotus flowers, some only in bud, some opening, others fully opened ; thus it is with men ; some are not yet fit to be taught, others are being made fit, whilst some are ready to receive the saving doctrine." See the account in the Chung-hu-mo-ho-ti Sūtra. See also Fo-sho, varga 14, v. 1183.
Within the walls of the Bodhi tree at each of the four angles is a great stūpa. Formerly, when Tathāgata received the grass of good omen (Santi), he walked on the four sides of the Bodhi tree from point to point; then the great earth trembled. When he came to the diamond throne, then all was quiet and peaceable again. Within the walls of the tree the sacred traces are so thick together that it would be difficult to recite each one particularly.
At the south-west of the Bodhi tree, outside the walls, there is a stūpa ; this is where the old house of the two shepherd-girls stood who offered the rice-milk to Buddha. By the side of it is another stūpa where the girls boiled the rice; by the side of this stūpa Tathāgata received the rice. Outside the south gate of the Bodhi tree is a great tank about 700 paces round, the water of which is clear and pure as a mirror. Nāgas and fishes dwell there. This was the pond which was dug by the Brāhmaṇs, who were uterine brothers, at the command of Maheśvara (Ta-thseu-thsai).
Still to the south there is a tank; formerly, when Tathāgata had just acquired perfect enlightenment, he wished to bathe; then Śakra (Shi), king of Devas, for Buddha's sake, caused a pond to appear as a phantom.
On the west is a great stone where Buddha washed his robes, and then wished to dry them ; on this, Śakra, king of Devas, brought this rock from the great Snowy Mountains. By the side of this is a stūpa ; this is where Tathāgata put on (?) the old garments offered him. Still to the south in a wood is a stūpa; this is where the poor old woman gave the old garments which Tathāgata accepted. [S. 128]
To the east of the pond which Śakra caused to appear, in the midst of a wood, is the lake of the Nāga king Muchilinda (Mu-chi-lin-t'o). The water of this lake is of a dark blue colour, its taste is sweet and pleasant ; on the west bank is a small vihāra in which is a figure of Buddha. Formerly, when Tathāgata first acquired complete enlightenment, he sat on this spot in perfect composure, and for seven days dwelt in ecstatic contemplation. Then this Muchilinda Nāga-rāja kept guard over Tathāgata ; with his folds seven times round the body of Buddha, he caused many heads to appear, which overshadowed him as a parasol ; therefore to the east of this lake is the dwelling of the Nāga.
To the east of the tank of Muchilinda in a vihāra standing in a wood is a figure of Buddha, which represents him as thin and withered away.
At the side of this is the place where Buddha walked up and down, about 70 paces or so long, and on each side of it is a Pippala tree.
Both in old times and now, among the better classes and the poor, those who suffer from disease are accustomed to anoint the figure with scented earth, on which they get cured in many cases. This is the place where Bodhisattva endured his penance. Here it was Tathāgata subdued the heretics and received the request of Māra, and then entered on his six years' fast, eating a grain of millet and of wheat each day; his body then became thin and withered and his face marred. The place where he walked up and down is where he took the branch of the tree (as he left the river) after his fast.
By the side of the Pippala tree which denoted the place of Buddha's fast is a stūpa; this is where Ajñāta-Kauṇḍinya and the rest, to the number of five, resided. When first the prince left his home, he wandered through the mountains and plains ; he rested in forests and by wells of water. Then Suddhodana-rāja ordered five men to [S. 129] follow him and wait on his person. The prince having entered on his penance, then Ajñāta Kauṇḍinya and the rest gave themselves also to a diligent practice of the same.
To the south-west of this spot there is a stūpa. This is where Bodhisattva entered the Nairañjanā river to bathe. By the side of the river, not far off, is the place where Bodhisattva received the rice-milk.
By the side of this is a stūpa where the merchant-prince (householder) offered him the wheat and honey. Buddha was seated with his legs crossed beneath a tree, lost in contemplation, experiencing in silence the joys of emancipation. After seven days he aroused himself from his ecstasy. Then two merchant-princes travelling by the side of the wood were addressed by the Deva of the place thus : "The prince-royal of the Śākya family dwells in this wood, having just reached the fruit of a Buddha. His mind fixed in contemplation, he has for forty-nine days eaten nothing. By offering him whatsoever you have (as food} you will reap great and excellent profit."
Then the two merchants offered some wheat-flour and honey from their travelling store. The World-honoured accepted and received it.
By the side of the merchant-offering place is a stūpa. This is the spot where the four Deva-rājas presented (Buddha) with a pātra. The merchant-princes having made their offering of wheat-flour and honey, the Lord thought with himself in what vessel he should receive it. Then the four Deva-rājas coming from the four quarters, each brought a golden dish and offered it. The Lord sat silently and accepted not the offerings, on the ground that such a costly dish became not the character of a hermit. The four kings casting away the golden dishes, offered silver ones ; afterwards they offered vessels of crystal (po-ch'i), lapis-lazuli (liu-li), cornelian (ma-nao), amber (ku-ch'i), ruby (chin chu), and so on. The Lord of the World would accept neither of them. The four kings then returned to [S. 130] their palaces and brought as an offering stone pātras, of a deep blue colour and translucent. Again presenting these, the Lord, to avoid accepting one and rejecting the others, forthwith joined them all in one and accepted them thus. Putting them one within the other, he made one vessel of the four. Therefore may be seen the four borders on the outside of the rim (of the dish).
Not far from this spot is a stūpa. This is the place where Tathāgata preached the law for the sake of his mother. When Tathāgata had acquired complete enlightenment, he was termed "the teacher of gods and of men." His mother, Māyā, then came down from heaven to this place. The Lord of the World preached to her according to the occasion, for her profit and pleasure.
Beside this spot is a dry pool, on the border of which is a stūpa. This is where in former days Tathāgata displayed various spiritual changes to convert those who were capable of it.
By the side of this spot is a stūpa. Here Tathāgata converted Uravilvā-Kāśyapa (Yeu-leu-pin-lo-kia-shepo) with his two brothers and a thousand of their followers. Tathāgata, for the purpose of following out his office as "illustrious guide," according to his opportunity (or in a suitable way), caused him (i.e., Kāśyapa) to submit to his teaching. On this occasion, when 500 followers of Uravilvā-Kāśyapa had requested to receive the instruction of Buddha, then Kāśyapa said, "I too with you will give up the way of error." On this, going together, they came to the place where Buddha was. Tathāgata, addressing them, said, "Lay aside your leather garments and give up your fire-sacrificing vessels." Then the disciples, in obedience to the command, cast into the Nairañjanā river their articles of worship (service or use). When Nadī-Kāśyapa (Nai-ti-kia-she-po) saw these vessels following the current of the river, he came with his followers to visit his brother. Having seen his conduct and changed behaviour, he also [S. 131] took the yellow robes. Gayā-Kāśyapa also, with two hundred followers, hearing of his brother's change of religion, came to the place where Buddha was, and prayed to be allowed to practise a life of purity.
To the north-west of the spot where the Kāśyapa brothers were converted is a stūpa. This is the place where Tathāgata overcame the fiery Nāga to which Kāśyapa sacrificed. Tathāgata, when about to convert these men, first subdued the object of their worship, and rested in the house of the fiery Nāga of the Brahmachārins. After the middle of the night the Nāga vomited forth fire and smoke. Buddha having entered Samādhi, likewise raised the brilliancy of fire, and the house-cell seemed to be filled with fiery flames. The Brahmachārins, fearing that the fire was destroying Buddha, all ran together to the spot with piteous cries, commiserating his fate. On this Uravilvā-Kāśyapa addressed his followers and said, "As I now gather (see), this is not a fire, but the Śramaṇa subduing the fiery Nāga." Tathāgata having got the fiery dragon firmly fixed in his alms-bowl, on the morrow came forth holding it in his hand, and showed it to the disciples of the unbelievers. By the side of this monument is a stūpa, where 500 Pratyeka Buddhas at the same time entered Nirvāṇa,
To the south of the tank of Muchilinda Nāga is a stūpa. This indicates the spot where Kāśyapa went to save Buddha during an inundation. The Kāśyapa brothers still opposing the divine method,79 all who lived far off or near reverenced their virtue, and submitted themselves to their teaching. The Lord of the World, in his character as guide of those in error, being very intent on their conversion, raised and spread abroad the thick clouds and caused the torrents to fall. The fierce waves surrounded the place where Buddha dwelt ; but he alone was free from the flood. At this time Kāśyapa, seeing the clouds and [S. 132] rain, calling his disciples, said, "The place where the Shaman dwells must be engulfed in the tide !"
79 I.e., the methods Buddha had used for their conversion.
Embarking in a boat to go to his deliverance, he saw the Lord of the World walking on the water as on land ; and as he advanced down the stream, the waters divided and left the ground visible. Kāśyapa having seen (the miracle), his heart was subdued, and he returned.80
80 See Tree and Serpent Worship, pi. xxxi. fig. 2.
Outside the eastern gate of the wall of the Bodhi tree, 2 or 3 li [里] distant, there is the house of the blind Nāga. This Nāga, by the accumulated effect of his deeds during former existences, was born blind, as a punishment, in his present birth. Tathāgata going on from Mount Prāgbodhi, desired to reach the Bodhi tree. As he passed this abode, the eyes of the Nāga were suddenly opened, and he saw Bodhisattva going on to the tree of intelligence (Bodhi). Then addressing Bodhisattva, he said, "virtuous master ! erelong you will become perfectly enlightened ! My eyes indeed have long remained in darkness; but when a Buddha appears in the world, then I have my sight restored. During the Bhadra-kalpa, when the three past Buddhas appeared in the world, then I obtained light and saw (for a while); and now when thou, O virtuous one ! didst approach this spot, my eyes suddenly opened ; therefore I know that you shall become a Buddha."
By the side of the eastern gate of the wall of the Bodhi tree is a stūpa. This is where Māra-rāja tried to frighten Bodhisattva. When first Māra-rāja knew that Bodhisattva was about to obtain perfect enlightenment, having failed to confuse him by his enticements or to terrify him by his arts, he summoned his host of spirits and arranged his demon army, and arrayed his soldiers, armed with their weapons, as if to destroy the Bodhisattva. On this the winds arose and the rains descended, the thunders rolled in space and the lightning gleamed, as it lit up the darkness ; flames of fire and clouds of smoke burst forth ; [S. 133] sand and hailstones fell like lances, and were as arrows flying from the bow. Whereupon the Bodhisattva entered the samādhi of "great love," and changed the weapons of the host to lotus flowers. Māra's army, smitten by fear, retreated fast and disappeared.
Not far from this are two stūpas built by Śakra, king of Devas, and by Brahma-rāja. Outside the northern gate of the wall of the Bodhi tree is the Mahābodhi saṅghārāma. It was built by a former king of Siṃhala (Ceylon.) This edifice has six halls, with towers of observation (temple towers) of three storeys ; it is surrounded by a wall of defence thirty or forty feet high. The utmost skill of the artist has been employed; the ornamentation is in the richest colours (red and blue). The statue of Buddha is cast of gold and silver, decorated with gems and precious stones. The stūpas are high and large in proportion, and beautifully ornamented ; they contain relics of Buddha. The bone relics are as great as the fingers of the hand, shining and smooth, of a pure white colour and translucent. The flesh relics are like the great true pearl, of a bluish-red tint. Every year on the day of the full moon of (the month when) Tathāgata displayed great spiritual changes, they take these relics out for public exhibition.81 On these occasions sometimes a bright light is diffused, sometimes it rains flowers. The priests of this convent are more than 1000 men; they study the Great Vehicle and belong to the Sthavira (Shang-tso-pu) school. They carefully observe the Dharma Vinaya, and their conduct is pure and correct.
81 In India, the thirtieth day of the twelfth month ; in China, the fifteenth day of the first month.
In old days there was a king of Ceylon, which is a country of the southern sea, who was truthful and a believer in the law of Buddha. It happened that his brother, who had become a disciple of Buddha (a houseless one), thinking on the holy traces of Buddha, went forth to wander through India. At all the convents he visited, [S. 134] he was treated with disdain as a foreigner (a frontier countryman). On this he returned to his own country. The king in person went out to a distance to meet him, but the Śramaṇa was so affected that he could not speak. The king said, "What has so afflicted you as to cause this excessive grief ?" The Śramaṇa replied, "I, relying on the dignity of your Majesty's kingdom, went forth to visit the world, and to find my way through distant regions and strange cities. For many years all my travels, during heat and cold, have been attended with outrage, and my words have been met with insults and sarcasm. Having endured these afflictions, how can I be light-hearted ?"
The king said, "If these things are so, what is to be done ?"
He replied, "In truth, I wish your Majesty in the field of merit would undertake to build convents throughout all India. You would thus signalise the holy traces, and gain for yourself a great name ; you would show your gratitude for the advantage derived from your predecessors, and hand down the merit thereof to your successors."
He replied, "This is an excellent plan ; how have I but just heard of it ?"
Then he gave in tribute to the king of India all the jewels of his country. The king having received them as tribute, from a principle of duty and affection to his distant ally, he sent messengers to say, "What can I now do in return for the decree ?"
The minister said, "The king of Siṃhala salutes the king of India (Mahā Śrī rāja). The reputation of the Mahārāja has spread far and wide, and your benefits have reached to distant regions. The Śramaṇas of this inferior country desire to obey your instructions and to accept your transforming influences. Having wandered through your superior country in visiting the sacred traces, I called at various convents and found [S. 135] great difficulty in getting entertainment, and so, fatigued and very much worn by affronts, I returned home. I have therefore formed a plan for the benefit of future travellers ; I desire to build in all the Indies a convent for the entertainment of such strangers, who may have a place of rest between their journey there and back. Thus the two countries will be bound together and travellers be refreshed."
The king said, "I permit your royal master to take (for this purpose) one of the places in which Tathāgata has left the traces of his holy teaching."
On this the messenger returned home, having taken leave of the king, and gave an account of his interview. The ministers received him with distinction and assembled the Śramaṇas and deliberated as to the foundation of a convent. The Śramaṇas said, "The (Bodhi) tree is the place where all the past Buddhas have obtained the holy fruit and where the future ones will obtain it. There is no better place than this for carrying out the project."
Then, sending all the jewels of the country, they built this convent to entertain priests of this country (Ceylon), and he caused to be engraved this proclamation on copper, "To help all without distinction is the highest teaching of all the Buddhas ; to exercise mercy as occasion offers is the illustrious doctrine of former saints. And now I, unworthy descendant in the royal line, have undertaken to found this saṅghārāma, to enclose the sacred traces, and to hand down their renown to future ages, and to spread their benefits among the people. The priests of my country will thus obtain independence, and be treated as members of the fraternity of this country. Let this privilege be handed down from generation to generation without interruption."
For this cause this convent entertains many priests of Ceylon. To the south of the Bodhi tree 10 li [里] or so, the sacred traces are so numerous that they cannot be each named. Every year when the Bhikshus break up their [S. 136] yearly rest of the rains, religious persons come here from every quarter in thousands and myriads, and during seven days and nights they scatter flowers, burn incense, and sound music as they wander through the district82 and pay their worship and present their offerings. The priests of India, according to the holy instruction of Buddha, on the first day of the first half of the month Śrāvaṇa enters on Wass. With us this is the sixteenth day of the fifth month ; they give up their retreat on the fifteenth day of the second half of the month Āśvayuja, which is with us the fifteenth day of the eighth month.
82 The district of the penance of Buddha.
In India the names of the months depend on the stars, and from ancient days till now there has been no change in this. But as the different schools have translated the accounts according to the dialects of the countries without distinguishing one from the other, mistakes have arisen, and as a consequence contradictions are apparent in the division of the seasons. Hence it is in some places they enter on Wass on the sixteenth day of the fourth month, and break up on the fifteenth day of the seventh month.
END OF BOOK VIII. [S. 138]
The Second Part of the Country Magadha.
To the east of the Bodhi tree, crossing the Nairañjanā (Ni-len-shan-na) river, in the middle of a wood, is a stūpa. To the north of this is a pool. This is the spot where a perfume elephant (Gandhahastī)1 waited on his mother. Formerly when Tathāgata was practising discipline as a Bodhisattva, he was born as the offspring of a perfume-elephant, and lived in the mountains of the north. Wandering forth, he came to the border of this pool. His mother being blind, he gathered for her the sweet lotus roots, and drew pure water for her use, and cherished her with devotion and filial care. At this time there was a man who had changed his home,2 who wandered here and there in the wood without knowing his way, and in his distress raised piteous cries. The elephant-cub heard him and pitied him ; leading him on, he showed him his way to the road. The man having got back, forthwith went to the king and said, "I know of a wood3 in which a perfume-elephant lives and roams. It is a very valuable animal. You had better go and take it."
1 See ante, vol. i. p. 5, note 25. Consult also Monier Williams, Sansc. Dict, sub voc. Gandhadvipa.
2 Tui i shuh seems to imply that he had changed his place of abode, and so was at a loss to find his way about; or it may simply mean, "In the lapse of time it happened that," &c. So Julien translates it.
3 The ruins of the stūpa and the lower portion of the shaft of the pillar raised on the spot where the young elephant was taken still exist at Bakror, on the eastern bank of the Lilājan river, about one mile to the south-east of Buddha Gayā (Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 459).
The king, assenting to his words, went with his soldiers to capture it, the man leading the way. Then pointing [S. 139] to the elephant to show it to the king, immediately both his arms fell off as if cut by a sword. The king, though he saw this miracle, yet captured the elephant-cub, and bound it with cords, and returned to his palace. The young elephant having been bound (in order to tame it), for a long time would neither eat nor drink. The stable-keeper stated the matter to the king, who, on his part, came to see for himself, and asking the elephant the reason.4 "Lo !" he answered and said, "my mother is blind, and now for days together is without food or drink, and here I am bound in a dreary dungeon. How can I take my food with relish !" The king, pitying his feelings and resolution, therefore ordered him to be set free.
4 In a fond way, as we speak to dumb creatures.
By the side of this (pool) is a stūpa, before which is built a stone pillar. In this place the Buddha Kāśyapa (Kia-she-po) long ago sat in meditation. By its side are traces where the four past Buddhas sat down and walked.
To the east of this spot, crossing the Mo-ho5 (Mahī) river, we come to a great forest in which is a stone pillar. This is the place where a heretic entered a condition of ecstasy and made a wicked vow. In old days there was a heretic called Udra-Rāmaputtra (U-teou-lan-tseu). In mind he soared above the vapoury clouds, whilst he left his body among the wilds and marshes. Here in this sacred forest, restraining his spirit, he left his traces.6 Having acquired the five supernatural faculties,7 he reached the highest condition of Dhyāna, and the king of Magadha greatly respected him. Each day at noon he invited him to his palace to eat. Udra-Rāmaputtra, mounting through space, walking in the air, came and went without hindrance. [S. 140]
5 The Mohana Nadī river.
6 Udra-Rāmaputtra was one of the teachers to whom Bodhisattva went before his penance (Fo-sho-hing-tsan-king, varga 12); but it is uncertain whether he is the one referred to in the text. The expression, "restraining his spirit" means that when he confined his spirit within his body he left here bodily traces.
7 Panchābhijñās; see Childers, Pali Dict., sub voc. Abhiññā ; Burnouf, Introd., p., 263; Lotus, pp. 820 ff.
The king of Magadha, expecting the moment of his arrival, kept watch for him, and, on his coming, respectfully placed for him his seat. The king being about to go forth on a tour, wished to put this affair in charge of some one during his absence, but he found no one in his inner palace whom he could select, capable of undertaking his commands.8 But (amongst his attendants) there was a little pet girl of modest appearance and well-mannered, so that in the whole palace none of his followers (wise folk) was able to excel her.9 The king of Magadha summoned this one, and said to her, "I am going some distance on a tour of observation, and I desire to put you in charge of an important business; you must, on your part, give all your mind to do thoroughly as I direct in the matter. It relates to that celebrated Ṛishi Udra-Rāmaputtra, whom I have for a long time treated with reverence and respect. Now when he comes here at the appointed time to dine, do you pay him the same attention that I do." Having left these instructions, the king forthwith gave notice of his absence (non-attendance).
8 That is, none of the females of the palace
9 Could take her place of precedence.
The little girl, according to her instructions, waited in expectation as usual. The great Ṛishi having come, she received him, and placed a seat for him. Udra-Rāmaputtra having touched the young female, felt within him the impure risings of earthly passion (of the world of desire), and so he lost his spiritual capabilities. Having finished his meal, he spoke of going, but he was unable to rise in the air. Then feeling ashamed, he prevaricated, and addressing the maiden said, "I am able, as the result of the discipline I practise, to enter Samādhi, and then, my mind at rest, I can ascend into the air, and come and go without a moment's delay. I have heard long ago, however, that the people of the country desire to see me. In agreement with the rule of the olden time, our [S. 141] utmost aim should be to benefit all that lives. How shall I regard only my own benefit and forget to benefit others ? I desire, therefore, on this occasion, to go through the gate and walk on the ground, to bring happiness and profit to all those who see me going."
The royal maiden hearing this, straightway spread the news far and wide. Then the people began with all their hearts to water and sweep the roads, and thousands upon thousands awaited to see him come. Udra-Rāmaputtra, stepping from the royal palace, proceeded on foot to that religious forest. Then sitting down in silence, he entered Samādhi. Then his mind, quickly escaping outside, was yet limited within the boundaries of the forest.10 And now (as it wandered through the woods) the birds began to scream and flutter about, and as it approached the pond, the fishes began to jump and splash, till at last his feelings being wrought up, and his mind becoming confused, he lost his spiritual capabilities. Giving up his attempt at ecstasy,11 he was filled with anger and resentment, and he made this wicked vow, "May I hereafter be born as a fierce and wicked beast, with the body of a fox and the wings of a bird, that I may seize and devour living creatures. May my body be 3000 li [里] long, and the outspread of my wings each way 1500 li [里]; then rushing into the forest, I will devour the birds, and entering the rivers, I will eat the fish."
10 That is, although his spirit was able to leave his body, yet, owing to his evil thoughts, it was unable to rise as before "above the vapoury clouds."
11 This seems to show that although his spirit quickly passed "outside," it was unable to obtain complete independence of his body.
When he had made this vow his heart grew gradually at rest, and by earnest endeavours he resumed his former state of ecstasy. Not long after this he died, and was born in the first of the Bhuvāni heavens,12 where his years [S. 142] would be 80,000 kalpas. Tathāgata left this record of him : "The years of his life in that heaven being ended, then he will reap the fruit of his old vow and possess this ignoble body. From the streams of the evil ways of birth he may not yet expect to emerge."13
12 That is, in the highest of the Arūpa heavens. This heaven is called in Chinese fi-seang-fi-fi-siang-tin, i.e., the heaven where there is neither thought (consciousness) nor an absence of thought; in Pāli, "Nevasaññānāsaññā" (see Childers, Pali Dict. sub voc. ) From the history given in the Fo-sho-king, it would seem that this refinement of language as to the character of the highest heaven is due to Udra-Rāmaputtra.
13 That is, although he is now in the highest heaven of substance (bhuva), where his life will last 80,000 great kalpas (an incalculable period), yet he is not saved from future misery. This exhibits the character of Buddha's conception of Nirvāṇa, that it is a condition free from any possibility of a return to mundane or other bodily form of existence.
To the east of Mahī river we enter a great wild forest, and going 100 li [里] or so, we come to the Ki'u-ki'u-chapo-to-shan (Kukkuṭapādagiri, the Cock's-foot Mountain). It is also called Kiu-liu-po-to-shan (Gurupādāḥ giri14). The sides of this mountain are high and rugged, the valleys and gorges are impenetrable. Tumultuous torrents rush down its sides, thick forests envelope the valleys, whilst tangled shrubs grow along its cavernous heights. Soaring upwards into the air are three sharp peaks ; their tops are surrounded by the vapours of heaven, and their shapes lost in the clouds. Behind these hills the venerable Mahā-Kāśyapa dwells wrapped in a condition of Nirvāṇa. People do not dare to utter his name, and therefore they speak of the "Guru-pādāḥ" (the venerable teacher.)15 Mahā-Kāśyapa was a Śrāvaka and a disciple (or [S. 143] a Śrāvaka disciple) perfectly possessed of the six supernatural faculties and the eight enfranchisements16 (ashṭau vimokshas).17 Tathāgata, his work of conversion being done, and just on the point of attaining Nirvāṇa, addressed Kāśyapa and said, "Through many18 kalpas I have undergone (diligently borne) painful penances for the sake of all that lives, seeking the highest form of religion. What I have all along prayed for (desired) I have now obtained to the full. Now, as I am desirous to die (enter Mahānirvāṇa), I lay on you the charge of the Dharma Piṭaka. Keep and disseminate (this doctrine) without loss or diminution. The golden-tissued Kashāya robe given me by my foster-mother (mother's sister)19 I bid you keep and deliver to Maitreya (T'se-chi) when he has completed the condition of Buddha.20 All those who engage in the profession of my bequeathed law, whether they be Bhikshus, Bhikshunīs, Upāsakas, or Upāsikās, must first (i.e., before this le accomplished) cross over and escape the stream of transmigration."
14 That is, the Mountain of the Venerable Master, i.e., Kāśyapa. Pāda is here added as a token of respect, as in Deva-pādāḥ, Kumārila-pādāḥ, &c. It seems to have been called the Cock's-foot from its shape, the three peaks or spurs resembling the foot of the cock. Fa-hian places it 3 li to the south of Gayā, probably a mistake for 3 yojanas to the east (see Fa-hian, Beal's ed., cap. xxxiii. n. 1). It has been identified by Cunningham with the village of Kurkihār (vid. Arch. Survey, vol. i. pp. 14-16 ; vol. xv. p. 4; and Anc. Geog. Ind., p. 460). This hill of the cock's foot must not be confused with the saṅnghārāma of the cock-garden near Patna. There is no evidence that there was a hill near this last establishment, and it is nowhere called the Kukkuṭa-pāda vihāra. The quotation made by Julien (vol. ii. 428 n.) refers to the hill near Gayā ; so also does the note of Burnouf, Introd., p. 366. See also Schiefner's Lebensbeschreibung Cakyamunis, p. 278; Ind. Ant., vol. xii. p. 327.
15 This is a difficult passage, but the sense is evident. Kāśyapa dwells in the mountain awaiting the arrival of Maitreya; he cannot therefore have passed into complete Nirvāṇa. In fact, the subsequent narrative shows that he will only reach that condition when Maitreya comes. I take the expression chung tsie mih to denote the indefinite character of his present condition, which cannot be called Nirvnna, but is a middle state of existence. Pada, as stated above, is an honorary affix; the expression ki-heou refers to the inner recesses of the mountain. Julien translates the passage thus: "In the sequence of time the great Kasyapa dwelt in this mountain, and there entered Nirvana. Men dare not call him by his name, and so they say "the foot of the venerable."
16 Shaḍabhijñās. See Childers, Pali Dict., s. v. Abhiññā, and ante, vol. i. p. 104, n. 73.
17 See Childers, u. s., s. v. Vimokho; Burnouf, Lotus, pp. 347, 824 f. and ante, vol. i. p. 149, n. 90.
19 The word means "waste" or "distant;" as we might say, through "a waste of ages," or "dreary ages."
20 This passage is translated by Julien thus: "Which Maitreya after he became Buddha left, that it might be transmitted to you." But this cannot be correct. Maitreya has not become Buddha. I translate it, "I deliver to you to keep, awaiting the time when Maitreya shall become perfect Buddha."
Kāśyapa having received this commission to undertake to preserve the true law, summoned an assembly21 (council or convocation). This done, he continued twenty years (in charge of the order), and then, in disgust at the impermanence [S. 144] of the world, and desiring to die, he went towards Cock's-foot Mountain. Ascending the north side of the mountain, he proceeded along the winding path, and came to the south-west ridge. Here the crags and precipices prevented him going on. Forcing his way through the tangled brushwood, he struck the rock with his staff, and thus opened a way. He then passed on, having divided the rock, and ascended till he was again stopped by the rocks interlacing one another. He again opened a passage through, and came out on the mountain peak on the north-east side. Then having emerged from the denies, he proceeded to the middle point of the three peaks. There he took the Kashāya garment (chīvara) of Buddha, and as he stood he expressed an ardent vow. On this the three peaks covered him over ; this is the reason why now these three rise up into the air. In future ages, when Maitreya shall have come and declared the threefold law,22 finding the countless persons opposed to him by pride, he will lead them to this mountain, and coming to the place where Kāśyapa is, in a moment (the snapping of the finger) Maitreya will cause it to open of itself, and all those people, having seen Kāśyapa, will only be more proud and obstinate. Then Kāśyapa, delivering the robe, and having paid profound reverence, will ascend into the air and exhibit all sorts of spiritual changes, emitting fire and vapour from his body. Then he will enter Nirvāṇa. At this time the people, witnessing these miracles, will dismiss their pride, and opening their minds, will obtain the fruit (of holiness). Now, therefore, on the top of the mountain is a stūpa built. On quiet evenings those looking from a distance see sometimes a bright light as it were of a torch ; but if they ascend the mountain there is nothing to be observed.23 [S. 145]
21 This is the usual phrase used for "calling a convocation."
22 The thrice-repeated law; see ante, p. 47, n. 10.
23 The three-peaked mountain here referred to has been identified by General Cunningham with the three peaks of the Murali mountain, which stands three miles north-north-east of the town of Kurkihār. There is still a square basement surrounded by quantities of bricks on the highest or middle peak of the three. Arch. Survey, vol. xv. p. 5.
Going to the north-east of the Cock's-foot Mountain about 100 li [里], we come to the mountain called Buddhavana (Fo-to-fa-na), with its peaks and cliffs lofty and precipitous. Among its steep mountain cliffs is a stone chamber where Buddha once descending stayed ; by its side is a large stone where Śakra (Shih), king of Devas, and Brahma-rāja (Fan-wang) pounded some ox-head (gośīrsha)24 sandal-wood, and anointed Tathāgata with the same. The scent (of this) is still to be perceived on the stone. Here also five hundred Arhats secretly dwell25 in a spiritual manner, and here those who are influenced by religious desire to meet with them sometimes see them, on one occasion under the form of Samaṇeras just entering the village to beg food, at other times as withdrawing (to their cells), on some occasions manifesting traces of their spiritual power in ways difficult to describe in detail.
24 In Pāli called gosīsam, among the Tibetans gorshi-sha, and among the Mongols gurshosha. It is apparently applied to sandal-wood having the odour of the cow's head " (Burnouf, Introd., p. 557). But perhaps its name is derived from its appearance, viz., a centre of silvery white wood within a darker outside circle. Compare the description of the bull that carried off Europa—κυκλος δ αργυρεοσ μεστωμαρμαιρε μετωπω. Abstract of Four Lectures, p. 158. For the circle on the forehead, see the figures "from the oldest painting in Cave X- at Ajaṇṭā" (Burgess, plates viii. ix. x., Report on the Paintings at Ajaṇṭā.
25 I do not find in the text that they entered Nirvāṇa here.
Going about 30 li [里] to the east, amongst wild valleys of the Buddhavana (Fo-to-fa-na) mountain, we come to the wood called Yashṭivana (Ye-sse-chi).26 The bamboos that grow here are large ; they cover the hill and extend through the valley. In former days there was a Brāhmaṇ, who hearing that the body of Śākya Buddha (Shih-kia-fo) was sixteen feet in height, was perplexed with doubt and would not credit it. Then taking a bamboo sixteen feet long, he desired to measure the height of Buddha; the body constantly overtopped the bamboo and exceeded the sixteen feet. So going on increasing, he could not find the right measurement. He then threw the bamboo on [S. 146] the ground and departed ; but because of this it stood upright and took root.
26 "The forest of the staff."
In the midst of this wood is a stūpa which was built by Aśoka-rāja. Here Tathāgata displayed for seven days great spiritual wonders (miracles) for the sake of the Devas, and preached the mysterious and excellent law.
In the forest of the staff (Yashṭivana) not long since there was an Upāsaka named Jayasena (She-ye-si-na), a Kshattriya of Western India. He was exceedingly simple-minded and moderate. He amused himself amid the forests and hills, dwelling in a sort of fairyland, whilst his mind wandered amid the limits of truth (true limits). He had deeply studied the mysteries both of orthodox and other treatises (inside and outside books). His language and observations were pure, and his arguments elevated ; his presence was quiet and dignified. The Śramaṇas, Brāhmaṇas, heretics of different schools, the king of the country, the great ministers and householders, and persons of rank came together to visit him and personally to ask him questions. His pupils occupied sixteen apartments ;27 and although nearly seventy years of age, he read with them diligently and without cessation, and applied their minds only to the study of Buddhist sūtras, rejecting all other engagements. Thus night and day he gave up body and mind to this pursuit alone.
27 The text here seems to be faulty.
It is a custom in India to make little stūpas of powdered scent made into a paste ; their height is about six or seven inches, and they place inside them some written extract from a sūtra; this they call a dharmaśarīra28 (fa-shi-li). When the number of these has become large, they then build a great stūpa, and collect all the others within it, and continually offer to it religious [S. 147] offerings. This then was the occupation of Jayasena (Ching-kian) ; with his mouth he declared the excellent law, and led and encouraged his students, whilst with his hand he constructed these stūpas. Thus he acquired the highest and most excellent religious merit. In the evening, again, he would walk up and down worshipping and repeating his prayers, or silently sit down in meditation. For eating or sleeping he had little time, and relaxed none of his discipline night or day. Even after he was an hundred years old his mind and body were in full activity. During thirty years he had made seven koṭis of these dharma-śarīra stūpas, and for every koṭi that he made he built a great stūpa and placed them in it. When full, he presented his religious offerings and invited the priests ; whilst they, on their part, offered him their congratulations.29 On these occasions a divine light shone around and spiritual wonders (miracles) exhibited themselves ; and from that time forth the miraculous light has continued to be seen.
28 See the seals found at Birdāban; Arch. Surv., vol. iii. p. 157, pl. xlvi.; see also J. Bom. B.R.A. S., vol vi. p. 157 f.
29 Or, invited the congregation of priests to a religious assembly to consecrate the service.
South-west of the Yashṭivana30 about 10 li [里] or so, on the south side of a great mountain, are two warm springs ;31 the water is very hot. In old days, Tathāgata caused this water to appear, and washed himself therein. The pure flow of these waters still lasts without diminution. Men far and near flock here to bathe, after which those who have suffered from disease or chronic affections are often healed. By the side of the springs is a stūpa, to mark the place where Tathāgata walked for exercise.
30 The Bamboo forest (Chang-lin) is still known as the Jakhti-ban ; it lies to the east of the Buddhain hill (Buddhavana), and is frequented by the people for the purpose of cutting bamboos (Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 461).
31 These springs are about two miles to the south of Jakhti-ban, at a place called Tapoban, which name is a common contraction of Tapta-pāṇi, or the "hot water" (Ibid.)
To the south-east of the Yashtivana about six or seven [S. 148] li [里] we come to a great mountain. Before a cross-ridge32 of this mountain is a stūpa. Here in old days Tathāgata explained the law during the three months of rain for the benefit of men and Devas. Then Bimbisāra-rāja (Pinpi-so-lo) wished to come to hear the law. He cut away the mountain, and piled up the stones to make steps in order to ascend. The width is about twenty paces and the length 3 or 4 li [里].33
32 Or it may be "a transverse pass."
33 The great mountain referred to in the text corresponds with the lofty hill of Handia, 1463 feet in height (Cunningham).
To the north of the great mountain 3 or 4 li [里] is a solitary hill. Formerly the Ṛishi Vyāsa34 (Kwang-po) lived here in solitude. By excavating the side of the mountain he formed a house. Some portions of the foundations are still visible. His disciples still hand down his teaching, and the celebrity of his bequeathed doctrine still remains.
34 This restoration rests on M. Julien's authority, as explained in his note (iii. 13).
To the north-east of the solitary hill 4 or 5 li [里] there is a small hill, also standing alone. In the side of this hill (has been excavated) a stone chamber. In length and breadth35 it is enough to seat 1000 persons or so. In this place Tathāgata, when living in the world, repeated the law for three months. Above the stone chamber is a great and remarkable rock, on which Śakra, king of Devas, and Brahma-rāja pounded some ox-head sandal-wood, and with the dust sprinkled the body of Tathāgata. The surface of the stone still emits the scent of the perfume.
35 Kwang mow, see Medhurst, Chin. Dict., sub Mow, p. 994.
At the south-west angle of the stone house there is a lofty cavern which the Indians call the palace of the Asuras ('O-su-lo). Formerly there was a good-natured fellow who was deeply versed in the use of magic formulae. He engaged with some companions, fourteen altogether, to covenant with one another to enter this lofty cavern. After going about 30 or 40 li [里], suddenly the whole place was [S. 149] lighted up with great brilliancy, and they saw a walled city before them, with towers and look-outs all of silver and gold and lapis-lazuli (lieu-li). The men having advanced to it, there were some young maidens who stationed themselves at the gates, and with joyful laughing faces greeted them and paid them reverence. Going on a little farther they came to the inner city-gates, where there were two slave-girls holding each of them a golden vessel full of flowers and scents. Advancing with these, they waited the approach of the visitors, and then said, "You must first bathe yourselves in yonder tank, and then anoint yourselves with the perfumes and crown yourselves with the flowers, and then you may enter the city. Do not hasten to enter yet ; only that master of magic can come in at once." Then the other thirteen men went down at once to bathe. Having entered the tank, they all at once became confused, and forgot all that had taken place, and were (found) sitting in the middle of a rice field distant from this due north, over a level country, about 30 or 40 li [里].
By the side of the stone house there is a wooden way (a road made with timber)36 about 10 paces wide and about 4 or 5 li [里]. Formerly Bimbisāra-rāja, when about to go to the place where Buddha was, cut out a passage through the rock, opened up the valleys, levelled the precipices, and led a way across the river-courses, built up walls of stone, and bored through the opposing crags, and made ladders up the heights to reach the place where Buddha was located.
36 Chan-tau, wooden bridges over mountain chasms (Khang-hi, quoted by Julien, note in loco).
From this spot proceeding eastward through the mountains about 60 li [里], we arrive at the city Kuśāgāra-pura (Kiu-she-kie-lo-pu-lo), or "the royal city of best grass (lucky grass)." This is the central point of the kingdom of Magadha.37 Here the former kings of the country [S. 150]
37 Kuśāgārapura was the original capital of Magadha, and was called Rājagṛiha, or the "royal residence." It was also named Girivraja, or the "hill surrounded." (See Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 462).
fixed their capital. It produces much of the most excellent, scented, fortunate grass, and therefore it is called "the city of the superior grass." High mountains surround it on each side, and form as it were its external walls.38 On the west it is approached through a narrow pass, on the north there is a passage through the mountains. The town is extended from east to west and narrow from north to south. It is about 150 li [里] in circuit. The remaining foundations of the wall of the inner city are about 30 li [里] in circuit. The trees called Kie-ni-kia (Kanakas) border all the roads, their flowers exhale a delicious perfume, and their colour is of a bright golden hue. In the spring months the forests are all of a golden colour.
38 So also Fa-hian states that the five hills which surround the town are like the walls of a city (cap. xxviii.)
Outside the north gate of the palace city is a stūpa. Here Devadatta (Ti-p'o-to-lo) and Ajātaśatru-rāja (Wi-sing-yun), having agreed together as friends, liberated the drunken elephant for the purpose of killing Tathāgata. But Tathāgata miraculously caused five lions to proceed from his finger-ends ; on this the drunken elephant was subdued and stood still before him.39
39 This is a perversion of the simple story found in the Fo-sho-king, vv. 1713 ss., and compare p. 246, n. 4.
To the north-east of this spot is a stūpa. This is where Śāriputra (She-li-tseu) heard Aśvajita ('O-shi-p'o-shi) the Bhikshu declare the law, and by that means reached the fruit (of an Arhat). At first Śāriputra was a layman ; he was a man of distinguished ability and refinement, and was highly esteemed by those of his own time. At this time, with other students, he accepted the traditional teaching as delivered to him. On one occasion, being about to enter the great city of Rājagṛiha, the Bhikshu Aśvajita (Ma-shing) was also just going his round of begging. Then Śāriputra, seeing him at a distance, addressed his disciples, saying, "Yonder man who comes, so full of dignity and nobleness, if he has not reached the fruit of sanctity [S. 151] (Arhatship) , how is he thus composed and quiet? Let us stop awhile and observe him as he approaches." Now as Aśvajita Bhikshu had reached the condition of an Arhat, his mind was self-possessed, his face composed and of an agreeable refinement ; thus, holding his religious staff, he came along with a dignified air. Then Śāriputra said, "Venerable sir ! are you at ease and happy ? Pray, who is your master, and what the system you profess, that you are so gladsome and contented ?"
Aśvajita answering him said, "Know you not the royal prince, the son of Śuddhodana-rāja, who gave up the condition of a Chakravarttīn monarch, and from pity to the six kinds of creatures for six years endured penance and reached the condition of Saṃbodhi, the state of perfect omniscience ? This is my master ! As to his law, it has respect to a condition including the absence of existence, without nonentity ;40 it is difficult to define ; only Buddhas with Buddhas can fathom it ; how much less can foolish and blind mortals, such as I, explain its principles. But for your sake I will recite a stanza in praise of the law of Buddha."41 Śāriputra having heard it, obtained forthwith the fruit of Arhatship.
40 The opposite of existence (yau, material or conditioned existence), and also of not-being.
41 The stanza he recited is in the Fo-sho-king, v. 1392. also p. 194, n. 2.
To the north of this place, not far off, there is a very deep ditch, by the side of which is built a stūpa ; this is the spot where Śrīgupta (She-li-kio-to) wished to destroy Buddha by means of fire concealed in the ditch and poisoned rice. Now Śrīgupta (Shing-mi) greatly honoured (believed in) the heretics, and his mind was deeply possessed by false views. All the Brahmachārins said, "The men of the country greatly honour Gautama (Kiao-ta-mo), and in consequence he causes our disciples to be without support. Invite him then to your house to eat, and before the door make a great ditch and fill it with fire, and cover it over slightly with wooden planks to conceal the fire ; moreover, [S. 152] poison the food, so that if he escape the fire (fiery ditch), he will take the poison."
Śrīgupta, according to his directions, caused the poison to be prepared, and then all the people in the town, knowing the evil and destructive design of Śrīgupta against the Lord of the World, entreated Buddha not to go to the house. The Lord said, "Be not distressed ; the body of Tathāgata cannot be hurt by such means as these." He therefore accepted the invitation and went. When his foot trod on the threshold of the door the fire in the pit became a tank of pure water with lotus flowers on its surface.
Śrīgupta having witnessed this, being filled with shame and fear lest his project should fail, said to his followers, "He has by his magical power escaped the fire ; but there is yet the poisoned food !" The Lord having eaten the rice, began to declare the excellent law, on which Śrīgupta, having attended to it, himself became a disciple.
To the north-east of this fiery ditch of Śrīgupta (Shing-mi), at a bend of the city, is a stūpa; this is where Jīvaka (Shi-fo-kia),42 the great physician, built a preaching-hall for Buddha. All round the walls he planted flowers and fruit trees. The traces of the foundation-walls and the decayed roots of the trees are still visible. Tathāgata, when he was in the world, often stopped here. By the side of this place are the remains of the house of Jīvaka, and the hollow of an old well also exists there still.
42 For the history of Jīvaka see S. Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 238.
To the north-east of the palace city going 14 or 15 li [里], we come to the mountain Gṛidhrakūṭa (Ki-li-tho-kiuch'a). Touching the southern slope of the northern mountain, it rises as a solitary peak to a great height, on which vultures make their abode. It appears like a high tower on which the azure tints of the sky are reflected, the colours of the mountain and the heaven being commingled. [S. 153]
When Tathāgata had guided the world for some fifty years, he dwelt much in this mountain, and delivered the excellent law in its developed form (kwang)43. Bimbisārarāja, for the purpose of hearing the law, raised a number of men to accompany him from the foot of the mountain to its summit. They levelled the valleys and spanned the precipices, and with the stones made a staircase about ten paces wide and 5 or 6 li [里] long. In the middle of the road there are two small stūpas, one called "Dismounting from the chariot" (Hia-shing), because the king, when he got here, went forward on foot. The other is called "Sending back the crowd" (T'ui-fan), because the king, separating the common folk, would not allow them to proceed with him. The summit of this mountain is long from the east to the west and narrow from north to south. There is a brick vihāra on the borders of a steep precipice at the western end of the mountain. It is high and wide and beautifully constructed. The door opens to the east. Here Tathāgata often stopped in old days and preached the law. There is now a figure of him preaching the law of the same size as life.
43 A great number of the later developed sūtras are said to have been delivered here. There is also a late form of belief which connects the spiritual form of Buddha with this mountain. It is barely possible that Buddha did in his later years declare a developed (mystical) form of his doctrine, and perhaps this mountain was the scene of his teaching ; but the greater portion of the sutras claiming the authority of his utterance here are fabulous. Compare Fa-hian, cap. xxix. The Vulture Peak is a part of the lofty hill now called Śaila-giri, but no caves have been discovered there (Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 466).
To the east of the vihāra is a long stone, on which Tathāgata trod as he walked up and down for exercise. By the side of it is a great stone about fourteen or fifteen feet high and thirty paces round. This is the place where Devadatta44 flung a stone from a distance to strike Buddha.
44 The story of Devadatta rolling down the stone will be found in Fa-hian, chap, xxix., also in the Fo-sho-king, p. 246, and in the Manual of Buddhism, p. 383. The accounts, however, slightly differ.
South of this, below the precipice, is a stūpa. Here [S. 154] Tathāgata, when alive in old time, delivered the Saddharma Puṇḍarīka Sūtra.45
45 Fa-hian relates how he visited the cave on this peak, and wept in recollection of Buddha's residence therein. Here also, he adds, "he delivered the Sheu-ling-yan Sūtra" This is the Śuraṅgama Sūtra. Hiuen Tsiang says he also delivered here the Saddharma Puṇḍarīka Sūtra. These sutras, belonging to the last stage of Buddhist development, are referred to this mountain, as it was the scene of Buddha's latest teaching. See Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 467; see also Fergusson, Cave Temples of India, p. 50.
To the south of the vihāra, by the side of a mountain cliff, is a great stone house. In this Tathāgata, when dwelling in the world long ago, entered Samādhi.
To the north-west of the stone house and in front of it is a great and extraordinary stone. This is the place where Ānanda (O-nan) was frightened by Māra. When the venerable Ānanda had entered Samādhi in this place, Māra-rāja, assuming the form of a vulture, in the middle of the night, during the dark portion of the month, took his place on this rock, and flapping his wings and uttering loud screams, tried to frighten the venerable one.46 Ānanda, filled with fear, was at a loss to know what to do; then Tathāgata, by his spiritual power, seeing his state, stretched out his hand to compose him. He pierced the stone wall and patted the head of Ānanda, and with his words of great love he spoke to him thus : "You need not fear the assumed form which Māra has taken." Ānanda in consequence recovered his composure, and remained with his heart and body at rest and in peace.
46 Fa-hian, chap. xxix.
Although years and months have elapsed since then, yet the bird traces on the stone and the hole in the rock47 still remain visible.
47 Julien translates "The long cavern which traverses the flanks of the mountain." But the "long cavern" is the hole referred to, piercing the side of the rock.
By the side of the vihāra there are several stone houses,48 where Śāriputra and other great Arhats entered Samādhi. In front of the stone house of Śāriputra is a [S. 155] great well, dry and waterless. The hollow (shaft) still remains.
48 Probably caves or cells. Cunningham understands them to be small rooms built against the cliff (Anc Geog., p. 467). The Chinese, quite bears out this idea.
To the north-east of the vihāra, in the middle of a rocky stream, is a large and flat stone. Here Tathāgata dried his Kashāya garment The traces of the tissue of the robe still remain, as though they were cut out on the rock.
By the side of this, and upon a rock, is a foot-trace of Buddha. Although the "wheel" outline is somewhat obscure, yet it can be distinctly traced.
On the top of the northern mountain is a stūpa. From this point Tathāgata beheld the town of Magadha,49 and for seven days explained the law.
49 That is, as it seems, the capital of Magadha, viz., Rājagṛiha.
To the west of the north gate of the mountain city is the mountain called Pi-pu-lo (Vipula-giri).50 According to the common report of the country it is said, "On the northern side of the south-western crags of this mountain there were formerly five hundred warm springs ; now there are only some ten or so ; but some of these are warm and others cold, but none of them hot." These springs have their origin to the south of the Snowy Mountains from the Anavatapta (Wu-jeh-no-c'hi) lake,51 and flowing underground, burst forth here. The water is very sweet and pure, and the taste is like that of the water of the lake. The streams (from the lake) are five hundred in number (branches), and as they pass by the lesser underground fire-abodes (hells), the power of the flames ascending causes the water to be [S. 156]
50 I have restored Pi-pu-lo to Vipula in deference to Julien. But it might be equally well restored to Vaibhāra or Baibhār, and as Cunningham in his map of Rājgir (Arch. Survey, vol. i. pl. xiv.) places Baibhār to the west of the north gate of the town, it would be more agreeable to the account in the text to restore it so. On the other hand, as Hiuen Tsiang places the hot springs on the south-western slopes of Pi-po-lo, and as we are told that "the hot springs of Rājagṛiha are found at the eastern foot of Mount Baibhār and the western foot of Mount Vipula" (Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 466), it would seem that he must be speaking of Vipula.
51 Rāvaṇahrad; in Pāli, Anavatatta, in Tibetan, Ma-dros, in Chinese, Wu-je-nao. See Asiat. Res., vol. xx. p. 65, or Ann. Musée Guimet, tom. ii. p. 168 ; Burnouf, Introd., pp. 152, 154; and ante, vol. i. pp. 11-13.
hot. At the mouths of the various hot springs there are placed carved stones, sometimes shaped like lions, and at other times as the heads of white elephants ; sometimes stone conduits are constructed, through which the water flows on high (aqueducts), whilst below there are stone basins, in which the water collects like a pond. Here people of every region come, and from every city, to bathe ; those who suffer from any disease are often cured. On the right and left of the warm springs52 are many stūpas and the remains of vihāras close together. In all these places the four past Buddhas have sat and walked, and the traces of their so doing are still left. These spots being surrounded by mountains and supplied with water, men of conspicuous virtue and wisdom take up their abode here, and there are many hermits who live here also in peace and solitude.
52 The names of these warm springs are given by Cunningham (Anc. Geog., p. 466).
To the west of the hot springs is the Pippala (Pipo-lo) stone house.53 When the Lord of the World was alive in olden times, he constantly dwelt here. The deep cavern which is behind the walls of this house is the palace abode of an Asura (or, the Asuras). Many Bhikshus who practise Samādhi dwell here. Often we may see strange forms, as of Nāgas, serpents, and lions, come forth from it. Those who see these things lose their reason and become dazed. Nevertheless, this wonderful place (excellent land) is one in which holy saints dwell, and occupying the spot consecrated by such sacred [S. 157] traces, they forget the calamities and evils that threaten them.
53 This stone house is mentioned also by Fa-hian, chap. xxx. He places it to the south of the new city, west about three hundred paces. It would therefore be in Mount Baibhar, and Cunningham suggests that Pi-pu-lo may be an equivalent for Vaibhāra (Arch. Survey, i. p. 21 n.). It may be so, but it is usually restored to Pippala. This stone house is supposed to be the same as the present Sonbhāndār, or "treasury of gold" (ibid,) General Cunningham also identifies the Sonbhāndār cave with the Sattapanni cave. But this seems impossible. Mr. Fergusson's remarks on this perplexing subject are intelligible and satisactory. See Cave Temples of India, pp. 49, 50, and note.
Not long ago there was a Bhikshu of a pure and upright life, whose mind was enamoured of solitude and quiet ; he desired to practise Samādhi concealed in this house. Some one protested and said, "Go not there ! Many calamities happen there, and strange things causing death are frequent. It is difficult to practise Samādhi in, such a spot, and there is constant fear of death. You ought to remember what has happened before time, if you would not reap the fruits of after-repentance." The Bhikshu said, "Not so ! My determination is to seek the fruit of Buddha and to conquer the Deva Māra. If these are the dangers of which you speak, what need to name them ?" Then his took his pilgrim's staff and proceeded to the house. There he reared an altar and began to recite his magic protective sentences. After the tenth day, a maiden came forth from the cave and addressed the Bhikshu, saying, "Sir of the coloured robes ! you observe the precepts, and, with full purpose, you adopt the refuge (found in Buddha) ; you aspire after (prepare) wisdom, and practise Samādhi, and to promote in yourself spiritual power, so that you may be an illustrious guide of men, you dwell here and alarm me and my fellows ! But how is this in agreement with the doctrine of Tathāgata ?" The Bhikshu said, "I practise a pure life, following the holy teaching (of Buddha). I conceal myself among the mountains and dells to avoid the tumult of life. In suddenly bringing a charge against me, I ask where is my fault ?" She replied, "Your reverence ! when you recite your prayers, the sound causes fire to burst into (my house) from without, and burns my abode ; it afflicts me and my family ! I pray you, pity us, and do not say your charmed prayers any more !"
The Bhikshu said, "I repeat my prayers to defend myself, and not to hurt any living thing. In former days, [S. 158] a religious person (a disciple) occupied this place and practised Samādhi with a view to obtain the holy fruit and to help the miserable ;54 then with unearthly sights he was frightened to death and gave up his life. This was your doing. What have you to say ?"
54 I.e., to succour the people in the dark ways of birth, i.e., demons and pretas and "the lost."
She replied, "Oppresed with a weight of guilt, my wisdom is small indeed ; but from this time forth I will bar my house and keep the partition (between it and this chamber). Do you, venerable one, on your part, I pray, repeat no more spiritual formulae."
On this the Bhikshu prepared himself in Samādhi, and from that time rested in quiet, none hurting him.
On the top of Mount Vipula (Pi-pu-lo) is a stūpa. This is where in old times Tathāgata repeated the law. At the present time naked heretics (Nirgranthas) frequent this place in great numbers ; they practise penance night and day without intermission, and from morn till night walk round (the stūpa) and contemplate it with respect.
To the left of the northern gate of the mountain city (Girivjaja, Shan-shing), going east, on the north side of the southern crag (precipice or cliff), going 2 or 3 li [里], we come to a great stone house in which Devadatta formerly entered Samādhi.
Not far to the east of this stone house, on the top of a flat stone, there are coloured spots like blood. By the side of this rock a stūpa has been built. This is the place where a Bhikshu practising Samādhi wounded himself and obtained the fruit of holiness.
There was formerly a Bhikshu who diligently exerted himself in mind and body, and secluded himself in the practice of Samādhi. Years and months elapsed, and he had not obtained the holy fruit. Retiring from the spot, he upbraided himself, and then he added with a sigh, "I despair of obtaining the fruit of Arhatship (freedom from learning). What use to keep this body, the source of impediment [S. 159] from its very character." Having spoken thus, he mounted on this stone and gashed his throat. Forthwith he reached the fruit of an Arhat, and ascended into the air and exhibited spiritual changes ; finally, his body was consumed by fire, and he reached Nirvāṇa.55 Because of his noble resolution they have built (this stūpa) as a memorial. To the east of this place, above a rocky crag, there is a stone stūpa. This is the place where a Bhikshu practising Samādhi threw himself down and obtained the fruit. Formerly, when Buddha was alive, there was a Bhikshu who sat quietly in a mountain wild, practising the mode of Samādhi leading to Arhatship. For a long time he had exercised the utmost zeal without result. Night and day he restrained his thoughts, nor ever gave up his quiet composure. Tathāgata, knowing that his senses were fit for the acquirement (of emancipation), went to the place for the purpose of converting him (perfecting him). In a moment56 he transported himself from the garden of bamboos (Veṇuvana) to this mountainside, and there calling him,57 stood standing awaiting him.
55 This incident is also related by Fa-hian, cap. xxx.
56 So I understand tan c'hi, "in the snapping of a finger." Julien translates it as though Buddha called the Bhikshu by cracking his fingers.
57 It may be either "calling him" or "calling an assembly."
At this time the Bhikshu, seeing from a distance the holy congregation, his heart and body ravished with joy, he cast himself down from the mountain. But by his purity of heart and respectful faith for Buddha's teaching before he reached the ground he gained the fruit of Arhatship. The Lord of the World then spoke and said, "You ought to know the opportunity." Immediately he ascended into the air and exhibited spiritual transformation. To show his pure faith they have raised this memorial.
Going about one li [里] from the north gate of the mountain city we come to the Karaṇḍaveṇuvana (Kia-lan-t'ochuh-yuen),58 where now the stone foundation and the [S. 160]
58 The bamboo garden of Karaṇḍa, or Kalaṇḍa. For an account of this garden see Fa-hian, (Beal's edit., p. 117, n. 2), and also Julien in loco, n. 1; see also Burnouf, Introd., 1st ed. p. 456; Lalita Vistara, p. 415.
brick walls of a vihāra exist. The door faces the east. Tathāgata, when in the world, frequently dwelt here, and preached the law for the guidance and conversion of men and to rescue the people. They have now made a figure of Tathāgata the size of life. In early days there was in this town a great householder (gṛihapati) called Karaṇḍa ; at this time he had gained much renown by giving to the heretics a large bamboo garden. Then coming to see Tathāgata and hearing his law, he was animated by a true faith. He then regretted that the multitude of unbelievers should dwell in that place. "And now," he said, "the leader of gods and men has no place in which to lodge." Then the spirits and demons, affected by his faithfulness, drove away the heretics, and addressing them said, "Karaṇḍa, the householder, is going to erect a vihāra here for the Buddha ; you must get away quickly, lest calamity befall you!"
The heretics, with hatred in their heart and mortified in spirit, went away ; thereupon the householder built this vihāra. When it was finished he went himself to invite Buddha. Thereon Tathāgata received the gift.
To the east of the Karaṇḍaveṇuvana is a stūpa which was built by Ajātaśatru-rāja. After the Nirvāṇa of Tathāgata the kings divided the relics (she-li) ; the king Ajātaśatru returned then with his share, and from a feeling of extreme reverence built (a stūpā) and offered his religious offerings to it. When Aśoka-rāja (Wu-yau) became a believer, he opened it and took the relics, and in his turn built another stūpa. This building constantly emits miraculous light.
By the side of the stūpa of Ajātaśatru-rāja is another stūpa which encloses the relics of half of the body of Ānanda. Formerly, when the saint was about to reach Nirvāṇa, he left the country of Magadha and proceeded to the town of Vaiśālī (Fei- she-li). As these two countries disputed (about him) and began to raise troops, the venerable one, from pity, divided his body into two parts. The king of Magadha, receiving his share, returned and offered [S. 161] to it his religious homage, and immediately prepared in this renowned land, with great honour, to raise a stūpa. By the side of this building is a place where Buddha walked up and down.
Not far from this is a stūpa. This is the place where Śāriputra and Mudgalaputra dwelt during the rainy season.
To the south-west of the bamboo garden (Veṇuvana) about 5 or 6 li [里], on the north side of the southern mountain, is a great bamboo forest. In the middle of it is a large stone house. Here the venerable Kāśyapa with 999 great Arhats, after Tathāgata's Nirvāṇa, called a convocation (for the purpose of settling} the three Piṭakas.59 Before it is the old foundation-wall. King Ajātaśatru made this hall60 for the sake of accommodating the great Arhats who assembled to settle the Dharma-piṭaka.
59 This is the famous Sattapaṇṇi cave, in which the "first Buddhist council" was held "At the entrance of the Sattapaṇṇa cave in the Magadha town (compare ante, n. 45) Giribbaja (i.e., Girivraja or Rājagṛiha) the first council was finished after seven months" (Dīpa-vaṃsa (Oldenberg) v. 5). In connection with this extract I would refer to the sentence preceding it
(4) where we have named "the second beginning of the Vassa season." This seems to explain the constant use of the expression, the "double resting season," by Hiuen Tsiang. See below, n. 61.
60 The hall appears to have been structural; the cave at the back was natural. See Fergusson, Cave Temples of India, p. 49.
At first, when Mahā Kāśyapa was seated in silent (study) in the desert (mountain forests), suddenly a bright light burst forth, and he perceived the earth shaking. Then he said, "What fortunate change of events is there, that this miracle should occur?" Then exerting his divine sight, he saw the Lord Buddha between the two trees entering Nirvāṇa. Forthwith he ordered his followers to accompany him to the city of Kuśinagara (Ku-shi). On the way they met a Brāhmaṇ holding in his hands a divine flower. Kāśyapa, addressing him, said, "Whence come you ? Know you where our great teacher is at present ?" The Brāhmaṇ replied and said, "I have but just come from yonder city of Kuśinagara, where I saw your great master just entered into Nirvāṇa. A vast [S. 162] multitude of heavenly beings were around him offering their gifts in worship, and this flower, which I hold, I brought thence."
Kāśyapa having heard these words said to his followers, "The sun of wisdom has quenched his rays. The world is now in darkness. The illustrious guide has left us and gone, and all flesh must fall into calamity."
Then the careless Bhikshus said one to another with satisfaction, "Tathāgata has gone to rest. This is good for us, for now, if we transgress, who is there to reprove or restrain us ?"
Then Kāśyapa, having heard this, was deeply moved and afflicted, and he resolved to assemble (collect) the treasure of the law (Dharma-piṭaka) and bring to punishment the transgressors. Accordingly he proceeded to the two trees, and regarding Buddha, he offered worship.
And now the King of the Law having gone from the world, both men and Devas were left without a guide, and the great Arhats, moreover, were cleaving to (the idea of their) Nirvāṇa. Then the great Kāśyapa reflected thus : "To secure obedience to the teaching of Buddha, we ought to collect the Dharma-piṭaka" On this he ascended Mount Sumeru and sounded the great gong (ghaṇṭā), and spake thus : "Now then, in the town of Rājagṛiha there is going to be a religious assembly.61 Let all those who have obtained the fruit (of arhatship) hasten to the spot."
61 A business relating to religion ; a religious proceeding.
In connection with the sounding of the gong the direction of Kāśyapa spread far and wide through the great chiliocosm, and all those possessed of spiritual capabilities, hearing the instructions, assembled in convocation. At this time Kāśyapa addressed the assembly and said, "Tathāgata having died (attained to extinction or Nirvāṇa) ; the world is empty. We ought to collect the Dharmapiṭaka, in token of our gratitude to Buddha. Now then, being about to accomplish this, there should be profound composure (quiet). How can this be done in the midst of [S. 163] such a vast multitude ? Those who have acquired the three species of knowledge (trividyā), who have obtained the six supernatural faculties (shaḍabhijñās), who have kept the law without failure, whose powers of discrimination (dialectic) are clear, such superior persons as these may stop and form the assembly. Those who are learners with only limited fruit, let such depart to their homes."
On this 999 men were left ; but he excluded Ānanda, as being yet a learner. Then the great Kāśyapa, calling him, addressed him thus : "You are not yet free from defects ; you must leave the holy assembly." He replied, "During many years I have followed Tathāgata as his attendant ; every assembly that has been held for considering the law, I have joined ; but now, as you are going to hold an assembly after his death (wai), I find myself excluded ; the King of the Law having died, I have lost my dependence and helper."
Kāśyapa said, "Do not cherish your sorrow ! You were a personal attendant on Buddha indeed, and you therefore heard much, and so you loved (much), and therefore you are not free from all the ties that bind (the soul or affections)"
Ānanda, with words of submission, retired and came to a desert place, desiring to reach a condition "beyond, learning;" he strove for this without intermission, but with no result. At length, wearied out, he desired one day to lie down. Scarcely had his head reached the pillow62 when lo ! he obtained he condition of an Arhat.
62 For a similar account of Ananda's illumination, see Abstract of Four Lectures, p. 72, and compare the whole account.
He then went to the assembly, and knocking at the door, announced his arrival. Kāśyapa then asked him, saying, "Have you got rid of all ties ? In that case exercise your spiritual power and enter without the door being opened !" Ānanda, in compliance with the order, entered through the keyhole,63 and having paid reverence to the priesthood, retired and sat down. [S. 164]
63 In other accounts it is he entered through the wall.
At this time fifteen days of the summer rest (Varshāvasāna) had elapsed. On this Kāśyapa rising, said, "Consider well and listen ! Let Ānanda, who ever heard the words of Tathāgata, collect by singing through64 the Sūtra-piṭaka. Let Upāli (Yeu-po-li), who clearly understands the rules of discipline ( Vinaya), and is well known to all who know, collect the Vinaya-piṭaka ; and I, Kāśyapa, will collect the Abhidharma-piṭaka." The three months of rain65 being past, the collection of the Tripiṭaka was finished. As the great Kāśyapa was the president (Sthavira) among the priests, it is called the Sthavira (Chang-tso-pu) convocation.66
64 Chanting or rehearsing, saṅgīti.
65 Or, the second "three months." It is to be noted that the season of Wass was twofold, either the first "three months," or, the second "three months."
66 This is contrary to the usual explanation, which makes the Sthavira school date from the second convocation at Vaiśālī.
North-west of the place where the great Kāśyapa held the convocation is a stūpa. This is where Ānanda, being forbidden by the priests to take part in the assembly, came and sat down in silence and reached the fruit (position) of an Arhat. After this he joined the assembly.
Going west from this point 20 li [里] or so, is a stūpa built by Aśoka-rāja. This is the spot where the "great assembly" (Mahāsaṅgha) formed their collection of books (or, held their assembly). Those who had not been permitted to join Kāśyapa's assembly, whether learners or those above learning (Arhats), to the number of 100,000 men, came together to this spot and said, "Whilst Tathāgata was alive we all had a common master, but now the King of the Law is dead it is different. We too wish to show our gratitude to Buddha, and we also will hold an assembly for collecting the scriptures." On this the common folk with the holy disciples came to the assembly (all assembled), the foolish and wise alike flocked together and collected the Sūtra-piṭaka, the Vinaya-piṭaka, the Abhidharma-piṭaka, the miscellaneous Piṭaka (Khuddakanikāya)67, and [S. 165] the Dhāraṇī-piṭaka. Thus they distinguished five Piṭakas. And because in this assembly both common folk and holy personages were mixed together, it was called "the assembly of the great congregation" (Mahāsaṅgha).68
67 Or perhaps the Sannipāta-nikāyya.
68 This account, too, differs from the common tradition, which makes this school of the great assembly date from the schism at Vaixāli. The statement, however, of Hiuen Tsiang, that the additional piṭakas were collated at this assembly is a useful and suggestive one.
To the north of the Veṇuvana Vihāra about 200 paces we come to the Karaṇḍa lake (Karaṇḍahrada). When Tathāgata was in the world he preached often here. The water was pure and clear, and possessed of the eight qualities.69 After the Nirvāṇa of Buddha it dried up and disappeared.
69 For the eight qualities of water see J. R A. S., vol. ii. pp. 1, 141.
To the north-west of the Karaṇḍahrada, at a distance of 2 or 3 li [里], is a stūpa, which was built by Aśoka-rāja It is about 60 feet high ; by the side of it is a stone pillar on which is a record engraved relating to the foundation of the stūpa. It is about 50 feet high, and on the top has the figure of an elephant.
To the north-east of the stone pillar, not far, we come to the town of Rājagṛiha70 (Ho-lo-shi-ki-li-hi). The outer walls of this city have been destroyed, and there are no remnants of them left; the inner city (walls),71 although in a ruined state, still have some elevation from the ground, and are about 20 li [里] in circuit. In the first case, Bimbisāra-rāja established his residence in Kuśāgāra; in this place the houses of the people, being close together, were frequently burned with fire and destroyed. When one house was in flames, it was impossible to prevent the whole neighbourhood sharing in the calamity, and consequently the whole was burned up. Then the people made loud complaints, and were unable to rest quietly in their dwellings. The king said, "By my demerit the lower people are afflicted ; [S. 166] what deed of goodness (meritorious virtue) can I do in order to be exempt from such calamities ?" His ministers said, "Mahārāja, your virtuous government spreads peace and harmony, your righteous rule causes light and progress. It is by want of due attention on the part of the people that these calamities of fire occur. It is necessary to make a severe law to prevent such occurrences hereafter. If a fire breaks out, the origin must be diligently sought for, and to punish the principal guilty person, let him be driven into the cold forest. Now this cold forest (śītavana) is the place of corpses abandoned (cast out) there. Every one esteems it an unlucky place, and the people of the land avoid going there and passing through it. Let him be banished there as a cast-out corpse. From dread of this fate, the people will become careful and guard (against the outbreak of fire)." The king said, "It is well ; let this announcement be made, and let the people attend to it."
70 "The royal abode" (Wang she). This is what Fa-hian calls " the new city." It was to the north of the mountains.
71 That is, the walls of the royal precincts or the citadel.
And now it happened that the king's palace was the first to be burned with fire. Then he said to his ministers, "I myself must be banished ;" and he gave up the government to his eldest son in his own place. "I wish to maintain the laws of the country (he said) ; I therefore myself am going into exile."
At this time the king of Vaiśālī hearing that Bimbisāra-rāja was dwelling alone in the "cold forest," raised an army and put it in movement to invade (make a foray) when nothing was ready (to resist him). The lords of the marches (frontiers), hearing of it, built a town,72 and as the king was the first to inhabit it, it was called "the royal city" (Rājagṛiha). Then the ministers and the people all flocked there with their families.
72 That is, as it seems, in the place where the king was living. From this it would appear that the site of the new town of Rājagṛiha, had been before used as a burial-place for the people of the "old town."
It is also said that Ajātaśatru-rāja first founded this [S. 167] city, and the heir-apparent of Ajātaśatru having come to the throne, he also appointed it to be the capital, and so it continued till the time of Aśoka-rāja, who changed the capital to Pāṭaliputra, and gave the city of Rājagṛiha to the Brāhmaṇs, so that now in the city there are no common folk to be seen, but only Brāhmaṇs to the number of a thousand families.
At the south-west angle of the royal precincts73 are two small saṅghārāmas; the priests who come and go, and are strangers in the place, lodge here. Here also Buddha, when alive, delivered the law (preached). Northwest from this is a stūpa ; this is the site of an old village where the householder Jyotishka74 (Ch'u-ti-se-kia) was born.
73 I.e., of the inner city of Rājagṛiha.
74 In Chinese Sing lih, "constellation" or "star collection."
Outside the south gate of the city, on the left of the road, is a stūpa. Here Tathāgata preached and converted Rāhula (Lo-hu-lo).75
75 If this Lo-hu-lo be the son of Buddha, his conversion is generally stated to have occurred at Kapilavastu (Manual of Budhism, p. 206).
Going north from this 30 li [里] or so, we come to Nālanda saṅghārāma76 The old accounts of the country say that to the south of this saṅghārāma, in the middle of an Āmra ('An-mo-lo) grove, there is a tank. The Nāga of this tank is called Nālanda.77 By the side of it is built the saṅghārāma, which therefore takes the name (of the Nāga). But the truth is that Tathāgata in old days practised the life of a Bodhisattva here, and became the king of a great country, and established his capital in this land. Moved by pity for living things, he delighted in continually relieving them. In remembrance of this virtue he was called78 "charity without intermission;" and the saṅghārāma [S. 168]
was called in perpetuation of this name. The site was originally an Āmra garden. Five hundred merchants bought it for ten koṭis of gold pieces and gave it to Buddha. Buddha preached the law here during three months, and the merchants and others obtained the fruit of holiness. Not long after the Nirvāṇa of Buddha, a former king of this country named Śakrāditya (Shi-kia-lo-'o-t'ie-to) respected and esteemed the (system of the) one Vehicle,79 and honoured very highly the three treasures.80 Having selected by augury a lucky spot, he built this saṅghārāma. When he began the work he wounded, in digging, the body of the Nāga. At this time there was a distinguished soothsayer belonging to the heretical sect of the Nirgranthas. He having seen the occurrence, left this record : "This is a very superior site. If you build here a saṅghārāma, it must of necessity become highly renowned. Throughout the five Indies it will be a model. For a period of a thousand years it will nourish still. Students of all degrees will here easily accomplish their studies. But many will spit blood because of this wound given to the Nāga."
76 Nālanda has been identified with the village of Baragaon, which lies seven miles north of Rājgir (Cunningham, Anc. Geog., p. 468).
77 According to I-tsing the name Nālanda is derived from Nāga Nanda (see J. R. A. S., N.S., vol. xiii. p. 571). For a description of this temple of Nālanda see "Two Chinese Buddhist Inscriptions found at Buddha Gayā," J. R. A. S., N.S., vol. xiii. l. c. See also Abstract of Four Lectures, p. 140.
78 So I understand the passage. It has no reference to the Nāga. The word Nālanda would thus appear to be derived from na + alam + da, "not giving enough," or "not having enough to give."
79 The "one Vehicle," according to the authority quoted by Julien (n. 2 in loco) is "the vehicle of Buddha, which is compared to a car formed of seven precious substances, and drawn by a white ox." But the expression, "one Vehicle," is a common one in later Buddhist books to denote the nature of Buddha, to which we all belong, and to which we all shall return.
80 Triratnāni— Buddha, dharma, saṅgha.
His son, Buddhagupta-rāja (Fo-t'o-kio-to), who succeeded him, continued to labour at the excellent undertaking of his father. To the south of this he built another saṅghārāma.
Tathāgatagupta-rāja (Ta-tha-kie-to-kio-lo) vigorously practised the former rules (of his ancestors), and he built east from this another saṅghārāma.
Balāditya-rāja (P'o-lo-'o-tie-lo) succeeded to the empire. On the north-east side he built a saṅghārāma. [S. 169] The work being done, he called together an assembly for congratulation. He respected equally the obscure and the renowned, and invited common folk and men of religion (holiness) without distinction. The priests of all India came together for the distance of 10,000 li [里]. After all were seated and at rest, two priests arrived. They led them up the three-storeyed pavilion. Then they asked them, saying, "The king, when about to call the assembly, first asked men of all degrees (common and holy). From what quarter do your reverences come so late ?" They said, "We are from the country of China. Our teacher81 was sick. Having nourished him, we set out to accept the king's far-off invitation.82 This is the reason why we have arrived so late."
81 It is true the symbol shang in this phrase is not the same as that forming the second member of the word hoshang (upādhyāya), but they are the same in sound, and therefore I think ho-shang in the text should be translated "teacher."
82 That is, the invitation coming from a long distance.
The assembly hearing this, were filled with astonishment, and proceeded at once to inform the king. The king knowing that they were holy persons, went himself to interrogate them. He mounted the pavilion, but he knew not where they had gone.83 The king then was affected by a profound faith ; he gave up his country and became a recluse. Having done so, he placed himself as the lowest of the priests, but his heart was always uneasy and ill at rest. "Formerly (he said) I was a king, and the highest among the honourable ; but now I have become a recluse, I am degraded to the bottom of the priesthood." Forthwith he went to the priests, and said words to the above effect. On this the saṅgha resolved that they who had not received the full orders should be classed according to their natural years of life.84 This saṅghārāma is the only one in which this law exists. [S. 170]
83 That is, he ascended the pavilion with three stages where the strangers from China had been received ; but when he arrived he found they had departed.
84 The usual order was that they should be classed according to the number of years they had been "professed disciples;" but in the convent of Balāditya the order was that they should be classed according to their natural age, up to the time of their full ordination. The king, although he had become a disciple, was not fully ordained.
This king's son, called Vajra (Fa-she-lo), came to the throne in succession, and was possessed of a heart firm in the faith. He again built on the west side of the convent a sahghārāma.
After this a king of Central India built to the north of this a great saṅghārāma. Moreover, he built round these edifices a high wall with one gate.85 A long succession of kings continued the work of building, using all the skill of the sculptor, till the whole is truly marvellous to behold. The king86 said, "In the hall of the monarch who first began the saṅghārāma I will place a figure of Buddha, and I will feed forty priests of the congregation every day to show my gratitude to the founder."
85 That is, to enter the whole area.
86 But it is not said what king. The symbol, too, is ti, not wang. Is Śīlāditya referred to? He was not to take the name of wang or ta wang (see vol. i. p. 213 n. 21).
The priests, to the number of several thousands, are men of the highest ability and talent. Their distinction is very great at the present time, and there are many hundreds whose fame has rapidly spread through distant regions. Their conduct is pure and unblamable. They follow in sincerity the precepts of the moral law. The rules of this convent are severe, and all the priests are bound to observe them. The countries of India respect them and follow them. The day is not sufficient for asking and answering profound questions. From morning till night they engage in discussion ; the old and the young mutually help one another. Those who cannot discuss questions out of the Tripiṭaka are little esteemed, and are obliged to hide themselves for shame. Learned men from different cities, on this account, who desire to acquire quickly a renown in discussion, come here in multitudes to settle their doubts, and then the streams (of their wisdom) spread far and wide. For this reason some persons usurp the name (of Nālanda students), and in going to and fro receive honour in consequence. If men [S. 171] of other quarters desire to enter and take part in the discussions, the keeper of the gate proposes some hard questions ; many are unable to answer, and retire. One must have studied deeply both old and new (books) before getting admission. Those students, therefore, who come here as strangers, have to show their ability by hard discussion ; those who fail compared with those who succeed are as seven or eight to ten. The other two or three of moderate talent, when they come to discuss in turn in the assembly, are sure to be humbled, and to forfeit their renown. But with respect to those of conspicuous talent of solid learning, great ability, illustrious virtue, distinguished men, these connect (their high names) with the succession (of celebrities belonging to the college), such as Dharmapāla (Hu-fa)87 and Chandrapāla (Hu-yueh),88 who excited by their bequeathed teaching the thoughtless and worldly ; Guṇamati (Tih-hwui)89 and Sthiramati (Kin-hwui),90 the streams of whose superior teaching spread abroad even now; Prabhamitra (Kwang-yeu),91 with his clear discourses ; Jinamitra (Shing-yeu),92 with his exalted eloquence ; the pattern and fame (sayings and doings) of Jñānachandra (Chi-yueh)93 reflect his brilliant activity ; Śigrabuddha (?) (Ming-min), and Śīlabhadra (Kiai-hien),94 and other eminent men whose names are lost. These illustrious personages, known to all, excelled in their attainments (virtue) all their distinguished predecessors, and passed the bounds of the ancients in their learning. Each of these composed some tens of treatises and commentaries [S. 172] which were widely diffused, and which for their perspicuity are passed down to the present time.
87 A native of Kañchipura, author of the Śabdavidyā-saṃyukta śāstra (Max Müller, pp. 308 n., 309-310 and n., 346, 348-349. 361.
88 See Vassilief ; Max Müller, India, p. 311.
89 Max Müller, India, p. 305 and n., pp. 309-310 n., p. 362.
90 Pupil of Ārya Asaṅga (Max Müller, pp. 305, 310n.,318 n.; Vassilief, pp. 59 78, 226-227, 305).
91 Po-lo -pho-mi-to-lo of Central India, by caste a Kshattriya. He reached China in A.D. 627, and died in 633 at the age of sixty-nine (Beal, Abs. Four. Lect., p. 28; Max Müller, Ind., p. 312).
92 Eitel, p. 37.
93 Max Müller, Ind., pp. 312-361 ; Eitel, Djñānatchandra.
94 The favourite teacher of Hiuen tsiang. Vie, pp. 144, 212, 215, 225; Max Müller, India, pp. 310, 343 ; Eitel, s. v.
The sacred relics on the four sides of the convent are hundreds in number. For brevity's sake we will recount two or three. On the western side of the saṅghārāma, at no great distance, is a vihāra. Here Tathāgata in old days stopped for three months and largely expounded the excellent law for the good of the Devas.
To the south 100 paces or so is a small stūpa. This is the place where a Bhikshu from a distant region saw Buddha. Formerly there was a Bhikshu who came from a distant region. Arriving at this spot, he met the multitude of disciples accompanying Buddha, and was affected inwardly with a feeling of reverence, and so prostrated himself on the ground, at the same time uttering a strong desire that he might obtain the position of a Chakravarttī monarch. Tathāgata having seen him, spoke to his followers thus : "That Bhikshu ought much to be pitied. The power (character) of his religious merit is deep and distant ;95 his faith is strong. If he were to seek the fruit of Buddha, not long hence he would obtain it ; but now that he has earnestly prayed to become a Chakravarttī king, he will in future ages receive this reward : as many grains of dust as there are from the spot where he has thrown himself on the earth down to the very middle of the gold wheel,96 so many Chakravarttī kings will there be for reward ;97 but having fixed his mind on earthly joys, the fruit of holiness is far off.98
95 This Is the literal meaning of the symbols. Julien translates, "he has a profound virtue." It may mean that his religious merit, though deep, will have but a distant reward.
96 I.e., to the middle of the earth where the gold wheel is.
97 I.e., so many times will he be a Chakravarttī king.
98 This seems to explain the words "deep and distant." See above n. 95.
On this southern side is a standing figure of Kwan-tsz'-tsai (Avalokiteśvara) Bodhisattva. Sometimes he is seen holding a vessel of perfume going to the vihāra of Buddha and turning round to the right. [S. 173]
To the south of this statue is a stūpa, in which are remains of Buddha's hair and nails cut during three months. Those persons afflicted with children's complaints,99 coming here and turning round religiously, are mostly healed.
99 Or it may be translated, "those afflicted with complicated diseases." The symbol ying means either "a babe" or "to add or increase."
To the west of this, outside the wall, and by the side of a tank, is a stūpa. This is where a heretic, holding a sparrow in his hand, asked Buddha questions relating to death and birth.
To the south-east about 50 paces, within the walls, is an extraordinary tree, about eight or nine feet in height, of which the trunk is twofold. When Tathāgata of old time was in the world, he flung his tooth-cleaner (dantakāshṭha) on the ground here, where it took root. Although many months and years have elapsed since then, the tree neither decreases nor increases.100
100 After having used the danta-kāshṭha for cleaning the teeth, it was usual to divide it into two parts, hence the double trunk of the tree (compare Julien in loc., n. 1). The dantakāshṭha in the original is "chewing-willow-twig." The wood used in India is the Acacia catechu; see ante, vol. i. p. 68 n. ; and Julien's note, tome I., p. 55.
Next to the east there is a great vihāra about 200 feet in height. Here Tathāgata, residing for four months, explained various excellent laws.
After this, to the north 100 paces or so, is a vihāra in which is a figure of Kwan-tsz'-tsai Bodhisattva. The disciples of pure faith, who offer their religious gifts, do not all see the place he occupies alike; it is not fixed.101 Sometimes he (i.e., the figure) seems to be standing by the side of the door; sometimes he goes out in front of the eaves. Religious people, both clerics and laics, from all parts come together in numbers to offer their gifts.
101 Or, "do not all see what they see alike. The place he occupies is not fixed."
To the north of this vihāra is a great vihāra, in height about 300 feet, which was built by Balāditya-rāja (Po-lo-'o-tie-to-wang). With respect to its magnificence, [S. 174] its dimensions, and the statue of Buddha placed in it, it resembles (is the same as) the great vihāra built under the Bodhi tree.102
102 This is the great vihāra supposed to have been built by Amara-deva. With respect to this and the whole subject, the controversies and theories respecting its date, see Dr. Rajendralāl Mitra's work on the stūpa at Buddha Gayā.
To the north-east of this is a stūpa. Here Tathāgata in days gone by explained the excellent law for seven days. To the north-west is a place where the four past Buddhas sat down.
To the south of this is a vihāra of brass103 built by Śīlāditya-rāja. Although it is not yet finished, yet its intended measurement, when finished (to plan}, will be 100 feet.104
103 Yu-shih, "calamine stone, used in the formation of brass" (Medhurst). There is much confusion in the use of the symbols tcou shi and yu shi. The former is explained by Medhurst (sub voc. t'how) "as a kind of stone resembling metal, which the Chinese call the finest kind of native copper. It is found in the Posse country and resembles gold. On the application of fire it assumes a red colour, and does not turn black." But yu shi (which seems to be intended in the passage in the text,
although Julien renders it thcou chi) is explained by Medhurst (sub voc. shih) to be "calamine stone, used in the formation of brass." The calamine stone is the cadmia of Pliny — "fit et e lapide ceroso, quem vocant cadmiam " (vol. ii. cap. xxxiv. § 2). Cadmus is fabled to have discovered its use in the composition of brass, and hence the name. It may be called calamine from its place of exportation, Calamina, at the mouth of the Indus; hence the Chinese say it comes from Po-sse. Brass being capable of being rolled into thin sheets (latten or Dutch metal), might easily be used in covering the walls of a building. It was so used probably by Siladitya in the case under notice.
104 Not in height, but in length.
Next to the eastward 200 paces or so, outside the walls, is a figure of Buddha standing upright and made of copper. Its height is about So feet. A pavilion of six stages is required to cover it. It was formerly made by Pūrṇavarma-rāja (Mwan-cheu).
To the north of this statue 2 or 3 li [里], in a vihāra constructed of brick, is a figure of Tāra Bodhisattva (To-lo-p'u-sa). This figure is of great height, and its spiritualappearance very striking. Every fast-day of the year large offerings are made to it. The kings and ministers and great people of the neighbouring countries offer exquisite perfumes and flowers, holding gem-covered flags [S. 175] and canopies, whilst instruments of metal and stone resound in turns, mingled with the harmony of flutes and harps. These religious assemblies last for seven days.
Within the southern gate of the wall is a large well. Formerly, when Buddha was alive, a great company of merchants parched with thirst came here to the spot where Buddha was. The Lord of the World, pointing to this place, said, "You will find water there." The chief of the merchants, piercing the earth with the end of the axle of his cart, immediately water rushed out from the ground. Having drunk and heard the law, they all obtained the fruit of holiness.
Going south-west 8 or 9 li [里] from the saṅghārāma, we come to the village of Kulika (Kiu-li-kia). In it is a stūpa built by Aśoka-rāja. This is where the venerable Mudgalaputra (Mo-te-kia-lo-tseu) was born. By the side of the village is a stūpa. This is where the Venerable One reached complete Nirvāṇa,105 and in it are placed the remains of his bequeathed body. The venerable (Mahāmudgalaputra) was of a great Brāhmaṇ family, and was an intimate friend of Śāriputra when they were young. This Śāriputra was renowned for the clearness of his dialectic skill ; the other for his persevering and deep penetration. Their gifts and wisdom were alike, and moving or standing they were always together.106 Their aims and desires from beginning to end were just the same. They had together left the world from distaste to its pleasures and as hermits had followed Sañjaya (Shen-she-ye) as their master.107 Śāriputra having met Aśvajita (Ma-shing) the Arhat, hearing the law, understood its holy (meaning).108 On returning he repeated what he had [S. 176] eard for the sake of the venerable (Mudgalaputra). On this he understood the meaning of the law and reached the first fruit.109 Then with 250 followers he went to the place where Buddha was. The Lord of the World, seeing him at a distance, pointing him out, said to his disciples, "That one coming here will be the first among my followers in the exercise of spiritual faculties (miraculous powers)." Having reached the place where Buddha was, he requested to enter the law (the society). The Lord replying, said, "Welcome, Bhikshu ; carefully practise a pure life, and you shall escape the limits of sorrow." Hearing this his hair fell off, and his common robes were changed into others. Observing in their purity the sections of the rules of moral discipline, and being in his exterior behaviour faultless, after seven days, getting rid of all the bonds of sin, he reached the condition of an Arhat and the supernatural powers.
105 Literally, Nirvāṇa "without remains" (anupadisesa). For the meaning of this phrase consult Childers, Pali Dict, sub voc Nibbānam. Julien renders it Parinirvāṇa.
106 For an account of these two disciples, see Fo-sho-king, varga 17. They are called Seriyut and Mugalan in Pali,—Hardy, Manual of Budhism, p. 181.
107 "There was at this time in Rājagaha a famous paribrajika called Saṅga. To him they (Seriyut and Mugalan) went, and they remained with him some time."—Manual of Budhism, p. 195.
108 Or, understood the holy one, i.e., Aśvajita.
109 I.e., became a Śrotāpanna.
East of the old village of Mudgalaputra, going 3 or 4 li [里], we come to a stūpa. This is the place where Bimbisāra-rāja went to have an interview with Buddha. When Tathāgata first obtained the fruit of a Buddha, knowing that the hearts of the people of the Magadha were waiting for him athirst, he accepted the invitation of Bimbisāra-rāja, and early in the morning, putting on his robes, he took his begging-dish, and with a thousand Bhikshus around him, on the right hand and the left (he advanced). In front and behind these there were a number of aged Brāhmans who went with twisted hair (jālina), and being desirous of the law, wore their dyed garments (chīvara). Followed by such a throng, he entered the city of Rājagṛiha.
Then Lord Śakra (Ti-shih), king of Devas, changing his appearance into that of a Mānava (Ma-na-p'o) youth,110 with a crown upon his head and his hair bound up, in his left hand holding a golden pitcher and in his right a precious staff, he walked above the earth four fingers [S. 177] high, leading Buddha along the road in front, in the midst of the vast assembly. Then the king of the Magadha country, Bimbisāra (Pin-pi-so-lo) by name, accompanied by all the Brāhmaṇ householders within the land, and the merchants (ku-sse), 100,000 myriads in all, going before and behind, leading and following, proceeded from the city of Rājagṛiha to meet and escort the holy congregation.
110 That is, a young Brāhmaṇ.
South-east from the spot where Bimbisāra-rāja met Buddha, at a distance of about 20 li [里], we come to the town of Kālapināka (Kia-lo-pi-na-kia). In this town is a stūpa which was built by Aśoka-rāja. This is the place where Śāriputra, the venerable one, was born. The well111 of the place still exists. By the side of the place112 is a stūpa. This is where the venerable one obtained Nirvāṇa ; the relics of his body, therefore, are enshrined therein. He also was of a high Brāhmaṇ family. His father was a man of great learning and erudition ; he penetrated thoroughly the most intricate questions. There were no books he had not thoroughly investigated. His wife had a dream and told it to her husband. "Last night," said she, "during my sleep my dreams were troubled by a strange man113 whose body was covered with armour ; in his hand he held a diamond mace with which he broke the mountains ; departing, he stood at the foot of one particular mountain." "This dream," the husband said, "is extremely good. You will bear a son of deep learning; he will be honoured in the world, and will attack the treatises of all the masters and break down their teaching (schools). Being led to consider, he will become the disciple of one who is more than human."114 [S. 178]
111 This may also mean "the stone foundation."
112 Julien says, "by the side of the well." But refer to the account of Mudgalaputra's birthplace. The original is "the well of the village," not "of the house."
113 By intercourse with a strange man.
114 This is an obscure sentence, but it seems to correspond with the dream of the man standing at the foot of a mountain. Buddha is constantly spoken of as "a mountain of gold ; and the expression puh ju yih jin, "not as one man," seems to allude, to the superhuman character of Śāriputra's future teacher. On the other hand, Julien translates it, "there will not be a greater honour for a man than to become his disciple;" or, "nothing will be considered so great an honour to a man as to become his disciple," and this perhaps is the meaning of the passage.
And so in due course she conceived a child. All at once she was greatly enlightened. She discoursed in high and powerful language, and her words were not to be overthrown. When the venerable one began to be eight years old, his reputation was spread in every direction. His natural disposition was pure and simple, his heart loving and compassionate. He broke through all impediments in his way, and perfected his wisdom. He formed a friendship when young with Mudgalaputra, and being deeply disgusted with the world, and having no system to adopt as a refuge, he went with Mudgalaputra to the heretic Sañjaya's abode, and practised (his mode of salvation). Then they said together, "This is not the system of final deliverance,115 nor is it able to rescue us from the trammels of sorrow. Let us each seek for an illustrious guide. He who first obtains sweet dew,116 let him make the taste common to the other."117
115 "The highest" or "absolute truth."
116 That is, "the water of immortality ;" the doctrine of Buddha.
117 I.e., let him communicate the knowledge of that system of salvation (sweet dew).
At this time the great Arhat Aśvajita, holding in his hand his proper measure bowl (pātra), was entering the city begging for food.
Śāriputra seeing his dignified exterior and his quiet and becoming manner, forthwith asked him, "Who is your master ?" He answered, "The prince of the Śākya tribe, disgusted with the world, becoming a hermit, has reached perfect wisdom. This one is my master." Śāriputra added, "And what doctrine does he teach ? May I find a way to hear it ?" He said, "I have but just received instruction, and have not yet penetrated the deep doctrine." Śāriputra said, "Pray tell me (repeat) what you have heard." Then Aśvajita, so far as he could, explained it and spoke. Śāriputra having heard it, immediately [S. 179] reached the first fruit, and went forthwith with 250 of his followers, to the place where Buddha was dwelling.
The Lord of the World, seeing him afar off, pointing to him and addressing his followers, said, "Yonder comes one who will be most distinguished for wisdom among my disciples." Having reached the place, he bent his head ill worship and asked to be permitted to follow the teaching of Buddha. The Lord said to him, "Welcome, Bhikshu."
Having heard these words, he was forthwith ordained.118 Half a month after, hearing Buddha preach the law on account of a Brāhmaṇ119 called "Long-nails" (Dīrghanakha), together with other discourses,120 and understanding them with a lively emotion, he obtained the fruit of an Arhat. After this, Ānanda hearing Buddha speak about his Nirvāṇa, it was noised abroad and talked about (by the disciples). Each one was affected with grief. Śāriputra was doubly touched with sorrow, and could not endure the thought of seeing Buddha die. Accordingly, he asked the Lord that he might die first. The lord said, "Take advantage of your opportunity."
118 Admitted to undertake the duties of the moral code of discipline.
119 This Brāhmaṇ or Brahmachārin (ch'ang-chao-fan-chi) is well known, as there is a work called Dīrghanakha parirvrājaka paripṛichchha (Jul. note in loc.)
120 Or, the end of the discourse; but the symbol chu generally means "the rest."
He then bade adieu to the disciples and came to his native village. His followers, the Śrāmaṇeras, spread the news everywhere through the towns and villages. Ajatasatru-rāja and his people hastened together as the wind, and assembled in clouds to the assembly, whilst Śāriputra repeated at large the teaching of the law. Having heard it, they went away. In the middle of the following night, with fixed (correct) thought, and mind restrained, he entered the Samādhi called "final extinction." After awhile, having risen out of it, he died. [S. 180]
Four or five li [里] to the south-east of the town Kālapināka121 is a stūpa. This is the spot where a disciple of Śāriputra reached Nirvāṇa. It is otherwise said, "When Kāśyapa Buddha was in the world, then three koṭis of great Arhats entered the condition of complete Nirvāṇa in this place."
121 For some remarks on Kālapināka, see Fa-hian (Beat's edition), p. 111, n. 2.
Going 30 li [里] or so to the east of this last-named stūpa, we come to Indraśailagūha mountain (In-t'o-lo-shi-lo-kia-ho-shan).122 The precipices and valleys of this mountain are dark and gloomy. Flowering trees grow thickly together like forests. The summit has two peaks, which rise up sharply and by themselves. On the south side of the western peak123 between the crags is a great stone house,124 wide but not high. Here Tathāgata in old time was stopping when Śakra, king of Devas, wrote on the stone matters relating to forty-two doubts which he had, and asked Buddha respecting them.125
122 "The-cavern-of-Indra mountain." The "rocky hill standing by itself," named by Fa-hian, chap. xxviii., has been identified by General Cunningham (Arch. Survey, vol. i. p. 18) with the western peak of this hill. The northern range of hills, that stretch from the neighbourhood of Gaya to the bank of the Pañchāna river, a distance of about thirty-six miles, end abruptly in two lofty peaks; the higher of the two on the west is called Giryek. This is the one referred to by Fa-hian. (See Cunningham, Arch. Survey, vol. i. pp. 16, 17, and vol. iii. p. 150.)
123 Julien has omitted the symbol for west.
124 Now called Gidha-dwar; in Sanskrit, Gṛidhradvāra, "the vulture's opening."
125 That is, at it seems, he drew certain figures or letters on the stone, and asked Buddha to explain some difficulties he had as to the subject of these figures. These forty-two difficulties have no reference to the Book of Forty-two Sections.
Then Buddha explained the matters. The traces of these figures still exist. Persons now try to imitate by comparison these ancient holy figures (figure forms).126 [S. 181] Those who enter the cave to worship are seized with a sort of religious trepidation.
126 This translation appears to me the only justifiable one. Julien has, "Now there is a statue there which resembles the ancient image of the saint (i.e., of the Buddha)." But if the symbol ts'z (this) be taken for the adverb "here," the natural translation would be: "Now there are here figures in imitation of these ancient sacred symbols or marks." The only doubt is whether ts'z siang, "these marks or figures," or "the figures here," be not an error for "Fo-siang," "the figure of Buddha," which occurs a little farther on.
On the top of the mountain ridge are traces where the four former Buddhas sat and walked, still remaining. On the top of the eastern peak is a saṅghārāma; the common account is this : when the priests who dwell here look across in the middle of the night at the western peak, where the stone chamber is, they see before the image of Buddha lamps and torches constantly burning.
Before the sahghardma on the eastern peak of the Indraśailagūha mountain is a stūpa which is called Haṃsa (Keng-sha).127 Formerly the priests of this saṅghārāma studied the doctrine of the Little Vehicle, that is, the Little Vehicle of the "gradual doctrine."128 They allowed therefore the use of the three pure articles of food, and they followed this rule without fail. Now afterwards, when it was not time to seek for the three pure articles of food, there was a Bhikshu who was walking up and down ; suddenly he saw a flock of wild geese flying over him in the air. Then he said in a jocose way, "To-day the congregation of priests has not food sufficient, Mahāsattvas ! now is your opportunity." No sooner had he finished, than a goose, stopping its flight, fell down before the priest and died. The Bhikshu having seen this, told it to the priests, who, hearing it, were affected with pity, and said one to the other, "Tathāgata framed his law as a guide and encouragement [S. 182] (suitable to) the powers (springs] of each person ;129 now we, following 'the gradual doctrine,' are using a foolish guide. The Great Vehicle is the true doctrine. We ought to change our former practice, and follow more closely the sacred directions. This goose falling down is, in truth, a true lesson for us, and we ought to make known its virtue by handing down the story to other ages, the most distant." On this they built a stūpa to hand down to future ages the action they had witnessed, and they buried the dead goose bsneath it.
127 Keng-so-kia-lan, in Chinese Keng-sha. The lower peak on the east is crowned with a solid tower of brickwork, well known as Jāra-sandha-ka-baithak, or "Jārasandha's throne." This tower, the ruins of which still exist, is probably the stūpa alluded to in the text (comp. Cunningham, Arch. Survey, i. 19). But I am at a loss how to explain General Cunningham's remark (Arch. Survey iii. 141), that "close to the hot springs on the north-east slope of the Baibhār hill there is a massive foundation of a stone house 83 feet square, called Jāra-sandha-ka-baithak, or "Jārasandha's throne." This is explained, however, in Fergusson and Burgess' Cave Temples of India, by the statement that there are two sites so named.
128 The advanced doctrine of the Little Vehicle (Hīnayāna) ; compare Julien's note, tome i. p. 3.
129 I.e., Buddha's law was intended to be adapted to circumstances.
Going 150 or 160 li [里] to the north-east of the Indraśila-gūha mountain, we come to the Kapotika (pigeon) convent.130 There are about 200 priests, who study the principles of the Sarvāstivāda school of Buddhism.
130 This Kapotika (pigeon) convent is identified by General Cunningham with the village of Pārbati, just 10 miles to the north-east of Giriyek. This would require us to change the 150 or 160 li of Hiuen Tsiang into 50 or 60.
To the east is a stūpa which was built by Aśoka-rāja. Formerly Buddha residing in this place, declared the law for one night to the great congregation. At this time there was a bird-catcher who was laying his snares for the feathered tribe in this wood. Having caught nothing for a whole day, he spoke thus, "My bad luck to-day -is owing to a trick somewhere." Therefore he came to the place where Buddha was, and said in a high voice, "Your speaking the law to-day, Tathāgata, has caused me to catch nothing in all my nets. My wife and my children at home are hungry; what expedient shall I try to help them ?" Then Tathāgata replied, "If you will light a fire, I will give you something to eat."
Then Tathāgata made to appear a large dove, which fell in the fire and died. Then the bird-catcher taking it, carried it to his wife and children, and they ate it [S. 183] together. Then he went back to the place where Buddha was, on which, by the use of expedients, he framed his discourse so as to convert the bird-catcher. Having heard the discourse, he repented of his fault and was renewed in heart. Then he left his home, and practising wisdom, reached the holy fruit, and because of this the saṅghārāma was called Kapotika.
To the south of this 2 or 3 li [里] we come to a solitary hill,131 which is of great height, and covered with forests and jungle. Celebrated flowers and pure fountains of water cover its sides and flow through its hollows. On this hill are many vihāras and religious shrines, sculptured with the highest art. In the exact middle of the vihāra is a figure of Kwan-tsz'-tsai Bodhisattva. Although it is of small size, yet its spiritual appearance is of an affecting character. In its hand it holds a lotus flower ; on its head is a figure of Buddha.
131 This solitary hill is supposed to be "the hill standing by itself," named by Fa-hian (Cunningham, Reports, vol. xv. p. 7). Dr. Fergus-son, on the other hand, identifies the bill of Behar with that site (J. R. A. S. N.S., vol. vi. p. 229), and this hill with the Shekhpura range (ibid,, p. 232).
There are always a number of persons here who abstain from food desiring to obtain a view of the Bodhisattva. For seven days, and fourteen days, and even for a whole month (do they fast). Those who are properly affected see this Kwan-tsz'-tsai Bodhisattva with its beautiful132 marks, and thoroughly adorned with all its majesty and glory. It comes forth from the middle of the statue, and addresses kind words to these men.
132 One form of the worship of Kwan-yin will probably be found to have been derived from the Persian Anaitis or Anāhita; the descriptions given of each are too similar to be attributed to accident. Especially on this point of "beauty" compare Sacred Books of the East, vol. xxiii. p. 82; also Bunyiu Nanjio, Catalogue of Jap. and Chin. Books lately added to the Bodleian, col. 7, to show that Kwan-yin is identified with "pure water." Note also Edkin's Chinese Buddhism, p. 262, "Kwan-yin from beyond the sea." The description of Anāhita's dress in the Abān Yasht(S.B.E., vol. xxiii.),§§ 126-131, corresponds with the representations in the Liturgy of Kwan-yin. The subject is too copious for a note.
In old days the king of the Siṃhala country, in the [S. 184] early morning reflecting his face in a mirror, was not able to see himself, but he saw in the middle of a Tāla wood, on the top of a little mountain in the Magadha country of Jambudvīpa, a figure of this Bodhisattva. The king, deeply affected at the benevolent appearance of the figure, diligently searched after it. Having come to this mountain,133 he found in fact a figure resembling the one he had seen. On this he built a vihāra and offered to it religious gifts. After this the king still recollecting the fame of the circumstance, according to his example, built vihāras and spiritual shrines. Flowers and incense with the sound of music are constantly offered here.
133 The worship of Kwan-yin as a mountain deity has been alluded to in the J. R. A. S., N.S., vol. xv. pp. 333 f. I would remark here that it seems the worship of this deity was partly connected with Ceylon. The argument of the paper in the J. R. A. S. is to the same purport.
Going south-east from this shrine on the solitary mountain about 40 li [里], we come to a convent with about fifty priests,134 who study the teaching of the Little Vehicle. Before the saṅghārāma is a great stūpa, where many miracles are displayed. Here Buddha in former days preached for Brahma-deva's sake and others during seven days. By the side of it are traces where the three Buddhas of the past age sat and walked. To the north-east of the saṅghārāma about 70 li [里], on the south side of the Ganges river, we come to a large village, thickly populated.135 There are many Deva temples here, all of them admirably adorned.
134 General Cunningham suggests the substitution of four li for forty. In that case the place indicated would be Aphsar (see Arch. Survey, vol. xv. p. 10).
135 Both distance and direction point to the vicinity of Shekhpura (op. cit. p. 13).
136 Identified by Cunningham with Rajjāna. In Gladwin's Ayin-Akbari it is found under the form "Rowbenny," which closely resembles the Chinese. Julien proposes Rohinīla doubtfully. See also Fergusson (op. cit), p. 233.
Not far to the south-east is a great stūpa. Here Buddha for a night preached the law. Going east from this we enter the desert mountains ; and going 100 li [里] or so, we come to the convent of the village of Lo-in-ni-lo.136 Before this is a great stūpa which was built by Aśoka-rāja. [S. 185] Here Buddha formerly preached the law for three months. To the north of this 2 or 3 li [里] is a large tank about 30 li [里] round. During the four seasons of the year a lotus of each of the four colours opens its petals.
Going east we enter a great forest wild, and after 200 li [里] or so we come to the country of I-lan-na-po-fa-to (Hiraṇyaparvata).