[389. {392.}1 Sela2]

In the city, Haṃsavatī,
I was in charge of the roadways.3
Calling my kinsfolk together,
I spoke these words [to them back then]: (1) [3581]

“The Buddha’s4 been born in the world,
the Unsurpassed Field of Merit,
the Foundation for Every World,5
Sacrificial Recipient. (2) [3582]

The kṣatriyans and city folk,
the rich people and the brahmins,
happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts,
have6 formed themselves into a guild.7 (3) [3583]

Those on elephants,8 royal guards,9
charioteers10 and foot-soldiers11
happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts,
have12 formed themselves into a guild.13 (4) [3584]

The mighty lords14 and the princes,15
Vaiśyas as well as the brahmins,
happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts,
have16 formed themselves into a guild.17 (5) [3585]

The cooks18 [and] those who dress the hair,19
the bath boys,20 the garland-makers,21
happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts,
have22 formed themselves into a guild.23 (6) [3586]

The dyers,24 also the weavers,25
the tanners,26 also the bath girls,27
happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts,
have28 formed themselves into a guild.29 (7) [3587]

The fletchers,30 the leather workers,31
carpenters32 and workers in gold,33
tinsmiths,34 also [makers of] mats,35
have36 formed themselves into a guild.37 (8) [3588-3589]38
Hired servants39 [and] musicians,40
and numerous slaves and servants,41
to the extent of their own strength,42
have43 formed themselves into a guild.44 (9) [3590]

Water-bringers,45 wood-gatherers,46
tillers,47 also grass-carriers,48
to the extent of their own strength,49
have50 formed themselves into a guild.51 (10) [3591]

Florists52 and gardeners53 as well,
green-grocers54 [and] fruit-carriers,55
to the extent of their own strength56
have57 formed themselves into a guild.58 (11) [3592]

Harlots,59 slave-girls who bring water,60
women who sell cakes [or] sell fish,61
to the extent of their own strength,62
have63 formed themselves into a guild.64 (12) [3593]

Come65 you all, gathered together,
let us [too] form, as one, a group;66
let us [now] perform service67 for
the Unsurpassed Field of Merit.” (13) [3594]

They, having listened to my words,
formed a group [to last] for all time
[and] built68 a well-built meeting-hall69
for [those in] the monks' Assembly.70 (14) [3595]

After dedicating that hall,
elated71 with a happy mind,72
surrounded by all of those [folks,]
I went up to the Sambuddha. (15) [3596]

Having approached the Sambuddha,
the Lord of the World, Bull of Men,
[and] worshipping the Teacher’s feet,
I spoke these words [to him back then]: (16) [3597]

“These three hundred people, Hero,
[together] as one [in] a group,
have appointed for you, O Sage,
this well-constructed meeting-hall.” (17) [3598]

The Eyeful One, accepting [it]
in front of the monks’ Assembly,73
[the Buddha] spoke these verses [then],
in front of my three hundred [folks]: (18) [3599]

“Three hundred and this best one74 too,
conforming75 [together] as one,
having made this [great] achievement,76
you all are going to enjoy [it]. (19) [3600]

When [your] last rebirth is attained,
you all will achieve nirvana,
the state of coolness, unsurpassed,77
unborn, undying peacefulness.” (20) [3601]

The Buddha prophesied like that,78
the Omniscient One,79 Best of Monks,80
[and] having heard the Buddha’s words,
I declared [my own] mental bliss.81 (21) [3602]

For thirty thousand aeons I
delighted in the world of gods.
Five hundred times the lord of gods,
I exercised divine rule [there]. (22) [3603]

One thousand times I [also] was
a king who turns the wheel [of law].
While exercising divine rule
the great gods [all then] worshipped [me]. (23) [3604]

Here, in this human kingdom,82 [my]
relatives are my retinue.83
When [my] last rebirth was attained
there was a brahmin, Vāseṭṭha,84
with eight hundred million in wealth;85
I was [born as] the son of him.
My [given] name [at birth] was “Sela,”
a master of Vedic science.86 (24-25) [3605-3606]

I, wandering about on foot,87
waited on88 by [my] own students,
saw89 Keniya90 the ascetic
with matted hair, wearing ashes,91
prepared to do a sacrifice.92
[Having seen him] I spoke these words:
“Bringing a wife? Going to one?93
Or have you invited the king?94 (26-27) [3607-3608]

I want to do sacrifices95
for brahmins who think like the gods,96
[but] I’m not invited by kings
[and] have not found a sacrifice.” (28) [3609]

“There is no bringing brides for me;
I do not go to brides [either].
The one I’ve invited today
is Best in the world with [its] gods,
the Delighter of the Śākyans
who Brings Happiness to Beings97
out of Friendship for All Creatures;98
these preparations are for him. (29-30) [3610-3611]

The Bright Hue of Wild Mangosteen,99
Incomparable, Unmeasurable,
the Buddha, Unrivaled in Form,
is invited for tomorrow. (31) [3612]

Like beaten100 [gold] atop a forge101
[burning bright] like cedar charcoal,102
the Great Hero’s like lightening bolts103
I’ve invited him, the Buddha.104 (32) [3613]

Like fire [burning] on a mountain,
like the moon on the fifteenth day,105
the same color as burning reeds —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (33) [3614]

Fearless, Overcomer of Fear,106
the Existence-Ender,107 the Sage,
The Great Hero’s like a lion —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (34) [3615]

Skillful in the Buddha’s Teaching,
little to endure from others,
Great Hero’s like an elephant —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (35) [3616]

Skilled in doing the Great Teaching,108
the Unmatched,109 Buddha-elephant,
the Great Hero is like a bull —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (36) [3617]

Of Endless Beauty,110 Boundless Fame,
Bearing all the Various Marks,
the Great Hero is like Indra111
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (37) [3618]

Strong One,112 Whose Group is Powerful,113
Majestic One,114 Hard to Approach,115
The Great Hero is like Brahmā116
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (38) [3619]

Teaching-Reacher,117 Ten-Powered One,118
Master of Surpassing Power,119
the Great Hero is like the earth —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (39) [3620]

Full of waves [called] morality,
churning knowledge of the Teaching,
the Great Hero is like the sea —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (40) [3621]

Hard to Approach,120 Hard to Subdue,121
Unshaken,122 Risen Up,123 Lofty,124
the Great Hero’s like Mt. Meru125
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (41) [3622]

Of Endless Knowledge, Impartial,126
Unmeasurable,127 Gone to the Top,128
the Great Hero is like the sky —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (42) [3623]

Support129 for Those with Fears [and] Frights,
Protection130 for Refuge-Seekers,131
the Great Hero Provides Comfort132
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (43) [3624]

The Abode133 of Wisdom and Spells,134
Merit-Field for happiness-Seekers135
the Great Hero, the Mine of Gems —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (44) [3625]

Comforter,136 the Awe-Inspirer,137
Giver of the Fruit of Monkhood,
the Great Hero is like a cloud138
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (45) [3626]

The Eye of the World,139 the Hero,140
Dispeller of Every Darkness,141
the Great Hero is like the sun —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (46) [3627]

Sage, Seer of the Nature142 of
Emancipations from Objects,143
the Great Hero is like the moon —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (47) [3628]

Venerable,144 Raised up in the World,
Adorned with the Auspicious Marks,
Unmeasurable, the Great Sage —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. [3629]145

The One Whose Knowledge is Boundless,146
Morality beyond Compare,147
whose freedom has no parallel,148
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (48) [3630]

Whose courage149 has no parallel,
whose firmness is unthinkable,150
he whose exertion is the best —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (49) [3631]

Passion, hatred, stupidity
and every poison is destroyed;
the Great Hero is like a drug151
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (50) [3632]

There’s removal of the darkness
of all pain, defilement, disease;
the Great Hero’s like a doctor —
I’ve invited him, the Buddha. (51) [3633]

“Friend, this sound is hard to obtain,
which has been said [here], “the Buddha”.
Hearing “the Buddha,” “the Buddha,”
you all should be joyful like me.”152 (52) [3634]

Not keeping my joy inside [me]
it poured forth [to those] outside [me].
I, being [full of] joyful thoughts,153
spoke these words [to him at that time]: (53) [3635]

“Well then where is that Blessed One,
the World’s Best One, the Bull of Men?
Having gone where will I see [this]
Giver of the Fruit of Monkhood?” (54) [3636]

[He,] taking hold of [my] right arm,154
thrilled, with [his] hands pressed together,
showed to me the King of Teachings,155
who Removes the Arrows of Grief. (55) [3637]

“Do you see156 this massive forest,
risen up like a great storm cloud,
dark blue just like collyrium,
as visible as the ocean?157 (56) [3638]

The Buddha [now] is dwelling there,
the Untamed-Tamer,158 the [Great] Sage,
instructing those who can be trained,
making known Awakening’s parts.”159 (57) [3639]

Like the thirsty [seeking] water,
like the hungry [looking for] food,
like a cow greedy for [its] calf,
I went in search of the Victor. (58) [3640]

Knowing manners and good conduct160
I did teach to my own students
going into Buddha’s presence,
restraint in line with the Teaching:161 (59) [3641]

‘Blessed Ones are Hard to Approach,
like lions wandering alone,
walking carefully, step by step,162
come [along after me], O men. (60) [3642]

As fearful as a snake’s venom,
like a lion, king of the beasts,
like a rutting tusked elephant,
thus Buddhas are Hard to Approach. (61) [3643]

O men, neglecting [any need]
[that you may have] to cough or sneeze,
walking carefully, step by step,163
go into the Buddha’s presence. (62) [3644]

Buddhas are Hard to Go Up To,164
they’re Ones who Relish Solitude,
make Little Sound,165 Hard to Approach,
Revered [in the world] with its gods. (63) [3645]

When166 I am asking [him] questions,
or exchanging friendly greetings,
then you all should make little sound;
stand [there] as though [you were] sages.167 (64) [3646]

Which Great Teaching he is preaching,168
peaceful, leading to nirvana,
listen to the meaning with care,169
happily hearing the Teaching.’”170 (65) [3647]

Having approached the Sambuddha
I exchanged greetings with the Sage.
[While I was] conversing with171 him,
I looked out for [Great Man’s] marks.172 (66) [3648]

I can see thirty of the marks,
doubting only two of the marks:
through his powers173 the Sage showed me
[his] penis enclosed in a sheath.174 (67) [3649]

[And then the Buddha] placed his tongue
into [his] ear175 and on his nose.
The Victor touched [his] forehead’s tip176
[and] covered it all [with his tongue]. (68) [3650]

I, seeing his auspicious marks,
fulfilling [all] the attributes,
concluding177 that, “he’s a Buddha,”
I went forth with [all] my students. (69) [3651]

I went forth into homelessness,
together with the three hundred.
When eight months [still] had not elapsed,
we all realized nirvana.178 (70) [3652]

Together179 doing [good] karma
for the Unsurpassed Merit-Field,
together we transmigrated,
together we turned [from the world]. (71) [3653]

I gave180 rafters181 [for that new hall],
remaining182 within the guild’s rule.183
Due to that deed, well done [by me],
I’m receiving eight good results.184 (72) [3654]

I’m worshipped185 in [all] directions,
and I have food that’s ambrosial;
I’m the support of everyone;186
I don’t experience187 terror.188 (73) [3655]

I don’t get [any] diseases,
and I protect [my] long life-span.
I am one with exquisite skin,
I live in dwellings [that I] choose.189 (74) [3656]

Remaining190 within the guild’s rule,191
the rafters I gave192 [numbered] eight.
Following the eighth193 [I received]
analysis194 with195 Arahantship. (75) [3657]

All accomplishments accomplished,196
duties complete,197 defilement-free,198
[I] am your son [today], Great Sage,
[and] “Eight Rafters”199 is [now my] name. (76) [3658]

Remaining200 within the guild’s rule,201
the pillars202 I gave203 [numbered] five.
Due to that deed, well done [by me],
I’m receiving five good results.204 (77) [3659]

I remain unshaken by love,205
I do not lack for possessions,206
I’m one whose words are taken well,207
[and] likewise I cause no offense.208 (78) [3660]

My mind is not out of control,209
I’m not shaken by anything,
unstained in the dispensation,210
due to that deed, well done [by me]. (79) [3661]

I’m respectful,211 obedient,212
duties complete,213 defilement-free;214
I’m your follower, Great Hero,
a venerated monk,215 O Sage. (80) [3662]

Making a well-made palanquin,
I [then] dedicated216 that hall.
Due to that deed, well done [by me],
I’m receiving five good results.217 (81) [3663]

I’m born in an eminent clan,218
I become a very rich man,219
I’m one who achieves all success,220
I am not plagued with221 avarice.222 (82) [3664]

In [whichever] village [I] wish
my palanquin comes to a rest,223
by means of that best palanquin,
I travel according to wish. (83) [3665]

Because of that palanquin-gift,
I removed all of [my] darkness.
Sage, this monk,224 empowered with all
special knowledges,225 worships you. (84) [3666]

I performed all of [my] duties
[and] the duties of others [too].226
Because of that well-done deed, I
entered the city of no fear.227 (85) [3667]

I gave food [to the Buddha and]
also [that] well-completed hall.
Due to that deed, well done [by me],
I arrived at that best of states.228 (86) [3668]

Those who are tamers in the world,
tame these elephants [and] horses.
Employing varied punishments229
they tame by means of cruelty.230 (87) [3669]

Not like that,231 O Great Hero, do
you tame men [and] women [here].
Not using force,232 without weapons,233
you tame in the supreme taming.234 (88) [3670]

Praising the virtues235 of giving,
[you are] skilled in preaching, O Sage;
addressing a single question236
you freed the three hundred, O Sage. (89) [3671]

We’re tamed by the charioteer,237
well-freed,238 undefiled,239 empowered
by all the special knowledges,
quenched240 in destroying the bases.241 (90) [3672]

In the hundred thousand aeons
since I gave that gift at that time,
every fear has been overcome:
that’s the fruit of giving a hall. (91) [3673]

My being in Buddha’s presence242
was a very good thing for me.
The three knowledges are attained;
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (92) [3674]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Like elephants with broken chains,
I am living without constraint. (93) [3675]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (94) [3676]

Thus indeed Venerable Sela Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Sela Thera is finished.

  1. Apadāna numbers provided in {fancy brackets} correspond to the BJTS edition, which contains more individual poems than does the PTS edition dictating the main numbering of this translation. Here BJTS reads 391, a typo.

  2. “Stone,” a historical monk much-mentioned in the canon and commentaries.

  3. vīthisāmi, could also be imagined as an “owner” of roads, or “master” of roads; BJTS seems to prefer the latter, glossing, “I was the foremost person on a particular road.”

  4. as v. 91 [3673], below, specifies that this occurred 100,000 aeons ago, the Buddha in question presumably would be Padumuttara Buddha.

  5. ādhāro sabbalokassa

  6. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  7. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  8. hatth’ārūḷhā, those mounted on elephants

  9. anīkaṭṭha

  10. rathikā

  11. pattikārakā

  12. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  13. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  14. uggā

  15. rājaputtā

  16. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  17. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  18. āḷārikā

  19. kappakā

  20. nahāpakā

  21. mālakārakā

  22. te, lit., “they” “they [have]”

  23. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  24. rajakā

  25. pesakārā

  26. cchammakārā

  27. nhāpikā

  28. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  29. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  30. usukārā, arrow-makers

  31. cchammikā

  32. tacchchakārā

  33. soṇṇakārā

  34. tipulopā

  35. kaṭā

  36. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  37. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  38. here, PTS and BJTS diverge. The latter presents in two verses all the material, plus some more, that appears in this one verse in PTS. BJTS [3588] reads: The fletchers, the bhamakāras (?)/leather workers and carpenters/happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts/have formed themselves into a guild.// BJTS [3589] reads: “The metal-smiths (kammāro), workers in gold/and likewise those who work in tin/happy, with pleasure in [their] hearts, have formed themselves into a guild.//” I prefer the BJTS reading here, but stick the PTS as my base text.

  39. bhatakā

  40. gītakā<gītakārā. BJTS reads cchetaka, “boy servants,” “waifs”

  41. dāsa-kammakārā bahū

  42. yathā sakena thāmena, “as far as their own power”

  43. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  44. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  45. udahārā

  46. kaṭṭhahārā

  47. kasikā, BJTS reads kassakā, “cultivators”

  48. tiṇahārā

  49. yathā sakena thāmena, “as far as their own power”

  50. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  51. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  52. pupphikā

  53. mālikā

  54. paṇṇikā, dealers in leaves

  55. phalahārikā (= females?); BJTS read phalahārakā (= males?)

  56. yathā sakena thāmena, “as far as their own power”

  57. lit., “they”, te, “they [have]”

  58. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  59. gaṇikā, “those who belong to the crowd”

  60. kumbhadāsī, lit., “slave-girls with water pots”

  61. reading pūvikā macchchakā pi ccha (lit., “women who sell cakes and also women who sell fish”) with BJTS for PTS pūvikā macchchakāyikā (“women who sell cakes and women with bodies of fish”

  62. yathā sakena thāmena, “as far as their own power”

  63. te, lit., “they” “they [have]”

  64. pūgadhammaŋ akaŋsu te, lit., “they did an act incorporating a guild”

  65. reading etha with BJTS for PTS ete, “they”

  66. gaṇaŋ

  67. adhikāraŋ karissāma

  68. kārayun, lit., “they caused to be built”

  69. upatthāna-sālā, a hall for meetings, assemblies, services of attendance on the monks.

  70. bhikkhusaṅghassa

  71. udaggo

  72. tuṭṭhamānaso

  73. bhikkhusaṅghassa purato

  74. i.e., the protagonist, acting as the ādikammika (“instigator”) of the offering; cf. Pilindavacchcha-apadāna (#388 {391}), vv. 6, 8 [3379, 3381]

  75. anuvattiŋsu

  76. sampattiŋ hi karitvāna

  77. sītibhāvam anuttaraŋ

  78. evaŋ, lit., “thusly”

  79. sabbaññu

  80. samaṇuttaro

  81. somanassaŋ pavedayin

  82. rajje

  83. parisā honti bandhavā. This presumably refers to the relatives in the previous existence, reborn with him as his political retinue.

  84. lit., “there was a brahmin named Vāseṭṭha”

  85. lit., “with eighty ten-millions (asīti-koṭi) in wealth (nicchayo, “heaped up”)”

  86. chalaṅge pāramiṇgato, lit., “one who has reached perfection in the six branches.” RD: “the set of six Vedāngas, disciplines of Vedic science, viz. 1. kappa, 2. vyākaraṇā, 3. nirutti, 4. sikkhā, 5. chando (vicchiti), 6. joti-sattha (thus enumd at VvA 265; at PvA 97 in sequence 4, 1, 3, 2, 6, 5): D iii.269; Vv 6316; Pv ii.613; Miln 178, 236.”

  87. jaṅghāvihāraŋ viccharantaŋ, lit., “wandering while living on the legs”. BJTS understands this to refer to walking back and forth (Sinh. sakman), as in walking meditation, but these terms do not necessarily imply that.

  88. or “honored”

  89. lit., “having seen,” disvā

  90. BJTS: Keṇiya. He is known in the canonical and commentarial texts, as is this meeting with Sela which resulted in the latter discovering the Buddha’s presence in Āpaṇa and subsequently converting along with the 300 who had been his relatives at the time of the original act, co-transmigrating up to and including the final result of that act, namely arahantship. See DPPN I:663-664

  91. reading jaṭā-khārika-bharitam (lit., “hair-braided [and] filled with ashes”) with BJTS for PTS jaṭābhābhārabharitaŋ, “heavy with the weight of the light of dread-locks,” but both are probably mistakes for the recurring jaṭābhārabharitaŋ (PTS) or jaṭābhārena bharitaṃ (BJTS) elsewhere in the text, translated as “bearing a weight of matted hair”

  92. paṭiyattāhutaŋ

  93. Sela asks the ascetic whether his sacrifice is being performed for a wedding, whether because he is bringing a bride to live in his own house (āvāho) or going to live in the house of a bride (vivāho).

  94. lit., “has the king been invited by you?”. The brahmin wonders whether the sacrifice is being performed for the king, as an alternative to performing it for a wedding.

  95. āhutī-yiṭṭhu-kāmo, lit., “I am one with the desire to sacrifice (yiṭṭhu[m] = infinitive of yajati) sacrifices (or oblations: āhutī)” or “to sacrifice oblations.”

  96. brāhmaṇe deva-sammate, lit., “brahmins who have the same opinions as the gods”

  97. sattasukhāvaho

  98. sabbasattahitāvaho

  99. lit., “radiant with the color of a Timbarūsaka [tree]”. The tree is diospyros embryopteris, Sinh. timbiri. The cty. specifies that the color is that of gold.

  100. pahaṭo, BJTS reads pahaṭṭho, with the same meaning.

  101. ukkāmukha°, the “mouth” (receiving or discharging end) of a furnace or forge, a goldsmith’s smelting pot.

  102. khadiraṅgārasannibha. Khadira is Sinh. kihiri, Acacia Sundra, English “red cutch” or “khayer.” The tree produces impressive spikes of yellow flowers but is known primarily for its timber and use in making charcoal.

  103. vijjūpamo

  104. lit., “he, the Buddha, is the one invited by me”

  105. i.e., when it is full, puṇṇamāse va cchandimā

  106. bhayātīto = bhaya + atīta, lit., “he in whom fear is overcome/surpassed/int he past” or “the one free of fear”

  107. bhavantakaraṇo, “he who makes an end of existence”

  108. Saddhammācchārakusalo

  109. asādiso

  110. anantavaṇṇo, could also be “unending color”

  111. sakkūpamo, “like Śakra [Indra, the king of the gods]”

  112. patāpī

  113. vasīgaṇī

  114. tejasī (BJTS reads tejassī)

  115. durāsado

  116. “God,” the creator deity, the lord of all (sahampatī)

  117. reading pattadhammo with BJTS for PTS mahantadhammo, “he who had a big Teaching”

  118. dasabalo

  119. balātibalapārago (BJTS reads °pāragū), lit., “one who has gone beyond the power-surpassing power”

  120. durāsado

  121. duppasaho

  122. acchalo

  123. uggato

  124. brahā

  125. nerūpamo, i.e., “is like the cosmic mountain.”

  126. asamasamo, “the same [even] in difference.” This epithet could be read as the grammatical negative of the compound samasama, lit., “exactly the same” or “evenly even” (or, according to Sinhala usage of the same term, “Equal”), which is also used as a Buddha-epithet above, v. 57 of #388 {391} (Pilindavacchcha-apadāna) = [3430]. Asama also means “stone,” a synonym for Sela’s own name, so we could read this as meaning “The Same as Stone,” though the relationship of that quality to the nature of the sky would then prove problematic. A better alt. reading, suggested to me by H.M. Wijerathna, is “the Same as the Unmatched Ones,” (“the same as those of whom no one is an equal”), i.e., the previous Buddhas.

  127. atulo. Pronounce as contraction “unmeas’rable to preserve meter

  128. aggataŋ gato

  129. patiṭṭhā, support, resting place

  130. tāṇo

  131. saraṇagāminaŋ, of those going for refuge

  132. assāssako

  133. āsayo

  134. buddhi-mantānaŋ (intelligence and mantras)

  135. happiness need to be contracted “happ’ness” in recitation, to preserve meter.

  136. assāsaka, “breathing,” “having breath,” by extension “breathing easily,” or “he who makes others breath easily”. I follow BJTS Sinhala gloss in thus translating the epithet (Sinh. äsväsillak

  137. veda-kara, “the one who makes religious feeling, religious joy, enthusiasm, emotion.” Veda is a wide-ranging term derived from *vid (hence also “knowledge,” “science,” cf. vijjā), and of course designates the revealed poetry of the brahmins. In that latter context (whereby we could read the term, “Doer of the Veda” or even Maker of the Veda,” another possible meaning) , the literal meaning of assāsaka (see previous note) is especially interesting, for “Breathing” or even “the Breath” similarly evokes a theme very dear to Brahmanical thought and scripture.

  138. meghūpamo, especially a storm-cloud

  139. reading lokacchakkhu with BJTS for PTS loke samussito (“elevated in the world,” also a reasonable epithet for both the Buddha and the sun)

  140. vīro

  141. reading sabbatamavinodano with BJTS for PTS sabbantamavinodano

  142. reading sabhāva-dassano with BJTS for PTS sabhāva rasako, “the Original Taste”

  143. ārammaṇa-vimuttīsu, the (multiple) forms of release from the objects of the world and of the senses, including mental objects

  144. contract to “ven’rable” for recitation, to keep the meter

  145. this verse does not appear in PTS. BJTS reads: Vuddho samussito loke/lakkhaṇehi alaṅkato/appameyyo mahāvīro/*so me Buddho nimantito//

  146. Yassa ñāṇam appameyyaŋ, lit., “of whom knowledge is without end/limit/measure”

  147. sīlaŋ yassa anūpamaŋ, lit., “the morality of whom is without comparison/metaphor”

  148. vimutti asadisā

  149. BJTS (and PTS alt., diti [sic?]) reading yassa dhiti (‘whose energy/steadfastness/courage”) for PTS yassa pīti (whose joy”), also a likable epithet for both the Buddha

  150. thāmo yas”sa acchintiyo

  151. reading agadūpama, “like a medicine” with BJTS for PTS agarūpama (“like [something which is] not heavy”?)

  152. lit., “you all should produce joy with me: BJTS gloss prefers to read the me as modifying the saying of “Buddha,” i.e., “my saying of…” I take it, instead, as an instrumental connected with the second person plural imperative, a subtle reminder that though Sela is addressed as a singular “you” in the first two feet of this verse, he is surrounded by a large group of three hundred followers. The meaning could also be “you all should produce joy for me”.

  153. pītimato santo

  154. paggayha dakkhiṇaŋ bāhuŋ

  155. dhhamarājaŋ

  156. reading passas’ etaṃ with BJTS for passass’ etaŋ

  157. sāgaraŋ viya dissantaŋ

  158. adantadamako could mean either “tamer of the untamed” or “tamer who is untamed;” I leave the ambiguity open with the hyphen, admitting here my preference for “tamer of the untamed” (which is also the BJTS reading, cf RD on dametar), and recommend pronunciation in chanting which through stress on the first term in the compound, and tone, can emphasize that the Buddha is one who tames those who are untamed/feral.

  159. bodhento bodhapakkhiye, which BJTS glosses as the (37) aspects or qualities of Awakening or Enlightenment (bodha, here = bodhi, see RD s.v.)

  160. ācchāra-upacchāraññū

  161. dhammanucchchavasaŋvaraŋ (BJTS reads dhammanucchchavi°)

  162. pade padaŋ nikkhipantā, lit., “carefully placing [your feet] step by step”

  163. pade padaŋ nikkhipantā, lit., “carefully placing [your feet] step by step”

  164. durūpansaṅkamā

  165. appasaddā

  166. reading yadā ‘haṃ with BJTS for PTS yāvâhaŋ, “as far as I…”

  167. munibhūtā va, i.e., silently

  168. reading deseti with BJTS for PTS desesi, “you preach”

  169. nisāmetha

  170. lit., “the Great Teaching,” saddhammasavanaŋ sukhaŋ

  171. kathaŋ vītisāretvā

  172. i.e., the thirty-two auspicious marks on the body of a mahāpurusa, which signal that he will either be a Buddha or a wheel-turning monarch.

  173. reading iddhiyā* with BJTS for PTS itthiyā (“to a woman,” sic!)*

  174. kosohitaŋ vatthaguyhaŋ, BJTS reads kosohitavatthaguyhaŋ

  175. kaṇṇasote, “on his auditory organ”

  176. reading patamasi nalāṭantaṃ with BJTS for PTS paṭtimasanalāṭaŋ taŋ

  177. niṭṭhaŋ gantvā, lit., “having gone (come) to the conclusion”

  178. sabbe patt’ amha nibbutiŋ

  179. ekato, lit., “ as one”

  180. lit., “having given”

  181. reading gopānasīyo with BJTS for PTS gopānasī

  182. reading vasī with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS vasiŋ

  183. pūgadhamme

  184. hetu, lit., causes; I follow BJTS gloss in understanding these as ānisaṃsas (Sinh. anusas aṭak labami). BJTS explains the use of hetu (which may be metri causa) as “making that good deed, [that is] that karma, the reason.” I count the eight here as: (1) worshipped everywhere, (2) ambrosial food, (3) supported by everyone, (4) no terrors, (5) no diseases, (6) long life, (7) fine skin, (8) chosen or wished-for residences.

  185. pūjito

  186. reading patiṭṭhā homi sabbesaṃ with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS patiṭṭhā bhosiŋ sabbesaŋ

  187. lit., “have,” “find”

  188. tāso

  189. āvāse patthite vase

  190. reading vasī with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS vasiŋ

  191. pūgadhamme

  192. lit., “having given”

  193. or, “in addition to those eight”

  194. paṭisambhidā, i.e., mastery of the (four) analytical modes, a mark of arahantship

  195. lit., “and”. The ccha here connects the two separate ānisaṃsas into one, referred to in the final foot with the singular pronoun etaŋ

  196. sabbavositavosāno, lit., “being one who has accomplished all accomplishments,” “being an arahant”

  197. katakiccchcho, i.e., “being an arahant”

  198. anāsavo, i.e., “being an arahant”

  199. aṭṭhagopānasī nāma

  200. reading vasī with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS vasiŋ

  201. pūgadhamme

  202. thamhāni

  203. lit., “having given”

  204. hetu, lit., causes; I follow BJTS in understanding these as ānisaṃsas (Sinh. anusas pahak labami). I count the five here as: (1) unshaken by love, (2) wealthy, (3) one whose words are taken well, causing no offense, (4) mind not out of control, unshaken, and (5) arahantship (unstained, respectful, obedient, duties complete, undefiled follower of the Buddha).

  205. acchalo homi mettāya

  206. anūnabhogavā

  207. adeyyavacchano homi

  208. na dhaŋsemi yathā ahaŋ

  209. reading abhantaṃ mānasaṃ mama with BJTS (bhanta = swerving, wavering, unsteady, used of a cart that is out of control) for PTS āgataŋ mānasaŋ mamaŋ (alt. mama), “my mind is come”. PTS also gives asantaŋ (lacking peace, disturbed) as an alternate reading, which would be preferable to āgataŋ

  210. vimalo homi sāsane

  211. sagāravo

  212. sappaṭisso

  213. katakiccchcho, i.e., “being an arahant”

  214. anāsavo, i.e., “being an arahant”

  215. bhikkhu tan vandate, lit., “a monk who is venerated”

  216. paññapes’ ahaŋ

  217. hetu, lit., causes; I follow BJTS in understanding these as ānisaṃsas (Sinh. anusas pahak labami). I count the five here as: (1) good birth, (2) great wealth, (3) all success, (4) lack of stinginess or greed, (5) magic palanquin.

  218. uccchche kule

  219. mahābhogo bhavāmi

  220. reading sabbasampattiko homi with BJTS for PTS sabbasampāttiko

  221. lit., “not found for me” “I do not know” “I do not experience”

  222. macchcheraŋ = macchchariyaŋ2

  223. upatiṭṭhati, lit., “stands [there],” “comes to stand fast”

  224. thero, “elder”

  225. sabbâbhiññā-balapatto

  226. para-kiccchchatta-kiccchchāni, “duties which are to be done by others”. I follow BJTS gloss in reading the compound accordingly; it could also be read to mean that he performed his own duties including duties involving service to others.

  227. pāvisim abhayaŋ puraŋ, that is, nirvana.

  228. Reading seṭṭhattaṃ (lit., “bestness”) with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS seṭṭhan taŋ

  229. karetvā (BJTS reads karitvā) kāraṇā nānā

  230. reading dāruṇena damenti te with BJTS for PTS dārune na damenti te, “they do not tame the cruel ones.”

  231. reading na h’evaṃ with BJTS for PTS na heva

  232. adaṇḍena

  233. asatthena

  234. uttame dame

  235. reading vaṇṇe kittento with BJTS for PTS vaṇṇaŋ kittento, “praising the virtue”

  236. reading ekapañhaṃ with BJTS for PTS ekapañhe, “single questions”

  237. sārathinā. Sārathī, coachman or charioteer, also connotes a trainer of horses, one who keeps the horses under control.

  238. suvimiuttā

  239. anāsavā

  240. nibbutā, lit., “blown out,” “cooled off,” i.e., in nirvana.

  241. upadhikkhaye, i.e., “in the destruction of the substratum of rebirth,.” Upadhi (clinging to rebirth, the reason for rebirth, the obstacle to nirvana) is classified in various lists of upadhis (plural), such as clinging, wrong views, defilements, karma, bad conduct, etc.

  242. BJTS agrees with PTS here in presenting this variant on the standard refrain verse