[390. {393.}1 Sabbakittika2]

I saw the Leader of the World, (3d) [3679]3
shining like a dinner-plate tree,4
blazing forth like a tree of lamps,
radiant like the morning star,5
like lightening in a mass of clouds, (1) [3677]

not frightened, never terrified,
like a lion, king of the beasts,
illuming the knowledge-light,6
crushing the groups of heretics,7 (2) [3678]

elevating this [entire] world,
eliminating every doubt,8
roaring9 like the king of the beasts. (3a-c) [3679a-c]10

With matted hair, wearing a hide,
lofty, strong, and powerful, I
took11 [my] robe made out of bark [and]
spread it12 at the soles of [his]13 feet. (4) [3680]

Taking a [fragrant] black creeper,14
I anointed15 the Thus-Gone-One.
After anointing the Buddha,16
I praised17 the Leader of the World: (5) [3681]

“O Great Sage, Crosser of the Flood,18
you are lifting up the [whole] world.
You are shining with knowledge-light,
[your] supreme lightening[-like] knowledge. (6) [3682]

You turn the wheel of the Teaching,
you crush the rival heretics,19
the Bull, the Winner at Meetings,20
you are shaking the [entire] world. (7) [3683]

Like the waves of the great ocean,
breaking on the edge of the shore,
every misguided view breaks up
[when it crashes]21 on your knowledge. (8) [3684]

When a net22 which has very fine
mesh has been stretched out23 in a lake,
creatures24 entangled in the net25
instantly [find themselves] oppressed. (9) [3685]

So the heretics in the world,
attached to the various sects,26
do thrash about, O Happy One,27
[entangled] in your great knowledge.28 (10) [3686]

Support29 for those caught in the flood,
you’re the Lord30 for those lacking kin,
Refuge31 for those distressed by fear,
Relief32 for those seeking freedom, (11) [3687]

the One Hero,33 the Unmatched One,34
the Heap of Compassion and Love,35
Moral One,36 Unequaled,37 Peaceful,38
Master,39 Neutral,40 the Winning Road,41 (12) [3688]

Wise One,42 Whose Delusion’s Destroyed,43
Lust-less One,44 Who Speaks the Unsaid,45
Accomplished One,46 you’ve Thrown Off Hate,47
Stainless One,48 Restrained,49 Pure One,50 (13) [3689]

Attachment-Free,51 Conceit Slain,52
Arahant,53 Three-Worlds-Surpasser,54
Limit-Free,55 Teaching-Respecter,56
Goal-Reacher,57 Whose Rule is Friendship,58 (14) [3690]

you Ferry Across59 like a ship,
Bring Relief60 like buried treasure,61
are Without Fear62 as is a lion,
Haughty63 like an elephant-king.” (15) [3691]

Having praised with [those] ten verses
Padumuttara of Great Fame,
having worshipped the Teacher’s feet,
I thereafter stood silently. (16) [3692]

Padumuttara, World-Knower,
Sacrificial Recipient,
the Teacher, standing in the monks’
Assembly, spoke these verses [then]: (17) [3693]

“He who praised my morality,
[my] knowledge, also [my] Teaching,
I shall relate details of him;
[all of] you listen to my words: (18) [3694]

For sixty thousand aeons he’ll
delight in the world of the gods.
Overcoming the other gods,
he will exercise rulership. (19) [3695]

He thereafter having gone forth,
incited by [his] wholesome roots,
will go forth in the Blessed One
Gotama’s dispensation. (20) [3696]

Going forth, having avoided
bad actions64 [done] with his body,
destroying all [his] defilements,
he’ll reach nirvana,65 undefiled.” (21) [3697]

“Just like a cloud, which thundering,
satiates this world [wanting rain],
so indeed did you, Great Hero,
satiate me [with] your thunder.” (22) [3698]

Praising morality, wisdom,
the Teaching and the World’s Leader,
I attained the ultimate peace,
nirvana, the unshaking state. (23) [3699]

So now indeed the Blessed One,
the Eyeful One, should long remain;
[people]66 should learn what [now] is known,67
and [they] should reach the deathless state.68 (24) [3700]

This is my last going around;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Knowing well all the defilements,
I [now] am living, undefiled. (25) [3701]

In the hundred thousand aeons
since I praised the Buddha [back then],
I’ve come to know no bad rebirth:
that’s the fruit of praising [Buddhas]. (26) [3702]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
All defilements are exhausted;
now there will be no more rebirth. (27) [3703]

My being in Buddha’s presence69
was a very good thing for me.
The three knowledges are attained;
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (28) [3704]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (29) [3705]

Thus indeed Venerable Sabbakittika Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Sabbakittika 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.

  2. “Every-Praiser”

  3. I have translated the final foot of (3) [3679] as the first line of this poem: “I saw the Leader of the World”. Placing the verb at the end of the string of similes works better in Pāli than it does in English, when presenting a string of descriptors as long as this one.

  4. kaṇṇikāra, kaṇikāra = Sinhala kinihiriya, Pterospermum acerifolium, produces a brilliant mass of yellow flowers; Engl. a.k.a. karnikar, bayur tree, maple-leaf bayur, caniyar (now archaic?), dinner-plate tree; Bodhi tree of Siddhattha Buddha.

  5. osadhī. RD (s.v.) points out that all we really know about this star is that it was particularly bright, leading Childers to translate it as “Venus” and others as the morning star.

  6. ñāṇālokaŋ pakāsentaŋ

  7. maddantaŋ titthiye gaṇe

  8. chindantaŋ, sabbasaŋsayaŋ, lit., “cutting off all doubt”

  9. reading gajjantaŋ with BJTS for PTS lasantaŋ, “playing” or “sporting,” also “shining” or “sounding forth”

  10. I have translated (3d) = [3679d] as the first line of this poem: “I saw the Leader of the World”. Placing the verb at the end of the string of epithets works better in Pāli than it does in English, when presenting a string of descriptors as long as this one.

  11. lit., “having taken,” gahetvāna

  12. apatthariŋ. BJTS reads avatthariṃ (and cf. PTS alt. avattari), with the same meaning.

  13. i.e., the Buddha’s, following the BJTS SInhala gloss.

  14. reading kāḷānusāriyaṃ with BJTS for PTS kāḷāṇusārikaŋ. RD (s.v.) takes Kāḷa + anusāriyaṃ fr. kala 1, “black, (pol- ished?) Anusāri ("a kind of dark, fragrant sandal wood" Vin. Texts ii.51) Vin i.203; S iii.156=v.44= A v.22.” BJTS glosses the term as “black-vine (kaḷuväl, an odiferous back creeper often used for binding given its supple and strong texture) or aloe wood (agil).” Given the specification of “black” (kāḷa°) I take the latter reading, though underline that this is not a type of sandalwood in either event, and find perplexing that BJTS glosses both black-vine and aloe wood as “saffron-colored” (kasāvat). The protagonist presumably carries with him a paste made by grinding the wood, of whichever type (in modern South Asia it usually is indeed a variety of sandalwood), into a paste, which is kept on hand for this purpose, i.e., for smearing (on the forehead) of a person in order to bless him or her.

  15. anulimpin, “smeared on”

  16. lit., “the Sambuddha”

  17. santhaviŋ

  18. oghatiṇṇa

  19. paratitthiye maddase

  20. reading jitasaṅgamo with BJTS for PTS jitasaṅgame. I following BJTS Sinhala gloss (dinana lada saṅgrāma äti, “he who has meetings where he wins”), which seems to take the Pāli as “he whose meetings result in defeating [others],” but could also mean, “He who has meetings with the defeated,” “he by whom meetings are defeated,” or, drawing on the “bull” imagery, “he who wins in sexual intercourse”

  21. lit., “in just that way,” tath’ eva, a filler which translated literally does not add to the clarity of the metaphor.

  22. BJTS reads °jālena, (instr.) “by a net,” but I think the PTS reading °jāle (loc.) makes better grammatical sense here, the first two feet forming an extended locative absolute construction.

  23. sampatānite, glossed by BJTS as atuḷa kalhi, “when it has been spread”

  24. lit., “living things,” pāṇā; BJTS glosses ”(fish)” (matsyayō)

  25. antojālagatā, lit., “gone to inside the net”

  26. reading puthupāsaṇḍanissita with BJTS for PTS phuṭā saccchchavinissitā (“are numerous and ungrounded in truth”?)

  27. mārisa, in the voc.

  28. anto ñāṇavare tuyhaŋ

  29. patiṭṭhā

  30. nātho

  31. saraṇo

  32. parāyaṇo = final end, support, refuge

  33. ekavīro

  34. asādiso

  35. reading kāruṇāmettāsañcchayo with BJTS for PTS mettākāruṇādisañcchayo, “heap of love, compassion, etc.” (which breaks meter).

  36. susīlo, lit., “one who has good moral discipline”

  37. asamo

  38. santo

  39. vasī

  40. tādī

  41. jitāñjaso, following BJTS gloss. I read this foot vasī tadī jitāñjaso with PTS vasitavijitañjayo

  42. dhīro

  43. vigatasammoho

  44. anejo

  45. akathaŋ kathī. BJTS reads this as a compound, akathaṅkathī

  46. vusito

  47. vantadoso, lit., “who has vomited up hate”

  48. nimmalo

  49. payato

  50. reading succhī with BJTS for PTS suci

  51. reading sangâtigo with BJTS for PTS sangh’âtīto

  52. reading hatamado with BJTS for PTS gatamado (“Gone into Conceit” “Intoxicated One”

  53. tevijjo, “possessor of the three higher knowledges” (recognition of former births, insight into the future destiny of all being, recognition of the origin of misery and of the path to its removal), that is, an arahant. The term is also used in a non-Buddhist (Brahmanical) sense, “master of the three Vedas,” but here the Buddhist interpretation would seem most appropriate.

  54. tibhavantago

  55. sīmâtigo

  56. dhammagarū

  57. katattho, lit., “he whose goal is done”

  58. hitadhammato

  59. tārako, elsewhere in this translation this epithet is translated “Crosser Over”

  60. assāsa (“breathing easily”) + kārako

  61. nidhīva

  62. asambhito

  63. reading dappito with BJTS for PTS dammito, “Tamed”

  64. pāpakammaŋ

  65. nibbāyissati

  66. in the BJTS reading which guides me here, the last two feet of this verse have an implied, 3rd person plural subject.

  67. reading aññātañccha vijāneyyuṃ with BJTS for PTS aññātañccha vijāneyyaŋ (“I should learn”)

  68. reading phuseyyuṃ amataṃ padaṃ for PTS phasseyyam amataŋ padaŋ (“I should touch the deathless path”). Phassati is related to phuseti and in fact can stand for it, but the latter carries the applied meaning “reach” or “achieve” (an exalted religious state), and the first person makes no sense in context.

  69. here too BJTS agrees with the PTS variant reading of this foot