[426. {429.}1 Sovaṇṇakiṅkhaniya2]

Having departed [home] with faith,
I went forth into homelessness.
Wearing robes made out of bark, I
placed [my] trust in asceticism.3 (1) [4600]

Atthadassi, the Blessed One,
the World’s Best One, the Bull of Men,
came to be in that period,
ferrying many folks across. (2) [4601]

[All] my strength was [then] exhausted,
due to a serious4 illness.
Remembering the Best Buddha,
making an excellent stupa
of sand, with a happy heart I
scattered golden kiṅkhani blooms,
by the thousands, [on that stupa,]
my mind [full of] exultation.5 (3-4) [4602-4603]

As though facing6 the Sambuddha,
I attended on that stupa
with mental pleasure about [him],
Atthadassi, the Neutral One. (5) [4604]

Reborn in7 the world of the gods,
I’m obtaining great happiness.
There I was the color of gold:
that’s the fruit of Buddha-pūjā. (6) [4605]

[There] I had eight hundred million
women dressed in their ornaments.8
They’re waiting on me all the time:
that’s the fruit of Buddha-pūjā. (7) [4606]

There sixty thousand instruments,
bhera-drums9 and paṇava-drums,10
conch-shells and deṇḍima-drums11 [too,]
speaking the lovely sound of drums.12 (8) [4607]

[And also] eighty-four thousand
elephants all-ornamented,
mātaṅgas13 rutting in three ways14
[and] tuskers sixty years of age,
covered over with nets of gold,
[always] are attending15 on me,
and elephants equipped for war,16
are not [ever] lacking for me.17 (9-10) [4608-4609]

I am enjoying the result
of golden kiṅkhani18 flowers.
Fifty-eight times I exercised
sovereignty over [all] the gods. (11) [4610]

And seventy-one times I was
a king who turns the wheel [of law].
On earth, a hundred and one times,
I exercised world-rulership. (12) [4611]

That one has now gained deathlessness,
unconditioned, hard to perceive.
The fetters have [all] been destroyed;
now there will be no more rebirth. (13) [4612]

In the eighteen hundred aeons
since I presented that flower,
I’ve come to know no bad rebirth:
that is the fruit of Buddha-pūjā. (14) [4613]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Like elephants with broken chains,
I am living without constraint. (15) [4614]

Being in Best Buddha’s presence
was a very good thing for me.
The three knowledges are attained;
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (16) [4615]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (17) [4616]

Thus indeed Venerable Sovaṇṇakiṅkhaniya Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Sovaṇṇakiṅkhaniya 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. “Gold Kiṅkhani Flower-er.” BJTS spells the name “Soṇṇakiṅkhaṇiya”

  3. tapokammaŋ apassito.

  4. paramena, “superior” “best.” BJTS Sinhala gloss: däḍi, “strong”

  5. reading udaggamānaso (“thrilled mind”) with BJTS for PTS uddaggamānaso (“a mind on top of water”)

  6. or “face to face with”

  7. lit., “being gone to”

  8. samalaṇkatā, lit., “well-ornamented,” “together with their ornaments,” “all decked out”

  9. bheriyo, “kettle-drums,” BJTS Sinh. gloss gäṭabera

  10. paṇavāni, “a kind of small drum or cymbal,” BJTS Sinh. gloss paṇā [read panā] bera

  11. deṇḍimā, “a kind of kettle-drum”

  12. vaggu [BJTS vagguṃ] vadati dundubhi (BJTS, “speaking beautifully the sound of drums”)

  13. see n. to #1, v. 25 [164]. Or glossary?

  14. i.e., showing their rut in their eyes, ears, and genitals. See cty, p. 288.

  15. lit., “are doing attendance”

  16. balakāye gaje c’eva, lit., “and also army elephants” or “also elephants army troops” or “also cavalry elephants”

  17. lit., “a lack…does not exist for me”

  18. BJTS reads °kiṅkhaṇi°