[527. {530.}1 Sugandha2]

In this [present] lucky aeon
Brahmā’s Kinsman, Greatly Famed One,
named Kassapa through [his] lineage,3
Best Debater,4 [Buddha] arose. (1) [5617]5

Possessing Eighty Lesser Marks,
Bearing the Thirty-Two Great Marks,
Having6 a Fathom-Wide Aura,
Gone into a Net of Light-Rays,7 (2) [5618]

as Comforting8 as is the moon,
Maker of Light [just] like the sun,
Quenching [just] as does a raincloud,
a Mine of Gems like the ocean, (3) [5619]

Through morals like earth; through wisdom
like the sky; through meditation9
like Himalaya; like the wind
[he does] not stick to anything. (4) [5620]

At one time he, the Sage So Great,
Confident among Multitudes,10
is explaining the [Noble] Truths,
[and] lifting up the populace. (5) [5621]

I was then a millionaire’s son
in Benares, very famous.
Back then I was the master11 of
considerable wealth and grain. (6) [5622]

[While] wandering about on foot,
I came up to the “Deer-Park”12 [grove].
There I saw the such-like Buddha,
[who was] preaching the deathless state,
in distinct [and] delightful words,
with the [sweet] tone of a cuckoo,
with the noise of a swan [or] drum,
making the people understand. (7-8) [5623-5624]

Having seen that God Above Gods,
and hearing his honey[-sweet] words,
having abandoned no small wealth,
I went forth into homelessness. (9) [5625]

Thus gone forth, in not a long time,
being a very learned [monk],
I became a Dhamma-preacher,
having diverse intelligence. (10) [5626]

Amidst large multitudes I [then],
happy-hearted, repeatedly,13
extolled the Buddha’s gold color,
skilled at extolling [his] beauty:14 (11) [5627]

“This is Buddha, the Undefiled,15
Unconfused One,16 With Doubt Cut Out,17
he whose Karma is All Destroyed,18
Freed in the End of Conditions.19 (12) [5628]

This is Buddha, the Blessed One;
he’s the Unsurpassed, the Lion,
the Turner of the Brahma-wheel20
for the world including the gods; (13) [5629]

Tame, the Tamer, the Peaceful One,
the Appeaser,21 Blown Out,22 the Sage,23
the Quencher24 and the Comforted,25
the Comforter26 of the people; (14) [5630]

The Hero, the God, the Wise One,
Wisdom, Compassionate, Master,
the Conqueror, and the Victor,
Not Being Reborn,27 Homeless One;28 (15) [5631]

Lust-less One,29 Unshaking, Smart One,30
Undeluded, Unequaled,31 Sage,32
Yoke-Bearer,33 Bull, the Elephant,
Lion, Indra34 among gurus; (16) [5632]

Passionless One,35 Stainless One,36 God,37
God of Speakers,38 Fault-Renouncer,39
Unobstructed40 and Free of Grief,41
Unequaled,42 Restrained,43 the Pure One;44 (17) [5633]

the Brahmin,45 the Monk46 [and] the Lord,47
the Physician48 [and] the Surgeon,49
Warrior,50 Buddha, Sacred Lore,51
Unshaking,52 the Glad One,53 the Free;54 (18) [5634]

Upholder,55 Ready,56 the Slayer,57
the Doer,58 the Guide,59 Explainer,60
the Gladdener,61 the Enjoyer,62
the Cutter,63 the Hearer,64 the Praised;65 (19) [5635]

Unobstructed66 and Extensive,67
Unconfused One,68 Not Uncertain,69
Lust-less,70 Unstained,71 the Companion,72
Goer,73 the Speaker,74 Explainer;75 (20) [5636]

the Crosser,76 the Meaning-Maker,77
the Builder,78 [also] the Tearer,79
Attainer,80 Bearer,81 Beloved,82
Slayer,83 Energetic,84 Ascetic,85 (21) [5637]

Even-Minded86 [and] Impartial,87
Self-Dependent,88 Home of Kindness,89
Wonderfully Peaceful,90 Honest,91
Doer of the Deed,92 Seventh Sage;93 (22) [5638]

Crossed Beyond Doubt,94 Free of Conceit,95
the Boundless One,96 Beyond Compare,97
Traveled the Roads of All Sayings,98
Attained the Truth to Know,99 Victor.100 (23) [5639]

[Buddha’s] palace brings deathlessness
in the best hardwood of beings;101
the powerful have faith in the
Buddha, Teaching and Assembly.” (24) [5640]

By means of virtues such as these,
I did [my] preaching of Dhamma,102
praising amidst the multitudes
the Three Worlds’ Unsurpassed Refuge. (25) [5641]

Falling from there, in Tusitā,
having enjoyed great happiness,
falling from there, among people,
I’m born with a very good scent. (26) [5642]

My wind,103 the fragrance of my mouth,
likewise too [my] body odor,
and the scent of [my] sweat, always
surpasses104 all [other] perfumes. (27) [5643]

My mouth-fragrance always is of
pink [and] blue lotus and jasmine.
And so too my body[-odor],
always blowing very calmly.105 (28) [5644]

All of you, minds concentrated,
listen to my [words], I’ll extol
all of that most amazing fruit
for one who [praised] virtue’s value.106 (29) [5645]

Having told the Buddha’s virtues
with kindness when people gather,
bound up with a honey-sweet sound,107
I am happy in every place, (30) [5646]

famous, happy, [also] held dear,
splendorous, lovely to look at,
a speaker, not disregarded,
free of faults and also [most] wise. (31) [5647]

When life ends,108 nirvana’s easy
to reach for Buddha’s devotees.
I’m telling the cause of their [ease];
listen to that109 [now] truthfully: (32) [5648]

I saluted in due form the
Blessed One’s fame for peacefulness.
Because of that I am famous110
[when] I am reborn here and there. (33) [5649]

[I] am happy because111 I praised
the Buddha who ends suffering,112
[and] peaceful, unconditioned Truth,113
giving happiness to beings. (34) [5650]

Declaring the Buddha’s virtue,
bound up with joy in the Buddha,
I made114 [him] dear to self and to
others; therefore I am held dear. (35) [5651]

Overcoming evil rivals115
in the rival-strewn116 people-flood,
praising117 virtue I lit up the
Leader; therefore I’m splendorous. (36) [5652]

Telling118 the Sambuddha’s virtue,
I made him lovely to people,119
as is the moon in the autumn;120
therefore I’m121 lovely to look at. (37) [5653]

With all [my] words I praised Buddha,122
to the extent [I] was able;123
therefore I speak eloquently,124
[and] have diverse intelligence. (38) [5654]

With the great Teaching I restrained
those fools who, afflicted with doubt,125
treat the Sage So Great with contempt;
therefore I’m not disregarded. (39) [5655]

Through the virtues of the Buddha,
I drove126 out beings’ defilements.
I am [now] free of defilements,
as a result of that karma. (40) [5656]

A preacher who recalls Buddha,
I brought Buddha to listeners.
Therefore I’m endowed with wisdom,
contemplating subtle meanings. (41) [5657]

All [my] defilements are destroyed;
[I’ve] crossed the ocean of being.127
Like fire, [I] have no attachments;
I will realize nirvana. (42) [5658]

Within just this [present] aeon
since I [thus] praised [him], the Buddha,
I’ve come to know no bad rebirth:
that’s the fruit of praising Buddhas. (43) [5659]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Like elephants with broken chains,
I am living without constraint. (44) [5660]

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! (45) [5661]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (46) [5662]

Thus indeed Venerable Sugandha Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Sugandha Thera is finished.

The Summary:

Tiṇada and Pecchchada128 too,
Saraṇ’, Abbhañjanappada,
Pūpatī129 and Daṇḍadāyī,
and likewise tooNelapūjī,
Bodhisammajak’,130 Āmaṇḍa,
and tenth Sugandha, a brahmin.
Altogether counted here are
one hundred twenty-three verses.

The Tiṇadāyaka Chapter, the Fifty-Third


  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. “Good Smell”

  3. gottena

  4. vadataŋ varo

  5. Here BJTS inadvertently repeats the number 5617, so that there are two verses numbered as such

  6. lit., “Surrounded by”

  7. raŋsijālasamosaṭo

  8. assāsetā

  9. lit., samādhi

  10. parisāsu visārado

  11. pahū, BJTS Sinh. gloss prabhū

  12. PTS and BJTS agree in treating this as a proper name, Migadāya

  13. lit., “again and again”

  14. this verse plays on the word “color” (vaṇṇa), which also means “beauty” (and caste, appearance, quality, etc.) and is the root of the word translated here as “extolled” (vaṇṇayiŋ) and “extolling” (vaṇṇa°)

  15. khīṇâsavo, lit., “He Whose Defilements (or Outflows) are Destroyed”

  16. anīgho

  17. chinnasaŋsayo

  18. sabbakammakhayan patto, lit., “attainer of the destruction of all karma”

  19. reading vimuttopadhisaṅkhaye with BJTS for PTS vimutto saṭisaṅkhaye. Upadhi = a condition or ground for rebirth

  20. brahmacchakkappavattako. BJTS and PTS agree on this reading, where one would expect dhammacchakka°

  21. sametā, fr. sameti

  22. nibbuto

  23. isi

  24. nibbāpetā

  25. assattho. Could also be, “The Bodhi (asvattha) Tree”

  26. assāsetā

  27. apagabbho, “not returning to the womb”

  28. anālayo, lit., “lair-less one”

  29. anejo

  30. dhīmā, BJTS gloss nuvanätiyē ya

  31. asamo

  32. muni

  33. dhorayho

  34. sakko

  35. virāgo

  36. vimalo

  37. brahmā

  38. vādisuro

  39. raṇañjaho, or “battle-renouncer” “sin-renouncer” “fault-abandoner”

  40. akhilo

  41. visallo

  42. asamo

  43. payato

  44. suci

  45. brāhmaṇo

  46. samaṇo

  47. nātho

  48. bhisakko

  49. sallakattako, “the one who works on the (poison) arrow.”

  50. yodho

  51. or “the Son,” suto, Skt. śruti

  52. acchalo

  53. mudito

  54. asito. BJTS reads adito (?), gloss utgataya (?)

  55. reading dhātā with BJTS for PTS tātā (“the Protector” “the Savior”)

  56. reading dhatā with BJTS for PTS tantā (“the Thread”)

  57. hantā

  58. kattā

  59. netā

  60. paksitā

  61. sampahaŋsitā

  62. bhottā, BJTS reads bhettā (“the Breaker”)

  63. chettā

  64. sotā

  65. pasaŋsitā

  66. akhilo

  67. visālo. BJTS reads visallo (“Free of Pain”)

  68. anīgho

  69. akathaṅkathī, ilt.“not saying, ‘why’?”

  70. anejo

  71. virajo

  72. khattā. BJTS reads khantā (“Meek” “Docile”)

  73. reading gantā with BJTS for PTS gandhā (“Scented”)

  74. reading vattā with BJTS for PTS mettā (“Love”)

  75. pakāsitā

  76. tāretā

  77. reading atthakāretā with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS repetition of tāretā (“the Crosser”)

  78. kāretā

  79. sampadāletā, BJTS sampadālitā

  80. pāpetā

  81. sahitā, or “Endurer”

  82. reading kantā with BJTS for PTS repetition of hantā, which both texts read as the next word in the verse

  83. hantā

  84. reading ātāpī with BJTS for PTS tātâpi (“also the Protector”)

  85. tāpaso, this makes nine syllables in the line, which needs to be chanted as eight by contracting “slayer” into “slair”

  86. samacchitto

  87. ‘samasamo, (following BJTS Sinh. gloss; the cpd. could also be samasamo, “Always the Same”

  88. asahāyo, lit., “Friendless”

  89. reading dayāsayo (and following gloss) with BJTS for PTS dayāyaso (“famous for kindness” “kind-famed”)

  90. acchcherasanto

  91. akuho, lit., “free of deceit” “upright”

  92. katāvī, i.e. an arahant, one who has done what should be done

  93. isisattamo

  94. nittiṇṇakaṅkho

  95. nimmāno

  96. appameyya, lit., “not to be measured”

  97. anupama, lit., “he for whom there is no metaphor”

  98. sabbavākyapathātīto, lit., “he for whom the roads of all sayings are in the past”

  99. saccchchaneyyantago, lit., “he who has gone to the end of truths to be understood [or instructed, led carried, guided (gerund of neti)]”

  100. jino

  101. sattasāravare. BJTS construes this as modifying the palace, but the Pāli seems to me more ambiguous than that. Cf. the use of sattasāra° as a Buddha-epithet in v. [5887] and [6287]

  102. reading akaṃ dhammakathaṃ ahaṃ with BJTS for PTS ahaŋ dhammakathaŋ ahaŋ (“I Dhamma-preaching I”)

  103. nissāso, following BJTS gloss māgē piṭataṭa heḷana vātaya (“the wind that I throw down/cast away to my exterior”)

  104. reading sabbagandhe ‘tiseti (= atisayati) with BJTS for PTS sabbagandho ti seti (“it lies down ‘all good scents’ “) and following BJTS SInhala gloss

  105. BJTS reads ādisanto (“announcing”) for atisanto

  106. reading guṇatthavassa sabbaṃ taṃ phalaṃ tu paramambhūtaṃ with BJTS for PTS guṇatthavassapupphan tan phalan tu param abbhutaŋ (“that fruit which is extremely miraculous flowering in the meaning of virtue” [?]), and followed BJTS gloss: buddha guṇakitiyāge ē siyalu vipāka atiśaya vismayajanaka ya.

  107. the fourth (in translation third) foot of the text seems to be corrupt. IPTS reads rasaddhovisamāyuto, “bound up with the pure taste.” BJTS reads (typographical error?) saradvadhanisamāyuto (= rasadhvanisaāmyuto ?). In both cases the alts. are even more uncertain. I translate the BJTS Sinhala gloss, madhura svaradhvani yukta vūyem (- mihirihaddha ättem), “i becoming bound with the sweet sound (I have a sweet sound)”

  108. reading khīṇe ayusi with BJTS for PTS khīṇ’ ev’ āyu pi (“life is certainly destroyed too”)

  109. lit., “all of you listen to that” (2nd pers. pl. imp.)

  110. yasassī

  111. lit., “therefore [I] am happy”

  112. dukkhantakaraṇaŋ Buddhaŋ, lit “the Buddha who makes an end to suffering”

  113. dhammaŋ, or “Teaching”

  114. janayaŋ, lit., “I produced”

  115. or “heretics”: kutitthiye

  116. reading titthikākiṇṇe with BJTS for PTS titthikâkiṇṇo (“I am strewn with rivals”)

  117. vadanto, lit., “saying,” “telling”

  118. reading vadaṃ with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS varaŋ (“excellent”)

  119. reading janassa with BJTS (and PTS alts.) for PTS °jinassa (“of the Victor”)

  120. reading sarado va sasaṅko ‘haṃ with BJTS for PTS saraŋ divasasanko ‘haŋ (“I am the moon in the day for a lake” [?])

  121. lit., “I was”

  122. lit., “the Well-Gone-One,” sugataŋ

  123. yathāsattivasena

  124. vāgīso, “[I am one] with mastery of speech”

  125. reading vimatippattā with BJTS for PTS vimatiŋ pattā, though the latter conveys (somewhat ungrammatically) the same sense

  126. reading apades’ ahaṃ with BJTS (and PTS alt.) for PTS apaniŋ (same meaning, fr. apaneti)

  127. tiṇṇasamsārasāgaro

  128. BJTS reads mañcchado (“Mañcchada”)

  129. BJTS reads supaṭo (“Supaṭa”)

  130. this is the BJTS reading for PTS bodhisammajako (“Bodhisammajaka”)