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LIBRARY

Ac. No. "377a/" Date oj release for loan This book should be returned on or before the date last stamped below. An overdue charge of 5 Paise will be collected for each day the book is kept

DELHI UNIVERSITY LlBRAR Y CI. No·~41: Hq

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it' ;,,_ !iL-

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A MANUAL OF BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL TRADITIONS
(SADDHAMMA-SANGAHA)

A

MANUAL OF BUDDHIST TRADITIONS

HISTORICAL

(SADDHAMMA-SANGAHA)

fRANSLATED

INTO ENGLISH

FOR THE

nas f

TI'\IIE

BY

BIMALA

CHURN

LAW,

PH.D., M.A.,

B.L

Fellow. Royal ASiatic Society of Bengal. Fellow. Royal Geographical Society. Honorary Correspondent, Arclllleological SUl\ey of India Author, Some KsalflYB Tribes of Ancient india, Life and Work of BuddhBgltosa, A History of Pal. Literature, etc , etc

DLH. UNIV. LIBRY. SYSTEM
PUBLISHED BY THE

UNIVERSITY

OF CALCUTTA
1941

PRINTED
PRTNTIID AND PUBLISEED PRESS,

IN llooDIA
BAl>I!RJEB AT THII

BY BEtrPIll>DRALAL

CALCUTTA UNIVERSITY

4B, BAZRA ROAD, BALLYGUNOll, CALCUTT..

C U Pre8s-Rpg No 134fB-M&jI.1!I41-1I.

CONTENTS
I'AOIT.

Introduction
CHAPTER

1 I

Tile Fast Great

COUDCII

19
II

CHAPTER

'I'he Second Council
CHAPTER

37 HI

The Tlurd Council
CHAPTER

IV a

The Acceptance of the Cetiyapabbata-vihni
CHAP'I'ER

46

V

The Fonrth

Couneil

T'he Account of the Pitakas III Books

Writing

of

Three

61
VII
(If

CHAPTER

The Account of the 'I'rauslatiou AHhakathn on the Three Pitakas

the G9

VI

CONTEN'l'~
CHAPTER

VIII 83

The Accollnt of [be Tikas of tbe 'rlJree Pitakaa
CHAPTHR

IX 90

The Account of nil the Books compiled by TheraE.
CHAPTER

X
~5

The Account of the Advantages of Wntlllg the Three Pitakas
CHAPTER

XI 100 136

The Account of the Advalltages of Healing the Preaching of the Norm The Colopbon

Inde~

139

A Manual of Buddhist Historical Traditions
INTRODUCTION
The Saddhamma-Samgaha wlrich 18 a noncanomcal Pah work of a later date has been edited in Roman characters for the first time by N. Saddhananda of Ceylon and puhhshed In the Journal of the Pali Text Society for the year 1890. ThIS work, as its utle suggests, IS a compendium of the traditional history of Buddhism. rtf! colophon mentions that the book was compiled by thera Dhammakrtn of Ceylon at a great monastery called Lankarama built by the great king Parnmarsja. ~he Saddhamma-Samguha presents us wtth a. bare outline or ecclesiasucal and literary history of Buddlusm drawn upon tradiuonal materia Is. It IS a historical record of the part played by Buddhism 10 Ceylon. The lnstoncal value of this work is enhanced by the inclusion of the account of two Buddlnst Councils held in Ceylon during the reigns of Devanampiyaussa and VattagiimlOl. As regards the three earlier Councils held III India, its account diflcrs matenally In some respects from those found in the VtnayacuUavagga m the commentaries of Buddbagbosa, and III two earher Pah chronicles, the Dipavam3a and the Maha· vamsa. ThIS work also preserves very farthful
J

~

BUDDHIST HISTORICAL TRADITIONS

records of the vanous Buddhist estabhshments of Ceylon, and It also contains Important data for the chronology of Buddhist kmgs of India and Ceylon. A careful study of this book WIll surely give us- ghmpses into the history of Ceylon and her connection WIth India. After the third Buddhist Council was over, Buddhist nnssionenes were sent by thera Moggahputtatissn to different countrtes for the propagation of Buddlusm It was during the reign of Devanampryatissa that thera Mahinda at the mstauce 01 them. Moggahputtatrsaa went to Ceylon and WIth the kings' help and protection introduced Buddhism into the Island of Lnnkf In thrs Island the order of bhikkhunrs was first estabhshed by 'I'heri Sangbarmttia who went to Ceylon WIth the Bo-tree and converted the Queen Anulii with ber many female compnmons The account, however, IS wholly based upon the Mahavamsa. This book briefly deals WIth Buddhaghosa's hfe and hIS visit to Ceylon dunng the time of MahlinJ.ma admittedly on the baSIS of the Oulavamaa. The only new point recorded lS that Buddhagbosa met Buddhadatta on h18 way to Ceylon. The author does not seem to be aware of the fact that Buddhaghosa himself states III the colophon of hIS Vinaya Commentary that he undertook and completed this work durmg the 21st year of the reign of king Smpaia of Ceylon. ThIS work further gIves an account of the compilation of the Pali commentanes and sub-

INTRODUCTION

3

commentaries of the three PI takas including other well-known Pah works by the theras, It also Iuunahes us with valuable information of Mahavibara, the Abhayaginvihara, the Oenyagirivibera, the Lohapasada, the 'I'huparama, the Mahameghavanavihara, the Pubbarama, and other Important Buddhist estabhshments III Ceylon. The last two chapters strike the keynote of the Saddhamma Samgaha. ThIS book consists of eleven chapters WhICh are eummansed below. The Saddhamma-Samgalla is written III an elegant and simple language. It belongs to the class of manuals and as such It IS a mixture of prose and poetry In most cases the prose portion serves only as an explauatron of the poetry portion. The author has borrowed VelY largely from the actual texts of the Dipauamsa, the Mahavamsat the Atthakathli and other \\ ell-know n Pah works WhICh are SImply referred to as Poriinii or ancient anthon ties ThIS manual contains many discourses common to the Mahiibodhwa1'f!.Sa, tLe GandhalJU111Sa, the Siisanatamsa and the like.
CHAPTER I After hIS enlightenment tbe Buddha lived for forty-five years. When he bad attained the Panmbbana, seven hundred thousand bhikkhus assembled there Thera Mabakassaps, recollecting the words spoken by Subhadda, felt the necessity of reciting the Dhamma and the Vinaya. FIve hundred arbants were selected in order to hold a Council. After the rainy season,

4

BUDDHIST HISTORICAL TRADITIONS

a httle more than three months after the Parinibbiina of the Buddha, tlns COUDCIl was held at Rajagaba Thera Mahakassapa who was voted to the chair, took the preacher s seat, and asked questions touching the Vinaya and the Dhamma. Upah recited the Vinaya, and Koanda the Dhamma. The five hundred arhants recited together the texts In tbe manner III wlneh they were presented and adopted. The work of the FIrst Council was fimsbed after seven months, and the collecuon of the Vmaya and the Dhamma, compiled by them, came to be known as thera

tradinon. It may be noted here that according to this account, the three Pitakas with all their existing books and dlVlSIODS were recited III the FIrst Buddhist COllnCII. It IS, however, clear that the author bas mtenuonally made a nnstake here by statmg that all the seven books of the A bhuilunnmaP1,aka were also recited III tlns Council, 'I'his statement is III dn ect contradictron to the statement (Ch Ill), that It was 10 tbe Third Council thai Thera Moggaliputtanssa expounded Kathavatthu III order to put a stop to all dissentient Views. The remaimng portion of this chapter IS devoted to an elaborate dreeussron on the manifold division of the Buddha's word. This chapter contains nothmg original.
CHAPTI.!lR

II

A century after the Panmbbana
the VajJiputtaka bhikkhus of

of the

Buddha,

INTRODUCTION

Vesali promulgated the Ten Points which were not enjoined upon the bhikkhus. Thera Yasa, who was then staYlDg at the Mahavana, in the I{l1tagiira Hall heard It, and apprebendmg the danger III the Sasana, the bhikkhus assembled. In order to hold a Council he selected only seven hundred arhants out of one thousand and twelve hundred blnkkhus who gathered there m a conference. These arhants met at Viilukarama. Thera Babbakarm, questroned by Thera Revata, recited the Vmaya, and the dispute on the Ten Points was set at rest. The bhikkhus then recited the entire Dhamma and Vmaya. This Secoud Council was concluded after eight months. III Two hundred and eighteen years after the Pannibbsna of the Buddha, sixty thousand heretics became envious of the gam and honour of the bhi kkhus, and they, too, cutting oITtheir hall'S and putting on the yellow robes, went about the viharas, disturbed the blnkkhus 111 their practices, and created nuisance in the Sasana. So the bhikkhus were unable to boJd the Uposatha ceremony for seven years. In order to purge the Sasaua of Its blemishes, kmg Asoka called the blnkkhus in an assembly in the Asokarama under the presidency of 'I'hera Moggahputtatissa, Then did the king question one by one on the doctrine of the Buddha. The heretics expounded then wrong doctrines and the king Asoka caused them to be expelled from the Order.
CHAPTER

6

BUDDIDST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

When the Sasana was thus purified, the bhikkbus met and held the Uposatha ceremony. Out of SIxty hundred thousand bhikkhus who assembled there, Thera Moggahputta 'I'issa selected only one thousand learned and expert bhikkhus III order to hold a council, The Thud Council was accordmgly held at the Asokarama. Ib. that congreganon Thera Moggahputta 'I'issa expounded the Katha.vatthu, refut mg the dissentient views. The blnkkhus recited the Dhamma and the Vmaya, accordmg to the procedure adopted in the first two Oouncils. The work of thiS Council was finished after Dille months. CHAPTER IV After the Third Council was over, tnisstonanes were sent by Thera Moggaliputta Tlssa In bands each cousistmg of five Theras to vanous places to establish the Buddha's religion. Thera Majjhnntika was sent to Kasmira and Gandhrua, Thera Mahadeva to Malnsamandala, 'I'hera Rakklnta to Vanavasi, Then. Dhammarskkluta to Ap<lrantalm, Thera Mahadbammarakkhita to Mabarattha, Thera Mabal'akkhita to the YOl1n. counrry, 'I'hera Majjhimu to the HImalayan region, 'I'he: as Bonaka and Uttara to Suvannabhumi, and Thera Mahiuda with his four compamons-Theras Ittlya, Uttiya, Sambala, and Bhaddasiila=-to the Island of Lanka. It was 10 the two hundred and thirty-sixth year alter the Parimbbana of the Buddha that Thera Mnhinda reached the island of Lanka with

)

INTRODUC'lION

'1

four theras and a samanera named Sumana, and stayed on the Missaka mountain. On that day, In Lanka, a festivity called Jetthamiila took place. KIng Devanampiyatissa, came out of the Clty with a retinue of forty thousand men, and reached the Missaka mountain. At a place called the Ambatthala, he met Thera Malnnda, When they had come to know each other, they held conversation. The thera related the Clllahatthipadopama Sutta, and the king with Ius forty thousand men came unto the three Refuges. Thereafter the thera related the Samacitta Suttanta at a great assembly of gods, and converted many devas, nagus, etc. The theia, uivited by kmg Dovanampiyanssa, entered the CIty and the palace, and related the Petavatrhu, the Vimannvatthu, and the Baccasamyutta, The kmg built tile Mahavihara at the Mahamegbavauu-pmk, aud dedicated It to the Order. Nine thousand and five hundred persons were converted at that time The king then built for the Order the Oeuyapabbatnvihara which the Order accepted. Aritthn With Ius fiftyfive brothers received Paliuajjii [rom tbe thora, and became arahats V Kmg Devunarppiyaussa then caused the fight collar-hone of the Buddha to be laid down In the 'I'hnparama, and many people received Pabbajja on that occasion. Subsequently a branch of a Be-tree (taken {10m India) was planted with due ceremony, and on that day, the
CHAPl'ER

8

BUDDHIST HISTORICAL TRADITIONS

queen AnUla with her many female companions received Pabbajja from 'I'hert Bamgharmtta. The king's nephew (SIster'S son) AflttlH1, too, WIth five hundred men received Pabbajja at that time Under tbe direction of Thera Mahinda, king Devanampryatisaa then arranged for a council of the blukkhus, and built a great ball in the Thilparamo. for the purpose. Many bhikkhus assembled In the 'I'huparnma. Thera Mahmda took hIS seat facmg the south, Thera Anttha was seated on the preacher's seat facing the north. Sixty-etght theras headed by Tbera Mahmda were seated round the preacher's seat The kmg's younger brother Thera Mantabbayu with five hundred blnkkhus was also seated round the preachers seat. The i emarnrng blukkhus uicludmg the king and then attendants were seated III their respective seats. Asked by 'I'hera Malnnda, Thera Arittha recited the Vmaya. In tlns way, they expounded the Dbamma and the Vinaya, and held the Fourth Council. 'I'he work of tlns Council began on. the first great pavsrona-day in the month of Knttika, and ended III an indefinite time, ' VI Three hundred seventy-six years after the Parunbbana of the Buddha, Dutthagannm-abhaya became the king of Lanka. He built the Maucavattr-vihara, the nine-stoned Lohapasadu, and the Great Thiipa, one after the other, and duly consecrated them, He reigned for twenty.
CHAPTER

INT"RODl'('TTON

9

four years at Anuradhapura, and then died. Fiftyseven years after the foundation of the Great Thiipa, Vattagammi-abbaya reigned in Lanka. This king built the Abhayngmvthara and a great Cetiya and dedicated them to the Order of blukkhus headed by Thera Mahatissa. Thereafter the Order of bbikkhus felt the necessrty of putting down the three Pitakas and the Atthakatha. in wntmg, The bhikkhus expressed It to the king, and the king, at their request, provided them with a hall and other necessary articles for the purpose. The order of blnkkhus chose many thousand learned theras III order to bold a council, After rehearsing the Dhamma and the Vmaya according to the procedure adopted III the previous councils, the Order of bhikkhus caused the three Pitakns, with the text and the Attbakatha, to be written down in books from what had been orally handed down, and held it as the FIfth Council. The wntmg of the three Pitukas was completed III one year. CHAPTER VII FIve hundred and sixteen years after the writing of the three Pitakas, Mahanama became the king of Lanka. At that time, a Brahmans youth was born m the neighbourhood ofthe Bo-terrace III the MIddle country of Jambudipa. Skilled m all the sciences and versed in the three Vedas, he went all around Jambudipa as a great disputant. He then came to a vihara, and there he was met b) Thew Revata ,,110 convinced
2--13d.1B

10

BUDDHIST

ffISTOUlCAL

TRADITIONS

him of the superiority of the Buddha's doctrine, and converted him to the Buddhist faith. The Them then taught him the three Pijakas. As he was as profound in hIS ' ghosa ' or eloquence as the Buddha, they conferred on him the appellation of Bnddhaghosa or the VOIce of the Buddha. In that vihara, he composed an original work called the ~anodaya, and wrote a commentary on the Dhammasangani, called the Atthnsalmt. Under the direction of Thera Revata, he started for Ceylon to study the Siuhalese Attbakatha, and compile a Pantta-atthakatha or general commentary on the three Pitakas, On Ins way, he reached Nagapattana, and there he boarded a slup. He, on lns way, met Thera Buddhadatta on the great ocean, and held conversation with him. He reached the island of Lanka 1D the reign of King Mahanama, and there at the Mahapadbaas Hall III the Mabavrhara at Anuradhapura, he met Thera Samghapala. There he hstened to the Atthakatila and the Theravada, became thoroughly C011vinced of the true meaning of the Buddha's doctrine, and then sought the permission of the Order of bhikkbus to translate the Atthalmthii.. 'I'he Order of bhikkhus, for the purpose of testing hie; qualifications, gave him only two gathas out of which he composed the commentary called the Vrsuddlnmagga. The gods rendered that book mvisible. He recomposed a second copy, and this, too, did the gods make invisible. When he

I:t-.TRODUCTION

11

recomposed a thud copy, the gods restored the other two copies also Buddhaghosa, takmg the three copies, preseuted them to the Order of bhikkhus, 'I'hey found the three copies same in an respects, and rejoiced at Ins success. They gave him the texts of the three Pitakas and also the Buihalese commentanes, Buddhaghosa took all those books, and taking up Ins residence In the Padhanaghara on the southern side of the Mahavihara, trauslatcd all the Sinhalese commentaries of the three Pitakas and of the entire 'I'heravuda into Magadhi (Pall). Tbereafter, tbe object of hIS mission being fulfilled, he returned to Jambudlpa to worship the great Be-tree.
CHAPTER VIII SIX hundred aud eighty-three years after the translation of the Atthakatha. of the three Pitakas, Parakkamabahu became a sovereignking of Lanka. One thousand one hundred and fifty-four years after the reign of VattagamlmaLha) a, be found the Sasana decaying Under the Ieadcrslnp of Thera Mahakassapa of Udumbaragln, he caused many hundred blnkkhus to be expelled from the Order, and made the Susana purified. He built many viharas and cehyas at Jetavana, Pubba, rama, Dakkhmalama, Uttararnmu, Veluvana, Kapilavatthu, Isipataua, Kusinmu, and Lankanlaka, He then erected a great U posatha Hall having mne stones and one thousand compartments, decorated with a tower, and rich III pamtmgs, and creeperworks. He adorned Hie Jetavanavihara with rows

l'~

13UDDRl E. r IIISTORICAL

TRADl'l'IONS

of Be-trees, stupas, cells, buts, halls and beautiful tanks and gardens. It was under his patronage that tbe Order of blnkkhus beaded by 'I'hei D Malnikassapa compiled 10 Magadh! the AtthavaJ;l:Q.ana the Attbakathiis of tbe Prtakas, of Tbe following Attha vannanas (su b-commen taries) are mentioned by name :1 Saratthadipani-Thc Atthavannaua of Samantapasadika, Atthakatha of the the the

Vmaya.
2 SarattbamaUlusa (I)-the AtthavannanD. of the Sumangalavilasinr, the A tthakatha of the

Drgha-Nikaya.
3 Baratthamafijusa
(2)-t11e Attbav8J;l:Q.ana of the Papancasudant, the Atthakatha of the

Majjhima-Niksya.
4 Salatthamafijusa (3)-the Atthavannana of the SfiratthappakasinI, the A tthakatba of the Bamyutta-Nikaya. Atthavannana of the 1fanorathapiirani, the Attbakatha of tbe Anguttara-Nikaya.

5 Saratthamafijusii

(4)-the

11'l"TRODuC'J ION

13

6

Paramntthappakasmt

(l )-the Atthavannana of the Atthasalml, the Atthakatha of the Dhammasangaut. (2)-the Attbavannana of the Bammoha-vinodanl, the Atthakatba of the Vlbhanga. (3)-the AtthavaQQana of the Paramatthadlpanl, the Atthakatha of the remaining five books of the Abhidhamma-Prtaka, was

7

Paramatthappakasini

8

Paramattbappaknsmi

TIns compilation of the sub-commentaries completed in one year.
CHAPTER

The text of the three Pitakas contains one thousand one hundred and eighty-three chapters, innumerable syllables and letters, The whole Atthakatha of the PItakas as expounded by Buddhaghosa, contains one thousand one hundred and sixty-three chapters, two lac mne nahuta seven hundred and fifty syllables, as well as ninety-three lac and four thousand letters. The Tika of the three Pitakas contains SIX hundred and thirty-two chapters, one hundred and fifty-eighty thousand syllables as well as fifty hundred and fifty-six thousand letters. Other

IX

14

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

books, compiled by the theras, as follows :-

are then mentioned

Books
1 2 Visuddhrmagga Kankhavitaranr, or Atthakatha Patimokkhs

Authors

of

the

3 4

Khuddakasikkha Abhldhammavatara Paramatthavinicchaya Abhidhammattbasamgaha Saccasarpkhepa Kbema Samghanandi

I
J

Buddhaghosa

Dhammasm Buddhadatta Anuruddha (in the city of Kaficipura) a disciple Knanda Kbema Kaccayana of thera

5
6

7
8 9

10 Samgbanandi-Tika
11 Riipasiddhi 12 Abbidhanappadipika 13 Jmalankara

Vimalabodhi Brabmaputta. Buddbappiya

and

Moggallana
Buddharakkhita Medhankara Dhammapsla

14 Jinacarits
15 Paramatthamafijusa, a 'fika of Visuddhimagga Vinayasamgaha

If)

Sagaramati

I~'IRODUCTION

15

17

Nissayatthakatbii, VanJ;l.ana of

al Sacca-

18

Mukbamattakatbii, a V aJ;u;t ana of ParamattbavmiccbayaJ
Paramatthadipanl, a vam;lana of VIm anaPeta-vattbu Bubodhalankara V uttodaya Khuddakaslkkha-Tiku Sambuddhavannana Vinayavnncchaya Knnkhavitaranl-Tika Paramatthadlpani, an Attbakatbii of 'I'heri-

samkhepa

r Mababodbi
Dhammapala

19

20 21 22 23 24 25 26

1 I
J

Samgharakklnta

Buddhaslha Buddhanaga Dhammapala

giitha 27
28

Ablndhammattasamgaha-Ttka Dbammapada-Atthakathf

A disciple of Sari-

putta Buddhaghosa
Kaccayana A disciple of Sariputta

29
30

N etti pakarann
Sarattbasftlini", vannana of a

Saccasamkhepa

X Thereafter the advantage of writing the three PItakas is related. The eigbtyfour thousand units of Dlunnma, set up by the
CHAPTER

16

B"GDDHlST HIS'roRICAI,

TRADITIONS

Buddha, have by themselves taken the place of the Teacher as eighty-four thousand self-born Buddhas. Each letter in the Pitakas should be considered as having merit equal to Buddha represeutation. Therefore, a WIse man should write down the three Pitakas or cause them to be written down III a book, or in a memorial in honour of the Dhmwma. He who writes down the three Pitakas, fulfils all meritonous deeds, and becomes free from all sufferings. He is reborn perfect in a higher life, and prospers always in happiness, wealth, enjoyment, fame, and the rest. He grows everywhere and in all respects. Even he obtains the SmnbllddhallOod and the most highest bliss of N zbbiina. Really speakmg, tins chapter sets forth the main purpose of this work namely givmg encouragement to the transcription of the three PItakas and the carvmg of Buddha's Images. The source from which the verses are quoted as Buddhavacana cannot be traced. The Sambuddbas have twofold body, one the glonous visible body I and the other the body of doctrine as preached by them. He who WIshes hIS own welfare and greatness, should respectfully bear the preaching of the Norm. He who honours, esteems, reveres and respects the Norm is the person who honours, esteems, reveres and respects the Buddha.
CHAPTER

XI

the

The advantage of heanng the preaching of Norm and of giving one's applause at the

JNTRODUCTION

]7

time of so doing IS Illustrated by a few stones, a brief summary IS given below· (a) Once the Buddha heard Thera Nandaka preaching the Norm and he shouted applause as soon as the preaclnug ~ as over. Asked by Thera. Nandaka, the Buddha replied that be bad done so out of hIS great veneration for the Norm. (b) A certain person, while with Ins seven sons returning from the forest, heard a woman singing a song relatmg to birth, old age and death. They too, on reflection, realised the three things, namely, Impermanence, III and non-sou], and attained the Paccekobuddhohood. Thereafter they became recluses, and went to a cave at the foot, of the Nanda forest In the Northern HImalayas. (c) Once the Buddha preached the Norm to the inhabitants of Campaka. A frog made the Buddha's VOIce an object of Its thought, but it met with Its death suddenly and was reborn III a bIg celestial abode in the Tavahmsa heaven. (d) Once, at the eutr.mce of a cave, Sarrputta repeated the Ablndbamma-Puaka. Five hundred bats hsteuod to Ins recital. They then passed away without taking any food and were reborn III heaven. They were again ] eborn 10 this world as comrades and entering the Order, became arahants, and reached Nibbnna. (e) In the Island of Sibulo, III a beautlful vihnra, named U ddalolakn-vrhara, there h ved
3-134.48

18

BUDDHIST

HII:;fORIC.'\L

TRADITIONS

many deer, pigs and the like. A deer of that hermitage, while going to the landing place to drink water, heard the thera preaching the Norm. Then struck by a hunter It died and was reborn 10 the womb of the younger sister of Thera Abhaya, and afterwards obtained Arahantship. <f) Once many merchants, desirous of going to the island of Lanka, boarded a sea-gomg vessel. As the ship went on peacefully, a bhikkhu who accompanied them, recited a portion from the scriptures. A great fish hstened to the blukkhu's recitation, but later It was killed by the people on the landing place. In consequence of Its hstening to the recitation of the Bhikkhu, it was reborn III a wealthy family in the Bohmi country. He was later initiated as a monk and afterwards attained Arabantship. In the following pages an English of the text of Saddhamma-Sarpgaha attempted for the first time. rendenng bas been

Honour to that Exalted One, Arahant, Buddha Supreme CHAPTER I
THE

FIRST GREAT COUNCIL

1 Having made obeisance to the Buddha, the Doctri ne and the Order-the abode of virtueI will present concisely the compendium of traditional history ofthe Good Faith. 2-3 Havmg completely wiped away (s.e., removed) the obstacles by virtue of the merit (acquired) through services done to the Three Jewels, and having accepted the traditional accounts III the commentanes on the three Pitakas In all their beanngs, this IS compiled by a wise man for the growth of the teachmg of the Lord and for Inspiring confidence among the copyists of the three Pitakas. 4 Attend ye, all good men, present here, being willing to hear, to the presentanon of the " Compendium of traditional history of the Good Faith," complete and clear. To explain the matter, this is the connected story. More than a hundred thousand aeons and four asamkheyyas (countless ages) ago, when our Lord, still Bodhuatui, had obtained the propbecy of

211

BU J)DHl~T

RJ HTORWA

r.

'I R,AnITIONf'l

the 'I'wenty-Iour Buddhas (Ill successron), and had mustered equally all the 'I'hirty Perfections, he reached the climax III Ius progress towards WIsdom. his enhghtenment, formulated eighty-four thousand units of text, deh vcied to the other shore countless beings from the difficult path of existence and f1l1filled all the duties 01 a Buddha ull the ordmation of Subhadda, the Wanderer, be passed away at Kusinura, lymg on the death- bed between the Sal trees

Having hved for forty-five years after

To this effect satd the AllCtenis 5 "In olden times, the Great Hero, havmg offered homage to the twenty-four Sambuddhas, Dipankara, and the rest, received hom the prophecy of his (future) Buddhahood 6 When he had fulfilled all Perfections, and bad reached the highest enlightenment, the sublime Buddha Gotama, set free the world from suffenng 1 7 When he had accomphshed his duties befitting all Sambuddhas, and had reached the tranquil state, the GULde of tile World, passed away on the bed of hIS Panmbbana.
When the "Exalted One, tile Guide of the World, bad attained the Panmbbana, seven hur dred thousand blnkkhus assembled there, and the
I For veraes 5·6, lee Mal&iil.<amBa, Cb I. ~v 10·11

ras
Venerable Elder

FIRST

GREA'r COUNCIL

21

Mahakassapa,

senior of the con-

recollecung the words spoken, seven days after the Exalted One had attained the Panmbbana, by Subhadda, iniuated ID old age, addressed the blnkkhus thus: "}l'nends, we -should recite the Dhamma and tbe Vmaya." The
blukkhus replied' "Reverend SIr, be pleased then to select the elder blnkkhus." Tben the Venerable Mabiikassapa selected five hundred bhtkkhus who were arahants, aud declared' "Fnends, spending the rainy season Ilt Rajagaha, we should recite tbe Dhamma and the Vinaya."

gregauon,

To tiue effect sald the .dnctents :
8 " Seven hundred thousand leading bbikkhus were among them, the thera Mahakassapa was at that time the senior of the congregation "1 9 Seven days after the Lord of the World, gifted With the Ten Powers, had attained the Parnnbbana, (the the ra Mahiikassapa) recalled to Ins mmd the evil words of the aged Subhadda 2 10 To hold the Great Council the great Thera appointed to tlns end five hundred eminent bhikkhus who had overcome E.lDS 8 11 On the second day of the second month of the rainy seasou, the blnkkhus met together in that splendid hall I
1 2 3 4

lIfalliiLamsa, Cil III" 4.. Cf tu«, Ch III, v 6

Ibid. Cb III. v 9 IbId, Ch. ITT, v 26

22

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

Now, on the second day, the elder bhikkhus, having finished their meals, getting ready with their robes and bowls, assembled III the meetingplace. When the bhikkhus remained thus seated there, the thera. Mahakassapa addressed the blnkkhus : "Fnends, which one should we recite first, the Dhamma or the Vinaya ? " The bhikkhus replied: "Reverend Mahakassapa, the Vmaya means the life of the Buddha's own. If the Vmaya lasts, the Order will endure. Therefore we should recite the Vmaya first." Making whom the leader should Vmaya be recited P "The Venerable Upah," (they) replied. The thera Mabakassapa chose hnnself to ask questions coucernmg the Vmaya, and the thera Upah hnnself agreed to answer them. Then the Venerable Upah rose from his seat, arranged hIS upper robe over ODeshoulder.' Paying homage to the elder bhikkhus, and sIttmg ill the Preacher's seat, he took hold of a fan, mlaid with IVOr). Then the Venerable }Iahakassapa., seated in the thera's seat, asked the Venerable Upah : " Friend, where was the first ParaJika rule promulgated ?" " At Vesali, reverend Sir." cc WIth reference to whom ?" H Wrth reference to Sudmna, Kalandaka's son."
I

e I the left

THE
II

FIR.S'l

GR.EA'f COUNCIL

23

,r

In respect of what? .. In respect of sexual intercourse.'

I

Thereafter the venerable Mahakassapa asked the Venerable Upah about the subject-matter, source, person, enactment, supplementary enactment, offence, and innocence as to the first Parii.jika rule. Just as to the first (Parii.]Ika rule) so as to the second, third, and fourth, (Mahakassapa) asked about their subject-matter ... innocence, the thera Upah answered the questions as they were put to him Thereupon they arranged the Collection thus: rr Let these four Parii.Jlka. rules constitute the PiiriiJtka Section.' They arranged the thirteen Samghadisesa rules under ' The Section of the 'I'lnrteen,' the two disciphnary rules under the secuon of the An~y1ta; the thirty disciplmary rules under that of N Issagg ~ya-PliCLttlya, the ninety-two discrplmary rules under that of Piic1ttiya; the four discrphuary rules under that of PiLt~dl'8anlya (those belonging to confession); the seventy-five disctplinary rules under that of Sckhiya; and the seven rules under that of Adhtkarana-lwmatllfl 1 Thus they made the Oollecnon ol toe 1iIahabtbhanga. In the BlllkkhllfJ,i- Vtbhanga, they arranged the eighteen disciplinary rules under the section of PiiraJlka, the seventeen rules under r The Section
1

For these terms a full

dlBMl8S11>ll

n fonnd ID B. C Law's

History

of Pall LlteratUf'6, Vol I, l1P. 51·60

24
of the

DUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

'1RADITION:.:i

thirty rules under that of one hundred and SIxt,Y-SIX rules under that of Piicttttya, the eight rules under that of Piitidesantya (those belonging to coniesston), the seventy-five rules under that of Sekhtya, and the seven rules under that of l1dhlkara'{ta-llamatha. Thus they made the Collection of the BluHhuniV &bhangu. In tlus way they also made the Khandakas and the PaHviira.1 Thus the two Vtbhangas, the KhandulcasJ and the Panviira making up the Cullection of the Vinaya-Pitaka, the thera Mahakassapa questioned, and the thera Upali answered. At the close of questions and answers, the five hundred arahants repeated together the Collection in the same manner as It was adopted. When the Oollection of the Vinsya was completed, the great earth quaked. Then laying aside the fan, inlaid with Ivory, and COIDlDg down from the preacher's seat, the venerabie thera Upah paid homage to the elder bhikkhus, and took the seat previously assigned to him.

Seventeen,'

N lssaggtya-Piicithya,

To ihu effect saul the Ancients :
12 " The great theca (Mabakassapa) laid on lnmself (the task) of asking questions touching the Vmaya and thera Upah (was ready) to explain.

I 'I'IIlS dots Dot tally With the earlier tagga. XI or In tl e Sumallgalavlliismi. I

accouut fither

In

the (lI11a

THE FmST

GREAT OOUNCIL

25

m the thera's seat, the former asked the latter the questions touchmg the Vmaya ; and the latter, seated in the preacher's seat, expounded (the matter). 14 And as the best master of the Vinaya. expounded each (clause) m turn, all (the bhikkhus) knowing the custom, repeated the Vmaya after

13 Sittmg

him."

1

Then having made the Collection of the Vinaya, the venerable Mahakassapa wished to make the Collection of the Dhamma, and asked the bhrkkhus : "In making the Oollection of the Dhsmma, making whom the leader should the Dhamma be recited?" The blnkkhus replied: "The thera Ananda." Then the venerable Mahakassapa chose himself to ask quesnons conoermng the Dhamma, and the thera AnaDda himself agreed to answer them. The venerable Xnand.1 rose from Ius seat, and arranged h16 upper robe over one (i.e., the left) shoulder. Paying homage to the elder bhrkkhus and sittmg m the preacher's seat, he took hold of the fan, inlaid With ivory. The thera Mahs.· kassapa, seated III the theta's seat, questioned the thera Ananda ooucermng the Dhamma . "Friend spoken? "
1

Ananda, where was tbe BrahmaJiila

i

Z

Molla"lIm.a, Cb lIT, Digha, I, pp 1-46.

v,

3i,33.

4-1844B

26
and

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

'rRADITIONS

"Reverend Nii.landa-in

Sir, midway between Ra]agaha the king's garden-house at

Amhalatthika. " " WIth refere-nce to whom? " T, WIth reference to Suppiya the mendicant and his pupil Brahmadatta." Now the venerable Mahakassapa also asked the venerable Ananda the source and person as to the BrahmaJiila Butta. Thereupon (Mahekassapa) asked: t, Fnend An,mda, where was the Sama1i1iaphala 1 spoken?
II

and so on. "Reverend Sir, mango-grove. " ., To whom? ••

at

Rajagaha,

at

Jtvaka's

" To A]ataqattu, son of Vaidehr." Now the venerable Mahakaasapa asked the venerable Ananda the source and person as to the Siimaiiiiaphala Butta. In this way, they rehearsed the Digha-N tkaya

eomprising

thirty-four

suttas

beginnmg

with

Bmhmainla. Saymg" Let this be called the Digha-N th"iiya," they entrusted It to the care of
the venerable Xnanda, and spoke thus : "Frlend, please recite It among your followers." 'I'hereafter they rehearsed the MaJJhmza-Nikiiya oonsistmg of one hundred and fifty-two suttas begmnmg with Mulapanyiiya and entrusted It to
1

Digha, I, pp. 47.86,

THE

FIRST

GREAT COUNCIL

27

the care of the followers of Bariputta, the captain of the Dhamma and spoke thus' H Please protect

it."
Thereafter they rehearsed the Smnyutfa.Ntkiiya contammg seven thousand seven hundred and sixtytwo suttas begmnmg with Oghatara1J.a and entrusted It to the care of the thera Mahnkaasapa and spoke thus: "Reverend BIr, please recite iii among your adherents." Thereafter they rehearsed the Anguttara·Nt1ciiya oompnsiug nine thousand five hundred and :fiftyseven suttas beginmug with C~ttapaTLylidana and entrusted it to the care of the thera Anuruddha, and spoke thus: "Please recite it among your adherents. "1 Having thereafter rehearsed the KhuddakaNtkaya (small discourse), divided mto fifteen different treatises) to WIt, Khllddaka-patha. Dhamnwpada, Udiina, Ltiuuitaka, SuttamplUa, V mziinavatl1w, Petaiaithu, Theragatllii, Thcrigathii, Jiital.a, Nuidesa, Paiuambhid«, Jpadiilla, BuddhaVal1lSa, and Carlyiipttakrt, they put It (the whole colleeuon of suttas) down, callmg It the Sutiania Puak«. Havmg thereafter rehearsed the seven di:fferent (abhidhnmma) treatises, to "it, Dhamrnasangam, V~bhanga, Dhiit1l1.athii, Puggalapaliiiatti, Kathiivatthu, Yamalca and Poithnna, they put it (the
J

CI

SumllilgIJ11J",liiBI"i,

I

28

BlJDDBl ST HISTORIC'AL TRADITIONS

P~taka. Thus the thera Mahakassapa

whole collection) down, calling it the Abhidhamma questioned about all that was rehearsed, and the thera Ananda answered. At the close of questions and answers, the :five hundred Arahauts repeated together the collection. When the collection of the Dhamma was completed, the great earth quaked. Then Iaymg aside the fan, inlaid with Ivory, and coming down from the preacher'S seat, the venerable A.nanda paid homage to the elder bhikkhus, and took the seat previously assigned to

him,
'1'0 ths« eflpct satd the Ancients,
15 "Then the Thera (Mahakassapa) taking (the task) upon himself questioned about the Dhamma him (s.e. Aoanda), the chief of those who bad most often heard (the Buddha's word), him the treasure-keeper of the Great Seer (i.e., the Buddha). 16 LIkewise, the Thera Ananda lnmseli agreed, and taking hIS seat in the preacher's seat, expounded the whole Dhamma." 1 The whole of "the Buddha's Word" IS to be known as one by way of essence; as twofold by way of Dhamma and Vmaya; as threefold by wa) of first, Pi takas by way by way

middle and last, and so also by way of
; as :fivefold by way of Nikayas; as ninefold of Angas ; and as eighty-four-thousandfold of units of text.
1

Mahatlll!1.G, Ch.

m.

'v, 34·35.

THB FIH.~'1' GREA'l.' COUNCIL

29

How by way of essence is it one ? All that the Exalted One spoke, by way of admomtion or contemplation, to the gods, roen, nagas, yakkhas, and the rest, for forty-five years extendmg from the time of Ins g:llmng the highest wisdom up to hIS attamment of the Panmbbana without leaving any residium fOI future existence, have only one essence, namely, the essence of emancipation, Thus by way of essence It IS one How by way of D hamma and V maya IS It twofold? The Vmaya-Pijaka means Vmaya, and the remaimng words of the Buddha constitute Dhamma. Thus by way of Dhamma and Vmaya It is twofold. How by way of first, middle, and last IS It threefold? Herem

"Long I endured the (,1I(I('s of rebirth, Seeldll(j but. pndmg not lhe tnchiieci, Reinrd: contmual IS coni lItllal ]Jain
B'llt nolV lwL'c I r~pled alee (udufeet
1

BehoZrl, thou shall n{)t build the house aqam, Broke 01(' thy beams, thy puuuide destroyed. Now to Ntbblina1 lias my mnul uttnmed A ltd now In me all C1QUllg IS ((eslJoyed." 2
Vlsanl.hiiru-It meana anmbrlatron, Dhammapada, vV 163·64, Jiitakll·TIJ',dana·Kathii, p 76. For InaalahoD, see The E;rpo81tor, p 22 Cf Ps« of Ihe Brethren, v. 1St (whloh eade dlffereDtly) , Rhys DaVIda, BuddhIst BIrth Storie" 103 f.
1 2

30

DUDDHISl'

HISrORICAL

TRADITIONS

These were the first words of the Buddha. Some say: "In the Khandllal.a (the Buddha) uttered a verse containing the song of ecstacy, namely,

• Lo .' tohen appeltr true doctrine» to the snuu,' 1 and these were the first words of the Buddha." But
be it known that this verse coutams only the f:,on~ of ecstacy, produced (in the Buddha's nnnd) on the occasion of his attaming to the state of omniscience on the first d.1Yof the lunar fortnight, and reflectinJ on the mode of causal relations with ins knowledge mixed with joy. That which was spoken at the time of the Perinibbana, namely, Hearken now bhikkhus, I tell you: conditioned things are subject to decay; work out your
If J

salvation with diligence," ~
his last word. Between these rwo (e~ems) all that were spoken (by the Buddh 1] form his middle sayings. TIm", by \t" lY ~)[ first, middle, .md l ist it Is thr~fo!J. Hxw by \,ay of PI.takas is it threefold? J.n the words of the Buddha are dirided indeed into three p uts : the YimY::l-Pit3k.:l. Sutra-Pitaka.
"JS

and Abhidhtmma-Pitaka,

T,) tki.~ :fff(t Mid

!l~f.t'[cimts: _

11 [0 them. by the \-ioala.-Pi~.lka is mesa: the Pi:'iri.j!kl ge-ction. the P.lcittiY33 the: V,b1i!l.li'j,l
7

1 5.<01T'hr E'llrr.-1!OI'I'.

Y. pp.. n f'. ~ &cil ::li.e EIflIQ1U1'. ~ p.:5.

'fHE

FIRST

GREAT COUNCIL

31

of the bhikkhunls, the Mahavagga, and the Paruiiira,
ThIs 18
IS

the

OullalJagga,

called the Vinaya-Pitaka,

The collection of thirty-four suttaa, divided into three books (vuggas), forms the DighaNzkaya, the first in the order of enumeration. coliection of one hundred two suttas, compnsmg fifteen chapters, 19 The and fiftyforms the

Ma111mna-N1kaya. 20 The collection of seven thousand seven hundred and SIxty-two suttas forms the Samyutta. 21 Nine thousand and five hundred and fiftyseven+-thrs IS (lie number of suttas ru the .4.nguttara. 22 & 23 'I'he collection compnsing fifteen divisions, tu WIt, Klll1ddakaplit1w, Dhammapada, Udan«, Itwuttal.a, Buiumipa:«, V11niillf1 and Petavatthlt1 Thera- and Theli(yiilhii), Jaiol;«, Nuidesa, Pat1,Sambhzda, Apadiina, Buddharamsa, and Cariyapz~alca, IS considered as the [GLUddnka-N1,kiiya. ThIS
1.:0

called the Suttantupttlllill.

The collection corupnsIDg seven drvisions, to wit, Dhanllna-sanga{l.l. Vlbhaizga, Dhatltlratha, Pugyula-pal1Iiatli, the book named I{athiilJatthu Ya uioka, aud Pa{thdna, is called the Abhidbamma-Pitaka, taught by the perfectly EnlIghtened One. 24 & 25
J

This IS called the Abhidhamma-Prtaka. ThuB by way of Pitakas it is threefold.

32

BUDDHIST

HISTORI(,AJ~ TRADITIONS

How by way of Nikayas is it fivefold? There are five Nikayas, to wit, the Diqha, the MaJjhima, the Samyutta, the Anguttara and the

K1zuddaka. To this effect said the Anc'l.ents .
26 "Excludmg the four Nikayas begmmng with the Digha, the rest of the Buddha's word IS the Khuddaka." 1 Thus, by way of NIki1ya. It IS fivefold. How
by way of Angas (types) is It nmefold ? All the words (of the Buddha) are classified into nme types, to WIt, Butta, Geyya, Veyyakara'l').a, Gatha,

Udtina, luwitoka, Jutaha, Abbhuta, and Vedalla. ,t Herein, the dual (Sutta-) V'l.bhanga, Nuldes«, Khandhakas, Panoina, and the rest, the Mangalasutia, Ratanasutta, Nnlahosut:«, Tuoatakasutta of the Sutta-N1,piita, and other words of the Tatliagata bearing the name of Sutta should be regarded
as Sutta. All the Suttas with verses should be understood as, Geyya. In particular, all the chapters with verses III the Sam,yutta NLkaya form Geyya. The entire Abll1,dhamma P1taka, Suttas without verses, and other words of the Buddha not included in the eight types should be understood as Veyyli7~aTana, or eXpOSItIOn. The Dhemmepada~ the Theragathat the The1·Iglithli, those pJeces III the Sutta-N~pata not called Sutta and entirely
1 SumangalaVI/a8Ini, I, 58, General Introdllctlon· .. Tha.petvi Cliu. ro p'ete nlkiye Dighlliwke, tadaiifi"ql BuddhancaDIUp IlIkiyo khadd.~g

JR,&iob.'·

THE FIRST GREAT COUNCIL

33

in verse should be known as Glithii. The eightytwo Suttantas coupled with verses expressive of relIgIOUS emotions should be understood as Udiina . .One hundred and twelve Suttautas mtroduced with the words: •Thus was It smd by the Blessed One,' etc., should be understood as Itt'lJuttaka (ht., the 'Thus said ') FIve hundred and fifty birtb stories beginning wrth the Apattnaka constitute the Jiitaka All Suttantas connected with wonderful and marvellous thmgs spoken in this way: • There are, bhikkhus, four wonderful and marvellous things in Ananda,' should be understood as Abbhuta. All Suttantas in the form of queations asked through repeated attainment of delight and understanding, such as the Buttas : Cullat1edalla, Mahavedalla, Samm,iiditt1n, Sa1ckapalilza, Sanklziirabhli1aniya, Mahapunnama, etc., should be understood as Vedalla." I Thus by way of Angas (types) It is ninefold. How by way of units of text IS It eighty-fourthousandfold? To this effect said the Anc~ents 27 Eighty-two thousand from the Buddha, and two thousand from the bhikkhu [Sariputtaj-« these eighty-four thousand Dhammas I have learned. 28 There are, in the Vmaya-Pitaka, twenty-one thousand units (of text), In the
J

See The Erpo81tor, I, pp. 98.&

i-11l44B

34

BUDDHIST HISTORICAL TRADITIONS

Buttanta-Pitaka twenty-one thousand, and 10 the Ablndhamma-Pitaka forty-two thousand. 'I'hus by way or umts of text in explanation It
IS

eighty-four-thousandfold. II Of these, the Sutta containing ODetheme

1

forms one unit of text. The Sutta contammg more than one theme forms more than one umt of text, and In such cases, umts of texts are deterromen by the Dumber of such themes. In verses, each query or question asked forms a unit, and each answer forms another. In the Abhidhamma, each tribal or dual classification, as well as each classrficahon of conSClQUS intervals, forms one IlDIL of text. In the Vmaya, there are subjects, offence regar.hng the rules of conduct, tables of contents, classiflcanon of terms, intenm offence, innocence, and drvision into triplets, wherein each portion should be understood as a uuit of text." l Thus by way of units of text It IS eighty-fourthousandfold. The company of the self-controlled one, headed by Mlthakassapa, recited the Buddha's word In these and vartous other divrsions and arranged It after similar deternnnation : "ThIs ISthe Dhamma, this IS the Vmaya," etc. And they rehearsed It III seven months. At the close of the Council the great earth, encircled by the ocean, quaked repeatedly, violently, WIth It vertical upheaval everywhere; and
1 I

AllurondhrkG

Sae ThS EzpolitOT, I, p. 8'.

THE

FIRST

GREAT COUNCIL

35

themselves, as though gmng congratulations with well-felt delight at the thought: The religion of HIm who was endowed wrth the Ten Powers, has thus, by the thera Mahakassapa, been rendered capable of lasting a
lC

varIOUS wonders mamfested

penod of five thousand

years.'

ThIS IS known as the FIrst Great Oouncil.

To thzs efft3ct saLd the Anc~ents:
In this world,
29 "Wbereas (this collection) was made by five hundred, therefore It was called' That of the five hundred,' and whereas It was made by the Theras (Elders), It was also called as' That of the Theras.'
\

30 Thus III seven months the oompilation of the Dhamma, to save the whole world, was done by those (Theras) bent on the whole world's salva-

non.
31
rehgion years,''The

thera Mahakassapa bas made this 01 Suguta to endure five thousand

ReJOICIng III this thought, at the close of the Council, tile earth encircled by the ocean quaked SIXtimes. 33 Many wonderful SIgns were shown III the world in many ways. Now, SIDce (the Canon) was compiled by the theras, It was called the Thera tradition.
1

32

Bee The E:;poador,I, pp.

".aG.

36

BUDDHIST

BlSTORICAL

TRADITIONS

34 The theras who held the first Council and had (thereby) brought great blessing to the world, having lived their allotted span of lifeL entered, all, into Nibbana." 1 ;,35 Thus knowing Lhat this hfe 18 transient and bard to WID, be WIse and exert yourself to attam the everlasnng and Immortal state." Here ends tLe Chapter, called 'The First Great CounCIL,' III the Saddhammasarpgaha, COllipiled for the serene JOY and emouon of the pious.

I

MahiivGrflBa,

Cb

m.

vv 37·4.1, GeIger's Gf',/It 07tf'DfI.cl.

0/ C",lol'l,

p.I8.
I lama1l1Cl.Piilcld,kii,

p. 1Igf).

CHAPTER II
THE SECOND COUNCIL
1

Now, as days and nights,

in succession, had

passed, a century after the Parimbbana of the Exalted One, the Vajjiputtaka bhikkhus of Vesali promulgated at Vesali the Ten Points. (They were) :WhIch were the Ten Pomts?
,i

(1) That storing salt m a hom vessel (Ill order foods, when received),

10 season unsalted

was per-

m1.8sible;
(2) That taking the midday meal when the Bun's shadow showed tUJO finger~' breadth after noon, was permiss~ble ; (3) That mstt~ng the vtllage after meal, and there eating again (If mvited), 11 as perm~ss~ble ; (4) That hold~ng the Uposathu separately bhikkhus residing In the same boundary, by

was

peT11nss1.ble;
(5) That carrying out of official acts by an incomplete chapter, In an_tlCipatlOD of the consent of absent bhikkhus to be obtained afterwards, was

perm~ss~ble ;
1 Of Cullc~agg",

ell xn,

VI'IIQII" T,«II,11118 B E.XX,

pp. SB6fl.

Af.hiillClfIl" (tnt 4: tra.nslatlon)

Oh lV

38

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

(6) That It I./.Jaspermtssible

to do something

on

the precedence of the preceptor' 8 prcctice; (7) That ta.king unchurned mslk, even after meal time, was perm.issible; (8) That it was perrmssible to drink unfermented toddy; (9) 'I'hat the use of a seat not of the prescnbed SIze, if It were tmthout fringe, was permtssible; (10) That It was permtsstble to accept gold and
,dver.' ,
The king named Sisunaga, was their adherent. 1 "At the end of the son of Kalasoka,

To thts effect said the Anczents :
the tenth year of

Kalasoka's reIgn a century had passed by after the Panmbbsna of the Sambuddha. 2 At that tune many Va]]lputtaka blnkkhus shamelessly promulgated the Ten pomts at Vesali." 1
At that time the venerable Yasa, the son of Kakandafka), who was wandering through the Va]]Ian country heard : tt 'I'he Vaj]IPuttaka blnkkhus of VesalI are said to have promulgated the Ten poinss.' , And he arrived at Vesali, thinkmg: " It IS not proper that I, hearing the danger ill the Sa-sana of HIm who was gifted with the Ten Powers, should hve mactive, let me now expound the Dhamma, holding back the speakers of what lS not Dhamma." Tbere, at Vesnlr, the
1

ilfahat-',u"IV,

8-9.

THE

SECOND COUNCIL

39

venerable Yasa, the son of Kakanda, stayed at the Mahii.vana,l in the Kiitfigara Hall. Now at that time the Vajjiputtaka bhikkhus of Vesalib on .the Uposaiha day, filled a copper pot with water and placed It In the midst of the Order of bhikkhus and said to the lay disciples of Vesii.li who happened to pass by "Bestow on the Order a kahapana, or half a one, or a pada/ or a miisaka, or silver. It will be wanted for the requisites of the Order." All happened till there were In this rehearsal seven hundred bhikkhus, neither, more or less. SO IS tlus rehearsal of the VIDaya called 'That of tile seven hundred." And III the (previous) conference one hundred and twelve thousand bhikkhus mot together. In the midst of those blukkhus, as tile Thera Sabbaknnn, inspired by the venerable Yasa, the son of KakaJ;lga., and questioned by the venerable Revata, -allswmed touching the Vinaj a, the dispute on tile Ten Points, [already] decided as desired, was settled. Now the therus saul "We will recite the Dhamma and the Vinaya ' 'I'hey chose seven hundred blnkkhus who wei (' arahants, knew the three Prtakas, anrl had attained mastership lD
1 Name of a vlhira (monastery) See B CLaw, 80me K9atTtla

'inoBl
!

oj AnclImt India, pp 4647 '(Ina Pida = i of a J{ahiirnD3,

but double the 1&lu8 of miisBka', of the preceding
Olll.·

hence'

each sncceedmg COlD marks hoLlfthe value

PalJ-Eng D,ot., (P T. S ). S II. Kii.kll.Qlka. a OJ. V,na¥lI. Mau;Lvaggl, Ch XI, 1, 15; CIl. XU, !I, 9,

40

BUDDHIST

HISTORIC"AL

TRADITIONS

analysis. Just as the thera Mahakassapa. had rehearsed [the canon]. so did they sIttmg in the Valukarama and purging the Sasana, again recite the entire Dhamma and Vmaya by way of Pitakas, Nikayas, Aligas (t) pes), and units of text. 'I'Ins council was concluded after eight months.

To thtS effect satd the Anc~ents
In this world,
d ""Thereas this council was completed by seven bundred, therefore IS that rehearsal also called' that of the seven hundred,' and because there was another held III tune past this I~ called the Second. 4 & 5 The rehearsal was made famous by those theras who rehearsed it Sabbakami and f:&lha, Rcvata .. Khujjasobhrta, Yasa, and Sanaaambhuta, the SIX theras were pupils of the Thera Ananda, and had beheld the Tathagata In time past. 6 Bumann and Vasabhagii.mi, endowed with knowledge, were pupils of the Thera Anuruddha, and had beheld the Tathagata in time past. 7 All those theras, however, who held the Second CouncIl, had laid their burden, had accomplished their appointed tasks} and were free from the asavas (sms). 8 Highly powerful were these theras, Sabbakami and the rest, and they, too, shunng like the columns of :fire In thrs world! attained the Parimbbana,

THE

SE('OND

COUNCIL

41

9 Thus knowmg that this hfe IS transient and hard to win, be WIse and exert yourself to attain the everlasting and Immortal state "I Here ends the chapter, called 'TLe Second Council' III the Saddlzamm,asanl.gaha, compiled for the serene JOY and emotion of the pious.

1

Samnnlapiisiid,r.;j

r

2%

6-1SHU

CHAPTER III
THE THlRD COUNCIL

'I'wo hundred and twenty-eight years after the Parimbbana of the Sambuddha, all heretics, numbermg sixty thousand, being deprived of honour and patronage, so that they have not even enough to eat, sought that honour and patronage, themselves cut off their hair, donned the yellow robes, and went about the vrharas, entering even (the assembhes) at the time of the Uposatha aud other services. They wrought diverse cankers stain '3 , and nuisance lI1 the Sasana Therefore the Order of blnkkhus 10 the whole Jambudipa for seven years did not hold the Uposatha ceremony.' At that time Asoka, the nghteous king, was consecrated :fifteen years. The king, wishing to purge the Sasana, of SIllS, called the Order of Bhikkhus together at the Aaokarama. In that congregauon, the venerable them Trssa, Moggah's son, bemg the semoi of the 01 dar, Instructed the klDg in the doctnne. The king asked the teachers of otber VI :lWS, and discemed : "These ale none of them (proper) bhi kkhus but heretics." And
1
tlQfI"O.

Pomt.! 0/ rJulIlrotel.Y

('''mmeotdtor's

Intro , pp

5

r. (/

Mohli

VS. ~3482

'rHE

THIRD

rOUNCIL

having caused them to be expelled from the Order, he bestowed white lay-raiment upon them. Then the king said tt Xow, sir, the Siisana is purged. Let the Order of bhikkhus hold the Uposatha ceremony." And, providing a guard, he entered the city In concord the Order assembled and held the Uposatba ceremony.

To this effect said the 1"1 nClents
and twenty-eight years had passed from the Panmbbana of the Sambuddha, when Asoka became king and lord of the earth. 10 Spending a week there In the pleasant royal park he (Moggahputtaussa) Instructed the ruler good doctriue of the Bnmbuddha. 11 In this same week, the monarch sent out two yakkhas, and assembled together all the bhikkhus on the earth 12 On the seventh day he went to hIS own splendid park and arranged an assembly of the Order of bhikkhus ill Its full numbers. "1 13 The king asked all the adherents of other VIews the Ialse-behevers, and knowing (their VIews), be caused them, ill all SIxty thousand, to be expelled (from tLe Order). 14 And the king srud to the Thera (Tlssa) . "The Order I::. purged, Therefore, reverend SIr, let the Order hold the Uposatha ceremony."
9
I

.. Two hundred

For rerses 10·22

Fee

Mal,nta·"la,Ch. V.

H

265.67

44

ummarsr

HlS'lORIl'A

L 'fRADI'1'lONS

15 Providing a guard for the Order, he entered Ius fair CIty. In concord, the Older then held the Uposatha ceremony. 1 In the midst of that congregation the theia 'I'issa, Moggali's son, presented the treatise, called the Kathavatthu, refutmg the dissentient views, Even as the thera Mabakassapa and the thera Yasa (had held a Council) so did he (the thera 'I'issa), out of SIxty hundred thousand bhikkhus, select one thousand bhikkhus, who were learned 1D the three Pitakas, advanced III the (tour) Pansambhidas, and versed III the three kinds of know ledge, and the hke, and did he recite the Dhamma and the Vinaya by way of Pitakas, Nikayas, Angas, and units of text Thus In recitmg the Dbamma and the Vmaya, the great thcra 'I'issa, Moggah's son, purged the Sasana 01 all Its staius, and held the Thud Council, At the close ol the Council the great earth quaked In many ways. ThIS council ended 10 nme mon ths Tv tlus effect saul the Allc~ent8 16 "Even as tile thera Mahakassapa and the thera Yasa had held the Dhamma Council, so also did the thera 'I'issa. 17 And III the Hall of this Council, the thera TIS:,a. 'let Ioi th tile book, called the Katha.uuthu, for the future ciuslnng of all diaseuttent VIews.
1 FlJr ver.eb 14.11i, See MahilLuIII6a, Ch

V vv 273 U.

THE

THIRD

COUNClL

45

m TI.lU~ was tlns council of the Dhamma under the protection of kmg Asoka ended by the thousand bhrkkhus in nine months." I 19 All those the, as, too, holding the Thud Council and doing many good to the world, lived until the span of their h ves and then entered Into
Nrbbana.

20 Thus knowmg that this hle IS transient and hard to WJDt be WIse and exert yourself for the attamment of the everlasnug and Immortal state. Here ends the chapter, called 'The Thud Council ' III the Saddhammasamgaha, compiled for the serene JOY and emotion of the pIOUS.
1

For verses 16-16. Spe MahiivamslJ.

Oh V. vv 277·279

CHAPTER
THE ACCBPTANCE OF THE

IV

CETIYAPABBATAVlBaBA

Heic this ~s the connected story.
The tbera 'I'issa, Moggali's SOD, havmg held this 'I'lnrd Council, thought thus: "'Where, in future, IS the Basana to be well founded?" And on reflectwn he beheld: "(The religion) will be well founded 10 tile western countries;' DIStnbutmg the task among those blnkkhus he sent them, one here and one there. He sent the thera Ma]Jhantlka to Kasmira and Gaudhara. (saymg): "Yon WIll go to this country, and found here the Basana." WIth similar words he sent the thera Mahadeva to Malusamandala, the thera Bakkluta to VaO:1ViiSl, the thera Dharnmarakklnta of the Yona country to Apala.ntaka, the thera M,tbadha.mmarakkhlta to Maharattha, the thera Maharakkhita to the Yona country, the thera Majjluma to the HImalayan region, and the two theras, Sonaka and Uttara to Suvanuabbumi. He sent the them Malnnda with his comrades, the theras Itthlya, Uttiya, Sambala, and Bhaddasala, to the Island of Lank~L (saying) "you will go to the Island or Lanka, and found there the Hadana I, And all who proceeded to differ eut direcnons, 'vent, each III a group of five only (because) In
I

.\CUEP1 \NCB OF CFT[YAI'Ann

\TAYIITUI \

4.7

the western countnes a company of five bhikkhus was declared to be sufficient for the purpose of ordination.

Hence to this effect saul the Anc'/.ents
1 "The thera Moggahputta, the Illuminator of the religion of the Conqueror, bnnging the (Third) Council to an end, looked into the future. 2 He beheld the founding of the religion In adj acent countnes, and in the month of Katnka (KartIka) he sent those theras, one here and one there. 3 The thera Majjhantika be sent to Kasmira and Gandhara, the thera Mahadevu he sent to

Mahisamandala.
4 To Vanavasl be sent the thera named Ra.kkhita, and to Ap.irantaka (the thera) named Dhamrnarakkhita the Yona. 5 To Mahlirattha he sent the thera named MulJii.dhamrnarakkhltn., but the thera Mahiilakkblta he Bent to the country of the Yonas. 6 He sent the thera MaJ] hun a to the Himalayan region, and to Suvannabhiimi he sent the two theras, Sona and Uttara. 7 The great thers Mahmda and lns disClplesthe theras Ittlnya, U ttiya, Sambala and Bhaddasala, 8 These five theras he sent with the charge: Tl You WIll found, III the delightful Island of TJaIika, the delightful Rule of the Conqueror? " ]
1 Mahli'VQll180,

Ch XI1,

,"v

1·8

48

m-DDHI':.'I

HJf;TOTIH.'-\L

l'lHDI'fIONS

Cbarged by his tencher and by the Order of bbikkhus. "You will go to the Island of Lanka, aud found there the religion," tbe thera Malnnda, however, pondered: "Is It the proper time now to go to the Island of Lanka?" 'I'hen Sakka, king of the gods, approached the thera, and said thus "Reverend Sir, king Mutaatva IS dead; now reigns the great king Devanampiyatiasa. And by the Sammasambuddha have you been predicted , In future. a bhikkhu named Malnnda will convert the island of Lanka.' Therefore, Reverend SIr, this is the fittmg time to go to the excellent Island I, too, shall he your helper." I To this effect sOl(l the AnClents 9 "At that time the thera named Mahmda "as the senior of the Order 'I'In-re were the four (other) tberas-e-Ittlnya, Ettiya, Bhaddaaala and Sambala. 10 And (there were) the rmraculously gifted Samm)el a Sumana, mighty III the SIX supernormal powers, and the lay disciple Bhanduka, the seventh among them, who bad discerned the

ti nth.
11 They, like royal swans in the air, were sent forth from the Island of Jamhu. Thus the theras rose up and alighted on the most excellent city.
1

Cf Ma1liir;alllIG

Ch, XIII, vv 12,1516,

Samanlapiisiid,kii,

p 319

ACCEPTANCE OF C~TIYAPABBATAVrHAHA

49

12 In front of the best city, on the peak of a mountain which resembled the clouds, they stayed, as do the swans high above 10 the sky.' Let it be known that ill the two hundred and thirty-sixth year after the Pannibbsna of the Sammsssmbuddha the venerable thera Mahmda who had thus come with Ittlnya, lind the rest, and stayed on the Mrssaka-mountain, gamed a footmg in this Island And on that day, III the Island of Lanka, the festival called Jettamiila, took place Announcing the festival and oommanding hI'3 mimsters : "Celebrate the Iesnval,' tne great kmg Devanatppryatissa came out of the city WIth a retmue of forty thousand men, and being desirous of enjoymg the pleasure of the clrise, went to the place where the Miasaka-mountatu was Now, J deity residing on that mountain thought "I Will make the theras visible to the king," and aSSUIDtng the form of a red deer, began to roam, eatmg' the grass as It were, not far from the king, Then the king struck (a sound) at his bowstring. Along the way to the Ambatthala the deer began to flee. Pursumg closely, the king ascended the Ambatthala. The deer, too, disappeared at a place not far from the theras, When the thera Mahmda had beheld the king drawing near, he resolved: "Let the kmg alone see me, Dot others," and said: H 'I'issa, 'I'issa, come here.
It.

1

For verses (J-lS, sao Dipaoam.sa,

ell

XII,

vv 86-40

1-1IMB

50

BUDDHIST

Hn:lTORICAL

TRADITIONS

On bearing this, the king thought: "There IS none born in this island who can address me by my name, but this shaven-headed fellow weanng the yellow patch-work garment addresses me by my name. Who then shall be human or not human?" Tbe thera replied . "Sama'Q,as are we, 0 great king, disciples of the lung of righteousness. From compassion towards you are we come here from the Island of Jambn. " As soon as the king heard the thera's word, he instantly laid hIS arrow aside and, wlnle speaking III Iueudly term, took Ins seat Oll one side .1s zt lUIS been ~al(l "The king 10) mg Ius au ow aside took Ins seat on one side, and as he was seated he exchanged friendly greetmgs connected with vaned meamngs." At the very moment those forty thousand men came and surrounded the kmg. Then to him the thera showed the SlX other persons also When the kmg had beheld these, he asked "When did these come here?" "(They came) WIth me, o great king." "But are there now in the island of Jambu also other samanas hke these?" " There are, 0 great kmg. The Island of Jambu is now-a-days glowing WIth yellow lobes and stirred by the wind of saints, .." So saying he uttered this verse:

ACCEPTANCF, OF CETIYAPABBATAVIHARA

51

If Great IS the numher of disciples of the Buddha who are arhants, learned in the three kmds of knowledge, gifted with the supernormal powers, skilled III reading the thoughts of others and free from the asavas.'·

" Reverend S11', by what way are ) ou corne here?" (And smce the answer was:) " Neither by water nor bv land, 0 great lung," the king understood tha t they had come through the air, The thera put a question on the sumle of a mango, and the king answered. Thmkmg "Tbe king IS Wise, and Win be able to understand the Dhamma," the thera then recited the Ciilahatthtpadopnlnu Suttr!.l At the end of the disccnrse the king with tLe forty thousand beings came unto the three refuges. " Reverend SIr, tomon ow I wI11 send n chanot, Please mount thn t charrot and come." So saying, the king paid hun homage and departed No sooner had the h.lllg departed than the thera ordered the SJ.lmll1eHt Suman.i " Surnana, come. Announce the time of hc.mng the preachmg of the Dhamma." "How £.11', Reverend SIr, shall I make the time to be heard when I announce It?" "Over all the Island of Lanka." "It 1S well, Reverend 811'," replied the Samanela, and be, entering the Ioui th stage of meditation, based on apperception, rose np, fixed Ins attention and

52

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

with hIS mind concentrated and announced thrice the time of hearing the preaching of the Dhamma, makmg It audible over the whole of the Island of
Lanka. When the kmg heard this sound, be sent a message to the theras (asking) : "Reverend SIr, has there been any trouble? There was no trouble for us as we wish to preach the word of the Buddha, we have announced (the time) of bearmg the preachmg .,

When the earth-gods beard the summons of the samanela, they echoed it, 111 this way the call rose up (gradually) to Brahma's heaven. Because of the SUl1lIDOnS thei e came together a great assembly of gods. When the thera had beheld this great assembly of gods, he recited the Samacitta Suttanto ) At the end of the discourse the gods without number were converted to the doctrine, and many nagas and supannas came unto the refuges. When the night bad passed, the kmg sent II chariot for the theras. The charioteer. keeping the chanot OIl one SIde, mformed the theras "Reverend SI1", the chariot is brought; mount and we WIll drive (to the City)." "vVe will not mount the chanot : go thou, we will follow thee." Baying this, the theras rose into the all' and descended to the east of Anuradhapura at the place
1

See Anguttara.NlklJl/li. I. pp !l3.tlli.

ACCEPTANCE

OF UETIYAPABBATAVIBXRA

53

where the first cetiya (afterwards stood), And the cetiya, which was built on the spot where the theras first alighted, is called Pathamaka-cetiya the First Shrme. The chanoteer saw that the theras had come first, and had fastened girdles and put on robes. As he saw, he was very much gladdened at heart, came and informed the kmg: "Lord, the theras are come." The king enquired , "DId they mount the charIot?" " 'I'hey did not, lord. Moreover, they starting after me have come earlier, and are staying at the eastern gate." The king, too, went, paid homage to the theras, took the alms-bowl from the thera Mahmda's hand, and with great honour and , homage led the thetas into the City and into the palace. The thera, seeing the Immovable seat prepared, and thmkmg, cc the rehgion of our Teacher WIll he founded all over the Island of Lanka as this Immovable seat on the enrth," took Ius seal. The king lnmself served the theras with excellent nee-soup and with food bard and soft. The thera having finished the meal, recited the Petaoattliu, the VlIllii,IlUwtthll, and the Saccasamyutia causing the shower of Jewels of the Dhamma, so to speak, to the kmg and hIS attendants.' The five hundred women, hearing the preaching of the doctrine by the thera, attained
1

Bee S."'IIt1tta·N,kiifllJ, V, pp. 414·78.

54

BUDDHIRT

HISTORW.HJ

TRADITIO~S

to the first stage of snnctificauon (r.e., Sotapatti) At the eud of the preachmg of the Dhamma, 111 the evemng, t1le mnnsters led the theras to the great "Megha\O,tna-pal'k The theras stayed In the
Meghavaua-paik. When the night had passed, the king, too, visited the theras and asked about the comfort in their rest. He also asked "Is an iiriuna allowed to the Order of bhikkhus ?" The thera replied : ,. It IS allowed, 0 great king." The king beiug pleased, .mrl tnking a golden vase, poured water over the hand of the thera and dedicated the great ~Iegba'iana-park, As the water fell (on the ground). the earth quaked. For a week the tbera preached the Dhamma. Nine thousand five hundred persons were cOIH~lLed The thcra went to the Cetiya mountain, and the kmg also carne there. That very day, a minister named Anttha With Ins fifty-fixe elder and younger brothers, after pa) lI1g homage to the lung, said thus "Lord, I wish to [receive the pllbba)Jii from the theta." The long g,ne Inm permission (saj ing) "It must be \\e11 Stud, receive the pabbajja," and made the thera agree On that same day the thera conferred the PalJbaJ]ii All these men attained to Arahamshtp even In the shaving hall. 1'(1 ilus Cl1ld HrHi the
IlititlltS:

] 3 "·When the king, on the same day, had made a begn.mng with the work of building Slxty-

ACCEPTANCE

OF CETIYAPABBATAVIHIRA

55

eight rock-cells about (the place where) the Kanjaka-cenya (afterwards stood), 14 he returned to the CIty; but the theras remained in that spot, gOll1g at the appointed tune, full of compassion (for the people), to the CIty to beg alms there. 15 When the work on the rock-cells was fimshed, on the full-moon day of the month of Asagha, the king came and g,1Ve the vihara to the theras as a consecrated offering 16 When the thera, who had passed beyond the bound ines (of evil) had established the boundanes for the thirty-two malakas and the vihsra, then did he, on the Vel} same day, 17 III the Tuiubaru-malokr, which was marked OUli as the first o[ all, confer the upasampada on all those who were weary of the pabbaJJii. 18 And these SIxty-two arahauts, during the rainy-season. takmg up their abode all together on the Oenya-mountam, showed Javoiu to the king (by their teaclnug).' 1 Here ends the chapter, called t The Acceptance of the Cehyapabbatnvihara,' 1Il the Saddhammasa'Y{£gaha, compiled for the serene JOY and emotion of the pIOUS.
1 See Mahiivallua, Cb XVI H Iblll • P 116

12 17, For trllD~lltlUn eel Geller,

CHAPTER

V

THE FOURTH COUNCIL

Thereafter on the day when the relics of the nght collar-bone (of the Buddha) were laid down III the Thuparo.ma, those blnkkhus who cormng from the City han received tbe Pabba)Jli, numbered thIrty thousand in all. Then on the day! when the great Be-tree was planted, the queen Anula with five hundred meideus and five hundred women of the harem, thus numbering a thousand of the womenfolk, having recei ved the PabbuJJii from the 'I'heri Sarpgharrutta, attained, In no nme, to arahantebip WIth her retinue. The kmg's nephew (sister's son) Auttha, too, with five hundred men having received the Pabbajja from the thera, attained to Arahantslnp shortly Then the king asked the thera Mahmda": "Is the Slisana estabhshed 10 the Island of Lanka! Reverend Sl1'?" "It IS established, 0 great king ; but the roots of the Slisana have not as yet descended." "Reverend SIr, when will the roots be called as descended?" "Only when a son, born of the parents inhabitmg the island of Lanka, having received the PabbaJJu and having acquired the Vinaya in the Island of Lanka, recitea Itt shall

1 HE JlOUn'fII

COUNCIL

57

the roots of the Siisana be called as descended." It Is there, Reverend Sa, such a bhikkhu?" 'f There is, 0 great king, 3. blnkkhu named Arittha the great, who IS able III thrs respect" In thIS connection, Reverend Sir, what should be done by me?" "A ball 1$ t) be built, 0 great king." "It is well," replied the kmg. A.nd at the place where the panvena built by the munster Meghavannabhaya stood, when be with bIS royal might had a hall built like that built by the great kmg Ajatasattu at the time of the Great Oouncil, and had all the musicians engaged to display their respective skill, he thought: «r We WIll see the Slisana descending," and being attended by many thousands of hIS people reached the ThiipaJ'ama. At tbat tune one thousand bhikkhus assembled in the Tbiiparama. Facmg the south a seat was prepared for the great thera Mahmda. The preacher's seat, Iacing the nortb was prepared for the great thera Artttha Now, asked. by the thera Mahmda, the great them Anttha, paying homage to the elder bhikkhus, took Ins proper seat accordmg to Ins Lank Srxty-erght thetas, headed by the thera Mabmda, were seated round the preacher's seat The kmgs younger brother named thera Mantabbaya thought " WIth utmost endurance 1 WIll learn tbe Vmaya," and he witb fi ve hundred bhikkhus remained seated also round the preacher's seat (prepared) for the great thera Anttha. And the remaining bbikkhus including the king and
II

8-1S44B

58

nnonrns r rus romc.u.

IRI\DlTIO~S

their attendants were seated in the seats assigned to them, 'I'hen the venerable thera Anttua the great spoke on the source of the Vmaya , "At that tune the Exalted Buddha was staying 011 [the bank of) the VeHl.liJara, at tbe foot of the N abiu PUC1inandn " And as the source of the Vlllaya was spoken by the venerable theta Anttha, there \\8S a great sound in the sky, flashes of hghtlllng 1111expectedly shone Iorth, gods shouted applause and the great earth encn cled by the OLean quaked Thus when were uiamiested many woudeis, the venerable thera Anttba, surrounded by tile sixtyeight great thoras who bad each lollowei s nud were free from the asavas, with the thera Malnnda at their head, and by the sixty thousand blnkkhus besrdes, expounded, all the first great pavarana-d.rj 10 the month of Kattika (kartrkn), III the monastery of the Thiip'i.tii.ma, the Vmayn-Prtaka wlnch hngutu.is the compa-siou of the Teacher, «spl.uns the reason for the Ex.ilted One's ad momuuns, and removes the scuffling of acnous bodily and vocal Even as the the ther.i Mahakassapa and the theta Yasa, ana the thera Tissa, Moggah's sun, had rehearsed the Dhamma and the Vinaya by W,lY of Pitakas, Nikayas, Angas, and units 01 text, so did the great tnera Malnnda, while rehearsing the Dharnma ana the Vmaya, hold the Fourth Counoil, making the root of the Siuiuu: descended in the Island of Lanka When the council came to

THI~

L"Ol'HTH

COUNCIL

5U

a close, Hie great earth quaked 111 many ways. Tim, council ended In an indefimte nrue.

To th'ts effect sa'td the A nc'tents
19 "When two hundred and tlnrty-eiglu years bad passed by [I lter the attainment of the Parmi hbana by the Sauibhuddha, Pryatissaka became a king 20 Even as the theta Mahukas'lapa and Yasa, and 'I'issn had held the Dhamma Council, so also did Malunda 2L 'I'he best doctrine of the Couqueroi , the learnmg (of the Scnptures), Its practice and ught comprehension did the great thcr a .\fclhmda. 23 Exp)am III the l'll,lIld of I.J8.11ku, a.nd «H1 he', the great :-lage ol the island or Lanka, who was hke the Teacher III Lanka, 11lll1Y wollaies to Lanka. 23 Tile Rlxt) -erght gre Itt hems, who havmg utmost endurance .l<he"nhlerl, were all leaders of separate compnmc-, and were the disciples ot the King of Bightecusuess 24 They were free Irorn tbe Rsavas, controlled m their senses, skrlled m the three k111(18 of knowledge and gifted with the supernormal powers, themselve- knowing the highest good preached It to the king 25 These grent snges, holding the Fourth Council and doing many good to the world, entered into Ntbbana, shimng like the columns of fire.

bO

IlC"DDHlf,'l'

HJl-.TORll vt, 'lR.\DI'llOK"S

26 Thus knowing that this hfe is transient and hard to win, be WIse and exert yourself for tho attamrnent of the everlastmg and Immortal state. Here ends the chapter, called' The Fourth Council,' Ul the Stlddh~lnmasan."gaha, compiled for the serene JOY and emotion of the pious.

CHAPTEU, \'

1

THE ACCOuNT

OF IHB "WRITING OF 'rHE 'rHRlm PITAKAS IN BOOKS

After the attaiument of the Parimbbaua by those theras, others, such as, 'I'issa, Dantu, Kalasumana, Dighasumana, and the rest, who w ere drsciples of those thei as, as well as the disciples of the great thera Alit tha, having thus formed a succession of teachers as stated above, brought this Vmaya Pitaka down to the present time Hence to tlns effect It bas been said , " After the 'I'lnrd Council (the Vmaya-Pitaka) was carried to tlns Island of Lanka hy Mahmda and others Having learnt from Mahinda, drd the thera Arlttha and others carry It for some time. 'I'herealtei It has been earned auocesarvely up to the present LIme by their disciples through a succession of teachers. " Where was It eetabhehed? It was eetabhshed among such persons III whom even as OIl poured III an Ivory pot does not. ooze even a httle, RO was It complete III text and meaning, and who WPI e mindful, of right conduct, resolute, modest, consciennous and anXIOUS for tl ammg 'I'hus It should be understood. Therefore, m order to establish the Vmaya Pitaka, the Viuaya should be mastered by a blnkkhu anxious for traimng, after

62

BUDDHIl:ll'

HIS'fORW<\L

TRADlTIOlI.S

consrdenng the advantage of learning It 'I'he advantage at learniug the Vinayn IS tlns .\ person expert in the Vuiaya-learnmg deserves tln. positiou of parents of the Iaithlul sons of (goo I) families. This then is utihsed by them for thrn nntianon, ordination, accomphshment in all kinds of pracuces aud good behaviour. Besides, because oC Ius Vinaya-learmng his own body of morahtj becomes well guarded and well protected; hr protects those blnkkhus who are scrupulous b) nature; 10 the Order, he IS known as sellpossessed ; be reasonably balds backs his 0PPtlnents to complete suppression. And whatever good deeds based upon self-restramt have been explained by the Exalted One, a person expert III the Vmaya mherns those deeds, for they are based upon the norm of good conduct. Tins was also said by the Exalted One Disciplme IS for the purpose of restraint, which IS for the PlIlpOSC at absence of remorse, which IS for the purpose of gladness, winch IS fat the purpose 01 rapture, WhICh IS for the purpose of repose, WbICh IS for the purpose of bliss, which IIfOl the purpose at ooncentranon, wlnch IS fo: the purpose 01 knowing and seeing the truth, which IS for the purpose at disguat, which IS for the purpose of dispassion. winch IS for the purpose of emancipation, which IS for the purpose of knowing and seeing emancrp.iuon, which If! for the purpose of birthless Panmbbana, For such purpose IS

WRITl~G

OF THREE

Pl1'Ah.Al:. L\

BOOKS

G3

1::1

the discourse (on the Disciplme), fur such purpose the eonsnltation, for such purpose 1& the groundwork, for such purpose IS the uttennvene-,s, namely, tile emancipation ot tile mind devoid of grnspmg.' Therefore one should exert fur the Vinayalearning To this effect has It been sard : 1 The king Devanumpryaussa, lord of Lanka, virtuous and Wise, reigned forty years 2 After hi'> death, his younger brother, known as Utnya, became 1uler an d ruled in splendid Anudidhapura. 3 Mahanaga, the Vice-regent, Yataln. of great might, Gothabhnya of gl eat merit, and Kakavarma the energetic 4 These four kings as (his) sons and grandsons, reigned successrvely WIth piety III pleasant Mahagama. " Three hundred seveutv -SIX ycai R after the attainment of the Parunbhaua by the Exalted One. the great king Dutthagannm-ahhayn g.uned sovereignty over the island of Lanka When he had built the Mnncavnttr-vihnm, he made the Lohapasada rune-stoned When he had completed the Great 'I'hilpa overlaid with gem-dusts, he assembled the bhikkhus among whom the arnhnnts were muety-six kOtIS, and bestowed (on them) a
.f

1

01

Vuuddhlmagga,

Vol I

64 great

BUDDHl~'l'

R.ISTORICAL TMDlTIONS

he had reigned piously and Justly twenty-four years In Anuradhapura he was I eborn, as one awakened hom sleep, In the Tusna heaven at the expiry of Ins life term. At that time, the Orcler of blnkkhus residing III the island of Lanka mastered the entire saying of the Buddha,
gIft. When compnsed 111 the three Prtakas, wrth text and the commentary thereon, which for the growth of the Sasana was orally handed down through a succession (of teachers).

To tim effect said the Ancients
5 •• When
two hundred

aeventy-srx

years

had passed siuce tbe attainment of tLe Panmbbana by the Sambuddha, Dutthagnrmm became king.
Dutthagamim-abhaya, virtuous and WIse, reigned 6

lord In Lanka

of

Lanka,

twenty-four

years. 7 Thus the lord of the eai th, doing many mentonous deeds, was, after the dissolntion of Ins body, reborn with knowledge 1Il the 'I'usita !leaven." [The story of the birth of great king Dutthagum llll-abhaya.] Wueu fifty-seven years bad pas bed BIBee tile founding of the Great 'I'hupa, the great King Vattagtunun-abhaya reigned in the island of Lanka. When tlns kmg had built ,a great vihara at the Abhayagiri, he erected III that viliara a great Ceuyu
to the extent of the Great 'I'hupu, with a reuc

WRITING

OT·' THREE

PI1.'AKAS IN BOOKf4

65

(chamber), and dedicated It to the Order of bhrkkbus headed by the Thera Mahaussa A t that time the Order of bhikkhus residing in the Island of Lanka realised that there would be the decline of the Susana and of the people, and m tile Mahavihara came together all the blnkkhus who were expert III the Dhamma, expert III the Vinaya, learned, and advanced in analytic insight. 'I'heu the great king Vattagamml-abhaya went to i the Mabavlhara and approached the Order of bhikkhus. Having approached, he paid homage to the Order of bhikkhns and took his seat on one side. Then the OJ der of blnkkhus said to the kmg : " 0 great kmg , the entire saymg of the Buddha comprised III the three Pitakas, with text and the commentary thereon, which was orally handed down through a succession (of teachers) has been even now banded down orally. In future, there WIll he the dechne of the Siisana and of the people and the entire saying of the Buddha, comprised in the three Prtakas, WIth text and the commentary thereon, WIll be lost. Therefore the cutn e saying of the Buddha, comprised in the three Pitakas, with text and the commentary thereon, should now be wrrtten down in books ,. " Reverend Sir, what should be done by me 1Il tIJIs matter?" "A hall should be built and all the leaves should be provided for tLe books, 0 great kIng." " It IS well, Reverend Sir," replied the king. And III the Mahftvibii.rn when be with his
9-134-lB

66

DCDDHI.5T

HISTORIC.\L

TRADITIONS

royal might had a hall built like that built by the great kmg A.Jatasattu at the time of the Great Council, and had aU the leaves provided for books, he caused highly precious seats to be laid down III the middle of the hall, and bade Ins people mform the Order of bhikkhus : "My work IS finished, Reverend se.::
Then out of bhikkhus who were many hundred thousands III number, the Order of bhikkhus chose many thousand elder bbikkhus, expert in the leannug of the three Prtakas, advanced In analytic insight able to refute the threefold knowledge (ot the Vedas), and the hke. Then the elder bhikkhus took tlJ(,Jf respective seats assigned to them. Even as the thera Mahakassapa and the thera Yasa, and the theta TI8SJ. and the thera ~Iah1I1Ja wlule rebearsmg the Dhamrna and the YinJ) a had rehear-ed them by way of Prtakas, Nlkayac::, Angaf'. and units of [ext. so drd the Order of blnkkhus, while causing the Dhamma and the YmU)3 to l e wruten down III books from what bad been orally handed down, cause the Buddha's saying, compnsed in the three Pi takas and known U'3 tlnDhaunna and the Vmaya, with text and tile commentary thereon, to be written down In book ... , and hold it as the "FIfth Council enablmg till' Sii8ana to endure a period of five thousand years When the wrinng of the Dhnmma was completed, the great ear th quaked III many wa~ s. 'I'hrs wrmng of the three PH.1l\.lS wa= completed III one year.
\

WRITl1\G

OF THREE

PI'l'AKAS
.1

IN BOOKS

67

To this effect said the .Jnclcnts
8
had passed SInce the attainment

When four hundred and thirty-three years of the Panmbbana by the Bambuddha, Vattagi1mml became king, 9 The Order of blnkkhus who resided in Lanka looking at the future, found that there would be the Iallmg away of beings, and the bhikkhus then came together 11.) All of them were expert III the three Pitakas, advanced ill analytic insight, free from the asavas, self-controlled, and highly skilled in the V maya. 11 In that Mnhavihfu a, the elder blukkhus assembled and took their respective seats assigned to them according to their ranks 12 The text of the three Pitakas and the commentary thereon did the most WIse blnkkhus hand down orally in former times 13 As recited III the Councrls, all the three Pitakas did these theras rehearse together WIth the commentary thereon. 14 In order that tLe doctrine might endure long and the Siisaua might prosper, (they were) made capable of lasting a period of five thousand years 15 The entire Vinaya as recited did the theras, skilled III the Vmaya, cause to be written down in books
1 Cj Dipol'amsa, Cb XX. 2024. Ch XXXIII, vv 100,102 rOI verses

12, 21, see Mal.ava-mBa,

uS

uuunuisr

lllS~U1tlCAL 'l'HADl'llUNo

](; The entire Suua-Puaka as recited did the therus, skilled III the Suttautu, cause to be wutton down In books, 17 And the Ablndhammu-Pitaka as recited did the theras, skilled III the Abludhamum, cause to be wnttcn down III books. 18 The entire 'I'heiavada and the enure commentary thereon did they band down orally and cause them to be written down lU books. 19 When the \\ ntmg was completed, the great eartb quaked, and vanous wonders manifested themselves III many ways in this world. 20 All these theras having written down the three Pitakas and doing many good to the world, h ved then' allotted span of life and entered into Nlbbana. 21 Thus did Vattagamull-abbaya reign III Lanka tv, elve ) ears, and, at the beginning, five months 2:3 Thus the lord of earth doing many mentOrlOUS deeds, was, alter the disaolution of his body, reborn in heaven WIth knowledge, g3 Thus knowmg that life IS transient and hard to WiD, be wise and exert youisell to attain the everlasting and immortal state Here ends the Chapter, called 'The Account of the 'Vriting of the Three Prtakas III Books,' III the Saddhammlisaillguha, compiled for the serene JOY and emotion of the piOUS

UHAPTEH VII
THE ACCOUNT OF TBB TRANSLATION OF THE A'fTHAKAT1U OF THE fl'HREE PITA'KAS

FIve hundred and sixteen years after the writmg of the three Pitakas, a king named MaMnama reigned ID the Island of Lanka. At that time, a young brahmana was born 111 a brahmana family III the neighbourhood of the Be-terrace in the Middle country in Jambudipa. Bkilled 10 all the sciences and versed III the three Vedas, he wandered through villages, towns, count! ies, and ciues III Jambudipa, and wherever learned men, samanas, and brahmanas, lived, he would vrsrt those places and dISCUS., (with them). Questions asked by him, others were not able to explain, but he would ans wet q uesnons put by other s. Thus going all around Jnrubudipa, lie came to a vihara In that vihsrn hved many hundred blnkkhus. 'I'he senior of the Order ol those bhikkhus was a venerable theta named Rcvata, the foremost of those who were free from u::uvas, possessed of analytical msrght, and capable of crushing the views of their opponents. Now, the young brahmana repeatmg a hymn day and mght, became perfect in all Its component parts. Then the thera listened to the recrtation of the brahmana, and thought thus: "Ttus brahmana IS of profound

70

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

knowledge. It behoves me to convert him ," Then (the thera) addressing him, said thus "0 brahmana, who IS this who IS braying like an ass?" The brahmana replied: "0 Recluse, you know not then the meaning conveyed III the bra v of an ass." When (the thera) rejoined "Yes, I know." The brahmana asked the thera regardmg all knotty points, found In the three Vedas and III the fifth (branch of brahmanical learnmg, namely,) the Itihasa, the sense of which neither he would find nor did hIS teacher realise As usual, the thera became versed III the three Vedas, but then as he was possessed of analytical insight, It was not a difficult thing for him to answer those quesnons, and when he had answered those questiona then and there, he asked the brahmana : " 0 brahmana, many quesuons I have been asked by you, let me also now ask you only one question, (I think) )OU WIll answer It." "Yes, Recluse, ask, I WIll answer." From the C~ttayamaka I the thera asked this q uestion : " A unit of conSClOUSneE-S hICh functions, and W has not yet disappeared, WIll that unit of consciouaness disappear, will that unit not Iunction? Or else, a unit of consciousness WhICh \\111 disappear, WIll not function, WIll that UnIL of consciouaness Iuucuon, Will that unit DOt dISappear?" The brahmana, unable to make out Its
1

CornprIse,1 10 the Yama~a (SectIon

VIIn of the Abh,dhamma.

pItaka.

A1'THAKATH!

OF THHEb

PITAKAS

71

meaning

asked:

II

What

is

this,

Recluse?"

" Brahtnana, it is the Buddha's manta" a Can you impart it to me? .. " 0 Brahmans, we can
Impart it to him who on receiving ordination wants to take it." Then the brahmans asked for ordination for the sake of the manta. The them ordained him and admitted him into the Order. The thera then taught him the whole of the Buddha's saying; comprised ID the three Pitakas,

To this effect said the Ancients
1
nA

1:

youth was born III the neighbourhood of the terrace of the great Be-tree, who was accomphshed III the' VIJJa ' and' sippa,' and versed III the three Vedas. 2 Possessed of great aptitude 10 attaining acquirements, indefatigable as a schismatic dISputant, and himself a schismatic wanderer over Jambudipa, he estabhshed hnnself III the character of a disputant. S He carne to a certain vihara, and was 111 the habit of rehearsmg, by night and by day, with clasped hands, a discourse WhICh he had learnt perfectly III all ItS component parts, and sustained throughout 10 the 'lame lor ty strain 4 A certain mahathera, Revata, becoming acquainted With him there, thought " 'I'lns individual is a person of profound knowledge; It will be worthy (of me) to convert him."
1 Mahtillam!a (Turnour ed I, pp 250.251 Verses

brahmana

9·10 show a

B(llDowhll ClUferent roadlDg IQ the tel>.t

7:2 5

BUDDBl~'l'

HISTORICAl.

TRAlHTlONS

enquired : " 'Who is this who IS braymg like an ass?" (The brahmana) replied to him· "Thou canst define, then, the meanmg conveyed III the bray of asses." 6 On (the thera) rejoining , "I can define It," (the brahmana) exhibited the extent of the knowledge he possessed. (The thera) answer ed each of his proposinons and pointed out III what respect they were fallacious. 7 Being refuted, he said ""VeIl then, He

descend to tIly own creed."

And the thera ex-

plamed to him a passage from the Ablndhnmma (The brahmana) could not divine the mcamug

of that (passage)
enquired : WbOBf' manta is this ? " (TIle thera) replied. II It IS the Buddha's manta." On (the former's) exclaimmg "Impart It to me," (the latter replied.) "Take
ct

8

(The

brahmann)

ordination." 9 He who bad been refuted on the aforesaid grounds obtained ordination for the sake 01 the manta. The them ordained him and taught him the Kammatthiinas (grounds for contetnplanon), 10 Having been ordained he learned the three Pitakas, and became as renowned as the sun or the mOOD. 11 As be was as profound III his eloquence (ghosa) as the Buddha himself, (they) conferred on him the appellation of Buddhaghosa, (1 e., the

~'J"rll-\KATHI OF TH.RFE PITAKAS

73

)

voice of the Buddha); and throughout the world Ghosa became as renowned as the Buddha. 'I'henceforwaid throughout the world tlns bhikkhu, known as the Thera Buddhaghosa, became renowned. Then 111 that vihara, he composed an ongmal work call cd the Nanodaya. He also wrote a oommentmy on the Dhammasangam, called the Atthastilmi, .unl then he commenced to compile n. Pallitatthakatha (r.e , a general commentary on the three Prtakas). Then the venerable Thera Renda seeing this, said thus " Friend Buddhaghosa, here III Jambudipa, the text alone of the three Puakas bas been preserved, the commentary thereon and tbe oprmons of teaciiers (acanyavada) are not extant here, But the Sinhalese commentancs, composed III the Sinhalese language by Mahmda who bad previously consulted the account given b) Sanputta ana others, and authenticated at the three COUDCIls,are extant m the Island 01 Sihala Bepau mg thither, and exannmng the same, translate (them) into the dialect of Magadha It WIll be an act conducive to the welfare of the whole world Having been thus advised, Buddhaghosa became glad and sansfied, and when be, paymg homage to Ins preceptor and the Order of blnkkhus, had obtained then penrnssron, be all Ins way reached Nagapattana Then Sakka, klllg of the gods, offered him a myrobalan Irurt and a pen, and departed Lohis owu abode 'I'hen Buddhagbosa
10-1344B

i4

BUDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADlTIONS

boarded a ship, and on hIS way he met the venerable Thera Buddhadatta on the great ocean and held conversation with him Thereafter he reached Lankapattana, 111 the reign of this king Mnhanama When he had visited the Order of bhikkhus ll1 the Mahavihara III Anuradhapura, and approached the Thera Samghapala III the Mahapadhana Hall, he listened to the entire Smhalese commentary and the 'I'heravada, and became convinced <t Till"! conveys the true meamng of the doctrine of the Buddha; lord of Dhamma." And in that VI hara having assembled the Order, he petitioned thus , Reveiend members of the Order, I wish to translate tbe commentaries, give me access to all your books" Then the Order of bhi kkhus, for the purpose of testing his quahfieanons. gave only two stanzas, saymg . "Havmg satisfied OUl selves with til) quahfications, we WIll let thee have fill our books" Then the venerable Buddhaghosa consultmg the tevt of the three PI takas and the commentary thereon, compiled a book called the V1.sudd1ltmagga. Thereupon the gods III order to make the gift of bl~ wisdom known among the multitude, rendered that book mvisible. He recomposed a second copy, and this, too, did the gods make mvisible He recomposed jor the thud time. At that moment the gods restored the other two copie- also. There were then three copies. Thereupon the venerable Buddhagbosa taking the three copIes, presented them to the Order of

A'f1'HAKATHX

OJ? '1 HRhF

1'1TAKAS

75

then lead out those three copies, neither III composrtion nor III syllables, nor III words, nor In letters, nor In sense, nOL in arrangement, nay, even III the 'I'heravada tradition and the hke, and also in the test, was there the slightest variation,
the three copies simultaneoualy, In

bhikkhus.

The order uf bhikkhus

To ilus effect sind the Anczents

1

12 "Then having there (Ill Jambudipa) compiled an origmal work called the Niinodaya, he wrote the Atthasiihni, a commentary on the Dhammasangam. 13 The Wise then commenced to compile a

PanttaHhakatTzii, and the Thera Revata seeing It.
said in these words: 14 "The text alone (of the three Pitakas) has been preserved III this land The Atthakathas are not extant here; nor IS there the Theravada or any other version to be found. 15 & 16 The Sinhalese Atthakath:i. are genuine. They were composed in the Smhalese language by the profoundly wise Mahinda With due regard to the methods of exposition as taught by the Buddha, put up before the three councils, and rehearsed by Sal'lputta and others, and they are extant among the people of Simbala. 17 Bepamng thither and hstenmg to the same, translate (them) into the dialect of Magadha.
I

J1la1,iiLamsQ

,TUfDour

ed ), pp 25]·262

76

BUDDHIST

m::'TORICAL

'lRAUI'J'lONb

.

It will Le all act couducive to the welfare of the
w bole world .. 18 H,1VlDg been thus advised, tlns profoundly WIse person iejoicmg therein, departed from there and visited this island (of Lanka) in the reIgn of this king (:\fahanaulJ). 19 On reachmg the l\![abrwIhara, the most splendid of all viharas, he entered the ';\1abapadhana Hall and approached Samghapala hstened there to the Sinhalese At~bakdtba and the 'I'heravnda, all complete, and was conviuced : , Tlns conveys the true meaumg of the doctrines of the Lord of Dharnma.' :21 Having assembled the Order there, he petitioned r I wish to translate the Atthakathns ; give me access to nll your books.' For the pnrp03e of tearing hIS quahfications. The Order gave hun only two gatLas, slylllg r Hence prove thy quahfication; hanng satisfied ourselves on tlus point, we will then let thee have all OUl hooks.' ~3 From these (two gathJ.s) he, consulting 22 20 He

the three PItakas and the AHhllkathii. thereon
condensing them into an abndged a book called the Vl8llddhlmagga. form,

and

composed

24 Thereupon having assembled the Order who had acquired a thorough knowledge of the doctnnes of the Buddha, at the Be-tree, he commenced to read out (his composmon).

A'J'THAKATHI

OF THRRB

PIT,\KAb

...... II

25 The devatas III order to make the gift of Ins wisdom celebrated among men, rendered that book mvrsible He, too, recomposed It foi the third trrue 26 'When he was III the act of producmg Ins book for the thud tunc, for the purpose of expounding It, the devatas restored the other two copies a150, 27 The (assembled) blnkkhus then lead out the three hooks SImultaneously. Neither in sound, nor J11 srgrnflcance, nor rn arrange-

ment,
28 Day even III the theravada and III the text was there, III tho measure of verses, or 10 letters, the slightest variauon III those three verSlons. " When the three COPieS of the book had been prepared, 3 great sound was beard, untimely thunders clapped, and the gods shouted applause In the air. At that time many thousand blukkhus who had come together III the Muhavihara, saw that wonder, and bemg pleased and gladdened, they gave applause, and shouted agam and agam, saymg: 1. Most assuredly tins IS ~Ietteyyd Bodhl-f'atta." Then on heariug tills, lnng lVIahlina.ma, attended by a great royal paity, came out of the CIty and went to the Mabnvihara. Paying homage to the Order of blnkkhus, he mvited the venerable thera Buddhagho-a after showing due honour to lum. " Reverend 811', please take thy meal III my

78

BUDDHIST

HIbTORH' \L

rH.\lHTIONS

palace until the preaching of the finished. " He consented silently.

doctnnes

1'>

Then the Order 01 blnkkhus gave hun the books in which the text 01 the three Prtakas was recorded together w ith the books of the Sinhalese connnentai ies Then did the venerable Buddhaguo~a take all those books, and while dwelling In a mansion called the Padbanaghara on the southern snle ot the Mahavrhara, he translated all the Bmhalese commentaries, and rendered the oommentanes on the three Pitakas into the dialect of Magadha, WhICh 18 the baSIC language

In the Samanta-pasad~kii,
mentanos are spoken of are): llIalia-attha1.at1lii,

three kinds of coia·Wha.t are they? (The)

Ma1zii-pacGaI't-atthalwt11ii, and ]lalza-l,ulunqa-fl{t1zakailla. These three kinds
of commentancs constitute the SInhalese AttLakatha, The :;\hha-Attbakatha "as so called because havmg been made bv the thetas With Mnhakassapa at their head, and anthenncatcd in Fast Great CouUCII, It was brought over and translated into the Bmhalese language hy the great Mahmda. In tho Sinhalese language, It IS said, there was a raft (pacca In; hence sittrng there the Atthak-ithii, which was compiled, carne to be known as the great 'Haft' commentary pIa lz iipaccart). There was the Kurunrlavelu-vrhara (in Lanka); hence srttuig there the _Utlmkatba, WhICh was composed, came to be known as KUrUJ;l~l commentary.

A'l"l'BAI\:A'I'HA. OF '1 HIUm PI'fAKA S

79

Then the venerable Buddhaghosa after having translated the Sinhalese Kurunda-Atthakatha into the dialect of Magadha which IS the basic language, compiled a commentary on the VmayaPitaka, called the Samanta-piisiid",!ia As to this, It IS said : 29 "Skilled In the Vmaya, he, for the growth of the Susana, undertook the compilation of a commentary 011 the Vuiaya in the dialect of Magadba 30 And he completed all round lns work called the Samanta-pasad",kii, extendmg up to twenty-seven thousand syllables." Then In the Butta-Pitaka, after havmg translated the 8mhalese Maha-Atthalmtba, he compiled a commentary on the Digha-Nikaya, called the Sttmangalavilas111,L So also he compiled a commentary on the Majjlnma-Nikaya, called the Papancasudani Snmlarly he compiled a commentary on the Sumyuua-Nrknya, called the Sliratthappa1ciisznL Likewise, he compiled a commentary on the Anguttaia-Nikaya, called the

Manorat1zapfl1a1J.i.
As to this, It IS said 31 "SkIlled 111 the Buttanta, he for the growth of the Snscn«, undertook the compilation of the commentaries on the Suttanta. 32 And he completed, all round the commentanes on the four Nikayas, extending up to eighty thousand syllables.

H1

m;DLIUST

HISTORICAJ,

TR_\DITIO~E.

03

He also completed, all round a commenextending up to

tary on the Khuddaka-Nikaya, tlnrty-seven thousand syllables."

Thereafter in the Abhidhamma-Pitaka, be, 1fter hav mg translated the Sinhalese lIahaplcc3nAt~b3.katha into the dialect of jJagadha, wlnch IS the basic language, compiled a commentary on the
Dhamrnasangani, called the A.tthflsalini. So be compiled a commentary, called the Sammoharillodunl, on a book entitled the Vibhanga. As to this It has been Raid 3J
1"1

Skilled in the Abhidbamma,

be, for the

growth of the Siisana, undertook the compilation of the comurentaries on tbe Ablndhammn IJ) the dialect of 1Iagadha. 35 He completed all round (these commc e tari=s), called the A1t1zasiilml and the hke, extending up to thirty thousand syllables "
_.\.1)<1 in the dialect of ~Ia!2'adha, Ire rendered the .dttLakatbii. on the entire Theravada, adopted III forruer times by the adherent= ol the Thera vada, the Acarlyavihla. and the hke, WIth due regard to the method or the text. TIll" comprlation uf the Atthnk.rtha on the Pitnkas WJ.-5 an let (onducive to the ''i,.. Mare nf the inlul-u.mtof all countries. When the Atthakatha on the Pitakas wah completed, the great earth quaked m mao) Wa)8 The wnting of this Anhakatha on the Pitakas was completed III ODe year.

-\Tl'IHKU'F!a

OF THREE

PITAKAS

81

Then the venerable Bnddhagho'la, h ivmg finished bl'l task, wished to worslup the great Be-tree, and be, paying homage to the Order of bhikkhus and taking' thurr pe-mrs-non, returned to

Jambudlpa To this effect saul the Ancients

1

:

36 "Wben nine hundred and fifty-six years bad passed SIUCC the attaiument of tile Panrnbbana by the Sambuddha Mabauama, lord of meu, reigned 10 Lanka with tell kinds of piety. 37 As he was <1,:; profound 10 hIS eloquence as the Buddh i hunselt, throughout the world Ghosa bee uno renowned is the Buddha. HIj came to the i sl.uu] of Lauk.t, and proved liunself of its utmost benefit 38 The Order gave (hun) only two verses and the Sinh ile-,e commentary, and he, with the perrmssrou of the 01 Ll....·, compiled the V'lsurldhtI magga. 39 Then the OHler, being exceedingly pleased ana gladdened, shout,»l ,1g.l1Il .in.I ,lgalll, sayiug . Most a =sui cdly till" IS :\lcth',:J. (Bodlusatta);' 40 'rho OHler gLn e (lum) the books of the three Pitakas together With the commentary thereon H~ took lip Ins residence III the secluded Ganthakara (vihar,i). 41 The whole of the Sm h ilese At~hakatha did he then translate into the dialect of Magadha, which IS the root of all languages.
Lll I

I

For

'III'SEla

911.11, see lfaluiom,zulJ ('rurnour

e L), pp. 2S2-2~S.

U-lS44B

82

BUDDHIST HIS'IORICAL TRADITIO!iS

42 This proved an achievement of the utmost consequence to all languages spoken by the human race All the them'! and acanyas held this compilation III the same estimation as the text (of the canon). 43 Thereafter, his task having been finished, he returned to Jambudipa to worship the great Be-tree 44 ?\Iabanama, having enjoyed the great earth twenty-two years, and doing many mentonous deeds, departed accordingly. 4:5 And the thera, havmg compiled the Atthaklltha on the Pitakas and doing many g(.od to the world, hved Ius allotted span of life and was reborn In the Tusita heaven. 46 The elder blnkkhus, dwellers of Lanka, who bad their task done, and were free Irom the asa\'d.s, then lived then alloted span of 1tfe and all of them also entered into N rbbana " 47 'I'hus know mg that hfe IS transient and hard to win, be wise and exert yourself to at tam the everlastmg and immortal state Here ends the Chapter, called I The Account of the Translation of the Attbakatha of the Three Pitakas ' 1U the Saddhammasamgaha, compiled for the serene JOY and emouon of the pious.

CRAPTER VUI
THE ACCOUNT OF THE fIKl.S OF THE TH.B.EB

PI'fAKAS

Thereafter when SIX hundred and eighty-three years had passed smce the translation of the commentaries on the three PItakas. a great king named Parakkamabahu, following the hne of Mahasammata. was born III the Solar-race. After his father's death when he had defeated the hostile kings of three kingdoms, he was consecrated as a universal monarch of the whole of Lanka and he, as a paramount sovereign shining forth with LIB glory that spread throughout his country and elsewhere, reigned righteously in the great CIty of Pulatthi When he had found that the Sa.ana, divided into different sects, having been
decay ed after one thousand one hundred and

fifty-four years from the tune of the great king Yattaglimam-abhaya, the J( IIluputtas (lit. the SOll8 of good famihes) belongmg to the Siuana bad shared loss, he, WIth hIS heart moved With compassion, thought. "How shall I make the Siisana prosper?" After haVIng completely subdued many hundred WIcked bhikkhus, robed them in white garment, turned them out of the Order and purified the Siisana. Under the leaderShIP of thera Mahiikassapa King Parakkamsbchu

84

BUDDHIST

HISTORlCAL

THADITIONS

built ~reat viharas together with the cetiyas a; Jetavana, Pubbarama, Dakkhmarama, Uttararama, Veluvana, Kapilavatthu, Isipatana, Kusmararfima, and Lankatilaka. He also caused an Uposatba Hall to be erected, WhICh was a great mansion with eleven stones and one thousand. com partments, decorated with a, tower, and ncb 11l pamnngs and creeper-works. 'I'hen he built a great vihara named Jetavana, adorned with lOWS of Be-trees, stupas, cells, huts and halls, filled with fragrance of flowers of varIOUS kinds of best trees, frequented by birds, such as the koltzlas (cuckoos) and the rest aud provided them \\ ith tanks full of cool water and covered WIth padum«, uppaZa, and pU1J,(lan/.a varieties of lotus. venerable thera Mahakassupa, who was the senior of the Order of many thousaud blnkkhus, assembled the order of bhikkhus there Then the venerable thera Mabakassapa addressed the blnkkhus ., Friends, the whole of the Attbavauuana, compiled by the ancients for the pUlpOSC of explaimng tile Iudden meamng of the ~\.tthak,tthn. of the three PIt~lLml:l, does not se: ve the purpose of blnkkhus residing III different countries Some are written III many terse expressions accordmg to the grammar of the Smhalese language. some are written In the dialect of Magadha, wlnch is the baSIC language, but they have been confused and twisted by translation. We should, removing the drawback III the translation, compile a
']'110

TlKXS OF THREg

PITAKAS

85

complete and clear AtthavaJ;lnana." Thc bhikkhus replied "Reverend Sir, let. the thera get the king issue all order therefor " At that time the kiug with hIS followmg came out of the City and went to the Vlhara Paying homage to the Order of blnkkhus headed by the thera NIahakasRapa, he took his seat on one side. Then the thera said to Inrn : I, 0 great lung, should the compilauon of the Atthavannana of the Atthakath5.s of the Pitakas be thy duty" " It IS well, reverend sir, I will lend my baddy co-opeiation : let the Order of bhikkhus be confident." 'I'heiealter the king, paying h0103ge to the Order of blnkkhus, entered the City. Then the elder blnkkhus, having fimslied their meal, assembled III the mansion, built I)), king Parakkamabahu, and beginnmg with an Atthavannana of the Sumautaprisadika, an AtLhul\'ILha on the Vmaya-Pitaka, compiled. an Atthavanuana, called the Siiratt71adljJal11, III the dialect of Magadha which is the basic language. As to this has It been said 1 "For proficiency 111 the Vmaya and for the growth of the Sasana, they undertook the compilation of a Vannana of the AHhakatba on the Vinaya. 2 They completed all round a work called the Siiratthadipa11i, extending up to thirty thousand syllables. "

86

BrrDDHIST

HISTORICAL

TRADITIONS

Thereafter beginning with an Attbavannana of the Sumangahll,zliisi'!it an Atthakatha on the Dlgha Nlkaya III the Sutranta-Prtaka, they compiled an Atthavannana, called the first Siiratthammijllsii, In the dialect of Magadha, which IS the basic language. Srmharly, beginning with an Attha\8J;1.Q.ana of the Papancasudanl, an Atthakatba on tbe Majjlnma ~ikaya. they compiled an Atthavannana, called the second Siiratt1111maizjusii, in the dialect of ~faf{adha, which is the baSIC language, Likewise, begmnmg With an Atthavannana of the Saratthappakasmi, an At~hakatha. on the Samy uttaX lka) a, the) compiled an Attha, aI;iI;laDa called the thud sarfitthaman)uSii, 1D the dialect of Magadha, which is the baSIC language. So also, begmnmg WIth an AttbayanJ;lana of the Manorathaptiranl, an ~\.ttbakatba on the Ailguttara-~lkaya, they complied an Attbavannana, called the fourth Sarattha· 17lmi)llSii, in the dialect of Magadha, wlnch IS the baSIC language. As to this it IS said 3 "SkIlled III the Sutianta, they, for the growth of the Sasana, undertook the compilatton of a Vannana of the Atthak1tha on the Suttanta 4 They completed all round a work called the saratthamali]usQ, extending up to nmety-Iour thousand syllables." Thereafter beginmng WIth an Atthavannana of
the Attll.lc;almi, an Atthakatha on the Dbamma-

sangam

III

the Abhidhamma-Pitaka,

they compiled

TIKIS

OF THUEE

PITAKAS

87

an original '_fika and a sub- Tika. called the first ParamatthapakiiswI, 10 the dialect of Magadha, which is the basic language. Srrmlarly, beginning with an Atthavann:mii of the Sammoha-vmodunl," an AHhakatha on the book called Vibhanga, they compiled an original '_fika and a sub-Ttka, called the second Paramatthapakasin1., lD the dialect of Magadha, WhICh IS the basic language Likewise, begmnmg with an Attha vannana of the Paramatthadipani, an Atthakatha on the five books (of the Abhidhamma), they compiled an original 1'ikfi and a sub-1'ika called the thud Puramait1lapahasm'i, III the dialect of Magadha, which IS the baSIC language, To tlns effect said the AncIents 5 Skilled III the Ablndhammn, they, for the growth of the Sasana, undertook the cornpilation of a Vannana of the Atthakathii on the AbhIdhamma. 6 They completed an round the Pa1'amatthapakiisini extending up to twenty-seven thousand sy llables. " Thus being requested by king Parakkamabahu, the thera Mahnkassapa together With many thousand theras put forth their exertion and even as the rehearsal of the Dhamrna and the Vinayn, completed the AtthavanJ;lanii. of the Atthakathii. on the Pitakas. When the compilation of the Atthava~J;lana was completed, many wonders, including the earthquake and the hke, were manifested, and the gods shouted applause. ThIS comprlation of the
H

88

BUDDHIST

HISTOHINL

TR \.DITIONS

AtthavaI,lQ.ana of the Atthakatha
was completed
111

on the Pitakaa

one year.

To thie effect said the Anczents:
7 "One thousand five hundred and eighty. seven years after the attainment of the Panmbbana by the Sambuddha, Parakkamu became king 8 He, who was consecrated and fond of the lustre of the Sasana, suppressed hIS enermes by the power of hIS great merit. 9 For tlus purpose Parakkamababu, kine of Simhal a , made the Nikayas harmomous and the Sasana pure 10 & 1 L Bemg requested by king Parakkama balm who wished that the Susana might endure, the great them Kassapa, leader of the Older, exerted fur the Sasaua so that the Susana might prosper in the Island or 'I'ambapanni.' 12 The explanation of hidden meaning of the Atthakatha all the Prtakas does not serve altogether the purpose of blnkkhus everywhere.
13 Some are written
III

many

terse

t:'xpre~-

SLOn8 accoidmg to the Sinhalese graruniai which by rts nature is difficult to be understood. 14 Some, having made all attempt In the language of Magadha, have wntten sometlnng intermixed with translation. 15 Here, m many places IS found the worthlessness III composruon : tlnngs are not clearly descnbed and they are not intelhgible without difficulty 111 meanmg.

TIKaS

OF l'HRIHi;

PIfAKAS

89

1G From what IS thus Incomplete, how can the mhabitants of different countnes make out the meaning throughout 17 From this, leaving aside the translation and taking the substance througbout, I shall make a clear and full exposition," 18 & 19 The works called the Saratt1zadip ani, the Saratt1zalJ£all]ltsa, and the Paramatthappakasini, were expounded by the great tberas as VanQana of the three Pitakas and as explanation of their hidden meamngs. This act was conducive to the welfare of beings and of all languages. 20 The kmg of Lanka, named Parakkamabhuja, who was pIOUS and WIse, reigned III Lanka with ten kinds of piety. 21 He who was a believer 1I1 the Three Jewels, domg many mentorrous deeds, departed accordingly at the end of Ius hfe 22 When the theras, such as Kassapa and others, .had compiled the 'rika of the Puskas, they also lived then allotted span of hfe and departed according to their deeds 23 Thus knowing that hfe is transient and hard to win, be Wise and exert yourselves to attain the everlasting and Immortal state. Here ends the Chapter, called 'The Account of the 'fikas of the Three Prtakas ' in the Saddhammasamga1za, compiled for the serene joy and emotion of the pIOUS.

CHAPTER IX
THE A(,COUNT OF ALL THE BOOKS CO'1PILED BY THE THERAS

1 The text of the three Pitakas delivered by the Perfectly Enhghtened One, contains one thousand Due hundred and eighty-three cbapters g And according to the number of ayllables, the text of tbe three Pitakas contains two lac two nahuta five thousand seven hundred and flft\' syllables In number. 3 And according to letters, the text of the three Pitakas contains ninety-four lac and sixtyfour thousand letters. 4 The whole Attbakatha of the PI takas, which was expounded by Buddhaghosa, contams one thousand one hundred and sixty-three chapters. 5 And according to the number of syllables, the whole Attbakatha of the PI takas contains two lac nine nahuta five thousand seven hundred and fifty syllables. 6 And according to letters, the whole Attbakatha of the Puakas contains ninety-three lac and four thousand letters. 7 The 'riM of the three Pitakas, WhICh was expounded by the teachers of the 'rika, contams,

BOOKS COMPILED BY

THERAS

91

accordmg to the number of chapters, SIX hundred and thirty-two chapters. 8 And according to syllables, the Tikii. of the three Pitakas contams one hundred and fifty-eight thousand syllables 9 And according to letters, the 'l'ikii. of the three Pitakas contains fifty hundred and fifty-sIx thousand letters. 10 The grand work, known as the Visuddhimagga, was compiled by the thera Buddhaghosa as an explanation of the meaning of the Pijakas, 11 The Kankha-vitarani, an Atthakathii. on the Pati-mokkha, was also compiled by the wise thera Buddbaghosa. 12 The Khuddas~kkha, with thorough mastery, was compiled by the thera Dhammasin, who was morally strong, for the use of blnkkhus who were beginners. 13 The excellent work, compiled by the thera Buddhadatta, IS widely known as the A bh~dha1'lJ,1nlivatiira. 14 The PaJa1l1,atta-lJmwchaya was compiled by the thera Amruddha III the excellent CIty of KaiiClpura. 15 The Ablndharnrnattha-tlarngaha was compiled by a thera, named Anuruddha, for the purpose of explaining the Highest Truth. 1G The Sa ccasamkhepa , adorned with varied method, was compiled by a disciple of the thera Ananda as an exposition of subtle matters.

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