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p. 344





On the thirty-two miraculous signs which appeared on the eve of the Birth of Bodhisattva.

Buddha addressed all the Bhikshus and said: Ten months having been fulfilled, Bodhisattva being on the point of birth, at this time there were manifested thirty-two miraculous signs. The first was this: (1) In the after-garden all the trees spontaneously bore fruit. (2) The solid earth produced blue lotus flowers as large as a chariot-wheel. (3) All the decayed trees of the earth produced flowers and leaves. (4) The heavenly spirits drawing the chariots adorned with curtains of seven gems, arrived at the spot. (5) In the middle of the earth (or, in the earth) 20,000 treasures of precious substances appeared of themselves. (6) On every side, far and near, was perceived the agreeable fragrance of celebrated perfumes (ming hiang ). (7) From the snowy mountains there came forth 500 white lions, and arranging themselves in front by the gates of the city, stood there without doing harm to any one. (8) Five hundred white elephants, arranging themselves in front of the palace, stood there. (9) The Devas caused a soft and perfumed rain to fall on every hand (the four quarters, i.e. through the world). (10) There appeared in the palace of the king spontaneously a water fountain possessed of the hundred qualities of taste, fit to satisfy the wants of all who were athirst. (11) The Nâga women appearing in the air with half their body visible, remained thus. (12) Ten thousand Devîs, holding in their hands

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peacock-feather fans, remained thus above the palace-walls. (13) All the Devîs, holding in their hands 10,000 golden pitchers full of sweet-dew (nectar), remained fixed in space. (14) Ten thousand Devîs, holding in their hands 10,000 vases full of scented water, proceeded and stopped in the air [ I suppose to be omitted]. (15) Ten thousand Devîs, holding in their hands standards and parasols, stood at attention. (16) All the Devîs arranging themselves in order stood still, whilst every kind of responsive music sounded spontaneously through space. (17) The four great river-drains (the four rivers flowing from the Anavatapta Lake?) remaining at rest, ceased to flow. (18) The sun and moon (the palaces of the sun and moon Devas) ceased to move. (19) The constellation Pushya descending, waited in the rear of all the other stars (or, star-concourse). (20) A net-like precious canopy entirely covered the palace of the king. (21) The divine pearl of the bright moon hanging over the palace hall, shed abroad a brilliant effulgence. (22) The lamps and fires of the palace were (by the superior light without) no longer visible. (23) Baskets and articles of dress appeared placed on their stands. (24) Articles of jewelry and treasures of every kind of precious stone appeared of themselves. (25) The five kinds of poisonous insects suddenly disappeared, whilst the fortunate bird (or bird of good omen) soaring aloft poured forth pleasant songs. (26) The pains inflicted in the different hells were allayed. (27) The earth through a great movement became perfectly level and smooth. (28) The four great highways and the narrower streets appeared perfectly smooth and ornamented with flowers. (29) All valleys and cavernous places were raised and became even. (30) The cruel designs of those who fished in the waters or hunted on the land gave way in a moment to a loving and merciful heart. (31) All the diseases to which children newly born, such as blindness, deafness, &c., are liable, were averted. (32) The tree-Devas, with half their bodies visible, appeared to all beholders, their heads reverently inclined. Such were the thirty-two miraculous signs which appeared on every side of the (palace) enclosures, sufficient to cause wonder and admiration (in

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those who beheld them), as indications of the approaching period. At this time the queen being about to give birth (to Bodhisattva), he, i.e. Bodhisattva, by exciting the thought in her mind by his own spiritual energy, caused her to arise at the first watch of the night, and having robed herself to go with her attendants to the place where the king was--(when she addressed him as follows):--'Listen to my words! for a long time have I thought of entering the garden for the purpose of religious meditation--supposing in every case, O Mahârâga! the idea is not displeasing or troublesome to you; in which case I would at once resort thither to reflect silently on the words of the sacred books.' The king thereupon answered, 'Willingly do I consent, saintly lady, that you should go forth to contemplate the flowers of the trees now in full bloom--for at this season, around the palace and its lovely dwellings, are countless kinds of trees, whose fruit and fragrant blossoms cannot but afford unmixed delight (to all beholders).' The queen, hearing these words, was filled with joy. Then the king commanded the precious chariot known as the 'cloud-mother' to be prepared and decorated; followed by a retinue of servants, and surrounded by attendant 1 women, thus the queen went forth to behold the trees in the Lumbinî 2 garden. The conductors of the inferior chariots were all similar in appearance and colour, distinguished for their splendour as they rode, dazzling the eyes of men. Two hundred white elephants followed and preceded the cortége, all decorated with gems and pearls. The elephants were furnished with six tusks. The king of the elephants, in the midst, was covered with a golden network, to which bells were attached that sounded melodiously 3 as the wind blew them one against the other; in other respects also they were fully caparisoned and armed. At this time there was concord and goodwill in the world, an absence of a contentious spirit. Thus surrounded, the queen wandered

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forth and reposed beneath the trees of the Lumbinî garden. Then Sakra-deva and Brahma-râga and the four heavenly kings descending (flying) from their respective abodes, and scattering flowers, hastily proceeded to the palace to ascertain the state of the case, and entering the different apartments, caused the servants and attendants to receive instructions (i.e. put the thought into their minds) to sweep and prepare the way for the approach of the king on the queen's departure. This being done and reported, the king was filled with joy, and entering the palace of the female attendants, he spoke thus: 'You who desire to give me satisfaction, and to impart joy, will do as I request; let there be no differences among you, but let each one be ready to sit quietly and reflect (on what I say). Decorate yourselves in your most dazzling attire; and anoint yourselves (or, your garments) with the choicest perfumes, pure and sweet; let your bodies be covered with countless ornaments and gems whose sound is delightful to the ear and joy-giving to the beholder, prepare for yourselves every kind of musical instrument, cymbals and pipes and lutes and drums, of every sort, which may accord in producing sweet music, so that the Devîs themselves hearing it may have joy. Thus provided, attend the queen as she mounts the lovely chariot; let male and female attendants alike, and the elephants composing the cortége, be decorated in one way, and let no ill sound or discordant note be heard to discompose the mind of the queen.' And now the elephants and horses and the military attendants of every kind, decorated as aforesaid, stood by the gate, and as the queen passed through on her departure there was heard the sound as it were of a great ocean, and the shouts of those who desired her ten thousand years, whilst the ornaments which decorated the chariot, as it moved along, gave forth propitious music. The lion throne, like that of the gods, was composed of (the wood of) the four precious (gem) trees, covered with (carved?) leaves and flowers of every possible description so as to perfect it. And now the ducks and geese and the peacocks raised their piteous notes in unison, whilst banners and flags decorated with the seven precious substances were placed as a canopy over the chariot.

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[paragraph continues] Then the Devas who dwell in space, surrounding the chariot as it advanced, likewise sang together in melodious strains. As soon as the queen sat down upon the lion throne the great universe (chiliocosm) was six times (or in six manners) shaken, and all the Devas scattered flowers (as they cried): 'The holy one to-day is about to be born even here beneath a tree of the Lumbinî (garden), it is he who is a god among gods.' The four heavenly kings conduct the chariot, the divine Sakra purifies and prepares the way, whilst Brahma Devarâga leads on before, attended by a hundred thousand Devas, who ever turn towards the chariot and adore (the queen) with heads inclined.

And now the king, the father, seeing all this, was filled with joy in his heart, and reflecting with himself he exclaimed: 'This (child) must be in truth the king of gods and men, whom all the Devas, the four heavenly kings, Sakra and Brahma, attending, agree to honour; he must indeed be one who shall attain to the condition of Buddha; for never yet in the three worlds has one received such adoration, whether Deva or Nâga or divine Sakra or Brahma, and yet escaped with life (unsplit head). Such a one then receiving these honours must of necessity in the end prove himself a holy person (divine).' Thus the queen (advanced), escorted by 84,000 chariots drawn by horses, the same number drawn by elephants, and by the same number of chariot drivers, fully adorned, and surrounded by soldiers, spearmen and halbard bearers of approved courage and strength on the right hand and on the left, and by others in front and rear, whilst before and behind was a surrounding concourse of 60,000 attendant women accompanied by 40,000 nobles all of the family of king Suddhodana, whilst others, the attendants of 64,000 kings, took part in the cortége that surrounded the mother of Bodhisattva. Moreover, there were 84,000 female attendants of the Devas, the Nâgas, the Gandharvas, the Kinnaras, Mahoragas, Asuras, all sumptuously decorated with jewels and ornaments, provided with drums and musical instruments, producing harmonious sounds although differing in character, whilst with their voices they sang of the perfections (virtues) of Bodhisattva's mother. Thus

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surrounded and attended they approach the Lumbinî grove, the road prepared carefully and the ground perfumed with scented water and covered with divine flowers, whilst the trees themselves budded forth and blossomed and the scented oil of choicest sandal-wood was produced on every side. This, indeed, was by the express interference of the gods. And now the queen having arrived, descended 1 from her precious chariot, and accompanied by Devas and Devîs she proceeded onwards through the garden, whilst the trees in honour of her presence shed abroad their brilliant hues and their fragrant scent. The queen now observed one tree of conspicuous beauty, made perfect by every kind of pearl and precious ornament. The stalks and twigs, the branches and leaves of this tree were all in truth full of fragrance, whilst its lovely verdure spread around on every side drooped to the ground, pliant and pure as silky grass. Like a vestment of some heavenly being it covered the earth--even as had been the case from old time with respect to the laws (relating to the birth) of all the Buddhas. And now all the Devas and men, at once, strike their drums, and from innumerable instruments the followers of the queen join in the strain, as she goes forward and arrives beneath the tree. By the influence of Bodhisattva the spirit inhabiting the tree bending down a branch of its own accord rendered assistance to the queen. All the Devas who inhabit space bending down their heads did obeisance, the sun and moon shed abroad a pure unsullied light, whilst the Devas and their female attendants, filled with admiration, gathered round to render meritorious service (to the queen as she stood) beneath the tree. Meantime the tree Deva was filled with joy in considering the reason of the presence of all this vast multitude, and reasoned thus: 'Now may we all well endure to bear these bodies of ours, whilst we employ them in rendering service and obedience, for from the lowest hell 2 to the highest heavens of the Trayastrimsas all sorrow must cease, all darkness disappear, whilst now the holy one is about to be

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born. So it is the trees are covered with flowers and foliage, whilst innumerable Devas gathered around do homage, and the great earth is shaken in six ways. The sun and moon shed abroad a pure and serene light, and music from innumerable instruments is heard around; yea, moreover, all impure desire is put away, and all the Devas are filled with joy; for to-day the holy one is to show his pity for all creatures, and therefore Brahma and Sakra and all the gods rejoice and worship; this is the honourable one among men, whose merits surpass the sun and moon. It is he, now dwelling in the womb, who shines forth like gold with a brightness eclipsing the light of heaven; all the Devas, Brahma, Sakra and the rest, and all the denizens of the countless worlds of space, putting away evil ways and thoughts, are now at peace, without remnant of sorrow or grief; and therefore the Devas, countless in number, offer the sacrifice of scattered flowers and music, and by their indomitable might cause the very ground to produce of itself flowers composed of the seven precious substances.' And now as Bodhisattva was born from the right side of his mother, suddenly there appeared a precious lotus flower on which he stood, and then taking seven steps he declared in words of the Fan language (or, with the voice of Brahma;--Brahmaghosha) the character of impermanency in accordance with his (subsequent) teaching (and added): 'I am now about to save and deliver all those in heaven and earth (above the heaven and below the heaven), as the lord of Devas and men to deliver (detach) them from the misery of (repeated) birth and death, as the highest in the universe (the three worlds) to cause all creatures to arrive at the condition of non-individuality (wu-wei) and thus obtain enduring rest.' Then Sakra-râga and Brahma caused every kind of scented water to descend suddenly for the purpose of washing (the person of) Bodhisattva, whilst the nine dragons who dwelt in space above, caused other scented streams to descend for the purification of the holy master. The washing being finished (he stood) perfectly pure in body and soul (heart), raised far above the position which for the present he occupied as wayfarer, born of a noble parentage, like a perfect and true gem

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uniting in itself every rare quality and excellency: about to turn the wheel of the law, or as a wheel king (Kakravartin) (if he continue in the world (the three worlds)) to bring all the quarters (the ten regions) under one over-shadowing government. And there arose in the heart of Suddhodana-râga a rapturous exultation. At this time there were born children of 5000 attendants (blue-clad), who were presented to the king to become his personal guards (lih-sse, the words used generally for vriggi); 800 young nurses also were delivered of sons; 100,000 elephants likewise produced their young; (as many) white mares produced their foals, their colour white as snow, their coats glossy and smooth; (as many) yellow sheep produced their lambs. At the same time there appeared two myriads of curtained precious chariots 1 for the holy one's use, (whilst those who brought them), bending their heads, desired to know whither he would go; and beyond all this the Devas caused innumerable apparitional forms to present themselves, to offer various services, and caused a glorious radiance to fill the place: 5000 Apsarases, their persons breathing fragrance, each holding . a jar of scented unguents, came to the place where stood the mother of Bodhisattva, 5000 others came to escort her to the city, having flowers and heavenly garments, whilst many youths and others came with jewels and ornaments for her person. Bodhisattva arriving at the condition 'free from fear' must complete the way of Buddha 2. Then Buddha addressed the Bhikshus: At the time of Bodhisattva's birth, his mother was perfectly at ease, no disagreeable malady or accompanying inconvenience disturbed her; but she was in the condition which most became her. At the same time, both in front and behind her, were 5000 female attendants providing divine incense and holding scented oil as an offering to the mother of Bodhisattva, whilst without intermission they paid her lowest reverence: there were, moreover, 5000 female attendants who offered her divine medicaments, 5000 others who presented her with

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jewels and necklets (or, precious necklaces), 5000 others who offered her divine robes for her person, 5000 others who offered her (or, attended her with) divine music, all these paid to her constant and reverent attention.'

And now it came to pass that there were five Rishis with supernatural powers passing over this country through the air who suddenly appeared in the presence of Suddhodanarâg1. Buddha, moreover, addressed the Bhikshus and said: 'At the time of Bodhisattva's birth, during seven days from morning till evening, there was continual music, whilst all the assembly offered a hundred different sorts of food beneath the Lumbinî tree, presenting to the mother of Bodhisattva the fruits of merit resulting from the exercise of the paramitâs of charity, morality, patience, and perseverance. At this time 32,000 Brahmakârins from day to day, without intermission, offered their gifts without stint, whatever (the mother of .Bodhisattva) desired; Sakra-deva and Brahma, assuming the appearance of young Brahmans (students), having taken conspicuous places amongst the assembled Brahmakârins, repeated these Gâthâs:

"Having put an end to all evil ways of birth (in himself)
He has now sent universal peace among men;
All creatures enjoying concord and rest
Are free from sorrow everywhere.
As the brightness of the sun scatters darkness.
So the glory of all the Devas withers,
His glorious merit scatters all their brightness,
And causes it to decay and disappear.
(We do) not (now) consider the time when he shall have exhausted karman (i.e. be born as a Buddha),
Nor shall we hear again of such a time,
For now the glory of Buddha has appeared,
And he has become the great saint of the world;
No more for him of labour or the ills of sense (dust),
His loving heart compassionates all living creatures,
And so innumerable Devas of the Brahma heaven (or, innumerable Brahma devas)
Have come to offer him boundless sacrifice.
And therefore also the trees covered with flowers
Rest in quiet upon the peaceful (or level) earth,
(In proof that) all the world will come to him for refuge (salvation),
And that all will fully rely on him.

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Just as in this lower world
The lotus springs from the midst of the mire,
Thus is Prabhâpâla 1 now born in the world,
About to nourish and govern all that lives.
For like as a pliant delicate robe
Is redolent with heavenly perfume,
So if there he a man diseased or sick
He will for his sake become 'the chief physician.'
And as by his presence he has caused an absence of all lustful desire,
And peace and goodwill dwell in the world of form,
(And as) with hands clasped (all these) render him worship,
He is surely worthy to be called the 'protector of all,'
And as the Devas, and their followers, All with compliant hearts
Mix freely with men in their common worship,
He will be in truth the 'great master of all.'
And as the pure unsullied water (rain)
Is universally diffused and causes luxuriant vegetation,
So by the right apprehension (samyakdrishti) of the truth of this one's doctrine,
There shall ever be both rest and quiet."'

Buddha, moreover, addressed the Bhikshus and said: 'Seven days after the birth of Bodhisattva his mother died.' On this the thought occurred to the Bhikshus, it must have been on account of some fault on the part of Bodhisattva that such an event occurred; on which Buddha resumed: Let not such a thought present itself; and why? Because her destiny was even so, that the birth of Bodhisattva should be the term of her life; and hence at her birth, when she came down for the purpose of bearing Bodhisattva in her womb, all the Devas attended her and provided her with heavenly clothing and food. And it has ever been thus. The mothers of all the Buddhas have always died seven days after their birth; and so because at the time of Bodhisattva's birth the bodily functions of his mother were all in perfect condition, she was born as the result of her previous merit in the Trâyastrimsas heaven. And before this, Bodhisattva not yet born, she had gone up thither, on which occasion all the Devas attending her offered her a palace to dwell in, and awaiting her in the great preaching hall they offered the queen 5000 pitchers containing the rarest scented waters; 5000 Apsarases presented her with thrones

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to sit on; 5000 others, holding caps of state in their hands, sprinkled before her on the ground perfumed water; 50,000 Brahma devas, holding golden pitchers, saluted her with expressions that she might live 10,000 years; 20,000 Nâgas with necklaced bodies, 20,000 white elephants with pearl-covered bodies, 20,000 chariots with flags and jewelled canopies surrounded-her, and behind these 40,600 armed attendants, heroes of marked courage, and Bodhisattva himself in the rear. Moreover, on this occasion there were countless thousand Devas, who caused to appear in space in a moment yellow golden parapets, along which they offered worship to the mother of Bodhisattva. On that night Bodhisattva was conceived in the womb, on which occasion 20,000 damsels attendants on Mâra, proceeding from the great and superbly-adorned palace of the Kâmaloka heavens, and holding in their hands precious silken tissues, came to the place to wait on the mother of Bodhisattva; and so likewise 20,000 men (male Devas?) with highly decorated bodies, to do honour to the occasion. On that night between every two attendant women was one Apsaras 1; the attendant women beholding the beauty of her face felt the risings of desire. And now by the power of the divine merit of Bodhisattva in the midst of this great city of Kapilavastu, 500 nobles, all of the Sâkya race, each laid the foundation of a palace for residence, 500 in all, so that when he entered the gates of the city, they addressed him as they paid him reverence and said, Oh, would that Sarvârthasiddha would condescend to enter this divine abode (place 2), this perfectly pure abode. Oh! thou whose eye beholds all things (samantakakshus), thou hast come down into this world (yeou = bhava), (condescend to enter) this great palace called "Hu-tsing-fa" (defend-pure-flower), a fitting residence for Bodhisattva.'

Then the great Brahmakârins and the principle princes of

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the Sâkya tribe addressing Suddhodana said, 'It would be perhaps convenient if the prince would condescend to agree to enter these abodes and remain in them (use them).' Bodhisattva therefore entered the 500 abodes. (Moreover they said, 'Who is there 1) of conspicuous merit, and of complacent disposition, who can protect and order (Bodhisattva) aright?' Then 500 Khandakas 2, each one said, 'We can nourish and cherish the prince.' But others replied, 'It is a difficult task to train aright and lead into obedience one possessed of such saintlike wisdom as the prince, especially such as are in the prime of their beauty and youth, for when he begins to grow up who then will be able to attend on him and direct him aright?' Then they all agreed that Mahâpragâpatî alone was able to nourish (the child), and with loving heart to protect him from the heats and damps of his abode, and to feed him with child's food (pap) by which he might grow to maturity. Mahâpragâpatî, the prince's maternal aunt, pure and faultless, she, they said, is the one to protect and cherish, and ever be near the person of the prince. Then Suddhodana-râga and the Sâkya princes, being all agreed on this point, went together to the abode of Mahâpragâpatî and expressed their wishes on the point: 'The prince's mother being dead, we beg you, his maternal aunt, to take charge of him and bring him up, that he may grow up (to manhood).' So Mahâpragâpatî undertook the office.

The king now called an assembly of the Sâkyas, wishing to find out, by enquiring of them, whether the prince was to be the lord of the kingdom, or if he was to become a recluse; desiring to solve this doubt (he called them together). Then the Sâkyas all replied and said, 'We have heard that in the snowy mountains there is a Rishi, a Brahmakârin, called Asita (A-i-to), of advanced age, and possessed of much wisdom, and thoroughly understanding all qualities and substances 3 (i.e. the nature of all things).'

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The king on hearing this was filled with joy, and caused a white elephant to be sumptuously equipped for the purpose of bringing to the place this learned man 1. Then all the Devas and Nâgas and spirits assembled in countless numbers and in various shapes accompanied the cortege as it left the city. Then Asita, seeing the transformed appearances of the Devas, knew that Suddhodana-râga had a holy son, whose spiritual (divine) glory outshone that of all the Devas and men, and so his heart was rejoiced, and he desired to go to behold him. On this the world-honoured one (i.e. Buddha) again, for the sake of the assembly, repeated these Gâthâs:

'The Brahman Rishi Asita
Beholding the Devas flying thro’ space,
Their forms beautiful and of golden colour,
Seeing them, was filled with joy.
Devas, Asuras, and Garudas (golden-wings)
Chanting 2 their praises in honour of Buddha,
Hearing these verses, how great his joy.
Then looking by his divine sight thro’ the world,
And considering the various examples of men of renown,
Whose excellences were as the mountain tops,
Or like the well-set and glossy flowers of the tree,
Wherever dwelt the lord of the three worlds,
There the wide-spreading earth would be level as the palm of the hand,
There would be heavenly and unmixed joy,
There would be abundance as the treasures of the sea king.
Regarding thus the declarations ("reason," or "way") of the law,
That one should come who would destroy evil and put an end to sorrow,
Whilst he saw the Devas flying thro’ space,
And listened to their melodious songs (sounds),
Regarding these fortunate and rare occurrences,
Asita looked through the world,
And narrowly scanning (the territory of) Kapila (and the family of) Suddhodana-râg3,
He saw that a child had there been born with fortunate signs.

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Seeing this, rejoicing he set out,
And (arriving) stood at the king's palace gate;
He beheld there an innumerable concourse of people,
When spying out a servant (grey-clothes), he asked and said:
"All hail! where dwells the king?
I desire to have an audience with the lord of the kingdom;"
The servant seeing the Rishi venerable for age,
With joy elated, entered the palace and delivered the message.
The king then ordered him to cause the Rishi to appear before him,
And spreading a seat he went forthwith to meet him.
Asita, hearing (the message), was glad at heart,
And filled with a yearning desire 1,
He asked where dwelt the lord, the holy one,
For he was failing now in years and had but few to live.
The king, commanding him to be seated,
Asked him wherefore he had come 2?
Because (he said) of the many signs he had seen, he had come,
Hearing of the excellency (superiority) of the son he had,
The thirty-two signs on his body,
He wished to behold him and inspect the fortunate indications,
Therefore (he said again) have I come.
"Welcome! (said the king) I rejoice (to see you) [or, I rejoice (to hear it)].
Now for a moment the child sleeps in peaceful rest,
But wait for a little while until he wakes,
And you shall see him beautiful as the moon at full."'

On this the mind of Asita being much perplexed, he replied to the king in the following Gâthâs and said:

'From endless Kalpas
With perseverance 3 accumulating meritorious conduct,
From time long past inspired with wisdom,
How is it possible that such a one can again take his rest in sleep?
Thro’ ages past exercising the virtue of charity,
Feeling deep compassion for the poor,
Grudging nothing which he possessed,
How can such a one again seek rest in sleep?
Reverencing the rules of pure conduct (sîla),
Observing the moral law without transgression,
Desiring to relieve and save all that lives,
How can such a one still find rest in sleep?
Always practising patience and equanimity,
His mind harbouring no resentment,
Controlling his heart (firm) like the solid earth,
How can such a one still repose in sleep?
Persevering steadily, as the moon from its first appearance,

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His eye ever looking onward without a moment's hesitation,
Regarding the example of the Buddhas of the ten regions (the universe),
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
With equal mind 1 ever lost in contemplation (dhyâna),
Without at any time disturbance or confusion,
The mind fixed as a great mountain,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Possessed of wisdom (prâgñâ) without limit,
With divine penetration like the sun's brightness,
Able to open out and explain every subject of enquiry,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Always cherishing the fourfold qualities 2,
Practising love and pity, joy and equanimity
Ceaselessly and without neglect as Brahma 3 himself,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Reverently practising the four gracious acts 4--
Benevolence, charity, humanity, and love--
Doing all for the good of men and that they again may profit others,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Reverently performing the thirty-seven divisions 5,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Always exercising the cross-method of indirect means (upâya),
Taking advantage of the occasion to open out and convert (explain and so convert),
Aiming in every turn to save the whole creation,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
His heart always at perfect rest,
His mind fixed with no approach to indifference,
Entering thus on the deep and impenetrable samâdhi,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Seeing clearly the beginning and ending (of the history) of that and this (i.e. of all),
Beholding as though present all the Buddhas,
Explaining that they (i.e. the Buddhas) are essentially without beginning,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Ever practising (or using) the three gates of salvation,
(Viz.) (the gate of) perfect void, without qualities, incessant effort (prayer or vow),
(Teaching) that the ideas of real existence (bhava),
And the absence of such existence, are without solid foundation,
How can such a one again repose in sleep? Great in love, of unfailing compassion,

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As a boat of the law (vessel of religion) passing through the three worlds,
To save and deliver the living and the dead,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
His religious merit (virtue) vast as space,
Himself born in this lower world for the sake of all creatures,
Under a vow to deliver these by means of the three vehicles 1,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Able to pass thro’ the vastness of space,
Knowing the hidden depths of the wide sea,
Able to count the number of every tree and shrub,
How can such 'a one again repose in sleep?
Let the king hear my words,
The virtues (excellences) of his son are without compare,
His wisdom infinite (beyond the number of the dust),
How can such a one again repose in sleep?
Descending as a god into his mother's womb,
So as to save countless beings,
Not omitting even the least in his intention,
How can such a one again repose in sleep?'

And now Bodhisattva having awoke from his sleep and arisen, Mahâpragâpati, enfolding him in a white and silk-like robe, came with him to the place where the king was. The king then offered to the Rishi (man of reason) a purse of gold and one of silver (yellow gold, white silver), which he declined to receive. Then unfolding the robe in which he was wrapped, (Asita) proceeded to observe the distinctive marks on the person of the prince. Of these he perceived thirty-two, viz. his entire body of a golden colour, on the summit of his head a fleshy excrescence, his hair of a purplish dark colour 2; between the eyebrows a white soft hairy circle, from the top of his head a bright light like that of the sun, the iris of the eye of a deep blue, moving the eyes up and down with ease, forty teeth in the mouth, the teeth white and even and square, the jaw-bones wide and long, the tongue long and full, his breast and shoulder broad and square like a lion's, his fingers long, his heels full and round, the fingers and toes connected by a thin filament, the wheel with a thousand spokes under the feet, that which ought to be hidden 3 concealed,

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his leg (calf of leg) like the stag's 1, the hair of the head curling to the right, every hair with a distinct opening, the hair or the skin soft and pliant, free from perspiration 2, on his breast the figure . Asita beholding these signs was overcome with emotion, the tears fell from his eyes, and he was unable to speak. On this, the king and Mahâpragâpatî were moved at heart, and with reverence (closed hands) addressed him thus: 'Is there then something unlucky? oh! tell us then its purport.' With closed hands, and raised in reverence, he replied: 'Fortunate and without the least ill omen. Let me venture to felicitate the king on the birth of this divine being (spiritual man). Undoubtedly it was on this account that the heavens and earth were greatly shaken on the evening of yesterday; and now as I understand the meaning of these signs, I will tell the king. The child possesses the thirty-two marks of a great man; if he remains in the world (i.e. a secular man) he will be a holy wheel-king (kakravartin) to whom the seven precious things will of themselves arrive, and his thousand sons will rule the world in righteousness but if he leaves the world (i.e. becomes a recluse) he will of himself become a Buddha (perfectly enlightened), and be the saviour of all living things. And now because I am old, I shall assuredly not in after days behold the Buddha, nor hear his sacred instructions (sûtras), and therefore I give way to grief.' Then the king, perfectly understanding his ability in interpreting signs, caused a palace to be erected with three halls fit for the three seasons--each in a different place--one for the cool season, and this he called the Autumn Hall; one for the warm season, and this was the Cool Hall; one for the winter season, and this was the Warm Hall: and then he selected 500 dancing women of rare beauty, neither too stout nor too thin, neither too tall nor too short, neither too fair nor too dark, skilful in all feminine arts and blandishments, all of them provided with pearl and other famous

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jewelled necklaces for their persons. A hundred men, each in turn, guarded the place by night. Before the several palaces were every kind of sweet fruit trees, and between the trees tanks of water, in which were every kind of aquatic flower, whilst an innumerable number (or a large number) 1 of birds with shining plumage and of different species (sounded their joyful notes on every side). The king hoped thus to amuse and please the prince, so as to prevent the rising of any desire to awaken reason (to become Buddha). The palace windows were all well secured, and the gates on opening and shutting could be heard at a distance of forty lis.

And now Buddha addressed the Bhikshus: 'When Bodhisattva was born, the great-spirit illustrious Deva (i.e. Mahesvara) addressed all the pure-abode (Devas) [i.e. the Suddhâvâsakâyikas] (and said), "Bodhisattva Mahâsattva (ta-sse) through countless ages having heaped up merit and acquired (tied as in a string) virtuous conduct, by his purity which has been to him a sacred enclosure 2, by his charity which has been everywhere celebrated, by his moral conduct (sîla) purifying himself throughout, diligently practising right conduct, his great love and pity leading him willingly to undertake the protection of all creatures and to lay a foundation of great rest (peace) in the world, Bodhisattva thus persevering with unflagging determination to fulfil the great vow he made in ages gone by before the Buddha then living (i.e. Dîpaṅkara) to plant the root of all virtues in himself, to be distinguished by possessing the glorious and holy substance of a hundred (sources) of merit, by which to cause peace and agreement amongst all creatures, and to cause them to rise above perverse thoughts (disagreements), and by. perfect purity and rejection of all that is vile, in this way to lay the foundation

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in himself for arriving at perfect wisdom, and (unfurl) the infinitely high standard of religion for the rescue of those who profess only natural powers (for their salvation), of himself to subdue (the evil powers that govern) the great universe, to become the leader and guide of gods and men, to perform fully that great sacrifice which directs men in the way from ignorance, and leads them to accumulate the excellent qualities of wisdom, to cut off the very source of repeated birth and death, to put in motion and make manifest the great vehicle--this one has just been born on the lower earth, and dwells in the king's palace--; oh then! let all living things--putting aside all private feelings or intentions), those who have arrived at wisdom and those not yet arrived--go straightway and adore with bowed heads, let them admire his merit and virtue, let them offer their sacrifice and bestow their gifts; and as for the rest, those Devas who are not subject to religion, but are puffed up in their own estimation, not knowing that the chief true one is manifested to point out the great way, whose destiny is of infinite worth, surpassing that of Bodhisattvas unknown in number, let all these too come and adore, let them behold this land of the king of the country of Srâvastî 1, let 2 them acquire merit by declaring the wisdom and majesty of Sarvârthasiddha, who has been born there, let them examine his true wisdom, and thus attain to the highest method of salvation;" and then they chanted thus:

"The merits (virtues) of Siddhartha 3 are as the sea (for extent),
And so declares Mahesvara with propriety,
Through ages too numerous to mention,
Preparing to be accepted as the honourable among men.
And now the countless host of the Devas of the pure abodes,
With glorious bodies resplendent as gems,
Are come with dignity and decorum in a body,

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To offer to the most honourable one, in person, their respectful worship.
These Devas, secure from the sufferings of the long night 1,
Fixed (or safe) in the pure gate 2 of all virtue,
Glorious with (or like) precious jewels,
Beautiful in appearance as the full moon,
Shining with radiance, but not equal to the holy one,
In reputation not to be compared with him,
They dare not pass over the royal precinct,
(Denizens of) the three worlds are unable to take so great responsibility,
Though from their persons issued such pure effulgence,
Though their words were harmonious (sweet) beyond rivalry,
Though richly (deeply) endowed with moray excellence
Beyond all other Devas,
Yet they could but offer to him their incomparable perfumes,
(They could but) reverence and adore
The Prince, unequalled for dignity,
And sacrifice to him as a god among gods.
Asita now informed (sent to) Suddhodana
(This message), 'The sign-interpreter desires to be admitted to see
The incomparably-beautiful divine holy one.'
The king, hearing the message, rejoiced exceedingly;
The gate-keeper respectfully announces, 'the king (desires you) to enter.'
The (sage), honoured by men, hearing this,
His hand holding a flower, was glad,
And like a divine person entered the holy abode.
And now the king beholding him enter,
Immediately rose with hands clasped together,
And arranged for him a gilded jewelled couch,
With the request that his excellency would sit on this (prepared) couch;
Immediately sitting, he examined carefully the four (quarters).
The king then desired to know wherefore he had come.
The child just born, his body replete with excellent tokens,
His conduct true, this one I am come to see;
Provided with marks and signs (indicating) his holy intelligence,
Not knowing any cause to return quickly,
Therefore do I wait here on the chair,
Expecting to be permitted to behold the glorious marks and signs.
And 3 now this attendant company (of Devas) arriving,
Quietly and joyfully they took their places above the Royal Prince,
And with reverence they behold him;
Lost in wonder, they reported to those without his unequalled (beauty)
And now, at length, (when) the exceedingly excellent lord and master,
Resplendent as gold, awaking, holy and graceful,
Raised himself, and showed his countenance,

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They bowed their heads to hide their eclipsed glory.
The old man (Asita), beholding him, rejoiced,
His incalculable (top unseen) excellences and endowments,
The white hair, unknown 1 among the Devas,
(A sign) that he would reach the condition of a Buddha and conquer all the hosts of Mâra,
(Seeing these) he sighed in astonishment at the very perfect (true) excellences (virtues, adornments),
Which were a sign that he would bring down and destroy the enticements of the senses,
And that the renowned (precious) Lion had come into the world,
Who would destroy (curse) the pollutions of birth and death.
Throughout the three worlds the fire of the three impurities (rages),
From the act of thought springs up the pollution of the poisons,
The rain of the law falling on the chiliocosm,
As the water of life (amrita), destroys the fire of the senses;
Armed with the cuirass of love, beholding
(These sorrows) the workings (aroma) of pity (arises),
And with his pliant, sweet voice of Brahma,
He instructs fully the three thousand worlds;
His mouth resounds the news of the great law as a drum;
It is he who is able to destroy the teaching (sûtras) of the heretical schools,
And the complications,(bands) of all evil practices,
His teaching, not being heard without avail,
Shall mightily prevail for the reformation of the age,
Like the shadow of a mighty tree,
His powerful teaching shall overshadow the world;
His wisdom able to survey the condition of all men,
His knowledge by its brightness able to scatter all darkness,
The only illustrious benefactor of Devas,
The only source of purity and truth,
Able to empty (the way of) wickedness and profit the way of heaven,
The faultless treasure found amongst men.
Then the assembled Devas, showering down flowers,
Worshipped and turned round him to the right,
After which, felicitating Buddha and the land of his birth,
Ascending into the air, they returned to heaven."'





346:1 The expression is 'tsae' .

346:2 The Chinese is 'Lin-ping' for 'Lumbinî;' in the glossary the sound 'ping' is given as equal to p(ing)-(m)i, i.e. 'pi.'

346:3 The sounds produced by gems striking one another. See glossary.

349:1 I have substituted for in the text.

349:2 I have been obliged here to substitute for .

351:1 Before the word for 'precious,' the text has an expression kiau-lu, which is said to mean curtain.

351:2 This clause comes in without any apparent connection with the context.

352:1 These parenthetical clauses appear to have crept into the text, and remained there without any immediate connection.

353:1 In Chinese 'hu-ming:' this was the name of Bodhisattva whilst resident in the Tusita heaven.

354:1 I take this from the French translation of the Lalita Vistara; the Chinese expression is .

354:2 Ku-ti en-kü; the French translation from the Tibetan renders this 'God above gods,' and so in the next phrase, tsing-tsing-kü, 'perfectly pure abode or place,' the Tibetan refers this also to Bodhisattva, and translates it, 'Oh! thou pure being.' I do not see how to bring the Chinese text into harmony with the Tibetan in this passage.

355:1 I have been obliged to supply this, the text being evidently corrupt.

355:2 Ku-nih. This is the transcription for Khandaka, the coachman of Bodhisattva. It is possible it may here represent' a personal attendant_' only, whether male or female. In the Lalita Vistara we read Sâkyabadhû, the wives of the Sâkyas.

355:3 I take siang here in its usual (Buddhist) sense as equal to 'lakshana' and fă as equal to 'dharma' in the sense of 'substance.'

356:1 Taou gin, this is another instance of the use of this expression not for a Buddhist, but for a religious man generally.

356:2 Kun-to, which I can only restore to Khandas; in the sense of a verse or singing a verse.

356:3 The sentence is elliptical and difficult; literally rendered it would be 'scanning Ka-i-pih-wang,' where I take Ka-i to be a form for Kapi(la) (just as the expression Kiu-i, so commonly met with as the name of Bodhisattva's wife, may be restored to Gopî) and pih-wang (the white king) to be a contracted form of Suddh(odana)-râga.

357:1 Literally, 'in his heart harbouring-hungry-void.'

357:2 Why himself invited, or condescended to come.

357:3 Vîrya.

358:1 Yih-sin generally corresponds to the Sanskrit samyak; it denotes the condition enjoyed during samâdhi.

358:2 Viz. the four qualities of heart named in the next line.

358:3 Fan.

358:4 Yan-hing, these four are named in the line following.

358:5 The thirty-seven perfections necessary to the attainment of Bodhi. I have of thought it necessary to name these in the text.

359:1 That is, the three degrees of Srâvaka, Pratyeka Buddha, and Bodhisattva.

359:2 This colour seems to correspond with the Greek κύανος compare κυανο-χαίτης as applied to Poseidon.

359:3 Concealed, as in the horse; but the whole of this part of the text is involved. This refers to the thirteenth lakshana, Koshopagatavastiguhvatâ.

360:1 There is a phrase here used hook-lock, which may possibly refer to the hooked form of the leg of the stag, though this would hardly be a sign of beauty in a human being. [It is explained in the glossary as denoting the bones well knit together.]

360:2 Dust-water.

361:1 which is a phrase often used for 'a great number;' see Notices on Chinese Grammar [part i, by Philo-Sinensis, Batavia. 1842], p. 70; and compare Fă-hien, p. 161 (English edition), where M. Stanislas Julien has suggested another reading.

361:2 Taou-kang, reason enclosure; this is the usual phrase for the Bodhi mandala, or enclosure round the Bodhi tree; it is difficult to translate in the text.

362:1 Tsang-yeh, increase and augment. Used for Srâvastî. Perhaps it should be Kapilavastu.

362:2 In the original it is 'let them &c. of born-time.' I take born-time to be a form of Bodhisattva's name, 'Sarvârthasiddha,' because when this name was given him, the king said, 'At the time of his birth all was prosperous.' But it is obscure.

362:3 Sing-shi.

363:1 Kang-ye, viz. the long night of pain.

363:2 The expression 'gate,' eg.' gate of the law,' means generally a 'mode' or 'method' (of salvation); hence the Devas are here said to be safe in the 'pure mode' or 'method,' i.e. to be Suddhâvâsikas.

363:3 Here the arrival of the Devas is again referred to.

364:1 character of uncertain signification.

Next: Note III. The Same Title Given to Different Works