(9) See the account of Buddha’s preaching in chapter xviii.
(10) The sentiment of this clause is not easily caught.
(11) See E. M., p. 152:—“Buddha made a law forbidding the monks to commit suicide. He prohibited any one from discoursing on the miseries of life in such a manner as to cause desperation.” See also M. B., pp. 464, 465.
(12) Beal says:—“Evil desire; hatred; ignorance.”
(13) See chap. xx, note 10.
(14) The Anagamin belong to the third degree of Buddhistic saintship, the third class of Aryas, who are no more liable to be reborn as men, but are to be born once more as devas, when they will forthwith become Arhats, and attain to nirvana. E. H., pp. 8, 9.
(15) Our author expresses no opinion of his own on the act of this bhikshu. Must it not have been a good act, when it was attended, in the very act of performance, by such blessed consequences? But if Buddhism had not something better to show than what appears here, it would not attract the interest which it now does. The bhikshu was evidently rather out of his mind; and the verdict of a coroner’s inquest of this nineteenth century would have pronounced that he killed himself “in a fit of insanity.”
GAYA. SAKYAMUNI’S ATTAINING TO THE BUDDHASHIP; AND OTHER LEGENDS.
From this place, after travelling to the west for four yojanas, (the pilgrims) came to the city of Gaya;(1) but inside the city all was emptiness and desolation. Going on again to the south for twenty le, they arrived at the place where the Bodhisattva for six years practised with himself painful austerities. All around was forest.
Three le west from here they came to the place where, when Buddha had gone into the water to bathe, a deva bent down the branch of a tree, by means of which he succeeded in getting out of the pool.(2)
Two le north from this was the place where the Gramika girls presented to Buddha the rice-gruel made with milk;(3) and two le north from this (again) was the place where, seated on a rock under a great tree, and facing the east, he ate (the gruel). The tree and the rock are there at the present day. The rock may be six cubits in breadth and length, and rather more than two cubits in height. In Central India the cold and heat are so equally tempered that trees will live in it for several thousand and even for ten thousand years.
Half a yojana from this place to the north-east there was a cavern in the rocks, into which the Bodhisattva entered, and sat cross-legged with his face to the west. (As he did so), he said to himself, “If I am to attain to perfect wisdom (and become Buddha), let there be a supernatural attestation of it.” On the wall of the rock there appeared immediately the shadow of a Buddha, rather more than three feet in length, which is still bright at the present day.