The Fourth Discourse From Mahāvastu, Vol. III pp. 443-9.01

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9. King Bimbisāra goes to meet the Buddha

Then the Gracious One while walking on walking tour amongst the Magadhans with a great Community of Monks, with one thousand two hundred and fifty monks, entered the town of Rājagṛha of the Magadhans, and having reached there he lived in the Sapling garden wood on the edge of the mountain.

King Śreṇya Bimbisāra heard from his brāhmaṇa chaplain and the royal teacher: “The Gracious One, it seems, while walking on walking tour amongst the Magadhans with a great Community of Monks, with one thousand two hundred and fifty monks, has entered the town of Rājagṛha of the Magadhans, and having reached there he is living in the Sapling garden wood on the edge of the mountain.” After hearing (it) he addressed a certain King's Minister (saying):

“Good Minister, I am going out to meet the Gracious One, the Awakened One. Decorate Rājagṛha, and prepare magnificent vehicles for the brāhmaṇas and householders from Magadha, and the craftsmen, and guildsmen, they must go together with me to meet the Gracious One, the Awakened One.”

“Certainly, Great King”, said the King's Minister, and after agreeing with Śreṇya Bimbisāra, he quickly prepared the magnificent vehicles, and had this proclamation made in Rājagṛha at the cross-roads and entrances (to the town): “The Awakened One, the Gracious One has reached the Sapling garden wood on the mountain's edge and everyone must go together with King Śreṇya Bimbisāra to meet the Gracious One.”

[short passage omitted]

Then the King's Minister, after seeing that the people had assembled, the magnificent vehicles had been made ready, and approaching King Śreṇya Bimbisāra, said this to King Śreṇiya Bimbisāra: “The magnificent vehicles have been made ready, Great King, and a great body of people have assembled, now is the time, your Majesty, for whatever you are thinking.”

Then the King Śreṇya Bimbisāra, after mounting a magnificent vehicle, surrounded by twelve myriads of brāhmaṇas and householders from Magadha, with great Royal power and a great body of people who were calling and shouting, with the collective noise of drums great and small, and conches, went out from the town of Rājagṛha and to the Sapling garden wood on the edge of the mountain.

Then the King Śreṇya Bimbisāra, having gone as far as the ground for vehicles (would allow), and descending from the vehicle, approached the Gracious One by foot, and after worshipping the Gracious One's feet with his head, he sat down on one side.

Some (of the brāhmaṇas and householders), after polite and courteous talk with the Gracious One, and exchanging greetings, sat down on one side. Some, after announcing to the Gracious One their very own Mother's and Father's name and lineage, sat down on one side. Some, after raising their hands in respectful salutation to the Gracious One, sat down on one side. Some of the brāhmaṇas and householders from Magadha, while keeping silent, sat down on one side.

[passage omitted]

 

10. The Discourse on Arising and Ceasing

Then the Gracious One presented See BHSD, s.v. praṇāmayati for this meaning.02 this Dharma talk to the brāhmaṇas and householders from Magadha:

“Bodily form, brāhmaṇas and householders, arises and ceases, feeling arises and ceases, perception arises and ceases, (volitional) processes arise and cease, consciousness arises and ceases.

The Noble Disciple, brāhmaṇas and householders, contemplating ‘bodily form has the nature to arise and dissolve’, contemplates ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are impermanent’,

contemplating ‘bodily form is impermanent’, contemplating ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are impermanent’, contemplating ‘bodily form is suffering’ contemplating ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are suffering’, contemplates ‘bodily form is not-self’, he contemplates ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are not-self’,

contemplating ‘bodily form is not-self’, contemplating ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are not-self’, he knows ‘bodily form arises and dissolves’, knowing ‘bodily form arises and dissolves’ he knows ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness arise and dissolve’, knowing ‘bodily form is impermanent’ he knows, knowing [thus], he knows ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are impermanent’,

knowing [thus], he knows ‘bodily form is suffering’, knowing [thus], he knows ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are suffering’, knowing [thus], he knows ‘bodily form is not-self’,

knowing [thus], he knows ‘feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are not-self’, knowing (thus) he is not attached to anything in the world, being without attachment he personally is emancipated,

‘Destroyed is (re)birth,
accomplished is the spiritual life
done is what ought to be done
there is no more of this mundane state' - this he knows.

Then this occurred to those brāhmaṇas and householders:

“Since bodily form, it seems, is surely not-self, (since) feeling, perception, (volitional) processes, and consciousness are not-self, then who is the maker, or the one who makes, who is the animator, or the originator, or the one who puts (them) down, who takes up these processes or puts them down, for whom are these processes empty, not capable of being self, or having a self or with a capability of being self?

Then the Gracious One, knowing with his mind the reflection that had arisen in the minds of those brāhmaṇas and householders, addressed the monks (saying):

“The fool, monks, though he declares he has arrived at (the view of) not-self (thinks) his feelings, perceptions, (volitional) processes, or consciousness are ‘my self’; but again I do not say thus:

‘I am the maker here, or the one who makes, the animator, or the originator, or the one who puts (them) down, he who puts down these processes here and takes (them) up elsewhere.’

The processes arise and the processes cease, they arise with causes, and they cease with causes, with causes for the process of rebirth, [thus] monks, does the Realised One [explain] ‘self’ and ‘the one who takes up’. I declare there is a falling away and a rearising of beings.

I see, monks, with my divine eye which is purified and surpasses that of (normal) men beings falling away and rearising: beautiful and ugly, well born and low born, base and excellent, I know that beings are born according to their actions, but again I do not say thus:

‘I am the maker, or the one who makes, the animator, or the activator, This is additional to the formulas above.03 or the originator, or the one who puts (them) down, who puts down these processes here and takes (them) up elsewhere.’ The processes arise and the processes cease, they arise with causes and conditions, and they cease with causes and conditions.

There is the view about causes, and the view about continuity in existence, ‘with causes processes arise’, monks, seeing this with right wisdom as it really is there will be no existence-view or eternity-view; ‘with causes processes cease’, monks, seeing this with right wisdom as it really is there will be no extinction view, or annihilation view.

So not having approached either of these two extremes, monks, the Realised One teaches the Dhamma which is a middle practice (thus):

Because of ignorance there are (volitional) processes,
because of (volitional) processes: consciousness,
because of consciousness: mind and body,
because of mind and body: the six sense spheres,
because of the six sense spheres: contact,
because of contact: feeling,
because of feeling: craving,
because of craving: attachment,
because of attachment: continuation,
because of continuation: birth,
because of birth: old age, death, grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair.

And so there is an origination of this [whole] great mass of suffering.

From the cessation of ignorance, there is the cessation of (volitional) processes,
from the cessation of (volitional) processes, the cessation of consciousness,
from the cessation of consciousness, the cessation of mind and body,
from the cessation of mind and body, the cessation of the six sense spheres,
from the cessation of the six sense spheres, the cessation of contact,
from the cessation of contact, the cessation of feeling,
from the cessation of feeling, the cessation of craving,
from the cessation of craving, the cessation of attachment,
from the cessation of attachment, the cessation of continuation,
from the cessation of continuation, the cessation of birth,
from the cessation of birth, the cessation of old age and death,
from the cessation of old age and death, This differs from the standard formula, which reads: from the cessation of birth, old age and death, grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair (all) cease.04 grief, lamentation, pain, sorrow, and despair (all) cease,

and so there is a cessation of this whole great mass of suffering.

The Gracious One said this while living near Rājagṛha on the side of the mountain in the Sapling Garden, moreover, as this sermon was being given, as King Śreṇya Bimbisāra was sitting right there on the seat, the dust-free, stainless, Vision-of-the-Dhamma regarding (all) things arose.

Also to eleven thousand (of the brāhmaṇas and householders) the dust-free, stainless, Vision-of-the-Dhamma regarding (all) things arose. Also the twelve thousand coachman and drivers at the back went for refuge to the Buddha, went for refuge to the Dhamma, went for refuge to the Saṅgha, and those monks, King Śreṇya Bimbisāra, and the brāhmaṇas and householders from Magadha were uplifted and greatly rejoiced in what was said by the Gracious One.