[from V. The Third Recital]

[The Going-Forth of Mahinda and Saṅghamittā]
491-519 ≠ Mhv. 184-211

Tasmiṁ dine Mahārājā, sabbālaṅkārabhūsito,
On that day the Great King, decked out with all adornments,

sahorodho sahāmacco, baloghaparivārito, [491]
together with his harem and ministers, and surrounded by his army, I do not find the compound balogha in the dictionaries, it would literally mean a flood of strong men.02

agamāsi sakārāmaṁ, bhindanto viya mediniṁ,
went to his own monastery, I.e the Asokārāma.03 as though splitting the (whole) earth, The simile is not clear, maybe it is meant to indicate his power.04

Saṅghamajjhamhi aṭṭhāsi, vanditvā Saṅgham-uttamaṁ. [492]
and, after worshipping the supreme Community, stood in the midst of the Community.

Tasmiṁ samāgame āsuṁ asītibhikkhukoṭiyo,
In that assembly there were eight-hundred million monks,

ahesuṁ satasahassaṁ tesu khīṇāsavā yatī. ExtMhv: yati (singular), printer's error.05 [493]
and of them one hundred thousand were strivers who had destroyed the pollutants. I.e. were Arahants.06

Navuti bhikkhusahassāni ahū Mhv: satasahassāni āsuṁ.07 bhikkhuṇiyo tahiṁ,
There were (also) ninety thousand monastic This is a curious use of the word bhikkhu, which normally signifies a male monastic, perhaps Geiger's reading is to be preferred.08 nuns in that place,

khīṇāsavā bhikkhuṇiyo sahassaṁ ahu tā tadā. Mhv: āsu tāsu tu.09 [494]
and at that time one thousand nuns had destroyed the pollutants.

'Lokavivaraṇaṁ' nāma pāṭiheraṁ akaṁsu te
Khīṇāsavā pasādatthaṁ Dhammāsokassa Rājino. [495]

Those who had destroyed the pollutants performed the miracle called 'Opening the World' Described in the Buddhavaṁsa commentary as making all the beings in the universe visible to each other, from the highest heaven to the lowest hell.10 for the purpose of instilling confidence in King Dhammāsoka.

'Caṇḍāsoko' ti ñāyittha pubbe pāpena kammunā,
Previously, because of his wicked deeds, he was known as 'Violent Asoka'

'Dhammāsoko' ti ñāyittha pacchā puññena kammunā. [496]
and later because of his meritorious deeds he was known as 'Righteous Asoka'.

Samuddapariyantaṁ so Jambudīpaṁ samantato,
passi sabbavihāre ca nānāpūjāvibhūsite, [497]

He looked at the Rose-Apple Island, which is surrounded on all sides by the ocean, and all the monasteries decorated with many offerings,

atīva tuṭṭho te disvā, Saṅghaṁ pucchi, nisīdiya:
and having seen that he was very satisfied, and after sitting, he asked the Community:

“Kassa Bhante pariccāgo Mahāsugatasāsane?” [498]
“Was anyone, venerable Sirs, so generous in the Dispensation of the Greatly Fortunate One?”

Thero Moggaliputto so Rañño puṭṭho Mhv: pañhaṁ.11 viyākari:
The Elder Moggaliputta Ven. Moggaliputta was the Chief Elder in the Saṅgha at the time, and would soon head the Third Council.12 answered the King's question:

“Dharamāne pi Sugate natthi cāgī tayā samo!” [499]
“Even while the Fortunate One was living there has been no generosity like unto yours!” Interestingly, this places Asoka above Anāthapiṇḍika as the most generous supporter.13

Taṁ sutvā vacanaṁ, bhiyyo tuṭṭho Rājā apucchi taṁ:
Having heard that statement, the King was very satisfied and asked him:

“Buddhasāsanadāyādo hoti kho mādiso?” iti [500]
“Is there one who inherits the Awakened One's Dispensation who is like unto me?”

Thero tu Rājaputtassa Mahindassopanissayaṁ,
tatheva Rājadhītāya Saṅghamittāya pekkhiya, [501]

But the Elder saw the supporting conditions of the King's son Mahinda, and similarly of the King's daughter Saṅghamittā,

Sāsanassābhivuddhiñ-ca taṁ hetukam-apekkhiya, Mhv: hetukaṁ avekkhiya.14
and seeing the conditions for the growth of the Dispensation,

paccābhāsatha Rājānaṁ so Sāsanadhurandharo: [502]
the one responsible for the Dispensation answered the King:

“Tādiso pi mahācāgī na dāyādo ti Sāsane,
“Even such a one, who is greatly generous, is not known as an heir in the Dispensation,

yo hi koci, Mahārāja, āmisaṁ rāsikaṁ kare [503]
whoever, Great King, having amassed a heap of wealth

paṭhavītalato yāva Brahmalokā pi aggato
from the plains of the earth up to the tip of the Brahma worlds

dadeyya Bhikkhusaṅghassa mahādānaṁ asesato [504]
and would give it entirely as a great donation to the Community of monks

paccayadāyako tveva vuccate Manujādhipa,
is still only known as a supporter of (material) requisites, O Ruler of Men,

yo puttaṁ vā Mhv: Yo ca puttaṁ.15 dhītaraṁ vā pabbajjāpeti Sāsane
(but) he who lets his son or daughter go forth in the Dispensation

so Sāsanassa dāyādo hoti, no dāyako api. [505]
is a (true) supporter of the Dispensation, as well as our (material) supporter.

Atha Sāsanadāyādabhāvam-icchaṁ Mahīpati,
Then the Lord of the World, wishing to have the nature of a supporter of the Dispensation,

Mahindaṁ Saṅghamittañ-ca ṭhite tatra apucchatha: [506]
asked Mahinda and Saṅghamittā as they were standing there:

“Pabbajissatha no, Mhv: kiṁ.16 Tātā? Pabbajjā mahatī matā.”
“Will you go forth, Dears? Going-forth is known as a great thing.”

Pituno vacanaṁ sutvā, Pitaraṁ te abhāsisuṁ: [507]
Having heard their Father's statement, they said this to their Father:

“Ajjeva pabbajissāma sace tvaṁ Deva-m-icchasi,
“Today we will go forth if the God-King wishes,

amhañ-ca lābho tuyhañ-ca pabbajjāya bhavissati.” [508]
there will be gain for us and for you in our going-forth.”

Uparājassa pabbajitakālato ca pabhūti so Mhv: pabbajjākālato pabhutī hi so.17
Since the time of the Prince (Tissa's) going-forth

kumāro pakatiyā pi kāmo hoti pabbajituṁ; Irregular cadence, the same word occurs irregularly in other verses also. See below, passim.18
the young man (Mahinda) had naturally desired to go forth;

sā cāpi Aggibrahmassa pabbajjā katanicchayā. [509]
and (Saṅghamittā) had made a resolve at (her husband) Aggibrahmā's going-forth.

Uparajjaṁ Mahindassa dātukāmo pi Bhūpati,
Although the Lord of the Earth desired to give the vice-sovereignty to Mahinda,

tato pi adhikā sā ti pabbajjā yeva rocayi. [510]
even more that that he was pleased with his going-forth.

Piyaṁ puttaṁ Mahindañ-ca buddhirūpabaloditaṁ,
His dear son Mahinda, who was wise, handsome and very strong,

pabbajjāpesi samahaṁ, Saṅghamittañ-ca dhītaraṁ. [511]
he let go forth with festivities, and also his daughter Saṅghamittā.

Tadā vīsativasso so Mahindo Rājanandano,
Then Mahinda, the King's joy, was twenty years old,

Saṅghamittā Rājadhītā, aṭṭhārasasamā vayā. Mhv: tadā.19 [512]
and the King's daughter, Saṅghamittā, had reached eighteen. I do not know how we can reconclie this with her having had a son who had taken novice ordination two years earlier. If it were so it would mean that she gave birth to her son around age 11.20

Tadahe va ahū tassa pabbajjā upasampadā,
On the same day he had the going-forth and higher ordination,

pabbajjaṁ sikkhādānañ-ca tassā ca tadahū ahu. [513]
and on that very day she had the going-forth and the placing in training. This means she was given the further ordination as a sikkhamāna, which she must hold for two years, before acquiring her higher ordination as a bhikkhuṇī. 21

Upajjhāyo kumārassa ahu Moggali-avhayo,
The prince's preceptor was called Moggali, I.e. Moggaliputta Tissa.22

pabbājesi Mahādevatthero, Majjhantiko pana [514]
the Elder Mahādeva let him go forth, but Majjhantika These are two of the named missionaries in the later part of the text, who took the Dispensation to Mahisamaṇḍala and Kasmīra-Gandhāra respectively. They were sent on their missions by Mahinda's preceptor, Moggaliputtatissa. 23

kammavācaṁ akā, tasmiṁ sopasampadamaṇḍale,
made the formal announcement, and in the place of the higher ordination, It means right there in the sīma, or boundary-hall.24

Arahattaṁ Mahindo so Mhv: Mahāsatto.25 patto, sapaṭisambhidaṁ. [515]
Mahinda attained Worthiness, together with the analytic knowledges. They are four: analytic knowledge of meanings, conditions, language and of improvisation; atthapaṭisambhida, dhammapaṭisambhida, niruttipaṭisambhida, paṭibhānapaṭisambhida.26

Saṅghamittāyupajjhāyā Dhammapālā ti vissutā,
Saṅghamittā's preceptor Interesting that she is called upajjhāya here, as the normal word is pavattinī.27 was the well-known (nun) Dhammapālā,

ācariyā Āyupālā, kāle sā pi Mhv: sāsi.28 anāsavā. [516]
her teacher Āyupālā, and in time she also (became) pollutant-free.

Ubho Sāsanapajjotā Laṅkādīpopakārino,
They both were Lights of the Dispensation, and helpers of the Island of Laṅkā,

chaṭṭhe vasse pabbajiṁsu Dhammāsokassa Rājino. [517]
they went forth six years after King Dhammāsoka (came to the throne).

Mahāmahindo vassehi tīhi Dīpappasādako,
The Great Mahinda, who brought faith to the Island, in his third year

piṭakattayaṁ uggaṇhi upajjhāyassa santike. [518]
learned the three baskets The three baskets of the teaching: Discipline (Vinaya), Doctrine (Dhamma), and the Abstract Teaching (Abhidhamma).29 in the presence of his preceptor.

Sā bhikkhuṇī candalekhā, Mahindo bhikkhusūriyo,
The nun, a crescent moon, the monk Mahinda, the sun,

Buddhasāsanapajjotā dve kaniṭṭhā ca bhātaro. [519]
younger sister and brother, these two were Lights of the Awakened One's Dispensation.