Ja 144 The Story about the Ox Tail

In the present the heretics practice all sorts of austerities in hope of sanctity, but the Buddha says it is all to no effect, and tells a story of how once he had been a fire-worshipper till one day the fire god proved unable to protect his sacrifice, at which point he abandoned his old practices and took to the Himālayas (full story).

1. Bahum-petaṁ asabbhi Jātaveda,
Yaṁ taṁ vāladhinābhipūjayāma,
Maṁsārahassa natthajja maṁsaṁ,
Naṅguṭṭham-pi bhavaṁ paṭiggahātū! ti

Wicked Jātaveda, this is a lot of tail that we greatly worship you with, for the one deserving meat there’s no meat today, accept, venerable, this tail!

In this connection, this is a lot means such a lot.

Wicked means a bad person, unvirtuous by birth.

Jātaveda, he calls on Fire. Even a new born knows fire, experiences it, it is clearly seen, therefore Jātaveda is said. (Repeating the note from Ja 35): This is what SED says: jātavedas, jāta-vedas (-ta-) mfn. (fr. vid cl. 6) “having whatever is born or created as his property”, “all-possessor” (or fr. vid cl.2. “knowing [or known by] all created beings”; cf. Nir. vii, 19 ŚBr. ix, 5, 1, 68 MBh. ii, 1146 &c.; N. of Agni) RV. AV. VS. &c.; m. fire...

Of tail that we greatly worship you with, today we, being unable to protect our possessions, greatly worship you, venerable, with this tail, this is a lot for you, this is the explanation.

For the one deserving meat means for you who are worthy of meat today there is no meat.

Accept, venerable, this tail, being unable to protect our possessions, venerable, please accept this tail having skin and bone.