Ja 181 The Story about (Prince) Asadisa

In the present the Buddha talks about how he gave up his kingdom for the spiritual life, and then tells a story of how he renounced a throne in the past, and the great deeds he did as a master archer called Asadisa, including saving his former kingdom with just one shot of an arrow.

1. Dhanuggaho Asadiso rājaputto mahabbalo,
Dūrepātī akkhaṇavedhī, mahākāyappadālano.

The archer Asadisa was a prince and he was very strong, one who could shoot far, who was a sharp shooter, breaking great bodies.

2. Sabbāmitte raṇaṁ katvā, na ca kañci viheṭhayi,
Bhātaraṁ sotthiṁ katvāna, saṁyamaṁ ajjhupāgamī ti.

Troubling all his enemies, without harassing anyone else, securing the safety of his brothers, he agreed to restraint.

In this connection, Asadisa, not only by his name, also through having strong effort and wisdom, he was Asadisa, Matchless.

Very strong, very strong with bodily strength, and also the strength of wisdom.

One who could shoot far, as far as the dwelling of the four great kings, as far as the dwelling of Tāvatiṁsa, he had the capability to send an arrow, therefore he is one who could shoot far.

A sharp shooter means shooting without missing. Or else sharp is said for lightning, during the lightning strike, as far as the light shines, having taken hold of the arrows seven or eight times, he penetrates, so he was a sharp shooter.

Breaking great bodies means he breaks great bodies. Hide body, wooden body, metal body, iron body, sand body, water body, plank body, these are the seven great bodies. In this connection, breaking another’s leather body means piercing buffalo hide, he pierces through one hundred buffalo hides. Another’s eight-finger thick board made from fig tree wood, or four-finger thick board made from Indian laurel tree wood, he pierces through these, he pierces one hundred planks bound together, then two-finger thick copper metal plate, or one finger thick iron plate. Carts with sand, carts with jujube, or carts with straw, having supplied an arrow in the hindpart, shooting in the forepart, naturally sending an arrow over the water for the length of four usabha, DPD: usabha 3. nt. measure of length; 140 cubits; approx 640 metres. over the ground for eight usabha. So from breaking these seven great bodies it is breaking great bodies.

Troubling means battling and putting to flight, this is the meaning.

Without harassing anyone else, without harassing even one. Without harassing anyone, but troubling his enemies by sending an arrow.

He agreed to restraint means restrained by virtue he undertook the going forth.