1. Now when the Blessed One had stayed at Âpana as long as he thought fit, he went on, on his pilgrimage, to Kusinârâ, with a great company
of Bhikkhus, with two hundred and fifty Bhikkhus. And the Mallas of Kusinârâ heard, saying, 'The Blessed One, they say, is coming to Kusinârâ with a great company of Bhikkhus, with two hundred and fifty Bhikkhus.' And they established a compact to the effect that whosoever went not forth to welcome the Blessed One, should pay a fine of five hundred (pieces 1).
Now at that time there was a certain Malla, by name Roga, who was a friend of the venerable Ânanda's. And the Blessed One, continuing in due course his pilgrimage, arrived at Kusinârâ.
2. Then the Mallas of Kusinârâ went forth to welcome the Blessed One. And Roga the Malla, having gone forth to welcome the Blessed One, went on to the place where the venerable Ânanda was: and when he had come there, he saluted the venerable Ânanda, and stood by on one side. And to him, so standing, the venerable Ânanda spake thus:
'This is most excellent of thee, friend Roga, that thou hast come forth to welcome the Blessed One!'
'It is not I, O Ânanda, who am much moved 2 by the Buddha, or the Dhamma, or the Samgha. But by the clansmen a compact was made to the effect that whosoever went not forth to welcome the Blessed One should pay a fine of five hundred (pieces). So that it was through fear of being fined
by my clansmen that even I went forth to welcome the Blessed One.'
Then the venerable Ânanda was filled with sorrow, thinking, 'How can Roga the Malla speak thus?'
3. And the venerable Ânanda went up to the place where the Blessed One was: and when he had come there, he saluted the Blessed One, and took his seat on one side, and so sitting the venerable Ânanda spake to the Blessed One thus:
'This Roga the Malla, Lord, is a very distinguished and well-known person. Great would be the efficacy 1 of the adherence given by well-known persons like him to this doctrine and discipline. May the Blessed One be pleased so to act, that Roga the Malla shall become devoted to this doctrine and discipline.'
'Now that, Ânanda, is not a hard thing for the Tathâgata--so to act that Roga the Malla should become devoted to this doctrine and discipline.'
4. Then the Blessed One suffused Roga the Malla with the feeling of his love 2, and rising from his seat he entered into his dwelling-place. And Roga the Malla, overcome by the Blessed One by the sense of his love, just as a young calf follows the kine, so did he go on from dwelling-place to dwelling-place, and from apartment to apartment, asking the Bhikkhus:
'Where then, Sirs, is that Blessed One dwelling now, the Arahat Buddha? For we desire to visit that Blessed One, the Arahat Buddha.'
'This, friend, is his dwelling-place, the door of which is shut. Go up therefore quietly, and without crossing the threshold, enter into the verandah, and knock at the cross-bar. The Blessed One will open the door to thee.'
5. So Roga the Malla did so, and the Blessed One opened the door. And Roga the Malla entered into the dwelling-place, and saluted the Blessed One and took his seat on one side. And to Roga the Malla sitting there the Blessed One preached in due course: that is to say, he talked to him of giving; of moral conduct; of heaven; of the danger of vanity, of the corruption of lusts; and of the advantages of renunciation. When the Blessed One saw that the mind of Roga the Malla was prepared, impressible, free from obstacles to understanding the truth, elated, and believing, then he preached that which is the principal doctrine of the Buddhas, namely, Suffering, the Cause of suffering, the Cessation of suffering, and the Path. And just as a clean cloth, free from black specks, properly takes the dye, thus did Roga the Malla, even while sitting there, obtain the pure and spotless eye of the truth (that is, the knowledge that), 'Whatsoever is subject to the condition of beginning, that is subject also to the condition of cessation.' And Roga the Malla, having seen the truth, having mastered the truth, having understood the truth, having penetrated the truth, having overcome uncertainty, having dispelled all doubts, having gained full knowledge, dependent on no one else for knowledge of the doctrine of the Teacher, thus spake to the Blessed One:
'May the venerable one be pleased, Lord, to
receive from me alone, and not from others, the requisites of the Order: that is to say, robes, and food, and dwelling-places, and medicine for the use of the sick.'
'Whosoever, Roga, with the knowledge of a disciple, and with the insight of a disciple 1, has perceived the Truth, even as thou hast, they also will think, "Oh! that the venerable ones would be pleased to receive from me alone, and not from others, the requisites of the order." Therefore, Roga, they shall receive them from you, indeed, but also from others.'
6. Now at that time a certain succession had been fixed, in which the inhabitants of Kusinârâ should each in succession provide food for the Samgha. And it occurred to Roga the Malla, who had not received a place in the succession, thus: What if I were to inspect the Samgha's storehouse, and provide whatever I found wanting in the storehouse?' And on inspecting the storehouse, he found there no potherbs, and no meal 2.
Then Roga the Malla went up to the place where the venerable Ânanda was, and when he had come there, he spake to the venerable Ânanda thus:
'It occurred to me (&ç., as before, down to:) and no meal. If, Ânanda, I were to provide potherbs and meal, would the Blessed One accept them at my hands?'
7. The venerable Ânanda told this thing to the Blessed One.
'Very good, then, Ânanda. Let him provide them.'
'Very good, then, Roga. Provide them accordingly.'
Then Roga the Malla at the end of the night, after he had had a quantity of potherbs and meal made ready, offered them to the Blessed One, saying, 'May the Blessed One accept at my hands the potherbs and the meal.'
'Very good, then, Roga. Present them to the Bhikkhus.'
The Bhikkhus, fearing to offend, did not accept them.
'Accept them, O Bhikkhus, and make use of them.'
8. Then Roga the Malla, with his own hand, offered to the company of the Bhikkhus with the Buddha at their head, and satisfied them with the potherbs and the meal. And when the Blessed One had finished his meal, and had cleansed his hands and the bowl, he (Roga) took his seat on one side. And when he was so seated the Blessed One taught, and incited, and conversed, and gladdened Roga the Malla with religious discourse. And Roga the Malla, when he had been taught, &c., rose from his seat and departed thence.
And the Blessed One, on that occasion, and in that connection, when he had delivered a religious discourse, addressed the Bhikkhus, and said:
'I allow you, O Bhikkhus, all kinds of potherbs 1, and all kinds of meal 2.'
135:1 That is, the square kahâpanas of copper or bronze, figured in the Bârhut has-reliefs, and mentioned in the Dhammapada. See Rh. D.'s 'Ancient Coins and Measures,' p. 4, § 5.
135:2 Bahukato; only found in this passage. Buddhaghosa says, Nâham bhante Ânanda bahukato ti nâham Buddhâdi-gatapasâda-bahumânena idhâgato ti dassetî ti. Here Buddhâdi means the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Samgha.
136:1 Mahiddhiyo, where, as so often elsewhere, Iddhi has no supernatural connotation. Compare the passages quoted above in our note on I, 15, 2.
136:2 Compare Rh. D., 'Buddhist Birth Stories,' p. 112.
138:1 Sekhena, as opposed to asekhena. That is, with the knowledge of one who is not himself an Arahat. See our note on Mahâvagga I, 7, 13.
138:2 See the note at the end; of § 8.
139:1 Sabbañ ka tâkan (sic) ti sappi-âdîhi pakkam vâ apakkam vâ yam kiñki tâkam (B.)
139:2 Pittha-khâdaniyan ti pitthamayam khâdaniyam (B.)