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glittering with the variegated splendour of gems; decked with rows of streaming banners; laden with offerings of flowers of every hue; and surrounded by the sound of every description of music. Encircling it with this concourse of people, he screened (the bó tree) with a curtain. 1A body of a thousand priests, with the chief théra (son of Moggalí) at their head, and a body of a thousand inaugurated monarchs, with this emperor (Dhammásóka) at their head, having (by forming an inner circle) enclosed the sovereign himself as well as the great bó tree most completely, with uplifted clasped hands (Dhammásóka) gazed on the great bó tree.
While thus gazing (on the bó tree) a portion thereof, being four cubits of the branch, remained visible, and the other branches vanished. Seeing this miracle, the ruler of the world, overjoyed, exclaimed, "I make an offering of my empire to the great bó tree." The lord of the land (thereupon) invested the great bó tree with the empire. Making flower and other offerings to the great bó tree, he walked round it. Having bowed down with uplifted hands at eight places, and placed that precious vase on a golden chair, studded with various gems, of such a height that the branch could be easily reached, he ascended it himself for the purpose of obtaining the supreme branch. Using vermillion in a golden pencil, and therewith making a streak on the branch, he 2pronounced this confession of his faith: "If this supreme right bó branch 3detached from this bó tree is destined to depart from hence to the land of Lanká, 'let it, self-severed, instantly transplant itself into 5the vase; then indeed I shall have implicit faith in the religion of Buddha."
"The bó branch, severing itself at the place where the streak was made, "hovered over the mouth of the vase (which was) filled with scented soil.
The monarch then encircled the branch with 8(two) streaks above the original streak, at intervals of three inches: from the original streak the principal, and from the other streaks minor roots, ten from each, shooting forth and brilliant from their freshness, descended (into the soil in the vase). The sovereign, on witnessing this miracle (with uplifted hands), set up a shout, while yet standing on the golden chair, which was echoed by the surrounding spectators. The delighted priesthood expressed their joy by shouts of "sádhu," and the crowding multitude, waving thousands of cloths over their heads, cheered.
Thus this (branch of the) great bó tree established itself in the fragrant soil (in the vase) with a hundred roots, filling with delight the whole attendant multitude. The stem thereof was ten cubits high: there were five branches, each four cubits long, adorned with five fruits each. From the (five main) branches many lateral branches, amounting to a thousand, were formed. 10 Such was this miraculous and delight-creating bó tree.
1 Lit. " Surrounding himself and the great bódhi tree most completely with a body of a thousand priests who were the heads of fraternities, and with more than a thousand of kings who had received anointment, he gazed on the great bódhi with clasped hands. Then the (small) branches of its right branch vanished, leaving only portions of about four cubits and the stem thereof (adhering to the main trunk)."
2" made this solemn declaration and invocation": the Buddhistic Saccakiriyá partakes of the nature of both. 3 Dele.
4 Insert "
and if my faith in the religion of Buddha be unshaken, then." 5" this golden vase."
9" like a network."
7" rested on the top."
10 Lit." Thus was this great bódhi tree endued with a fullness of beauty that entranced the mind."
¿ The instant the great bó branch was planted in the vase, the earth quaked, and numerous miracles were performed. By the din of the separately heard sound of various musical instruments-by the sádhus" shouted, as well by dévas and men of the human world, by the host of dévas and brahmas of the heavens-by the howling of the elements, the roar of animals, the screeches of birds, and the yells of the yakkhas as well as other fierce spirits, together with the crashing concussions of the earthquake, they constituted one universal chaotic uproar.2
From the fruit and leaves of the bó branch, brilliant rays of the six primitive colours issuing forth, illuminated the whole 3 "cakkavála." Then the great bó branch, together with its vase springing up into the air (from the golden chair), remained invisible for seven days in the snowy regions of the skies.
The monarch, descending from the chair, and tarrying on that spot for those seven days, unremittingly kept up, in the fullest formality, a festival of offerings to the bó branch. At the termination of the seventh day, the spirits which preside over elements (dispelling the snowy clouds), the beams of the moon enveloped the great bó branch.
The enchanting great bó branch, together with the vase, remaining poised in the cloudless firmament, displayed itself to the whole multitude. Having astounded the congregation by the performance of many miracles, the great bó branch descended to the earth.
This great monarch, overjoyed at these various miracles, a second time made an offering of the empire to the great bó. Having thus invested the great "bó with the whole empire, making innumerable offerings, he tarried there for seven days longer.
On the fifteenth, being the full moon day of the bright half of the month" Assayuja," (the king) took possession of the great bó branch. At the end of two weeks from that date, being the fourteenth day of the dark half of the month " Assayuja," the lord of chariots, having had his capital fully ornamented, and a superb hall built, placing the great bó branch in a chariot, on that very day brought it in a procession of offerings (to the capital).
On the first day of the bright half of the month "Kattika," having deposited the great bó branch under the great sal tree in the south-east quarter (of Pátaliputta), he daily made innumerable offerings thereto.
On the seventeenth day after he had received charge of it, its new leaves sprouted forth simultaneously. From that circumstance also the monarch, overjoyed, a third time dedicated the empire to the great bó tree.
The ruler of men, having thus finally invested the great bó branch with the whole empire, made various offerings to the said tree.
(It was during the celebrations of these festivals that Sumana entered Pátaliputta to apply to Dhammásóka for the relics.)8
2 The rendering of this passage is rather highly ornamented. 3" universe."
4" divers ways."
"At the end of the seven days all the snow-clouds, together with the sixcoloured rays, were absorbed into the great bódhi branch, which, resting on the vase and poised in the cloudless firmament, displayed itself unto all the people; and while divers miracles were yet being manifested, the great bódhi branch descended to the earth, astonishing the people greatly."
8 This must have been meant for a note made by the learned translator.
1Thus was celebrated in the capital (appropriately called) "the city-ofthe-lake of flowers," enchanting the minds of devas as well as men, this superb, pre-eminent, grand, bó branch processional-festival, graced by innumerable superb streaming banners (of gold and silver, and other pageantry).
The eighteenth chapter in the Mahávansa, entitled "The Obtaining the great Bódhi branch (by Dhammasóka)," composed equally for the delight and affliction of righteous men.
THE lord of chariots assigned for the custody of the great bó branch eighteen personages of royal blood, eighteen members of noble families, eight of the brahman caste, and eight of the seṭṭhi caste. In like manner, eight of each of the agricultural and domestic castes, as well as of weavers and potters; and of all other castes; as also nágás and yakkhas. This delighter in donations, bestowing vases of gold and silver, eight of each (to water the bó branch with), embarking the great bó branch in a superbly decorated vessel on the river (Ganges); and embarking likewise the high priestess Sanghamittá with her eleven priestesses, and the ambassador Ariṭṭha at the head (of his mission); (the monarch), departing out of his capital, and preceding (the river procession with his army) through the wilderness of Viñjhá, reached Támalitta on the seventh day. The dévas, nágás, and men (during his land progress) kept up splendid festivals of offerings (on the river), and they also reached (the port of embarkation) on the seventh day.
The sovereign, disembarking the great bó branch on the shore of the main ocean, again made an offering of his empire. This delighter in good works having thus finally invested the great bó branch with the whole empire on the first day of the bright half of the moon in the month of Maggasira," thereupon he (gave direction) that the great bó branch, which was deposited (at the foot of the sal tree), should be lifted up by the aforesaid four high-caste tribes, (assisted) by the other eight persons of each of the other castes. The elevation of the bó branch having been effected by their means, (the monarch) himself descending there (into the sea) till the water reached his neck, most carefully deposited it in the vessel.
Having thus completed the embarkation of it, as well as of the chief thérí with her priestesses, and the illustrious ambassador Maháriṭṭha, he made this address to them: "I have on three occasions dedicated my empire to this bó branch; in like manner, let my ally, your sovereign, as fully make (to it) an investiture of his empire."
1" Thus this excellent and pleasing (processional) festival of the great bodhi branch, radiant with the mingling of divers streaming banners, celebrated in Pupphapura (the city of flowers'), became the means of expanding the hearts of devas and men (as the sun doth the lotuses).”
* Some MSS. read vessa
herdsmen"; taraccha, "workers in precious metals ";
3 In the original, gópaka, kulinga, doubtful.
4" In order that it might be removed from thence (to the ship), raised the great bódhi, assisted by the (companies of) eight persons from the high caste families assigned for its service at the foot of the sála tree (in Páțaliputta), and himself going down."
The Mahárájá having thus spoken, stood on the shore of the ocean with uplifted hands; and, gazing on the departing bó branch, shed tears in the bitterness of his grief. In the agony of parting with the bó branch, the disconsolate Dhammásóka, weeping and lamenting in loud sobs, departed for his own capital.
The vessel in which the bó tree was embarked briskly dashed through the water; and in the great ocean, within the circumference of a yójana, the waves were stilled: flowers of the five different colours blossomed around it, and various melodies of music rung in the air. Innumerable offerings were kept up by innumerable dévas; (but) the nágás had recourse to their magical arts to obtain possession of the bó tree. The chief priestess Sanghamittá, who had attained the 2sanctification of "abhiññá," assuming the form of the "supanna," terrified those nágás (from their purpose). These subdued nágás, respectfully imploring of the chief priestess, (with her consent) conveyed the bó tree to the settlement of the nágás: and for seven days innumerable offerings having been made by the nága king, they themselves, bringing it back, replaced it in the vessel. On the same day that the bó tree reached this land at the port of Jambukóla, the universally beloved monarch Dévánampiya Tissa having, by his communications with Sumana sámanéra, ascertained the (approaching) advent (of the bó branch); and from the first day of the month of "Maggasira" in his anxiety to prepare for its reception, having, with the greatest zeal, applied himself to the decoration of the high road from the northern gate (of Anuradhapura) to Jambukóla, had (already) repaired thither.
While seated in a hall on the sea-beach, by the miraculous powers of the théra (Mahinda), he was enabled to discern (though still out of sight) the bó branch which was approaching over the great ocean. In order that the hall built on that spot might perpetuate the fame of that miracle, it became celebrated there by the name of the "Samuddásannasálá. Under the auspices of the chief théra, attended by the other théras, as well as the imperial array of his kingdom, on that very day, the nobly formed mahárájá, chanting forth in his zeal and fervour, This is the bó from the bó tree (at which Buddha attained buddhahood)," rushing into the waves up to his neck, and causing the great bó branch to be lifted up collectively by the sixteen castes of persons on their heads, and lowering it down, deposited it in the superb hall built. on the beach. The sovereign of Lanká invested it with the kingdom. of Lanká; and unto these sixteen castes, surrendering his sovereign authority, this ruler of men, taking on himself the office of sentinel at. the gate (of the hall) for three entire days, in the discharge of this duty, made innumerable offerings.
On the tenth day of the month, elevating and placing the bó branch in a superb car, this sovereign, who had by inquiry ascertained the consecrated places, escorting the monarch of the forest, deposited it at the Pácína vihára; and entertained the priesthood, as well as the people, with their morning meal. There (at the spot visited at Buddha's second advent) the chief théra Mahinda narrated, without the slightest. omission, to this monarch, the triumph obtained over the nágás (during the voyage of the bó branch) by the deity gifted with the ten powers.
1 Insert "lotus."
Having ascertained from the théra the particular spots on which the divine teacher had rested or taken refreshment, those several spots he marked with monuments.
The sovereign, stopping the progress of the bó branch at the entrance of the village of the brahman Tivakka, as well as at the several aforesaid places, each of which) was sprinkled with white sand, and decorated with every variety of flowers, with the road (approaching to each) lined with banners and garlands of flowers; and keeping up offerings, by night and by day uninterruptedly, on the fourteenth day he conducted it to the vicinity of Anuradhapura. At the hour that shadows are most extended, he entered the superbly decorated capital by the northern gate, 3in the act of making offerings; and passing in procession out of the southern gate, and entering the Mahámégha garden hallowed by the presence of the four Buddhas (of this kappa); and arriving, under the directions of Sumana himself, at the delightful and decorated spot at which the former bó trees had been planted; by means of the sixteen castes, who were adorned with all the insignia of royalty (which they assumed on the king surrendering the sovereignty to them), raising up the bó branch, he contributed his personal exertion to deposit it there.
The instant it extricated itself from the hand of man, springing eighty cubits up into the air, self poised and resplendent, it cast forth a halo of rays of six colours. These enchanting rays illuminating the land, ascended to the brahma heavens, and continued (visible) till the setting of the sun. Ten thousand men, stimulated by the sight of these miracles, increasing in sanctification, and attaining the state of "arhat," consequently entered into the priesthood.
Afterwards, at the setting of the sun, the bó branch descending, under the constellation "róhiņi," placed itself on the ground; and the earth thereupon quaked. Those roots (before described) rising up out of the mouth of the vase, and shooting downwards, descended (forcing down) the vase itself into the earth. The whole assembled populace made flower and other offerings to the planted bó. A heavy deluge of rain fell around, and dense cold clouds completely enveloped the great bó in its snowy womb. For seven days the bó tree remained there, invisible in the snowy womb, occasioning (renewed) delight in the populace. At the termination of the seventh day all these clouds dispersed, and displayed the bó tree and its halo of six-coloured rays.
The chief théra Mahinda and Sanghamittá, each together with their retinue, as well as his majesty with his suite, assembled there. The princes from Kacaraggáma, the princes from Candanaggáma, the brahman Tivakka, as also the whole population of the land, by the interposition of the dévas, exerting themselves to perform a great festival of offerings (in honour) of the bó tree, assembled there; and at this great congregation they were astounded at the miracles which were performed.
"On the south-eastern branch a fruit manifested itself, and ripened in the utmost perfection. The théra taking up that fruit as it fell, gave it to the king to plant it. The monarch planted it in a golden vase, filled with odoriferous soil, which was prepared at the Mahásana. While they
1" he carried it along the road, which." 2" and."
4 Kájaragáma: Kataragama.
5" While the people were looking on, a ripe fruit from the eastern branch fell, and the théra took it up and.”