[242. Nāgakesariya1]

Gathering both ends of a bow,2
I entered into the forest.
I saw a small lake gathered3 [there],
very clean4 and full of flowers.5 (1) [2465]

Plucking [one] with both of my hands
and saluting on my forehead,6
I [then] offered [it] to Tissa,
the Buddha, Kinsman of the World. (2) [2466]

In the ninety-two aeons since
I did pūjā [with] that flower,
I’ve come to know no bad rebirth:
that’s the fruit of Buddha-pūjā. (3) [2467]

In the seventy-seventh aeon,
[I was] named Pamokkharaṇa,7
a wheel-turning king with great strength,
possessor of the seven gems. (4) [2468]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (5) [2469]

Thus indeed Venerable Nāgakesariya Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Nāgakesariya Thera is finished.

  1. “Ironwood Lake-er” (?); nāga = elephant, cobra, ironwood tree + kesara = small lake

  2. lit., “Having made a bow not two-fold.” The meaning seems to be, “having strung a bow”. The cty. explains that he did this “for the sake of killing deer, etc.”

  3. PTS reads osaraŋ, BJTS and cty read osaṭaṃ; both terms mean “gathered” but it is not clear to me in what sense that term is used; the implication could be that many flowers were gathered together in that lake, or perhaps that many streams were gathered together to form it.

  4. sabbamaṭaŋ. BJTS reads satapattaṃ, “a lotus”.

  5. supupphitaŋ, lit., “well in bloom.” BJTS reads samuṭṭhitaṃ, “risen up,” and the gloss understands him to have seen a lotus flower which had risen up to the surface of the water in the small lake. Cty does not comment on the fourth foot. I have followed PTS here.

  6. lit., “doing añjali on my head.” He holds the flower in his hands, pressed together on his forehead in salutation/as a form of worship.

  7. “Released Lust” = pamokkha + raṇa