[386. {389.}1 Soṇakoṭivīsa2]

When Vipassi’s dispensation3
[arose], I made a single cave4
in Bandhumā, royal city,
for the monks5 in four directions. (1) [3326]

Covering6 the floor of the cave
with rugs, I dedicated [it].
Happy, with rapture in [my] heart,
I then made this aspiration: (2) [3327]

“Were I to please7 a Sambuddha
and to get to renounce [the world],8
I should attain ultimate peace
and the unexcelled nirvana.” (3) [3328]

Just because of those good roots,
transmigrating ninety aeons,
born as a god or else a man,
I shined, a doer of merit. (4) [3329]

As the remainder of that deed,
here in this final existence,
I was born as the only son
of CChampa’s foremost millionaire. (5) [3330]

Having heard that I had been born,9
this was the wish of my father:
“I am giving to this [young] boy
an entire two hundred million.”10 (6) [3331]

Hair four fingers wide was produced
on the soles of both of my feet.
It was fine and soft to the touch,
beautiful, just like cotton wool.11 (7) [3332]

In the past for ninety aeons,
[and] this [aeon] one more than that,
I’ve not come to know my feet placed
on [any] ground that lacks a rug. (8) [3333]

The Sambuddha was pleased by me;
I went forth into homelessness.
I have attained arahantship;
cooled off, I am in nirvana.12 (9) [3334]

Appointed by the All-Seer
“foremost among resolute [monks,]”13
[I’m] undefiled, an arahant,
six knowledge-holder, powerful.14 (10) [3335]

In the ninety-one aeons since
I gave [the Buddha] that gift then,
I’ve come to know no bad rebirth:
that’s the fruit of giving a cave. (11) [3336]

Being in Best Buddha’s presence
was a very good thing for me.
The three knowledges are attained;
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (12) [3337]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Like elephants with broken chains,
I am living without constraint. (13) [3338]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (14) [3339]

Soṇa Koṭivisa Thera
in front of the monks’ Assembly,
being asked questions [then] answered
on the great Lake Anotatta. [3340]15

Thus indeed Venerable Soṇakoṭivīsa Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Soṇakoṭivīsa Thera is finished.

  1. Apadāna numbers provided in {fancy brackets} correspond to the BJTS edition, which contains more individual poems than does the PTS edition dictating the main numbering of this translation.

  2. “Golden One [Worth] Two Hundred Million.” Apparently identical with Soṇa Koḷivisa, “the Golden Koḷiyan,” a.k.a. Koḷiyavessa, “the Koḷiyan vaiśya,” see DPPN, II:1293-1294.

  3. pāvacchane, lit., “word”

  4. lit., “a single cave was made by me”

  5. saṅgha, lit., “Assembly [of monks]”

  6. santharitvā, lit., “having spread out on”

  7. ārdhayeyyan, please, propitiate

  8. lit., “and were I to receive going forth/renunciation”

  9. lit., “right when I had been born, having heard”

  10. lit., “twenty koṭis.”

  11. reading tūlapicchusamā subhā with BJTS

  12. lit., “I am cooled off, nirvana-ed (or gone out, nibbuto)”

  13. aggo āraddhaviriyānaŋ

  14. chaḷabhiññāmahiddhiko, lit., possessors of the six special knowledges who have great (magical, iddhi) power.”

  15. This verse does not appear in the PTS edition, hence only has a BJTS number in this translation. The Pāli is: thero koṭiviso soṇo/bhikkhusaṅghassa aggato/pañhaṃ puṭṭho viyākāsi/anotatte mahāsare ti//