[470. {473.}1 Ukkāsatika2]

The Blessed One named Kosika,
Meditator, Trance-Loving One,
Buddha, Seclusion-Lover, Sage,
lived on CChittakūṭa3 back then. (1) [4965]

Plunged4 into the Himalayas,
attended by troops of women,
I saw [him], Kosika Buddha,
like the moon on the fifteenth day.5 (2) [4966]

With6 a hundred flaming[-torches,]7
I waited on [him] at that time.
Remaining seven nights and days,
on the eighth [day] I departed.8 (3) [4967]

With a pleased heart, having worshipped
the Self-Become, Unconquered One,
Kosika Buddha, [when] he rose,
I [also] gave one meal [to him]. (4) [4968]

Through that karma for the World’s Best,
the Biped-Lord, the Bull of Men,
I was reborn in Tusitā:9
that is the fruit of [that] one meal. (5) [4969]

During the day and also at
night, there is always light for me;
on all sides for a hundred leagues,
I am permeated by light. (6) [4970]

In the fifty-fifth aeon hence
I was a king who turns the wheel,
lord of the grove of rose-apples,10
victorious on [all] four sides.11 (7) [4971]

My city at that time was rich,
prosperous and well-constructed.
[It measured] thirty leagues in length,
and [it was] twenty leagues in width. (8) [4972]

[My] city was named Sobhana;12
[it] was built by Vissakamma.
[It] did not lack for the ten sounds,13
well-accompanied by cymbals.14 (9) [4973]

No[thing] in that city was [made
of]15 sticks [or of] vines [or of] clay.
Everything was made out of gold,
[and] it was shining all the time. (10) [4974]

Four rampart walls surrounded [it];
they were constructed out of gems.
In the middle, a palmyra
pond16 was made by Vissakamma. (11) [4975]

[There were] ten thousand ponds [as well],
covered with pink and blue lotus,
covered with white lotuses [too],
[all] exuding varied perfumes. (12) [4976]

In the ninety-four aeons since
I carried those torches17 [for him],
I’ve come to know no bad rebirth:
the fruit of carrying torches. (13) [4977]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Like elephants with broken chains,
I am living without constraint. (14) [4978]

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! (15) [4979]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (16) [4980]

Thus indeed Venerable Ukkāsatika Thera spoke these verses.

The legend of Ukkāsatika 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. “Hundred-Flame-er”

  3. = CChitrakūṭa, a mountain in the Himalayas, one of five said to surround Lake Anottata (Anavatapta), composed of all precious metals and famed for golden swans living in a golden cave. DPPN I:869: “It is generally identified with Kāmptanāthgiri in Bundelkhand, an isolated hill on the Paisunī or Mandākinī River”

  4. lit., “plunging”

  5. i.e., when it is full, puṇṇamāse va cchandimā

  6. gahetvā, lit., “taking”

  7. following BJTS in understanding these “flames” as “torches with flames”

  8. agamas’, lit., “I left” “I went [away]”

  9. tusite kāye, lit., “in a Tusitā body” or “in the Tusitā group”

  10. jambusaṇḍa = jambudīpa = India, the South Asian continent

  11. cchaturanto vijitāvi, “possessed of conquest of the four quarters,” a supreme imperial overlord

  12. “beautiful”

  13. reading dasasadda + a + vivittantaṃ with BJTS for PTS dasasaddâvivittan taŋ.

  14. reading sammatāḷa° (BJTS) for samatāḷa° (PTS).

  15. I follow BJTS Sinhala gloss in interpolating “thing” as the subject of the half-verse, which otherwise would mean that sticks, vines and clay were themselves absent from (n’atthi, “do not exist”) in that city.

  16. tālapattī, BJTS gloss tālapaṅkhatīhu

  17. lit., “that,” but given that the torches numbered one hundred, I translate it as the plural pronoun