[24. Sakulā1]

The Victor, Padumuttara,
was a Master of Everything.
[That] Leader arose in the world
one hundred thousand aeons hence. (1) [769]

For the benefit, happiness
and profit of all beings, the
Best Debater, Thoroughbred Man,2
came into3 [the world] with [its] gods. (2) [770]

Foremost Fame-Attainer,4 Victor,
Fortunate,5 Beautified by Praise,6
the Victor for the entire world,
Widely-Known7 in8 all directions, (3) [771]

the Uprooter of Doubt,9 the One
who Passed Beyond Uncertainty,10
he with an Intention-Filled Mind,11
attained Supreme Awakening.12 (4) [772]

Ultimate Man,13 Progenitor14
of the path that had yet to be,15
proclaimed [that which was] unproclaimed,
produced [that which was] unproduced. (5) [773]

Path-Knower,16 Path-Understander,17
Path-Proclaimer,18 the Bull of Men,
Path-Skilled, the Teacher, [the Buddha,]
was the Best of Charioteers.19 (6) [774]

The Great Compassionate Teacher,
the Leader was preaching Dhamma,
lifting up [all] living beings
sunk in the muck of delusion. (7) [775]

I was born in Haṃsavatī,
rejoicing [all the] kṣatriyans;20
I was then very beautiful,
set for wealth,21 held dear, resplendent. (8) [776]

I was the ravishing daughter
of great king Ānanda and thus,
sister by another mother22
of him named Padumuttara. (9) [777]

Adorned in all [my] ornaments,
along with the royal maidens,
going up to the Great Hero,
I heard [him] preaching the Dhamma. (10) [778]

And then, amidst the multitudes,
the Guru of the [Whole] World23 praised
a Buddhist nun with “divine eye,”
[and] placed her in that foremost place. (11) [779]

I was happy having heard that;
after giving the Teacher alms,
and worshipping the Sambuddha,
I aspired for the “divine eye.” (12) [780]

And then the Teacher said to me:
“Joyful one, that is well wished-for;
you will receive [as you] aspire,
fruit of alms for the Dhamma-Lamp.24 (13) [781]

In one hundred thousand aeons,
arising in Okkāka’s clan,
the one whose name is Gotama
will be the Teacher in the world. (14) [782]

Worthy heir to that one’s Dhamma,
Dhamma’s legitimate offspring,
the one whose name is Sakulā
will be the Teacher’s follower.” (15) [783]

Due to that karma done very well,
with intention and [firm] resolve,
discarding [my] human body,
I went to Tāvatiṃsa [then]. (16) [784]

In this [present] lucky aeon
Brahma’s Kinsman, Greatly Famed One,
[the Buddha] known as Kassapa25
was born, the Best of Debaters. (17) [785]

I was a mendicant back then,
proceeding about on my own.
While wandering around for alms,
I received some26 sesame oil. (18) [786]

Having lit a lamp with that [oil,]
with a mind that was very clear,
every night I attended on
the shrine27 of the Best of Bipeds. (19) [787]

Due to that karma done very well,
with intention and [firm] resolve,
discarding [my] human body,
I went to Tāvatiṃsa [then]. (20) [788]

In whichever place I’m reborn,
in accordance with that karma,
wherever I am wandering,
when I’m gone there, there are large lamps. (21) [789]

Through [any] wall, through [any] rock,
going beyond a mountain [top],
I [can] see whatever I wish:
that is the fruit of giving lamps. (22) [790]

I am [someone who] has pure eyes;
I am blazing forth through [my] fame;
I am faithful, wise and mindful:
that is the fruit of giving lamps. (23) [791]

And now, in [my] final rebirth,
I am born in a brahmin clan,
rich in grain and abundant wealth,
joyful [and] honored28 by the king. (24) [792]

I was complete in every part,29
adorned with all the ornaments.
[One time] standing in a window,
I saw the Well-Gone-One at the
city gate, Blazing Forth through Fame,
Honored by Gods and by People,
Ornamented with the [Great] Marks,
Endowed with [Eighty] Lesser Marks. (25-26) [793-794]

Happy, with a heart that was thrilled,
I chose [to seek] ordination.
After not a very long time,
I attained [my] arahantship. (27) [795]

I’ve mastered the superpowers
[like] the “divine ear” element.
I know the hearts of others [too,]
I have done what the Teacher taught.30 (28) [796]

I remember [my] former lives;
[my] “divine eye” is purified.
Throwing off all the defilements,
I am31 purified, [I’m] stainless. (29) [797]

The Teacher’s been worshipped by me;
[I have] done what the Buddha taught.
The heavy load has been laid down,
the ties to existence severed. (30) [798]

The reason for which I went forth,
from [my] home into homelessness —
I have [now] achieved that purpose:
destruction of all the fetters. (31) [799]

Then the Greatly Compassionate
One placed me in [that] foremost place:
The Supreme Man32 [said,] “Sakulā
is foremost of ‘divine eye’ [nuns.]” (32) [800]

My defilements are [now] burnt up;
all [new] existence is destroyed.
Like elephants with broken chains,
I am living without constraint. (33) [801]

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! (34) [802]

The four analytical modes,
and these eight deliverances,
six special knowledges mastered,
[I have] done what the Buddha taught! (35) [803]

Thus indeed Bhikkhunī Sakulā spoke these verses.

The legend of Sakulā Therī is finished.

  1. a historical nun, remembered as foremost among those who possess the “divine eye” (dibbacchakkhu)

  2. purisājañño

  3. paṭipanno, lit “entered into” “going along”

  4. yasaggappatto

  5. sirimā, or “Resplendent One”

  6. kittivaṇṇagato, lit., “gone to beauty through praise;” “colored by praise”

  7. suvissuto

  8. lit., “from,” abl.

  9. uttiṇṇavicchikicchcho, lit., “he by whom doubt is pulled out”

  10. vītivattakathaŋkatho, lit., “passed over saying ‘how?’”

  11. sampuṇṇamanasaṅkappo

  12. patto sambodhim uttamaŋ

  13. naruttamo

  14. uppādetā

  15. anuppannassa maggassa, lit., “the unborn path” “the path that had not arisen”. Uppanna is from the same root as uppādetā (Producer of the unproduced”) hence a resonance between the first and second feet that is echoed in the third foot, and again in the fourth

  16. maggaññū

  17. maggavidū

  18. maggakkhāyī

  19. sārathīnaŋ varuttamo, lit., “the excellent ultimate of charioteers”

  20. khattiyanandanā

  21. sadhanā ṭhāsiŋ

  22. vemātā bhaginī

  23. lokaguru

  24. dhammapadīpadānānaŋ phalaŋ

  25. BJTS reads “Named Kassapa according to his Lineage (gottena)”

  26. °mattakaŋ, lit., “a measure of”

  27. or “stupa”: cchetiyaŋ

  28. lit., “given pūjā

  29. sabbaṅgasampannā, lit., “endowed with all limbs,” i.e., “had a great body”

  30. satthu sāsanakārikā, lit., “[I am] a doer of the Teacher’s dispensation”

  31. reading amhi (“I am”) with BJTS for PTS āsiŋ (“I was” “I became”)

  32. naruttamo