Chapter XXVI - BRAHMANA VAGGA - The Brahmana

A BRAHMANA GIVES UP CRAVING

A BRAHMANA GIVES UP CRAVING

Yo' dha tanham pahatvana anagaro paribbaje
Tanha bhava parikkhinam tam aham brumi brahmanam.
[416]


He who in this world giving up craving, would renounce worldly life and become a homeless one,
he who has destroyed craving and has come to the end of existence, - him I call a brahmana. [416]



XXVI:34 The celestial mansion of Jotika

Jotika was a famous rich man from Rajagaha. He lived in a stately mansion. There were seven walls around his mansion, each of which had an entrance guarded by some spirits. The fame of his wealth spread far and wide, and many people came to see his mansion. On one occasion, King Bimbisara came to visit Jotika bringing his son Ajata Sattu with him. Ajata Sattu seeing the grandeur of Jotika's mansion vowed that he would not allow Jotika to live in such a magnificent mansion when he became king. On the king's departure from his house, Jotika presented the king with a large priceless ruby. It was the custom of Jotika to give presents to all visitors who came to see him.


When Ajata Sattu ascended the throne after killing his father, he came with his soldiers to take the mansion of Jotika by force. But as all the gates were guarded by the spirits, Ajata Sattu and his soldiers had to retreat. The king proceeded to the Veluvana monastery and he found Jotika listening to a discourse given by the Buddha. Seeing Jotika at the feet of the Buddha, the king exclaimed, 'After making your guards fight me, you are now pretending to be listening to a discourse!' Jotika realised that the king had gone to take his place by force and that he had been compelled to retreat.


In a past existence, Jotika had made a solemn wish that his property might not be taken away from him against his wish. And this wish had been fulfilled. So Jotika said to him, 'O king! my property cannot be taken away against my wish.' Saying this, he stretched out his ten fingers and asked the king to take off the rings he was wearing on his fingers. The king tried hard to take them off but did not succeed. Jotika then asked the king to spread out a piece of cloth and as Jotika put his fingers on the cloth, all the rings slipped out from his fingers and he presented them to the king. Then Jotika requested that he be permitted to join the Order. Soon after entering the Order, Jotika attained Arahanthood.


One day, when other bhikkhus asked him whether he had any more craving left in him for his mansion, his wealth, he answered that he did not. The bhikkhus asked the Buddha, 'Venerable Sir! Jotika claims to have attained Arahanthood. Is it true?' The Buddha replied, 'Bhikkhus! Jotika speaks the truth; he does not have any more craving in him. He is now an Arahant.'