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Sariputta And Moggallana

At that time Sariputta and Moggallana, two Brahmans and chiefs of
the followers of Sanjaya, led a religious life. They had promised
each other: "He who first attains Nirvana shall tell the other

Sariputta seeing the venerable Assaji begging for alms, modestly
keeping his eyes to the ground and dignified in deportment,[1]
exclaimed: "Truly this samana has entered the right path; I will
ask him in whose name he has retired from the world and what
doctrine he professes." Being addressed by Sariputta, Assaji
replied: "I am a follower of the Buddha, the Blessed One, but
being a novice I can tell you the substance only of the

Said Sariputta: "Tell me, venerable monk, it is the substance I
want." And Assaji recited the stanza:

"The Buddha did the cause unfold
Of all the things that spring from causes.
And further the great sage has told
How finally all passion pauses."

Having heard this stanza, Sariputta obtained the pure and
spotless eye of truth and said: "Now I see clearly, whatsoever is
subject to origination is also subject to cessation. If this be
the doctrine I have reached the state to enter Nirvana which
heretofore has remained hidden from me."

Sariputta went to Moggallana and told him, and both said: "We
will go to the Blessed One, that he, the Blessed One, may be our

When the Buddha saw Sariputta and Moggallana coming from afar, he
said to his disciples, "These two monks are highly auspicious."

When the two friends had taken refuge in the Buddha, the Dharma
and the Sangha, the Holy One said to his other disciples:
"Sariputta, like the first-born son of a world-ruling monarch, is
well able to assist the king as his chief follower to set the
wheel of the law rolling."

And the people were annoyed. Seeing that many distinguished young
men of the kingdom of Magadha led a religious life under the
direction of the Blessed One, they became angry and murmured:
"Gotama Sakyamuni induces fathers to leave their wives and causes
families to become extinct."

When they saw the bhikkhus, they reviled them, saying: "The great
Sakyamuni has come to Rajagaha subduing the minds of men. Who
will be the next to be led astray by him?"

The bhikkhus told it to the Blessed One, and the Blessed One
said: "This murmuring, O bhikkhus, will not last long. It will
last seven days. If they revile you, O bhikkhus, answer them with
these words:

"'It is by preaching the truth that Tathagatas lead men. Who will
murmur at the wise? Who will blame the virtuous? Who will condemn
self-control, righteousness, and kindness?'"

And the Blessed One proclaimed this verse:

"Commit no wrong but good deeds do
And let thy heart be pure.
All Buddhas teach this doctrine true
Which will for aye endure."

Next: Anathapindika

Previous: The King's Gift

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