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LOTUS SUTRA - Chapter 6. Announcement of Future Destiny

After pronouncing these stanzas the Lord addressed the complete assembly of monks: I announce to you, monks, I make known to you that the monk Kâsyapa, my disciple, here present, shall do homage to thirty thousand kotis of Buddhas; shall respect, honour, and worship them; and shall keep the true law of those Lords and Buddhas. In his last bodily existence in the world Avabhâsa (i. e. lustre), in the age (Æon) Mahâvyûha (i.e. great division) he shall be a Tathâgata, an Arhat, &c. &c., by the name of Rasmiprabhâsa (i.e. beaming with rays). His lifetime shall last twelve intermediate kalpas, and his true law twenty intermediate kalpas; the counterfeit of his true law shall last as many intermediate kalpas. His Buddha-field will be pure, clean, devoid of stones, grit, gravel; of pits and precipices; devoid of gutters and dirty pools; even, pretty, beautiful, and pleasant to see; consisting of lapis lazuli, adorned with jewel-trees, and looking like a checker-board with eight compartments set off with gold threads. It will be strewed with flowers, and many hundred thousand Bodhisattvas are to appear in it. As to disciples, there will be innumerable hundred thousands of myriads of kotis of them. Neither Mâra the evil one, nor his host will be discoverable in it, though Mâra and his followers shall afterwards be there; for they will apply themselves to receive the true law under the command of that very Lord Rasmiprabhâsa.

And on that occasion the Lord uttered the following stanzas:

1. With my Buddha-eye, monks, I see that the senior Kâsyapa here shall become a Buddha at a future epoch, in an incalculable Æon, after he shall have paid homage to the most high of men.

2. This Kâsyapa shall see fully thirty thousand kotis of Ginas, under whom he shall lead a spiritual life for the sake of Buddha-knowledge.

3. After having paid homage to those highest of men and acquired that supreme knowledge, he shall in his last bodily existence be a Lord of the world, a matchless, great Seer.

4. And his field will be magnificent, excellent, pure, goodly, beautiful, pretty, nice, ever delightful, and set off with gold threads.

5. That field, monks, (appearing like) a board divided into eight compartments, will have several jewel-trees, one in each compartment, from which issues a delicious odour.

6. It will be adorned with plenty of flowers, and embellished with variegated blossoms; in it are no pits nor precipices; it is even, goodly, beautiful.

7. There will be found hundreds of kotis of Bodhisattvas, subdued of mind and of great; magical power, mighty keepers of Sûtrântas of great extension.

8. As to disciples, faultless, princes of the law, standing in their last period of life, their number can never be known, even if one should go on counting for Æons, and that with the aid of divine knowledge.

9. He himself shall stay twelve intermediate kalpas, and his true law twenty complete Æons; the counterfeit is to continue as many Æons, in the domain of Rasmiprabhâsa.

Thereupon the venerable senior Mahâ-Maudgalyâyana, the venerable Subhûti, and the venerable Mahâ-Kâtyâyana, their bodies trembling, gazed up to the Lord with unblenching eyes, and at the same moment severally uttered, in mental concert, the following stanzas :

10. O hallowed one (Arhat), great hero, Sâkya-lion, most high of men! out of compassion to us speak the Buddha-word.

11. The highest of men, the Gina, he who knows the fatal term, will, as it were, sprinkle us with nectar by predicting our destiny also.

12. (It is as if) a certain man, in time of famine, comes and gets good food, but to whom, when the food is already in his hands, they say that he should wait.

13. Similarly it was with us, who after minding the lower vehicle, at the calamitous conjuncture of a bad time, were longing for Buddha-knowledge.

14. But the perfectly-enlightened great Seer has not yet favoured us with a prediction (of our destiny), as if he would say: Do not eat the food that has been put into your hand.

15. Quite so, O hero, we were longing as we heard the exalted voice (and thought): Then shall we be at rest [And felicitous, blest, beatified (nirvritra)], when we shall have received a prediction.

16. Utter a prediction, O great hero, so benevolent and merciful! let there be an end of our feeling of poverty!

And the Lord, who in his mind apprehended the thoughts arising in the minds of those great senior disciples, again addressed the complete assembly of monks: This great disciple of mine, monks, the senior Subhûti, shall likewise pay homage to thirty hundred thousand myriads of kotis of Buddhas; shall show them respect, honour, reverence, veneration, and worship. Under them shall he lead a spiritual life and achieve enlightenment. After the performance of such duties shall he, in his last bodily existence, become a Tathâgata in the world, an Arhat, &c. &c., by the name of Sasiketu [moon-signal].

His Buddha-field will be called Ratnasambhava and his epoch Ratnaprabhâsa. And that Buddha-field will be even, beautiful, crystalline, variegated with jewel-trees, devoid of pits and precipices, devoid of sewers, nice, covered with flowers. And there will men have their abode in palaces (or towers) given them for their use. In it will be many disciples, innumerable, so that it would be impossible to terminate the calculation. Many hundred thousand myriads of kotis of Bodhisattvas also will be there. The lifetime of that Lord is to last twelve intermediate kalpas; his true law is to continue twenty intermediate kalpas, and its counterfeit as many. That Lord will, while standing poised in the firmament [Properly, standing as a great meteor], preach the law to the monks, and educate many thousands of Bodhisattvas and disciples.

And on that occasion the Lord uttered the following stanzas:

17. I have something to announce monks, something to make known; listen then to me: The senior Subhûti, my disciple, shall in days to come be a Buddha.

18. After having seen of most mighty Buddhas thirty myriads of kotis in full, he shall enter upon the straight course to obtain this knowledge.

19. In his last bodily existence shall the hero, possessed of the thirty-two distinctive signs, become a great Seer, similar to a column of gold, beneficial and bounteous to the world.

20. The field where that friend of the world shall save myriads of kotis of living beings will be most beautiful, pretty, and delightful to people at large.

21. In it will be many Bodhisattvas to turn the wheel that never rolls back (or never deviates); endowed with keen faculties they will, under that Gina, be the ornaments of the Buddha-field.

22. His disciples are so numerous as to pass calculation and measure; gifted with the six transcendent faculties, the triple science and magic power; firm in the eight emancipations.

23. His magic power, while he reveals supreme enlightenment, is inconceivable. Gods and men, as numerous as the sands of the Ganges, will always reverentially salute him with joined hands.

24. He shall stay twelve intermediate kalpas; the true law of that most high of men is to last twenty intermediate kalpas and the counterfeit of it as many.

Again the Lord addressed the complete assembly of monks: I announce to you, monks, I make known that the senior Mahâ-Katyâyana here present, my disciple, shall pay homage to eight thousand kotis of Buddhas; shall show them respect, honour, reverence, veneration, and worship; at the expiration of those Tathâgatas he shall build Stûpas, a thousand yoganas in height, fifty yoganas in circumference, and consisting of seven precious substances, to wit, gold, silver, lapis lazuli, crystal, red pearl, emerald, and, seventhly, coral. Those Stûpas he shall worship with flowers, incense, perfumed wreaths, ointments, powder, robes, umbrellas, banners, flags, triumphal streamers. Afterwards he shall again pay a similar homage to twenty kotis of Buddhas; show them respect, honour, reverence, veneration, and worship. Then in his last bodily existence, his last corporeal appearance, he shall be a Tathâgata in the world, an Arhat, &c. &c., named Gambûnada-prabhâsa (i.e. gold-shine), endowed with science and conduct, &c. His Buddha-field will be thoroughly pure, even, nice, pretty, beautiful, crystalline, variegated with jeweltrees, interlaced with gold threads, strewed with flowers, free from beings of the brute creation, hell, and the host of demons, replete with numerous men and gods, adorned with many hundred thousand disciples and many hundred thousand Bodhisattvas. The measure of his lifetime shall be twelve intermediate kalpas; his true law shall continue twenty intermediate kalpas and its counterfeit as many.

And on that occasion the Lord uttered the following stanzas:

25. Listen all to me, ye monks, since I am going to utter an infallible word . Katyâyana here, the senior, my disciple, shall render worship to the Leaders.

26. He shall show veneration of various kinds and in many ways to the Leaders, after whose expiration he shall build Stûpas, worshipping them with flowers and perfumes.

27. In his last bodily existence he shall be a Gina, in a thoroughly pure field, and after acquiring full knowledge he shall preach to a thousand kotis of living beings.

28. He shall be a mighty Buddha and illuminator, highly honoured in this world, including the gods, under the name of Gâmbunada-prabhâsa, and save kotis of gods and men.

29. Many Bodhisattvas as well as disciples, beyond measure and calculation, will in that field adorn the reign of that Buddha, all of them freed from existence and exempt from existence.

Again the Lord addressed the complete assembly of monks: I announce to you, monks, I make known, that the senior Mahâ-Maudgalyâyana here present, my disciple, shall propitiate twenty-eight thousand Buddhas and pay those Lords homage of various kinds; he shall show them respect, &c., and after their expiration build Stûpas consisting of seven precious substances, to wit, gold, silver, lapis lazuli, crystal, red pearl, emerald, and, seventhly, coral; (Stûpas) a thousand yoganas in height and five hundred yoganas in circumference, which Stilpas he shall worship in different ways, with flowers, incense, perfumed wreaths, ointments, powder, robes, umbrellas, banners, flags, and triumphal streamers.

Afterwards he shall again pay a similar worship to twenty hundred thousand kotis of Buddhas; he shall show respect, &c., and in his last bodily existence become in the world a Tathâgata, &c., named Tamâlapatrakandanagandha, endowed with science and conduct, &c. The field of that Buddha will be called Manobhirâma; his period Ratipratipûrna. And that Buddha-field will be even, nice, pretty, beautiful, crystalline, variegated with jewel-trees, strewn with detached flowers, replete with gods and men, frequented by hundred thousands of Seers, that is to say, disciples and Bodhisattvas. The measure of his lifetime shall be twenty-four intermediate kalpas; his true law is to last forty intermediate kalpas and its counterfeit as many.

And on that occasion the Lord uttered the following stanzas:

30. The scion of the Mudgala-race, my disciple here, after leaving human existence shall see twenty thousand mighty Ginas and eight (thousand) more of these faultless beings.

31. Under them he shall follow a course of duty, trying to reach Buddha-knowledge; he shall pay homage in various ways to those Leaders and to the most high of men.

32. After keeping their true law, of wide reach and sublime, for thousands of kotis of Æons, he shall at the expiration of those, Sugatas worship their Stûpas.

33. In honour of those most high Ginas, those mighty beings I so beneficial to the world, he shall erect Stûpas consisting of precious substances, and decorated with triumphal streamers, worshipping them with flowers, perfumes, and the sounds of music.

34. At the period of his last bodily existence he shall, in a nice and beautiful field, be a Buddha bounteous and compassionate to the world, under the name of Tamâlapatrakandanagandha.

35. The measure of that Sugata's life shall be fully twenty-four intermediate kalpas, during which he shall be assiduous in declaring the Buddha-rule to men and gods.

36. That Gina shall have many thousands of kotis of disciples, innumerable as the sands of the Ganges, gifted with the six transcendent faculties and the triple science, and possessed of magic power, under the command of that Sugata.

37. Under the reign of that Sugata there shall also appear numerous Bodhisattvas, many thousands of them, unable to slide back (or to deviate), developing zeal, of extensive knowledge and studious habits.

38. After that Gina's expiration his true law shall measure in time twenty-four intermediate kalpas in full; its counterfeit shall have the same measure.

39. These are my five mighty disciples whom I have destined to supreme enlightenment and to become in future self-born Ginas; now hear from me their course. [In this chapter only four disciples are mentioned; the fifth must be Sâriputra, whose destination has been predicted before].

End of LOTUS SUTRA - Chapter 6. Announcement of Future Destiny horizotal line T.o.C . Previous Chapter « | . 01. 02. 03. 04. 05. 06. 07. 08. 09. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. | » Next Chapter



 



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