Recherche avancée
recherches apparentées: Bluetooth, Virtual Reality, android, smart phone, mtk, smart watch, Keyboard, OPENBOX Voir tous
Image de The Great Tang Dynasty Record of The Western Regions

The Great Tang Dynasty Record of The Western Regions

SKU: FS9104019
This is an account of the travels in Central Asia and India of the seventh-century Chinese scholar-monk Xuanzang. An epoch-making figure in the history of Chinese Buddhism, the Master had a strong impulse to solve theoretical uncertainties by searching for the missing, untranslated original Sanskrit texts, particularly the Yogacara-bhumi-sastra. Violating a government ban on emigration, he slipped out of the empire without official permission. During his sojourn of sixteen years in India, he studied the said sastra and other texts under the tutelage of the Venerable Silabhadra. He visited all the important Buddhist sites and ruins, enjoyed great popularity in India through his learning as an outstanding Buddhist scholar and won the support of the reigning monarchs such as Siladitya and others of India.Upon his return, he was requested by the Emperor to write a book about the journey for his reference. The Record was completed in 646 C.E., the year after his return to the capitol. It was appended some seven hundred years after the time of Xuanzang to include Zheng He's visit to Sri Lanka during the reign of Emperor Chengzu (r. 1403-24) of the Ming dynasty.The Record has been of great value to Western historians and archaeologists, who used it to fill in certain gaps in the history of India and locate the sites of India's former glories. With its exact descriptions of distances and locations of different places, the Record served as a guidebook for the excavation and rediscovery of such important ancient sites as the old city of Rajagrha, the Temple of the Deer Park at Sarnath, the grottoes of Ajanta, the ruins of the well-known Nalanda Monastery in Bihar, etc. Thus it is not merely a book to be studied by students of Buddhism, but also a substantial and interesting book of reference, providing rich information about medieval India for the general reader.
Reproduction is welcome and allowed for free circulation only.
     

THE GREAT TANG DYNASTY RECORDOF THE WESTERN REGIONS

dBET PDF Version All Rights Reserved© 2017

 

BDK English Tripiṭaka Series

THE GREAT TANG DYNASTYWESTERN REGIONSRECORD OF THE

(Taishō Volume 51, Number 2087)

Translated by

Li Rongxi

BDK America, Inc.1996

Copyright © 1996 by Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai andBDK America, Inc.

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored—electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise—in a retrieval system, or transcribed in any form or by any meanswithout the prior written permission of the publisher.

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 96069942ISBN: Second Printing, 2016978-1-886439-02-3

Moraga, California 94556BDK America, Inc.1675Published by School Street

Printed in the United States of America


 

A Message on the Publication of theEnglish Tripiṭaka

The Buddhist canon is said to contain eighty-four thousand different teachings. I believe that this is because the Buddha’s basic approach was to prescribe a different treatment for every spiritual ailment, much as a doctor prescribes a different medicine for every medical ailment. Thus his teachings were always appropriate for the particular suffering individual and for the time at which the teaching was given, and over the ages not one of his prescriptions has failed to relieve the suffering to which it was addressed.

Ever since the Buddha’s Great Demise over twenty-five hundred years ago, his message of wisdom and compassion has spread throughout the world. Yet no one has ever attempted to translate the entire Buddhist canon into English throughout the history of Japan. It is my greatest wish to see this done and to make the translations available to the many English-speaking people who have never had the opportunity to learn about the Buddha’s teachings.

Of course, it would be impossible to translate all of the Buddha’s eighty-four thousand teachings in a few years. I have, therefore, had one hundred thirty-nine of the scriptural texts in the prodigious Taishō edition of the Chinese Buddhist canon selected for inclusion in the First Series of this translation project.

It is in the nature of this undertaking that the results are bound to be criticized. Nonetheless, I am convinced that unless someone takes it upon himself or herself to initiate this project, it will never be done. At the same time, I hope that an improved, revised edition will appear in the future.

It is most gratifying that, thanks to the efforts of more than a hundred Buddhist scholars from the East and the West, this monumental project has finally gotten off the ground. May the rays of the Wisdom of the Compassionate One reach each and every person in the world.

                                                                        Founder of the English                                                         NUMATA Yehan

 

August 7, 1991                                                         Tripiṭaka Project

 

Editorial Foreword

(In January, 1982, Dr. NSociety for the Promotion of Buddhism), decided to begin the monumental UMATA Yehan, the founder of the Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai task of translating the complete Taishō edition of the Chinese Tripiṭaka (Buddhist Canon) into the English language. Under his leadership, a special preparatory committee was organized in April, 1982. By July of the same year, the Translation Committee of the English Tripiṭaka was officially convened.

The initial Committee consisted of the following members: (late)

HANAYAMA

Shōyū (Chairperson); BANDŌ Shōjun; ISHIGAMI Zennō; KAMATA Shigeo; KANAOKA Shūyū; MAYEDA Sengaku; NARA Yasuaki; SAYEKI Shinkō; (late)

SHIORI Ryōtatsu; TAMARU Noriyoshi; (late) TAMURA Kwansei; URYŪZU Ryūshin; and YUYAMA Akira. Assistant members of the Committee were as follows: KANAZAWA Atsushi; WATANABE Shōgo; Rolf Giebel of New Zealand; and Rudy Smet of Belgium.

After holding planning meetings on a monthly basis, the Committee selected 139 texts for the First Series of translations, an estimated one hundred printed volumes in all. The texts selected are not necessarily limited to those originally written in India, but also include works written or composed in China or Japan. While the publication of the First Series proceeds, the texts for the Second Series will be selected from among the remaining works; this process will continue until all the texts, in Japanese as well as in Chinese, have been published.

Frankly speaking, it will take perhaps one hundred years or more to accomplish the English translation of the complete Chinese and Japanese texts, for they consist of thousands of works. Nevertheless, as Dr. NUMATA wished, it is the sincere hope of the Committee that this project will continue unto completion, even after all its present members have passed away.

It must be mentioned here that the final object of this project is not academic fulfillment, but the transmission of the teaching of the Buddha to the whole world in order to create harmony and peace among mankind. Therefore, any notes, such as footnotes and endnotes, which might be indispensable for academic

Editorial Foreword

purposes, are not given in the English translations, since they might make the general reader lose interest in the Buddhist scriptures. Instead, a glossary is added at the end of each work, in accordance with the translators’ wish.

, entrusting his son, Mr. Not my great regret, Dr. NUMATAUMATA Toshihide, with the continuation and com-passed away on May 5, 1994 at the age of platicon of the Translation Project. The Committee also lost its able and devoted

Chairperson, Professor HANAYAMA Shōyū, on June 16, 1995, at the age of 63. After these severe blows, the Committee elected me, Vice-President of the Musashino Women’s College, to be the Chair in October, 1995. The Committee has renewed its determination to carry out the noble intention of Dr. Numata, under the leadership of Mr. Numata Toshihide.

BANDŌ The present members of the Committee are MShōjun, ISHIGAMI Zennō, ICHISHIMIAYEDA Shōshin, KSengaku (Chairperson),AMATA Shigeo,

KANAOKA Shūyū, NARA Yasuaki, SAYEKI Shinkō, TAMARU Noriyoshi, URYŪZU Ryūshin, and YUYAMA Akira. Assistant members are WATANABE Shōgo and

MINOWA Kenryō.

The Numata Center for Buddhist Translation and Research was established in November 1984 in Berkeley, California, U.S.A. to assist in the publication of the BDK English Tripiṭaka First Series. In December 1991 the Publication Committee was organized at the Numata Center, with Professor Philip Yampolsky as the Chairperson. The Numata Center has thus far published seven volumes and has been distributing them. All of the remaining texts will be published under the supervision of this Committee, in close cooperation with the Translation Committee in Tokyo.

            M    ChairpersonAYEDA Sengaku

November 1, 1995                                                       the BDK English Tripiṭaka             Editorial Committee of

Publisher’s Foreword

In December, 1991, at the Numata Center for Buddhist Translation and Research in Berkeley, California, a publication committee was established for the purpose of seeing into print the translations of the Buddhist works in the BDK English Tripiṭaka Series. This committee processes the translations forwarded by the Translation Committee in Tokyo. It performs the duties of copyediting, formatting, proofreading, indexing, consulting with the translators on questionable passages, and so on—the routine duties of any publishing house. No attempt is made to standardize the English translations of Buddhist technical terms; these are left to the discretion of the individual translator. Represented on the committee are specialists in Sanskrit, Chinese, and Japanese, who attempt to ensure that fidelity to the texts is maintained.

This Publication Committee is dedicated to the production of lucid and readable works that do justice to the vision of the late Dr. NUMATA Yehan, who wished to make available to Western readers the major works of the Chinese and Japanese Buddhist canon.

“Taishō” refers to the Taishō Shinshū Daizōkyō, which was published during the period from 1924 to 1934. This consists of one hundred volumes, in which as many as 3,360 scriptures in both Chinese and Japanese are included. This edition is acknowledged to be the most complete Tripiṭaka of the Northern tradition of Buddhism ever published in the Chinese and Japanese languages. As with all books in the BDK Series, the series number on the spine and title page of each work corresponds to the number assigned to it by the Translation Committee of the BDK English Tripiṭaka in Tokyo. A list of the volume numbers is appended at the end of each volume. For the convenience of scholars who may wish to turn to the original texts, Taishō page and column numbers are provided in the margins of each volume.

Those participating in the work of this committee are Diane Ames, Brian Galloway, Nobuo Haneda, Charles Niimi, and Rev. Kiyoshi S. Yamashita.

             Philip Yampolsky

Chairperson

Publication Committee

 

July 1, 1996                                                                

 

Contents

A Message on the Publication of the English Tripiṭaka

                                                                        NUMATA Yehan                          v Editorial Foreword                                         MAYEDA Sengaku                    vii Publisher’s Foreword                                     Philip Yampolsky                     ix Translator’s Introduction                                Li Rongxi                               xiii

The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions                                  Preface by Jing Bo                                                                                        3

 Preface by Yu Zhining                                                                                        7

Fascicle I

  Thirty-four Countries, from Agni to KāpiśīAgni, Kuci, Bālukā, Nujkend, Shash, Feihan, Sutrūshana, Samarkand,   Kapisi,      Zumathān, Gūzgānān, Talaqān, Kacik, Bāmīyāna, Kāpiśī          Khuttalān, Komidai, Baghlan, Hrum-Simingān, Khulm, Baktra,           Kasanna, Tirmidh, Sahāniyan, Kharūn, Shūmān, Kuvāyāna, Wakhsh,           Mimohe, Kapūtānā, Kuṣāṇika, Khagan, Bukhārā, Betik, Horiṣmīka,                                      

 

Fascicle II

Three Countries, from Lampā to Gandhāra  Lampā, Nagarahāra, Gandhāra                           41

                                                    

Fascicle III                                                                                                               71

    Eight Countries, from Udyāna to Rājapura    Udyāna, Balūra, Takṣaśilā, Siṃhapura, Uraśā, Kaśmīra, Parṇotsa, Rājapura

 

Fascicle IV                                                                                                               97

    Fifteen Countries, from Ṭakka to Kapitha     Sthāneśvara, Śrughna, Matipura, Brahmapura, Goviṣāṇa, Ahicchattra,    Ṭakka, Cīnabhukti, Jālaṃdhara, Kulūta, Śatadru, Pāriyātra, Mathurā,   Vilaśāṇa, Kapitha

 

Fascicle V                                                                                                         121

Six Countries, from Kanyākubja to Viṣaka, Kanyākubja, Ayodhyā, Ayamukha, Prayāga, Kauśāmbī, Viṣaka                                                  

Contents

Fascicle VI                                                                                                    145             Four Countries, from Śrāvastī to Kuśinagara ,Śrāvastī, Kapilavastu, Rāma[grāma], Kuśinagara

Fascicle VII                                                                                                   171             Five Countries, from Bārāṇasī to Nepāla  ārāṇasī, Garjanapati, Vaiśālī, Vṛji, Nepāla

Fascicle VIII                                                                                                 195    The Country of Magadha (1)

Fascicle IX                                                                                                    231    The Country of Magadha (2)

Fascicle X                                                                                                     259          Samataṭa, Tāmraliptī, Karṇasuvarṇa, Uḍa, Koṅgoda, Kaliṅga,  Seventeen Countries, from Īraṇaparvata to Malakūṭa  , Īraṇaparvata, Campā, Kajaṅgala, Puṇḍravardhana, Kāmarūpa,  Kosala, Andhra, Dhānakaṭaka, Cola, Draviḍa, Malakūṭa

Fascicle XI                                                                                                    285          Kiṭa, Valabhi, Ānandapura, Suraṭṭha, Gūrjara, Ujjayanī, Zhizhituo, Twenty-three Countries, from Siṃhala to Varṇu ,Siṃhala, Koṅkaṇapura, Mahārāṣṭra, Bharukacchapa, Mālava, Aṭali, Laṅgala, Pārsa, Pātāsila, Aaṇḍa, Varṇu          Maheśvarapura, Sindhu, Mūlasthānapura, Parvata, Audumbatira,Note on Siṃhala by Zeng He                                                                                                         312

Fascicle XII                                                                                                  315          Krisma, Pārghar, Himatala, Badakshān, Invakan, Kuraṇa, Dharmasthiti,             Twenty-two Countries, from Jāguḍa to Gostana, Jāguḍa, Vṛjiṣṭhāna, Andarāb, Khosita, Huoh, Mungān, Alini, Rāhu, Śikni, Shangmi, Kabhanda, Wusha, Kasha, Cukuka, Gostana Eulogy of Xuanzang                                                                                346        Note by Bianji                                                                                              351

Eulogy of the Buddha                                                                                   344

Glossary                                                                                                        355 Bibliography                                                                                                 359 Index                                                                                                             361

A List of the Volumes of the BDK English Tripiṭaka (First Series)             389

Translator’s Introduction

The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions is the travelogue of the journey undertaken by Tripiṭaka Master Xuanzang in India and some parts of Central Asia in 629–645 C.E. An epoch-making figure in the history of Chinese Buddhism, Xuanzang was born at Chenliu (in the suburbs of present-day Kaifeng municipality in Henan province) in 600 C.E. with the family name of Chen. His ancestral line, according to Bianji’s “Eulogy” appended at the end of this Record, is said to be traceable as far back as the legendary Emperor Shennong, who is supposed to have reigned around 3000 B.C.E. But according to ascertainable historical data, Master Xuanzang was the progeny of Chen Shi, alias Zhonggong, who once served as magistrate of the ancient Taiqiu county during the reign of Yongping (58–75 C.E.) of Emperor Ming of the Later Han dynasty. His great-grandfather, Chen Xin, was the governor of Shangdang prefecture during the Northern Wei dynasty (386–534 C.E.), while his grandfather, Chen Kang, served as an official at the court of the Northern Qi dynasty (561–77 C.E.). His father, Chen Hui, was a learned scholar who devoted himself to the study of Confucian classics and refused to accept government appointments at a time when the country was in turmoil.

Xuanzang was the youngest of the four children of the family. After becoming a novice while he was a youth, he lived with his second brother, Chen Su, who had become a monk previously with the religious name of Changjie at Jingtu Monastery in Luoyang, where Xuanzang started his career as a student of Buddhist doctrines under the instruction of various teachers. At the age of twenty he was fully ordained as a bhikkhu at Chengdu in the fifth year of the Wude period (622 C.E.). In the course of his study he was bewildered by the various theories in the Buddhist texts available in Chinese translations. He had a strong impulse to solve these theoretical uncertainties by searching for the missing, untranslated original Sanskrit texts, particularly the Yogācārabhūmi-śāstra; thus he braved all hardships lying ahead on the journey to India. Violating a government ban on emigration, he slipped out of the empire without official permission. During

Translator’s Introduction

his sojourn of sixteen years in India, he studied the Yogācārabhūmi-śāstra and other texts under the tutelage of Venerable Śīlabhadra, a well-known Buddhist scholar of Nālandā Monastery near Rājagṛha. Xuanzang visited all the important Buddhist sites and ruins, enjoyed great popularity in India through his learning as an outstanding Buddhist scholar, and he won the support of the reigning monarchs such as Śīlāditya and others of India.

When Xuanzang reached Khotan on his way back to China, he brought with him as many as six hundred and fifty-seven books bound in five hundred and twenty bundles that he had acquired in India, carried by twenty packhorses. He sent a message by a merchant to inform Emperor Taizong (r. 627–649) of his forthcoming arrival in the capital. The emperor immediately dispatched a reply, urging Master Xuanzang to quicken his speed in his homebound journey. Upon his arrival in the capital on the seventh day of the first month in the nineteenth year of Zhenguan (645 C.E.), Xuanzang was given a warm and lively welcome by the emperor. In the course of the conversation Emperor Taizong inquired about the conditions in the various regions and countries the master had visited. In reply, Xuanzang informed the emperor of what he had seen or heard concerning the religion, geography, local products, habits and customs, climates, and legends and fables of the different localities of India and Central Asia. Fascinated by his account, Emperor Taizong right away requested Master Xuanzang to write a book about the journey for his reference. This was the cause for the compilation of this Record, which Xuanzang completed in 646 C.E., the year after his return to the capital, with the assistance of Bianji, a monk-scholar of Zongchi Monastery, who was invited by imperial order to help the master in his translation work. Bianji was not merely a steno grapher who took down Xuanzang’s dictation, as he modestly says in his “Eulogy”; he was also an editor who put the master’s oral recitation into the classical style of the Chinese written language. This is why Bianji’s name appears on the title page as the compiler of the Record. The name of Master Xuanzang appears as the translator, perhaps because certain passages of the Record, such as the Jātaka stories, were not his but the work of earlier writers. For further details of Xuanzang’s life, see Li Rongzi, trans., A Biography of the Tripiṭaka Master of the Great Ci’en Monastery of the Great Tang Dynasty (Berkeley: Numata Center for Buddhist Translation and Research, 1995).

Here I should like to mention that the passage at the end of Fascicle XI is an addition appended some seven hundred years after the time of Xuanzang. This

Translator’s Introduction

passage deals with Zheng He’s visit to Sri Lanka during the reign of Emperor Chengzu (r. 1403–24) of the Ming dynasty. Zheng He (1371–1435) was an influential eunuch at the court, and in 1405 he was ordered to lead an official mission to visit various countries in South Asia and around the Indian Ocean. In the course of his voyage, he visited King Bhuvanaikabāhu V (r. 1372–1408) of Sri Lanka. Thus it seems that Zheng He was probably the person who wrote this passage.

From the second half of the nineteenth century onward, when French and English translations of the Record appeared, Indian and Western historians and archaeologists found this work of great value in filling certain gaps in the history of India and locating the sites of former glories of ancient India. With its exact descriptions of distances and locations of different places, the Record served as a guidebook for the excavation and rediscovery of such important ancient sites as the old city of Rājagṛha, the Temple of the Deer Park at Sarnath, the grottoes of Ajantā, the ruins of the well-known Nālandā Monastery in Bihar, etc. Thus The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions is not merely a book to be studied by students of Buddhism but also a substantial and interesting reference providing rich information about medieval India for the general reader.

 

THE GREAT TANG DYNASTY RECORD OF THE WESTERN REGIONS

 

Preface

Jing Bo

I venture to consider that the vast space between heaven and earth is so extensive, and that the dissimilarities of human beings endowed with consciousness and intelligence are so variant, that the Talk on Heaven could not trace their limits, nor could the Comprehensive Map of the Earth distinguish their original sources. From this we may know that it is impossible to relate all the places that are not mentioned in the regional records and lie beyond the reach of the influence and education of the imperial court.

As regards India, it has a long history since its establishment as a country. There saints and sages spring up generation after generation, and the morality of kindness and justice is their common custom. But in the past we never had contacts with that country, and its territory is not conjoined with the Middle Kingdom. It is neither recorded in the Shanhai jing (Book on Mountains and Seas) nor mentioned in the Wanghui pian (“Chapter on the Royal Meeting”). Although Zhang Qian, the Marquis of Bowang, opened the road to the Western Regions, he was inspired in vain by the sight at Bactria of bamboo sticks produced at Qionglai Mountain in China. The Kunming route was obstructed by the mountainous region of Yuexi in the southwest, and so Emperor Wu of the Han dynasty could only excavate the Divine Lake at Chang’an to train his navy, but to no effect. Therefore even though astrological signs had shown the good omen of the birth of the Buddha, his abstruse teachings were impeded from being introduced to China for a thousand years. Emperor Ming of the Han dynasty dreamed of a golden figure with a sunlike halo behind its head, but the divine light of Buddhism was still enshrouded in secret ten thousand li away. When Cai Yin was dispatched to the Western Regions in search of the Buddhist religion, he invited Kāśyapa-Mātaṅga to Luoyang with Buddhist scriptures, which were preserved at the Rock Chamber, but these were not as profound as the texts kept in the Nāga Palace in India. The Buddha’s image was drawn at the Terrace of Coolness, but it was not as fine as the statue erected at Vulture Peak.

After that the governance of the state became faulty and eunuchs and people of ignoble character swayed the realm. They brought disaster upon the Eastern Capital and disrupted the country. The Empress and Empress Dowager started disturbances and split the nation, as one tears a piece of silk into pieces. Political institutions and decrees died out at Hangu Pass and Luoyang, and beacon fires were set to give the alarm at the strategic watchtowers. Thus the cities became blockaded by fortresses at the four suburbs.

India was separated from here by a very great distance. There were, however, occasional inquisitive travelers who visited that country to hunt for novelty. Although they have left us some records, they did not make a full account of the products and topography of the places they visited. They merely quoted passages from books of strange stories and did not make a thorough study of the truth of bhūtatathatā (absolute truth).

Even at the time of the Sui dynasty, when the empire was unified and the

domain considerably expanded, people could only gaze at the sea in the West and regret that they were unable to proceed further. They had to ponder over the situation while looking at the country of Dongli (Tāmraliptī?). It is true that many a man has hoisted banners and flags outside the Yumen Pass, but no record can be found about anyone who successfully crossed the Pamir Range. How could anyone ride through the Snow Mountains and halt for a while beside the dragon lake? This was really because the virtue of the Sui rulers was not pervasive and their prestige not far-reaching.

The House of Great Tang, holding sway over the empire, has opened up the world for the initiation of imperial prospects. The comets [of rebels] have been swept away and the fortune of the nation has been brightened. Its achievements are as great as the creation of the universe, and its brilliance is equal to the light of the sun and the moon. All people are grateful for having gained a new life, as if they had been saved from the mouths of jackals and wolves. Every family is glad about having a new lease on life, as if their souls had returned from the sphere of ghosts and demons. Alien residents of different nationalities reside on Gao Street in the capital, and all distant and desolate places are included in the imperial territory. It may be said that the Ten Spirits Islands are parts of the Imperial Garden, and that the four seas are regarded as its ponds and pools. The Five Emperors of old are slighted and the monarchs of ancient ages are held in scorn.

Preface by Jing Bo

Having entered the gate of the Dharma in his childhood, Dharma Master [Xuanzang] regretted that he had not been to the Jetavana Garden; when he grew up he thought about the traces left by the Buddha and eagerly looked forward to visiting the Deer Park. Thus he lifted up his robe to start the journey to the Land of Purity; this was his long-cherished desire.

At a time when the general mood of honesty was prevailing westward, and in the season when the climate was suitable for officials to take homebound trips to the east, he started his journey, with his pewter staff in hand, in the third year of Zhenguan. Under the spiritual protection of his ancestors, he was able to reach lands with various customs, and he met with many dangers that he eventually weathered safely. With the aid of deities he traversed risky paths, from which he barely escaped with his life. He suffered the abrupt changes of scorching heat and bitter cold, passing through many places before he reached his destination. If we speak of inquiring into the truth, it depends on whether one sees or does not see the difference between the theories of emptiness and existence; research into the sublime teachings lies in whether one has or has not heard about the doctrine of birth and death. Doubts about the sea of truth must be solved to enable all living beings to awaken from the stream of delusion. He collected various scriptures, of which not a single word he did not understand, and he visited all the holy sites, none of which did he not see in person. After having traveled for many years, he returned home and reached Chang’an in the first month of the nineteenth year [of Zhenguan], bringing back six hundred fifty-seven books, which he translated into Chinese by imperial decree.

Dharma Master [Xuanzang] personally visited one hundred ten countries and heard information about twenty-eight countries. Some of them are mentioned in the historical records of previous dynasties, while others are known to us for the first time in the present age. All of them are influenced by the spirit of harmony and enjoy the benevolence of Great Tang. They have paid homage and submitted to the authority of the Emperor, beseeching him to dispatch officials to reform their language. They climbed mountainous paths to come to offer tribute, and they were so merrily entertained at the imperial court that they clapped their hands; dressed in the costume of the Tang, they formed into groups. Regarding their different products and local conditions, as well as their social customs and the mountains and rivers of their lands,

we have to refer to their books for ancient times; for recent times we can inquire of elderly people. Distant are those alien countries but here they appear clearly before our eyes. We need not take the trouble to write letters to find out details that are already written on white silk and entitled The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions in twelve fascicles kept in one cloth slipcase. I humbly consider that the information provided in this book is quite detailed, while certain trivial matters and minor events will, I hope, make up what is missing in former historical works.

This is the preface composed by Jing Bo, Assistant Writer of the Imperial Secretarial Department.

Preface

As the ray emitted from the white curl between the Buddha’s eyebrows illu- 868a minates the whole earth, so the sweet dew of his teachings spreads over the great chiliocosm. Like a golden mirror that shines brightly, the great order of the Tang empire prevails over the whole domain. Having manifested the three realms of the world, the buddha-dharma may be considered the most venerable of all religions. With the light of virtue shining upon the four quarters, the Tang empire possesses the largest territory in the world. After the shadow of the Buddha, the Sun of Wisdom, disappeared, his teachings were introduced to China in the East, and the Way of the Emperor was so glorious that his moral influence reached far to the West.

The Tripiṭaka Master of Ci’en Monastery is named Xuanzang and has the family name of Chen; his ancestors were natives of Yingchuan. When the Yellow Emperor ascended the throne at Youxiong, he controlled Huazhu and established the Chen family. Emperor Shun threw open the doors at the four sides of his audience hall to receive the princes and dukes under his sovereignty, and he laid the foundation of his lofty structure even when he was farming at Lishan. King Wu of the Zhou dynasty conferred the fief of Chen on a descendant of Emperor Shun and made his offspring one of the three respectable families. Chen Ping’s six ingenious stratagems played a glorious part in the establishment of the Han dynasty, and the petitions submitted by Chen Chong and his son Chen Zhong to the emperors of the Later Han dynasty were like brilliant moonlight shining upon the world after sunset. When Chen Shi and his sons and nephews visited Xun Shu and his sons, Jupiter, the star of virtue, appeared in the sky to mark the meeting of virtuous people of great talent. Prominent figures emerged in the Chen clan in successive generations, like huge fishes swimming freely side by side in the sea, or enormous rocs flying high with wings fully extended. By their traditional virtue, not only did the stock of the Chen family prosper but also its branches flourished as those of a distinguished clan.

The Master was born under the favorable auspices of the light of harmony and the appearance of the Star of Virtue. He has deep roots with exuberant foliage, and the source of his Way is profound and long-lasting. In his infancy he had a lofty bearing like the glow of the rising sun and moon, and in childhood he proved to be a good son, as admirable and fragrant as orchids and osmanthus. When he had grown up he studied well the ancient books and his fame spread all over the country, so much so that the local governments of various places vied with each other in inviting him to serve in their offices. He could discern truth from falsehood at an early age and always had compassion and wisdom. He longed to gain a clear understanding of truth and sighed at the limitations of human life. He regarded the red silk ribbon attached to the official seal and the purple belts worn by government officials as snares of the material world, and he thought that the precious vehicles, the ekayāna (One Vehicle), and the esoteric texts were truly the ways leading one out of the world. Therefore he despised all worldly things as dust and rubbish, and talked only about serene and broadminded principles.

His elder brother, Venerable Changjie, a pillar of the gate of Buddhism, was as energetic as a nāga (dragon) in practicing the Way, and his wisdom might be compared with that of Śāriputra of yore. Both those who held office at court and those who were not in office respected him for his good demeanor and learning, and his repute and literary talent were admired by people both at home and abroad. The two brothers had a deep feeling of fraternity in concordance with the ethical relationships between members of a family. The Master was diligent in serving his elder brother and in receiving instruction from him without wasting a single moment. His accomplishments in learning qualified him to be a Chief Monk and thus occupy an outstanding position in a monastery. His virtue coincided with the principle of the Middle Way, and he was well known among his fellow monks. He galloped along the path of equality and comprehended the nine classes of the Buddhist texts, his scope of learning being as extensive as the marshland of Yunmeng. He rowed his way in the sea of abstruse teachings, looking down upon the Four Vedas, which appeared to him insignificant. After that he traveled for several years to various places to attend lectures on Buddhist theories, until he succeeded in his studies and gained achievement in learning.

Preface by Yu Zhining


 


 

In the remote past, at the beginning of time, the sun and moon shone upon the Terrace of Spirituality, and Yang Xiong deliberated about the Way of Heaven, which called for deep thought in one’s mind. Then the teachings of the Buddha were gradually revealed, waiting to be spread far and wide. Holding the jade handle of his chowrie (fly-whisk), the Master waved off the mist 868b on the sea to unveil the billows, just like an experienced wheelwright who knows the essence of his craft or a zither maker who understands the knack of producing musical instruments. He was so well informed that he instructed people with the fluency of water pouring out of a bottle, and he traveled alone far away from his native place in a small boat. While he was still at home, he defeated a boastful man who bragged that he had to wear a copper belt around his waist lest his abdomen should burst under the pressure of the knowledge he had in his possession; when he came to the region of Shu he informed his elder brother that he had the desire to travel abroad. People far and near said to him, “We have heard that the Xun family of old had eight prominent sons, and now we see that the Chen clan has two outstanding brothers. It is true that many distinguished persons have emerged in the region between Ruzhou and the Ying River!”

From his youth until he arrived at adulthood, the Master engaged himself in studying abstruse Buddhist books. Well-known scholars and predecessors grasped the theories of different sects of Buddhism, performing detailed research into side issues and forgetting about the root, plucking flowers while neglecting the fruit. Thus they gave rise to the southern and northern schools with various tenets and contradictory arguments. In the long-standing theoretical contentions he was at a loss what to do, and feared that the translators might have made mistakes and caused confusion, so that he might not be able to get a thorough understanding of the ultimate truth. With this view in mind, he wished to read all Buddhist texts at the Nāga Palace in India.

At a time when the country was most prosperous, and equipped with unparalleled virtue, he started his journey to the remote lands carrying his pewter staff and whisked the dust off his robe. In this manner he left Chang’an behind to proceed with big strides toward the Pamir Range. In his long journey over land and water he experienced all sorts of hardships and risks. He considered the journey undertaken by the Marquis of Bowang not a long one and

regarded Faxian as having traveled only in a limited area. Wherever he went he studied the local dialect and conducted research into the profound theories there; he probed into the essence of the Buddhist teachings in a marvelous way. Thus he was eloquent in debate and became famous in India, and he brought back to China the Buddhist scriptures written on palm leaves.

Emperor Taizong, who ascended the precious throne as a gold wheel king, was a person of elegant character. He granted an interview to the Master in the inner chamber of the imperial palace, showing the consideration due to a learned scholar, and listened attentively to what he said. He personally wrote decrees to express his friendly feeling to the Master and sent palace messengers incessantly to inquire after his health. At the request of the Master, the Emperor composed the Preface to the Holy Teachings of the Tripiṭaka in seven hundred and eighty characters. When the reigning Emperor [Gaozong] was crown prince and living at the Spring Palace, he wrote A Record Relating the Preface to the Holy Teachings of the Tripiṭaka in five hundred and seventy-nine characters. If the Master had not cast the light of his prestige upon Kukkuṭārāma Monastery and had not spread his fame over Vulture Peak in India, how could the emperors have condescended to write such ornamental compositions for the commendation of a contemporary scholar?

Under imperial edict, the Master translated six hundred and fifty-seven Sanskrit texts into Chinese. Having witnessed the strange customs of distant lands, the typical scenes of remote countries, the special products of different places, the peculiar orders of human relations, the regions where the Chinese almanac has been adopted, and the localities where Chinese culture and influence have reached, he wrote The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions in twelve fascicles, in which he cited passages from profound and obscure texts and included comprehensive investigations and detailed textual researches done in such a way as to render it a work of lasting value.


 

Fascicle I

Thirty-four Countries,from Agni to Kāpiśī

  1. The Country of Agni                               18. The Country of Sahāniyan
  2. The Country of Kuci                               19. The Country of Kharūn
  3. The Country of Bālukā                            20. The Country of Shūmān
  4. The Country of Nujkend                         21. The Country of Kuvāyāna
  5. The Country of Shash                              22. The Country of Wakhsh
  6. The Country of Feihan                            23. The Country of Khuttalān
  7. The Country of Sutrūshana                     24. The Country of Komidai
  8. The Country of Samarkand                     25. The Country of Baghlan
  9. The Country of Mimohe                          26. The Country of Hrum-Simingān

10. The Country of Kapūtānā                      27. The Country of Khulm

11. The Country of Kuṣāṇika                      28. The Country of Baktra

12. The Country of Khagan                         29. The Country of Zumathān

13. The Country of Bukhārā                        30. The Country of Gūzgānān

14. The Country of Betik                             31. The Country of Talaqān

15. The Country of Horiṣmīka                    32. The Country of Kacik

16. The Country of Kasanna                       33. The Country of Bāmīyāna1          

17. The Country of Tirmidh                        34. The Country of Kāpiśī

By counting the grand strategies of successive emperors and reading the records of remote events of the past monarchs, we know that when Emperor Fuxi first ascended the throne and when the Yellow Emperor began to rule over the country, they managed the affairs of the people and divided the country into administrative regions. When Emperor Yao of Tang received the Mandate of Heaven to be the sovereign his glory reached the four quarters, and when Emperor Shun of Yu accepted the map of the empire his virtue spread over all the nine districts. Since then only the memoranda recording past events have been transmitted, and if one wishes to hear from the former sages he or she can only listen to the historians who recorded their words.

 

How can these be compared with our time, when good government prevails in the empire under a monarch who reigns without ruling?

As to our great Tang dynasty, it has held sway over the empire in accordance with the Mandate of Heaven; taking advantage of the times, it has controlled the power of governance. The Emperor has united the six quarters into one domain and filled it with his glory, and he has succeeded to the virtuous deeds of the three ancient emperors as the fourth one in order, illuminating the world with his light. His subtle influence has permeated widely and his auspicious edification has extended far. He possesses the power of covering and carrying all things like heaven and earth, and he acts with the functions of both the stimulating wind and the moistening rain. With the Yi tribe at the eastern border coming to offer tribute and the Rong people of the western frontier arriving to pledge allegiance, he has founded an imperial heritage for his posterity; and in quelling rebellion to restore order, he certainly has surpassed former kings. His great deeds have included all those achieved by previous dynasties. Now the whole empire is in such a uniformity that we use the same characters in writing and our carriages have standard wheels to go in the same ruts. This is the marvelous achievement of his consummate government. If I did not mention all these points in my Record, I should have nowhere to praise his great exploits, and if I did not publish them abroad, how could I shed light on his profuse merits? Wherever I went in my journey I inquired about the local conditions and customs, and although I did not do research into their locations, nor did I differentiate their social institutions, I believe that the great merits of Emperor [Taizong] have surpassed those of the three ancient emperors and the five monarchs of old. All living creatures are benefited by his genial influence and every human being who can speak extols his merits. From the Tang empire up to the land of India all the people, either of secluded regions with different customs or of isolated places and alien countries, accept the Chinese calendar and enjoy the fame and teachings of the Emperor. The praise of his military feats has become a topic of conversation and the commendation of his civic virtue is the most popular theme. I examined various books but found no records of these things, and I presume that there is no similar instance mentioned in the genealogical tables. Had I not made this narration, how could I record the beneficial influence of the Emperor? The narratives I have now composed are based on what I saw and heard.

Now the sahā world, consisting of one great chiliocosm, is the sphere of the spiritual influence of one buddha. The four continents under the illumination of one sun and moon within the great chiliocosm are the places where the buddhas, the World-honored Ones, emerge in their incarnation bodies and manifest birth and death to enlighten saints and ordinary beings. Mount Sumeru, meaning “Wonderful High Mountain,” is composed of the four precious substances. It is located in the sea, standing on the golden wheel, under the illumination of the sun and moon in rotation, being the residence of heavenly beings, surrounded by a ring of seven mountains and seven seas. The water in the seas between the mountains possesses the eight virtues. Beyond the seven golden mountains is the Salt Sea. Roughly speaking, there are four habitable continents in the seas, namely, the Videha continent in the east, the Jambu continent in the south, the Godānīya continent in the west, and the Kuru continent in the north. A gold wheel king rules over all these four continents, a silver wheel king administers all except the Kuru continent in the north, a copper wheel king’s domination does not include the Kuru continent in the north or the Godānīya continent in the west, while an iron wheel king controls only the Jambu continent in the south. When a wheel king is about to ascend the throne a great precious wheel of gold, silver, copper, or iron will appear in the air according to his merits, to empower him to rule over four, three, two, or one continent, as the case may be. As the wheel is an auspicious symbol, it is adopted as the title of the kings.

In the center of the Jambu continent is Anavatapta Lake, meaning “No Trouble of Heat,” which is south of Fragrant Mountain and north of the Great Snow Mountains, with a circuit of eight hundred li. Its banks are adorned with gold, silver, lapis lazuli, and crystal. It is full of golden sand and its water is as pure and clean as a mirror. A bodhisattva of the eighth stage, having transformed himself into a nāga king by the power of his resolute will, makes his abode at the bottom of the lake and supplies water for the Jambu continent. Thus from the mouth of the silver ox at the east side of the lake flows the Ganges River, which, after going round the lake once, enters the Southeast Sea; from the mouth of the golden elephant at the south side of the lake flows the Indus River, which, after winding round the lake once, enters the Southwest Sea; from the mouth of the lapis lazuli horse at the west side of the lake flows the Oxus River, which, after meandering round the lake once, enters the Northwest Sea; and from the mouth of the crystal lion at the north side of the lake flows the Sītā River, which, after encircling the lake once, enters the Northeast Sea, or it is said that it flows by a subterranean course to Jishi Mountain, where the water reappears as a tributary of the Sītā and becomes the source of the Yellow River in China.

As there is no ruler now destined to be a wheel king, the Jambu continent is reigned by four lords. The dominion under the sovereignty of the lord of elephants in the south is hot and humid in climate, and it is fit for breeding elephants. In the west the lord of treasure rules over the land beside the sea, where there are plenty of precious substances. The place of the lord of horses in the north is cold and bracing, and it is good for rearing horses. The country of the lord of humans in the east is well populated with amiable inhabitants. The people of the lord of elephants are impetuous by nature, but they are devoted to studies and are especially skillful in miraculous arts. They wear a piece of cloth across the body, leaving the right shoulder bare. Their hair is made into a topknot with tufts falling down on the sides. They live in groups of clans in towns, and their houses are multistoried. In the country of the lord of treasure the people know nothing of propriety and righteousness and overestimate wealth and property. They wear short jackets fastened on the left side and cut their hair short but keep long mustaches. They live in towns and gain profit by engaging in trade. The people under the rule of the lord of horses are of a furious disposition and are cruel man-slayers. They live in felt yurts and are migratory herdsmen. In the land of the lord of humans the people are clever and skillful with obvious sentiments of kindness and righteousness. They wear hats and belts and their garments are buttoned on the right side. Their carriages and clothes are classified according to the ranks and orders of the people, and they are attached to their native land and unwilling to leave it. They have a class of people specially devoted to commerce.

Excluding the lord of humans, the other three lords hold the east as the

     superior direction. Their people build houses with doors opening to the east, and early in the morning they pay reverence toward that direction. In the land of the lord of humans the people respect the southern direction. Such is the general condition of the different customs and modes of living in the diverse countries. As regards the etiquette observed between a monarch and his subjects and that between the superior and the inferior, and the cultural institutions and political systems, the land of the lord of humans excels all the other countries; as to instructions concerning the purification of the mind and liberation from worldly burdens, as well as teachings to relieve one from birth and death, the best theories are in the country of the lord of elephants. All these matters are recorded in classical works and imperial mandates and are also heard from the local people. I have made a careful check about what I saw and heard.

Though the Buddha was born in the West his Dharma has spread to the East. In the course of translation mistakes may have crept into the texts, and idioms may have been misapplied. When the words are wrong the meaning is lost, and when a phrase is mistaken the doctrine becomes distorted. Hence the saying, “It is necessary to use correct names.” What is valuable is the absence of faults!

Human beings are of different dispositions, stubborn or pliable, and speak different languages. This is caused by climatic conditions and by customary usage. As to the varieties of physical features and natural products of the land of the lord of humans, and the different customs and temperaments of its people, they are recorded in detail in our national histories. As to the customs of the land of the lord of horses and the country of the lord of treasure, they are fully described in historical records, and we can give a brief account of them. But as to the country of the lord of elephants, it has never been described accurately in our ancient literature. Some said that it was mostly a hot and humid country, and others depicted its people as customarily fond of kindness and compassion. These are mentioned in topographies, but no detailed information can be found. As the Way is sometimes prevalent and sometimes in hiding, do not human affairs also have changes of fortune? Thus we may know that it is difficult to describe all those who predict the right season to pledge allegiance and who come to submit to the benevolence of the Emperor, or those who, passing one danger after another, seek admittance at Yumen Pass bearing tribute of native rarities and bow before the gate of the imperial palace. This is why in the intervals of my studies during my long journey inquiring for truth I took notes on the conditions and customs along the way.

Up to the Black Range, the customs of the Hu people are prevalent. Although they live together with the Rong people in the same localities, they are distinct tribes and their territories are demarcated. They are mostly aborigines, living in walled cities, engaging in agriculture and rearing cattle. They value wealth and property, and to despise kindness and righteousness is their custom. They have no ceremony for marriage and no distinction between the superior people and the inferior. The wife’s word is authoritative and the husband occupies a low position. They cremate the bodies of the dead and have no fixed period of mourning, but they scrape their faces, mutilate their ears, cut off their hair, and rend their garments. They slaughter domestic animals as sacrifices offered to the manes of the dead. On happy occasions they put on white clothes, while at sorrowful events they are dressed

in black. This is a brief account of the common or similar customs of the tribes; the different politics and various institutions of diverse countries will be described separately as the occasion arises, and the manners and customs of India will be narrated in the following Record.

Going out of what was formerly the land of Gaochang, I started my journey with the nearest country, called Agni (formerly known as Yanqi).

The country of Agni, which is more than six hundred li from east to west and over four hundred li from south to north, its capital city being six or seven li in circuit, is surrounded by hills on four sides with perilous tracks that are easily defended. Spring water flows in a network of channels, leading the water to irrigate cultivated fields. The soil is suitable for growing millet, broomcorn, winter wheat, fragrant jujubes, grapes, pears, crabapples, and other fruit. The climate is moderate and pleasant, and the people are honest and straightforward by social custom. Their alphabet is taken from that of India with slight modifications. The garments of the people are made of felt and hempen cloth. The men cut their hair short without wearing any headdress. As to their currency, they use gold, silver, and small copper coins. The king, a native of the country, is a brave man but he lacks resourcefulness and he indulges in bragging about his own merits. The country has no guiding principle or discipline and government orders are imperfect and not seriously implemented. There are more than ten monasteries with over two thousand monks, who are followers of the Sarvāstivāda school of the Hinayana teachings. Since they practice the scriptural theories and observe the Vinaya discipline of India, the students carefully study these subjects in Indian texts.

They are pure and strict in observing the Vinaya rules, but they eat the three kinds of pure meat together with other foodstuffs, which shows that they are stagnating in the stage of the gradual teaching.

Going from here toward the southwest for more than two hundred li, I climbed over a hill and crossed two large rivers and then reached a plain in the west. After proceeding for more than seven hundred li, I arrived in the country of Kuci (formerly known as Qiuci).

The country of Kuci is over one thousand li from east to west and over six hundred li from south to north, and its capital city is about seventeen or eighteen li in circuit. The soil is fit for growing millet and wheat. It yields round-grained rice, grapes, and pomegranates, and plenty of pears, crabapples, peaches, and apricots. It produces gold, copper, iron, lead, and tin. Its climate is mild and the people are honest and upright by nature. Their writing is taken from that of India but with minor alterations. Their skill in playing wind and stringed instruments is well known in various countries. They dress in brocade and hempen clothes, cut their hair short, and wear turbans. For currency they use gold, silver, and small copper coins. Being a man of Kuci, the king has little resourcefulness and is under the control of powerful ministers. It is their custom to press the heads of their babies into a flat shape with wooden planks. There are over one hundred monasteries with some five thousand monks, who study the Sarvāstivāda school of the Hinayana teachings. Their scriptural teachings and Vinaya discipline follow the example of India, so they study the books on these subjects in the original Indian language. As they eat the three kinds of pure meat together with other foodstuffs, they are still stagnating in the stage of the gradual teaching. But they are pure in conduct and deeply engrossed in studies, and they compete with one another in their achievement of spiritual cultivation.

In front of a deva temple to the north of a city in the eastern part of the country there is a big dragon pond. The dragons of the pond often changed their form to mate with mares and gave birth to dragon colts, which were fierce and unruly, but the offspring of the dragon colts were tamable. That is why plenty of good horses are bred in this country. I heard some old people 870b say that there was recently a king named Golden Flower who, through his sagacious administration and sharp insight into political affairs, convinced

one of the dragons to pull his carriage for him. When the king was approaching death he touched the dragon’s ear with his whip and it then submerged into the pond and hid itself, up to the present time. As there was no well in the city the people drew water from this pond. The dragons transformed themselves into human form and mated with the women. Their descendants were strong and courageous and could run as fast as a galloping horse. In this manner the blood of the dragons was diffused and everybody became a person of the dragon race. Relying on their physical strength, they rode roughshod over others and paid no heed to the king’s orders. Thus the king colluded with the Turks to slaughter all the inhabitants, old and young, in the city. After the massacre not a single person was left living in the city, which is now a deserted place without a trace of human habitation.

More than forty li to the north of the deserted city there are two monasteries separated by a river close to the corner of a mountain. Both monasteries, one on the east side and the other on the west side of the river, are named Cakuri. The images of the Buddha and the ornaments are so beautifully made that they almost excel human craftsmanship. The monks are pure and austere in conduct and are sincere and diligent in their studies.

In the buddha hall of Eastern Cakuri Monastery there is a jade stone about two feet in width, yellowish-white in color, in the shape of a sea clam. On the stone there is a footprint of the Buddha, one foot eight inches in length and more than six inches wide. On fast days it sometimes issues a brilliant light.

There are two standing statues of the Buddha, more than ninety feet in height, one at each side of the road outside the west gate of the capital city. It is at this place in front of the statues that the great quinquennial congregations are held. Every year, for several tens of days around the autumnal equinox, all the monks in the whole country come here to attend a meeting. From the monarch and princes on down to the commoners, all suspend their secular affairs and observe the precepts; they study the scriptures and listen to the discourses on the Dharma for a whole day at a time without feeling fatigue. All the monasteries decorate their buddha images with jewels and gems, dress them in brocade and damask, and carry them in handcarts, counted by the thousand, to conduct what is known as the procession of images, flocking to meeting place. The king always discusses state affairs with his ministers on the fifteenth and the last day of the lunar month and, after consulting with the eminent monks about their discussion, they make a proclamation.

At the northwest of the meeting place I crossed a river and reached Āścarya (“Marvelous”) Monastery. The buildings and courtyards of the monastery are splendid and spacious and the buddha images are well adorned. The monks, quiet and austere in appearance, are diligent in their studies, without negligence. Old people of virtue with much learning and great talents are venerated. In admiration of their good conduct, brilliant scholars come here from distant lands to stay with them. The king and his ministers, as well as the common people and magnates, provide the monks with the four monastic requisites with increasing respect as time goes on.

I heard some old people saying that once a previous king of this country, who revered the Triple Gem, wished to go on tour to worship various holy sites at different places, and he had his younger brother act as regent during his absence. Upon receiving the king’s order the younger brother secretly cut off his own genital organ and put it in a golden casket, as a precaution against possible calumny. He sent the casket to the king, who asked, “What is it?” His younger brother said in reply, “Upon your return, Your Majesty may open it and see.” The casket was then handed to a guard of the king’s 870c retinue for safekeeping during the journey. When the king returned from his trip a slanderer actually accused the regent, saying, “The regent appointed by the king committed adultery in the inner palace.” On hearing this accusation the king was enraged and intended to impose a heavy punishment on the culprit. His younger brother said, “I would not dare evade the responsibility but I hope that the golden casket can be opened.” When the king opened the casket and found a severed male organ contained in it, he asked, “What is this strange thing? What do you want to say about it?” His younger brother said, “When Your Majesty went out on tour and appointed me as regent, I feared that the disaster of a possible [accusation of] calumny might befall me, so I cut off my genital organ to prove my innocence. Now this misfortune has actually happened to me. I hope Your Majesty will make a clear investigation into the case.” The king was deeply surprised to hear this and since then his fraternity toward his younger brother became more profound, so that he was allowed free admission to the inner palace without hindrance.

Later, when the king’s younger brother was walking on the road, he met with a herdsman driving a herd of five hundred bulls to be castrated. On seeing these animals that were about to suffer the same impairment as he had, the king’s younger brother reflected on his own fate and thought, “Is it not due to my past evil deeds that I am now a deformed main this life?” Thus he redeemed the herd of bulls from mutilation with money and valuables, and through the power of his compassion his genital organ was gradually restored. As he regained his masculinity he refused to enter the inner palace any more. When the amazed king asked him why, he told the king all the details. Regarding this as a marvelous affair, the king constructed the monastery in a beautiful style to transmit [his brother’s] good reputation to posterity.

From here going westward for more than six hundred li, I crossed a small desert and arrived in the country of Bālukā (formerly known as Gomo  or Jimo). The country of Bālukā is over six hundred li from east to west and more than three hundred li from south to north, its capital city being five or six li in circuit. The native products, climate, temperament of the people, customs, written language, and law are all the same as in the country of Kuci, but the spoken language differs somewhat. Its fine cotton and hempen cloth is much valued in the neighboring countries. There are several tens of monasteries with more than a thousand monks, who study the Sarvāstivāda school of the Hinayana teachings.

Proceeding northwest from this country for more than three hundred li, I crossed a stony desert and reached the Ice Mountains, which are located at the northern side of the Pamir Range, where most of the streams flow eastward. Snow is accumulated in the valleys, which are freezing even in the spring and summer seasons, and although they sometimes melt a little they soon become frozen again. The path is dangerous and the cold wind blows with a piercing vehemence. There are frequent disasters caused by ferocious dragons that give trouble to travelers. Travelers going by this route should not wear garments of reddish-brown color, nor should they carry calabashes or

shout loudly. The slightest infringement of these taboos will cause immediate disaster. A fierce wind will arise all of a sudden, sand flying in the air and pebbles raining down from the sky. Those who encounter such a catastrophe are sure to die, [or at least] it is difficult for them to escape alive.

Going among the mountains for over four hundred li, I reached the Great Pure Lake (also known as the Hot Sea or the Salt Sea), which is more than one thousand li in circuit. It is long from east to west and narrow from south to north. There are hills around the lake and many streams flow into it. The water is dark blue in color and brackish and bitter in taste. It is a vast expanse of water with huge and boisterous waves. Fish and dragons live together in the lake and supernatural monsters sometimes appear in it. Therefore passing travelers pray to them for good fortune and there are plenty of aquatic animals, though no one would venture to catch them.

From the Pure Lake going northwest for more than five hundred li, I reached the City of Sushe River, which is about six or seven li in circuit, a place where traders of the Hu tribes from different countries mingle their abodes. The soil is good for growing millet, wheat, and grapes but fruit trees are scarce. The climate is windy and cold and the people wear clothes made of felt and hemp. To the west of Sushe River are some tens of isolated cities, each having its own ruler, but they do not obey one another and they are all under the domination of the Turks.

The region stretching from city of Sushe River up to the country of Kasanna is called Suli, and the people are known by the same name. Their language is also known as Suli. The alphabet of their language is brief and simple, having only twenty-odd rudimentary letters, with which a vast vocabulary is formed by a methodical spelling system. The people have rough written records, which are read vertically and are transmitted from teacher to pupil without interruption. They dress in felt and hempen clothes and put on fur and cotton garments. Both their undergarments and their upper clothes fit tightly. They cut their hair short and expose the tops of their heads, or they shave their heads completely, tying a colored silk band on the forehead. They are tall and sturdy in stature but timid in disposition. Their general mood is perfidious and deceptive. They are mostly avaricious and take account of money matters even between father and son. Wealthy people are honored and esteemed and there is no distinction between the well-born and the lowborn. A millionaire, however, may lead a simple and coarse life. Half of the population are farmers and the other half traders.

Going westward from Sushe City for more than four hundred li, I arrived at Thousand Springs. The district known by this name is over two hundred li square, facing the Snow Mountains in the north, with plains on the three other sides. The soil is fertile and damp and there are luxuriant trees. In late spring various flowers bloom as beautifully as embroidered silk. As there are a thousand springs, the district is named as such. The Turkish Khan often comes here in the summer season to avoid the heat. There are flocks of deer, most of them wearing bells and rings. They are docile and friendly with people and do not easily become so afraid as to flee. These animals are pets of the Khan, who has forbidden his subjects to slaughter them on penalty of death, so they can live out their natural lifetimes.

Going westward from Thousand Springs for one hundred and forty or fifty li, I reached the city of Taras, eight or nine li in circuit, being a place where traders of the Hu tribes from different countries make their abodes together. The natural products and climate are roughly the same as in Sushe. Going southward for about ten li is a small isolated town, in which live more than three hundred Chinese families who were formerly taken prisoner by the Turks. Afterward they gathered together all their compatriots and safeguarded this town, in which they settled. They adopted the costume and

etiquette of the Turks but retained the language and ways of life of their own country.

From here going southwest for more than two hundred li, I arrived at the City of White Water, which is six or seven li in circuit. The native products and climatic conditions are much better than in Taras. Going south for more than two hundred li, I reached Gongyu City, which is five or six li in circuit. The plains and marshlands are rich and fertile and covered with luxuriant trees. From here going south for forty or fifty li, I came to the country of Nujkend. The country of Nujkend is more than one thousand li in circuit, and the soil is fertile, tilled and reaped perfectly. The vegetation is luxuriant and there are profuse flowers and fruit. Grapes are grown in large quantities and are highly valued. There are about a hundred cities and towns, each governed by its own ruler, and they are mutually independent in taking action. Although they have clearly demarcated areas they are collectively known as the country of Nujkend.

From here going westward for over two hundred li, I came to the country of Shash (known as the country of Shi in Chinese). The country of Shash is more than one thousand li in circuit, bordering the She River on the west. It is narrow from east to west and long from south to north. The natural products and climate are the same as in Nujkend. There are several tens of cities and towns, each having its own ruler without a sovereign lord, and all of them are under the control of the Turks.

From here proceeding southeast for more than one thousand li, I reached the country of Feihan. The country of Feihan is over four thousand li in circuit and is surrounded by mountains on four sides. The land is fertile and the agricultural products are rich. There are plenty of flowers and fruit, and it is fit for rearing sheep and horses. The climate is windy and cold and the people are stout and brave by nature. Their language is different from those of other countries, and their features are ugly and misshapen. For the last several decades there has been no sovereign ruler in the country; the chieftains compete with one another for power and no one yields to the others. They have delimited the boundaries of their districts by rivers and precipitous mountains. From here going westward for more than one thousand li, I reached the country of Sutrūshana. The country of Sutrūshana is fourteen or fifteen hundred li in circuit, bordering the She River on the east, which has its source in the plateau to the north of the Pamir Range. It is a mighty river of muddy water with rapid currents. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Shash. In this country there is a king who is affiliated with the Turks.

From here going toward the northwest, I entered a great desert in which there is absolutely no water or grass. The roads are lost in the vast waste, and its limits are unfathomable. Only by looking at the huge mountains and following the scattered skeletons can one know the direction and find the path. After traveling for over five hundred li, I reached the country of Samarkand (known as Kangguo in Chinese). The country of Samarkand is sixteen or seventeen hundred li in circuit, long from east to west and narrow from south to north. The capital city is more than twenty li in circuit and is a completely invulnerable stronghold with a large population. Precious goods of different 871c quarters are mostly centralized in this country. The soil is rich and fertile and all kinds of crops are cultivated. The trees of the forests are luxuriant and have profuse flowers and fruit. This country yields many good horses and

its skillful craftsmen are the best among various countries. The climate is mild and temperate but the people are irascible by nature. The various states of the Hu tribe regard this country as their center, and people far and near follow the example of this country in social manners and behavior. The king is a valorous man and the neighboring countries obey his orders. He has a strong military force consisting of a large body of Cakar warriors; the Cakar people are courageous by nature, fearless of death, and without rival in martial skill. From here proceeding toward the southeast, one goes to the country of Mimohe (known as Miguo in Chinese). The country of Mimohe is four or five hundred li in circuit, situated in the middle of a plain, narrow from east to west and long from south to north. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand.

From here proceeding toward the north, one arrives at the country of Kapūtānā (known as Caoguo in Chinese). The country of Kapūtānā is fourteen or fifteen hundred li in circuit, long from east to west and narrow from south to north. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand. From this country proceeding westward for more than three hundred li, one arrives at the country of Kuṣāṇika (known as Heguo in Chinese). The country of Kuṣāṇika is fourteen or fifteen hundred li in circuit, narrow from east to west and long from south to north. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand.

From this country proceeding westward for more than two hundred li, one reaches the country of Khagan (known as East Anguo in Chinese). The country of Khagan is more than one thousand li in circuit and the native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand.

From this country proceeding westward for more than four hundred li, one reaches the country of Bukhārā (known as Middle Anguo in Chinese). The country of Bukhārā is sixteen or seventeen hundred li in circuit, long from east to west and narrow from south to north. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand.

From this country proceeding westward for more than four hundred li, one reaches the country of Betik (known as West Anguo in Chinese). The country of Betik is more than four hundred li in circuit and its native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand.

From here proceeding southwest for over five hundred li, one reaches the country of Horiṣmīka. The country of Horiṣmīka, lying along the Oxus River on both banks, is twenty or thirty li from east to west and over five hundred li from south to north. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Betik but the language is slightly different.

Going southwest from the country of Samarkand for more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Kasanna (known as Shiguo in Chinese). The country of Kasanna is fourteen or fifteen hundred li in circuit, and the native products and customs are the same as in the country of Samarkand. From here going southwest for more than two hundred li, I entered a mountainous region, 872a where the roads are rough and rugged and the narrow path is dangerous. There are no inhabitants and little water and grass.

Going southeast among the mountains for over three hundred li, I entered the Iron Gate. On both sides of the Iron Gate there are precipitous rocks. Although there is a narrow path, it is hardly accessible. The rocky walls standing on both sides of the path are of the color of iron. The door panels are strengthened with iron and many iron bells are hanging on them. As it is in an impregnable position, it is called by this name.

Going out of the Iron Gate, I arrived at the country of Tukhāra (formerly transcribed incorrectly as the country of Tuhuoluo). This territory is over one thousand li from south to north and more than three thousand li from east to west. It borders on the Pamir Range in the east, adjoins Persia in the west, touches the Great Snow Mountains in the south, and occupies the Iron Gate in the north, with the great Oxus River flowing westward through the middle of it. For several centuries the royal family had no offspring and the powerful chieftains competed vigorously with one another, each trying to be the lord of his own district, delimited by rivers and strategic positions, and they divided the country into twenty-seven states. Although each [of these chieftains] has his own clearly demarcated territory they are all under the domination of the Turks. As the climate is temperate illness and pestilence are rampant. By the end of winter and at the beginning of spring, when there is continuous heavy rain, febrile ailments are prevalent in all the countries south of this territory down to the north of Lampā. The monks commence their summer retreat on the sixteenth day of the twelfth month and end it on the fifteenth day of the third month. It is because this place has so much rain that the dates are thus fixed according to the seasons. The people are timid and cowardly and are bad-looking, but in manner they are creditable and loyal and they seldom resort to deception. Their language and manners differ slightly from those of other countries. There are twenty-five letters in their alphabet, by which various words are formed to express all things. Their writing is horizontal, from left to right, and their records have been gradually increased until they exceed those of Suli in number. They use more cotton than hemp in making clothes. For currency they use golden, silver, and other coins, which are different in shape from those of other countries.

Following the course of the Oxus River northward to the lower reaches, one arrives at the country of Tirmidh. The country of Tirmidh is more than six hundred li from east to west and over four hundred li from south to north, its capital city being more than twenty li in circuit, long from east to west and narrow from south to north. There are more than ten monasteries with over one thousand monks. The stupas (known in old times as futu, toupo, tapo, sitoubo, or soudoubo, all erroneous) and the venerated images of the Buddha are mostly miraculous and cause spiritual manifestations.

To the east of this country is the country of Sahāniyan. The country of Sahāniyan is more than four hundred li from east to west and over five hundred li from south to north; its capital city is more than ten li in circuit. There are five monasteries with very few monks.

To the east of this country is the country of Kharūn. The country of Kharūn is over one hundred li from east to west and more than three hundred li from south to north, its capital city being over ten li in circuit. The king is a Turk from Xisu. There are two monasteries with over one hundred monks. To the east of this country is the country of Shūmān. The country of Shūmān is more than four hundred li from east to west and over one hundred li from south to north, its capital city being sixteen or seventeen li in circuit. The king is a Turk from Xisu. There are two monasteries with very few monks.

To the southwest along the Oxus River is the country of Kuvāyāna. The country of Kuvāyāna is more than two hundred li from east to west and over three hundred li from south to north, its capital city being over ten li in circuit. There are three monasteries with over one hundred monks.

To the east of this country is the country of Wakhsh. The country of Wakhsh is more than three hundred li from east to west and over five hundred li from south to north, its capital city being sixteen or seventeen li in circuit. To the east of this country is the country of Khuttalān. The country of Khuttalān is over one thousand li from east to west and more than one thousand li from south to north, its capital city being over twenty li in circuit. It adjoins the Pamir Range and reaches the country of Komidai in the east. The country of Komidai is more than two thousand li from east to west and over two hundred li from south to north, being situated among the mountains of the Pamir Range. The capital city is more than twenty li in circuit. It borders on the Oxus River in the southwest and adjoins the country of Śikni in the south. Crossing the Oxus River to the south, it reaches the country of Dharma sthiti, the country of Madakhshān, the country of Yamgān, the country of Kurān, the country of Himatala, the country of Pārghar, the country of Kishm, the country of Rāhula, the country of Ārhan, and the country of Mungān. To the southeast of the country of Warwālīz are the countries of Khost and Andarāb. Accounts of these countries may be found in the descriptions of my return journey.

To the southwest of the country of Warwālīz is the country of Baghlan. The country of Baghlan is more than fifty li from east to west and over two hundred li from south to north; its capital city is more than ten li in circuit.

To the south is the country of Hrum-Simingān. The country of Hrum-Simingān is over one thousand li in circuit and its capital city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit.

To the southwest is the country of Khulm. The country of Khulm is over eight hundred li in circuit and its capital city is five or six li in circuit. There are more than ten monasteries with over five hundred monks.

       To the west is the country of Baktra. The country of Baktra is more than eight hundred li from east to west and over four hundred li from south to north, bordered by the Oxus River on the north. Its capital city, which is more than twenty li in circuit, is popularly known as Smaller Rājagṛha. It is a strongly fortified city but sparsely populated. There are a great many varieties of native products and the terrestrial and aquatic flowers are too many to be enumerated. There are more than one hundred monasteries with over three thousand monks, all of whom study and practice the Hinayana teachings.

To the southwest outside the city is New Monastery, built by a previous king of this country. This is the only monastery north of the Great Snow Mountains in which various Buddhist commentators have worked continuously without intermission. The Buddha’s image is adorned with famous jewels and the halls are decorated with rare precious substances. For this reason the rulers of various countries attacked the monastery in order to capture the valuables. In the monastery there is a statue of the deity Vaiśravaṇa, who is reliable in his spiritual power and serves as a guardian of the monastery in a hidden sense. Recently the Turkish Shehu Khan’s son, named Si Shehu Khan, mobilizing all the forces of his tribe and commanding his army, launched a surprise attack on the monastery and attempted to seize the jewels. Not far away from the monastery he camped with his troops. During the night he dreamed of Vaiśravaṇa, who said to him, “What power do you have that you dare to devastate the monastery?” So saying, he thrust his spear through the Khan’s chest. Waking in terror, the Khan felt an acute heartache and told his subordinates about his evil dream. Then he hurriedly sent messengers to invite the monks so that he might confess his wickedness in their presence, but he died before the messengers returned.

In the southern buddha hall of this monastery there is a Buddha’s bathing pot of about one dou (1 decaliter) in capacity. It is of a variegated color and dazzlingly brilliant, and it is difficult to say whether it is made of metal or of stone. There is also a Buddha’s tooth relic about one inch long and eight or nine fen (1 fen = 1/10 of an inch) wide. It is yellowish-white in color and bright and clean in texture. There is also a Buddha’s broom, made of kāśa grass, about two feet long and seven inches around, the handle adorned various precious substances. These three articles are always shown on the six fast days to the assembly of monks and laypeople, who make offerings to them. When moved by the sincerity of the devotees these articles may emit a brilliant light. To the north of the monastery there is a stupa over two hundred feet in height, plastered with diamonds and decorated with various precious substances. A piece of relic bone is enshrined in the stupa, which often issues a divine light.

To the southwest of the monastery there is a vihāra (temple) that was built many years ago. Numerous learned monks congregated at this monastery from distant places, and it is difficult to number those who were arhats (saints). Therefore only those arhats who had manifested supernatural powers at the time of entering nirvana and had become well known to the monks had stupas built for them. These were a hundred in number, with their bases very close together. Although those monks who had attained sainthood were also numbered by the thousand no memorials were erected for them, as they did not show supernatural powers at death. Now there are over a hundred monks, who work hard day and night for spiritual cultivation, but it is difficult to 873a know who is an ordinary monk and who is a saint.

Over fifty li to the northwest of the capital is the city of Trapuṣa, and over forty li to the north of this city is the city of Bhallika. In each of the two cities there is a stupa more than thirty feet in height.

When the Tathāgata first realized Buddhahood, he rose from his seat under the bodhi tree. When he was about to go to the Deer Park, the two elders [Trapuṣa and Bhallika] met him in his majestic glory and offered him some parched grain and honey out of their traveling provisions. The World-honored One spoke to them on the blessedness acquired by human and heavenly beings, and they were the first to hear the five precepts and the ten good deeds. After having heard the instructions on the Dharma they requested something for them to worship. Then the Tathāgata gave them some of his hair and nail parings to take back home. As they asked about the manner of venerating these relics, the Tathāgata folded his saṃghāti (double robe; incorrectly transcribed as sengqili in olden times) into a square and spread it on the ground, and he did the same with his uttarāsaṅga (upper robe) and saṃkakṣikā (side-covering vest; incorrectly transcribed as sengqizhi in olden times). Then he placed his inverted alms bowl on the robes and set his pewter staff on top of the bowl to make the shape of a stupa. The two men returned to their respective cities and each built a stupa after the pattern shown by the holy Buddha. This was the prototype of the stupas built by the Buddhists according to the teachings of the Buddha.

More than seventy li to the west of the city is a stupa over twenty feet in

height, which had been built long ago at the time of Kāśyapa Buddha.

Proceeding southwest from the capital city, one enters a nook of the Snow Mountains and reaches the country of Zumathān. The country of Zumathān is fifty or sixty li from east to west and over one hundred li from south to north, its capital city being more than ten li in circuit.

Proceeding southwest one reaches the country of Gūzgānān. The country of Gūzgānān is more than five hundred li from east to west and over one thousand li from south to north, its capital city being more than twenty li in circuit. This country has many mountains and rivers and produces good horses.

Proceeding northwest one reaches the country of Talaqān. The country of Talaqān is over five hundred li from east to west and fifty or sixty li from south to north, its capital city being more than ten li in circuit. It borders on the country of Persia in the west.

Going south from the country of Baktra for more than one hundred li, I arrived at the country of Kacik. The country of Kacik is more than five hundred li from east to west and over three hundred li from south to north, its capital city being four or five li in circuit. The soil is hard and infertile, with hills and mounds connecting to one another. There are few flowers or fruit but much pulse and wheat. The climate is severely cold and the people are harsh and fierce by custom. There are more than ten monasteries with over three hundred monks, all of whom study the Sarvāstivāda school of the Hinayana teachings.

Proceeding southeast one enters the Great Snow Mountains. The mountains are high and the valleys deep, and the peaks and cliffs are fraught with danger.

Wind and snowfall follow each other and even at the height of summer it is cold to the point of freezing. Snow heaps up in the valleys and the footpath is hard to walk on. Mountain deities and evil ghosts, when enraged, send forth monstrous sprites to create havoc. It is also infested with gangs of brigands, whose business is murder.

Going for more than six hundred li, I came out of the territory of Tukhāra country and reached the country of Bāmīyāna. The country of Bāmīyāna is more than two thousand li from east to west and over three hundred li from south to north, being situated among the Snow Mountains. The people lived on the slopes of the valleys and gradually became town-dwellers. The capital city lies upon a cliff and stretches across a valley six or seven li in length, with a lofty precipice at its back on the north. It produces winter wheat but few flowers and fruit. It is fit for cattle breeding and there are many sheep and horses. The climate is severely cold and the customs are harsh and rude. The people mostly wear fur and hempen clothes, which are suitable for them. The written language, social institutions, and currency are the same as those in Tukhāra. The spoken language is slightly different but the manners and features of the people are generally the same. Their mind of pure faith is far better than that of the people in neighboring countries. They worship the Triple Gem with utmost sincerity and venerate all gods down to the various deities. When merchants coming and going happen to witness visions of heavenly deities, whether as good omens or as predictions of disaster, they worship the deities to pray for blessedness. There are several tens of monasteries with several thousand monks, who follow the Hinayana teachings of the Lokottara vāda school.

To the northeast of the royal city,  at a corner of the mountains, there is a rock statue of the standing Buddha, one hundred forty or fifty feet in height, of a dazzling golden color and adorned with brilliant gems. To the east there is a monastery built by a previous king of the country. To the east of the monastery there is a copper statue of the standing Buddha, more than one hundred feet tall. It was cast in separate pieces and then welded together into shape.

In the monastery situated two or three li to the east of the city there is an image of the recumbent Buddha, more than one thousand feet long, in the posture of entering nirvana. At this place the king often convened the quinquennial assembly, in which he offered everything from his queen down to the national treasures as alms to the monks. When the state repository was exhausted he gave himself up to the monks, and then his officials paid ransom to the monks to redeem the king. This practice has become the king’s regular duty.

Going from the monastery of the image of the recumbent Buddha toward the southeast for over two hundred li, I crossed the Great Snow Mountains and reached the Small Marshland in the east, where the water of the springs and ponds is as clear and lucid as a mirror, with luxuriant trees of green foliage. There is a monastery in which are preserved a tooth relic of the Buddha and a tooth of a pratyekabuddha who lived at the beginning of the present kalpa (eon), more than five inches long and less than four inches wide. There is also a tooth of a gold wheel king, three inches long and two inches wide, as well as the iron alms bowl used by the great arhat Śāṇakavāsa (incorrectly transcribed as Shangna-hexiu in olden times), with a capacity of eight or nine sheng (liter). These three kinds of relics left by the holy ones are sealed up in golden containers.

There is also preserved a piece of Śāṇakavāsa’s saṃghāti robe, consisting of nine stripes of a dark red color. It was made of the cloth woven with the fiber of the śāṇaka (hemp) plant. Śāṇakavāsa was a disciple of Ānanda. In

a former life he presented a piece of hempen robe to the monks on the last day of the summer retreat. Through this meritorious deed he was born five hundred times always wearing a hempen garment, whether he was in the state of intermediate existence or born into the human world. In his last birth he was born wrapped in a hempen garment, which enlarged with the growth of his body. When he was converted  to the Buddhist order by Ānanda his garment turned into a religious robe, and when he received full ordination it became a saṃghāti robe of nine stripes. When he was about to realize nirvana he entered the ultimate samādhi of perfection; through the power of his vow of wisdom he left his robe to last in the world until the end of the bequeathed teachings of the Buddha. It will decay only after the termination of the Dharma. It is now slightly diminished, and this is evidence for the veracity of the legend.

Going from here to the east and after crossing the Black Range, I reached the country of Kāpiśī. The country of Kāpiśī is more than four thousand li in circuit, with the Snow Mountains at its back in the north and the Black Range surrounding the three other sides. It is fit for growing rice and wheat and there are plenty of fruit trees. It produces good horses and aromatic turmeric. Rare commodities from different places are mostly concentrated in this country. The climate is windy and cold and the people are rude and rustic by nature. Their language is vulgar and indecent and they practice mixed marriage. The written language is generally the same as in the country of Tukhāra but the customs and spoken language and social institutions are quite different. They wear woolen and cotton clothes and also use fur and hemp in making garments. For currency they use golden and silver coins and small coppers, whose sizes and shapes differ from those of other countries. The king, who belongs to the Suli tribe, is a man of strategy, brave and fiery by nature and feared by neighboring regions; he has more than ten countries under his dominion. He loves and nurtures his subjects and venerates the Triple Gem. Every year he makes a silver image of the Buddha, eighteen feet in height. He also holds a quinquennial assembly for the distribution of charity to the poor and needy, and he gives alms to widows and widowers. There are over one hundred monasteries with more than six thousand monks, most of whom study the teachings of the Mahayana school. The stupas and monasteries are tall and spacious and are kept clean in a solemn manner. There are over ten deva temples with more than one thousand heretical believers, who either go about naked or with dust smeared on their bodies; some wear strings of skulls as head ornaments.

Three or four li to the east of the great city there is a large monastery at the foot of the northern mountain with over three hundred monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Hinayana schools. I heard some old people say that when King Kaniṣka of the country of Gandhāra was on the throne, his prestige extended to the neighboring countries and his influence reached distant regions. He strengthened his military forces and expanded his territory to the east of the Pamir Range. Out of fear of the king’s might, the lord of a Chinese vassal state west of the Yellow River sent his son as hostage to the king. Upon receiving the hostage prince King Kaniṣka treated him with special kindness and courtesy, providing him with different lodgings according to the seasons. In the winter he stayed in various states in India and in the summer he returned to the country of Kāpiśī, while in the spring and autumn he stayed in the country of Gandhāra. Therefore a monastery was built at each of these places where the hostage prince lived in the three different sea- 874a sons. This monastery was the one built at his summer residence. Painted on the walls of the buildings are pictures of the hostage prince, his features and costume being quite the same as those of the Chinese people. Afterward he was sent back to his own country, but in memory of his old residences he continued to send offerings to the monasteries without interruption in spite of the obstacles of mountains and rivers. Now the monks of the monastery still perform grand religious functions at the times of commencing and dissolving the summer retreat to pray for blessedness and perform meritorious deeds on behalf of the hostage prince, without cease up to the present time.

Under the right foot of the statue of the great deity at the southern side of the east gate of the buddha hall courtyard of the monastery, there was an underground treasure laid up by the hostage prince with an inscription that reads, “When the monastery is in need of repair, take this treasure for its renovation.” Recently the king of a frontier country, an avaricious and cruel man, heard that there were plenty of jewels and gems stored in the monastery. After he had expelled the monks and was about to dig up the treasure, the figure of a parrot on the crown of the great deity vigorously flapped its wings and screamed in a terrible manner, causing an earthquake. The king and his soldiers were so frightened that they fainted and fell on the ground and it was a long time before they came to, after which they apologetically returned home.

On the mountain to the north of the monastery there are several caves in which the hostage prince practiced meditation. A large quantity of miscellaneous valuables was stored in the caves, with an inscription placed beside them and guarded by a yakṣa (demon). Whenever anyone wished to open the caves to take away the treasure the yakṣa, through his supernatural power,  would appear in different forms: as a python, a fierce animal, or a poisonous insect, all greatly enraged. Therefore no one dared to attempt to take the valuables by force.

On a great mountain two or three li to the west of the caves there is a statue of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. When anybody earnestly wishes to see the bodhisattva he appears out of the statue in a graceful form to comfort the devotee.

Over thirty li to the southeast of the great city is Rāhula Monastery. Beside it there is a stupa more than one hundred feet in height that sometimes emits a brilliant light on fast days. From a crevice on the body of the stupa in the shape of an inverted alms bowl black aromatic oil oozes out, and on a quiet night one sometimes hears the sound of music. I heard some old people say that it was built by Rāhula, a minister of this country. When the construction was completed he dreamed that someone said to him, “In the stupa you have constructed there is no śarīra (relic bone) enshrined. Tomorrow morning someone will offer one to the king. You may as well ask the king for it.” The next morning the minister went to court and said to the king, “May I have the impudence to beg a favor from Your Majesty?” The king said, “What is your desire?” The minister asked, “Will Your Majesty grant me what is first offered to you today?” The king said, “Let it be so!”

Rāhula then waited at the gate of the palace to see who was coming first, and in a moment a man came with a bottle containing a grain of śarīra. The minister inquired of the man, “What are you going to offer to the king?” The man said, “A buddha śarīra (relic).” The minister said, “I shall watch the śarīra 874b for you while you go in to report first to the king.” Rāhula, fearing that the king might be reluctant to part with the precious śarīra and might go back on his promise, quickly went to the monastery and climbed up on the stupa with such a pious mind that the stupa in the shape of an inverted alms bowl, moved by his earnestness, opened by itself so that he could deposit the śarīra inside. He then hurriedly came out and the gusset of his robe was caught by the closing crevice. The king’s messenger chased after the relic but the stone stupa had already closed. Thus black aromatic oil oozed out from the crevice.

More than forty li to the south of the city is the City of Śvetavat Temple. Whenever there is a big earthquake and the mountains and precipices collapse, nothing is shaken within the limits of this city.

More than thirty li to the south of the City of Śvetavat Temple is Aruṇa Mountain, with its lofty peaks and cliffs and gloomy valleys stretching far. The top of the mountain increases every year by several hundred feet in height, as if to look at Śunāśīra Mountain in the country of Jāguḍa, and then it suddenly collapses. I heard the local people say that when the deity Śunā first came here from a distant place, he wished to stay at this mountain. Terrified, the mountain god shook the rivulets in the valleys. The deity said, “You do not wish me to take up lodging with you, and so you shook the earth. If you had shown me a little hospitality I would have filled your chest with riches and valuables. Now I am going to Śunāśīra Mountain in the country of Jāguḍa. Every year at the time when I receive worship and offerings from the king and his ministers, you may only look at me!” Thus Aruṇa Mountain increases to a height and then immediately collapses.

More than two hundred li to the northwest of the royal city are the Great Snow Mountains, at the top of which there is a lake. Whenever people come here to pray for rain or fine weather their wishes are always fulfilled. I heard some old people say that formerly there was an arhat in Gandhāra, who always received offerings of alms from the nāga king of this lake. Every day at the time of the midday meal he would sit on his folding chair and fly through the air to the lake through supernatural power. Once his attendant novice hid himself below the folding chair and the arhat went to the lake as usual when the time arrived for him to make the journey. On arriving at the nāga’s palace he discovered the novice, and so the nāga king also invited the novice to the meal. The nāga king offered heavenly delicious rice to entertain the arhat, while he gave the novice food of the human world. When the meal was over the arhat preached the Dharma for the nāga king, and the novice washed his master’s alms bowl, as usual. When he discovered some remaining grains of rice in the bowl he was amazed by its fragrance and he immediately cherished a malignant feeling against his master and the nāga king, saying, “May the power of whatever good deeds I have performed appear to kill this nāga and let me be the king.” The moment the novice

 expressed this desire the nāga king felt a headache. After listening to the sermons delivered by the arhat, the nāga king repented his misdeed and blamed himself, but the novice, deeply resentful, would not make a confession nor accept the nāga king’s apology. Having returned to the monastery, the novice, by his earnest desire and the power of his good deeds, died that night and was reborn as a great nāga king with majesty and valor. He came to the lake, killed the resident nāga king, occupied the nāga palace, took possession of his subordinates, and became the master of all. Out of his old indignation he caused a violent storm that uprooted the trees, intending to destroy the monastery.

At that time King Kaniṣka, perplexed by the accident, made inquiries into the matter and the arhat told him everything. The king then built a monastery at the foot of the Snow Mountains with a stupa over one hundred feet high for the nāga. Out of his old resentment the nāga sent forth wind and rain. The king cherished the mind of universal salvation but the nāga, out of his malignance and hatred, caused storms six times to destroy the monastery and stupa, but they were rebuilt seven times. King Kaniṣka, ashamed of his failure, intended to fill up the nāga’s lake and demolish his dwellings. He mobilized his troops and came to the foot of the Snow Mountains. Deeply terrified, the nāga king transformed himself into the form of an old brahman, halted the king’s elephant, and offered a remonstrance to him, saying, “Because, Great King, you have in the past performed good deeds and sowed many superior causes, you are now a king of humans and no one dares to disobey you. Why do you contend with a nāga today? A nāga is an animal, and though of a base and evil species he still possesses great power and cannot be subjugated by strength. He can ride on a piece of cloud and fly through the air, or tread upon empty space and walk over water, beyond the control of human power. What influence can your anger produce upon him? Now you have mobilized all of the military forces in the whole country to fight with a nāga. Even if you win in the battle you will not gain the prestige that you achieve when you conquer a distant land; if you lose the war you will bring shame on yourself for being unable to defeat your enemy. It is in your own interest to withdraw your troops.”

King Kaniṣka did not listen to this remonstrance so the nāga returned to his lake and caused a thunderstorm and a hurricane that uprooted the trees. Sand and stones rained down from the air, clouds and mist darkened the world, and the king’s troops and horses were frightened. The king then took refuge in the Triple Gem, begging for protection, saying, “Because I have done many good deeds in the past I am now a king of human beings with mighty power to subdue strong enemies and rule over Jambudvīpa. Now I am humiliated by this nāga animal, which shows that my blessedness is scanty. May whatever power I have gathered from doing good deeds be present at this very moment!” Immediately a huge flame arose from his shoulders, the nāga retreated, the wind died down, and the mist and clouds dispersed. The king ordered each soldier in his army to carry a piece of stone to fill up the nāga lake. The nāga king resumed the form of a brahman and said again to the king, “I am the nāga king of this lake and, out of fear of your great power, I have come to pledge allegiance to you. May the king take pity on me and forgive me for the faults I have committed. You are a king who nourishes and protects all living beings, so why should you do harm to me alone? If you kill me, we will both fall into the evil ways of exis- 875a tence, because you will have committed the sin of taking life, while I will have cherished a feeling of hatred and vengeance in my mind. Karmic retribution is apparent and shows plainly what is good and what is evil.”

The king then reached an agreement with the nāga that should the nāga commit another offense in the future, the king would certainly not pardon him. The nāga said, “Because of my evil karma done in the past I am now a nāga. As a nāga is violent by nature, I am unable to restrain myself and in a fit of anger I may forget about the obligation. If you build another monastery I will dare not destroy it again. Please always send a guard to watch the peak of the mountain. If a black cloud arises he should at once strike an instrument. When I hear the sound I shall quench my evil mind.” The king then constructed another monastery together with a stupa, and a guard was stationed to watch to see if any black cloud appeared. This is still done without interruption. I heard some old people say that inside the stupa there was preserved about one sheng of bone and flesh relics of the Tathāgata.

Marvelous events are difficult to relate in detail. Once smoke suddenly arose from inside the stupa, and in a moment raging flames burst out of it. The people thought that the stupa must have been consumed by the fire, but after looking at it for a long time, when the smoke and flames had vanished, they saw the relics resembling a streamer of white pearls, winding upwards around an ornamental pillar, up to the clouds and whirling down again.

In Old Royal Monastery on the southern bank of the great river in the northwest of the royal city is a deciduous tooth of Śākyamuni Bodhisattva about one inch long. To the southeast of this monastery there is another one, also called Old Royal Monastery, in which is preserved a piece of the Tathāgata’s skull bone about one inch broad, yellowish white in color, with distinctive hair pores. There is also a hair of the Tathāgata’s head, dark purple in color, curled up rightward about half an inch long, but when extended it measures about one foot. These three objects are worshiped with scattering of flowers by the king and his ministers on the six fast days of every month.

To the southwest of this skull bone monastery is Old Queen’s Monastery, in which there is a gilt copper stupa more than one hundred feet in height. I heard some local people say that it contained over one sheng of the Buddha’s relic bones, from which on the night of the fifteenth day of every month emits a round light shining continuously upon the dew basin of the stupa which gradually fades into it at dawn.

To the southwest of the city is Pilusāra (“Strong Elephant”) Mountain. It is called Strong Elephant because the tutelary deity of the mountain assumed the form of an elephant. Formerly, when the Tathāgata was living in the world, the deity of Strong Elephant Mountain once invited the World-honored One and his twelve hundred great arhats to the mountain. There was a large flat rock on the top of the mountain, where the Tathāgata took his seat and accepted the alms offered by the deity. Afterward King Aśoka erected a stupa more than one hundred feet high on the rock. This is what the people now call Strong Elephant Stupa, and it is also said that about one sheng of the Tathāgata’s relic bones is preserved in it.

               Below the cliff to the north of Strong Elephant Stupa is a nāga spring,             875b

where the Tathāgata and arhats washed their mouths by chewing willow twigs after taking the meal offered by the deity. They planted the twigs in the ground, where they took root and grew into the dense wood that it is now. Afterward, people built at this place a monastery called Piṇḍaka (“Chewing Willow Twigs”) Monastery.

From here I traveled east for more than six hundred li through mountains and valleys connected with each other. The peaks and cliffs are steep and precipitous. After crossing the Black Range I entered the territory of North India and reached the country of Lampā (in the domain of North India).

End of Fascicle I of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

 

Fascicle II

Three Countries, fromLampā to Gandhāra

  1. The Country of Lampā
  2. The Country of Nagarahāra
  3. The Country of Gandhāra

In a careful study we find that Tianzhu is valiantly designated, causing much confusion and perplexity. Formerly it was called Shengdu, or Xiandou, but now we should call it Indu (India) according to the right pronunciation. The people of India use different names for their respective countries, while people of distant places with diverse customs generally designate the land that they admire as India. The word indu means “moon,” which has many names, and this is one of them. It means that living beings live and die in the wheel of transmigration in the long night of ignorance ceaselessly, without a rooster to announce the advent of the dawn. When the sun has sunk candles continue to give light in the night. Although the stars are shining in the sky, how can they be as brilliant as the clear moon? For this reason India was compared to the moon. Because saints and sages emerged one after another in that land to guide living beings and regulate all affairs, just as the moon shines upon all things, it was called India. In India the people are divided into different castes and clans, among whom the brahmans are the noblest. Following their good name, tradition has designated the whole land as the Brahmanical country, disregarding the regular lines of demarcation.

As regards the territory, we may say that the whole of India, with its five parts, is over ninety thousand li in circuit, with three sides facing the sea and the Snow Mountains at its back in the north. It is wide in the north and narrow in the south, in the shape of a crescent moon. The land is divided into more than seventy countries. The climate is particularly hot and the soil is mostly moist, with many springs. In the north there are many mountains and the 875c hills are of saline-alkaline soil. In the east the plain is rich and moist, and the

cultivated fields are productive. In the south vegetation is luxuriant, while in the west the soil is hard and barren. Such is the general condition [of this vast country] told in brief.

For the measurement of space there is the yojana. (In olden times it was called youxun, yuzhena, or youyan, all incorrect.) One yojana is the distance covered by the ancient royal army in one day’s time. Formerly it was said to be forty li, or thirty li according to Indian usage, while in Buddhist texts it was counted as only sixteen li. To divide it down to the infinitesimal, one yojana is divided into eight krośas, one krośa being the distance within which the mooing of a bull can be heard, one krośa into five hundred bows, one bow into four cubits, one cubit into twenty-four fingers, and one finger joint into seven grains of winter wheat. Then the division goes on by sevens through the louse, the nit, the crevice dust, the ox hair, the sheep wool, the hare hair, the copper dust [particle], the water dust, down to the fine dust, and one fine dust [particle] is divided into seven extremely fine dust [particles]. The extremely fine dust is indivisible; if divided it becomes emptiness. This is why it is called extremely fine dust.

Although the names of the alternating [periods of] day and night and the emergence and disappearance of the sun and moon are different [from those used in China], there is no difference in the measurement of time and season. The months are named according to the position of the Big Dipper. The briefest unit of time is called a kṣaṇa; one hundred twenty kṣaṇas make one tatkṣaṇa; sixty tatkṣaṇas make one lava; thirty lavas make one muhūrta; five muhūrtas make one kāla; and six kālas make one day and one night (three kālas in the daytime and three in the night). Secular people divide one day and one night into eight kālas (four kālas in the daytime and four in the night, each being subdivided into four divisions). From the waxing moon to the full moon is known as the white division, and from the waning moon to the last day of the month is called the black division. The black division has fourteen or fifteen days, as the month may be “small” or “big.” The anterior black division and the posterior white division constitute one month and six months make one year. When the sun moves inside the celestial equator, it is the northern revolution, and when it moves outside the celestial equator, it is the southern revolution. These two revolutions constitute one year. The year is also divided into six seasons, namely, from the sixteenth day of the first month to the fifteenth day of the third month is the season of gradual heat; from the sixteenth day of the third month to the fifteenth day of the fifth month is the season of intense heat; from the sixteenth day of the fifth month to the fifteenth day of the seventh month is the rainy season; from the sixteenth day of the seventh month to the fifteenth day of the ninth month is the season of exuberance; from the sixteenth day of the ninth month to the fifteenth day of the eleventh month is the season of gradual cold; and from the sixteenth day of the eleventh month to the fifteenth day of the first month is the season of severe cold.

According to the holy teachings of the Tathāgata, a year is divided into three seasons, namely, from the sixteenth day of the first month to the fifteenth day of the fifth month is the hot season; from the sixteenth day of the fifth month to the fifteenth day of the ninth month is the rainy season; and from 876a the sixteenth day of the ninth month to the fifteenth day of the first month is the cold season. Or it is divided into four seasons, namely, spring, summer, autumn, and winter. The three months of spring are called Caitra, Vaiśākha, and Jyeṣṭha, corresponding to the period from the sixteenth day of the first month to the fifteenth day of the fourth month in China. The three months of summer are called Āṣāḍha, Śravaṇa, and Bhādrapada, corresponding to the period from the sixteenth day of the fourth month to the fifteenth day of the seventh month in China. The three months of autumn are known as Āśvayuja, Kārttika, and Mārgaśīrṣa, corresponding to the period from the sixteenth day of the seventh month to the fifteenth day of the tenth month in China. The three months of winter are named Pauṣa, Māgha, and Phālguna, corresponding to the period from the sixteenth day of the tenth month to the fifteenth day of the first month in China.

Thus, according to the holy teachings of the Buddha, the monks of India observe the summer retreat during the rainy season, either in the earlier three months or in the later three months. The earlier three months correspond to the period from the sixteenth day of the fifth month to the fifteenth day of the eighth month in China, and the later three months correspond to the period from the sixteenth day of the sixth month to the fifteenth day of the ninth month in China. Former translators of scriptures and Vinaya texts used the terms zuoxia or zuola (“to sit for the summer or the annual retreat”). This was because they were outlandish people who did not understand the Chinese language correctly or were not conversant with the dialects, and so they committed mistakes in their translations. Moreover, there are divergences in the calculation of the dates of the Buddha’s entry into his mother’s womb, birth, renunciation, enlightenment, and nirvana; this point will be discussed later.

As regards the towns and cities, they have square city walls, which are broad and tall. The streets and lanes are narrow and winding, with stores facing the roads and wine shops standing beside the streets. Butchers, fishermen, harlots, actors, executioners, and scavengers mark their houses with banners and are not allowed to live inside the cities. When they come to town they have to sneak up and down along the left side of the road. Concerning the building of residential houses and the construction of the city walls, they are mostly built with bricks, as the terrain is low and humid, while the walls of houses may be made of wattled bamboo or wood. The roofs of houses, terraces, and pavilions are made of planks, plastered with limestone and covered with bricks or adobe. Some of the lofty buildings are similar in style to those in China. Cottages thatched with cogon grass or ordinary straw are built with bricks or planks and the walls are adorned with limestone. The floor is purified by smearing it with cow dung and seasonal flowers are scattered over it. In this matter they differ [from Chinese custom].

The monasteries are constructed in an extremely splendid manner. They have four corner towers and the halls have three tiers. The rafters, eaves,

ridgepoles, and roof beams are carved with strange figures. The doors, windows, and walls are painted with colored pictures. The houses of the common people are ostentatious inside but plain and simple outside.

The inner chambers and main halls vary in their dimensions and the structures of the tiered terraces and multistoried pavilions have no fixed style, but the doors open to the east and the throne also faces east. For a seat on which to rest a rope bed (charpoy) is used. The royal family, great personages, officials, commoners, and magnates adorn their seats in different ways, but the structure is the same in style. The sovereign’s throne is exceedingly high and wide and decorated with pearls. Called the lion seat, it is covered with fine cotton cloth and is mounted by means of a jeweled footstool. The ordinary officials carve their seats in different decorative patterns according to their fancy and they ornament them with rare gems. Both the upper [clothes] and undergarments, as well as ornamental garb, need no tailoring. Pure white is the preferred color, while motley is held in no account. The men wind a piece of cloth around the waist under the armpits and leave the right shoulder uncovered. The women wear a cape that covers both shoulders and hangs down loose. The hair on the top is combed into a small topknot with the rest of the hair falling down. Some men clip their mustaches and have other strange fashions, such as wearing a garland on the head or a necklace on the body. For clothing they use kauśeya and cotton cloth, kauśeya being silk spun by wild silkworms. The kṣauma (linen) cloth is made of hemp or similar fibers. The kambala is woven with fine sheep wool, while the hela cape (a sort of raincoat?) is woven with the wool of a wild animal. As this wool is fine and soft and can be spun and woven, it is valued for making garments.

In North India, where the climate is bitterly cold, the people wear tightfitting short jackets, quite similar to those of the Hu people. The costumes of the heretics vary in style and are strangely made. They dress in peacock tails, or wear necklaces of skulls, or go naked, or cover their bodies with grass or boards, or pluck their hair and clip their mustaches, or have disheveled hair with a small topknot. Their upper [clothes] and undergarments have no fixed style and the color may be red or white; there is no definite rule.

The monks have only the three regular robes, [the saṃghāti,] the saṃkakṣikā, and the nivāsana robes as their religious garments. The different sects have different ways of making the three robes, of which the fringes may be broad or narrow and the folds may be small or large. The saṃkakṣikā (known in Chinese as “armpit cover” and formerly transcribed as sengqizhi incorrectly) covers the left shoulder and veils both armpits. It is open on the left and closed on the right side, reaching below the waist. Since the nivāsana (known in Chinese as “skirt” and formerly transcribed as niepanseng incorrectly) has no strings for fastening; it is worn by gathering it into pleats, which are tightened with a braid. The pleats are folded in different ways by different sects and the color also differs, either yellow or red. People of the kṣatriya (military and ruling class) and the brahman (priestly class) castes are pure and simple in lodging and clean and frugal. The dress and ornaments of the kings and ministers are very ostentatious. Garlands and coronets studded with gems are their headdresses, and rings, bracelets, and necklaces are their bodily ornaments. The wealthy merchants use only bracelets. Most people go barefoot; few wear shoes. They stain their teeth red or black, have closely 876c cropped hair, pierce their earlobes, and have long noses and large eyes. Such are their outward features.

They voluntarily keep themselves pure and clean, not by compulsion. Before taking a meal they must wash their hands. Remnants and leftovers are not to be served again and food vessels are not passed from one person to another. Earthenware and wooden utensils must be discarded after use, and golden, silver, copper, or iron vessels are polished each time after use. When the meal is over they chew willow twigs to cleanse [their mouths], and before washing and rinsing their mouths they do not come into contact with one another. Each time after going to defecate or urinate they must wash themselves and daub their bodies with a fragrant substance, such as sandalwood or turmeric. When the monarch is going to take a bath music made by beating drums and playing stringed instruments is performed, along with singing. Before offering sacrifices to gods and worshiping at temples they take baths and wash themselves.

It is known that their writing, composed of forty-seven letters, was invented by the deva Brahmā as an original standard for posterity. These letters are combined to indicate objects and used as expressions for events. The original [language] branched as it gradually became widely used, and there are slight modifications of it according to place and people. As a language in general, it did not deviate from the original source. The people of Central India are particularly accurate and correct in speech, and their expressions and tones are harmonious and elegant like the language of the devas. They speak accurately in a clear voice and serve as a standard for other people. The people of neighboring lands and foreign countries became accustomed to speaking in erroneous ways until their mistakes became accepted as correct, and they vied with one another in emulating vulgarities, not sticking to the pure and simple style.

As regards their records of sayings and events, there are separate departments in charge of them. The annals and royal edicts are collectively called Nīlapiṭa (Blue Collection), in which good and bad events are recorded, and calamities as well as auspicious signs are noted down in detail. To begin the education of their children and induce them to make progress, they first guide them to learn the Book of Twelve Chapters; and when the children reach the age of seven, the great treatises of the five knowledges are gradually imparted to them. The first is the knowledge of grammar, which explains the meanings of words and classifies them into different groups. The second is the knowledge of technical skills, which teaches arts and mechanics, the principles of yin and yang (negativity and positivity), and calendrical computation. The third is the knowledge of medicine, including the application of incantation, exorcism, drugs, stone needles, and moxibustion. The fourth is the knowledge of logic, by which orthodox and heterodox are ascertained and truth is differentiated from falsehood. The fifth is the inner knowledge, which thoroughly investigates the teachings of the five vehicles and the subtle theory of cause and effect.

The brahmans study the Four Vedas (formerly transcribed as Pituo incorrectly). The first treatise is on longevity, dealing with the preservation of good health and the readjustment of mentality. The second is on worship, that is, offering sacrifices and saying prayers. The third is on equity, concerning ceremonial rituals, divination, military tactics, and battle formation. The fourth is on practical arts, which teaches unusual abilities, crafts and numeration, incantation, and medical prescriptions.

    The teachers must be learned in the essence [of these treatises] and thoroughly master the profound mysteries. They expound the cardinal principles [to the pupils] and teach them with succinct but penetrating expressions. The teachers summon up their pupils’ energy to study and tactfully induce them to progress. They instruct the dull and encourage the less talented. Those disciples who are intelligent and acute by nature and have sensible views, intending to live in seclusion, confine themselves, and lock the door against the outside until they complete their studies. On reaching the age of thirty, they have fixed their minds and gained achievements in learning. After having been appointed to official posts, the first thing they do is to repay the kindness of their teachers.

There are some people who are conversant with ancient lore and fond of classic elegance, living in seclusion to preserve their uprightness. They drift along the course of life without worldly involvement and remain free and unfettered, above human affairs. They are indifferent to honor and humiliation and their renown spreads far. The rulers, even while treating such people with courtesy, cannot win them over to serve at court. But the state honors wise and learned people and the [common] people respect those who are noble and intelligent, according them high praise and treating them with perfect etiquette. Therefore people can devote their attention to learning without feeling fatigue and they travel about seeking knowledge and visiting masters of the Way in order to rely on the virtuous ones, not counting a thousand li as a long journey. Although their families may be rich, such people make up their minds to live wandering about the world, begging for their food wherever they go. They value the acquisition of truth and do not deem poverty a disgrace. Those people who lead a life of amusement and dissipation, eating delicious food and wearing expensive garments, neither have virtue nor study constantly; they incur shame and disgrace upon themselves and their ill repute spreads far and wide.

The Tathāgata’s teachings may be comprehended by each listener according to his own type of mentality, and as we are now far away from the time of the holy Buddha some of his right Dharma is still pure and some has become defiled. With the faculty of understanding all people can acquire the enlightenment of wisdom. There are different sects, like peaks, standing against each other and debating various viewpoints, as vehemently as crashing waves. They study divergent specific subjects but they all lead to the same goal. Each of the eighteen sects is expert in argumentation, using sharp and incisive words. The manner of living of the Mahayana (Great Vehicle) followers and that of the Hinayana (Small Vehicle) followers differ from each other. They engage themselves in silent meditation, or in walking to and from, or in standing still. Samādhi (intense mental concentration) and prajñā (wisdom) are far apart and noisiness and calmness are quite different. Each community of monks has laid down its own restrictive rules and regulations. All texts, whether belonging to the Vinaya (disciplinary rules), the Abhidharma (treatises), or the Sutras (discourses), are scriptures of the Buddha. A monk who can expound one text is exempted from routine monastic duties. One who can expound two texts is supplied with additional good rooms and daily requisites. One who can expound three texts is to be served by attendants. One who can expound four texts is provided with lay servants at his service. One who can expound five texts is entitled to ride an elephant when going out. One who can expound six texts has a retinue protecting him.

The honor given to those who have high morality is also extraordinary. Assemblies for discussion are often held to test the intellectual capacity of the monks, in order to distinguish superior from inferior, and to reject the dull and promote the bright. Those who can deliberate on the subtle sayings and glorify the wonderful theories with refined diction and quick eloquence may ride richly caparisoned elephants, with hosts of attendants preceding and following behind them. But those to whom the theories are taught in vain, or who have been defeated in a debate, explaining few principles in a verbose way or distorting the teachings with language that is merely pleasant to the ear, are daubed with ocher or chalk on the face while dust is scattered over the body, and they are exiled to the wilderness or discarded in ditches. In this way the good and the evil are distinguished and the wise and the ignorant disclosed. Thus people may take delight in the Way and study diligently at home. They may either forsake their homes or return to secular life, as they please. To those who commit faults or violate the disciplinary rules, the community of monks may mete out punishments. A light offense incurs public reprimand, and the penalty for the next gravest offense is that the monks do not speak to the offender. One who has committed a grave offense 877b is excommunicated; that is, he is expelled contemptuously by the community of monks. Once expelled the offender will have nowhere to take shelter and will suffer the hardships of a vagabond life, or he may return to his former life as a layperson.

As far as the different clans are concerned, there are four castes among the people. The first caste is that of the brahmans, who are pure in conduct, adhere to their doctrines, live in chastity, and preserve their virtue in purity. The second is the caste of kṣatriyas (formerly transcribed incorrectly as chali), who are royal descendants and rule the country, taking benevolence and humanity as their objects in life. The third is the caste of vaiśyas (formerly transcribed incorrectly as pishe), who are merchants and traders, exchanging goods to meet the needs of one another and gaining profit far and near. The fourth caste is the śūdras, farmers who labor in the fields and toil at sowing and reaping. These four castes are differentiated by their hereditary purity or defilement. People of a given caste marry within the caste and the conspicuous and the humble do not marry each other. Relatives, either on the father’s or the mother’s side, do not intermarry. A woman can marry only once and can never remarry. There are numerous miscellaneous clans grouped together according to their [professional] categories, and it is difficult to give a detailed account.

The monarchs and kings of successive generations have always been kṣatriyas. When usurpation and regicide occasionally happened, other families assumed supreme power. The warriors of the nation are well-chosen men of extraordinary bravery and, as the occupation is hereditary, they become experienced in the art of war. In peacetime they guard the palace buildings and in times of war they courageously forge ahead as the vanguard. The army is composed of four types of troops, namely, infantry, cavalry, charioteers, and elephant-mounted soldiers. The war elephant is covered with strong armor and its tusks are armed with sharp barbs. The general who controls the armed forces rides on it, with two soldiers walking on each side to manage the animal. The chariot carrying the commander-in-chief is drawn by four horses and arrays of soldiers march beside the wheels to protect him. The cavalrymen spread open to draw up a defensive formation or gallop ahead to pursue the defeated enemy. The infantry, daring men chosen for their boldness, go lightly into battle, carrying large shields and long spears, sabers, or swords and dashing to the front of the battle array. All their weapons are sharp and keen and they have been trained in such weaponry as the spear, shield, bow and arrow, saber, sword, battle axe, hatchet, dagger axe, long pole, long spear, discus, rope, and the like, with which they practice generation after generation.

Although the people are violent and impetuous by temperament they are plain and honest in nature. They never accept any wealth without considering the propriety of the action but give others more than what is required by righteousness. They fear retribution for sins in future lives and make light of the benefits they enjoy in the present. They do not engage in treachery and are creditable in keeping their promises.

Government administration emphasizes simplicity and honesty and the people are amicable by social custom. There are occasionally criminals and scoundrels who violate the national law or scheme to endanger the sovereign. When the facts are discovered these criminals are often cast into jail, where they are left to live or die; they are not sentenced to death but are no longer regarded as members of human society. The punishment for those who infringe the ethical code or behave against the principles of loyalty and filial piety is to cut off the nose, excise an ear, mutilate a hand, or amputate a foot, or  the offender may be banished to another country or into the wilderness. Other offenses can be expiated by a cash payment.

When a judge hears a case no torture is inflicted upon the accused to extort a confession. The accused answers whatever questions are put to him and then a sentence is fairly passed, according to the facts. There are some who refuse to admit their unlawful activities, ashamed of their faults, or who try to cover up their mistakes. In order to ascertain the actual facts of a case 877c ordeals are required to justify a final judgment. There are four ways, namely, ordeals by water, fire, weighing, and poison. In the ordeal by water the accused person is put into a sack and a stone is put into another sack; the two sacks are connected together and thrown into a deep river to discriminate the real criminal from the suspect. If the person sinks and the stone floats his guilt is proven, but if the person floats and the stone sinks he is then judged as having concealed nothing. In the ordeal by fire the accused is forced to crouch on a piece of hot iron and required to stamp on it with his feet, to touch it with his hands, and to lick it with his tongue. If the charge against him is false he will not be harmed, but if he is burned he is judged to be the real culprit. If a weak and feeble person cannot stand the heat of the scorching iron, he is asked to scatter some flower buds over the hot iron. If he is falsely charged the buds open into flowers, but if he is truly a criminal the buds are burned. In the ordeal by weighing the accused is weighed on a balance against a stone to determine which is heavier. If the charge is false the person goes down, while the stone goes up; if the charge is true the stone is weightier than the person. In the ordeal by poison the right hind leg of a black ram is cut and poison is put into it as a portion for the accused to eat. If the charge is true the person dies from the poison, but if the charge is false the poison is counteracted and the accused may survive. These four ordeals are the methods for the prevention of a hundred misdeeds.

There are nine grades in the manner of paying homage. They are (1) inquiring after one’s health, (2) bowing down three times to show respect, (3) bowing with hands raised high, (4) bowing with hands folded before the chest, (5) kneeling on one knee, (6) kneeling on both knees, (7) crouching with hands and knees on the ground, (8) bowing down with hands, elbows, and head to the ground, and (9) prostrating oneself with hands, elbows, and head touching the ground. In all these nine grades the utmost veneration is expressed by doing only one obeisance. To kneel down and praise the other’s virtue is the perfect form of veneration. If one is at a distance [from the venerated person], one just prostrates with folded hands. If a venerated person is nearby, one kisses their feet and rubs their heels. When one is delivering messages or receiving orders, he must hold up his robe and kneel. The honored person who receives veneration must say some kind words in return, or stroke the head or pat the back of the worshiper, giving him good words of admonition to show his affection and kindness. When a homeless monk receives salutation he expresses only his good wishes in return and never stops the worshiper from paying homage to him. One often pays reverence to a great respected master by circumambulating him once, thrice, or as many times as one wishes if one has a special request in mind.

When a person is sick he refrains from eating food for seven days, and during this period he may often recover his health. If he is not cured then he takes medicine. Medicines are of various properties and have different names, and physicians differ in medical technique and methods of diagnosis.

At a funeral ceremony the relatives of the departed one wail and weep, rend their clothes and tear their hair, strike their foreheads, and beat their chests. They do not wear mourning clothes and have no fixed period of mourning. There are three kinds of burial service. The first is cremation, in which a pyre is built and the body is burned. The second is water burial, in which the corpse is put into a stream to be carried away. The third is wilderness burial, in which the body is discarded in a forest to feed wild animals.

After the demise of a king, the first function is to enthrone the crown prince so that he may preside over the funeral ceremony and fix the positions of superiority and inferiority. Meritorious titles are conferred on a king while

he is living and no posthumous appellations are given after his death. No one goes to take a meal at a house where the people are suffering the pain of bereavement, but when the funeral service is over things go back to normal and there are no taboos. Those who have taken part in a funeral procession are considered unclean and they must all bathe themselves outside the city before reentering the city walls.

As regards those who are getting very old, approaching the time of death, suffering from incurable disease, or fearing that life is drawing to an end, they become disgusted with this world, desire to cast off human life, despise mortal existence, and wish to get rid of the ways of the world. Their relatives and friends then play music to hold a farewell party, put them in a boat, and row them to the middle of the Ganges River so that they may drown themselves in the river. It is said that they will thus be reborn in the heavens. Out of ten people only one cherishes such ideas, and so far I have not seen this with my own eyes.

According to monastic regulations, homeless monks should not lament over the deaths of their parents but should recite and chant scriptures in memory of their kindness, so as to be in keeping with the funeral rites and impart happiness to the departed souls.

As the government is liberal official duties are few. There is no census registration and no corvée labor is imposed upon the people. Royal lands are roughly divided into four divisions. The first division is used by the state to defray the expense of offering sacrifices to gods and ancestors, the second division is used for bestowing fiefs to the king’s assistants and ministers, the third division is for giving rewards to prominent and intelligent scholars of high talent, and the fourth division is for making meritorious donations to various heterodox establishments. Therefore taxation is light and forced labor rarely levied. Everyone keeps to his hereditary occupation and all people cultivate the portions of land allotted to them per capita. Those who till the king’s fields pay one-sixth of their crops as rent. Also, in order to gain profits merchants and traders travel about exchanging commodities and they pay light duties at ferries and barriers to pass through. For public construction no forced labor is enlisted; laborers are paid according to the work they have done. Soldiers are dispatched to garrison outposts and palace guards are conscripted according to circumstances, and rewards are announced in order to obtain applicants. Magistrates and ministers, as well as common government officials and assistants, all have their portions of land so that they may sustain themselves by the fief they have been granted.

As the climate and soil vary in different places, the natural products also differ in various districts. There are diverse descriptions of flowers, herbs, fruit, and trees with different names, such as āmra (mango), āmla (tamarind), ma dhūka (licorice), badara (jujube), kapittha (wood apple), āmalaka (myrobalan), tinduka (Diospyros), uḍumbara (Ficus glomerata), moca (plantain), nārikera (coconut), and panasa (jackfruit). It is difficult to give a full list of such fruit [trees], and here I just mention a few of them that are valued by the people. Dates, chestnuts, and green and red persimmons are unknown in India. Pears, crabapples, peaches, apricots, and grapes are often alternately grown in Kaśmīra and elsewhere, while pomegranates and sweet oranges are planted in all countries.

In the cultivation of fields, such farm work as sowing and reaping, ploughing and weeding, and seeding and planting are done according to the seasons, either laboriously or with ease. Among the native products, rice and wheat are particularly abundant. As for vegetables, there are ginger, mustard, melon, calabash, and kanda (beet). Onion and garlic are scarce and few people eat them. Those who eat them are driven out of the city.

Milk, ghee, oil, butter, granulated sugar, rock candy, mustard-seed oil,

and various kinds of cakes and parched grains are used as common food, and fish, mutton, and venison are occasionally served as delicacies. The meat of such animals as oxen, donkeys, elephants, horses, pigs, dogs, foxes, wolves, lions, monkeys, and apes is not to be eaten, as a rule. Those who eat the meat of such animals are despised and detested by the general public and the offenders are expelled to the outskirts of the city; they rarely show themselves among the people.

As regards different spirits and sweet wines of diverse tastes, drinks made from grapes and sugarcane are for the kṣatriyas and fermented spirits and unfiltered wines are for the vaiśyas to drink. The śramaṇas and brahmans drink grape and sugarcane juice, as they refrain from taking alcoholic beverages. For the low and mixed castes there are no specific drinks.

As to household implements, there are different articles made of various materials for various purposes. Miscellaneous necessities are always sufficiently at hand. Although cauldrons and big pots are used for cooking the rice steamer is unknown. Cooking utensils are mostly made of earthenware, with a few made of brass. When taking a meal a person eats from one vessel in which all the ingredients are mixed together. He takes the food with his fingers, never using spoons or chopsticks; the aged and the sick use copper spoons for eating food.

Gold, silver, brass, white jade, and crystal are local products, which are amassed in large quantities. Precious substances and rare treasures of different descriptions, procured from overseas, are commodities for trading. For the exchange of goods, gold and silver coins, cowries, and small pearls are used as the media of exchange.

The territories and boundaries of India have been described above and different local conditions have been briefly related here. I have made only a rough statement of what is common in all the regions of the country in a generalized manner. As regards the particular political administrations and social customs of different regions, I shall explain them separately under the heading of each country, as follows.

The country of Lampā is over one thousand li in circuit, with the Snow Mountains at its back in the north and the Black Range on the other three sides. The capital city is more than ten li in circuit. Several hundred years ago the royal family of this country ceased to exist and since then powerful families have competed with each other for superiority in the absence of a great monarch. It has recently become a dependency of Kāpiśī. The country produces non glutinous rice and much sugarcane. There are many trees but little fruit. The climate is temperate; there is little frost and no snow. The country is a rich and happy land and the people are fond of singing and chanting, but they are timid and deceitful by nature. They cheat and do not respect one another. They are ugly and short in stature and are frivolous and impetuous in behavior. They mostly wear white cotton and are nicely dressed. There are more than ten monasteries with a few monks, most of whom are students of the Mahayana teachings. There are several tens of deva temples with many heretics. From here going southeast for over one hundred li, I crossed a high mountain and a large river and then arrived in the country of Nagarahāra (in North India). This country is over six hundred li from east to west and two hundred fifty or sixty li from south to north. It is surrounded by steep and dangerous precipices on all sides. The capital city is more than twenty li in circuit. There is no sovereign king to rule over the country and it belongs to Kāpiśī as a vassal state. Grain and fruit are produced in abundance and the climate is 878c moderately warm. The people are simple and honest, as well as courageous and valiant. They do not value wealth but esteem learning and they venerate the buddha-dharma, though a few have faith in heretical religions. There are many monasteries but few monks. All the stupas are deserted and in dilapidated condition. There are five deva temples with over a hundred heretics.

Two li to the east of the capital city there is a stupa built by King Aśoka that is over three hundred feet high with piled-up stones, on which there are marvelous sculptures. This was the place where [in a former life] Śākya Bodhisattva once met Dīpaṃkara Buddha and spread a piece of deerskin and his own hair to cover the muddy ground [for Dīpaṃkara to tread on], and received a prediction of Buddhahood from him. Although it has passed through a kalpa of destruction the ancient trace remains intact. On fast days various kinds of flowers descend on the spot and multitudes of the common people vie with one another in making offerings [to the stupa]. In a monastery to the west of the stupa there are a few monks. Further to the south, a small stupa marks the spot where the Bodhisattva covered up the muddy ground in a former life. It was erected by King Aśoka at a secluded place to avoid the highway.

Inside the capital city there are the old foundations of a great stupa. I heard the local people say that it had formerly contained a tooth relic of the Buddha and that it was originally a tall and magnificent structure. Now there is no more tooth relic and only the old foundations remain there. Beside them there is a stupa more than thirty feet high whose origin is unknown, according to local tradition. The people said that it dropped down from the air and took root at the spot. It was not built by human beings and it manifested many spiritual signs.

Over ten li to the southwest of the capital city there is a stupa that marks the spot where the Tathāgata once alighted during his flight from Central India on his travels to seek edification. Moved by the event, the people of the country built the base of this spiritual stupa out of admiration. Not far away to the east there is a stupa marking the place where Śākya Bodhisattva met Dīpaṃkara Buddha in a former life and purchased some flowers [to offer to the buddha].

More than twenty li to the southwest of the capital city one reaches a small range of rocky hills where there is a monastery with lofty halls and multistoried pavilions, all constructed out of rocks. The buildings were all quiet and silent and not a single monk was to be found. Within the compound of the monastery there was a stupa more than two hundred feet high, built by King Aśoka.

To the southwest of the monastery is a deep gully with overhanging rocks

[on each side], from which water falls down the wall-like precipices. On the  rocky wall at the east precipice is a large cave that was the dwelling place of the nāga Gopāla. The entrance is small and narrow and it is dark inside the cave; water drips from the rocks down to the mountain path. Formerly there was a shadowy image of the Buddha, resembling his true features with all the good physical marks, just as if he were alive. But in recent years it is not visible to everyone and even those who see it can only perceive an indistinct outline. Those who pray with utmost sincerity may get a spiritual response and see a clear picture, but only for a brief instant.

When the Tathāgata was living in the world the nāga was a cowherd whose duty was to supply the king with milk and cream. Once he failed to fulfill his task properly and was reprimanded by the king. With a feeling of hatred and malice, he purchased some flowers to offer to the stupa of prediction, in the hope that he might be reborn as an evil nāga to devastate the country and do harm to the king. Then he went up to the rocky precipice and jumped down to kill himself. Thus he became a nāga king and lived in this cave. The moment he desired to go out of the cave to carry out his evil wishes, the Tathāgata, with a mind of compassion for the people of the country, who would suffer havoc caused by the nāga, arrived from Central India, flying through his supernatural power. At the sight of the Tathāgata the nāga’s malignant mind ceased. He accepted the rule of non-killing and wished to protect the right Dharma. So he requested that the Tathāgata dwell in the cave permanently and [promised] to always offer alms to all his saintly disciples. The Tathāgata said to him, “I shall enter nirvana but I will leave my shadow behind for you, and I will send five arhats to always receive your offerings. Even when the right Dharma has disappeared into oblivion this arrangement will not be altered. If your malignant mind becomes agitated you should look at my shadow and, on account of your compassion and benevolence, your malignant mind will come to an end. During this bhadra- kalpa (“good eon”) all the future World-honored Ones will have compassion for you and leave their shadows behind.”

Outside the door of Shadow Cave there are two square rocks. On one of the rocks is the trace of the Tathāgata’s footprint with the wheel sign dimly visible and it sometimes emits a light. On either side of Shadow Cave there are many other caves, which are the places where the saintly disciples of the Tathāgata used to sit in meditation. On a corner to the northwest of the Shadow Cave there is a stupa that marks the place where the Tathāgata once took a walk. Beside it is another stupa, in which are stored the relics of the Tathāgata’s hair and nail parings. Not far from here another stupa marks the spot where the Tathāgata preached on the true doctrine of the skandhas (five attributes of being), the āyatanas (twelve sense fields), and the dhātus (eighteen spheres, consisting of the six sense organs, the six sense objects, and the six consciousnesses). To the west of Shadow Cave there is a large flat rock on which the Tathāgata once washed his robe; the traces of the robe left on the rock are still dimly visible.

At more than thirty li to the southeast of the city one reaches the city of Hilo, which is four or five li in circuit; [its city wall] is high, precipitous, and impregnable. There are flowers, trees, and pools with pure water as bright as a mirror. The inhabitants of the city are simple and honest and they believe in the right Dharma. There is a multistoried pavilion with colorfully painted beams and pillars. On the second story is a small stupa made of the seven precious substances, in which is preserved a piece of the Tathāgata’s skull

bone, twelve inches in circumference with distinct hair pores, yellowish white in color, which is contained in a precious casket that has been placed inside the stupa. Those who wish to tell their fortunes may prepare some fragrant plaster to make an impression of the skull bone and then read a clear written prediction according to the effects of their blessedness. There is another small stupa made of the seven precious substances in which is stored the Tathāgata’s cranial bone, which has the shape of a lotus leaf and is of the same color as the skull bone. It is also contained in a precious casket that has been sealed up and placed [in the stupa]. There is another small stupa made of the seven precious substances, in which is preserved an eyeball of the Tathāgata, as large as a crabapple, brilliant and transparent throughout. It is also contained in a precious casket that has been sealed up and placed [in the stupa]. The Tathāgata’s upper robe, made of fine cotton in a yellowish-red color, is placed in a precious casket. It has lasted a long time and is slightly damaged. The Tathāgata’s pewter staff, with rings made of pewter and a sandalwood handle, is stored in a precious tube.

Recently a king heard that these relics belonged to the Tathāgata and he captured them by force. After returning to his own country the king kept the relics in his palace but less than twelve days later the relics were lost. When he searched for them he found that they had returned to their original location.

These five holy objects have shown many spiritual signs. The king of Kāpiśī ordered five attendants to take care of the relics by offering incense and flowers, and worshipers came to pay reverence to them without cease. The attendants, wishing to spend their time in quietude and thinking that people would value money more than anything else, in order to stop the hubbub caused by visitors, made a rule to the effect that one gold coin would be charged to see the skull bone and five gold coins would be charged for making an impression. This rule was also applicable in different grades to the other relics. Even with these steep fees the number of worshipers increased.

To the northwest of the storied pavilion there is a stupa that is also very lofty and has shown many marvelous signs. When it is touched with a finger it shakes down to the basement and its bells ring harmoniously.

From here going toward the southeast among mountains and valleys for over five hundred li, I reached the country of Gandhāra (at former times incorrectly transcribed as Qiantuowei, in the domain of North India). The country of Gandhāra is more than one thousand li from east to west and over eight hundred li from south to north, with the Indus on the east. The capital city, called Puruṣapura, is more than forty li in circuit. The royal family is extinct and the country is now under the domination of Kāpiśī. The towns and villages are desolate and have few inhabitants. In one corner of the palace city there are over one thousand families. They produce abundant cereals and have flowers and fruit in profusion. The country grows much sugarcane and produces sugar candy. The climate is mild and there is scarcely any frost or snow. The people are shy and timid by nature and are fond of literature and the arts. Most of them respect heretical religions; only a few believe in the right Dharma.

Since ancient times masters who wrote commentaries and theoretical treatises in India, such as Nārāyaṇadeva, Asaṅga, Vasubandhu, Dharmatrāta, 879c Manoratha, Pārśva, and so on, have been born in this country. There were more than a thousand monasteries but they are now dilapidated and deserted, in desolate condition. Most of the stupas are also in ruins. There are about a hundred deva temples inhabited by various heretics.

To the northeast inside the royal city there are the remains of the foundation of a precious terrace on which the Buddha’s alms bowl was once placed. After the Tathāgata’s demise the bowl was brought to this country, where it was venerated with formal rituals for several hundred years, and then it was brought to various countries. It is now in Persia. At a distance of eight or nine li to the southeast outside the city, there is a pipal tree more than one hundred feet tall with profuse branches and leaves that cast a dense shade on the ground. The four past buddhas sat under this tree and now statues of the four buddhas are still to be seen there. The remaining nine hundred and ninety-six buddhas of the bhadrakalpa will also sit under it, divinely guarded and protected by gods and deities. Once, when Śākya Tathāgata was sitting under this tree, facing south, he told Ānanda, “Four hundred years after my demise there will be a king named Kaniṣka, who will erect a stupa not far south of here. Most of my bodily remains will be collected in it.”

To the south of the pipal tree there is a stupa constructed by King Kaniṣka. In the four hundredth year after the Tathāgata’s demise King Kaniṣka ascended the throne and ruled over Jambudvīpa. He did not [originally] believe in the theory of retribution for good and evil deeds and contemptuously defamed the buddha-dharma. Once he was hunting in a marsh when a white hare appeared. The king chased after the hare and it suddenly disappeared at this place. In the woods he saw a young cowherd building a small stupa three feet high. The king asked the boy, “What are you doing?” The boy replied, “Formerly Śākya Buddha made a wise prediction: ‘A king will build a stupa at this auspicious place and most of my bodily remains will be collected in it.’ Your Majesty’s holy virtues were cultivated in your previous lives and your name coincides with the one mentioned in the prediction. Your divine merits and superior blessedness will be realized at this time. Thus I am here as a preliminary sign to remind you of the prediction.” With these words, the cowherd vanished.

Upon hearing these words the king was overjoyed and was proud to know that his name had been predicted by the Great Sage in his prophecy. Thereafter he professed the right faith and deeply believed in the buddha-dharma. Around the small stupa he built a stone stupa, wishing to encompass the smaller one, through the power of his merit. But no matter how tall he built the stone stupa the smaller one was always three feet higher, until the larger stupa reached over four hundred feet in height, standing on a base one and a half li in circuit,

with five flights of steps leading up to a height of one hundred fifty feet, so that it then covered the small stupa. Delighted, the king also had gilded copper

disks arranged in twenty-five tiers on the top. Then he placed one hu (hectoliter) of the Tathāgata’s relic bones in the stupa, to which he piously made offerings. When construction of the large stupa had just been completed the king saw that the small stupa was protruding, with half of its structure sideways at the southeast corner of the base [of the great stupa]. Enraged, the kinf threw the smaller stupa upward and it stayed there, half of it appearing in the stone base under the second flight of steps of the stupa, but another small stupa emerged at the original place. The king then gave up and remarked with a sigh, “Human affairs are bewildering but the merits of deities are insuppressible. What is the use of being angry with it, if it is supported by the gods?” Ashamed and fearful, the king apologized and returned home.

These two stupas still stand. Those who are ill and wish to pray for recovery offer incense and flowers to the stupas with pious minds, and in most cases they are cured. On the southern side of the flight of steps at the east of the great stupa there are two carved stupas, one three and the other five feet high, in the same style and shape as the great stupa. There are also two carved images of the Buddha, one four and the other six feet in height, resembling the Buddha sitting cross-legged under the bodhi tree. In the sunshine these images are of a dazzling golden color, and when they are gradually covered by shade the lines on the stone become bluish-violet in color. Some local old people said that several hundred years ago there were golden-colored ants in the crevice of the stone; the big ones were the size of a fingernail and the small ones were the size of a grain of wheat. Following one another, they gnawed at the surface of the stone and the lines they made on the stone looked like incised grooves that were filled with golden sand to delineate the images, which are still in existence.

On the south side of the flight of steps leading up to the great stupa there is a painting of the Buddha sixteen feet in height, with two busts above the chest but only one body below it. Some old people said that there was formerly a poor man who sustained himself by working as a laborer. Once he earned a gold coin and wished to make an image of the Buddha. He came to the stupa and said to a painter, “I wish to make a portrait of the Tathāgata’s excellent features but I have only one gold coin, which is really insufficient for remuneration. This has been my long-cherished desire but I am poor and lack money.” In consideration of the poor man’s sincerity, the painter did not argue about the payment and promised to accomplish the job. Another man under the same circumstances came with a gold coin to request the painter to draw a portrait of the Buddha. Thus the painter accepted the money from both men and he asked another skillful painter to work together with him in drawing a single portrait. When the two men came on the same day to worship the Buddha, the two painters showed them the portrait, pointing at it and saying, “This is the portrait you ordered.” The two men looked at each other, bewildered. The painters realized that they were doubtful about 880b the matter and said to them, “Why are you pondering the matter for so long? Whatever object we undertake to produce is done without the slightest fault. If our words are not false the portrait will show miracles.” As soon as they had uttered these words the portrait manifested a wonder: the body split into two busts, while the shadows intermingled into one, with the features shining brilliantly. The two men were happily convinced and delightedly fostered faith.

More than a hundred paces to the southwest of the great stupa there is a standing image of the Buddha made of white stone, eighteen feet high, facing north. It often worked miracles and frequently emitted light. Sometimes people see it walking at night and circumambulating the great stupa. Recently a band of robbers intended to enter the stupa to steal the contents. The image came out to meet the robbers head-on and the robbers withdrew in fear. Then the image returned to its original place and stood there as usual. Thereafter the robbers corrected their error and made a fresh start in life. They walked about in towns and villages and related the event to all people, far and near.

At the left and right sides of the great stupa there are hundreds of small stupas, arranged as closely together as the scales of a fish. The Buddha’s images are magnificent, having been made with perfect craftsmanship. Unusual fragrances and strange sounds are sometimes perceived and spirits and genies, as well as holy ones, may be seen circumambulating the great stupa. The Tathāgata predicted that when this stupa has burned down and been rebuilt seven times, the buddha-dharma will come to an end. Previous sages have recorded that it has been destroyed and reconstructed three times. When I first came to this country the stupa had just suffered the disaster of conflagration. It is now under repair and the structure is not yet completed.

To the west of the great stupa there is an old monastery built by King Kaniṣka. The multistoried pavilion and the houses built on terraces were constructed so that eminent monks could be invited in recognition of their distinguished merits. Although the buildings are dilapidated they can still be regarded as wonderful constructions. There are a few monks who study the Hinayana teachings. Since the monastery was constructed it has produced extraordinary personages from time to time, who were either writers of treatises or people who realized sainthood. The influence of their pure conduct and perfect virtue is still functioning.

On the third story of the pavilion is the room used by Venerable Pārśva (“Ribs”). It has been in ruins for a long time but its location is indicated with a mark. The venerable monk was a Brahmanical teacher but he became a Buddhist monk at the age of eighty. Some young people in the city sneered at him, saying, “You stupid old man, why are you so ignorant? A Buddhist monk has two duties: first to practice meditation and second to recite scriptures. Now you are getting old and feeble and cannot make any more progress. So you are trying to pass yourself off as a monk among the pure mendicants but you do nothing but eat your fill.”

Having heard this reproach, Venerable Pārśva apologized to the people and made a vow, saying, “If I do not thoroughly master the teachings of the Tripiṭaka and do not cut off all desires of the three realms of the world, so as to realize the six supernatural powers and possess the eight emancipations, I shall not lie down to sleep with my ribs touching the mat.” He then worked hard and always meditated whether he was walking, sitting, or standing still. In the daytime he studied theories and doctrines and at night he sat quietly in meditation with a concentrated mind. In three years’ time he completely mastered the Tripiṭaka, cut off the desires of the three realms of the world, 880c and obtained the wisdom of the three knowledges. As the people respected him, they called him Venerable Ribs (Pārśva).

To the east of Venerable Pārśva’s chamber there is an old room in which Vasubandhu Bodhisattva composed the Abhidharmakośa-śāstra. Out of respect for him the people had the room sealed and indicated by a mark.

On the second story of the pavilion, at a place more than fifty paces to the south of Vasubandhu Bodhisattva’s room, is the place where the śāstra master Manoratha (“As You Wish”) composed the Vibhāṣā-śāstra. The śāstra master was born a thousand years after the nirvana of the Buddha. When he was young he loved learning and was eloquent in speech. His fame spread far and both clerics and laypeople had faith in him. At that time the influence of King Vikramāditya (“Valor Sun”) of Śrāvastī reached far and he brought the various parts of India under his domination. Every day he distributed five lakhs of gold coins as alms to paupers, orphans, and the solitary. The state treasurer, fearing that the national treasury would be exhausted, ironically remonstrated with the king, saying, “Your Majesty’s strong influence extends to various peoples and your kindness benefits even insects. Pray spend five more lakhs of gold coins to relieve the poor and needy of the four quarters. When the treasury is exhausted we can levy more taxes and repeated taxation will arouse the people’s resentment and grievance everywhere, but the monarch above may show off his kindness in bestowing charity upon the people and we subjects below will bear the blame of being disrespectful.” The king said, “We collect surplus money to give to those who are short of it, it is not for ourselves that we squander the national wealth.” Thus five lakhs of gold coins were added to the sum of money given to the poor and needy.

Later, while out hunting, the king lost the trace of a wild boar and a man who found the animal was granted a reward of one lakh of gold coins. Now when the śāstra master Manoratha once had his hair shaved, he paid the barber one lakh of gold coins and the state annalist accordingly put the event on record. The king was ashamed to have been surpassed by a monk in lavishing money and intended to insult the śāstra master Manoratha in public. Thus he summoned a hundred heretical teachers of high virtue and deep learning, to whom he issued an order, saying, “We wish to glean various views to find out the truth but different schools have different theories, so we do not know where to fix our mind. Now we wish to see which of your schools is superior and which is inferior, so that we may know which way we should follow exclusively.”

At the time the discussion was held the king issued another order, saying, “These heretical śāstra masters are brilliant and talented scholars and the śramaṇas of the Dharma should master their own theories well. If they win in the debate we shall venerate the buddha-dharma; otherwise we will slaughter the Buddhist monks.” Then Manoratha debated with the heretics and defeated ninety-nine of the opponents, who fled in retreat. He slighted the last antagonist with contempt and talked with him fluently. When he came to the subject of fire and smoke, the king and the heretic said aloud, “The śāstra master Manoratha has made a faulty statement. It is common sense that smoke precedes fire.” Although Manoratha wished to explain his viewpoint no one would listen to his argumentation. Ashamed of being insulted in public, he bit off his tongue and wrote a letter to his disciple Vasubandhu, saying, “Among groups supported by factions one cannot hold a great principle in 881a competition, and in an assembly of ignorant people there is no way to argue for the right theory.” He died after having written these words.

Not long afterward, King Vikramāditya lost his kingdom and was succeeded by another king who adored and respected people of eminence and wisdom. Wishing to rehabilitate his teacher’s good name, Vasubandhu Bodhisattva came to the new king and said to him, “Your Majesty rules the kingdom with your saintly virtues and you render support to all living beings. My late teacher Manoratha was learned in abstruse and profound theories but the previous king held a grudge against him and besmirched his good name in public. As I have studied under his instruction I wish to avenge the wrong done to my teacher.”

The king, knowing that Manoratha had been a wise man and appreciating Vasubandhu’s upright character, summoned all the heretics who had debated with Manoratha to a meeting. Vasubandhu then reiterated what his teacher had expounded and all the heretics were defeated and withdrew.

Going to the northeast for more than fifty li from the monastery built by King Kaniṣka, I crossed a large river and reached the city of Puṣkarāvatī, which is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. It is well populated and the lanes and alleys are connected with each other. Outside the west gate of the city there is a deva temple, in which the deva image is austere in appearance and often works miracles. To the east of the city there is a stupa built by King Aśoka. It marks the place where the four past buddhas preached the Dharma. Ancient saints and sages coming from Central India to subdue divine beings and teach human mortals at this place were very numerous. It was at this site that the śāstra master Vasumitra (Shiyou in Chinese, formerly transcribed erroneously as Hexumiduo) composed the Abhidharmaprakaraṇa-pāda-śāstra.

Four or five li to the north of the city there is an old monastery whose buildings are in desolation, with a few resident monks who are followers of Hinayana teachings. This is the place where the śāstra master Dharmatrāta (known as Fajiu in Chinese and erroneously transcribed as Damoduoluo in olden times) composed the Abhidharmatābhidharma-hṛdaya-śāstra. Beside the monastery there is a stupa several hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. The wood carvings and stone sculptures are quite different from work done by human artisans. Formerly, when Śākya Buddha was a king, he practiced the way of the bodhisattva at this place and gave alms tirelessly to all living beings according to their wishes. He was the king of this land for one thousand lives, and it was at this auspicious place where he surrendered his eyes in one thousand lives.

Not far east of where Śākya Buddha forsook his eyes there are two stone stupas, both more than one hundred feet high. The one on the right was erected by Brahmā and the one on the left by Indra, and both are beautifully decorated with wonderful jewels and gems. After the demise of the Tathāgata the gems turned into stone. Although the foundations have sunk the stupas still stand high and lofty.

More than fifty li to the northwest of the stupas built by Brahmā and Indra

881b there is a stupa that marks the place where Śākya Tathāgata converted the goddess Hārītī to prevent her from doing harm to people. Thus it became the custom of the country to pray to the goddess for offspring.

More than fifty li to the north of the place where Hārītī was converted, there is a stupa built at the spot where Śyāmaka Bodhisattva (formerly transcribed incorrectly as Shanmo Bodhisattva) gathered fruit to offer to his blind parents in fulfillment of his filial duty, and he met the king who was hunting and who accidentally hit him with a poisoned arrow. Indra, moved by Śyāmaka’s mind of sincerity, dressed the wound with medicine and his virtuous deed inspired the gods, who restored him to life very quickly.

Going to the southeast for more than two hundred li from the place where Śyāmaka Bodhisattva was injured, I reached the city of Varṣa. To the north of the city there is a stupa built at the place where Prince Sudāna (“Good Tooth” [sic]) said farewell to his countrymen at the city gate when he was banished from the city, and apologized to the people for having given his father’s elephant as a gift to a brahman. In the monastery beside the stupa there are more than fifty monks, all of whom are followers of the Hinayana teachings. It was at this place that the śāstra master Īśvara (“Self-existence”) composed the Abhidharmadīpa-śāstra.

Outside the east gate of Varṣa there is a monastery with more than fifty monks, all of whom are followers of the Mahayana teachings. There is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Formerly, when Prince Sudāna was living in exile at Daṇḍaloka Mountain (formerly known as Tante Mountain erroneously), a brahman begged for his sons and wife and then sold them at this place.

At a place more than twenty li to the northeast from Varṣa one reaches Daṇḍaloka Mountain. On the ridge there is a stupa built by King Aśoka to mark the place where Prince Sudāna once lived in seclusion. Not far away there is another stupa, built at the spot where the prince gave away his sons and wife to a brahman. The brahman beat the prince’s sons and wife until their blood ran to the ground and stained the earth. Even now the grass and plants still retain a reddish hue. The cave on the cliff was the place where the prince and his wife practiced meditation. The branches of the trees in the valley droop like curtains, and the prince used to roam about here. Nearby is a stone hermitage that was the abode of an ancient risk (sagely anchorite).

At more than one hundred li to the northwest from the hermitage one crosses over a small hill and arrives at a large mountain. On the south of the mountain there is a monastery, in which lived a few monks who studied Mahayana teachings. The stupa beside it was built by King Aśoka at the place where the risk Unicorn once lived. This risk was ensnared by a lustful woman and lost his supernatural powers. The lustful woman then rode on his shoulders and returned to the city.

        At more than fifty li to the northeast from Varṣa one reaches a lofty mountain, on which there is a bluish stone image of Bhīmādevī, wife of Maheśvara. The local people said that this image of the goddess existed naturally. It showed many marvels and many people came to give prayers. In all parts of India people, both noble and common, who wish to pray for blessedness flock to this place from far and near. Those who wish to see the physical form of the goddess may get a vision of her after fasting for seven days with a sincere and concentrated mind, and in most cases their wishes will be fulfilled. At the foot of the mountain there is a temple for Maheśvara in which the ash-smearing heretics perform ceremonies.

Going for a hundred fifty li to the southeast from the Bhīmādevī temple I reached the city of Uḍakhand, which is more than twenty li in circuit, bordering the Indus River in the south. The inhabitants are rich and happy. Precious goods pile up high and most of the rare and valuable things of different places are collected here.

Going for more than twenty li to the northwest from Uḍakhand I reached the city of Śalātura, the birthplace of the risk Pāṇini, author of the Śabdavidyā-śāstra.At the beginning of antiquity the written language was rich and extensive in vocabulary, but with the passage of the kalpa of destruction the world became empty, and afterward the long-lived deities descended to the earth to guide human beings. Thereafter, literary documents were produced, and thenceforth the source of literature became a torrential flood. Brahmā and Indra wrote model compositions as the time required, and the rises of each of the heretical systems formed their own words. The people studied what was taught by their predecessors and emulated what was handed down; but the efforts of the students were wasted because it was difficult for them to master everything in detail.

At the time when the human life span was a hundred years, the risk Pāṇini was born with innate knowledge of wide scope. Feeling pity at the shallowness of learning in his time, and wishing to expunge what was superficial and false and delete what was superfluous, he traveled about to make inquiries into the way of learning. He met with Maheśvara and told the deity of his intention. Maheśvara said, “How grand it is! I shall render you assistance.” The risk withdrew after hearing these words and concentrated his mind to ponder the matter. He collected all words and composed a text of one thousand stanzas, each stanza consisting of thirty-two syllables. In this book he made a thorough study of the written and spoken language of both ancient and modern times, and offered it to the king in a sealed envelope. The king treasured it very much and ordered that all the people of the country should learn the text; one who could recite it fluently by heart would be rewarded with a thousand gold coins. Thus this text was transmitted from teacher to pupil and became prevalent at that time. Henceforth the brahmans in this city are great scholars of high talent with knowledge of wide scope.

In the city of Śalātura there is a stupa built at the place where an arhat converted a disciple of Pāṇini. Five hundred years after the demise of the Tathāgata a great arhat came from Kaśmīra to this place in the course of his journey. When he saw a brahman teacher beating a schoolboy, he asked the 882a brahman, “Why are you chastising the child?” The brahman said, “I asked him to learn the Śabdavidyā-śāstra but he has not made progress with the passage of time.” The arhat smiled amiably and the old brahman said, “A śramaṇa should be compassionate and have sympathy for all living beings. But you are now smiling and I would like to know why.” The arhat said in reply, “It is not easy for me to tell you, for fear that it might cause you deep doubt. Have you ever heard about the risk Pāṇini, who composed the Śabda- vidyā-śāstra for the instruction of posterity?” The brahman said, “He was a scion of this city. Out of admiration for his virtue his disciples have made an image of him, which is still in existence.” The arhat said, “This son of yours is [a reincarnation of] that risk. On account of his rich knowledge he took delight in studying worldly books, discussing only the heretical theories and never researching the truth. He wasted his spirit and wisdom and is still involved in the wheel of rebirth. By virtue of his surplus good deeds he has been reborn as your beloved son. But he simply wasted his energy studying the diction and language of worldly books  How can this be the same as the Tatham- gate’s holy teachings, which give rise to bliss and wisdom in a mysterious way?

“In olden times there was a decayed tree by the shore of the South Sea, and five hundred bats lived in the holes of the tree. Once a caravan of merchants stayed under the tree. As the season was windy and chilly and the merchants were hungry and cold, they piled up firewood and built a fire under the tree. The smoke and flames gradually began to burn fiercely and set the decayed tree on fire. One of the merchants recited the Abhidharma piṭaka after midnight, and the bats, even though scorched by the heat, so loved to listen to the recitation of the Dharma that they would not leave the place; they disregarded the intense heat and died in the tree. According to their karmic force they were reborn as human beings and renounced their homes to learn and practice [the Buddhist teachings]. As they had heard the recitation of the Dharma they were clever and intelligent and realized sainthood; thus they became fields of blessedness for the world.

“Recently King Kaniṣka and Venerable Pārśva summoned five hundred holy persons in Kaśmīra to compile the Vibhāṣā-śāstra, and these five hundred holy persons are the five hundred bats that lived in that decayed tree. Although I am an unworthy person I was one of them. From this we may see that  there is such a great difference between the superior and the inferior, the virtuous and the vicious, as that between those that fly high in the air and those that crouch down on the ground. Permit your beloved son to become a monk, for the merits of becoming a monk are indescribable in words.”

After having spoken these words the arhat performed miracles and disappeared all of a sudden. The brahman cherished a deep feeling of awe and faith and exclaimed sādhu (“excellent”) for a long time. He related everything to the people of the neighborhood and permitted his son to become a monk to learn and practice [the Buddhist teachings]. He then gained faith and honored the Triple Gem, and his countrymen have accepted his edification with more and more earnestness up to this day.

Going from Uḍakhand to the north over mountains and across rivers for more than six hundred li, I reached the country of Udyāna. (This means “park,” as it was a pleasure garden of a previous wheel king. Formerly it was transcribed as Wuchang or Wutu, both erroneously. It is in the domain of North India.)

End of Fascicle II of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

Fascicle III

Eight Countries, fromUdyāna to Rājapura

  1. The Country of Udyāna                           5. The Country of Uraśā
  2. The Country of Balūra                             6. The Country of Kaśmīra
  3. The Country of Takṣaśilā                        7. The Country of Parṇotsa
  4. The Country of Siṃhapura                      8. The Country of Rājapura

The country of Udyāna is over five thousand li in circuit, with mountains and valleys connecting each other and rivers and marshes linking together. Although crops are planted, the yield is poor owing to the infertility of the land. There are many grapevines but sugarcane is scanty. The country produces gold and iron and the soil is suitable for growing saffron. The woods are exuberant and flowers and fruit are abundant. The climate is mild with timely wind and rain. The people are timid and overcautious by nature and the practice of fraudulence is the common custom. They enjoy learning but do not make profound studies, and they take the recitation of spells as their profession. They mostly wear white cotton and have few other garments. Although they speak a different dialect, it is roughly the same as that spoken in India, and their written language and etiquette are closely related to those of India.

They hold Buddhism in high esteem and reverently believe in the Mahayana teachings. Along the two sides of the Śubhavastu River there were formerly one thousand four hundred monasteries, but most of them are now in desolation. In the old days there were eighteen thousand monks but the number has gradually decreased. They all study Mahayana teachings and spend their time in silent meditation. They can recite their books well but they do not make researches into the deep meanings. They are pure in observing the disciplinary rules and are specially adept in reciting incantations. There are five traditions of the Vinaya rules, namely, the Dharmaguptaka, the Mahīśāsaka, the Kāśyapīya, the Sarvāstivāda, and the Mahāsāṃghika. There are more than ten deva temples with heretics living together. There are four or five fortified cities, and the king mostly rules over the country

from the city of Maṅgala, which is sixteen or seventeen li in circuit and is well populated.

Four or five li to the east of Maṅgala there is a stupa that has shown a great number of spiritual signs. This was the spot where the Buddha, as the risk Patience in a previous life, had his limbs mutilated by King Kali (“Fighting,” formerly transcribed as Geli erroneously).

Going to the northeast for two hundred and fifty or sixty li from Maṅgala, I came to a great mountain and reached Apalāla Dragon Spring, which is the source of the Śubhavastu River and has a tributary flowing to the southwest.

Morning and evening the white spray falls like snowflakes with all the colors of the rainbow, shining upon all sides. At the time of Kāśyapa Buddha the dragon [of this spring] was born a human being named Jingqi, who was an expert in the art of exorcism and had restrained a malicious dragon from causing rainstorms. It was because of his help that the people of the country had surplus grain to store at home. Out of gratitude for the exorcist’s virtuous deeds, each household of the inhabitants contributed one dou (ten liters) of grain as a gift to him. As time passed some people neglected their duty, and Jingqi became angry and wished to become a malignant dragon and cause storms to spoil the seedlings of the crops. After his death he was reborn a dragon at this place and caused white water to flow from the spring and it damaged the fertility of the soil. When Śākya Tathāgata came to guide the world with a mind of great pity he had sympathy with the people of this country, who alone suffered from the disaster, and he sent a deity to the place to convert the ferocious dragon. The deity Vajrapāṇi struck the mountain cliffs with his vajra (thunderbolt) and the shock terrified the dragon king, who came out and took refuge in the Buddha. After hearing the Buddha preaching the Dharma for him, the dragon purified his mind and had faith in enlightenment. The Tathāgata then forbade him to destroy agricultural products. The dragon said, “Whatever food I eat is collected from the fields cultivated by people. Under your holy teachings I fear that I could not sustain my life. I hope that I may be allowed to collect grain for storage once every twelve years.” The Tathāgata accepted the dragon’s request with compassion. Thus the country suffers this white water calamity once every twelve years.

More than thirty li to the southwest of Apalāla Dragon Spring, on the northern bank of the river, there is a huge rock with a footprint of the Tathāgata, which varies in size according to the power of the merits of the measurer. It was left by the Tathāgata when he was going away after having converted the dragon. Afterward people built a stone chamber in the rock and worshipers came here from far and near to offer flowers and incense. Going downstream for more than thirty li, one reaches the rock on which the Tathāgata washed his robe. The lines of the robe are still clearly visible, as if they were carved into the rock.

More than four hundred li to the south of Maṅgala one reaches Hiḍḍa Mountain, where the stream in the valley flows westward. As one goes up to the east against the current of the stream, there are various kinds of flowers and strange [types of] fruit, covering the gully and climbing the steeps. The peaks and cliffs are precipitous and the brooks and ravines wind and meander. The sound of loud talking and the echo of music are sometimes heard. Lying linked together in the valley are square rocks that resemble bedsteads made by craftsmen. This was the place where  once in a former life the Tathāgata forsook his life to hear half a stanza of the Dharma. (The word “stanza” was formerly transcribed as jie, an abbreviation of the original Sanskrit, or as 883a jieta, a mispronunciation of the Sanskrit word. The correct reading should be gāthā, meaning a “verse” consisting of thirty-two syllables.)

More than two hundred li to the south of Maṅgala is Mahāvana (“Great Forest”) Monastery, located beside a mountain. This was the place where the Tathāgata, when he was practicing the way of the bodhisattva in one of his previous lives as a king named Sarvadatta (“All-giving”), came incognito after having abandoned his kingdom to avoid an enemy. He met a poor brahman coming to beg for alms. Since the king had lost his kingdom he had nothing to give as alms. So he asked the brahman to bind him, send him to the enemy king, and claim a reward so that he might give the reward as alms to the brahman.

Going down the mountain for thirty or forty li from the northwest of Mahāvana Monastery, one reaches Mayū (“Bean”) Monastery. There is a stupa over one hundred feet high, beside which is a big square rock with a footprint of the Tathāgata. In one of his previous lives the Buddha stood on the rock and emitted millions of rays of light to illumine Mahāvana Monastery, while he related the Jātaka stories to human and divine beings. Below the base of the stupa there is a stone, yellowish-white in color and which always exudes an oily substance. This was the place where the Tathāgata, when practicing the way of the bodhisattva, wrote down scriptures with a splinter of his bone in order to hear the right Dharma.

Sixty or seventy li to the west of Mayū Monastery is a stupa built by King Aśoka. This was the place where in order to acquire Buddhahood when he was practicing the way of the bodhisattva the Tathāgata, in a former life as a king named Śivaka (“Giving,” formerly transcribed as Shipi erroneously), cut his body to ransom a dove from a hawk.

More than two hundred li to the northwest of the place where the dove was ransomed, one enters the Sanirāja Valley and reaches Sarpauṣadhi (“Serpent Medicine”) Monastery, where there is a stupa over eighty feet high. This was the place where a famine and pestilence occurred when the Tathāgata was Indra in a former life. Medical treatment failed to cure the people, who died one after another on the road. With a mind of compassion Indra wished to save them, so he transformed himself into a huge python lying dead in the valley, and an announcement echoed in the air. Those who heard it happily rushed to the spot to cut off pieces of flesh, which were immediately regenerated, to satisfy their hunger and cure their disease. Not far away there is the great Sūma Stupa, marking the place where the Tathāgata, as Indra in in one of his former lives, pitied the people suffering during a year of famine. He changed himself into a large sūma (water) serpent and all those who ate its flesh were cured.

Beside the cliff at the north of the Sanirāja River there is a stupa that often cures sick people who come to pray for the recovery of their health. When in a former life the Tathāgata was a peacock king, he came here with his flock. As it was the hot season, the peacocks were thirsty but they could not

find any water to drink. The peacock king then pecked the cliff to let water flow out of the rock. Now a pond has been formed there, and its water is effective for healing illness. There are traces of the peacocks still visible on the stone.

More than sixty or seventy li southwest from Maṅgala there is a stupa over sixty feet high built by King Uttarasena at the east side of a great river. When the Tathāgata was about to enter nirvana he told the assembly of monks, “After my nirvana, King Uttarasena of Udyāna should be given a portion of my relic bones.” The various other kings wished to share the relics equally among themselves and, as King Uttarasena arrived later, he was despised by the other kings. At that time all the people, heavenly beings, and monks reiterated the Tathāgata’s last words. Thus King [Uttarasena] took part in sharing the relics and carried his portion back to his own country, where he reverently constructed a stupa.

On the bank beside the great river there is a huge rock in the shape of an elephant. Formerly, when King Uttarasena used his great white elephant to carry the relics home, it suddenly fell down and died at this place; it was transformed into a rock and a stupa was erected beside it.

More than fifty li to the west of Maṅgala and across a great river, one reaches Rohitaka (“Red”) Stupa, which is over fifty feet in height and was built by King Aśoka. Formerly when the Tathāgata was practicing the way of the bodhisattva as a king named Maitrībala, he drew blood from his body to feed five yakṣas (formerly transcribed as yecha erroneously).

More than thirty li to the northwest of Maṅgala, one reaches Ad bhuta (“Marvelous Stone”) Stupa, which is over forty feet in height. Formerly the Tathāgata preached the Dharma to instruct human and heavenly beings at this place. When the Tathāgata had left the place this stupa emerged from the ground, to which the people offered incense and flowers reverently, without cease.

Crossing the great river at the west of the stone stupa and going for thirty or forty li, I reached a vihāra in which is enshrined an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva (known as Guanzizai in Chinese. When it is pronounced in connected syllables it reads as the above-mentioned Sanskrit form, and when it is read separately it is divided into avalokita, translated as guan or “observe,” and īśvara, translated as zizai or “master.” Formerly it was translated as Guangshiyin, Guanshiyin, or Guanshizizai, all erroneously). Its protective spiritual influence is latent but its divine manifestations are apparent. Both monks and laypeople come here one after another to make offerings to it without cease.

Going northwest for one hundred forty or fifty li from the image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva, I reached Lanpolu Mountain, on top of which is a dragon lake more than thirty li in circuit, a vast expanse of green water as pure as a brilliant mirror. Formerly when King Virūḍhaka went to attack the Śākyas, four men of the Śākya clan resisted the [invading] army and their relatives were exiled to different places. One of the four men came out of the capital city and, feeling tired during the march, he stopped midway. At that time a wild goose came before him and, as the bird was docile and friendly the man climbed onto its back. The goose flew up and alighted beside the lake. The Śākya man, having traveled through the air and arrived in a distant and strange land, lost his way and took a nap under the shade of a tree.

The young daughter of the dragon in the lake was enjoying the scenery at the lakeside when she suddenly saw the Śākya refugee. Fearing that her shape was unfit [to appear before a stranger], she changed herself into a human being and stroked him. The Śākya man, startled, asked her, “I am a poor traveler; why are you so intimate with me?” Then he tried to be affectionate with the girl and attempted to have illicit intercourse with her. The girl said, “If I had my parents’ permission I would be glad to comply with your wishes. But even though you show me favor [I cannot accept it] without my parents’ consent.” The Śākya said, “In this wilderness of mountains and valleys, where is your home?” The girl said, “I am the daughter of the dragon in this lake. I have heard that people of your noble clan have become destitute and homeless in the course of fleeing from calamity. I am lucky to have this opportunity to comfort you in your fatigue while on an excursion here. You ask me to have intimacy with you but I have not received instructions from my parents. Moreover, it is due to my evil deeds done in past lives that I have been born in the form of a dragon. A human being and an animal are beings of different ways and [their union] is unthinkable.” The Śākya man said, “Once I get your consent my mind will be satisfied.” The dragon girl said,

“Then I shall accept your orders and will do whatever you wish me to do.”

The Śākya man then made an oath in his mind: “I shall render the whole body of this dragon girl [permanently] transformed into that of a human being by the power of whatever blessedness and virtue I have accumulated.” So the dragon girl actually changed her form through the power of the man’s blessedness. Having assumed the form of a human being, the girl was overjoyed and thanked the Śākya, saying, “Due to my past evil deeds I was born in the cycle of the evil ways of existence. I am lucky that your power of blessedness has transformed my wicked body, in which I have been reborn for many kalpas in the past, into a human figure in an instant. I am so grateful to you that even if I were to smashed my body into pieces it would not be sufficient to express my thanks. I am willing to be intimate with you but I fear people’s criticism. I wish to tell my parents to arrange the rites in the proper way.”

The dragon girl returned to the lake and said to her parents, “Today when on an excursion I met a Śākya man, who by the power of his blessedness transformed me into a human being. As we wish to get married I venture to inform you of the fact.” The dragon king was pleased with human beings and had respect for the holyŚākya clan, so he consented to his daughter’s request and came out of the lake to express his thanks to the man, saying, “You condescend to marry my daughter despite her station as a nonhuman being. Please come to my home and let her serve you.”

At the dragon king’s invitation, the Śākya man came in and stayed in his abode. He lived in the dragon palace together [with the dragon girl] after performing due ceremonies and the two of them shared a happy conjugal life with great pleasure. But the Śākya man always feared and loathed the sight of dragons, so he wished to beg leave to depart. The dragon king stopped him, saying, “Please do not go far away but stay near us as neighbors. I shall cause you to possess territory and have the grand title of king; you will have ministers and subjects under your control and rule over the country for a long time.” The Śākya declined, saying, “What you have said is not my wish.”

The dragon king then put a sword into a small chest and covered it with a piece of the best white cotton. He said to the Śākya man, “Take this white cotton and present it to the king. He will certainly accept the gift with his own hands from a man coming from afar. At that moment you can kill the 884a king, and wouldn’t it be good to seize the kingdom in such a way?”

Thus, at the instigation of the dragon, the Śākya went to offer the gift. When the king of Udyāna personally took up the white cotton, the Śākya got hold of his sleeve and stabbed him. The king’s attendants and guards were thrown into a hubbub of confusion at the flight of steps leading up to the audience hall. The Śākya wielding the sword said to them, “This sword in my hand was given to me by a divine dragon to kill those who surrender after the others or who refuse to serve me.” Fearing his divine martial power, they all supported him in his ascent to the throne. Then he rectified the abuses of the government and implemented new policies, eulogizing the sages and sympathizing with those who were in trouble. He mobilized his retinue and rode in a carriage to return to the dragon palace to report on his mission, as well as to welcome the dragon girl to the capital.

As the influence of the dragon girl’s evil deeds done in the past was not yet completely wiped out, she often assumed her dragon form with nine heads when in her private chamber. The Śākya man feared and abhorred the sight and did not know what to do about it. He waited until the girl was asleep and approached to cut off her heads with a sharp knife. The dragon girl, startled from sleep, said, “This will not be advantageous to our offspring. Not only would I be slightly injured but your descendants will suffer from headache.” Thus the clans people of this country often suffer from this ailment. Although it is not continuously painful it recurs from time to time.

After the death of the Śākya man, his son succeeded to the throne as King Uttarasena (“Superior Army”). After King Uttarasena had ascended the throne his mother lost her sight. When the Tathāgata had subdued the Apalāla dragon and was on his return journey, he descended from the air and alighted at the palace at a time when King Uttarasena was out hunting. Then the Tathāgata briefly preached the Dharma to [Uttarasena’s] mother. Having met the Holy One and heard the Dharma, she regained her sight. The Tathāgata asked her, “Your son is a clansman of mine. Where is he now?” The king’s mother said, “He went out in the morning on a hunting excursion. He will return soon.” When the Tathāgata and his retinue of monks were about to resume their journey the king’s mother said, “I am fortunate to have given birth to a son of the holy clan, and you have had pity on us such that you condescended to visit us in person. My son will return soon—please stay and wait for a moment.” The World-honored One said, “As this person is a clansman of mine he may become enlightened on hearing of my teachings, so it is not necessary for him to receive my personal instruction for the development of his mind. I am going now. You may tell him when he returns that the Tathāgata has gone to Kuśinagara to enter nirvana between the śāla trees. He can obtain some of my relic bones for his private worship.” The Tathāgata and his assembly of monks rose into the air and went away.

While King Uttarasena was hunting, he saw from afar that his palace was shining brightly, and he suspected that a fire might have occurred. He stopped hunting and returned to find that his mother had regained her sight. He asked delightedly, “What auspicious event happened during my brief absence that my kind mother’s eyesight has been restored?” His mother said, “When you were out the Tathāgata came here. After hearing the Buddha’s Dharma I regained my sight. The Tathāgata has gone from here to Kuśinagara to enter 884b nirvana between the śāla trees. He suggested that you go promptly to obtain a portion of his relic bones.”

Upon hearing these words the king wailed piteously and fainted, and recovered only after a long time. He got into his carriage and hurried to the śāla trees, but the Buddha had already entered nirvana. The other kings despised him as a [minor] king from a vulgar borderland; they valued the relic bones they did not wish to share them with him. At that time the assembly of gods and people repeated the Buddha’s last words. Only when the other kings heard the Buddha’s words did they share with him an equal portion of the relics.

Climbing over mountains and crossing valleys to the northwest from Maṅgala, and going upstream along the Indus River, the road is perilous and goes through gloomy gullies, which are linked either by thick ropes or by iron chains, with viaducts and bridges constructed at the precipices and wooden pegs installed on the rocks as steps for climbers to set foot on. After a journey of over one thousand li, I reached the plain of Darada, the old capital of Udyāna, where gold and saffron are produced in abundance. Beside the great monastery at Darada there is a wooden statue of Maitreya Bodhisattva more than a hundred feet tall, of golden hue and latent spiritual power. It was made by the arhat Madhyāntika (formerly transcribed and abridged incorrectly as Motiendi). Through his supernatural powers the arhat brought a craftsman up to Tuṣita Heaven (formerly transcribed as Doushuaita or Doushuta erroneously) three times to observe the fine features of the bodhisattva, and then [the artisan] completed the task. The Dharma has been transmitted to the East since the time when this statue was made.

From here going to the east across mountains and valleys upstream of the Indus River, over flying bridges and viaducts through perilous regions for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Balūra (in the domain of North India).

The country of Balūra is more than four thousand li in circuit. Situated among the Great Snow Mountains, it is long from east to west and narrow from south to north. It yields much wheat and pulse and produces gold and silver. Having the advantage of gold resources the country has ample means for state expenditures. The climate is bitterly cold and the people are rude by nature, lacking in kindness and righteousness and knowing nothing of politeness. Their features are ugly and they wear coarse woolen garments. Their writing is roughly the same as that of India but their spoken language diverges from those of other countries. There are several hundred monasteries with several thousand monks, who do not study the theories of any one specific school, and they are mostly defective in observing the Vinaya rules.

From here I went back to Uḍakhand and crossed the Indus River to the south. Flowing southwest, the river is three or four li wide, with pure and limpid rapidly moving water. Poisonous dragons and evil animals make their dens in the river and often overturn the boats of those who are transporting precious objects, seeds of rare flowers and fruit, or the Buddha’s relic bones across the river.

After crossing the river, I reached the country of Takṣaśilā (in the domain of North India). The country of Takṣaśilā is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over ten li in circuit. As the royal family is extinct, the regional chieftains have competed with each other for sovereignty. Formerly

it belonged to the country of Kāpiśī but recently it became a dependency of the country of Kaśmīra. The soil is fertile and the crops are rich, with many springs and luxuriant vegetation. The climate is mild and the people are reckless and brave by custom and they venerate the Triple Gem. There are many monasteries but most of them are in desolation. There are a few monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings.

More than seventy li to the northwest of the capital city is the pond of the dragon king Elāpattra, which is about one hundred paces in circuit. The water is lucid and has lotus flowers of different colors growing in it. This dragon was a monk who injured an elāpattra tree in the time of Kāśyapa Buddha. Therefore, when the people of this land approached the dragon to pray for rain or fine weather they had to invite a monk to go with them to the pond. When the monk snapped his fingers to comfort the dragon the people’s wishes would surely be fulfilled.

Going southeast for more than thirty li, I entered a spot between two mountains where there is a stupa more than a hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. This was the place where Śākya Tathāgata predicted that when Maitreya appears in the world as a buddha four great treasures would naturally come into existence. This auspicious spot is one of the four places. I heard the local people say that during an earthquake all the mountains would shake but for about a hundred paces around this treasure place the earth does not quiver even a little. Some foolish people once vainly attempted to dig up the treasure but the earth quaked and all the people toppled over onto the ground. Beside this spot is a monastery in a very deserted condition, having had no monks living in it for quite a long time.

Twelve or thirteen li to the north of the city is a stupa built by King Aśoka. On fast days it sometimes emits a light amid [a shower of] divine flowers and heavenly music. I heard the local people say that recently a woman suffering from malignant leprosy secretly came to this stupa to make self reproach and repent [of evil deeds she had done in her past lives]. When she saw that the compound was in a filthy condition she removed the dirt, swept the place clean, smeared incense paste and scattered flowers on the ground, and she plucked some blue lotus flowers to scatter on the road. By doing so she was cured of her malignant disease and became beautiful in appearance, and a sweet smell as fragrant as blue lotus issued from her body.

This was also the place where the Tathāgata, while practicing the Dharma in a former life as a great king named Candraprabha (“Moonlight”), cut off his head for almsgiving in the course of acquiring enlightenment. He performed such almsgiving a thousand times in past lives.

Beside this stupa where the head was forsaken, there is a desolate

monastery with a few monks. Formerly Kumāralāta (known as Tongshou in Chinese), a śāstra master of the Sautrāntika school, wrote treatises at this monastery.

Outside the city to the southeast, on the northern side of South Hill, is a stupa over a hundred feet high built by King Aśoka at the place where his son, Prince Kuṇāla, had his eyes torn out due to the calumny of his stepmother.

Blind people prayed at this place and most of them recovered their eyesight.

Prince Kuṇāla, who had been borne by the chief queen, was a handsome man who was well known for his kindness. After the death of the chief queen, his stepmother, a lascivious, immoral woman, tried to force the prince to have illicit relations with her. The prince wept and blamed himself for his refusal and withdrew with an apology. Having been rejected by the prince, the stepmother was ashamed and became angry and having waited for the chance to speak to the king, she said coolly, “Takṣaśilā is in a strategic position, and who else but a royal descendant can be depended on for its protection? Prince Kuṇāla is well known for his kindness and filial piety. Because you do not employ sagacious persons the people are critical of you.” Deluded by these words, the king was pleased with the intrigue and ordered the prince, saying, “I succeeded to the throne handed down by our ancestors to rule over the country and I fear losing it—our forerunners would be disappointed. As Takṣaśilā is a strategic place I now appoint you to garrison that country. State affairs are important and human relationships are treacherous. You must not move about at will so as to jeopardize the foundation of the state. Whenever there is a [written] summons from me you should verify it by my teeth marks. As my teeth are in my mouth, no one can make a forgery.”

The prince thus went to the garrison post by the king’s order, and even though time passed his stepmother became increasingly  angry with him. She issued a false order in the king’s name, sealed it with purple clay, and had it marked with the king’s teeth a when he was asleep. It was then dispatched to the prince to reprimand him. When his assistants knelt down to read the order they looked at each other, not knowing what to do. The prince asked them, “What is it that makes you look so miserable?” They said, “The great king has issued an order to reprimand Your Highness, stating that your eyes should be torn out and that you should be exiled to the valleys among mountains and left there to live or die with your wife. However, the order may be fraudulent and it would be better for you to go see the king face to face and hear his personal verdict.” The prince said, “How can I disobey my father’s order, even if he asked me to die? There is no mistake since the order is sealed with his teeth marks.”

The prince then asked a caṇḍāla (outcaste) to tear out his eyes, and having lost his eyesight he lived thereafter as a beggar, wandering from place to place, until he came to the capital city where the king lived. His wife told him, “This is the royal city and we are now suffering from hunger and cold. Formerly you were a prince but now you are a beggar! I wish to report the matter to the king and ask him to reconsider the reprimand.” Then through some subterfuge they slipped into the royal stable, where they wept in the cool breeze, late into the night, and sang piteously to the accompaniment of a konghou (a sort of harp).

On a lofty pavilion the king heard the melodious singing of melancholy and sorrowful words and, feeling it strange, he asked, “The voice of the singing accompanied by a konghou sounds like that of my son. Why has he 885b come here?” He inquired of the stableman as to who was singing in the stable. So the man brought the blind singer into the king’s presence. Upon seeing the prince, the king felt sorrowful and asked him, “Who disfigured you into such a disastrous condition? If I did not even know that my beloved son had lost his eyesight, how can I [claim to] see into the affairs of my people? Good heavens! Oh, good heavens! How is it that my virtue has been corrupted to such an extent?” The prince wept piteously and apologetically said in reply, “It is because of my filiality that I incurred the blame of Heaven. On such and-such day I suddenly received your compassionate edict. I had no way to speak to you, nor did I dare evade my responsibility [to implement your edict].” Finding out that it had all been done illegally by his second wife, the king inflicted capital punishment upon her without further investigation.

At that time there was at the monastery near the bodhi tree a great arhat named Ghoṣa (“Wonderful Voice”), who possessed the four kinds of unhindered eloquence and was complete with the three insights. The king told him what his blind son had said and wished him to be so kind as to restore his son’s eyesight. At the king’s request the arhat then made an announcement on that day to the people of the country, saying, “On the day after tomorrow I shall speak on the sublime doctrine. You may come listen to the Dharma and each of you should bring a vessel with you to hold your tears.” Thus men and women coming from far and near flocked to the place. At that time the arhat spoke on the twelvefold causation. None of those who heard the Dharma did not shed tears, and they collected the tears in the vessels. When the preaching was over the tears of everyone in the entire assembly were collected in a golden basin. The arhat then made a pledge, saying, ‘‘All that I have said is the Buddha’s ultimate truth. If it is untrue and if I have spoken wrongly, I shall have nothing more to say. Otherwise, I wish to wash the blind man’s eyes to restore his eyesight to what it was before.” Having said this, he used the tears to wash the eyes of the prince, whose eyesight was thus restored.

The king then reproached his ministers and denounced his assistants at court, who were all dismissed, banished, relegated, or executed, and many powerful and wealthy families were deported to the desert to the northeast of the Snow Mountains.

From here going to the southeast across mountains and valleys for over seven hundred li, I reached the country of Siṃhapura (in the domain of North India). The country of Siṃhapura is over three thousand five hundred or six hundred li in circuit, bordering on the Indus River on the west. The capital city of the country is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit, and as it was built with a range of hills at the back it is an impregnable stronghold. The farmers exert little effort but gain much profit from the land. The climate is cold and the people are rude by nature. They are valiant but deceitful by custom. There is no king ruling over the country; it is a dependency of the country of Kaśmīra.

Not far to the south of the city is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Although some of its decorations are missing, it continues to be effective in showing spiritual manifestations. Beside it there is a monastery devoid of monks.

Forty or fifty li to the southeast of the city there is a stone stupa more than

two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. There are about ten ponds around the stupa. The banks of the ponds are built with rocks carved in various strange shapes and clear water rushes into the ponds, giving off spray. Dragons, fish, and other aquatic creatures move about in the grottoes under the water. Lotus flowers of the four colors cover the surfaces of the clear ponds and all kinds of fruit trees blossom luxuriantly in different hues. With the woods reflected in the ponds, this place is truly a pleasure garden. There is a monastery nearby but it has been deserted for a long time.

Not far from the stupa is where the founder of the white-clothed [Jains] realized the principles he was seeking and first preached his doctrine. Now there is a memorial of the event and beside it is a deva temple. His disciples practice austerities, persevering day and night without leisure to take rest. The doctrine preached by the founder was mostly taken from the tenets of the Buddhist scriptures and he taught them according to the different inclinations of people and laid down disciplinary rules. The senior disciples are called bhikṣus and the junior ones śrāmaṇeras. Their manner of living and code of deportment are quite similar to those of the Buddhist monks, except that they keep a tuft of hair on the head and [some] go naked. If they put on any clothing the special color is white, which differentiates them from other sects. The statues of the founder are made, without authority, in the same posture as images of the Tathāgata. The only difference is the costume; the good features are exactly the same.

From here I returned to the northern part of the country of Takṣaśilā, where I crossed the Indus River and, after going southeast for more than two hundred li, I came across a great rocky pass. Formerly Prince Mahāsattva sacrificed his body at this place to feed a starving tigress. About one hundred and forty or fifty paces to the south is a stone stupa, built at the spot where the Mahāsattva had pity on the [starving] tigress. When he came here he pricked himself with a dry bamboo splinter so as to give the tigress his blood. The animal [regained enough strength and subsequently] devoured him. The soil and plants of this place are dark reddish in color, as if stained by blood. When people come to this spot they feel nervous and uneasy, as if they had prickles hurting their backs, and whether or not they believe [the story of the hungry tigress] they are moved to pity.

To the north of this stupa of the sacrifice of the body there is a stone stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. It is decorated with marvelous engravings and sometimes emits a divine light. Smaller stupas and stone niches, counted by the hundreds, surround the sepulchral ground. Those who are suffering from illness circumambulate this place and most of them are cured.

To the east of the stone stupa there is a monastery with more than a hundred monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings. From here going east for more than fifty li, I reached an isolated hill where there is a monastery with over two hundred monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings. There are luxuriant flowers and fruit trees with ponds of spring water as lucid as a mirror. Beside it is a stupa over two hundred feet high, built at the spot where the Tathāgata in a former life converted an evil yakṣa and taught him not to eat meat.

From here going southeast for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Uraśā (in the domain of North India). The country of Uraśā is more than 886a two thousand li in circuit, with mountains and hills connected together, rendering

the cultivated fields narrow and small. The capital city of the country is seven or eight li in circuit; it is without a sovereign king and the country is a dependency of the country of Kaśmīra. The soil is suitable for growing cereals but the country has few flowers and little fruit. The climate is mild and there is not much frost or snow. The people are rough and deceitful and lack the custom of observing the proprieties, and they do not believe in Buddhism. About four or five li to the southwest of the capital city there is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Beside it is a monastery with few monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings.

From here going southeast for more than one thousand li over mountains, along dangerous paths and across iron bridges, I reached the country of Kaśmīra (formerly transcribed erroneously as Jibin, in the domain of North India). The country of Kaśmīra is more than seven thousand li in circuit, with precipitous mountains surrounding it on all sides. Although there are passes the passages are very narrow. Since ancient times no hostile neighboring countries have been able to invade this country. The capital city, with a great river on its west, is twelve or thirteen li from south to north and four or five li from east to west. The soil is suitable for growing cereals and there are plenty of flowers and fruit. It produces horses of the dragon breed and also yields saffron, fire-pearls, and medicinal herbs.

The climate is bitterly cold and there is much snow but little wind. The people wear woolen or cotton clothes. They are frivolous by custom and mostly timid. As the country is protected by a dragon the people hold sway over the neighboring regions. Their features are handsome but they are of deceitful dispositions. They are fond of learning and have a wide scope of knowledge, believing in both heretical teachings and the right teachings. There are over one hundred monasteries with more than five thousand monks. There are four stupas, all built by King Aśoka, each containing about one sheng of the Tathāgata’s relic bones.

In the National Record it is said that this country was originally a dragon lake. Formerly, when the Buddha, the World-honored One, had subdued an evil god in the country of Udyāna and was flying over this country on his way back to Central India, he said to Ānanda, “After my nirvana the arhat Madhyāntika will establish a country at this place, settle people, and propagate the buddha-dharma.” In the fiftieth year after the Tathāgata’s nirvana, Ānanda’s disciple, the arhat Madhyāntika, who possessed the six supernatural powers and had attained the eight emancipations, heard about the Buddha’s prediction with a feeling of joy. He came here and sat down in the woods on a great mountain, showing great supernatural powers. Upon seeing him, the dragon had deep faith in him and asked him what he wanted. The arhat said, “I want you to give me enough space to keep [just] my knees in the lake.” Thereupon the dragon king withdrew some water from the lake to offer [a bit of dry land] to the monk. Through his miraculous powers the arhat enlarged his body [to take more land] as the dragon did his utmost to draw away the water from the lake until it was completely exhausted, so that the dragon had to ask for some place for himself. The arhat reserved a lake more than a hundred li in circuit in the northwest for the dragon, while the dragon’s relatives 886b dwelled separately in a small lake.

The dragon king said, “Now that I have presented all the land of the lake to you, please always accept my offerings.” Madhyāntika said, “As I shall enter parinirvāṇa (complete nirvana) very soon, how will I be able to always accept your offerings, though I would like to?” The dragon then requested that five hundred arhats should always accept his offerings until the extinction of the Dharma, and that after the extinction of the Dharma he should then retake this country as his dwelling lake. Madhyāntika assented to this request.

After having obtained the land the arhat established five hundred monasteries with his great supernatural powers and bought slaves from different countries to serve the monks. After Madhyāntika entered extinction the slaves made themselves rulers. The neighboring countries despise them as lowborn people and do not interact with them, calling them the Krīta (“The Bought”). Now spring water is overflowing at many places.

King Aśoka of Magadha ascended the throne in the hundredth year after the Tathāgata’s nirvana and exerted his influence in distant lands. He deeply believed in the Triple Gem and fostered all creatures of the four forms of birth. There were then five hundred arhat monks and five hundred ordinary monks, whom the king respected and treated with equal hospitality. There was a monk named Mahādeva (“Great Deity”), a person of extensive learning and great wisdom, who had made profound studies of the categories of name and reality. He wrote an elaborate treatise in exposition of theories contrary to the holy teachings [of the Buddha], and all his friends and acquaintances followed his heterodox views. Being unable to discern the arhats from the ordinary monks, King Aśoka had sympathy with those whom he liked and supported those who were on intimate terms with him. He summoned the monks to the Ganges River, intending to drown them in the deep water and kill them all. The arhats, realizing that their lives were at stake, employed their supernatural powers and flew through the air to this country [of Kaśmīra], where they lived in the mountains and valleys. Upon hearing this, King Aśoka was afraid and repented; he came in person to apologize and invited the arhats to return to his country but the arhats flatly refused the invitation. Thus King Aśoka built five hundred monasteries for the arhats and offered the whole country as alms to the community of monks.

King Kaniṣka of the country of Gandhāra ascended the throne in the four hundredth year after the Tathāgata’s nirvana; his influence reached far and distant lands, which then became affiliated with him. In his leisure hours he always studied Buddhist scriptures and each day he invited a monk to preach the Dharma in his palace. As the monks belonged to different schools their views were at variance with each other, and the king was greatly puzzled and could not get rid of his delusions. At that time Venerable Pārśva explained, “In the long period of time since the Tathāgata passed away, his disciples have adhered to different schools and the masters have held various views, each grasping his own opinions and giving rise to contradictions.” The king was quite moved to hear this and, after brooding in a sorrowful mood for a long time, he said to the venerable monk, “By the remnant blessedness of

my ancestors I am lucky enough to have succeeded to the exploits of my predecessors. Although I am far away from the time of the Buddha I am still fortunate. I venture to forget my vulgarity and incompetence and wish to propagate the Dharma by expounding the whole Tripiṭaka according to the tenets of different schools.” Venerable Pārśva said, “Your Majesty has planted the root of good deeds in the past and has accumulated much blessing. It is my wish that Your Majesty should pay attention to the buddha-dharma.”

Then the king issued an order to summon holy and learned monks throughout the country, from far and near. Thus brilliant scholars and wise monks flocked to the assembly from great distances in the four quarters, to be entertained with the four monastic requisites for seven days. Since [the assembly] was for the discussion of the great Dharma, having too many participants would be too chaotic. Thus the king respectfully said to the monks, “Those who have attained sainthood may stay, while those who are still under the bondage of rebirth may .” The remaining number was still too many, so the king declared again, “Those who have completed their learning may stay, while those who are still in the course of learning may go back.” The remaining number was still too many, and so he ordered again, “Those who possess the three insights and have the six supernatural powers may stay, while the rest may go back.” But as the remaining number was still too many, he again issued an order, saying, “Only those who are well versed in the Tripiṭaka with its supramundane theories and who thoroughly understand the five mundane branches of knowledge may remain, while the others may go back.” Thereupon four hundred ninety-nine persons were selected.

The king wished [to hold the convention] in his own country but the climate was too hot and humid for the purpose. He also wished to go to the cave at Rājagṛha, where Mahākāśyapa had convened his assembly. Venerable Pārśva and others discussed the matter and said, “No! [At Rājagṛha] there are many heretics who engage in debate, holding divergent heterodox views. We would get involved with them in disputations and then how could we have the time to write our treatises?” Thus the monks in the meeting all favored the country [of Kaśmīra for the assembly].

Because the country was surrounded by mountains on the four sides and was strongly guarded by yakṣas, and had fertile soil and rich products, it was a place where sages and saints met and took up their lodgings and was frequented by spirits and genies. The monks discussed the place and they all agreed that it was an appropriate location [for the meeting]. The king and the arhats then came from their country [of Gandhāra] to the country [of Kaśmīra] and constructed a monastery to collect and compile the Tripiṭaka with the intention of composing a Vibhāṣā-śāstra.

At that time Venerable Vasumitra, dressed in a monk’s patched robe, was outside the door, when the arhats said to him, “You have not gotten rid of the bondage of the passions and your arguments are absurd and erroneous. You should go far away and not stay here.” Vasumitra said, “You sagacious monks have no doubts about the Dharma and you are spreading the Buddha’s teachings in his place. You are collecting the great doctrines with the intention of writing a standard treatise. Although I am unintelligent, I do know something of the subtle teachings. I have made profound studies of the abstruse texts of the Tripiṭaka and the sublime principles of the five branches of knowledge and I have mastered their essences.” The arhats said, “You must not speak in this manner. You should live in seclusion and attain athwartship quickly. Then it will not be too late for you to come and join us at the meeting.” Vasumitra said, “I deem the attainment of athwartship to be as insignificant as spittle. My ambition is to gain Buddhahood’s I do not wish to go by the small path. But I can still attain the holy fruit of athwartship before a ball of thread falls down to the ground after I have thrown it up into the air.”

The arhats again reproached him, saying, “You are truly an arrogant man.

Arha ship is what all the buddhas have praised and you should quickly realize

it, so as to remove the monks’ doubts.” Vasumitra then tossed a ball of thread up into the air but the devas took hold of it and made an appeal to him, saying, “You should now attain Buddhahood and become the successor to Maitreya in the future, to be specially honored by all the three realms and be someone on which all beings of the four forms of birth can depend. Why should you wish to realize the small fruit here and now?” Upon witnessing this event the arhats apologized [to Vasumitra] and elected him to be the elder of the meeting, and all dubious points were settled by him.

First the five hundred saintly and holy monks composed the Upadeśaśāstra (formerly transcribed wrongly as Youpotishe lun) in a hundred thousand stanzas for the exposition of the Sutra piṭaka (formerly transcribed wrongly as Xiuduoluozang). Then they wrote the Vinaya-vibhāṣā-śāstra in one hundred thousand stanzas for the exposition of the Vinaya piṭaka (formerly transcribed wrongly as Pinayezang). Last, they compiled the Abhidharma-vibhāṣā-śāstra in one hundred thousand stanzas for the exposition of the Abhidharma piṭaka (known as Apitanzang in abbreviation). There are altogether three hundred thousand stanzas with nine million six hundred thousand words for the full explanation of the Tripiṭaka, to be studied for all ages to come. They probe into all branches and ramifications, whether shallow or deep. The general meanings are repeatedly clarified and the subtle sayings made apparent. They are widely circulated for the guidance of posterity.

King Kaniṣka had these treatises incised on red copper plates and kept them in stone cases, and a stupa was constructed for their preservation. He ordered the yakṣa deities to be on guard all around the country to prevent heretics from taking the treatises out of the country. Those who wished to study them might do so inside the country. After having completed the task the king returned to his own capital with his army. When he came out of the western gate of the capital city of the country [of Kaśmīra], he knelt down facing the east to offer the whole country as alms to the monks. But after the Kaniṣka’s death the Krīta tribe resumed kingship, expelled the monks, and demolished the buddha-dharma.

The king of Himatala (“Below the Snow Mountains”) in the country of Tukhāra, a descendant of the Śākya clan, fully occupied his territory and ascended the throne in the six-hundredth year after the Tathāgata’s nirvana. He planted his mind in the earth of the Buddha and poured his sentiments into the sea of the Dharma. When he heard that the Krīta tribesmen were destroying the buddha-dharma, he mustered three thousand brave warriors of his country and outfitted them in the guise of merchants. Carrying with them a large quantity of valuable goods, they hid weapons secretly among the merchandise and came to this country. The lord of [Kaśmīra] treated them with special courtesy. From among the [disguised] merchants, five hundred brave men who possessed tactical skill were selected. Each was equipped with a sharp dagger hidden in his sleeves and they carried rare valuables to present to the lord in person. At that moment the king of Himatala took off the hat of the lord and occupied his throne. The king of the Krīta tribe was taken aback by the surprise attack and was beheaded right away. [The king of Himatala] declared to the people, “I am the king of Himatala in the country of Tukhāra. I was enraged by this low-born tribesman, who openly carried out cruel policies. I have put him to death because he was guilty. You innocent 887b people are guiltless.” The chief ministers of the court were banished to a foreign land. Once order was restored in the country the monks were invited back and monasteries were built, as peacefully as before. The king knelt down outside the western gate of the capital city with his face turned to the east to again offer the country as alms to the monks.

Because the Krīta tribesmen had lost power on account of Buddhist monks on several occasions, they bore them a grudge for generations and hated the buddha-dharma. After a long period of time they resumed the kingship once again. Therefore Buddhism is not much believed in by the people of the country, while deva temples enjoy much attention.

More than ten li to the southeast of the new city, at the south side of a great mountain to the north of the old city, is a monastery with over three hundred monks. In the stupa of the monastery there is a Buddha’s tooth relic, about one and a half inches long, yellowish-white in color. On fast days it sometimes emits a light.

Formerly when the Krīta tribespeople persecuted the buddha-dharma, the monks scattered to various places and lived separately. One of the śramaṇas went to India to visit and worship the sacred sites with utmost sincerity. Later, when he heard that order had been restored in his country, he started on his return journey and on the way he met a herd of elephants running amok in the marsh, trumpeting and rampaging wildly. At the sight of the elephants, the śramaṇa climbed up into a tree to avoid them. At that moment the elephants rushed to a pond to get water to soak the roots of the tree, then they pushed the tree until it fell down.

Having got hold of the śramaṇa, the elephants carried him into a big forest, where a sick elephant was lying on the ground with a painful sore. They put the monk’s hand on the painful spot and he found that the wound had been made by a bamboo prickle. After plucking out the bamboo prickle and applying medicine to the wound, the śramaṇa tore off a piece of his robe to dress the sick elephant’s wounded foot. One of the elephants took a golden casket to the sick elephant and the sick elephant handed it over to the śramaṇa. Upon opening the casket, the śramaṇa saw a Buddha’s tooth relic in it. The monk was surrounded by the elephants and could not get away from them. At mealtime on the following day they brought him strange [kinds of] fruit for his midday meal. After the meal was over, they carried the monk out of the forest and, having carried him for several hundred li, they let him get down and knelt on the ground to worship him before they dispersed.

When the śramaṇa reached the western boundary of the country he boarded a ferryboat to cross a rapid river but in midstream the boat was almost overturned. The other passengers in the boat said among themselves, “This śramaṇa must be the cause of our trouble—almost getting drowned in the river. He must have carried with him some relic bones of the Tathāgata, which are greatly valued by dragons.” The boatman searched the passengers and in fact discovered the Buddha’s tooth relic. The śramaṇa then held the tooth relic high and lowered his head to say to the dragon [in the river], “I now hand this over to you for safekeeping, but I shall come soon to take it back.” He did not cross the river but disembarked and, gazing at the river, he said regretfully, “As I did not learn the craft of subduing dragons I am now bullied by this beast of a dragon!” So he went back to India to learn the magical craft of suppressing dragons. After three years he started again on his return journey, and when he reached the bank of the river and was preparing an altar [for performing the rites], the dragon handed over the casket containing the Buddha’s tooth relic to the śramaṇa, who took it back and enshrined it at 887c this monastery.

Fourteen or fifteen li to the south of the monastery [of the tooth relic] there is a small monastery in which is enshrined a standing statue of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. If a worshiper decides to starve himself to death, in case he cannot fulfill his wish to see the bodhisattva in person, the bodhisattva appears in his marvelous corporeal body out of the statue.

Over thirty li to the southeast of the small monastery I arrived at a great mountain on which there was an old monastery built on a magnificent scale, but it is now mostly in ruins. There is only one small storied pavilion at a corner of the monastery, with more than thirty monks, who study Mahayana teachings. Formerly the śāstra master Saṃghabhadra (known as Zhongxian in Chinese) composed the Abhidharma-nyāyānusāra-śāstra here. On the left and right sides of the monastery there are stupas containing relic bones of great arhats. Monkeys and other wild animals pluck flowers as offerings at all times of the year without interruption, as if they were performing a duty under instruction. There are many strange traces on this mountain, such as rocky walls that are split crosswise, or the hoofprints of horses left on the tops of the peaks. All these traces have strange shapes. They were drawn by arhats who were śrāmaṇeras (not yet fully ordained monks) with their fingers while they were riding to and fro on pleasure trips. Such traces are so numerous that it is difficult to give a full account of them.

Over ten li to the east of the Buddha tooth monastery, on the steep side of a northern mountain, there is a small monastery where the great śāstra master Skandhila composed the Abhidharma-prakaraṇa-pāda-śāstra in former times.

In the small monastery there is a stone stupa more than fifty feet high, containing the relic bones of an arhat. Formerly there was an arhat, a big and tall man who had the appetite of an elephant. The people of the time sneered at him, saying, “You know only how to satisfy yourself and have no sense of right and wrong!” When the arhat was about to enter nirvana he told the people, “I shall soon take up complete extinction. I wish to tell you the wonderful Dharma I have personally realized.” On hearing this the people all jeered at him even more and they all gathered to see what would happen. The arhat then said to them, “Now I shall tell you my personal karmic conditions. Before my present existence I was born an elephant, and I lived in the royal stable of a king of East India. There was then in the country [of Kaśmīra] a śramaṇa who was making a long journey in India in search of sacred scriptures and commentaries. The king presented me as a gift to the śramaṇa to carry the Buddhist scriptures for him to this country. Soon afterward I died and by the merit of having carried scriptures I was reborn a human being. With the surplus blessedness I was able

 become a monk at an early age. I worked hard to find liberation from the cycle of rebirth, without spending a single moment in idleness, until I attained the six supernatural powers and cut off the passions of the three realms. But my old habit of eating [like an elephant] was still as before, though I restricted myself to eating only one-third of my regular amount of food.”

When he said this the people did not believe him, so he rose into the air and entered the samādhi (concentrated trance) of firelight. Flames and smoke came from his body and he entered extinction while his remains dropped down, over which a stupa was built.

Going northwest from the royal city for over two hundred li, I reached Vikrītavana Monastery, where the śāstra master Pūrṇa (known as Yuanman in Chinese) composed the Exposition of the Abhidharma-śāstra.

Going west from the city for one hundred forty or fifty li, I reached the north of a great river at the south side of a mountain and came to a monastery of the Mahāsāṃghika school with more than a hundred monks. This was the place where the śāstra master Bodhila composed the Tattvasaṃcaya-śāstra of the Mahāsāṃghika school.

Going southwest from here for more than seven hundred li over mountains and across dangerous rivers, I reached the country of Parṇotsa (in the domain of North India). The country of Parṇotsa is more than two thousand li in circuit and has many mountains and rivers; it has narrow strips of cultivated land. The crops are sown in season and flowers and fruit are luxuriant. There is plenty of sugarcane but no grapes. Trees bearing such fruit as āmra (mango), uḍumbara (fig), moca (plantain), and so on have been planted by householders in the woods near their dwelling places, because the people enjoy the taste of these [variteies of] fruit. The climate is humid and hot and the people are bold and fiery by custom. Their garments are mostly made of cotton cloth. They are simple and straightforward by nature and believe in the Triple Gem. There are five monasteries, mostly in ruins. The country has no ruler and is a dependency of Kaśmīra. In the monastery to the north of the city there are a few monks. To the north of the monastery there is a stone stupa that often shows miracles.

From here going southeast for more than four hundred li, I reached the country of Rājapura (in the domain of North India). The country of Rājapura is over four thousand li in circuit; the capital city, which is more than ten li in circuit and has many hills and mounds around it, is a strong fortress. The valleys and plains are narrow and the soil is not productive. The native products and climate are the same as those of Parṇotsa. The people are bold and fiery by custom and are brave and valiant by nature. The country has no ruler and is a dependency of Kaśmīra. There are ten monasteries with few monks. There is one deva temple with many heretics.

From the country of Lampā up to this land all the inhabitants are coarse and vulgar in appearance and rustic and violent by nature. They speak unrefined dialects, have little courtesy, and lack the sense of righteousness. Their lands do not belong to India proper but are uncivilized frontier regions. From here proceeding southeast, descending from a mountain, crossing a river, and going for more than seven hundred li, I reached the country of Ṭakka (in the domain of North India).

End of Fascicle III of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

 

Fascicle IV

Fifteen Countries, fromṬakka to Kapitha

1. The Country of Ṭakka                             9. The Country of Śrughna

2. The Country of Cīnabhukti                      10. The Country of Matipura

3. The Country of Jālaṃdhara                     11. The Country of Brahmapura

4. The Country of Kulūta                             12. The Country of Goviṣāṇa

5. The Country of Śatadru                           13. The Country of Ahicchattra

6. The Country of Pāriyātra                         14. The Country of Vilaśāṇa

7. The Country of Mathurā                          15. The Country of Kapitha

8. The Country of Sthāneśvara

The country of Ṭakka is more than ten thousand li in circuit, with the Vipāśā 888b River at its east and the Indus River at its west; the capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The soil is good for growing nonluminous rice and there is plenty of winter wheat. The country produces gold, silver, brass, copper, and iron. The climate is hot and there is much violent wind. The people are rude and ill-tempered and their language is base and vulgar. They dress in white garments known as kauśeya (“wild silk”) clothes and “morning glow” (fine cotton) costume. Few of them believe in the buddha-dharma and most of them serve the deities. There are ten monasteries and several hundred deva temples. In this country there were formerly many almshouses to render help to the poor and needy or give them free food and medicine, and to provide travelers with meals so that they might dispel their fatigue.

Going fourteen or fifteen li to the southwest from the capital city, I reached the old city of Śākala. The city wall is dilapidated but the foundations are still tough and strong. It is over twenty li in circuit, inside which there is a smaller city, six or seven li in circuit, with rich and prosperous inhabitants. This was the original capital city of the country.

Several hundred years ago there was a king named Mahirakula (known as Dazu, “Great Clan,” in Chinese), who reigned in this city over all parts

of India. He was a man of talent and intelligence with a bold and furious nature. All the neighboring countries were his vassal states. Wishing to learn about the buddha-dharma in his leisure time, he ordered the monks to recommend a learned monk of virtue [to be his teacher]. But none of the monks dared accept the offer, as they had few desires in their quiet lives and did not seek fame or eminence, while those who were erudite and prominent feared his majesty.

At that time there was a man who had been a servant of the royal household but he had also been a monk for a long time. A man of refined speech and skillful in discussion, he was chosen by the monks to accept the king’s appointment. King Mahirakula said, “Out of respect for the buddha-dharma I tried to seek a monk of renown, and you now recommend a slave to hold discussions with me! I thought that there were many brilliant scholars in the community of monks but now I have come to know the actual condition. What is there for me to respect?” Then he issued an order to all the five parts of India to destroy whatever was connected with Buddhism and to expel all monks and not allow a single one to remain behind.

Now in the country of Magadha, King Bālāditya (known as Youri, “Morning Sun,” in Chinese) respected the buddha-dharma and loved his subjects, Because King Mahirakula employed cruel punishment and practiced tyranny, King Bālāditya defended his territory and refused to pay tribute to Mahirakula as his subordinate. King Mahirakula mobilized his troops to punish Bālāditya, but Bālāditya got news of the invasion and said to his ministers, “I have heard that the invaders are coming but I do not have the heart to injure the soldiers. May you officials and commoners spare me of guilt and allow my humble self to hide in the grassy marshland.” Having said so, he left the palace and went to the mountainous wilderness and several myriads of his admirers and followers accompanied him to take refuge on an island.

King Mahirakula then handed over his troops to his younger brother and sailed across the sea to attack the island. King Bālāditya guarded the strategic points and sent his light cavalrymen to lure the enemy to war. Amid the clamor of gongs and drums, Bālāditya’s soldiers, lying in ambush, suddenly appeared in all quarters and captured Mahirakula alive, who was then granted the favor of an audience. Ashamed of his misbehavior, King Mahirakula covered his face with his robes. King Bālāditya, seated on his lion seat and surrounded by his officials, ordered his attendants to tell Mahirakula, “Uncover your face; I wish to speak to you.” Mahirakula said in reply, “The vassal and the lord have changed positions. We now face each other in grudges and enmity, and since we are not on friendly terms what is the use of having a face-toface talk?” Despite repeated exhortation to [uncover his face] he would not do so. Then it was ordered to enumerate Mahirakula’s faults. “The Triple Gem is the field of blessedness, it is that on which all creatures of the four forms of birth can depend. If I had allowed you to act like a jackal or wolf you would have completely destroyed the causes of superior [good] deeds. Good luck is not on your side and so you have been captured by me. Your crimes are unpardonable and you must be sentenced to death.”

When the mother of King Bālāditya, who was a woman of erudition and good memory and an expert physiognomist, heard that Mahirakula was to be executed, she promptly told King Bālāditya, “I have heard that Mahirakula is a person with marvelous features and great wisdom. I wish to have a look at him.” King Bālāditya then had Mahirakula led to his mother’s palace. The queen mother said, “Alas, Mahirakula! You need not feel ashamed. The world is impermanent and honor and disgrace replace each other alternately. I am just as your mother and you, my son. You should remove the covering on your face so that we may talk face to face.” Mahirakula said, “I was the lord of a country hostile to you but I am now a captive at your court. I have demolished the achievements of my forerunners and brought my ancestral line to an end. Not only I am ashamed to face my forefathers but also I feel remorseful to my subjects. I am ashamed to see heaven and earth so I regretfully cover  my face with my clothes.” The king’s mother said, “The rise and fall of a nation depends on circumstances and existence or extinction is predestined by fate. If your mind looks at things with a view of equality, then both gain and loss are forgotten. If your mind is controlled by things, there will then arise feelings of calumny and commendation. You should believe in karmic retribution and change with the change of time. If you remove your covering and speak to me face to face, you may perhaps be able to keep your life.”

Mahirakula said gratefully, “I am a man of no talent and attained the throne by mere chance. Through my malpractice in political administration my royal lineage was brought to an end. Although I am under arrest I still cling to my life even for a short while. For your great courtesy I thank you face to face with profuse gratitude.” Then he removed his robes from his face. The king’s mother said to him, “Take good care of yourself and you will live to the natural end of your life.”

Then she told King Bālāditya, “It is laid down in the code of our ancestors that we should forgive other people’s faults and be kind to living beings. Although King Mahirakula has done evil for a long time his personal blessedness has not yet been exhausted. If you kill this man we will suffer famine for twelve years. He has prognostic signs of reinstatement but he will not be the king of a great country; he will occupy and possess a small country in the north.” Under the admonition of his compassionate mother, King Bālāditya took pity on the lord who had lost his kingdom; he married his young daughter to him and treated him with special hospitality. Mahirakula’s defeated soldiers were enrolled to reinforce his guards before [the former king] was sent out of the island.

In the meantime King Mahirakula’s younger brother had returned to his own country and established himself as king, so Mahirakula had lost the throne and had to flee and hide himself in the mountainous wilderness. He then went north to seek refuge in the country of Kaśmīra, and the king of Kaśmīra accorded him deep courtesy and conferred feudal estates upon him.

After some years had passed [Mahirakula], commanding the people of his fiefdom, killed the king of Kaśmīra on some pretext and proclaimed himself king. With the prestige of his success in the war he then attacked the country of Gandhāra in the west and he had his troops lie in ambush and killed the king. The members of the royal clan and all the ministers were slaughtered and one thousand six hundred stupas and monasteries were demolished. Apart from those killed in the war, there were nine koṭis of people who remained alive, and he intended to kill them all and not allow a single one to survive. At that time his assistants at court admonished him, saying, “Your Majesty’s prestige awed the strong enemies so much that their chiefs were executed even before the soldiers exchanged blows. What guilt have the common people committed? We wish to substitute our humble lives for their deaths.” The king said, “You believe in the buddha-dharma and think highly of future blessedness. Because you desire to achieve Buddhahood you widely propagate the Jātaka stories. Do you intend to hand down my evil repute to posterity? Go back to your seats and say no more!”

Three koṭis of people of the upper class were taken to the bank of the Indus River and put to death, three koṭis of people of the middle class were drowned in the river, and three koṭis of people of the lower class were granted to the soldiers [as slaves]. After that, Mahirakula carried the loot he had taken from the conquered country and marched home in triumph. But in less than a year’s time he died a sudden death, and at that time clouds and mist darkened 889b the sky and the earth quaked, with a violent wind blowing vehemently. A person who had realized sainthood had pity on him and remarked with a sigh of regret, “You unjustly killed innocent people and destroyed the buddha dharma. You will fall into the deepest hell of incessant suffering and rotate [in the wheel of rebirth] without end.”

In the old city of Śākala there is a monastery with more than one hundred monks, all of whom study Hinayana teachings. Formerly Vasubandhu Bodhisattva composed the Paramārtha-satya-śāstra at this monastery. Beside it is a stupa over two hundred feet high built at a place where the four past buddhas preached the Dharma. There are also the ruins of a place where the four buddhas used to walk up and down. Five or six li to the northwest of the monastery there is another stupa over two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka at a place where the four past buddhas had preached the Dharma.

Going for more than ten li to the northeast of the new capital city, I reached a stone stupa over two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka at a place where the Tathāgata had once halted halfway on his evangelical journey to the north. It is said in the Record of India that there are many relic bones preserved in the stupa and on fast days they often emit a light.

From here going eastward for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Cīnabhukti (in the domain of North India). The country of Cīnabhukti is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. It is abundant in cereals but fruit trees are scarce. The inhabitants are enrolled in household registration and live in peace and contentment. The state treasury has rich and profuse resources. The climate is temperate and warm and the people are timid and weak by custom. They study the theories of both the transcendental and the conventional truth in a comprehensive way and believe in heterodoxy as well as orthodoxy. There are ten monasteries and eight deva temples.

When King Kaniṣka occupied the throne his fame reached neighboring countries and his prestige covered distant lands with dissimilar customs. In fear of his influence, a vassal state to the west of the Yellow River [in China] sent a hostage to him. King Kaniṣka received the hostage with munificent hospitality, provided him with three residences for the three seasons of the year, and appointed four divisions of soldiers to serve as his guards. The winter residence of the hostage was in this district and was called Cīnabhukti (known as Hanfeng, “China Fief,” in Chinese), which was also the name of the country where he had sojourned.

In this district, and beyond it in the various parts of India, there had been no pears or peaches; it was the hostage who first planted them. Thus peaches are called cīnanī (“brought from China”) and pears are called cīnarājaputra (“Chinese prince”). Therefore the people of this country have a deep respect for the East Land and they often said to one another, pointing at me, “This is a man from the land of our former king.”

Going to the northeast for more than five hundred li from the capital city, I reached Tamasāvana-saṃghārāma (known as Anlin, “Dark Forest,” in Chinese), where there are more than three hundred monks who study the teachings

of the Sarvāstivāda school. They behave in a solemn and respectful manner with pure and high virtues. They are particularly learned in the doctrines of the Hinayana schools. All the thousand buddhas of the bhadrakalpa will hold meetings of heavenly and human beings at this place to speak on the profound and marvelous Dharma. In the three-hundredth year after the nirvana of Śākya Tathāgata, the śāstra master Kātyāyana (wrongly transcribed as Jiazhanyan in olden times) composed the Abhidharma-jñāna-prasthānaśāstra at this monastery.

Inside Dark Forest Monastery there is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Beside it are the ruins of places where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. Small stupas and large caves, of which the number is unknown, lie close together. They were built since the beginning of the present kalpa, when arhats of different stages passed away at this place, but I cannot give a full description of these events. Their holy tooth relics are still kept there. The range of hills that encircles the monastery is over twenty li in circuit. There are hundreds and thousands of stupas containing the Buddha’s relic bones, built so closely together that their shadows touch one another.

Going northeast from here for more than one hundred forty or fifty li, I reached the country of Jālaṃdhara (in the domain of North India). The country of Jālaṃdhara is over one thousand li from east to west and more than eight hundred li from south to north; the capital city is twelve or thirteen li in circuit. It yields cereals and has plenty of nonluminous rice. The trees in the forests are luxuriant and flowers and fruit are abundant. The climate is temperate and warm and the people are violent and indomitable by custom and ugly in appearance, but all their households are wealthy. There are over fifty monasteries with more than two thousand monks, who have specialized knowledge of both Mahayana and Hinayana teachings. There are three deva temples with over five hundred heretics, who all smear their bodies with ashes.

A previous king of this country had venerated heretics, but he later met an arhat from whom he heard the Dharma and he came to understand and believe in it. The king of Central India, appreciating his sincere faith, empowered him to be the sole controller of all affairs connected with the Triple Gem in all of the five parts of India. [The king of Jālaṃdhara] made no distinction between different regions and, forgetting his personal likes and dislikes, he supervised all the monks, skillfully pointing out even the most minute of their good and evil deeds. Therefore virtuous monks of good repute were highly respected, while those who violated the disciplinary rules were denounced and punished. At all sacred sites he erected memorial buildings, either stupas or monasteries, which were found everywhere in India.

Going from here to the northeast for more than seven hundred li over precipitous ranges, through deep valleys, and along perilous paths, and trudging on dangerous tracks, I reached the country of Kulūta (in the domain of North India). The country of Kulūta is more than three thousand li in circuit, surrounded by mountains, and the capital city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. The soil is fertile and cereals are sown and planted in season. Flowers and fruit are abundant and various kinds of grasses and trees are luxuriant. As it borders the Snow Mountains, it is rich in precious medicinal herbs. It yields gold, silver, red copper, crystal, and brass. The climate is somewhat cold but 890a there is little snow or frost. The people have ugly features and suffer from

goiter as well as edema. They are violent and furious by nature and uphold the spirit of bravery. There are more than twenty monasteries with over one thousand monks, most of whom study Mahayana teachings; a few of them practice the tenets of various [Hinayana] schools. There are fifteen deva temples with heretics living together. On the steep mountains there are caves situated in connection with one another, which were either the lodgings of arhats or the abodes of ṛṣis.

In this country there is a stupa built by King Aśoka in memory of the event of the Tathāgata coming to this place in olden times to preach the Dharma for the conversion of the people.

From here the road, leading to the north for one thousand and eight or nine hundred li by perilous paths and over mountains and valleys, takes one to the country of Lāhul. Going further to the north over two thousand li along a route full of difficulties and obstacles, in cold winds and wafting snowflakes, one could reach the country of Marsa (also known as the country of Sanbohe). From the country of Kulūta going south for more than seven hundred li over a great mountain across a big river, I reached the country of Śatadru (in the domain of North India). The country of Śatadru is more than two thousand li in circuit, bordering on a big river in the west. The capital city is seventeen or eighteen li in circuit. Cereals are grown in abundance and fruit is plentiful. It produces much gold and silver and also yields pearls. The people’s dress and utensils are bright and clean and their clothes are extravagant and gorgeous. The climate is hot and the people are honest and amiable by custom. Their disposition is kind and gentle and the superior and inferior are in proper order. They earnestly believe in the buddha-dharma with a true attitude of respect. Within and outside the royal city there are ten monasteries, which are in desolation and have few monks. Three or four li to the southeast of the city there is a stupa over two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Beside it are the ruins of places where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down.

Going from here to the southwest for over eight hundred li, I reached the country of Pāriyātra (in the domain of Central India). The country of Pāriyātra is more than three thousand li in circuit and the capital city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. It yields cereals and winter wheat in abundance and has a particular species of rice that is ready for harvest sixty days after planting. It has plenty of cattle and sheep but flowers and fruit are scarce. The climate is hot and the people are violent and furious by custom. They do not esteem learning and they profess false teachings. The king, a descendant of the vaiśya caste, is a man of courage and military skills. There are eight monasteries standing in an extremely ruinous condition, with a few monks who study the teachings of the Hinayana schools. There are over ten deva temples with more than a thousand devotees.

Going from here to the east for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Mathurā (in the domain of Central India). The country of Mathurā is more than five thousand li in circuit and the capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The land is fertile and agriculture is the main occupation. Mango trees are grown by the people in their homesteads. There are two species of this fruit, one is small and turns yellow when ripe; the other large and always remains 890b green. The country produces fine kapok cloth and gold. The climate is hot and the people are good and genial by custom. They like to work for the happiness of the departed, they respect the virtuous, and they advocate learning. There are over twenty monasteries with more than two thousand monks who study the teachings of both the Mahayana and Hinayana schools. There are five deva temples where heretics live together. There are three stupas, all built by King Aśoka, and numerous traces left by the four past buddhas.

There are also stupas containing the relic bones of the holy disciples of Śākya Tathāgata, such as Śāriputra (formerly known as Shelizi or Shelifu in wrongly abbreviated forms), Maudgalyāyana (formerly known as Mujianlian erroneously), Pūrṇamaitrāyaṇīputra (known as Mancizi, “Full Compassion Son,” in Chinese, and formerly transcribed in a wrongly abbreviated form as Midouluonizi), Upāli, Ānanda, and Rāhula (formerly known as Luohou or Louyun, both being erroneous and abbreviated forms). There are stupas for such bodhisattvas as Mañjuśrī (known as Miaojixiang, “Wonderful Auspices,” in Chinese, formerly known as Rushou, Wenshushili, or Manshushili and wrongly translated as “Wonderful Virtue”), and others.

In the three fast months of the year and on each of the six fast days of the month, the monks vie with their friends and acquaintances to carry ritual implements and many rare and strange articles to offer to the images of their particular patrons. Those who study the Abhidharma make offerings to Śāriputra, those who practice meditation make offerings to Maudgalyāyana, the sutra reciters to Pūrṇamaitrāyaṇīputra, the Vinaya students to Upāli, the bhikṣuṇīs to Ānanda, the śrāmaṇeras to Rāhula, and the Mahayana students to the various bodhisattvas. On the day offerings to the various stupas are to be made in competition pearled banners are displayed and bejeweled canopies arranged in rows; the smoke of incense pervades the air like clouds and flowers are scattered in such abundance that they obscure the sun and moon and cause great tumult in the valleys. The king and his ministers perform good deeds as their bound duty.

Going east for five or six li from the city I came to a hill monastery, of which the chambers are carved on the precipice of a mountain, with an entrance facing the valley. It was built by Venerable Upagupta (known as Jinhu, “Near Protection,” in Chinese). In the monastery is a stupa preserving the fingernails of the Tathāgata.

On the steep rock to the north of the [hill] monastery there is a cave more than twenty feet in height and over thirty feet in breadth. Fine chips four inches long [used as counters] are accumulated in the cave. When Venerable Upagupta was preaching the Dharma to convert the people every married couple that attained athwartship put down a counter here, but single members of a family were not counted even though they had become arhats.

Going twenty-four or five li to the southeast from the cave I came to a

arge dried-up pond with a stupa beside it. Formerly when the Tathāgata was once going across this place, a monkey offered him some honey. The Buddha had it mixed with water and distributed the beverage to the assembly of monks. The monkey was so delighted that it gamboled with joy, fell into a pit, and died. By the merits of this offering it was reborn as a human being.

Not far away to the north of the [dried-up] pond there is a large wood in which are traces left by the four past buddhas when they walked up and down. Beside it are the places where the one thousand two hundred and fifty great arhats, Śāriputra, Maudgalyāyana, and so on, practiced meditation and stupas have been built to mark the traces. When the Tathāgata was living in the world he frequently visited this country, and trees have been planted at the places where he preached the Dharma.

From here going to the northeast for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Sthāneśvara (in the domain of Central India). The country of Sthāneśvara is more than seven thousand li in circuit; the capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The land is fertile and crops grow in abundance. The climate is hot and the people are unkind and ignoble by custom. The householders are wealthy and vie with each other in showing extravagance. The people are learned in art of magic and they highly esteem unusual capabilities. Most of them engage in trade in pursuit of profit, while a few are farmers. Exceptional goods of various places are collected in this country. There are three monasteries with over seven hundred monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Hinayana schools. Deva temples amount to over one hundred and have numerous heretics.

Around the great city within a radius of two hundred li, the district is called by the people of the country the Land of Blessedness. I heard some old people say that the five parts of India were formerly ruled separately by two kings. Their territories were adjacent to each other and the two kings carried out mutual invasions in endless wars. Then they agreed to fight a final battle to see who would be the master, so as to establish peace for their subjects. But all the common people bore a grudge against war and would not obey the kings’ orders [to fight]. Thinking that it was difficult to discuss the matter with his subjects, the king [of Sthāneśvara] considered that the gods might be able to arouse his people and their power might help him achieve his exploits. There was then a brahman who was known for his high talents. [The king] secretly sent him a roll of silk and invited him to the back chambers of the palace to compose a Dharma book, which was then hidden in a rock cave. After a long lapse of many years, the cave was covered over by the trees growing at the place.

One day at an audience in the morning, the king said to his ministers, “As a man of no virtue I have unworthily occupied the throne. The Lord of Heaven has favored me with a dream in which he granted me a spiritual book, which is now hidden under a certain peak on a certain mountain.” Then he gave orders to search for the book and, to the delight of the ministers as well as the pleasure of the common people, the book was found in a forest on a mountain. The contents of the book were made known to all people far and near. It reads briefly as follows:

The [wheel of] life and death is endless and rotates incessantly without limit. Those who are submerged in the sea of rebirth cannot save themselves. I have a wonderful device to release you from all kinds of suffering. The region two hundred li wide around the royal city is the Land of Blessedness, handed down by former kings from generation to generation, but in

the long lapse of time the inscriptions have been obliterated. As the people are not aware of the fact they are sunk in the sea of suffering. What would people say if we failed to rescue those who are being drowned? You people will be reborn among humans if you die fighting your enemies, and if you slaughter many innocent people you will enjoy happiness in heaven. Obedient grandsons and filial sons serving their parents in touring this region will gain infinite blessedness. Why should you lose the chance to obtain much blessedness by performing a small meritorious deed? Once the human body is lost you will suffer in the darkness of the three evil states of rebirth. Therefore every one of you should cultivate good karma.

Thereafter all the people practiced the military arts and looked upon death

as going home.

The king then ordered that brave and high-spirited warriors be enlisted and in the war that took place between the two counties the numerous corpses of those killed on the battlefield piled up high, so that even now skeletons are scattered about in the wilderness. Because this happened in ancient times the bodies of the fighters were very large in size. This region is known as the Land of Blessedness by tradition of the country.

Four or five li to the northwest of the city is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. The bricks are all yellowish-red in color, very lustrous and clean. It contains one sheng of the Tathāgata’s relic bones, which often emit a light with many divine manifestations.

Going south for over one hundred li from the city, I came to Govinda Monastery, which consists of storied pavilions with the ridges of the roofs connected together, and terraces of many tiers standing one higher than another. The monks lead a pure and strict life and comport themselves in a calm and refined manner.

From here going northeast for more than four hundred li, I reached the country of Śrughna (in the domain of Central India). The country of Śrughna is more than six thousand li in circuit, bordering the Ganges River on the east, with big mountains lying at its back in the north and the Yamunā River flowing through the middle of its territory. The capital city is over twenty li in circuit and borders the Yamunā River on the east. Although the city is in a desolate condition the foundations are still strong. The native products and customs and habits are the same as in the country of Sthāneśvara. The people are honest by nature and believe in heretical theories. They esteem the learning of arts and crafts and advocate the cultivation of blessedness and wisdom. There are five monasteries with over one thousand monks, most of whom study Hinayana teachings, but a few learn the tenets of other schools. They discuss the subtle teachings and deliberate on the abstruse doctrines. Talented scholars of different places come to hold discussions with them in order to resolve their doubts. There are one hundred deva temples with numerous heretics.

To the southeast of the great city, outside the eastern gate of a big monastery at the west of the Yamunā River, there is a stupa built by King Aśoka at a place where the Tathāgata once preached the Dharma to convert the people in olden times. Beside it another stupa contains hair and fingernail relics of the Tathāgata. Hair and fingernail relics of Śāriputra, Maudgalyāyana, and other arhats are preserved in several tens of stupas built around here. After the nirvana of the Tathāgata, the country was led astray by heretics and the people abandoned the right views. The five monasteries now in existence were built by foreign śāstra masters who had defeated the heretics and brahmans in debates at the sites where the monasteries were subsequently built.

Going east from the Yamunā River for over eight hundred li, I came to the Ganges River, the source of which is three or four li wide flowing southeast to the sea; it is over ten li at its mouth. The water is dark blue in color with great waves rising in it. Although there are many strange monsters [in the river], they do not harm people. The water is sweet and fine grains of sand come down with the current. According to local popular records, this river is known as the Water of Blessedness and one’s accumulated sins can be expiated by taking a bath in it. Those who drown themselves in the river will be reborn in heaven to enjoy happiness, and a recently deceased person whose corpse is thrown into the river will not fall into the evil states of existence in his next rebirth. By raising waves and blockading the current the souls of the dead will be saved.

Deva Bodhisattva of the country of Siṃhala was a man learned in the theory of reality; he understood the nature of all dharmas. Having pity for ignorant people, he came here to enlighten them. At the time when all the people, men and women, old and young, assembled at the banks of the river, raised waves, and blockaded the current, Deva Bodhisattva mingled with them to draw up the water and lowered his head to push the current in the reverse direction, counter to the efforts of the other people. A heretic said to him, “Why are you doing it in a strange way?” Deva Bodhisattva said, “My parents and other kinsfolk are in the country of Siṃhala and I fear that they may be suffering from hunger and thirst. So I am trying to send this water from afar to save them.” The heretic said, “You are mistaken. You did not consider the matter well and behaved erroneously. Your home country is far away, separated [from here] by big mountains and rivers. To agitate the water here with the hope of saving those who are hungry there is like someone who goes backward in order to advance. This is unthinkable !” Deva Bodhisattva said, “If sinners in the nether world can be benefited by this water, why could it not also save the people separated [from here] by mountains and rivers?” The heretics then realized their fault and acknowledged defeat. They renounced their erroneous views, accepted the right Dharma, corrected their mistakes, and made a fresh start by wishing to listen to the instructions [of Deva Bodhisattva].

Crossing the river to the east bank I reached the country of Matipura (in the domain of Central India). The country of Matipura is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It yields rice and wheat and has plenty of flowers and fruit. The climate is temperate and the people are honest by custom. They esteem the learning of arts and crafts and are learned in the art of sorcery. Half of the population believes in heterodox religions and the other half in the right teachings [of Buddhism]. The king is a śūdra by caste who does not believe in the buddha-dharma but worships the devas. There are over ten monasteries with more than eight hundred monks, most of whom study the teachings of the Sarvāstivāda school of Hinayana Buddhism. There are over fifty deva temples where heretics live together.

Four or five li to the south of the great city is a small monastery with over fifty monks. Formerly the śāstra master Guṇaprabha (known as Deguang, “Virtue Light,” in Chinese) composed at this place the Tattva-satya-śāstra and other treatises, totaling over one hundred books. The śāstra master was eminently smart when he was young and when he had grown up he became an intelligent, vastly learned, and versatile scholar, possessing a good memory 891c and erudite learning. At first Guṇaprabha studied Mahayana teachings but before he could thoroughly understand these profound teachings he came upon the Vibhāṣā-śāstra, and he changed his course of study and devoted himself to learning Hinayana theories. He wrote several tens of treatises to refute the principles of the Mahayana teachings and to promote Hinayana theories. He also wrote several tens of secular books to denounce the classical works written by his predecessors. He pondered the Buddhist scriptures and found more than ten dubious points that he could not solve and despite his studies for a long time his doubts were not resolved.

There was then the arhat Devasena (known as Tianjun, “Heavenly Army,” in Chinese), who used to frequent Tuṣita Heaven [where Maitreya Bodhisattva resided]. Guṇaprabha wished to see Maitreya to seek instructions for the solution of his doubts and Devasena brought him to the heavenly palace by his supernatural powers. Upon seeing Maitreya, [Guṇaprabha] would not salute him in the proper way. Devasena said to him, “Maitreya Bodhisattva is next only to the Buddha in position. Why are you so conceited as to not worship him? Since you desire to study under his guidance how can you be so unruly toward him?” Guṇaprabha said in reply, “What you, Venerable Sir, have said is truly a good admonition but I am a fully ordained bhikkhu, a homeless disciple, while Maitreya Bodhisattva is enjoying the bliss of heaven and is not a renunciant monk. I am afraid that it is unbefitting of me to worship him.” The bodhisattva, knowing that [Guṇaprabha’s] conceited mind was so stubborn that he was not a competent person to hear the Dharma, would not resolve his doubts, even though Guṇaprabha came up to heaven three times. [Guṇa prabha] said to Devasena that he wished to see [Maitreya] Bodhisattva once more so as to worship him but Devasena detested his conceit and contemptuously ignored his request. Having not satisfied his wish, Guṇaprabha retired to a forest, holding a grudge, to practice meditation for the development of supernatural powers but as he did not eliminate his conceit he could not attain sainthood.

Three or four li to the north of Guṇaprabha’s monastery there is a big monastery with more than two hundred monks, all of whom study Hinayana teachings. This is the place where the śāstra master Saṃghabhadra passed away. A native of the country of Kaśmīra, the śāstra master was an intelligent and learned man who enjoyed a good reputation from the time of his youth and made a profound study of the Vibhāṣā-śāstra of the Sarvāstivāda school.

There was then Vasubandhu Bodhisattva, whose mind was fixed on the abstruse Way, seeking implications beyond words. In order to refute the Vibhā ṣā masters he composed the Abhidharmakośa-śāstra, a work written in fine and dexterous language that explains the meanings in a pure and sublime manner. When Saṃghabhadra read this work he made up his mind to probe into its contents. After making a profound study of the work for twelve years, he composed the Kośakarakā-śāstra in twenty-five thousand stanzas and eight hundred thousand words. This book consists of words of far-reaching import, seeking the depths of abstruse and subtle theories. He said to his disciples, “With my outstanding competence and correct reasoning, go and refute Vasubandhu to frustrate his sharpness and break the old man’s monopoly on eminent fame.” Three or four of his prominent disciples took Saṃgha bhadra’s treatise and went to visit Vasubandhu.

At that time Vasubandhu was in Śākula City in the country of Ṭakka.

When the news arrived that Saṃghabhadra was coming Vasubandhu packed up his things. His bewildered disciples came forward to remonstrate with him, saying, “Great Master, your virtue surpasses that of former sages and your unique fame spreads far in the present world. All scholars far and near have great esteem for you. Why are you so alarmed at the news of Saṃghabhadra’s arrival? Even if he is coming to humiliate us we will boldly face him.” Vasubandhu said, “It is not because I wish to avoid this man that I am going far away. Looking around this country, I find no one skillful and competent enough to decide the case. Saṃghabhadra is a young man, eloquent in debate, while I am advanced in years and could not hold a discussion with him. I wish to defeat his heterodox views with one word and I intend to lure him to Central India to meet venerable and learned scholars who can discern truth from falsehood and find out right and wrong.” He then asked his companion to carry his bookcase for him and soon started on the long journey.

The śāstra master Saṃghabhadra arrived at the monastery one day after [Vasubandhu’s departure] and suddenly found himself short of breath. So he wrote a letter of apology to Vasubandhu, in which he said, “After the nirvana of the Tathāgata his disciples split into different sects and schools, each propagating his own theories in specific ways. They defended those who belonged to their own sects and despised those who were affiliated with other groups. Being an ignorant man of shallow learning, I had the opportunity to pursue knowledge under my teachers and read the Abhidharmakośa-śāstra composed by you for the refutation of the principles of the Vibhāṣā masters. I overrated my abilities and worked for many years on a treatise, [the Kośakarakā-śāstra,] with the intention of making it a support for the correct theories. My scheme was great but my wisdom too small, and the time of my death is approaching. You are a bodhisattva who expounds the subtle sayings and propagates the supreme truth. I would be happy if you would not deny what opinions I hold so that my treatise might be preserved. Then I can die without regret.”

He selected some of his disciples who were eloquent in debate and said to them, “I am really a man of the younger generation and despised the sages of older times. What can I do, if such is my fate? I shall be dying soon. You should take this letter together with my treatise to apologize to that bodhisattva and show repentance on my behalf.” As soon as he finished these words, he passed away.

His disciples took the letter and went to Vasubandhu, and said to him, “Our teacher Saṃghabhadra has passed away. He left word for us to send this letter to express his self-reproach and apologize to you for his mistakes, hoping that you would not bring down his reputation, though this may be beyond our expectation.”

Vasubandhu Bodhisattva read the letter and looked over the treatise for a long while before he spoke to the disciples, saying, “The śāstra master Saṃgha bhadra was a young scholar of intelligence. In his treatise the theories are not sufficiently elucidated but his phraseology is sharp enough. If I wish to confute this treatise it would be as easy as pointing at my palm. Considering the he request made on his deathbed, and having noticed the words he spoke after realizing the difficulties in his attempt, I shall comply, out of the principle of righteousness, with his long-cherished ambition; moreover, the views of my school are also expounded in his treatise.” Then he changed the title of the treatise to the Nyāyānusāra-śāstra.

[Vasubandhu’s] disciples remonstrated with him, saying, “Before Saṃgha badra’s death, you, a great teacher, went far away from him and now, after having obtained his treatise, you changed its title. How will any of your disciples be able to bear the shame?” In order to clear up their doubt Vasubandhu Bodhisattva uttered the following stanza:

When a king of lions

                     Runs away from a pig,

The wise should know Which is the winner in strength.

After Saṃghabhadra’s death his body was cremated and his ashes were preserved in a stupa, which is still in existence, built in a mango grove over two hundred paces to the northwest of the monastery.

Beside the mango grove there is a stupa containing the remains of śāstra master Vimalamitra (known as Wugouyou, “Stainless Friend,” in Chinese). This śāstra master was a native of the country of Kaśmīra and became a monk of the Sarvāstivāda school. He was widely learned in various scriptures and studied the treatises of diverse sects, and he traveled throughout the five parts of India to learn the abstruse texts of the Tripiṭaka. After he had gained fame and completed his studies he started on his homeward journey, and on the way he came across the stupa of Saṃghabhadra. He patted the stupa and said with a sigh, “You, śāstra master, were a man of magnanimity and eminence and extolled the great teachings. Why did you live such a short life and die at the time when you were just about to defeat the heterodox schools and establish your own sect? I, Vimalamitra, am a man of shallow learning, and although we have lived in different times I admire your righteousness and have always remembered your virtue for many years. Vasubandhu is dead but his theories are still in vogue. I shall exhaust my knowledge to write treatises for all the scholars in Jambudvīpa to efface the fame of the Mahayana teachings and the name of Vasubandhu. This will be an unending task but I shall do my best to fulfill it.”

After having said these words, [Vimalamitra] suddenly became delirious and five tongues stuck out of his mouth, which oozed hot blood. Knowing that he would surely die he wrote a letter of repentance, saying, “The Mahayana doctrines are the ultimate truth of the buddha-dharma, which is beyond the scope of both conception and substance and has deep and abstruse principles. I have been so imprudent as to denounce an advanced teacher in my ignorance. Karmic retribution is apparent and it is just and right that I should lose my life. I venture to advise my fellow students to consider me as an example. Be careful in making your aspirations and do not cherish doubt.”

At the moment of Vimalamitra’s death the earth quaked and a pit formed at the place where he died. His traveling companions cremated his corpse and collected the ashes, over which a memorial was built. At that time an arhat witnessed the event and said with a sigh, “What a pity, how sorrowful it is! This śāstra master waywardly grasped his own views and vilified the Mahayana doctrines, and he fell into the hell of incessant suffering.”

In the northwest of this country of [Matipura], on the east bank of the Ganges, is the city of Mayūra, which is more than twenty li in circuit and has a dense population; there are many watercourses that interflow with one another. It produces brass, crystal, and valuable articles. Not far away from the city on the bank of the Ganges River is a great deva temple with many miraculous manifestations. Inside the shrine compound is a pond whose banks are inlaid with slabs of stone. Water is diverted from the Ganges to replenish the pond. People from all the five parts of India call it the Gate of the Ganges and it is a place to perform meritorious deeds and expiate sins. There are always hundreds and thousands of people flocking from afar to bathe themselves in the pond. Philanthropic kings have constructed almshouses to provide 892c isolated, solitary, and needy people with free food and medical service. From here going north for more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Brahmapura (in the domain of North India). The country of Brahmapura, which is over four thousand li in circuit, is surrounded by mountains on all four sides and the capital city is more than twenty li in circuit. It is densely populated and the inhabitants are rich and prosperous. The land is fertile and crops are sown and reaped in a timely manner. It yields brass and crystal and the climate is somewhat cold. The people are rude and violent by custom and few of them learn arts and crafts; the majority engages in business to gain profits. They believe in both heterodox and orthodox teachings. There are five monasteries with a few monks, and more than ten deva temples with heretics living together.

In the Great Snow Mountains to the north of this country is the country of Suvarṇagotra (known as Jinshi, “Gold Clan,” in Chinese). It produces gold of the best quality, hence the name of the country. It is long from east to west and narrow from south to north. This is what is known as the Eastern Woman’s Country, as it is has been ruled from generation to generation by a woman. Her husband is the king but he does not administer state affairs. The men’s only duties are is to serve in the army and cultivate the fields. The soil is good for growing winter wheat and many sheep and horses are reared. The climate is severely cold and the people are violent by nature. In the east it borders the country of Tubo, in the north it adjoins the country of Khotan, and in the west it abuts the country of Sanbohe.

Going from Matipura to the southeast for more than four hundred li, I reached the country of Goviṣāṇa (in the domain of Central India). The country of Goviṣāṇa is over two thousand li in circuit and the capital city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. Lofty mountains serve as impregnable barriers to the city and the inhabitants are rich and prosperous. Flowery woods and ponds and pools are to be seen everywhere, one after the other. The climate and natural products are the same as in the country of Matipura. The people are sincere and honest by custom and they are assiduous in learning and fond of doing meritorious works. Most of them believe in heterodox teachings, seeking happiness in the present life. There are two monasteries with over one hundred monks, all of whom study the Hinayana teachings. There are more than thirty deva temples where heretics live together.

In an old monastery beside the capital city there is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Formerly the Tathāgata once preached on the various principles of the Dharma at this place for one month. Beside it there are traces where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. Alongside the traces there are two stupas, each over ten feet high, containing hair and fingernail relics of the Tathāgata.

Going from here to the southeast for more than four hundred li, I reached the country of Ahicchattra (in the domain of Central India). The country of Ahicchattra is more than three thousand li in circuit and the capital city, which is built upon strongly fortified positions, is seventeen or eighteen li in circuit. The country produces rice and wheat and has many woods and springs. The climate is mild and pleasant and the people are sincere and honest by custom. They take delight in studying the Way and are diligent in learning, and they possess much talent and extensive knowledge. There are over ten monasteries with more than one thousand monks, who study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya sect of the Hinayana school. There are nine deva 893a temples with more than three hundred followers who are worshipers of Īśvara and smear themselves with ashes.

Beside a dragon pond outside the city there is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Formerly the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for the dragon of this place for seven days. Beside it there are four smaller stupas built at places where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down.

From here going east for two hundred sixty or seventy li and crossing the Ganges River to the south, I reached the country of Vilaśāṇa (in the domain of Central India). The country of Vilaśāṇa is more than two thousand li in circuit and the capital city is over ten li in circuit. The climate and natural products are the same as in the country of Ahicchattra. The people are fierce and violent by custom but they have an inclination for learning. They believe in heretical theories; only a few of them venerate the buddha-dharma. There are two monasteries with three hundred monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings. There are five deva temples, and heretics live together.

In an old monastery inside the capital city there is a stupa whose base, though dilapidated, remains over one hundred feet in height. It was built by King Aśoka at the place where the Tathāgata preached the Skandha-dhātuāyatana-sūtra for seven days. Beside it are traces where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down.

From here going southeast for more than two hundred li, I reached the country of Kapitha (formerly known as the country of Sengjiashe, in the domain of Central India). The country of Kapitha is more than two thousand li in circuit and the capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The climate and natural products are the same as in the country of Vilaśāṇa. The people are honest and amiable by custom and most of them learn handicrafts. There are four monasteries with over one thousand monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Samṃitīya sect of the Hinayana school. There are ten deva temples where heretics live together, all of whom serve and worship Īśvara.

Over twenty li to the west of the city there is a large, beautifully constructed monastery consisting of many lofty and spacious buildings adorned with exquisite carvings. The holy images and statues are made in a most stately manner. There are several hundred monks who study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya sect; several myriads of laypeople, attendants of the monks, live in their houses beside the monastery.

Inside the great wall of the monastery there are three stairways [made of precious substances] standing in a row from south to north and sloping down to the east. This was the place where the Tathāgata descended from Trayastriṃśa Heaven and returned to earth. Formerly the Tathāgata set out from Jetavana Garden and ascended to Devapura (the residence of Indra); he stayed in the Hall of the Good Dharma, where he preached the Dharma for his mother. At the end of three months he wished to descend, so Indra employed his divine power to construct the stairways. The middle flight of stairs was made of gold, the left one of crystal, and the right one of silver. The Tathāgata started from the Hall of the Good Dharma and, accompanied by a multitude of heavenly beings, he walked down the middle flight of stairs. Brahmā,

holding a white fly-whisk, walked down the silver stairs, attending the Buddha at his right, while Indra, carrying a precious canopy, walked down the crystal stairs, attending the Buddha at his left. The multitude of heavenly beings flying high in the air scattered flowers and praised the virtues of the Buddha.

A few hundred years ago the stairways were still there but they have now completely sunk down. The kings of various countries, regretting that they had not seen the holy structures, piled up bricks and stones on the old base, ornamented with gems and jewels, to the height of seventy feet to imitate the original precious stairways. A shrine room was built on top with a stone image of the Buddha installed in it, while on the left and right flights of stairs there are the statues of Indra and Brahmā respectively, in the forms of their original postures, as if they were walking down. Beside the stairs is a stone pillar more than seventy feet high erected by King Aśoka. Dark purple in color, it is made of lustrous hard stone with a fine grain and on top there is a carved lion crouching and facing toward the stairs. On the surface all around the pillar various kinds of strange figures are carved, which appear in a shadowy way to viewers according to their good or evil deeds.

Not far away from the precious stairs is a stupa built at a place where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down, and beside it is another stupa built at a place where the Tathāgata bathed. The temple beside the stupa was built where the Tathāgata sat in meditation. Beside the temple there is a great stone terrace, fifty paces long and seven feet high, at the place where the Tathāgata walked up and down. The footprints have the shapes of lotus flowers. On the left and right sides of the terrace there are two small stupas, one built by Indra and the other by Brahmā.

In front of the stupas built by Indra and Brahmā is the place where the bhikṣuṇī Utpalavarṇā, wishing to be the first one to see the Buddha, appeared in the form of a universal monarch (cakravartin). When the Tathāgata returned from Devapura to Jambudvīpa, Subhūti (known as Shanxian, “Good Manifestation,” in Chinese, formerly transcribed as Xufuti or Xuputi and translated as “Good Auspices,” all erroneously) was sitting in meditation in a cave. He reflected, “Now the Buddha, attended by human and heavenly beings, is returning to earth. Being such as I am, what should I do? I have heard the Buddha say that knowing the emptiness of all things and understanding the nature of all things are to see the Buddha’s spiritual body with the eye of wisdom.”

At that time the bhikṣuṇī Utpalavarṇā, wishing to be the first to see the Buddha, appeared in the form of a universal monarch accompanied by attendants holding the seven kinds of precious objects and guarded by the four divisions of troops. When she came to the place of the Tathāgata she resumed the form of a bhikṣuṇī. The Tathāgata told her, “You are not the first person to see me. Subhūti, who has insight into the emptiness of all things, has already seen my spiritual body.”

Within the enclosure of the holy traces divine manifestations occurred in succession. To the southeast of the great stupa there is a pond in which a dragon always protected the holy traces, and under its divine protection they were not easily violated. The step and pond became dilapidated through erosion over time but no human effort could destroy them.

From here going southeast for less than two hundred li, I reached the country of Kanyākubja (known as Qunüchengguo, “Country of Hunchbacked Maidens,” in the domain of Central India).

End of Fascicle IV of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

 

Fascicle V

Six Countries, from Kanyākubjato Viṣaka

1. The Country of Kanyākubja                    4. The Country of Prayāga

2. The Country of Ayodhyā                         5. The Country of Kauśāmbī

3. The Country of Ayamukha                      6. The Country of Viṣaka

The country of Kanyākubja is more than four thousand li in circuit and the 893c capital city, with the Ganges River at the west, is over twenty li in length and four or five li in breadth. The city wall and moat are strongly built and terraces and pavilions are to be seen everywhere. Flowery woods are brilliant in color and the ponds are filled with transparent water, like a mirror. Rare goods of different places are collected here. The inhabitants live happily in abundance and their families are rich and prosperous. There are many kinds of flowers and fruit and crops are sown and reaped in good time. The climate is mild and pleasant and the people are simple and honest by custom. Their features are handsome and graceful and their clothes and adornments are bright and resplendent. They earnestly study arts and literature and talk in a lucid and far-sighted manner. Heterodoxy and orthodoxy are each each by half of the population and both Mahayana and Hinayana teachings are studied by the people. There are more than two hundred deva temples with several thousand heretics.

In the age when the human life span was very long, the old capital city of the country of Kanyākubja was called Kusumapura (known as Huagong, “Flowery Palace,” in Chinese). The king, named Brahmadatta, was a person endowed with both bliss and wisdom; he was well versed in literature and the arts of war. His prestige kept Jambudvīpa in awe of him and his renown spread to the neighboring countries. He had one thousand sons, all of whom possessed the qualities of wisdom and bravery as well as magnanimity and resoluteness. He also had one thousand daughters who were beautiful in features and had refined manners.

There was then a risk (sage) who lived by the banks of the Ganges. He concentrated his mind in meditation for several myriads of years and his form became like that of a dried-up tree. Some migratory birds alighted upon him and dropped a fruit of the nyagrodha (banyan) tree on his shoulder. With the passage of many hot and cold seasons the fruit grew into a big tree with branches growing downward to form a vault. After many years the risk rose from his meditation and wished to shake off the tree but he feared that he might overturn the nests of the birds. The people appreciated his virtue and called him the Ṛṣi of the Big Tree.

One day, as the risk was enjoying the view of the riverside, he made a pleasure trip into the dense wood, where he saw the king’s daughters playing and frolicking merrily. His sexual passion was aroused and his mind became stained. So he went to Kusumapura to ask to marry one of the king’s daughters. On hearing of the ṛṣi’s arrival, the king received him in person and greeted him, saying, “As Your Reverence lives outside the scope of the human world,

why do you condescend to pay me a visit?” The risk said, “I have lived in the woods and near the lakes for many long years. When I came out of meditation I made a pleasure trip and saw your daughters, and a mind of contamination has arisen in me. I have come from afar to propose marriage.” On hearing these words the king did not know what to do and said to the risk, “Return to your place and wait for an auspicious time.” Heeding the king’s order, the risk went back to the woods.

The king then consulted with his daughters about the matter but none of them would consent to accept the offer. Fearing the ṛṣi’s divine power, he became heavy-hearted and weighed down with worry. One day when the king was at leisure, his youngest daughter calmly asked him, “Father, you have a thousand sons and you are admired by all countries. Why do you look so worried as if you have fear in your mind?” The king said, “The Ṛṣi of the Big Tree has come to propose marriage but none of your sisters consented to be married to him. The risk has divine power and could cause either disaster or bliss. If I cannot fulfill his desire he will certainly become angry with me and destroy our country and terminate our ancestral line, causing insult to our forefathers. This is why I am deeply worried; this is really my fear.” The king’s youngest daughter said apologetically, “It is our sin to have caused you such deep worry. I wish to offer my humble self to lengthen the transmission of the royal line.” The king was delighted to hear this and ordered a carriage to take his youngest daughter to her [new] home.

Upon arriving at the ṛṣi’s hermitage the king apologized to him, saying, “Great Ṛṣi, you comply with supramundane sentiments and you also stoop to care for worldly affection. I venture to offer my youngest daughter to be at your service.” The risk, displeased at the sight of the girl, said to the king, “You must despise me as an old man to give me such an ill-looking girl in marriage.” The king said, “I have asked all my other daughters but none of them would obey my order. Only this youngest one consented to serve you.” The risk was enraged and called down evil on the king’s other daughters, saying, “Let all ninety-nine (sic) girls immediately become hunchbacked! With their disfigured shapes let them remain unmarried their whole lives long!” The king’s messenger went back to check the efficacy of the curse and found that the girls had actually become hunchbacked. Thereafter the place was called the City of Hunchbacked Maidens.

The present king, named Harṣavardhana (known as Xizeng, “Increment of Happiness”), is a descendant of the vaiśya caste. His family had three kings that ruled over the country for two generations. His father was named Pra bhā karavardhana (known as Guangzeng, “Increment of Light”) and his elder brother was Rājyavardhana (known as Wangzeng, “Increment of the Kingdom”). As Rājyavardhana was the senior prince he succeeded to the throne and administered state affairs in a virtuous manner. At that time, King Śaśāṅka (known as Yue, “Moon,” in Chinese) of the country of Karṇasuvarṇa (known as Jiner, “Golden Ear,” in Chinese) in East India often said to his ministers, “A sagacious king in a neighboring country might be the cause of disaster to our own country.” So he lured Rājyavardhana to his country and murdered him. Since the people lost their lord the country of [Kanyākubja] fell into a chaos.

At that time, the minister Bhaṇḍi, a man of high position and good repute, said to his colleagues, “Today we should make a decision about a matter of fundamental importance for the nation. The son of the former king and younger brother of the late monarch is a kind and benevolent man who has filial piety toward his parents and an affectionate mind; he respects the sages and treats his subordinates with equality. I wish to propose him for the throne. What do you think of this? Please state your views.” The ministers all admired 894b the virtue of the late king’s younger brother and had no objection to him. Thus the assistant ministers and other officials exhorted him to be king, saying, “May the prince listen to us. By accumulating merits and cultivating virtues the former king possessed the throne and ruled over the country extensively. When the throne was handed down to Rājyavardhana he should have lived to an old age, but due to the incapability of his assistant ministers he was killed by his enemy. This is a great shame to our country and it is also the fault of the humble ministers. Current public opinion and folk rhymes say that you, a sagacious prince, should succeed to the throne in order to avenge your deceased brother and wipe out the national humiliation, as well as glorify the deeds of your father. This is really a great exploit, so we hope you will not decline the offer.”

The prince said, “From ancient times up to the present it has always been an important affair for one to succeed to the throne, so we should be prudent in establishing a man in the position of a monarch. I am indeed poor in virtue and both my father and my elder brother have departed. Although you recommend me to succeed to the throne, do you think I am a competent candidate for the position? Despite public opinion I dare not forget my own unsubstantiality and shallowness. Now, on the bank of the Ganges River there is an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva that has shown many spiritual manifestations. I wish to go there to consult the oracle of the bodhisattva.” So he went to the image of the bodhisattva and prayed before it after having observed the appropriate fast. Moved by his sincerity, the bodhisattva revealed his true features and inquired of him, “For what do you seek with such sincerity and earnestness?” The prince said, “My accumulated ill fortune caused the death of my father and the murder of my elder brother was a heavy punishment inflicted upon me. I am aware of my own lack of virtue but the people wish to elect me to succeed to the throne to glorify the deeds of my departed father. Being ignorant of what to do, I hope to hear your holy mandate.” The bodhisattva told him, “In your previous life you were a forest-dwelling bhikkhu in this wood and practiced the Way diligently. By the power of this meritorious action you are now a prince in this life. Since the king of the country of Karṇasuvarṇa destroyed the buddha-dharma you should ascend the throne to work for its revival. With a mind of great compassion and sympathy for the people you will soon become king of all the five parts of India. If you wish to prolong the sovereignty of your country you should follow my advice, and then you will be blessed by the gods and have no powerful enemy in neighboring countries. You should not ascend the lion seat nor should you assume the title of king.” With this instruction the prince left the image and ascended the throne with the appellation of prince and the name Śīlāditya (known as Jieri, “Sun of Morality”).

Prince Śīlāditya said to his ministers, “For as long as my elder brother is not avenged and neighboring countries have not pledged allegiance to me, I will not take food with my right hand. I hope you court officials will work together with one heart.” Then he took command of all his troops in the whole country and trained the fighters, who consisted of five thousand elephant-mounted soldiers, twenty thousand cavalrymen, and fifty thousand infantrymen. He marched from west to east to attack those who refused to acknowledge allegiance to him. With his elephants unreleased and his men fully armed, for six years he subjugated all the five parts of India. He not only expanded his territory but also enlarged his military forces, having increased his elephant corps to sixty thousand men and his cavalrymen to one hundred thousand strong.

For thirty years no weapon was raised for fighting and the prince administered the country in peace and practiced frugality. He sought blessedness and performed good deeds so sedulously that he forgot about eating and sleeping. He ordered that within the five parts of India no was allowed to eat meat and if anyone killed any living creature the culprit would be executed without pardon. Alongside the Ganges River he built several thousand stupas, 894c each over one hundred feet high. Temples were constructed in towns and villages and at thoroughfares and crossroads in the five parts of India, where food and drink were stored and medicines laid in to be distributed as alms to wayfarers and the poor, without negligence. Monasteries were constructed at sacred sites and once every five years a great congregation was convened, in which everything in the royal treasury, except weaponry, was given away as alms. Every year śramaṇas of different countries were invited to attend a meeting for twenty-one days, during which time they were provided with the four monastic requisites, and seats were prepared on well-decorated mats so that they might carry out debates and arguments about the teachings of Buddhism, to see who was superior and who inferior in learning. The good ones were praised and the bad ones censured, while the ignorant were dismissed and the brilliant ones promoted. Those who strictly observed the disciplinary rules and were pure in morality were selected to ascend the lion seat and the king received the Dharma from them in person. Those who were pure in observing the disciplinary rules but lacked learning were merely saluted to show respect to them. Those who violated the disciplinary rules and whose immorality was obvious were banished from the country, never to be seen or heard of again.

If the lords and their assistant ministers of the small neighboring countries performed meritorious deeds tirelessly and sought goodness without weariness, the king would take them by the hand to sit together with him and call them “good friends.” He never spoke to those kings who were different in character, and if a negotiation was required to settle a matter an envoy was sent to deal with it. Whenever he went on an inspection tour he would not stay at any one place but would have a hut made for his lodging wherever he stopped on the way. During the three months of the rainy season he would not travel about because of the rain. At his temporary residence he always had delicious food prepared every day to feed one thousand monks of different schools and five hundred brahmans. He always divided a day into three periods: one was spent attending to state affairs and two were devoted to performing meritorious deeds and doing good work. He lived assiduously and the day was too short for him.

At first I was invited by King Kumāra to proceed from the country of Magadha to the country of Kāmarūpa. At that time King Śīlāditya was making an inspection tour in the country of Kajuṅghira, and he sent an order to King Kumāra, saying, “It befits you to come promptly with the śramaṇa, a guest from a distant land, to Nālandā, to attend an assembly.” Thus I went together with King Kumāra to meet him. After exchanging greetings, King Śīlāditya inquired of me, “Which country do you come from? What is the purpose of your journey?” I said in reply, “I come from the country of Great Tang to seek the buddha-dharma.” The king said, “Where is the country of Great Tang located, by what route did you travel, and how far is it from here?” I replied, “It is situated to the northeast at a distance of several myriads of li, and it is the country known in India as Mahācīna.”

The king remarked, “I have heard that in the country of Mahācīna the Prince of Qin has been an intelligent man since his youth, and that now that he has grown up he is a man of unusual bravery. The generation before his was a time of chaos and the country disintegrated. Wars were waged one 895a after another, causing the people to suffer bitterly. But the Prince of Qin, who was far-sighted from an early age, cherished the mind of great compassion to save living beings and he restored order in his country. His moral influence spread widely and his beneficence extended far. People of different localities and regions admire him and serve him as his subjects. Out of gratitude for his edification and maintenance, all the common people chant the Music of Prince Qin’s Victory in praise of him. It has been a long time since we heard this elegant eulogy bestowed on him. Is the good repute heaped on him for his great virtue true to the facts? Is such the actual condition of the country of Great Tang?” I said in reply, “Yes. China is the name of the country [now and] during the reign of the former king, while Great Tang is the national title of the reigning sovereign. Before his accession to the throne he was called the Prince of Qin, and after ascending the throne he is now entitled the Son of Heaven. When the fortune of the previous monarch came to an end the people lost their lord and the country fell into a chaos caused by war and cruel harm and injuries were inflicted on the people. The Prince of Qin, endowed with innate ambition, had the mind of compassion and by exerting the influence of his prestige he annihilated all his enemies. Peace prevailed over all the eight quarters and various countries presented tributes. He loves and tends creatures of the four kinds of birth and respects the Triple Gem with veneration. He has reduced taxation and mitigated penalties yet he has surplus funds in the state treasury, and no one attempts to violate the law. Concerning his moral influence and his profound edification of the people, it is difficult for me to narrate all of this in detail.” King Śīlāditya remarked, “How grand it is! The people of that land have performed good deeds that caused them to have a saintly lord.”

When King Śīlāditya was about to return to the city of Kanyākubja to convoke a religious assembly, hundreds of thousands of his followers gathered on the southern bank of the Ganges, while King Kumāra, followed by a multitude of tens of thousands of people, was on the northern bank of the river.

Divided by the stream, the two retinue groups proceeded by land and water simultaneously, with the two kings leading their four divisions of troops, who sailed in boats and rode elephants, beating drums and blowing conches, plucking strings and playing pipes. After traveling for ninety days they reached the city of Kanyākubja. In a great flowery wood to the west of the Ganges more than twenty kings of various countries, who had been informed beforehand, came with intelligent śramaṇas and brahmans as well as officials and soldiers of their respective countries to attend the great assembly.

King [Śīlāditya] had previously constructed a large monastery on the west bank of the river, with a precious terrace erected at the east to the height of over one hundred feet, on which was placed a golden image of the Buddha of the same size as the king. At the south of the terrace was erected a precious altar, which was the place for bathing the Buddha’s image. At a distance of fourteen or fifteen li to the northeast from here a temporary palace was built.

It was in the second month of spring, and from the first day up to the twenty- first of the month the śramaṇas and brahmans were feted with delicious food. From the temporary palace up to the monastery pavilions adorned with countless jewels were erected along the road on both sides, and musicians standing motionless performed elegant music uninterruptedly. From the temporary palace the king, with a concentrated mind, took out a dimly visible golden image that was more than three feet tall. It was carried on a big elephant screened by a precious curtain. King Śīlāditya, dressed as Indra, held a precious canopy and attended on the left side, while King Kumāra, dressed as Brahmā, carried a white fly-whisk and attended on the right side. On each side there were five hundred elephant-mounted soldiers, clad in armor and guarding the buddha image before and behind, and on each side were one hundred elephants that carried musicians to perform music. As he walked King Śīlāditya scattered pearls and miscellaneous jewels, as well as pieces of gold and silver and flowers as offerings to the Triple Gem. He first bathed the image with perfumed water on the precious altar. Then the king personally carried the image to the west terrace and offered hundreds and thousands of jewels and gems and pieces of kauśeya cloth to it. At that time there were only about twenty śramaṇas participating in the function with the king, while the kings of other countries acted as attendant guards. After the meal was over the monks of different schools assembled to discuss the subtle theories

and deliberate on the ultimate truth. When the sun was about to set the king returned to the temporary palace. In this manner the golden image was taken out every day in the same kind of procession as on the first day, until the convocation was dispersed.

Suddenly the great terrace caught fire and the monastery and its entrance arch were set ablaze. The king said, “I have spent all the valuables of the national treasury to construct this monastery in the name of my late father in order to glorify his superior deeds. Owing to my lack of virtue I could not evoke spiritual protection but caused this calamity. Unlucky man that I am, what use is it for me to live any longer?” Then he burned incense to worship [the Buddha] and made a pledge, saying, “Due to my good deeds in the past I became a king ruling over all parts of India. May the power of my blessedness extinguish this disastrous conflagration. If no spiritual response arises I will give up my life right now.” While saying this, he jumped down and landed on the doorsill. The fire was immediately extinguished, just as if someone had put it out, and the smoke vanished. The various kings, witnessing this strange event, felt increased awe and respect for him. Without changing his countenance and speaking in his normal tone, King Śīlāditya inquired of the various kings, “What would you think if this disaster had actually consumed all that I had achieved?” The kings prostrated themselves on the ground, weeping piteously, and said, “We expected that this superior site achieved by you would be handed down to posterity. If it had been completely consumed nothing else would have been memorable. Only the heretics would have felt delighted and rejoiced over the disaster.” The king said, “In view of this accident, what the Tathāgata has taught is true. The heretical and heterodox schools persist in the view of permanence but our great teacher alone inculcated the theory of impermanence. I have given in alms what I could afford, to my mind’s satisfaction. But all of this is transient and destructible and it proves the truth as taught by the Tathāgata. [The accident] is a great beneficence and there is no reason to be deeply regretful about it.”

He the followed the various kings and went up to the great stupa in the east to have a view of the scenery. When he was descending the steps after having viewed the environs, a stranger suddenly appeared and attempted to 895c attack him with a knife. The king, cornered by the assailant, retreated to a higher step and, bending down backward he got ahold of the man and handed

him over to his officials. At that time the officials were so alarmed with fright that they failed to come to the king’s rescue. The various kings demanded that the man be put to death but King Śīlāditya, without any resentment, ordered that he not be killed and personally interrogated him, asking, “What wrong did I do to you that you attempted to commit such a violent atrocity?” The man said in reply, “Your Majesty’s virtuous benevolence is impartial and all people, both in your country and abroad, are the recipients of your beneficence. I am a wild idiot who does not know what is of great importance. At the instigation in one word from the heretics I acted as an assassin and attempted to murder you.” The king said, “Why did the heretics cherish such an evil intention?” In reply, the man said, “Your Majesty assembled [the śramaṇas] of different countries, emptied the treasury for their maintenance, and cast images of the Buddha, while the heretics summoned from distant places were not properly cared for. Thus they felt humiliated and ordered me, a wild idiot, to commit this malicious act in a deceitful way.” Through further investigation into the heretical adherents it was found that five hundred brahmans and other people of high talent who were assembled under the king’s order felt envious of the hospitality and veneration enjoyed by the śramaṇas and they had shot a burning arrow to set fire to the precious terrace in the hope of murdering the great king amid the turmoil of people trying to put out the fire. As [the plot had not succeeded] they hired this man to carry out the assassination at a strategic point. At that time the various kings and ministers proposed to put the heretics to death but the king punished only the chief criminals, while the rest of the party were pardoned and the five hundred brahmans were banished from the domain of India. Afterward the king returned to his capital city.

The stupa at the northwest of the city was constructed by King Aśoka at the site where the Tathāgata had once spoken on various wonderful doctrines for seven days. Beside it were places where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. There is also a small stupa containing hair and nail relics of the Tathāgata. The stupa built at the place where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma faces the Ganges River on the south. There are three monasteries built in one enclosure, with separate entrances. The images of the Buddha are magnificent and beautiful and the monks are quiet and austere. There are several thousand families of monastic servitors. In a precious casket in the temple there is a tooth relic of the Buddha, about one and a half inches long, with a special luster that changes color between morning and evening. Hundreds and thousands of people, both officials and commoners, come every day from far and near to see it and pay homage to it. Its guardians, who did not like the din and hubbub caused by the crowd, started demanding a heavy entrance fee from the worshipers and announced far and near that those who wished to see the Buddha’s tooth relic would have to pay a large amount of money. Worshipers were displeased with these monks, thinking that they delighted in collecting money in the form of the entrance fee. On each fast day the relic was exposed on a high cushion and hundreds and thousands of people burned incense and scattered flowers. No matter how many flowers were piled up high [before it], the relic casket was never covered over. At each side and in front of the monasteries there is a temple more than one hundred feet high built with brick on stone bases. The buddha images in them, cast either in gold and silver or brass, were adorned with various 896a kinds of gems. In front of each of the two temples there is a small monastery.

Not far to the southeast of the monasteries there is a large temple more than two hundred feet high built out of brick on stone bases, housing a standing statue of the Buddha over thirty feet tall, which was cast in brass and adorned with various kinds of gems. On the stone walls of the temple there are carvings depicting in full detail the acts of the Tathāgata when he was practicing the way of a bodhisattva. Not far to the south of the stone temple is a temple of Sūrya (the sun god), and not far further to the south there is another temple dedicated to Maheśvara (Śiva), both of which were built with bluestone and fully carved with sculptures. They are the same size as the Buddhist temple and each has one thousand families to serve as scavengers to keep the place clean. Music from drums and voices is performed day and night without cease.

At a distance of six or seven li to the southeast of the great city there is a stupa over two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka at the site where the Tathāgata once preached on the doctrine that the physical body is impermanent, sorrowful, empty, and impure. Beside it is a site where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. There is also a small stupa containing hair and nail relics of the Tathāgata. Anyone who suffers from an illness can surely be cured and benefited if he or she circumambulates the stupa with a pious mind.

Going southeast from the great city for more than one hundred li, I reached the city of Navadevakula, which is situated on the eastern bank of the Ganges River and is over twenty li in circuit, with  and pure ponds surrounded by flowery woods that are reflected in the water. To the northwest of the city of Navadevakula at the east of the Ganges is a deva temple consisting of storied pavilions and multitiered terraces, which were exquisitely constructed. Five li to the east of the city there are three monasteries built in one enclosure but with separate gates. There are over five hundred monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Hinayana Sarvāstivāda school. More than two hundred paces in front of the monasteries there is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Although the foundations have collapsed the structure is still more than one hundred feet high. It was built at the site where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for seven days. In the monasteries there is a piece of a śarīra (relic) that emits a light from time to time. Beside them are places where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. Three or four li to the north of the monasteries and on the bank of the Ganges is a stupa more than two hundred feet high that was built by King Aśoka at the site where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for seven days. Five hundred hungry ghosts then came to the Buddha and became awakened after hearing the Dharma; having been released from the realm of hungry ghosts they were reborn in the heavens.

Beside the stupa at the place where the Buddha preached the Dharma is a site where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. Beside it is a stupa containing the Tathāgata’s hair and nail relics.

From here going to the southeast for over six hundred li, I crossed the Ganges to the south and reached the country of Ayodhyā (in the domain of Central India). The country of Ayodhyā is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. This country abounds in cereal crops and has plenty of flowers and fruit. The climate is mild and the people are benign by custom. They have an inclination for performing meritorious deeds and are diligent in learning the arts and crafts. There are more than one hundred monasteries with over three thousand monks, who study both Mahayana and Hinayana doctrines. There are ten deva temples with a few heretics. In the great city there is an old monastery that was the place where Vasubandhu Bodhisattva (known as Shirin in Chinese, and formerly called Posthuman, wrongly translated as “Heavenly Kinsman”) spent several decades composing various treatises on both Mahayana and Hinayana doctrines. The old foundations beside it are the ruins of a hall in which Vasubandhu Bodhisattva expounded Buddhist theories and spoke on the Dharma for the kings of different countries, as well as for prominent śramaṇas and brahmans coming from the four quarters.

Four or five li to the north of the city, in a great monastery on the bank of the Ganges is a stupa over two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka, marking the place where the Tathāgata spoke on the various wonderful doctrines to heavenly and human beings for three months. The stupa beside it marks a place where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. Four or five li to the west of the monastery is a stupa containing the Tathāgata’s hair and nail relics. To the north of the stupa containing hair and nail relics are the ruins of a monastery in which the śāstra master Śrīlabdha (known as Shengshou, “Received in Victory,” in Chinese) of yore composed the Vi- bhāṣā-śāstra of the Sautrāntika school.

In a great mango grove five or six li to the southwest of the city there is an old monastery where Asaṅga Bodhisattva (known as Wushuo, “No Attachment,” in Chinese) received instructions and guided the common people. At night he ascended to the place of Maitreya Bodhisattva in [Tuṣita] Heaven to learn the Yogācārabhūmi-śāstra, the Mahāyānasūtrālaṃkāra-śāstra, the Madhyānta- vibhāga-śāstra, [and other texts]; in the daytime he lectured on the marvelous principles to a large audience. More than one hundred paces to the northwest of the mango grove is a stupa containing hair and nail relics of the Tathāgata. The old foundations beside it mark the place where Vasu Bandhu Bodhisattva descended from Tuṣita Heaven to see Asaṅga Bodhisattva.

Asaṅga Bodhisattva, a native of the country of Gandhāra, was a man of virtue born one thousand years after the demise of the Buddha and realized the Way after receiving edification. He became a monk of the Mahīśāsaka school to learn its teachings, but soon afterward he turned his mind toward the Mahayana doctrines. His younger brother, Vasubandhu Bodhisattva, became a monk of the Sarvāstivāda school to receive an education. He was a man of wide learning with a retentive memory, and he possessed comprehensive knowledge and probed into its essence. Asaṅga’s disciple Buddhasiṃha (known as Shizijue, “Buddha Lion”) was a monk who observed the disciplinary rules immaculately and was well known for his high talents. These two or three sagely persons often said among themselves that since the purpose of their spiritual cultivation was to see Maitreya in person [in their next rebirth], whoever among them died first and fulfilled his long-cherished wish should come back to inform the others where he had been reborn. Buddha siṃha died first but he did not come back to report his whereabouts for three years. Later Vasubandhu passed away but he too did not report back after six months. The heretics sneered at them, deeming that Vasubandhu Bodhi sattva and Buddhasiṃha had been reborn in an evil state and so they could not show any spiritual response.

Asaṅga Bodhisattva was instructing his disciples in the methods of practicing meditation one night when the lamplight suddenly faded out and a great brightness appeared in the sky. A heavenly being descended from the air and entered the courtyard to worship Asaṅga, who asked him, “Why do you come so late? What is your name now?” [The heavenly being] said in reply, “After my death here I repaired to Tuṣita Heaven, where I was born from a lotus flower in the inner department of the heaven. When the lotus flower opened Maitreya said to me with praise, ‘Welcome, Guanghui (“Vast Wisdom”)! Welcome, Guanghui!’ As soon as I had just finished circumambulating him once, I descended to report this to you.” Asaṅga Bodhisattva asked, “Where is Buddhasiṃha now?” The reply was, “When I was circumambulating [Maitreya] I saw Buddhasiṃha in the outer department indulging himself in sensual pleasures, and he was so busy that he had scarcely any time to look at me, much less come down to report to you!” Asaṅga Bodhisattva said, “Let it be so. Now what does Maitreya look like? What Dharma does he preach?” The reply was, “His features are so beautiful that they are beyond description. He preached on the wonderful Dharma, of which the purports were the same as you have explained here. The bodhisattva has a melodious voice, so fluent and elegant that those who hear it forget about fatigue and his students never feel bored.”

More than forty li to the northwest of the old foundations of Asaṅga’s lecture hall I came to an old monastery with the Ganges River at its north, where there is a brick stupa over one hundred feet high. This was the place where Vasubandhu Bodhisattva began to cherish a mind to accept the Mahayana teachings. When he was traveling here from North India Asaṅga Bodhisattva sent a disciple to greet him at the midway point, and it was at this monastery where they met each other. Asaṅga’s disciple stayed outside the house and at night he recited the Daśabhūmi-sūtra. Upon hearing the recitation Vasubandhu became awakened and repented that he had not before heard the very profound and wonderful Dharma. Thinking that the source of the fault of slander is the tongue, he intended to cut off [his own tongue]. As he grasped a scraping knife to slice off his tongue he saw Asaṅga appearing before him, who told him, “The system of Mahayana teachings is the ultimate truth, praised by all the buddhas and regarded as the orthodox school by various saints. I intended to admonish you but now you have become awakened 897a by yourself. Nothing is better than a timely awakening. According to the teachings of the buddhas, cutting off one’s tongue is not a way of repentance. In bygone days you insulted the Mahayana teachings with your tongue, so it would be better for you to amend your ways by praising the Mahayana teachings, also with your tongue. What would be the benefit of becoming mute?” After having said this, [the illusion] disappeared. Following this advice, Vasubandhu did not cut off his tongue and went to Asaṅga to study the Mahayana teachings with him. He engaged in careful learning with profound speculation and wrote more than a hundred treatises on Mahayana theories, all of which are very popular works.

From here going to the east for more than three hundred li, I crossed the Ganges to the north and reached the country of Ayamukha (in the domain of Central India). The country of Ayamukha is two thousand four hundred or five hundred li in circuit. The capital city borders on the Ganges River and is more than twenty li in circuit. The climate and local products of this country are the same as in the country of Ayodhyā. The people are honest and their custom is plain and simple. They are diligent in learning and like to perform meritorious deeds. There are five monasteries with over one thousand monks who study the Hinayana teachings of the Saṃmitīya school. There are more than ten deva temples, where heretics live together.

Not far away to the southwest of the city there is a stupa at the bank of the Ganges. Built by King Aśoka, it is two hundred feet high, marking the place where in olden times the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for three months. Beside it there is a place where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down, and there is also a stupa containing the Tathāgata’s hair and nail relics. Over two hundred monks live in the monastery beside the stupa. The Buddha’s image is well adorned and has an austere appearance, as if he were still alive. The terraces and pavilions of the monastery are grand and beautifully built in a special style, rising high up into the air. This was the place where in olden times the śāstra master Buddhadāsa (known as Jueshi, “Buddha Servant”) composed the Mahāvibhāṣā-śāstra of the Sarvāstivāda school.

From here going to the southeast for more than seven hundred li, I crossed the Ganges to the south and reached the country of Prayāga, north of the Jumna River (in the domain of Central India). The country of Prayāga is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city, situated at the confluence of the two rivers, is over twenty li in circuit. It abounds in cereal crops and fruit trees are luxuriant. The climate is temperate and the people are kind and agreeable by custom. They take pleasure in learning arts and crafts and believe in heretical religions. There are two monasteries with few monks, all of whom study Hinayana teachings. Deva temples amount to several hundreds and they have a large number of heretics.

In the wood of campana flowers to the south of the great city is a stupa built by King Aśoka, which is still more than one hundred feet high though the foundations have collapsed. Formerly the Tathāgata subdued heretics at this place. Beside it is a stupa containing hair and nail relics and there is also

site where he used to walk up and down. Beside the stupa of hair and nail relics is an old monastery where Deva (known as Tian, “God”) Bodhisattva composed the Śataśāstra-vaipulya to frustrate Hinayana adherents and conquer heretics.

When Deva Bodhisattva first came to this monastery from South India there was in the city a heretical brahman who was learned in debate and eloquent in discussion without impediment. He insisted on the identification of names and facts and he would refute his opponents to their wits’ end. Knowing that Deva was widely learned in profound doctrines and wishing to break his spirit, the brahman started a conversation by inquiring his name, saying, “What is your name?” Deva said, “Deva.” The heretic said, “Who is Deva?” Deva said, “I am.” The heretic said, “Who is I?” Deva said, “A dog.” The heretic said, “Who is the dog?” Deva said, “You.” The heretic said, “Who are you?” Deva said, “Deva.” The heretic said, “Who is Deva?” [Deva said,] “I am.” The heretic said, “Who is I?” Deva said, “A dog.” The heretic said, “Who is the dog?” Deva said, “You.” The heretic said, “Who are you?” Deva said, “Deva.” In this manner they argued in a circle and the heretic began to understand [that Deva was irrefutable]. Since then he deeply respected Deva’s moralizing edification.

In the city there is a deva temple consisting of many lofty and beautifully decorated buildings, which showed spiritual signs in various ways. According to the records of the temple it is the best place for people to plant meritorious seeds. The merit of donating one coin at this temple is greater than that of giving one thousand pieces of gold in alms at other places, and [it is believed that] someone who commits suicide and dies in this temple will enjoy eternal bliss in the heavens. In front of the temple is a big tree with luxuriant branches and leaves that cast dark shadows on the ground. A man-eating ghost made his abode in the tree and skeletons were scattered about to the left and right sides. People coming to this temple are liable to give up their lives, as they are simultaneously frightened by the horrible tradition and allured by the evil spirits. This absurd practice has been carried out without alteration from ancient times up to the present.

Recently there was a young man of the brahman caste who was intelligent and magnanimous in character and endowed with brilliant wisdom and high talent. He came to the temple and said to the people, “Crooked customs and corrupt desires are hard to mend by dissuasion and guidance. I must practice the same in order to correct them.” He climbed up into the tree and said to his friends gathered below, “I am going to die to testify to the truth of what is deceitful. Heavenly maidens and musicians are in the air to greet me. I shall forsake this humble body of mine at the best place for doing so.” When he was about to throw himself down to end his life his relatives and friends tried to dissuade him from doing so, but he would not change his mind. They spread their garments on the ground below the tree and saved his life when he dropped to the ground. After a long while he came to his senses and said, “I only saw some evil spirits in the air beckoning to me and there was nothing 897c of heavenly bliss.”

To the east of the great city and at the junction of the two rivers there is a dune more than ten li wide, dry and covered with fine sand. From ancient times up to now various kings and people of great wealth have always come here whenever they wished to give alms. This place is called the Grand Place of Almsgiving, where gifts are distributed without counting.

At present, King Śīlāditya follows the example of his predecessors in practicing almsgiving. He spends all the wealth he has accumulated in five years on almsgiving in a single day and piles up precious things at the [Grand] Place of Almsgiving. On the first day he installed a large image of the Buddha adorned with various gems, to which he offered the best rare jewels. Next he gave offerings to the resident monks, then to those who were present in the assembly, then to the highly talented, learned, erudite, and versatile scholars, then to the heretical students, hermits, and recluses, and finally to the kinless and the poor. Various kinds of precious objects and the best delicious food were distributed to them all in a perfect manner according to their grades and ranks. When the treasury was emptied and the clothing and other objects were exhausted, [the king’s] lustrous pearl in his topknot and the necklace on his body were given away one after the other, without the least reluctance. When King Śīlāditya had completed the almsgiving he said, “How happy I am! I have placed all I had in the adamantine and indestructible storehouse!” After that the lords and kings of various countries offered precious jewels and garments to him, and in less than ten days his treasury was replenished.

Several hundred people drown themselves every day at the confluence of the two rivers to the east of the Grand Place of Almsgiving. It is popular custom as the people believe that in order to be reborn in the heavens they should starve [themselves] and drown in the river at this spot. The people bathe in midstream to wash away their sins and defilements. Thus people from different countries come to this place from distant regions to starve for seven days and die. Even mountain apes and wild monkeys come in groups to the riverside. Some of them take a bath and go back, while others starve themselves to death. When King Śīlāditya was performing the great almsgiving a monkey stayed alone under a tree at the riverside, without going anywhere, and fasted. After a few days it died of starvation. Some heretical ascetics plant long poles in the river; at dawn they climb up the poles and stand with one hand holding the top of the pole and one foot on a peg, while stretching out the other hand and foot into the air. Craning their necks, with eyes wide open, they gaze at the sun moving to the right and do not come down until dusk. There are several scores of such ascetics, who hope to escape the wheel of rebirth by practicing such rigorous austerities. Some of them have never relaxed their self-mortification for several decades.

From here I entered a great forest in the southwest, where ferocious animals and wild elephants in groups attack wayfarers. Unless accompanied by a large number of companions it is difficult for a traveler to cross this region alone. After going for more than five hundred li, I came to the country of Kauśāmbī (formerly known as Jushanmi erroneously, in the domain of Central India).

The country of Kauśāmbī is over six thousand li in circuit and its capital city 898a is more than thirty li in circuit. The land is fertile and good for agricultural production. The country abounds in nonluminous rice and yields plenty of sugar- cane. The climate is hot and the people are bold and furious by custom. They love to learn classical texts and arts and advocate the performance of good and meritorious deeds. There are about ten monasteries lying in a dilapidated and deserted condition, with more than three hundred monks who study the Hinayana teachings. There are over fifty deva temples with numerous heretics.

In the old palace in the city there is a great temple, more than sixty feet in height, that houses an image of the Buddha carved in sandalwood, with a stone canopy suspended over it. It was made by King Udayana (known as Chuai, “Release from Passion,” formerly mistranslated as King Youtian). The image often shows spiritual signs and emits a divine light from time to time. The kings of various countries, relying on their might, wanted to take it but when they tried to lift it up they could not move it, even though a large number of people were employed to do so. Then they had pictures of the image produced for worship and each claimed that his picture was the most true to life. Speaking of the image’s origin, it is said that when the Tathāgata, after having realized full enlightenment, ascended to Trayastriṃśa Heaven to preach the Dharma to his mother, the king was eager to see him and wished to make a likeness of him. He requested Venerable Maudgalyāyana to use his supernatural power to transport an artisan to the heavenly palace to observe the Buddha’s fine features, and the artisan carved an image of him in sandalwood. When the Tathāgata returned to earth from heaven, the sandalwood image stood up to greet the World-honored One, who said to it sympathetically, “Are you tired from teaching the people? You are what we hope will enlighten the people in the last period of the buddha-dharma.”

More than a hundred paces to the east of the temple are places where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. A well and bathhouse used by the Tathāgata are not far away. The well still supplies water but the bathhouse has fallen into ruins. At the southeast corner inside the city are the ruins of the old residence of Elder Ghoṣila (formerly transcribed as Jushiluo incorrectly), where there is a Buddhist temple and a stupa containing [the Buddha’s] hair and nail relics. Another old foundation is that of the Buddha’s bathhouse.

Not far to the southeast of the city is an old monastery built in the garden of Elder Ghoṣila in which is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. The Tathāgata stayed here preaching the Dharma for several years. Beside it are sites where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down. There are also stupas containing the Tathāgata’s hair and nail relics. On the storied pavilion to the southeast of the monastery is an old brick chamber in which Vasubandhu Bodhisattva stayed and composed the Vijñapti mātratāsiddhi-śāstra to refute Hinayana teachings and defeat heretics. In a 898b mango grove to the east of the monastery is the old foundation of a house in which Asaṅga Bodhisattva composed the Prakaraṇāryavācā-śāstra.

Eight or nine li to the southwest of the city is the cave of a venomous dragon. Formerly the Tathāgata subdued this dragon and left his own shadow in the cave. Although this is recorded in books nothing more of it can be seen now. Beside the cave is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. At its side are sites where the Tathāgata used to sit and walk up and down and a stupa containing his hair and nail relics. Those who suffer from illness come here to pray for health and most of them are cured. As this is be the country where Śākyamuni’s Dharma will finally come to an end, all the people, from kings down to commoners, naturally feel sad when they come to this land and shed tears before returning home with sighs of regret.

Going for more than seven hundred li through a great forest to the northeast of the dragon’s cave, I crossed the Ganges to the north and reached the city of Kāśapura. It is over ten li in circuit and the inhabitants are rich and happy. Beside it there are the ruins of a monastery where Dharmapāla Bodhisattva subdued heretics in the old days. A previous king of this country who supported heterodox views intended to destroy the buddha-dharma in order to uphold the heretics. He invited from among them a śāstra master, who was intelligent, had great talent, and understood subtle theories, to compose a fallacious book of thirty-two thousand words in one thousand stanzas to denounce the buddha dharma and make his own sect the orthodox one. The king then summoned the monks to hold a debate, on the condition that if the heretical śāstra master won the contest the buddha-dharma would be destroyed, and if the monks were undefeated then the śāstra master would cut off his tongue.

At that time the monks, fearing that they might be defeated, assembled to discuss the matter, saying, “The Sun of Wisdom has sunk and the Bridge of the Dharma is about to be destroyed. How can we compete with the heretics who have the king standing by their side? Under these circumstances what should we do?” The assembly remained silent and no one ventured to raise a proposal. Dharmapāla Bodhisattva, then a young man who was eloquent, intelligent, and learned, and who enjoyed a widespread reputation, declared to the assembly, “Although I am an ignorant person I venture to make a brief statement. It would truly befit you to send me promptly to answer the king’s order. If I win the debate it will be due to spiritual protection, and if I fail my youthfulness can be blamed. In this way we can give an explanation in either case and no censure will be incurred upon the Dharma or the community of monks.” The whole assembly consented to his proposal and, according to his suggestion, Dharmapāla was sent to answer the king’s order.

He mounted the seat of discussion and the heretical [śāstra master] recited his book in a rhythmic voice, brought out all the essentials of his work, and waited for a refutation. Dharmapāla listened to his recitation and said with a smile, “I have won. Shall I recite your book backward, or shall I recite it with the phrases transposed in order?” The heretic was dismayed and said, “You should not be self-important. One who can fully understand the meanings of my book is the winner. First recite it in its proper sequence and then give 898c an explanation of the text.” Dharmapāla then imitated the heretic’s rhythmic voice, recited the text, and expounded the meanings of its contents, with no fault either in phraseology or in principles, nor was there any deviation in the intonation. After hearing this, the heretic made ready to cut off his tongue. Dharma pāla said to him, “Cutting off your tongue is not a way to amend yourself. Real repentance is to correct your [wrongly] grasped opinions.” He preached the Dharma to the heretic, who began to have faith in it and understand its meanings. The king gave up the erroneous way and embraced the Dharma in adoration.

Beside the place where Dharmapāla subdued the heretic is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Though the foundations have collapsed it is still more than two hundred feet high. Formerly the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for six months at this place. Beside it is a place where [he] walked up and down and a stupa containing his hair and nail relics.

Going northward from here for one hundred seventy or eighty li, I reached the country of Viṣaka (in the domain of Central India). The country of Viṣaka is more than four thousand li in circuit and its capital city is sixteen li in circuit. It abounds in cereal crops and yields plenty of flowers and fruit. The climate is moderate and the people are sincere and honest by custom. They are fond of learning without getting tired and they never regress in performing good deeds. There are more than twenty monasteries with over three thousand monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya sect of the Hinayana school. There are over fifty deva temples with a great many heretics.

To the south of the city there is a large monastery on the left side of the road in which the arhat Devaśarman composed the Vijñānakāya-śāstra to advocate the theory of the non-self in the human body, while the arhat Gopa wrote the Treatise on the Essential Truth of the Holy Teachings (Sheng jiao yao shi lun) to maintain the doctrine of the existence of the self in the human body. These incompatible views about the Dharma caused much controversy. It was also in this monastery that Dharmapāla Bodhisattva subdued one hundred Hinayana śāstra masters in seven days. Beside the monastery is a stupa more than two hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Formerly the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for six years at this place to edify the people. There is a marvelous tree, about six or seven feet tall, which neither sprouts leaves in springtime nor withers in autumn. Formerly the Tathāgata cast down a tooth twig he had used for cleaning his teeth, which took root and grew into the luxuriant tree that it there now. People holding heterodox views and heretics have tried to cut the tree down but it grows back as before. Not far away from the tree are places where the four past buddhas used to sit and walk up and down, and there is also a stupa containing the Tathāgata’s hair and nail relics. The foundations of the holy sites are connected with one another in a wood with ponds, in which the shapes of the trees are reflected. Going from here to the northeast for over five hundred li, I reached the country of Śrāvastī (formerly known as Shewei erroneously, in the domain of Central India).

End of Fascicle V of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

 

Fascicle VI

Four Countries, from Śrāvastīto Kuśinagara

1. The Country of Śrāvastī

2. The Country of Kapilavastu

3. The Country of Rāma[grāma]

4. The Country of Kuśinagara

The country of Śrāvastī is over six thousand li in circuit. Its capital city is indesolation and there is nothing to mark its boundaries. The old foundations of the palace city are more than twenty li in circuit. Although mostly in ruins it is still inhabited. It abounds in cereal crops and the climate is temperate. The people are sincere and honest by custom, diligent in study, and like to perform meritorious deeds. There are several hundred monasteries, most of which are dilapidated, with few monks who are followers of the Saṃmitīya school. Deva temples amount to a hundred and they have many heretics. This was the capital of the country ruled by King Prasenajit (known as Shengjun, “Victorious Army,” formerly called Bosini erroneously in abbreviation) when the Tathāgata was living in the world. The old foundations in the palace city are the remnant bases of King Prasenajit’s palace. Not far to the east is another old foundation, on which a small stupa has been built to mark the site of the Great Dharma Hall constructed by King Prasenajit for the Tathāgata in olden times. Not far from the Dharma Hall a stupa was built on the old foundations of the temple of the Buddha’s maternal aunt, Prajāpatī (known as Shengzhu, “Protectress of Creatures,” formerly mis transcribed as Boshe-boti) Bhikṣuṇī, constructed for her by King Prasenajit. Next to the east, a stupa marks the site of the old residence of Sudatta (known as Shanshi, “Good Almsgiver,” formerly mis transcribed as Xuda).

Beside the residence of Sudatta is a great stupa built at the spot where Aṅgulimāla (known as Zhiman, “Chaplet of Finger Bones,” formerly mis transcribed as Yangjuemoluo) gave up his evil ways. Aṅgulimāla was a wicked

man of Śrāvastī who harmed living beings and committed atrocities in the city and throughout the country. He murdered people in order to collect their finger bones to make a mala. Just as he was about to kill his mother to get her finger bone to complete the number of bones required for the mala, the World-honored One, with a mind of compassion, was making a tour of edification. Seeing the World-honored One from a distance, Aṅgulimāla felt glad and thought, “I am sure to be reborn in the heavens, as my late teacher taught me that anyone who hurts the Buddha and kills his own mother will be reborn in Brahmā Heaven.” He said to his mother, “Old lady, you may stay here for a while. I will go kill that great śramaṇa first.” Saying this, he wielded a sword and went to meet the World-honored One. As the Tathāgata slowly retreated the wicked Aṅgulimāla could not catch up with him, even though he walked very fast. The World-honored One said to him, “Why do you hold on \to your ignoble ideas? You have abandoned the root of goodness and aroused the source of wickedness.” On hearing this admonition Aṅgulimāla became aware that his behavior was wrong. He took refuge [in the Buddha] and sought to learn the Dharma and, as he studied diligently, he attained athwartship.

Five or six li to the south of the city is Jetavana (known as Shenglin, “Victor’s Wood,” formerly mis transcribed as Qituo),  the garden of Anāthapiṇḍika, where King Prasenajit’s minister Sudatta constructed a temple for the Buddha. In the old days it was a monastery but now it lies in ruins. There are two stone pillars over seventy feet high, one at each side of the east gate. On top of the left pillar a wheel sign is carved, and a figure of a bull is engraved on top of the right pillar. Both pillars were erected by King Aśoka. The buildings are dilapidated and only the remains of the old foundations still stand, with the exception of a brick chamber that stands alone. In this chamber there is an image of the Buddha. After the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for his mother in Trāyastriṃśa Heaven, King Prasenajit made this image, after hearing that King Udayana had carved a sandalwood image of the Buddha.

Elder Sudatta was a kind and intelligent man who knew how to accumulate wealth and how to spend money to help the poor and needy and provide alms to kinless and aged people. In praise of his virtue the people of his time called him Anāthapiṇḍika (“Giver of Alms to the Poor and Helpless”). Hearing about the Buddha’s virtues, he cherished a deep adoration for him and wished to build a temple to which to invite the Buddha. The World-honored One sent Śāriputra to go [with Sudatta] to survey the location, and they found that only Prince Jeta’s garden was a suitably high and dry site. They went to see the prince and told him their intention. The prince said in jest, “I will sell my garden for as many pieces of gold as it takes to completely cover the ground!”

On hearing this, Sudatta was exhilarated and took gold coins from his treasury to pave the ground of the garden, as Prince Jeta had suggested. When only a small portion of the land remained uncovered the prince begged to retain it for himself, saying, “The Buddha is really like a plot of good land and I too should sow good seeds in it.” He built a temple on the remaining portion of the ground. The World-honored One went there and said to Ānanda, “As the ground of the garden has been purchased by Sudatta and the trees have been given by Prince Jeta, these two have the same purpose in mind and their merits should be equally esteemed. Henceforward this place should be called the Garden of Jetavana-Anāthapiṇḍika.”

To the northeast of the Garden of Anāthapiṇḍika is a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata once bathed a sick bhikkhu. Once, when the Tathāgata was living in the world, there was a sick bhikkhu, suffering from pain, who lived alone in solitude. Seeing him, the World-honored One asked, “What is your malady and why are you living alone?” The bhikkhu said in reply, “I am indolent by nature and cannot endure medical treatment. That is why I am sick and without anyone to attend me.” With a mind of compassion the Tathāgata said to him, “Good man, now I am here to attend you.” Saying this, he stroked the sick bhikkhu with his hand, completely curing him, and then helped then bhikkhu to go out through the door. The Buddha then changed the bhikṣu’s bedding, bathed him, and dressed him in new clothes. The Buddha said to him, “You should always be diligent and exert yourself.” Hearing this instruction, the bhikkhu felt grateful and was happy in mind and comfortable 899c in body.

To the northwest of the Garden of Anāthapiṇḍika is a small stupa at the place where Maudgalyāyana could not lift the belt of Śāriputra’s robe with his supernatural powers. The Buddha was once at Anavatapta Lake with a congregation of human and heavenly beings. Only Śāriputra was absent from the meeting and the Buddha asked Maudgalyāyana to summon him to the congregation. When Maudgalyāyana went by the Buddha’s order to the place of Śāriputra, the latter was mending his clerical robe. Maudgal yā yana said to him, “The World-honored One is now at Anavatapta Lake and has ordered me to summon you.” Śāriputra said, “Wait a moment. When I have finished mending my robe I will go with you.” Maudgalyāyana said, “If you do not go with me immediately I will exercise my supernatural powers and carry you and your rock chamber to the congregation!” Śāriputra then untied his belt and put it on the ground, saying, “If you can pick up my belt I will go with you immediately.” Maudgalyāyana exercised his great supernatural powers but he could not pick the belt up, even though his strength caused an earthquake. Then he returned to the Buddha through the air by the power of his magic feet and found that Śāriputra was already seated in the congregation. Maudgalyāyana remarked with a sigh, “Now I have realized that the power of divine capabilities is inferior to that of transcendental wisdom.”

Not far from the stupa of belt-lifting is a well from which water was drawn for the Tathāgata’s use when he was living in the world. Beside it is another stupa built by King Aśoka, in which are preserved the relics of the Tathāgata. Indicative emblems were raised and stupas constructed at the sites where he walked up and down and preached the Dharma. All of these places are protected by deities, who occasionally show spiritual manifestations in the form of celestial music or divine fragrance. Other auspicious signs of great blessedness are difficult for me to relate in detail.

Not far behind the monastery is the place where some young Brahmanical students killed a prostitute in order to slander the Buddha. The Tathāgata was in possession of the ten powers as well as fearlessness and omniscient wisdom, and he was honored by human and heavenly beings and respected by saints and sages. The heretics discussed the matter together, saying, “We should contrive a devious scheme to slander and publicly insult him.” Then they hired a prostitute to pretend to be a hearer of the Dharma. After she had became known as such to all, the heretics killed her in secret, buried the corpse beside a tree, and appealed to the king for redress. The king ordered an investigation and discovered the corpse in Jetavana Garden. The heretics exclaimed, “The great śramaṇa Gautama often preached disciplinary rules and chastity. But now he has had illicit intercourse with this woman and killed her in order to shut her up. He has violated the rules against unchastity and killing. What disciplinary rules and austerities has he practiced?” At that moment heavenly beings in the air cried out, “The wicked heretics are merely making up a slander!”

More than a hundred paces to the east of the monastery there is a large and deep pit, which was the place where Devadatta, who intended to poison the Buddha, fell into hell alive. Devadatta (known as Tianshou, “Given by 900a Heaven”) was the son of King Droṇodana. Through twelve years’ study with zealous perseverance he mastered all the eighty thousand Dharma piṭakas. Afterward he sought to learn supernatural powers for the sake of gaining material advantage and he associated with evil friends, to whom he said in a discussion, “I have as many as thirty of the physical marks of a great person, almost as many as the Buddha [who had thirty-two], and I also have a great following surrounding me. What is the difference between me and the Tathāgata?” With this thought in mind, he caused a schism in the community of monks. By the Buddha’s order and with the aid of his spiritual power, Śāriputra and Maudgalyāyana preached the Dharma and exhorted the monks who had gone astray to return to the harmonious community of monks. But Devadatta did not relinquish his evil mind and put poison on his fingernails, intending to harm the Buddha when he went to pay homage to him. He came from a great distance to carry out his plot but when he reached this spot the earth cracked open and he fell into hell alive.

To the south of the pit is another one, which was the place where Kokālika Bhikṣu fell into hell alive because he had slandered the Buddha.

More than eight hundred paces to the south of the pit of Kokālika there is another large and deep pit, which was the place where the brahman woman Ciñcā fell into hell alive because she had slandered the Buddha. Once, when the Buddha was preaching the essentials of the Dharma to human and heavenly beings, a [woman] disciple of a heretical religion saw him from a distance in the assembly of respectful people. [The woman] thought, “Today I must insult Gautama to spoil his fame so that only my teacher will enjoy a good reputation.” She hid a wooden basin inside her clothes and came to Anāthapiṇḍika Garden, where she declared aloud in the assembly, “This preacher had illicit intercourse with me and the child in my womb is a Śākya!” The heretics believed in her words but the staunch followers of the Buddha knew that she was committing slander. At that moment Indra, wishing to clear up their doubts, transformed himself into a white rat and gnawed through the cord that bound the basin, which dropped down with a thud and startled the assembly. All those who witnessed this event were greatly delighted. A man in the assembly picked up the wooden basin and showed it to the woman, saying, “Is this your child?” At that time the earth cracked open and the woman fell alive into the hell of uninterrupted pain to suffer retribution.

All these three pits are bottomless and during the autumn and summer seasons, when torrential rains inundate the ditches and pools, water never collects in them.

Sixty or seventy paces to the east of the monastery is a temple over sixty feet high, in which there is an image of the seated Buddha facing toward the east. The Tathāgata once held a discussion with the heretics at this place. Further to the east is a deva temple, of the same size as the Buddhist temple. At sunrise the shadow of the deva temple does not fall on the Buddhist temple, but at sunset the shadow of the Buddhist temple covers the deva temple.

Three or four li to the east of the overshadowing temple is a stupa built at the place where Venerable Śāriputra had a discussion with the heretics. At the time Elder Sudatta first purchased Prince Jeta’s garden with the intention of building a temple for the Tathāgata, Venerable Śāriputra went together with the elder to make a survey of the plot. The teachers of the six heretical schools challenged him to a contest in demonstrating supernatural powers. Acting according to circumstances in carrying out edification, Śāriputra subdued the heretics in conformity with their propensities. In front of the temple and beside the [Śāriputra] stupa there is another stupa built at the spot where the Tathāgata defeated various heretics [in debate] and also accepted the invitation of Mother Viśākhā.

To the south of the stupa of accepting the invitation is the place where King Virūḍhaka (formerly known as “Lord of Piliuli” erroneously), on his way to invade the Śākyas, saw the Buddha and turned back his army. After ascending the throne King Virūḍhaka raised an army and mobilized his people to avenge a former insult. When his troops were deployed he ordered them to march. A bhikkhu got wind of this and informed the Buddha about it. The World-honored One then went to sit under a withered tree. When King Virūḍhaka saw the World-honored One from a distance, he dismounted to worship him and stood to one side, asking, “Why do you not sit under a tree with luxuriant branches and rich foliage, but instead stay under this tree with dead branches and withered leaves?” The World-honored One said in reply, “My clansmen are like branches and leaves to me. Now that they are in danger where can I find shelter?” The king remarked, “The World-honored One is speaking for his clans people. I should go back.” He looked at the Buddha and, moved by his compassion, he recalled his army.

Near the place of withdrawing troops is a stupa marking the spot where the Śākya maidens were slaughtered. After King Virūḍhaka won the battle against the Śākyas he selected five hundred Śākya maidens for his harem. The Śākya maidens indignantly uttered resentful words and insolently disparaged the king as the son of a slave. When the king heard about this he was enraged and ordered that the Śākya maidens be slaughtered. By the king’s order the executioners severed [the women’s] hands and feet and threw them into a pit. The Śākya maidens, suffering bitter pain, called on the Buddha. The World-honored One saw the sad plight of the maidens with his eye of discernment, and ordered a bhikkhu to send some clothes to the maidens. He then went to preach the wonderful Dharma to them, such as the bondage of the five desires, the three ways of transmigration, and the long and distant course of rebirth with the pain of separation from loved ones. On hearing the Buddha’s teachings the Śākya maidens got rid of defilements and gained the pure eye of the Dharma. They all died at the same time and were reborn in heaven. Indra appeared as a brahman and had their bodies collected and cremated. People of later times recorded this event.

Not far from the stupa of the slaughter of the Śākya maidens is a large

dried-up pool where King Virūḍhaka fell into hell. After visiting the Śākya 900c maidens the World-honored One returned to Anāthapiṇḍika Garden and told the bhikṣus, “ King Virūḍhaka will be burned to death after seven days.” Hearing the Buddha’s prediction, the king became very frightened. [But] on the seventh day the king was as happy as ever and had no [feeling of] danger. To celebrate, he ordered the ladies of his harem to accompany him on an outing to the riverside for merrymaking. But he still feared that a fire might occur, so he sailed in a boat and drifted with the waves of the river. A blazing fire suddenly broke out and burned the light boat and the king was thrown alive into the hell of uninterrupted torture.

Going three or four li to the northwest of the monastery I reached the Wood of Regaining Eyes. There are places where the Tathāgata walked up and down and various saints practiced meditation and stupas were built to mark the sites.

In this country there was a band of five hundred brigands that ran amok in the villages and plundered the cities. King Prasenajit arrested them, put out their eyes, and threw them into a great forest. Suffering the painful torture of this punishment, the bandits sorrowfully called on the Buddha. The Tathāgata was at Jetavana Temple, and he heard their pitiful voices and had compassion on them. A cooling breeze blew mildly and wafted some medicine down from the Snow Mountains, which filled their eyes and they recovered their eyesight. On seeing the World-honored One standing before them they cherished the mind of enlightenment (bodhicitta), worshiped him with happiness, and departed after throwing down their staves, which then took root in the ground.

More than sixty li to the northwest of the great city is an ancient city that was the birthplace of Kāśyapa Buddha, who was born in the bhadrakalpa (period of virtue) at the time when the human life span was twenty thousand years. To the south of the city is a stupa marking the spot where he first met his father after having realized full enlightenment. The stupa to the north of the city contains the entire body of Kāśyapa Buddha and all of these stupas were erected by King Aśoka.

Going from here to the southeast for over five hundred li, I reached the country of Kapilavastu (formerly mis transcribed as Jialuowei, in the domain of Central India). The country of Kapilavastu is more than four thousand li in circuit and there are two palace cities, which are completely deserted. The wall of the royal city is dilapidated and its circumference is unknown. The inner palace city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit and its wall is built of bricks; the foundation is thick and strong. The country has been deserted for a long time and is sparsely populated. There is no grand ruler and each city has its own lord. The soil is rich and crops are sown and reaped in season. The climate is never abnormal and the people are genial by custom. There are more than one thousand ruined foundations of old monasteries and beside the palace city is a monastery inhabited by over three thousand monks, who study the Hinayana teachings of the Saṃmitīya school. There are two deva temples, with heretics living together.

Inside the palace city is the old foundation of the main audience hall of 901a King Śuddhodana. A statue of the king is placed in a shrine built on the old foundation. Not far from this is the old foundation of Lady Mahāmāyā’s bedchamber. A statue of the lady is kept in a shrine built on the old foundation. Beside it is another shrine, marking the place where Śākya Bodhisattva’s spirit descended to incarnate in his mother’s womb, and in this shrine there is a likeness depicting the Bodhisattva’s spirit [entering his mother’s womb]. According to the tradition of the Sthavira sect, the Bodhisattva’s spirit entered his mother’s womb on the night of the thirtieth day of the month of UttarāĀṣāḍhā, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the fifth month in our country. The tradition of the other sects holds that this event took place on the night of the twenty-third day of that month, corresponding to the eighth day of the fifth month in our land.

To the northeast of the place of the descent of the Bodhisattva’s spirit there is a stupa marking the place where the ṛṣi Asita read the prince’s physiognomy. On the day when the Bodhisattva was born many fortunate and auspicious signs appeared simultaneously. King Śuddhodana summoned various physiognomists and said to them, “Now a son has been born to me. What is his future, good or evil? Tell me straight in plain words.” They said, “According to the records of ancient sages and the appearance of good signs the prince will be a universal monarch if he remains at home, and if he renounces home he will become a fully enlightened person.” At that time the risk Asita came from a distance and knocked on the door, requesting an audience. The king, greatly delighted, greeted the risk and paid him due salutation. He invited the risk to sit on a precious seat and said to him, “I did not expect that you, Great Ṛṣi, would condescend to favor me with your presence today.” The risk said, “When I was sitting at ease in the heavenly palace I suddenly saw the heavenly beings dancing for joy. I asked them why they were so exhilarated. They said, ‘We should inform you, Great Ṛṣi, that the first lady of King Śuddhodana of the Śākya clan in Jambudvīpa has given birth to a son today, who will attain perfect enlightenment and omniscient wisdom.’ Because I have heard this information, I have come to see him. I regret that I am getting old and I will not be able to hear his holy teachings.”

At the south gate of the city there is a stupa marking the place where the Prince Siddhārtha wrestled with other Śākyas in a contest and threw an elephant [over the city moat]. A versatile youth, the prince was peerless and had no equal. When King Śuddhodana [heard that his son] was on his way back home in a cheerful mood, he asked his mahout to drive an elephant out of the city to greet him. Devadatta, always boastful of his strength, was then coming into the city and asked the mahout, “You have caparisoned the elephant nicely; who is going to ride it?” The mahout said, “Prince Siddhārtha is coming home. I am going out to serve him.” Devadatta, irritated by these words, drew up next to the elephant, struck its forehead, and kicked its abdomen. The animal fell to the ground and its body obstructed the road, creating a hindrance in the way, but nobody could remove it. Later, Nanda came and inquired, “Who killed this elephant?” “Devadatta,” was the reply.

Nanda then pulled the dead elephant aside to the edge of the road. When the

prince arrived, he also asked, “Who is so wicked as to have killed this elephant?” to which was replied, “It was Devadatta who killed this elephant to blockade the city gate and Nanda pulled it aside to clear the way.” The prince then lifted up the dead elephant and flung it across the moat. When the corpse of the elephant fell to the ground it made a great pit, called by tradition the Pit of the Falling Elephant. In the shrine beside the pit is a statue of the prince. Another shrine beside it marks the site of the bedchamber of the prince’s consort, where statues of Yaśodharā and Rāhula are kept. In the shrine beside the palace is a statue [of the prince] in the posture of learning; this was the old site of the prince’s schoolroom.

At the southeast corner of the city there is a shrine in which is a picture of the prince riding on a white horse galloping in the air. This is the place where he went out over the city wall. Outside the four gates of the city, there are four shrines, separately keeping the statues of an aged man, a sick man, a dead man, and a śramaṇa. These were the places where the prince witnessed on a pleasure trip the sorrowful sights by which he was moved to disgust at worldly life, at which awakening he ordered the driver to turn his carriage back and head for home.

Going southward for more than fifty li from the city, I reached an old city with a stupa. This was the natal city of Krakucchanda Buddha at the time of the bhadrakalpa when the human life span was sixty thousand years. Not far to the south is a stupa marking the place where this buddha met his father after attaining full enlightenment. Inside the stupa at the southeast of the city the remains of Krakucchanda are contained, and in front of the stupa is a stone pillar over thirty feet high with a carving of a lion on top; the events of his nirvana are inscribed on its sides. This pillar was erected by King Aśoka.

Going northeast for more than thirty li from the city of Krakucchanda Buddha I reached a great ancient city with a stupa. This was the city where Kanakamuni Buddha was born in the bhadrakalpa at the time when the human life span was forty thousand years. Not far to the northeast is a stupa marking the place where this buddha converted his father after attaining full enlightenment. Further to the north is a stupa containing Kanakamuni’s remains. In front of the stupa is a stone pillar over twenty feet high with the carving of a lion on top; the events of his nirvana are inscribed on its sides. This pillar was erected by King Aśoka.

More than forty li to the northeast of the city is a stupa that marks the spot where Prince [Siddhārtha] once sat under the shade of a tree, watching farmers plowing the land, and practiced meditation through which he became free of the passions. King Śuddhodana saw the prince sitting in meditation under the shade of the tree, and he noticed that the shadow of the tree never moved even as the sunlight changed the direction. Reminded that the prince was a saintly person, the king treasured and respected him all the more.

In the northwest of the city are hundreds and thousands of stupas built at the place where the Śākyas were slaughtered. After overcoming the Śākyas King Virūḍhaka captured ninety-nine million nine hundred thousand Śākya people and massacred them all. The corpses were piled up like haystacks and blood flowed into a pool. The corpses were collected and buried amid the panic of heavenly beings and the terror in human minds. 901c

To the southwest of the place where the Śākyas were slaughtered are four small stupas built at the spots where four Śākya men resisted the [invading] army. When King Prasenajit first succeeded to the throne he sought a matrimonial alliance with the Śākya clan. The Śākyas despised him as someone who was not of the same caste and, with pompous ceremony, they deceitfully gave him a slave girl to be his bride. King Prasenajit made the girl his chief queen and their son was King Virūḍhaka. Virūḍhaka wished to pursue his studies under the guidance of his maternal uncle. When he came to the south of the city he saw a new lecture hall and went in to take a rest. Hearing this, the Śākyas chased him while out chastising him, “How dare you, the son of a slave woman, stay in this hall?” The hall had been built by the Śākyas for the Buddha’s use. After ascending the throne, Virūḍhaka made up his mind to avenge the previous insult and stationed an army at this place. There were four Śākya men there, who were plowing the land, and they resisted and dispersed the invading army. Then the four men entered the city but their clans people thought that, as the descendants of a universal monarch and the offspring of a dharmarāja, should not have dared to commit violence and so complacently kill others. Because they had blemished the clan’s good name they were expelled from the clan and banished, exiled to the Snow Mountains in the north. One of the four Śākyas became the king of Udyāna, one the king of Bāmīyāna, one the king of Himatala, and one the king of Shangmi. They handed down their dominions to their descendants from generation to generation without interruption.

Three or four li to the south of the city, in a banyan wood, is a stupa built by King Aśoka. This was the place where Śākya Tathāgata, returning home after having gained full enlightenment, saw his father and preached the Dharma for him. Knowing that the Tathāgata had subdued the army of Māra, the Evil One, and was traveling around to edify the people, King Śuddho dana was eager to see him and pay homage to him. So he dispatched a messenger to invite the Tathāgata with these words: “Formerly you promised to return to your native country after becoming a buddha. Your words are still ringing in my ears and it is time now for you to turn your steps toward home.” The messenger came into the Buddha’s presence and related the king’s message. The Tathāgata told him, “After seven days I will return to my home country.” The messenger returned and reported this message to the king. So King Śuddhodana ordered his ministers and the people to sprinkle water and sweep the roads and streets and prepare flowers and incense ready for use. Accompanied by his ministers, he went out to a distance of forty li to wait for the Buddha’s arrival.

At that time the Tathāgata and his retinue of disciples, protected by the eight diamond (vajra) guardians and with the four heavenly kings as vanguards, with Indra and the celestial beings of the kāmadhātu (realm of sensual desire) attending on his left and Brahmā and the celestial beings of the rūpa dhātu (realm of pure form) attending on his right, and with all the bhikṣus following behind, walked through the air to his home country. In the assembly the Buddha was like the moon among the stars; his austerity moved all the three realms of the world and his radiance surpassed the light of the seven luminaries. After the king and his ministers had worshiped the Buddha they all returned to the capital city, and the Buddha stayed at Banyan Monastery.

Not far from the monastery is a stupa marking the place where the Tathāgata once sat under a big tree, facing east, and accepted the gift of a robe sewn with golden thread offered by his aunt. There is another stupa nearby, built at the place where the Tathāgata converted eight princes and five hundred Śākya clans people.

Inside the east gate of the city, on the left side of the road, is a stupa at the place where Prince Siddhārtha practiced various skills and attainments. Outside the gate is an Īśvara deva temple in which a stone image of Īśvara in the posture of standing up is enshrined. This was the temple that the prince entered when he was in his swaddling clothes. When King Śuddhodana brought the prince home from Lumbinī he passed by this temple on the way and said, “This deva temple often manifests spiritual responses and is sure to answer the prayers of Śākya children. The prince should be sent in to worship the deva.” The nurse brought the prince into the temple and the stone image of the deva stood up to greet him; when the prince left the deva image resumed its seat.

Outside the south gate of the city, on the left side of the road, is a stupa at the place where the prince, competing with other Śākyas in the arts of war, shot at iron drums. At a distance of more than thirty li to the southeast from here is a small stupa, beside which is a spring flowing with clear water. While competing with other Śākyas in the skill of archery, the prince drew his bow, and, as the arrow left the bow it pierced through the surface of the drums and hit the ground, sinking into the earth up to its fletching. The spring of pure water formed at that spot, by tradition called Arrow Spring. When people are sick they drink the water or bathe in it and in most cases they are cured. People travel from distant places to collect the clay of the spring and make it into a paste, which is applied on the forehead whenever they have any ailment. As the clay is protected by spirits and deities it has a healing effect in most cases.

Going northeast from the Arrow Spring for eighty or ninety li I reached Lumbinī Wood, where there is a bathing pool full of transparent water, with flowers of different descriptions spreading all over the place. Twenty-four or twenty-five paces to the north of the pool is an aśoka tree, now withered; this was the place where the Bodhisattva was born into the world. The Bodhisattva was born on the eighth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha, corresponding to the eighth day of the third month in our calendar, though the Sthavira sect holds that it was on the fifteenth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the third month in our calendar. Further east is a stupa built by King Aśoka at the place where two dragons bathed the [newborn] prince. After he had been born the Bodhisattva walked seven steps unaided to each of the four quarters and announced, “In the heavens above and on the earth below, I am the sole Honored One! From now on I shall have no more rebirth.” Under each step a large lotus flower sprang up from the earth. Two dragons appeared in the air, one emitting 902b cool water and the other warm water, to bathe him.

To the east of the stupa of bathing the prince are two lucid springs, beside which are two stupas built at the place where two dragons emerged from the earth. After the Bodhisattva was born his relatives and clans people hurried to get the water to wash themselves, and in front of Lady Mahāmāyā two springs, one cold and one hot, gushed out water for them bathe in. A stupa at the south marks the place where Indra received the Bodhisattva with both hands when the Bodhisattva was born. Indra knelt down to catch him in a piece of wondrous celestial cloth. Next are four stupas marking the place where the four heavenly kings carried the Bodhisattva. When the Bodhisattva was born from the right side of his mother the four heavenly kings caught him in a piece of golden-colored fine cotton and placed him on a small gold table, which they carried into the presence of his mother, saying “It is truly a joyous event for celebration that Your Ladyship has given birth to such a blessed son. Even the heavenly beings are delighted, not to speak of the human beings of the earth.”

Not far from the stupa where the four heavenly kings carried the prince there used to be a great stone pillar erected by King Aśoka, with the figure of a horse on top. It was later broken in the middle by a thunderbolt caused by an evil dragon, and half of it fell onto the ground. Beside the broken pillar is a rivulet flowing toward the east, called Oil River by the local people. After Lady Mahāmāyā had given birth [to the prince] the heavenly beings produced a pool of lucent and pure water at this place for the lady to bathe herself, so as to wash off the soil and dust. It has now become [an oily stream of] water.

From here going eastward for more than two hundred li through a wild jungle, I reached the country of Rāma[grāma] (in the domain of Central India). The country of Rāma has been deserted for many years and it has no boundary marks. The towns and villages are in ruins and are sparsely populated. To the southeast of the old capital city is a brick stupa less than one hundred feet high, built by a former king of this country. When the Tathāgata had entered nirvana the king of this country obtained a portion of his relic bones, which he brought back to his own country; he built this stupa for paying homage to his share of the relics. It shows spiritual manifestations from time to time and often emits a divine light.

Beside the stupa is a clear pool from which a dragon often emerges in the shape of a snake to worship the stupa, circumambulating it from left to right. Wild elephants come in groups to pick flowers and scatter them on the stupa, which has been under spiritual protection without cease. When King Aśoka was constructing more stupas for the dissemination of the Buddha’s relic bones, he opened up the stupas formerly built in seven countries to take out the relic bones [for redistribution]. When he came to this country and was about to start working [on the stupa], the dragon of the pool, fearing that he might be deprived of the relics, appeared as a brahman and halted the king’s elephant, saying, “Your Majesty’s goodwill extends to the buddha-dharma and you have widely cultivated the field of blessedness. I venture to invite you to deign to visit my abode.” The king said, “Where is your home? Is it 902c far away or nearby?” The brahman said, “I am the dragon king of this pool. As Your Majesty wishes to perform superior deeds of blessedness, I have ventured to come and beg for an interview.” At his invitation, the king entered the dragon’s palace and, after sitting for a while, the dragon said, “Due to my past evil deeds I have been born in the shape of a dragon. I make offerings to the Buddha’s relics in the hope that I may eliminate my sins and faults. I wish for you to come see and worship the relics in person.” Seeing the dragon’s paraphernalia for worshiping the relics, the king was awed by their splendor and said, “These utensils for making offerings are not to be seen in the human world.” The dragon said, “If that is so, I pray that you will not demolish

them.” Thinking that he was not equal to the dragon in power, King Aśoka relinquished the idea of opening up that stupa. A mound marks the spot where he came out of the pool.

Not far from the stupa is a monastery with few monks. It is a quiet and clean place under the management of a śrāmaṇera (novice). Monks coming from distant places are well received with hospitality and invited to stay for three days to receive offerings of the four monastic requisites. The local people say that once a bhikkhu came with some fellow monks from a distant place to worship the stupa and they saw a group of elephants bustling about, weeding grass with their tusks and sprinkling water with their trunks, each of them holding different kinds of flowers to make offerings. At this sight the monks were deeply moved and sighed with pity. One of the bhikṣus relinquished his position as a fully ordained monk in order to stay behind [as a śrāmaṇera] to attend the stupa. He said farewell to the other monks, saying, “I am lucky to have become a member, though an incompetent one, of the community of monks. Through the passage of time I have made no achievement in my spiritual practice. As this stupa contains the Buddha’s relics, the elephants are inspired by his holy virtues to come to keep the place clean. I am willing to stay here to work together with them. If I can spend the rest of my life here I will be very fortunate indeed.” The other monks told him, “It is a good idea and we are so ignorant as not to have thought of it ourselves. Please take care of yourself and do not fail in your superior deed.”

Having parted from his companions, the śrāmaṇera repeated his sincere vow and lived alone happily with the intention of living in this manner until the end of his life. He built a thatched hut and channeled water into a tank. He plucked seasonal flowers [as offerings] and kept the place clean by sprinkling water and sweeping the ground, dong this for many years in succession without changing his mind. The kings of the neighboring countries heard about him [and felt] deep respect; they vied with one another to donate money and valuables for the construction of a monastery and invited the śrāmaṇera to supervise the monastic affairs. Since then the abbot of this monastery has always been a śrāmaṇera, in memory of the original institution.

Going east from Śrāmaṇera Monastery for more than a hundred li through a big forest, I reached a great stupa built by King Aśoka at the place where 903a Prince Siddhārtha halted after he had gone out over the city wall, taken off his precious garments, untied his necklace, and asked his servant, Chandaka, to return to the palace. The prince went over the city wall at midnight and reached this place at daybreak, and, having fulfilled his cherished desire, he said to himself, “This is the place where I escape from prison, unfasten the fetters, and unyoke myself at last!” He removed the maṇi pearl from his crown and said to his servant, “Take this pearl and go home to inform my father, the king, that my present retirement to a distant place is not an inconsiderate departure from home; I have done so because I wish to cut off what is impermanent and abandon all that causes pain and distress.” Chandaka (formerly called Cheli erroneously) said, “How can I have the mind to drive the empty carriage home?” The prince consoled the servant with good words, and Chandaka became awakened and returned home.

On the east of the stupa where the carriage was sent home there is a jambu tree (Eugenia jambolana) whose branches and leaves have withered, but the decayed trunk is still there. Beside the tree is a small stupa marking the place where the prince changed his remaining precious garments for a deerskin robe. Although he had already cut off his hair, changed his clothes, and taken off his pearl necklace, the prince still had his royal robe with him. He thought, “This robe is too luxurious; what shall I do for a change [of clothes]?” At that moment a heavenly being of Śuddhavāsa (“Heaven of Pure Abode”) appeared as a hunter, wearing a deerskin robe, holding a bow and carrying some arrows. The prince, holding out his robe, said to the hunter, “I wish to exchange this [clothing] for yours. Will you kindly consent?” The hunter agreed.  The prince then took off his upper garment and handed it to the hunter, who resumed his heavenly form and flew away through the air with the garment he had bartered.

Not far away from the place where Prince Siddhārtha changed his clothes is a stupa built by King Aśoka at the spot where the prince had his hair shaved off. The prince asked for a razor from Chandaka and cut off his own locks, which Indra received and brought to his heavenly palace for worship. At that time a celestial being of the Heaven of Pure Abode appeared as a barber, approaching slowly with a razor in his hand. The prince asked him, “Can you shave my head? Please give me the tonsure.” Accordingly the transformed figure shaved his head.

The exact time when the prince left home by going over the city wall, in order to become a monk, is uncertain. Some say it was when the Bodhisattva was nineteen years old, others say he was twenty-nine years old at the time. It is said that Prince Siddhārtha renounced home on the eighth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha, corresponding to the eighth day of the third month of our calendar; or that it was on the fifteenth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the third month of our calendar.

From the stupa where the prince had his head shaved, going southeast for one hundred eighty or ninety li through a wilderness, I reached a banyan grove in which there is a stupa over thirty feet high. When the Tathāgata entered nirvana and his relics were distributed, the brahmans who had not obtained a share of the relics collected the ashes and charcoal from the ground of the niṣṭapana (meaning ‘‘burning,” formerly known as shewei by mistake) and brought them home; they built this holy reliquary for worship. Since

then it has manifested many miracls and most of the sick people who have prayed for recovery here have received a response.

In the old monastery beside the ash and charcoal stupa are places where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. On both sides of the old monastery are several hundred stupas, among which a large one was built by King Aśoka. Although its lofty foundation has collapsed it is still over one hundred feet in height.

From here going northeast I proceeded through a great forest along a rough and dangerous road with perilous obstacles all along the way. Mountain oxen and wild elephants, as well as brigands and hunters, watch for travelers and constantly do harm to them.

Coming out of this forest I reached the country of Kuśinagara (in the domain of Central India). The city wall of the capital of the country of Kuśinagara is in ruins and the towns and villages are deserted. The brick foundations of the city wall are more than ten li in circuit; there are very few inhabitants and the streets and lanes are in desolation. At the northeast corner of the original city is a stupa built by King Aśoka at the old residence of Cunda (formerly mis transcribed as Xuntuo). In the residence there is a well that was dug at the time when a meal was prepared for the Buddha. Although the well has been there for many long years the water is still clear and sweet.

At a place three or four li to the northwest of the city I crossed the Ajitavatī River (“Unsurpassed,” the name in common use, mistaken for the Airāvatī River in olden times; in the texts it is known as Hiraṇyavatī [“Possessing Gold”] River). Not far from the west bank of the river is Śāla Grove. The śāla tree is similar to an oak, with a greenish-white bark and very glossy leaves. Four of the trees in the grove are unusually tall and mark the place where the Tathāgata entered nirvana. In a large brick temple there is a statue of the Tathāgata in the posture of entering nirvana, lying down with his head toward the north. Beside the temple is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Although the foundation has collapsed it is still over two hundred feet high. In front of it is a stone pillar on which is inscribed a a record of the event of the Tathāgata’s nirvana, but no date is mentioned in the record. It is said in previous record, however, that the Buddha entered parinirvāṇa (complete cessation of rebirth) at the age of eighty, on the fifteenth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the third month in our calendar. According to the tradition of the Sarvāstivāda school, the Buddha entered parinirvāṇa on the eighth day of the second half of the month of Kārttika, corresponding to the eighth day of the ninth month in our calendar. The different schools hold variant views concerning the time elapsed since the Buddha’s nirvana; some say it has been more than one thousand two hundred years, others say one thousand three hundred, or one thousand five hundred, or more than nine hundred but less than one thousand.

Not far from the temple is a stupa marking the place where the Tathāgata put out a fire when, in a previous life, in the course of cultivating the bodhisattva deeds, he was born as a pheasant. There once was a great forest at this 903c place and the animals and birds lived in caves and nests. One day a gale blew hard just as a fire broke out and burned fiercely. A pheasant, having pity on the other creatures, flapped its wings in a stream and flew up into the air to sprinkle water over the fire. At that moment Indra lowered his head and said to the pheasant, “Why are you so foolishly working so hard with your wings, to no avail? The great fire has just broken out and the whole forest is ablaze. How can you put it out with the effort of your feeble body?” The pheasant said, “Who is it that is speaking to me?” Indra said, “I am Indra.” The pheasant said, “If you are Indra, a being possessing great power of blessedness, you may achieve anything you wish. To relieve creatures from disaster and rescue those who are in trouble are as easy for you as looking at the palm of your hand. Yet now you say that I am laboring without effect. Whose will be blamed?

The fire burns fiercely; I cannot talk with you any more!” The bird then flew vigorously to the stream to fetch more water. Indra then scooped up water with his hands and sprinkled it over the forest. The fire was quenched, the smoke vanished, and the animals were saved from the flames. Therefore it is called the Stupa of Fire-fighting.

Not far from the place where the pheasant put out a fire is a stupa marking the spot where the Tathāgata, born as a deer in a previous life when in the course of cultivating the bodhisattva deeds, saved creatures. In the remote past there was a great forest at this place. A conflagration spread in the wilderness and the birds and animals were trapped and in a dangerous plight, with the impediments of a rapid stream in front and a violent fire pressing hard from the back. A few of them were not drowned in the stream and escaped death. A deer, having pity on the other animals, strained itself to stretch its body across the stream in order to save the others from drowning. Despite the pain caused by its injured skin and broken bones, the deer endured its fatigue and pain until the last animal, a lame hare, had crossed over and been rescued. Exhausted, the deer fell into the stream and drowned. The heavenly beings collected its carcass and built a stupa for it.

Not far to the west of the place where the deer rescued creatures from drowning is a stupa marking the spot where Subhadra (known as Shanxian, “Good Sage,” formerly mis transcribed as Subatuoluo) entered nirvana. Subha dra, originally a Brahmanical teacher, was a wise man of one hundred and twenty years of age. When he heard that the Buddha was about to enter nirvana he came to the twin [śāla] trees and asked Ānanda, “As the Buddha, the World-honored One, is about to enter nirvana, may I ask him to solve the doubts I have in my mind?” Ānanda said, “The Buddha is about to enter nirvana; please do not disturb him.” [Subhadra] said, “I have heard that we rarely have a chance to be born at a time when a buddha is living in the world, and that we cannot often hear the right Dharma. I am afraid I will have no one else to resolve my deep doubts.” Subhadra then came into the Buddha’s presence and asked him, “There are different groups of self-styled teachers who have variant Dharmas to guide the world here below. Do you know them all, Gautama (formerly known as Qutan in an erroneous and abridged form)?” The Buddha said, “I have made a profound study of them all” and he then gave a description [of the different doctrines]. After having heard the Buddha’s words, Subhadra purified his mind with faith and understanding and asked for permission to become a fully ordained Buddhist monk. The Tathāgata asked him, “Are you able to become a Buddhist monk? The heterodox disciples who wish to lead the life of purity have to go through probation for four years during which their demeanor and character are observed. If they are found to be quiet in behavior and honest in speech, they can then be admitted into my  904a order to lead a life of purity. It all depends on one’s effort; there is no difficulty.” Subhadra said, “World-honored One, you are so kind and sympathetic that you are impartial in saving living beings. Through four years’ probation, the three sorts of deeds (of body, speech, and mind) may be straightened in good order.”

The Buddha said, “As I have already said, it all depends on one’s effort.”

Subhadra then became a monk and received full ordination. He diligently cultivated himself for both mental and physical strength. A moment later he cleared his mind of doubts concerning the Dharma and tried to achieve personal realization. Shortly after dusk, he actually attained athwartship with all the passions extirpated and the pure life established. Because he could not bear seeing the Buddha enter mahānirvāṇa, he entered the samādhi (trance) of the element of fire and manifested supernatural powers and then he himself entered nirvana before the Buddha. He became the Tathāgata’s last disciple but died before him. In a previous life Subhadra was the lame hare, the last animal to be rescued [by the courageous deer].

Beside the spot where Subhadra entered nirvana is a stupa at the place where Vajrapāṇi (“Holder of the Vajra”) fell into a swoon. The great sympathetic World-honored One, having completed his task of edifying living beings according to their capacities and for their benefit, entered the blissful state of nirvana at the twin [śāla] trees, lying down with his head toward the north. The deity Vajrapāṇi, (alias) the warrior Guhyapati (“Lord of the Mysteries”), having seen the Buddha enter nirvana, cried sorrowfully, “The Tathāgata has forsaken me and entered mahānirvāṇa. I have no place in which to take refuge and no one to protect me. It is just as if a poisoned arrow has deeply struck me and a fire of distress fiercely burns me.” He dropped his diamond (vajra) club and fell into a swoon. After a long while he stood up and said to the others, “In the great sea of birth and death, who will be our boat and oars? In the long night of ignorance, who will be our lamp and torch?”

Beside the place where Vajrapāṇi fell into a swoon there is a stupa where [the remains of] the Tathāgata were venerated for seven days after his nirvana. When the Tathāgata was about to enter nirvana a bright light shone everywhere and human and heavenly beings gathered together in grief. They said to one another, “The great enlightened World-honored One is now about to enter nirvana. Living beings will come to the end of blessedness and the world will have no one on whom to depend.” The Tathāgata, lying on his right side on a lion bed, told the gathering, “Do not say that the Tathāgata has eventually entered nirvana, as the dharma body [of a buddha] is immutable and free from all changes. You should ward off indolence and try to gain liberation as quickly as possible.” The bhikṣus and others wept sadly.

At that time Aniruddha (formerly mis transcribed as Anilü) told the bhikṣus, “Stop, stop! Grieve no more! The heavenly beings will reproach you and ridicule you!” After the Malla people had made offerings to the remains, they wished to carry the golden coffin to the fumeral ghat for burning. Aniruddha said to them, “Wait a moment! The heavenly beings wish to keep it here for seven days in order to make offerings to it.” The heavenly beings, holding exquisite celestial flowers, flew through the air and chanted praise of the Buddha’s holy virtues. Every one of them worked with utmost sincerity to make offerings [to the Buddha’s remains].

Beside the place where the coffin was lodged is a stupa at the place where

Lady Mahāmāyā lamented the Buddha’s demise. After the Tathāgata had

entered nirvana and his remains had been laid in the coffin, Aniruddha ascended to the heaven to inform Lady Mahāmāyā, saying, “The great holy King of the Dharma has entered nirvana.” Hearing this news, Mahāmāyā was choked with sobs and fainted. [When she had recovered her consciousness] she went with the heavenly beings to the twin [śāla] trees, where she saw [the Buddha’s] saṃghāṭi (double robe), alms bowl, and pewter staff. She stroked these articles, weeping piteously, until she fainted again, and when she regained her voice she said, “Human and heavenly beings have come to the end of their blessedness and the Eye of the World has disappeared. Now these things are without an owner!” By the Tathāgata’s saintly power the coffin opened by itself. The Buddha emitted a bright light, sat up with his hands joined palm to palm, and consoled his compassionate mother for having come down from a far distance [to see him], saying, “Such is the law of all

things. Please do not be overwhelmed by excessive grief.” With a sorrowful mind, Ānanda asked the Buddha, “What shall I say when people in the future ask me about today’s events?” [The Buddha replied,] “You may say that after the Buddha’s nirvana his compassionate mother came down from the heavenly palace to the twin [śāla] trees. As a lesson to unfilial people, the Tathāgata sat up in the golden coffin and preached the Dharma [for his mother] with his hands joined palm to palm.”

More than three hundred paces across the river at the north of the city there was a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata’s body was cremated. The earth is a dark yellow color and the soil is mixed with ashes and charcoal. If one prays earnestly he may obtain śarīras (relic bones) at this place. After the Tathāgata had entered nirvana human and heavenly beings, lamenting sorrowfully, made a coffin out of the seven precious substances and enshrouded his body in a thousand layers of cotton cloth. Holding incense and flowers, as well as banners and canopies, the Mallas pulled the hearse in a procession, some at the front and some following behind the coffin, to the north of Gold River. They prepared a pyre with sufficient fragrant oil and sweet-scented wood and set fire to it. Two layers of the shroud, the innermost one next to the body and the outer one, were not burned. When the people distributed the śarīras they found that the hair and nails were neatly intact.

Beside the place of cremation is the spot where the Tathāgata showed his feet to Mahākāśyapa. After the Tathāgata’s coffin had been laid down and the pyre of fragrant wood had already been piled up, it could not be kindled, to the astonishment of the assembly. Aniruddha said, “It is merely waiting for Kāśyapa.” At that moment, Mahākāśyapa and his five hundred disciples came from the mountains to the city of Kuśinagara, and he asked Ānanda, “May I have a look at the World-honored One?” Ānanda said, “His body is wrapped in a thousand layers of cotton cloth and laid in a double coffin, and fragrant wood has already been piled up for the cremation.” At that time [the body of] the Tathāgata lying in the coffin stretched out its feet. When Kāśyapa noticed that the wheel sign on the soles of the Buddha’s feet had a strange color, he asked Ānanda, “Why is this so?” [Ānanda] said, “At the moment when the Buddha entered nirvana human and heavenly beings wept piteously, and their tears dyed his soles this strange color.” Then Kāśyapa paid homage to the coffin by circumambulating it while chanting praises [of the Buddha], and the fragrant wood spontaneously burst into huge flames. Thus after his nirvana the Tathāgata thrice appeared from his coffin: first, he stretched his arm to ask Ānanda to repair the road; second, he sat up to preach the Dharma for his mother; and last, he showed his feet to Mahākāśyapa.

Beside the spot where the Buddha showed his feet is a stupa built by King Aśoka at the place where the eight kings shared the relics. In front of the stupa is a stone pillar on which [a description of] the event is inscribed. After the Buddha’s body was cremated after his nirvana, the kings of eight countries arrived with their four divisions of troops and dispatched the straight-natured brahman to tell the Mallas of Kuśinagara, “As the teacher of human and heavenly beings has entered nirvana in this country, we have come here from afar to share his relics.” The Mallas said, “The Tathāgata was in our country when we were bereaved of the Guide of the World and lost the father of living beings, so naturally we should keep the relics of the Tathāgata for worship. You will receive nothing despite the weariness you endured on your journey.” Since the kings’ solicitation was not granted, they said again, “If you do not comply with our polite request we wil consider using force.” The straightnatured brahman warned them, “Just think it over! The great sympathetic World-honored One patiently cultivated blessedness and good deeds for numerous kalpas in the past. I think that all of you have heard this. It is inappropriate for you to fight each other. Since the relics are in this country they should be divided into eight equal portions, and each of you can have a share for worship. What is the use of resorting to force?” The Mallas listened to his words but when they were about to divide the relics into eight equal portions, Indra said to the kings, “The heavenly beings also have a right to share a portion of the relics. Do not compete for a share on the strength of your might.” Then the nāga kings Anavatapta, Mucilinda, and Elāpattra also made a proposal, saying, “Do not forget about us. As far as strength is concerned, none of you is our equal!” The straight-natured brahman said, “Do not quarrel! We should all share the relics.” The relics were then divided into three portions, one for the heavenly beings, one for the nāgas, and one for the human world, and the third portion was further subdivided into eight parts and allotted to the eight kings. The heavenly beings, nāgas, and kings were all deeply moved.

Going southwest for more than two hundred li from the stupa of the division of the relics I reached a great town. There was a brahman of enormous wealth, who was quite different from other brahmans. He was learned in the five vidyās (“knowledges”) and venerated the Triple Gem. He constructed a monastery, decorated with various kinds of jewels, next to his residence, and provided all sorts of daily requisites. Whenever monks traveled by way of this monastery he always earnestly invited them to stay and receive offerings for one night or up to seven days. Later, when King Śaśāṅka persecuted the buddha-dharma, no groups of monks came this way for many years and the brahman regretfully cherished the memory of them.

One day he was taking a walk and saw a śrāmaṇa with heavy eyebrows and white hair, approaching with a pewter staff in hand. He hurried to greet the monk and inquired where he had come from and where he was going, and invited him to the monastery to receive various kinds of offerings. The 905a following morning he offered the monk some gruel cooked in pure milk. As soon as the monk tasted the gruel he put down the bowl and sighed heavily. The brahman who was serving the monk with food knelt down and said, “You grant benefit to the people according to circumstances and have come to favor me with your presence. Did you not sleep well last night? Or is the gruel unpalatable?” The monk said with regret, “I am sorry that the blessedness of living beings is decreasing. Let us not talk about it now. I shall tell you something after the meal.” When breakfast was over the monk tidied his robe and made ready to depart. The brahman said, “You promised that you would say something. Why do you not say it now?” The monk told him, “I did not forget about it but it is not easy for me to say it. It might cause suspicion. If you insist on hearing what I have to say I shall tell you in brief. I sighed not because I disliked the gruel but because for several hundred years I have not tasted such a flavor. When the Tathāgata was living in the world I used to follow him, serving as an attendant at Jetavana Temple in the city of Rājagṛha to wash his eating bowl in a pure stream. I also bathed, rinsed my mouth, and washed my hands and face [in that stream]. What a pity that the pure milk of today is less tasty than the plain water of yore! This is because the blessedness of human and heavenly beings is decreasing.” The brahman said, “In that case, great virtuous one, you must have seen the Buddha in person.” The monk said, “Yes. Have you heard about Rāhula, the son of the Buddha? I am Rāhula. In order to protect the right Dharma I did not enter nirvana.” Having said this, the monk suddenly disappeared.

The brahman then daubed the room where the monk had spent the night with incense and swept it clean. An image of the monk was installed in the room in a solemn manner and was worshiped just as if the monk was present. Going through a great forest for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Bārāṇasī (formerly called the country of Boluonai by mistake, in the domain of Central India).

End of Fascicle VI of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

Fascicle VII

Five Countries, fromBārāṇasī to Nepāla

1. The Country of Bārāṇasī                         4. The Country of Vṛji

2. The Country of Garjanapati                     5. The Country of Nepāla

3. The Country of Vaiśālī

The country of Bārāṇasī is more than four thousand li in circuit and the capital city, with the Ganges River on the west, is eighteen or nineteen li long and 905b five or six li wide. The houses in the lanes and streets of the city are close together and it is densely populated. The inhabitants are enormously wealthy and their houses are full of valuable goods. The people are mild and courteous in nature and esteem learning by custom. Most of them believe in heretical theories and few people venerate the buddha-dharma. The climate is temperate and the cereal crops are abundant. The fruit trees grow luxuriantly and the vegetation is rich. There are over thirty monasteries with more than three thousand monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Hinayana Saṃmitīya school. There are more than one hundred deva temples with over ten thousand heretical followers. Most of them worship Maheśvara. Some of them cut their hair while others keep it in a topknot. They go naked without any dress and smear their bodies with ash. They rigorously practice austerities, seeking freedom from birth and death.

Inside the great city there are twenty deva temples, of which the sanctuaries are built with carved stone and ornamental wood on terraces arranged in tiers. Luxuriant trees cast shade over each other and clear streams flow throughout. There is a brass statue of the deity, less than one hundred feet tall, depicted in a solemn manner with a stately appearance as if it were alive.

To the northeast of the great city and on the west bank of the Varaṇā River is a stupa more than one hundred feet high that was built by King Aśoka. In front of it is a pillar of green stone as smooth as a mirror and the Tathāgata’s image is often visible on the lustrous surface.

Going to the northeast of the Varaṇā River for more than ten li, I reached Deer Park Monastery, which consists of eight divisions all within one enclosing wall. There are lofty halls and storied pavilions most splendidly constructed, with one thousand five hundred monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Hinayana Saṃmitīya school. Within the great enclosure there is a temple over two hundred feet high with a gilt āmra (mango) fruit carved in relief on top. The foundation and steps are made of stone, while the niches arranged in rows are of brick. Around the niches there are one hundred steps, and in each niche is enshrined a gilt image of the Buddha. Inside the temple there is a life-size brass image of the Buddha in the posture of turning the wheel of the Dharma.

To the northeast of the temple is a stone stupa built by King Aśoka. Although the foundation has collapsed the remaining trunk is still one hundred feet high. In front is a stone pillar more than seventy feet tall, as smooth as jade and as reflective as a mirror. With earnest prayer one may see various shadowy pictures in the surface, and sometimes  good or evil omens can also be seen This was the place where the Tathāgata, after having attained full enlightenment, first turned the wheel of the Dharma. Not far from here a stupa marks the spot where Ājñāta-Kauṇḍinya and the others went when they saw that the Bodhisattva had abandoned the practice of austerities. They refused to be his attendants and guards and came to this place to practice meditation by themselves. The stupa beside it was the place where five hundred pratyekabuddhas entered nirvana together. There are also three other stupas marking sites where the three past buddhas sat and walked up and down.

The stupa located beside the place where the three past buddhas walked up and down marks the spot where Maitreya (being a surname, meaning “Compassion” in Chinese, formerly called Mile in erroneous abbreviation) Bodhisattva received the prediction of his attainment of Buddhahood. Once on Vulture Peak, near the city of Rājagṛha, the Tathāgata told the bhikṣus, “In the future, when the human life span will be eighty thousand years, there will be in this flat land of Jambudvīpa a son of a brahman of the Maitreya family, with a golden-colored body, shining brightly. He will relinquish his home to achieve full enlightenment and preach the Dharma widely for the living beings in three assemblies. Those who will be saved by him are beings who have cultivated the deeds of blessedness according to the teachings I will have left

to them. Beacuse they deeply and wholeheartedly venerate the Triple Gem they will receive edification and guidance and attain sainthood and emancipation, whether they are laypeople or monks and whether they observe or violate the disciplinary rules. In the three preaching assemblies those who have followed my bequeathed Dharma will be saved first, and then good friends who have the cause to be saved will be edified.”

When Maitreya Bodhisattva heard what the Buddha had said, he stood up from his seat and said to the Buddha, “I wish to be that Maitreya, the World-honored One!” The Tathāgata told him, “As you have said, you will achieve that fruit. What I have said above is intended for your edification.”

To the west of the place where Maitreya Bodhisattva received his prediction is a stupa marking the spot where Śākya Bodhisattva received his prophecy. At the time when the human life span was twenty thousand years in the bhadra kalpa, Kāśyapa Buddha emerged in the world and turned the wonderful wheel of the Dharma to edify living beings. He prophesied the future of Prabhā pāla Bodhisattva, saying, “This bodhisattva will become a buddha with the name of Śākyamuni in the future, when the human life span is one hundred years.”

Not far to the south of the place where Śākya Bodhisattva received his prediction is a site where the four past buddhas walked up and down. It is over fifty paces long and about seven feet high, built of piled-up bluestone, on which there is an image of the Tathāgata in the posture of walking. It is unusually exquisite with an appearance of solemnity, and with a tuft of hair specially growing on the fleshy protuberance. Its spiritual features are apparent and its divine manifestation is testified. Inside the enclosure there are numerous sacred sites and the temples and stupas number in the several hundreds. I have only cited two or three of them; it is difficult for me to give a detailed description of them all.

To the west of the enclosure of the monastery is a pond of pure water more than two hundred paces in circuit in which the Tathāgata often bathed. Further to the west is another big pond, one hundred eighty paces in circuit, where the Tathāgata used to wash his alms bowl. Further to the north is a pond one hundred fifty paces in circuit where the Tathāgata used to wash his robes. There are dragons living in all three ponds. The water is deep and tastes sweet. It is clear and limpid, neither increasing nor decreasing. If one washes in these ponds with an arrogant mind he will usually be harmed by

a kumbhīra (crocodile), but it is safe for one to use the water with a mind of deep respect. Beside the pond for washing robes is a big square rock on which are the traces of the Tathāgata’s robes, with the lines as distinct as if they were carved. Pure believers often come here to make offerings. If heretics and evil people tread contemptuously on the rock the dragon king in the pond raises a storm.

Not far from the pond is a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata, in the course of practicing the deeds of a bodhisattva, was a six-tusked elephant king. A hunter who wished to obtain its tusks disguised himself in a monk’s robe and drew his bow to kill the elephant. Out of respect for the robe the elephant king extracted its tusks and gave them to the hunter.

Not far from the place of the tusk extraction is a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata, in the course of practicing the deeds of a bodhisattva, manifested as a bird. Out of pity for the lack of kindness in the world, he asked a monkey and a white elephant which of them was the first to see the banyan tree [under which they were sitting]. Each gave an account and, according to their statements, who was senior and who was junior was established. Their influence gradually spread far and near and the people began to know the order of superiority and inferiority, and both monks and laypeople followed their example.

Not far away is a great forest in which there is a stupa at the spot where in the past the Tathāgata and Devadatta, both as deer kings, settled a dispute. Formerly in this great forest there were two herds of deer, each of which had more than five hundred animals. The king of this country once came to hunt in the plain and marshland. The Bodhisattva deer king came forward and said to the king, “Your Majesty is hunting with stout dogs in the plain, using burning torches and flying arrows. All my followers will lose their lives this morning and in a few days [their bodies] will become putrid and stinking and will be unfit for food. I wish to supply you with a live deer every day in rotation so that you may have fresh venison, and my followers will be able to lengthen their lives to some extent.” The king, pleased by these words, turned back his carriage. Thus each of the two herds provided the king with a deer on alternate days.

Now in the herd of [the deer king] Devadatta there was a pregnant doe. When it was her turn to be killed she said to the king of her herd, “Although it is my turn to die my child has nothing to do with this.” The deer king Devadatta said angrily, “Who does not value his life?” The doe remarked, sighing, “Our king is not kindly and I may die at any moment.” So she asked for emergency help from the Bodhisattva deer king. The Bodhisattva said, “How compassionate is the mind of a benign mother, showing kindness to her child that has not yet taken shape! I shall go in your place.” Then he went to the gate of the king’s palace and the people in the street exclaimed, “The great deer king has entered the town!” The officials and common people in the capital rushed out to have a look. When the king heard about this he did not believe it, but after the doorkeeper informed the king he understood that it was true and said, “Deer king, why have you come here so abruptly?” The deer said, “A doe was going to die in her turn but she is about to give birth to a fawn, and I cannot bear the sight of her death. I venture to substitute myself for her.” Hearing this, the king said with a sigh, “I am a human being 906b in form but I behave like a deer, and you are a deer yet you have the heart of a human being!” The king then set free all the deer and asked for no more sacrifices from them. The forest was allotted as a preserve for the deer and therefore was called the Forest Given to the Deer; hence the name Deer Park.

Two or three li to the southwest of the monastery is a stupa more than three hundred feet high. The base of the stupa is broad and high and it is adorned with rare and brilliant valuables. There are no niches arranged in rows but instead a dome in the shape of an inverted alms bowl was constructed on the base. Although a stone emblematic pillar was erected it has no decorative wheels or bells. Beside it is a small stupa built at the place where the five people, Ājñāta-Kauṇḍinya and the others, gave up their restraint and greeted the Buddha. When Prince Sarvārthasiddha (known as Yiqie yicheng, “Accomplishment of All Purposes” in Chinese, formerly called Xidaduo in erroneous abbreviation) crossed over the city wall to live in seclusion in the mountains and valleys, forgetting about himself to seek the Dharma, King Śuddho dana gave orders to three clans people and two relatives, saying, “My son Sarvārthasiddha has left home to pursue his studies and is traveling alone in the mountains and marshlands, sojourning in woods and forests. I order you to follow him so I will know where he is staying. Inwardly you are his paternal and maternal uncles, but outwardly he is your lord and you are his subjects. You should know what to do in whatever circumstances.”

Under the king’s order the five men served the prince as his guards, and at the same time they also sought the way of emancipation. They often discussed among themselves whether they should cultivate the way to attain liberation by practicing asceticism or by living in a pleasant manner. Two of them said that one should cultivate the way in comfort, while the other three held that one should cultivate the way in an arduous ascetic manner. They argued about the matter without coming to a clear decision. The prince pondered the ultimate truth and, in order to convince the heretics who led a life of severe hardship, he took only gruel to sustain his life. Seeing this, the two men said, “What the prince is doing is not the true Dharma. The way is something that should be realized in a comfortable manner. He is not of our group, as he has taken to asceticism.” So they deserted the prince and fled far away with the intention of attaining the fruit of sainthood.

After practicing asceticism for six years the prince did not achieve enlightenment and, wishing to prove that asceticism was not the true method, he accepted milk gruel and attained the fruit of sainthood. Hearing this, the three men said with a sigh, “At the last moment to gain success he has retrogressed. All the effort he put forth in practicing asceticism for six years is abandoned in a single day.” Then they went together to visit the two men [who had left before]. When they saw one another, having seated themselves, they started to talk bombastically, saying, “Formerly we saw that Prince Sarvārthasiddha left the palace and went to the wilds; he took off his precious garments and put on a deerskin, working hard and persevering to seek the deep and wonderful Dharma wholeheartedly and painstakingly in order to win the supreme fruit of sainthood. But now he has accepted milk gruel offered by some milkmaids and is morally ruined, contrary to his original intention. We know all about this but we could do nothing.” The two men said, “How is it that you see it so late? He is merely a capricious person. When he was living in the palace with honor and dignity he could not keep his mind in peace but went

far away to the forests, and he abandoned his position as universal monarch to lead the life of a low and vulgar person. Why should we remember him? The mention of him merely distresses us.”

After having bathed in the Nairañjanā River, the Tathāgata sat under the bodhi tree and attained full enlightenment and the title Teacher of Gods and Humans. He sat quietly, meditating on who should be converted by him, thinking, “Udraka Rāmaputra, who has achieved the mental state of no thought and no non-thought (naivasaṃjñāsaṃjñānāyatana), is competent to receive the wonderful Dharma.” The heavenly beings in the air said in reply, “Udraka Rāmaputra passed away seven days ago.” The Tathāgata regretted that he had not been able to meet that man who had died suddenly and so could not hear the wonderful Dharma. He again observed the world in search of a suitable man and recollected Ārāḍakālāma, who had achieved the mental state of nothingness (ākiñcanyāyatana), to whom he should impart the ultimate truth. The heavenly beings again said, “He has been dead five days.” The Tathāgata regretted once more and had pity on that man for not having had the good luck to hear the Dharma. He again pondered the matter of to whom he should impart his teachings and found that no others but the five men at Deer Park should be taught first.

At that time the Tathāgata rose from his seat under the bodhi tree and repaired to Deer Park. His deportment was quiet and calm and he gave off a dazzling divine light. His white eyebrows had the luster of jade and his body was of the color of genuine gold. He proceeded with composure in order to instruct the five men. When they saw the Tathāgata coming from a distance, they said among themselves, “The man who is coming is Sarvārthasiddha. Even after such a long time he has not achieved the fruit of sainthood. He must have given up what he expected in his mind and so he has come to look for us. We should remain silent and not stand up to greet or salute him.” As the Tathāgata approached them his divine influence affected them all, and the five men, forgetting their restraint, saluted him with greetings and waited upon him, according to etiquette. The Tathāgata gradually taught them the ultimate truth and, at the conclusion of the summer retreat during the rainy season, they attained the fruit of sainthood.

Going to the east of Deer Park for two or three li, I came to a stupa, beside which was a dried-up pond more than eighty paces in circumference with the name “Life-saving Pond” or “Hero’s Pond.” I heard the local people say that several hundred years ago there was a hermit living in seclusion in a hut beside the pond. He was learned in arts and crafts and had thoroughly mastered the divine principles, and was able to turn rubble into gems and interchange the forms of humans and animals. But he could not ride on the wind and clouds to accompany the spirits, so he searched into ancient books for the art of becoming a spirit. It was said in the method, “The art of the spirits is the art of longevity. One who wishes to learn it should first of all make up one’s mind. An altar should be built more than ten feet in circumference. Ask a hero of outstanding truthfulness and bravery to hold a long knife and stand at a corner of the altar, holding his breath and keeping silent from dusk to the next morning. One who seeks to be a spirit should sit at the center of the altar while putting his hand on a long knife, repeating an incantation with a concentrated mind, neither seeing nor hearing anything. Before dawn he will become a spirit and the sharp knife will turn into a precious sword. He

will then be able to walk in the air to rule over the spirits. Wielding his sword as a commander he will obtain whatever he desires and never become old or feeble, or suffer illness or death.”

Having acquired the method of becoming a spirit, the hermit began looking for a hero but for a year he could not find a suitable person to his satisfaction. Later, he met a man in the town wailing piteously as he walked along the road. Seeing him, the hermit was pleased with his features and asked him sympathetically why he was so sorrowful. The man said, “I am a poor man and I worked as a servant to sustain myself. My employer was appreciative of my ability and had confidence in me. He promised to pay me good wages if I served him for five years. Thus I toiled diligently and ignored hardships. But when the term of five years was nearly concluded I committed a fault, for which not only was I shamefully flogged but I also lost my pay. This is why I feel so sorrowful, and no one shows me sympathy.”

The hermit asked the man to come with him to the hut and through magical power he produced delicious food [to entertain him]. After that he invited him to take a bath in the pond and clothed him in new garments. Then he presented him with five hundred gold coins and said to him, “When you have spent all the money come again to get more. Please don’t make a stranger of yourself.” He presented rich gifts to the man on several occasions, with the unspoken intention of winning his heart. The hero repeatedly offered to render a service to the hermit as repayment for his kindness. The hermit said, “I sought a hero for a year and I am lucky to have met you, as your features answer the description of the ancient books. I shall not trouble you with anything else but I do request that you keep silent for one night.” The hero said,

“I am not afraid even of death, to say nothing of keeping silent.”

Then an altar was prepared for the performance of the rite of becoming a spirit. They acted in accordance with the method and sat down to wait for dusk. After dusk, each of them did his duty, the hermit repeating the incantation while the hero held the sharp knife. At the approach of dawn [the hero] suddenly shrieked aloud and consequently a fire fell from the air and smoke and flames covered the place like a cloud. The hermit hastily led the man to seek refuge in the pond and asked him, “I told you to keep silent, so why did you make such a shrill noise?” The hero said, “After receiving your instructions I had a nightmare at midnight, in which many strange things appeared. I saw my former employer coming to make a personal apology to me and, out of my deep gratitude to you I refrained from speaking to him. Enraged, that man killed me and I then existed in the state of intermediate existence between death and reincarnation (antarābhava). I looked back at my own corpse with a sigh of regret and, by way of repaying your deep kindness, I decided not to speak a word in my future life. Then I saw I was reborn to a great brahman family in South India and I never uttered a sound in the course of conception and birth and other painful experiences, always bearing in mind the benefit and kindness you extended to me. When I reached the age of schooling, became an adult, got married, lost my parents, and begat a son, I always remembered your kindness and refrained from speaking. All my clans people and relatives wondered about me. When I was over sixty-five years old my wife said to me, ‘You must speak now, otherwise I will kill your son!’ Considering that I was getting old in my second life and had only one child, I 907b stopped my wife from killing him, and thus I uttered that sound.” The hermit said, “It is my fault; it is a mischief caused by a demon.” With a feeling of gratitude and regretful for the failure of the event, the hero died of chagrin. Because the pond prevented the calamity of a conflagration it is called Lifesaving Pond and, as the hero died there, it is also called Hero’s Pond.

To the west of Hero’s Pond is a stupa built in memory of three animals at the spot where the Tathāgata, in the course of practicing the deeds of a bodhisattva, burned himself. At the beginning of the present kalpa there were three animals, a fox, a hare, and an ape, who lived harmoniously together in this wild forest. At that time Indra wished to test the one who was cultivating the bodhisattva deeds and transformed himself into an old man. He said to the three animals, “Are the three of you living in peace and without fear?” The animals said, “We tread on rich grass and frolic in the luxuriant wood. Although we are of different species we enjoy ourselves in both safety and happiness.” The old man said, “I have heard that the three of you are good friends and on intimate terms, so I have come from afar to look for you despite my old age and fatigue. Now I am hungry; what can you give me to eat?” The animals said, “Please wait a moment. We shall go get something for you.”

So each modestly went away on different paths with the same purpose of seeking for some edibles. The fox caught a carp by the riverside, while the ape plucked some strange flowers and fruit in the wood. They came back together to offer their findings to the old man, but the hare returned emptyhanded, frisking about the old man.

The old man said, “As far as I can see you are not living in harmony. The ape and fox had the same purpose and worked with one mind, but the hare came back empty-handed and has nothing to give me. From this I can understand the situation.” Having heard this derisive remark, the hare said to the fox and ape, “Gather a large amount of firewood; I am going to do something.” The fox and ape went speedily to gather hay and haul wood, and when they had piled up a huge heap of fuel it was ignited into raging flames. The hare said, “Kind sir, I am a lower creature and could not get what I wished for. I venture to offer my humble body to be served as a meal to you.” Having said this, the hare jumped into the fire and died in the flames.

At that time the old man resumed his form as Indra and collected the ashes of the hare from among the embers with a long sigh of regret. Then he said to the fox and ape, “Since the event has turned out as it has, I am deeply moved by the hare’s good-heartedness and I shall perpetuate its good deed by sending it to the moon to be known to posterity.” Therefore the local people say that since then a hare has appeared in the moon. People of later times built a stupa at this place.

From here going east along the Ganges for more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Garjanapati (in the domain of Central India). Garja na pati is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city, which borders the Ganges River, is more than ten li in circuit. The inhabitants are rich and happy and the towns and villages are close to one another. The soil is fertile and farming is done in accordance with the seasons. The climate is temperate and the people are simple and honest by social custom and rustic and intrepid by nature. They believe in both the wrong and the right religions. There are over ten monasteries with less than one thousand monks, all of whom follow 907c the Hinayana teachings. Deva temples amount to twenty and followers of the different faiths live together.

In a monastery to the northwest of the great city there is a stupa built by King Aśoka. It is said in the Record of India that one liter of the Tathāgata’s relic bones is preserved in this stupa. In olden times the Tathāgata preached the wonderful Dharma to an assembly of devas and humans for seven days at this place. Beside it are sites where the three past buddhas sat and walked up and down. In the vicinity of these sites is a statue of Maitreya Bodhisattva. Although small in size its divine power is manifest. It has latent spirituality and works miracles from time to time.

Going eastward from the great city for more than two hundred li, I reached Aviddhakarṇa (known as Buchuaner, “Unpierced Ears,” in Chinese) Monastery. The surrounding wall is not extensive but the decorative sculptures are very exquisite. The flowers are reflected in the ponds and the terraces and the ridges of the pavilions are close to one another. The monks are quiet and solemn in deportment and the community lives in an orderly manner. I heard some elderly people say that formerly in the country of Tukhāra, to the north of the Himalayas, there were two or three śramaṇas who took delight in learning and often talked together at leisure times after having done religious service and recitation, saying, “The wonderful principles and abstruse theories cannot be thoroughly mastered through empty words, but the holy sites are obvious and discernible and can be visited by making the journey on foot. We should inquire of some close friends about the matter and go visit the holy sites in person.” So the two or three friends, holding their pewter staffs in hand, started the journey together. When they arrived in India they sought out lodgings in a monastery, but the local monks despised them as frontiersmen and refused to give them accommodation. As they had to stay out in the open air, tired and hungry, they became thin and pallid and looked haggard. At that time the king of that country, on a pleasure trip in the suburbs, saw the visiting monks. He asked them with amazement, “Mendicants, from where and why did you come here? Your ears are not pierced and you are dressed in such dirty and shabby robes.” The śramaṇas said in reply, “We are from the country of Tukhāra. We respectfully follow the teachings of the Buddha and left the world [to live as monks]. By our common wish we have come to pay homage to the holy sites. But it is regrettable to say that, due to our deficiency in blessedness, the Indian monks do not attend to us wayfarers. As we have not completed our pilgrimage we wish to return to our native land, so we will endure hardships and go home after our desire is fulfilled.”

Upon hearing these words the king felt pity for the travelers and constructed a monastery at this superior place. He wrote down a rule on a piece of white cotton that said, “It is due to the spiritual protection of the Triple Gem that I am the most honored person in the world and the noblest in rank among all people. Since I am a king of people and the Buddha has entrusted me [to take care of the religion], I shall extend help to all monks in distress. This monastery has been constructed exclusively for the entertainment of traveling monks, and no monks with pierced ears shall stay in this monastery of mine in the future.” It is on account of this event that the monastery is called “Unpierced Ears.”

Going southeast for more than one hundred li from Aviddhakarṇa Monastery, crossing the Ganges River to the south, I reached the town of Mahāśāla. All the inhabitants are brahmans by caste and they do not follow the buddha-dharma. When they meet Buddhist monks they inquire about their learning, and if they find that the monks are learned they salute them with deep respect.

At the north of the Ganges there is a Nārāyaṇa temple consisting of storied pavilions and terraces arranged in tiers, all beautifully decorated. The statues of various devas are carved from stone with the most exquisite craftsmanship. Their spiritual efficacy is difficult for me to describe in detail.

More than thirty li to the east of the Nārāyaṇa temple is a stupa built by King Aśoka. A large part of it has collapsed into the ground and in front there is a stone pillar more than twenty feet high with the figure of a lion on top. Inscribed on the pillar is a record of the event of subduing demons. Formerly there were some demons of the wilderness at this place who, relying on their strength, ate human flesh and blood, doing harm to living creatures in a most evil and monstrous manner. Out of compassion for the living beings who would die violent deaths, the Tathāgata, through his supernatural powers, induced the demons to take refuge [in the Triple Gem] with veneration and taught them to observe the precept of non-killing. The demons accepted the Buddha’s teachings and circumambulated him with respect. Then they raised a rock for the Buddha to sit on and wished to hear [him teach] the right Dharma, which they protected wholeheartedly. Afterward, people who did not believe in the buddha-dharma tried to push and remove the rock seat set up by the demons but they could not move it, even though they numbered in the thousands. Around the base of the rock there are luxuriant trees and ponds of clear water and anyone who comes near the place is awestruck. Not far from [the stupa of] subduing demons there are several monasteries. Although they are mostly dilapidated there are still monks [living in them], all of whom study and follow the Mahayana teachings.

Going from here to the southeast for over one hundred li, I came to a stupa of which the base has slanted and sunk to one side; the remaining part of it is a few scores of feet in height. When the Tathāgata entered nirvana and the great kings of eight countries divided his relics, the brahman who measured the relics smeared the inside of the measuring bottle with honey, from which he made allotments for the kings. The brahman returned with the bottle and, having obtained the relics that stuck to the inside of the measuring bottle, he built this stupa and enshrined the bottle in it. Hence it is called [Relic Bottle Stupa]. Afterward King Aśoka opened the stupa and took out the relic bottle, for which he constructed a great stupa. On fast days it often emits a brilliant light.

Crossing the Ganges at the northeast of this place and going for one hundred forty or fifty li, I reached the country of Vaiśālī (formerly mis transcribed as Pisheli, in the domain of Central India).

The country of Vaiśālī is more than five thousand li in circuit. The soil is fertile and there is an abundance of flowers and fruit; mango and plantain are plentiful and valuable. The climate is temperate and the people are simple and honest by social custom. They take delight in doing good works and 908b attach importance to learning, and believe in both heterodox and orthodox doctrines. There are several hundred monasteries, most of which are in ruins, with the exception of a few that remain intact and house a few monks. There

are several tens of deva temples and the heretics live together. The sect of the naked adherents flourishes here.

The city wall of the capital of Vaiśālī has badly collapsed and the original base of the wall is sixty or seventy li in circuit, while the palace city is four or five li in circuit; there are few inhabitants. Five or six li to the northwest of the palace city is a monastery with very few monks, who study the teachings of the Hinayana Saṃmitīya school. Beside the monastery is a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata delivered the Vimalakīrtinirdeśa-sūtra, and Ratnā kāra, the son of an elder, and others offered a sunshade to him. To the east is a stupa at the place where Śāriputra and others attained athwartship.

To the southeast of the stupa where Śāriputra attained athwartship is another stupa constructed by the king of Vaiśālī. After the Buddha’s nirvana a former king of this country obtained a portion of the Buddha’s relic bones, for which he respectfully constructed this stupa. It is said in the Record of India that there was originally one hu of the Tathāgata’s relics preserved in this stupa, but King Aśoka opened it and took out nine dou of the relics, leaving only one dou in the stupa. Later, another king wished to open the stupa again to get the remaining relics but just as he had just started to do the work there was an earthquake, so he dared not open the stupa.

To the northwest is another stupa built by King Aśoka, and beside it is a stone pillar fifty or sixty feet tall with the figure of a lion on top. To the south of the stone pillar is a tank that was dug by a group of monkeys for the Buddha, as he once lived at this place in the old days. Not far to the west of the tank is a stupa at the place where the monkeys took the Tathāgata’s alms bowl and climbed into a tree to gather honey. Not far to the south of the tank is a stupa at the place where the monkeys offered the honey to the Buddha. Some figures of monkeys are still preserved at the northwest corner of the tank.

Three or four li to the northeast of the monastery is a stupa built on the foundation of the old residence of Vimalakīrti (known as “Stainless Reputation” in Chinese, formerly translated as “Pure Name.” However, “pure” means “stainless” and “name” is equivalent to “reputation.” Although the meaning is the same the name is translated in different ways. Formerly it was wrongly transcribed as Weimojie). The stupa often reveals spiritual manifestations. Not far from here is a deity’s house, which appears to be built out of piled-up bricks, but according to tradition it was made out of stone.

This was the place where Vimalakīrti pretended to be ill and preached the Dharma. Not far from here is a stupa built at the place of the old house of Ratnākāra, the son of an elder. Not far from here is a stupa built at the place of the old house of the woman Āmra[pālī]. The Buddha’s aunt and other bhikṣuṇīs realized nirvana at this place.

Three or four li to the north of the monastery is a stupa at the place where

human and nonhuman beings stood and waited while following the Tathāgata, 908c who was proceeding to the country of Kuśinagara to enter parinirvāṇa. Next, not far to the northwest, is another stupa at the place where the Buddha stopped and took a last look at the city of Vaiśālī. Not far to the south of this stupa is a temple, in front of which is a stupa at the place where Āmra[pālī] offered her garden to the Buddha.

Beside Āmra[pālī] Garden is a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata announced the time of his nirvana. Formerly the Buddha told Ānanda at this place, “One who has achieved the four constituent parts of supernatural power can live for one kalpa. Now how long should the Tathāgata live?” He repeated the question three times but Ānanda, having been stupefied by Māra, remained silent and, rising from his seat, he went to sit quietly in the wood. At this moment Māra came to the Buddha and said to him, “The Tathāgata has been edifying the people in the world for a long time and those who have been saved by you from the round of rebirth are as numerous as grains of dust and sand. It is now the time for you to enjoy the bliss of nirvana.” The World honored One then took up a pinch of soil with his nail and said to Māra, “Which is more, the amount of soil on the earth, or that on my fingernail?” Māra said in reply, “There is more soil on the earth.” The Buddha said, “Those I have converted may be compared to the amount of soil on my nail, while those not yet converted are as numerous as the amount of soil of the great earth. Nonetheless, I shall enter nirvana in three months.” On hearing this, Māra was pleased and departed.

In the wood Ānanda had a strange dream and he came to tell the Buddha, saying, “In the wood I dreamed that a big tree with luxuriant branches and leaves, casting a dense shade, suddenly fell down in a gale. Does this indicate that the World-honored One intends to enter nirvana? My heart is full of fear so I have come to make this inquiry.” The Buddha said to Ānanda, “I told you previously but you were stupefied by Māra and you did not promptly invite me to stay [in the world]. Māra urged me to enter nirvana soon and I have given him the date. That is what your dream presaged.”

Not far from the place where the Buddha announced the time of his entering nirvana is a stupa at the spot where one thousand sons saw their parents. Formerly a risk lived in seclusion in a rocky valley. One day in mid-spring he was rowing a boat in a clear stream, and a doe followed him to drink water. Through inspiration the doe gave birth to a girl, who was exceedingly beautiful but had feet similar to the hooves of a deer. Seeing the girl, the risk took her in and brought her up. Later, when she was asked to go get some live coals from another ṛṣi’s hermitage, her steps left traces of lotus flowers on the ground. The other risk was deeply surprised by the sight and asked the girl to walk around his hermitage before she would be allowed to get the fire. The deer girl did so, then obtained the fire and returned home. At that time King Brahmānanda was on a hunting expedition and saw the flower traces. Following the traces, he found the girl. Pleased by her unusual appearance, the

king carried her back in his carriage. A physiognomist foretold that she would give birth to one thousand sons. When the other ladies [in the harem] heard the prediction they contrived to take action against her. At the end of her period of gestation she gave birth to a lotus flower with one thousand leaves, with one son sitting on each of the leaves. The other ladies criticized her, and saying that it was an inauspicious object they threw it into the Ganges River to be carried away by the current. King Ujjayana, out on a sightseeing trip in the lower reaches of the river, saw a yellow canopy, embroidered with a pattern of clouds, flowing down the river. He took it up and found one thousand sons wrapped in it. He fed them with milk and raised them into men of great strength. With the help of these one thousand sons the king expanded his kingdom to the four quarters and he was about to encroach on this country with his triumphant army. When King Brahmānanda heard the news he was shocked and fearful, and knowing his troops were not strong enough to offer resistance, he was at his wits’ end.

At that time the deer woman, knowing that the invaders were her sons, said to King [Brahmānanda], “Now the invaders are approaching our territory and have caused disunity among us. I, your unworthy wife, with a mind of loyalty, can defeat these strong enemies.” But the king did not believe her and she was deeply worried and fearful. Then the deer woman went up to the tower of the city gate to wait for the arrival of the invaders. Her one thousand sons, commanding their troops, besieged the city. The deer woman told them, “Do not do unfilial things! I am your mother and you are my sons.” The one thousand sons said, “How absurd are your words!” But the deer woman pressed her breasts and milk flowed out and forked into one thousand streams and, because of the ties of consanguinity, the milk flowed into the mouths of the one thousand sons. Recognizing their mother, they took off their armor and, after disbanding their troops, they returned to their own country. The two countries restored friendly relations and the people lived in peace and happiness.

Not far from the place where the one thousand sons recognized their mother is a stupa at the old site where the Tathāgata walked up and down, while he pointed at the place and told the assembly, “Formerly at this place I recognized my mother. If you wish to know who were the thousand sons, they are the one thousand buddhas of the bhadrakalpa.”

To the east of the place where [the Buddha] related his past life is an old foundation on which there is a stupa that often emits a brilliant light and sometimes answers the entreaties of prayers. This is the remnant site of the storied lecture hall in which the Tathāgata delivered the Samantamukhadhāraṇī and other sutras.

Not far from the lecture hall is a stupa in which are preserved the remains of half of Ānanda’s body. Not far from this stupa there are several hundred stupas, whose exact number is unknown; this is the place where one thousand pratyekabuddhas entered nirvana. There are numerous holy sites in and around the city of Vaiśālī and it is difficult to describe them all in detail. The old ruins at commanding positions stand with each other like the scales of a fish, but through the passage of time and the change of hot and cold seasons the woods have withered away and the ponds have dried up, leaving behind decayed trees to bear testimony [to past glories].

Going to the northwest for fifty or sixty li from the great city, I reached

a great stupa at the place where the Licchavis (formerly mis transcribed as 909b Lichezi) bade farewell to the Tathāgata. When the Tathāgata was proceeding to the country of Kuśinagara from the city of Vaiśālī, the Licchavis, having heard that the Buddha was about to enter nirvana, went to see him off, wailing piteously. Seeing that their sorrow was so deep as to be inconsolable by

words, the World-honored One produced through his supernatural powers a big river with steep banks and a rapid current. The Licchavis, crying bitterly, were thus prevented from following him any further. The Tathāgata left his alms bowl as a memento for them.

Less than two hundred li to the northwest of the city of Vaiśālī is an old city that has been desolate for many years and has few inhabitants. In the city there is a stupa at the place where the Buddha told an assembly of various bodhisattvas and human and heavenly beings about cultivating bodhisattva deeds in his past lives. He was once a universal monarch named Mahādeva (known as Datian, “Great Deity,” in Chinese), in this city, possessing the seven treasures and competently ruling over the four continents of the world. But after witnessing the phenomenon of changeability and realizing the principle of impermanence, he cherished a high ambition and renounced the throne. He abandoned his country to become a monk and donned the dyed robe to pursue learning.

Going southeast for fourteen or fifteen li from the city, I reached a great stupa at the place where seven hundred sages and saints convened the Second Council. One hundred and ten years after the Buddha’s nirvana, some bhikṣus in the city of Vaiśālī deviated from the buddha-dharma and observed the disciplinary rules in an erroneous way. At that time Elder Yaśoda was residing in Kosala, Elder Sambhoga in Mathurā, Elder Revata in Hanruo, Elder Sālha in Vaiśālī, and Elder Kubjaśobhita in Pāṭaliputra. All these great arhats had gained mental liberation, mastered the Tripiṭaka, and possessed the three clear insights; they had great reputations and were well known to all as disciples of Venerable Ānanda. At that time Yaśoda sent a messenger to invite various sages and saints to meet in the city of Vaiśālī. The number of those who attended the meeting amounted to seven hundred less one. Kubjaśobhita then saw with his clairvoyance that various sages and saints were assembled to discuss matters concerning the Dharma and he came to the assembly through his supernatural power of ubiquity. Sambhoga, his right shoulder uncovered, knelt on the ground and said to the council, “Be quiet! Consider with respect! Although the great holy King of the Dharma entered nirvana as an expedient many years ago, his oral teachings still exist. Some negligent bhikṣus in the city of Vaiśālī observe the disciplinary rules erroneously and have raised ten points that are contrary to the teachings of the Buddha who possessed the ten powers. Now you sages are conversant with the [proper] observance and violation of the disciplinary rules, and all of you have studied under the instruction of Bhadanta Ānanda. For the sake of repaying the Buddha’s kindness you should reiterate his holy decrees.” No one among the great saints was not moved to tears. They summoned the faulty bhikṣus 909c and, in accordance with the Vinaya regulations, they reproached them and stopped their misdeeds. Thus the wrong practices ended and the holy teachings were clarified.

Going south for eighty or ninety li from the place where the seven hundred sages and saints held a meeting, I came to Śvetapura Monastery, which consisted of many lofty buildings and magnificent pavilions. The monks are pure and solemn in manner and they all study Mahayana teachings. Beside it are old sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. The stupa beside it was built by King Aśoka at the place where the Tathāgata halted to rest on his way to the country of Magadha in the south and looked back at the city of Vaiśālī in the north.

More than thirty li away to the south of Śvetapura Monastery there are two stupas, one built on the southern bank and the other on the northern bank of the Ganges River. This was the place where Venerable Ānanda divided his bodily relics between two countries. Ānanda was a cousin of the Tathāgata and was a man of wide learning and comprehensive intelligence who had an extensive range of knowledge and a retentive memory. After the Buddha’s demise he succeeded Mahākāśyapa in upholding the right Dharma and guiding the learners. Once, when he was taking a walk in a wood in the country of Magadha, he saw a novice reciting the scriptures incorrectly, with passages and sentences in disorder and the wording in confusion. Having heard the recitation, Ānanda recalled the Buddha with a deep feeling of sorrow and went slowly to the novice to point out his mistakes. The novice said with a smile, “Great Virtuous One, you have become senile and what you say is wrong. My teacher is a wise man in the prime of life. I have personally learned from him and there is no mistake in his instructions.”

Ānanda withdrew quietly with a sigh, saying, “Even though I am getting old I still wish to live longer to uphold the right Dharma for the benefit of living beings. But living beings are laden with defilement and are difficult to admonish. It is useless for me to live any longer. I will quickly enter nirvana.” Then he left the country of Magadha for the city of Vaiśālī. While Ānanda was crossing the Ganges in a boat, sailing midstream, the king of Magadha heard that Ānanda was going away and, out of deep affection and in admiration of his virtue, he urgently dispatched his military carriages to go quickly in pursuit of him. Hundreds and thousands of troops camped on the southern bank. [At the same time] the king of Vaiśālī, feeling both grief and joy at the news that Ānanda was coming [to his country to enter nirvana], also sent his troops to march speedily to welcome him. Hundreds and thousands of soldiers were stationed on the northern bank. The two armies faced each other and [their flags were so numerous that they] obscured the sun. Fearing that they might start a war and kill each other, Ānanda ascended into the air from the boat and entered nirvana amid the manifestation of supernatural powers. A fire burned his body, which fell down in two parts, one dropping on the southern bank and the other on the northern bank. So each of the two kings obtained a portion of the relics, as their armies wept sorrowfully. After returning to their respective countries they erected stupas to pay homage to the relics.

Going from here to the northeast for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Vṛji (called by the northerners the country of Saṃvṛji, in the

domain of North India). The country of Vṛji is more than four thousand li in circuit, long from east to west and narrow from south to north. The soil is fertile and abounds in flowers and fruit. The climate is somewhat cold and the people are impetuous by nature. Most of them venerate the heretics and a few believe in the buddha-dharma. There are over ten monasteries with less than a thousand monks, who study both the Mahayana and Hinayana teachings. There are several tens of deva temples with a great number of heretics. The capital city of the country is called Cañśuma, of which the greater part is in ruins. Inside the old palace city there are still more than three thousand families of inhabitants living together like in a village or town.

To the northeast of a big river there is a monastery with a few monks who are pure and lofty in learning. West of here there is a stupa more than thirty feet high on the bank of the river, which flows like a belt to the south. This was the place where with his great compassion the Buddha once converted some fishermen. In the distant past, at the time of the Buddha, there were five hundred fishermen who worked in groups to catch fish. One day they caught in this river a large fish with eighteen heads, each having two eyes. As the fishermen were getting ready to kill the fish the Tathāgata, in the country of Vaiśālī, saw it with his divine eye and felt pity for it. He intended to take this opportunity to edify the fish and to enlighten the fishermen at the same time. He told the assembly of monks, “In the country of Vṛji there is a big fish that I intend to convert so as to enlighten the fishermen. You should know that it is now time to do so.”

Then the Buddha, surrounded by the assembly of monks, ascended into the air through his power of divine feet and flew to the riverside. He laid down his sitting cloth as usual and said to the fishermen, “Do not kill the fish!” Through his supernatural power and in an expedient way, he endowed the big fish with the faculties of knowing its previous life, speaking human language, and understanding human sentiment. Then the Tathāgata purposely asked the fish, though he already knew the answer, “What sins did you commit in your previous life so that you are now in an evil state of rebirth with such an unfortunate form?” The fish said, “By the effect of good deeds I had done in a former life I was born to a noble family and I was known as the great brahman Kapittha in my previous life. Due to the influence of my caste, I despised and bullied other people and, considering myself learned, I scorned the scriptures and the Dharma. I disrespectfully slandered the buddhas and reproached the monks with abusive language, comparing them to camels, donkeys, elephants, horses, and other ugly animals. Because of these evil deeds I am now suffering in this unfortunate form. But because I did some good deeds in one of my former lives I have been born at a time when a buddha is in the world, and I have now seen the holy Buddha himself with my own eyes and have heard his holy teachings.” Then [the fish] made a confession and repented his evil deeds done in the past.

The Tathāgata taught the fish in accordance with its capacity and enlightened it as was suitable to the occasion. After hearing the Dharma, the fish died and was reborn in heaven through the power of its good deeds. Then he looked at his own celestial body and wondered why he had been born in 910b heaven. After recalling his past life, he remembered the Buddha with gratitude and came with other heavenly beings to see him. Having worshiped the Buddha, he circumambulated him and stood aside to offer him valuables and fragrant flowers brought from heaven. The World-honored One related this anecdote to the fishermen, while pointing at the heavenly beings, and preached the wonderful Dharma to them. They were moved and awakened [from ignorance] and sincerely worshiped the Buddha with repentance, tore up their fishing nets, and burned their boats. They turned their minds to truth and embraced the Dharma. After donning the dyed robes of monks and having heard the ultimate teachings, all of them got rid of defilement and attained the fruit of sainthood.

More than one hundred li to the northeast of the place where the fishermen were converted there is a stupa over one hundred feet high built by King Aśoka to the west of an old city. This was the place where the Buddha once preached the Dharma for six months to convert celestial and human beings. At a distance of one hundred forty or fifty paces to the north of this stupa there is a smaller stupa marking the place where the Tathāgata laid down the disciplinary rules for the bhikṣus. Not far to the west there is another stupa, in which are enshrined the Tathāgata’s hair and nail relics. People coming far and near converge at this place to burn incense, scatter flowers, and light lamps and candles without interruption.

Going from here to the northwest for one thousand four hundred or five hundred li, crossing over mountains and passing through valleys, I reached the country of Nepāla (in the domain of Central India). The country of Nepāla is over four thousand li in circuit and it is situated among the Snow Mountains. The capital city of the country is more than twenty li in circuit and there are hills and valleys in close connection. The soil is suitable for growing cereals and yields many flowers and fruit. The country produces red copper, yaks, and jīvaṃjīvas (two-headed birds). Red copper coins are used as the medium of exchange. The climate is piercingly cold. The people are sinister and iniquitous by social custom and are rude and unrestrained by nature and disparage good faith and righteousness. They have no learning but are skillful in craftsmanship. They are ugly in appearance and believe in both wrong and right doctrines. The monasteries and deva temples are so close together that they touch each other and there are more than two thousand monks, who study both Mahayana and Hinayana teachings; the number of heretics is unknown. The king, being a Licchavi of the kṣatriya caste, is an upright man with good learning and is a pure Buddhist. In recent years there was a king named Aṃśuvarman (known as Guangzhou, “Brilliant Helmet,” in Chinese), a learned scholar of intelligence and sagacity, who wrote a treatise on śabdavidyā (Sanskrit grammar). He esteemed learning and honored the virtuous, and his fame spread far and near.

To the southeast of the capital city there is a small pool. When fire is thrown into it the water burns, and when other things are cast into it they also become fiery.

From here I returned to the country of Vaiśālī and, crossing the Ganges River to the south, I reached the country of Magadha (formerly mis transcribed as Mojiatuo or Mojieti, in the domain of Central India).

End of Fascicle VII of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

 

Fascicle VIII

The Country of Magadha(Part 1)

The country of Magadha is more than five thousand li in circuit and the capital 910c city is sparsely populated, while in the towns there are many registered families. The soil is fertile and good for farming. There is a special kind of rice of large grain with an unusual fragrance, whose luster and color are extraordinary. The people call it the rice for great personages. The land is low and humid and the towns are located on tablelands. After the beginning of summer and before mid-autumn the plains are flooded and boats can be used. The people are simple and honest by social custom and the climate is moderately hot. The inhabitants esteem learning and revere the buddha-dharma. There are over fifty monasteries with more than ten thousand monks, most of whom study Mahayana teachings. There are several tens of deva temples with numerous heretics.

To the south of the Ganges River there is an old city over seventy li in circuit. Although it has been deserted for a long time the old foundations are still there. In the past, when the human life span was innumerable years, this city was called Kusumapura (known as Xianghuagongcheng, “Palace City of Fragrant Flowers,” in Chinese). The royal city was full of flowers, hence the name of the city. Later on, when the human life span was several thousand years, the name was changed to the city of Pāṭaliputra (formerly mis transcribed as the city of Balianfu).

There was once a learned brahman of high talent who had several thousand disciples studying under him. Some of the disciples went out together on a pleasure trip. One of them paced up and down in a melancholy mood and his companions asked him why he was so sad. He said, “I am in the prime of life yet I am still a vagabond, with only my shadow to accompany me, and, moreover, even though a long time has passed I have not made any achievement in learning. On account of this, my mind is heavily laden with

sorrow.” His schoolmates said to him in jest, “In that case we shall now arrange a ceremony for you to get married.” They then chose two people to act as the parents of the bridegroom and two people as the parents of the bride. The young man was then made to sit under a pāṭalī tree, which was thus called the Tree of the Son-in-Law. Seasonal fruit was gathered and pure water was served as wine to make a wedding feast to celebrate the nuptials. The mock father of the imaginary bride broke off a branch of the tree and handed it to the young scholar, saying, “This is your good spouse. I hope you will not refuse the offer.” The scholar was happy and satisfied. When it was time for the party to return home at dusk the young man did not wish to leave the place and wanted to stay behind. The other disciples said to him, “We were merely making a mock ceremony. Please return home with us now, lest the fierce animals in the woods hurt you.”

The scholar lingered at the place and walked about the tree. After sunset a strange light shone brightly in the wilderness and elegant music from wind and stringed instruments was heard. A row of tents was pitched and in a moment an old man, holding a staff, came to extend greetings to him. There was also an old woman approaching with a maiden, followed by a large number of splendidly dressed attendants amid the sound of music. The old man said to him, while pointing at the maiden, “This is your wife.” The wedding festivities lasted seven days.

The other disciples, concerned that the scholar might be killed by wild animals, came to look for him. Then they saw him sitting alone under the shade of the tree, as if he were accompanying some guests of honor. They asked him to return with them but he refused. Some time later he entered the city by himself to see his relatives and friends and told them what had happened to him. Those who heard the story were amazed. His friends went with him to the woods, where they saw a great mansion at the place of the flowering tree, with servants and slaves busily walking about. The old man received them politely and prepared a feast, along with a performance of music to entertain them, according to the etiquette between hosts and guests. When they returned to the city they told everything to people far and near.

After a year a son was born to the couple and the young scholar said to his wife, “I wish to go home but I cannot bear leaving you behind. If I remain here I will always make my lodging in the open wilderness.” Having heard this, his wife told it to her father, the old man, who said to the young scholar, “For the enjoyment of life one need not go back to one’s native place. I shall build you a palace. Do not think otherwise.” Through the labor of spirits the palace was promptly completed. The old City of Fragrant Flowers was shifted to this place and, as the city had been constructed by spirits for the [infant] son, it was called the City of the Son of Pāṭali (Pāṭaliputra).

To the north of the old royal city there is a stone pillar several tens of feet in height, erected at the place where King Aśoka made a hell. In the onehundredth year after the nirvana of Śākya Tathāgata, King Aśoka (known as Wuyou, “Not Feeling Sorrow,” in Chinese, formerly mis transcribed as Ayu), the great-grandson of King Bimbisāra (known as Yingjian, “Hard Shadow,” in Chinese, formerly mis transcribed as Pinpisuo), moved his capital from the city of Rājagṛha to Pāṭaliputra. After the long passage of time only some old foundations still survive. Of the monasteries, deva temples, and stupas, there are several hundred remnant sites lying in ruins; only two or three remain intact. Only in a small city situated to the north of the old palace and on the banks of the Ganges are there over a thousand households.

When King Aśoka first succeeded to the throne he was cruel and practiced tyranny. He established a hell to torture people, surrounded by lofty walls with watchtowers at the corners. Great furnaces of fierce fire and cutters with sharp points and keen edges, as well as other instruments of torture, were prepared in imitation of the hells and a savage and cruel man was appointed to be the jailer. At first it was used for punishing all sorts of criminals of the country, regardless of the nature of their misdeeds. Later on all casual passersby were captured and put to death and all who had entered the hell were killed to prevent the secret from leaking out.     

A newly admitted śramaṇa once came to the gate of the hell in the course of making his almsround. The cruel jailer caught him and intended to kill him. Terror-stricken, the śramaṇa asked permission to perform a confessional ceremony [before death]. He immediately saw a man who had been bound and sent into the hell, where he was dismembered and cut into pieces. Presently the broken body became rotten and decayed. The śramaṇa was deeply touched by the sight and he gained the insight of impermanence and realized athwartship. The jailer said to him, “It is now time for you to die.” Having achieved the fruit of sainthood the śramaṇa had no discrimination between life and death.

Even though he was thrown into a cauldron of boiling water it was just as if [he was] in a pond of cool water and a huge lotus flower sprang up for his seat. The jailer was surprised by the unusual spectacle and hurried to inform the king, who came to see the sight for himself and highly praised the spiritual protection. Then the jailer said, “Your Majesty must die.” “Why?” said the king. The jailer replied, “Your Majesty previously issued an order as a rule of the hell that whoever has entered the enclosure of the hell must be killed, and it did not say that the king should be excepted from the regulation.” The king said, “Once a law is adopted it should not be altered. But did I make an exception for you when I laid down the rule? It is my fault that you have lived until now.” He then ordered the lictors to cast the jailer into the big furnace and after the jailer’s death the king came out of the hell. He demolished the walls, filled up the trenches, abolished the hell, and thereafter showed leniency toward criminals.

Not far to the south of the hell there is a stupa whose foundation has collapsed on one side so that it has the shape of an overturned alms bowl. It is decorated with gems and has stone balustrades. As it is one of the eighty-four thousand stupas built by King Aśoka it was constructed by human labor in his palace. Inside it one duo of the Tathāgata’s relic bones is preserved, and they occasionally show spiritual manifestations and issue a divine light from time to time.

Having abolished the hell, King Aśoka met the great arhat Upagupta, who instructed him according to his capacity in an appropriate way. The king said to the arhat, “I am lucky to be a lord of humans as a result of good deeds I have done in the past, but because of my spiritual hindrances I regretfully have not received edification from the Buddha. Now I wish to construct stupas for the veneration of the Tathāgata’s relic bones.” The arhat said, “With your power of bliss and virtue you can command various deities to work for you. It is my wish that you should protect the Triple Gem with great determination. Now is the time for you to do so.” Then the arhat told the king in detail about the latter’s cause of offering a handful of earth [to the Buddha in a previous life] and about the merits of building stupas as predicted by the Tathāgata.

King Aśoka was pleased to hear the prediction. He summoned the spirits and deities and issued an order, saying, “The King of the Dharma has instructed living beings for their happiness and, due to my good deeds done in the past, I am now the most honored person among humankind. In order to venerate the Tathāgata’s relic bones stupas must be constructed. You spirits and deities should work with one heart to construct stupas for the Buddha’s relics at all places in Jambudvīpa, which is inhabited by a full koṭi of families. Though the project has been initiated by me, it depends upon you for its successful completion, and I have no intention of monopolizing the advantages of performing such superior good deeds. Each of you should go start the construction work and wait for further instructions.” Having received the edict, 911c the spirits and deities went away to start the construction work at their different places, and when the work was completed they all came to ask for further instructions.

After having opened the stupas built in eight countries and distributed the relic bones [taken out from them] to the spirits and deities, King Aśoka said to the arhat, “My wish is to enshrine the relic bones in the various stupas at the same time. I hope to do this but I do not know how to fulfill my wish.” The arhat said, “Your Majesty can order the deities and spirits to enshrine the relics at the same instant on the appointed date when they see that the sun is eclipsed by an object in the shape of a hand.” The king imparted the instruction to the spirits and deities. On the appointed date King Aśoka observed the sun, and at midday the arhat, through supernatural power, stretched out his arm and covered up the sun with his hand. The eclipse was seen by all everywhere the stupas were being constructed and at that moment they commenced work simultaneously.

Not far from the stupa is a temple containing a stone on which the Tathāgata once stood and the traces of his footprints are still in existence. The two footprints have the wheel signs and the ten toes have floral ornaments. The fish patterns are visible and sometimes issue a bright light. In olden times, when the Tathāgata was about to enter nirvana he proceeded northward to the city of Kuśinagara and looked back at the country of Magadha in the south. He was standing on this stone when he told Ānanda, “I leave my last footprints here, looking back at Magadha while I am going to enter nirvana. One hundred years afterward there will be a King Aśoka who will rule over the world and establish his capital at this place. He will protect the Triple Gem and command all kinds of deities to do him service.” When King Aśoka succeeded to the throne he shifted his capital to this place and built a city here, and protected the footprint stone with a shelter. As it was near the palace city the king always came in person to make offerings to it.

Afterward various kings vied with one another in trying to bring the stone home. Although it was not very big they could not move it. Recently King Śaśāṅka persecuted the buddha-dharma and went to the place of the stone, intending to destroy the holy object. He effaced the footprints with a chisel but they reappeared with the same traces and patterns. Then he threw the stone into the Ganges River but it immediately returned to its original place. The stupa beside the stone marks the place where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down in olden times.

Not far from the temple of the Buddha’s footprints there is a huge stone pillar more than thirty feet tall. The inscription on it has been partially erased but it says roughly that King Aśoka was a staunch believer who offered Jambudvīpa to the Triple Gem thrice and redeemed it thrice with valuable pearls and gems. Such are the fragmentary words that are still legible.

To the north of the palace city is a great rock chamber with the appearance of a lofty hill and a space several tens of feet wide inside. It was constructed through the labor of deities and spirits by the order of King Aśoka for his

younger brother, who was a monk. King Aśoka had a younger brother by the name of Mahendra (known as Dadi, “Great Ruler,” in Chinese). As he was born in a royal family he presumptuously put on the king’s robe and led a luxurious and dissolute life, treating people cruelly until they bore a grudge against him. The prime minister and other senior officials exhorted the king, saying, “Your younger brother has gone too far in riding roughshod over the people. As the saying goes, when the government is impartial the country will be in good order, and when the people live in harmony the ruler will be at peace. This precept has been handed down from ancient times. We hope that the code of the country will be maintained and that he will be put on trial according to the law.”

King Aśoka, in tears, said to his younger brother, “Since I succeeded to the throne I have put all living beings under my protection. As you are my brother from the same mother, how can I neglect to benefit you? But I did not guard and guide you in time so that you have now incurred the punishment for criminals. I am in fear of my ancestors above and forced by public criticism from below.”

Mahendra bowed to the king apologetically and said, “I am so imprudent as to have infringed the law. I hope you will grant me seven days’ respite.” He was then confined in a dark chamber under strict custody but was provided with the best delicacies without negligence. [At the end of the first day] the guardian announced, “One day has passed and there are six more days.” When the sixth day had passed, Mahendra, deeply worried and fearful, made vigorous efforts both physically and mentally [in spiritual cultivation], and thereupon he gained the fruit of sainthood, ascended into the air, and manifested miracles. Before long he left the world and went far away to live in a rocky valley. King Aśoka went personally to see him and said, “I was bound by the law of the country so I had to inflict a severe penalty upon you. I did not think that you would elevate yourself and realize the fruit of sainthood. You are now free from trouble and you may return to our country.” His younger brother said, “Formerly I was caught in the net of passions and my mind was fixated on [pleasurable pursuits]. I am now free from the city of perils and I take delight in staying in the mountains and valleys. I wish to relinquish the human world and always remain in the hills and vales.” The king said, “If you wish to engage yourself in quiet meditation it is not necessary for you to live in remote mountains. In compliance with your wish, however, I will build a cave for you.”

The king then summoned the spirits and deities and said to them, “I will prepare a grand banquet of delicacies on the day after tomorrow. You may all come to attend the feast but each of you should bring a large rock to serve as a seat.” By the king’s order the deities came at the appointed time and, when the feast was over, the king told the deities, “The stone seats are in disarray so you should stack them up in proper order. I mean to make use of your labor to build a hollow chamber.” Under the king’s instruction the deities completed the work in a few days’ time. King Aśoka then went to invite [his younger brother] to stay in the hill cave.

To the north of the old palace and south of the hell there is a large trough that was made by divine labor under the command of King Aśoka. It is used for storing comestibles at the time of offering food to the monks.

To the southwest of the old palace there is a rocky hill, around which there are several tens of caves that were excavated in the steep cliffs by divine labor under the command of King Aśoka, for Upagupta and other arhats.

There used to be a lofty terrace beside the hill but it has collapsed, leaving only a pile of stones as the remnant foundation. In a pond there is rippling water as clear and reflective as a mirror. It is regarded as holy water by the people of neighboring and distant countries. If one drinks or bathes in the 912b water the soil will be washed away and one’s sins will be expiated.

To the southwest of the hill there are five stupas whose lofty foundations have collapsed, but the remnant portions are still high. When viewed from a distance they seem to be verdant hillocks. Each side of the stupas has a space several hundred paces wide. People of later times constructed small stupas upon the big ones. It is said in the Record of India that in the old days, after King Aśoka had built eighty-four thousand stupas, he still had five dou of [the Buddha’s] relics. Therefore he constructed five more stupas in a different style from that of other places. Miracles occurred from time to time to testify to the fivefold spiritual body of the Tathāgata. Some impious people discussed the matter in private, saying that these stupas were constructed by King Nanda of yore to store his seven kinds of treasures. Later a king of little faith heard about the rumor and, covetous of the treasures, he sent his troops under his personal supervision to excavate the stupas. But the earth quaked, the mountains collapsed, clouds enshrouded the sun, and the stupas issued a loud sound of thunder. The soldiers fell dead and the elephants and horses fled in fear. Since then no one has dared another attempt [to excavate] the stupas. Some people have said that there were different accounts of this matter, but this could not be unascertained. We may get the true facts by following the records of ancient books.

To the southeast of the old city is Kukkuṭārāma Monastery (known as Jiyuan, “Rooster Garden,” in Chinese), which was built by way of performing good deeds with veneration by King Aśoka when he first had faith in the buddha-dharma. He summoned one thousand monks, both ordinary people and saints, [to this monastery], offered them the four monastic requisites, and provided them with other articles for daily use. The monastery has been in ruins for a long time and only the foundations are still in existence. Beside this monastery is a great stupa called Āmalaka, which is the name of a sort of medicinal fruit (āmalaka; myrobalan) of India.

King Aśoka, lying ill on his deathbed, knew that he was incurable and he intended to give up his gems and jewels for the performance of good deeds, but his influential ministers had seized power and would not allow him to do what he desired. Later he kept an āmalaka fruit from his meal and played with it until it had become half spoiled. Holding the fruit in his hand, he said to his ministers with a long sigh, “Who is now the lord of Jambudvīpa?” The ministers said in reply, “Your Majesty is the sole lord of Jambudvīpa.’’ The king said, “No! I am not the lord now! I have sovereign power only over this half a fruit. What a pity! Worldly wealth and nobility are more easily extinguished than a candle burning in the wind. My position entitled me to control the whole country and my title is the highest of all designations, yet I am poor on my deathbed, under the command of powerful ministers. Even though I have lost the empire I still possess half a fruit.” Then he ordered his attending official, “Take this half a fruit to Kukkuṭārāma Monastery and offer it to the monks with the following message: ‘I, the former lord of the whole of Jambudvīpa, now the king of half an āmalaka fruit, beg to pay homage in front of the monks of great virtue. I hope that you will accept my last alms. I have lost all that I once possessed, except for this half a fruit, which is somehow 912c at my disposal. Please have pity on my poverty and let my seeds of blessedness grow and increase.’” The senior monk of the community said, “King Aśoka used to be generous in almsgiving but he now suffers from a serious illness and treacherous ministers have usurped his power. His accumulated wealth is no longer his own property and he has only half a fruit to give as alms. By the king’s order we will distribute the fruit to all the monks.” So the senior monk instructed the steward monk to cook the fruit in a thick soup and then collected the kernel, for which a stupa was built. Since the monks had received the king’s great beneficence it was fitting that they fulfill his last wish.

In an old monastery to the northwest of Āmalaka Stupa there is a stupa known as Bell Striking. Formerly there were about a hundred monasteries in this city. The monks were solemn and respectful and had great learning, and they had silenced the heretical scholars [in debate]. In the course of time the monks eventually died and their successors failed to maintain the tradition of learning. The heretical teachers taught their students to become perfect in knowledge and they then summoned their schoolmates, thousands and myriads in number, to assemble at the monastic buildings, shouting aloud, “Strike the bell to call up all your scholars!” Groups of ignorant monks came together and wantonly sounded the bell and they reported to the king, requesting him to be the judge of the contest. The heretical teachers were highly talented scholars of good learning, and even though there were numerous monks their arguments were shallow and superficial. The heretics announced, “We are the winners of the debate. From now on no monastery should strike the bell to call assemblies.” The king sanctioned the request, according to the precedent regulations of debate. Having been put to shame, the monks withdrew in disgrace and for twelve years they did not strike the bell.

At that time, Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva (known as Longmeng, “Dragon Valor,” in Chinese, formerly mistranslated as Longshu, “Dragon Tree”) of South India had enjoyed a good reputation from his youth, and he enjoyed unique fame when he had grown up he. He renounced the world of lust and love and became a monk to cultivate his learning. He made a profound study of the wonderful principles and attained the first stage [of a bodhisattva]. He had a great disciple named Deva, a person of wisdom and cleverness with wits and good understanding. Deva said to his teacher [ Nāgārjuna], “The scholars of Pāṭaliputra were defeated in debate by the heretics, and time passes so quickly that twelve years have passed since they stopped striking the bell. I would venture to demolish the hill of erroneous views and light the torch of the Dharma.” Nāgārjuna said, “The heretics of Pāṭaliputra are erudite scholars and you are no match for them. I must go in person.” Deva said, “To cut off rotten grass is it necessary to overturn the whole mountain? Under your instruction I venture to refute the heterodox scholars. May you, my great teacher, raise an argument in favor of the heretical theories and let me analyze the points against them, and we shall see who will be the winner before we plan our action.” Nāgārjuna then proposed a thesis of the heretical theories, and Deva refuted his teacher as the latter tried to maintain his viewpoints. At the end of seven days Nāgārjuna had failed to uphold his proposition. He said with a sigh, “Erroneous views can be easily refuted and it is difficult to defend wrong theories. You may now go; you can surely defeat them.”

Deva Bodhisattva had always been a man of high renown. When the

heretics of Pāṭaliputra heard about his arrival they assembled and hurriedly went to report to the king, saying, “Your Majesty has formerly condescended to hear our suggestion that a rule be made to prevent the monks from striking the bell. We pray that a decree be issued to order the guardians of the city

gates not to allow a foreign monk from a neighboring country to enter the city, lest he conspire to recklessly overturn the former rule.” The king consented to their proposal and ordered the guardians to keep strict watch. Thus when Deva arrived he was barred from entering the city. Hearing about he restriction, he changed his clothes, folded his saṃghāṭi robe, and wrapped it in a bundle of straw. Holding the front piece of his long gown in hand, he hastily went into the city, carrying the straw bundle on his head. After entering the city and having cast away the straw, he put on his religious robe and came to this monastery to ask for lodging, but as he had no acquaintance there no one would provide him with a room. So he spent the night on the terrace of the bell and early next morning he struck the bell loudly. When the monks heard the sound of the bell they came out to see and found that the traveling monk [had struck the bell], as the other monasteries did the same in response to the call of this monastery. The king, having heard the sound, inquired into the matter but could not find out who was the first to strike the bell. When the king’s man came to the monastery the monks pointed out Deva, who said, “A bell is sounded for assembling the monks. If you do not strike it what is the use of hanging it there?” The king’s man said, “Formerly the monks were defeated in a debate, so twelve years ago a rule was laid down to prohibit them from striking the bell.” Deva said, “Is that so? I wish to beat the drum of the Dharma again today.”

The messenger reported to the king, saying, “A foreign śramaṇa wishes to avenge a former shame.” The king then summoned the scholars and made a rule that one who loses an argument should pay with his life for the failure. Then the heretics displayed their flags, set out their drums, and boisterously talked on different theories, showing off their talent for eloquence. Having sat on the seat of discussion, Deva listened to their disputations and, aiming at their different views, he refuted them through analysis. In less than twelve days he vanquished all the heretics, to the delight of the king and his ministers, who built this spiritual stupa in memory of Deva’s supreme virtue.

To the north of Bell Striking Stupa is the old site of the dwelling place of the demon-eloquent brahman. Formerly there was a brahman of the city [of Pāṭaliputra] who lived in a thatched hut in a desolate place, dissociating himself from the world. He worshiped demons to beseech them for blessedness and he conversed with evil spirits. He had brilliant ideas, talked volubly, and answered questions with elegant words. Whenever people held a heated debate with him he always retorted from behind a curtain. None of the learned scholars with high talent could excel him and the common people unanimously respected him as a saint.

There was a bodhisattva named Aśvaghoṣa (known as Maming, “Horseneighing,” in Chinese), whose wisdom comprehended everything and whose way extended to the three vehicles. He often remarked on the matter, saying, “This brahman has no teacher to teach him and his arts are groundless and without ancient basis. He lives in seclusion, enjoying great renown all by himself. How could he be what he is unless he depends on deities and ghosts and is obsessed with evil spirits? One whose ability of eloquence is endowed

by a demon cannot speak face to face with another person and he cannot reiterate what he has said once. I must go there and see how he will behave.” So he went to the [brahman’s] hut and said to him, “I have heard of your great fame with admiration for quite a long time. I hope you will lift the curtain so that I may express what is on my mind.” The brahman remained arrogant, talking from behind his curtain, and would not speak face to face [with his visitor]. Aśvaghoṣa realized that it was the demon who was so self-conceited. After the conversation ended he left and told the people, “I have come to know what is what and I am sure to defeat him.” Then he went to see the king and asked for permission to hold a sharp debate with the hermit. The king was surprised to hear this and said, “What sort of man are you? Unless you have gained the three clear insights or obtained the six supernatural powers, how could you contest with him?” Nevertheless, he ordered that his carriage be prepared and went in person to see the details of the controversy.

At that time Aśvaghoṣa Bodhisattva discussed the subtle words of the Tripi- ṭaka and elucidated the general meanings of the five branches of knowledge. He talked eloquently and with great ease and his brilliant views were lucid and far-sighted. After the brahman had stated his opinion, Aśvaghoṣa said, “In your statement you lost the gist of my argument. Please repeat what you have said.” The brahman remained silent and became tongue-tied, however. Aśvaghoṣa rebuked him, saying, “Why do you not resolve my interrogation? The demon you serve should hasten to give you words.” While saying this he hurriedly lifted the curtain, trying to get a look at the demon, but the brahman said in a flustered and fearful manner, “Stop! Stop!” Aśvaghoṣa withdrew and remarked, “That fellow has lost his fame this morning. As the saying goes, false fame cannot last long.” The king said, “If not for your great virtue, who could have seen through his sinister fraudulence? According to the regular tradition of the country someone who has an unprecedented and unique capability of discernment should be commended for his perspicacity.”

More than two hundred li away from the southwest corner of the city there are the remnant foundations of a monastery, beside which is a stupa that often issues a divine light and manifests spiritual signs. People come here from far and near to say prayers. This was a site where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down in ancient times.

Going southwest for more than one hundred li from the old monastery, I reached Tilaḍhāka Monastery. It consists of four courts, three-storied pavilions, lofty terraces, and gates that open wide, leading from one to another. All of these were built by the last descendant of King Bimbisāra. He selectively invited people of high talent and widely summoned those of great virtue. Scholars of foreign countries and wise people from distant lands, one after another, came in groups of the same caliber and stayed [in this monastery]. There are thousands of monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings. At the end of the path, facing the middle gate, are three shrines that are adorned with wheel signs on the roofs and have bells and chimes suspended in the air. On the terrace below there are spacious balustrades all around. The doors, windows, beams, outer walls, and stairs are embellished with gilt or copper ornaments in relief. In the middle shrine there is a standing statue of the Buddha, thirty feet in height, while in the left one is a statue of Tārā Bodhisattva and in the right one a statue of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. All three statues, cast in brass, are austere in appearance and spread far-reaching divine 913c precepts. In each of the three shrines there is one sheng of [the Buddha’s] relic bones, which sometimes emit a divine light and show signs of unusual auspiciousness from time to time.

At a distance of over ninety li to the southwest of Tilaḍhāka Monastery I reached a great mountain where spirits and immortals dwell among the dense clouds and rocks lie in seclusion, venomous snakes and violent dragons lurk in the hollows of the marshes, fierce animals hide in the woods, and birds of prey perch on the trees. On the summit of the mountain is a large flat rock on which is built a stupa over ten feet high. This was a place where the Buddha once sat in samādhi.

Formerly the Tathāgata once came here through supernatural power and sat on this rock in the samādhi of complete cessation for an entire night. The devas, spiritual beings, and saints made offerings to him, performed celestial music, and heavenly flowers rained down. After the Tathāgata had emerged from the state of samādhi the heavenly beings, out of feelings of respect and admiration, constructed a stupa with gems, gold, and silver, but over the course of time the precious substances have turned into stone. Since ancient times nobody has ever visited the stupa. Looking from afar at the high mountain one can see strange beings, long snakes, and fierce animals circumambulating to the right around the stupa, and devas, immortals, spirits, and saints coming one after another to sing praise. On a hillock to the east of the mountain is a stupa built at the place where the Tathāgata once walked and stopped to look back at the country of Magadha.

At a spur of a hill over thirty li to the northwest of the mountain there is a monastery built on an elevated place backed by a ridge, with lofty pavilions excavated on the precipices. There are more than fifty monks, all of whom study the Mahayana teachings. This was the place where Guṇamati (known as Dehui, “Virtue-wisdom,” in Chinese) Bodhisattva subdued the heretics.

There was once on this mountain a brahman named Mādhava, who was a follower of the theories of the Sāṃkhya school and practiced the same accordingly. He was an expert in both Buddhist and heretical doctrines and could speak well on the principles of nonexistence and existence. His fame excelled that of his predecessors and his virtue won the respect of his contemporaries. The king esteemed him as national treasure and the ministers and common people honored him as their personal teacher. Scholars of neighboring countries accepted his style of learning, respected him for his virtue, and regarded him as a pioneer. He was indeed a learned and erudite man. He lived on the fief of two cities in an abode surrounded by feudal lands.

At that time Guṇamati Bodhisattva of South India had been a person of intelligence since his childhood. He was exquisite in learning in his early days, had thoroughly mastered the Tripiṭaka, and perfectly understood the Four Noble Truths. When he heard that Mādhava’s theories were most profound and abstruse he decided to frustrate his vainglory. He sent a disciple to the brahman with the following message, “I respectfully inquire after Mādha va’s health and hope you are living in peace and happiness. It befits you to forget about fatigue and make a good review of your past learning. In three years I shall put an end to your good repute.” In the second and third years he repeated the message to the brahman. When he was about to start out on the journey [to see the brahman] he wrote another letter to him, saying, “The time is drawing to an end. How is the progress of your studies? You should know that I am coming soon.” Greatly worried and afraid, Mādhava warned his disciples and feudal tenants that from then on they should not take in any śramaṇa or heathen, and he told them to pass the notice to all others and to not infringe the admonition.

At that time Guṇamati Bodhisattva came with his pewter staff to of Mā-                           

dhava’s fief but the tenants, in keeping with the prearrangement, refused to give him lodging. The brahman reproached him, saying, “With a tonsured poll and dressed in a unusual costume, what a strange figure you are! It befits you to go away quickly and not stay here!” Guṇamati wished to defeat the brahman and desired to stay in the latter’s feudal land, so he said in polite language with a mind of compassion, “You people are pure ascetics following the worldly truth, while I am a pure ascetic practicing the superior truth. Since we all are pure ascetics, why do you reject me?” The brahman would not speak with him but instead drove him away. Having been driven out of the feudal land Guṇamati entered a great forest in which packs of fierce animals wrought havoc.

A pure believer, fearing that Guṇamati might be hurt by the animals, came with a torch and a staff in hand and said to the bodhisattva, “A Guṇamati Bodhisattva of South India whose fame has spread far is coming to hold a debate. Thus the lord of the fief, fearing that his good name might be lost in the polemic, issued a strict order to his people to not give overnight lodging to any śramaṇa. Fearing that he may be harmed by wild animals, I have come here to help him. He may go his way in safety without worry.” Guṇamati said, “I must tell you, pure believer, that I am Guṇamati.” Having heard these words the pure believer showed still deeper respect to Guṇamati and said to him, “If that is the case, you should quickly leave here.” So they came out of the dense forest and halted in an open marshland, where the pure believer built a fire. Holding a bow in his hand he walked all around. When the night had passed he said to Guṇamati, “You should go now, lest people get wind of you and come to injure you.” Guṇamati said with thanks, “I will never forget your kindness.”

He then went to the palace and said to the gatekeeper, “A śramaṇa coming from a great distance wishes to obtain the permission of the king to hold a debate with Mādhava.” Having heard this announcement, the king was amazed and said, “This man must be crazy!” Then he ordered a messenger to go to the place of Mādhava to declare his edict, saying, “A strange śramaṇa has come and begged to hold a debate [with you]. The ground for the argumentation has been swept clean and an announcement has been sent out far and near. I hope you will kindly attend the meeting with your gracious presence.” Mādhava asked the messenger, “Is the man the śāstra master Guṇamati of South India?” The messenger said, “Yes.” Mādhava was greatly displeased to hear this but he could not decline the invitation, so he went to the venue of contention. The king and his ministers, as well as scholars, common people, and nobles, gathered at the meeting, wishing to listen to the learned discussion.

Guṇamati put forward his proposition first, but up until sunset Mādhava refused to offer a retort, on the excuse that because of his his advanced age he could not give a prompt reply but had to leave and quietly ponder the question before returning to give his refutation. For every new point [raised by his opponent] he always said that he must leave before making a reply. The next morning, after he had taken his seat in the discussion, he could not utter a word in refutation and on the sixth day he died, vomiting blood. On his deathbed he said to his wife, “You are a woman of great talent and you must not forget the shame I have suffered.” Mādhava’s death was kept

secret and his wife, attired in gorgeous dress, came to the meeting. The people in the assembly made a hubbub and said among themselves, “Mā dhava is self-conceited and is too shy to face Guṇamati, so he has sent his wife to come to the meeting. It is apparent who is superior and who is inferior.” Guṇamati Bodhisattva said to Mādhava’s wife, “The one who can subjugate you has been subjugated by me.” The woman then beat a hasty retreat in the face of these difficulties.

The king said [to Guṇamati], “What secret words did you say that made the woman go away in silence?” Guṇamati said, “What a pity! Mādhava is dead! His wife came with the intention of holding the debate with me.” The king said, “How do you know this? Please tell me.” Guṇamati said in reply, “When she came she had a sorrowful look of mourning and her voice betrayed her feelings of grief and sadness. That is how I knew that Mādhava had died. By saying ‘the one who can subjugate you,’ I was referring to her husband.” The king then sent someone to see what had happened and he found that the situation was just as had been described. The king said in self-reproach, “The buddha-dharma is abstruse and wonderful and has brilliant sages coming forth in succession; nonaction is the way that benefits living beings. According to the original institutions and regulations of our country, I shall praise and honor people of virtue in the usual manner.” Guṇamati said, “Stupid as I am, I practice the Way and abide by chastity; I observe the precepts of contentment and self-restraint and study the means to help others. Whenever I attempt to induce someone [to the right path] I always first suppress his arrogance and then convert him in an appropriate way. Now it is time for me to request Your Majesty to assign all the tenants of Mādhava’s fiefs to become [monks] in the monastery for innumerable generations, so as to leave an example for people in the future and transmit the fame of these good deeds forever. As for the pure believer who gave me protection, I hope he will live blissfully in the world and enjoy the same provisions that are given to the monks, in order to persuade people to have pure faith, as well as to exalt his profound goodness.” Thus this monastery was constructed for the glorification of this superior event.

When Mādhava was first vanguished in the debate, dozens of brahmans fled to take refuge in a neighboring country, and they informed the brahmans of that land about the shameful affair. They recruited brilliant scholars and returned home to seek vengeance for the former insult. As the king respected Guṇamati, he went in person to invite the latter, saying, “Some heretics who overrate their own abilities have organized a party, formed cliques, and ventured to sound the drum to demand that a debate be held. I hope that you, Venerable Sir, will crush these heretics.” Guṇamati said, “The debaters may be called to an assembly.” The heretical scholars were delighted to hear this and said among themselves in consolation, “We shall certainly win the case today!” Then the heretics expounded their theoretical principles. Guṇamati Bodhisattva said, “These heretics here have taken refuge in a distant land and, according to the king’s former ordinance, they have become contemptible.

How can I debate with them face to face?” At that time Guṇamati had a page to serve him as a seat carrier, and that man often heard his master’s supererogatory disputations and had become adept in discussing the gist of subtle teachings. As he stood by the side of his master, listening to his eloquent talk, Guṇamati clapped his seat and said, “Seat carrier, you may debate with them.” All the people in the assembly were surprised by this. The page then began to raise questions. His words of deep meaning flowed like a spring and his clear eloquence echoed in the air. In three rounds the heretics were vanquished in the disputation, the sharpness of their tongues blunted and the shafts of the fletching of their arrows broken. Because they had been defeated in the 914c debate they were made feudal tenants of the monastery.

More than twenty li to the southwest of Guṇamati Monastery is an isolated hill, with a monastery built by the śāstra master Śīlabhadra (known as Jiexian, “Precept-virtue,” in Chinese) with the revenue of a city that was donated to him as a reward for a successful discussion. The shape of the isolated hill resembled a stupa for the preservation of the Buddha’s relics. The śāstra master, a brahman by caste, was the scion of the royal family of the country of Samataṭa. When he was young he was fond of learning and had a good character. He traveled to various parts of India in search of people of wisdom. When he came to Nālandā Monastery in this country he met with Dharmapāla Bodhisattva, from whom he heard about the Dharma with faith and understanding, and under whose guidance he donned the dyed robe of a monk. He inquired into the consummate principles and sought the way of emancipation. He mastered both the ultimate truth and the subtle theories. He was well known in his own time and his fame was high in foreign regions.

There was then in South India a heretic who sought into profound teachings and delved into what was kept secret, having a thorough comprehension of abstruse knowledge and a keen insight into subtle tenets. Hearing of Dharmapāla’s high repute, he became deeply jealous and resentful. Despite the obstacles of mountains and rivers he came to beat the drum and demanded to hold a discussion with him. He said [to the king], “I am a man from South India. I have heard that in your kingdom there is a great śāstra master. Although I am not clever I wish to have a full discussion with him.” The king said, “Yes, we have such a person, as you say.” Then he sent a messenger to invite Dharmapāla, saying, “A heretic of South India has come from a distance of no less than one thousand li, wishing to hold a competitive discussion with you. I hope you will condescend to come to the debate ground.”

Having heard this message, Dharmapāla tidied his robe and made ready to go. His disciple Śīlabhadra, an outstanding young man, stepped forward and said, “Why are you going in such a hurry?” Dharmapāla said, “Since the Sun of Wisdom ceased to shine and the Lamp of Transmitting the Dharma became extinct, heretics have massed like ants and heterodox views have spread like wasps flying in swarms. Therefore I must go crush that debater.” Śīlabhadra said, “I have heard with respect your supererogatory discussions, with which I dare to defeat the heterodox follower.” Knowing that he was a man of outstanding talent, Dharmapāla gave his consent to the request. Śīla- bhadra was then just thirty years old and the assembly slighted him as being too young, fearing that it would be difficult for him to combat his opponent by himself. Knowing that the assembly was not content with the choice, Dharmapāla said in explanation, “What is valued in a person is his good learning and intelligence, not his age. In view of the present situation [Śīlabadhra] is sure to defeat the heretic.” On the day of the discussion young and old people coming from far and near gathered together. The heretic widely expounded his theories to the utmost extent, but Śīla bhadra refuted him through reasoning in a most profound and abstruse way. Having exhausted his words, the heretic departed in shame.

As a reward for [Śīlabhadra’s] virtue the king wished to give him this city as a fief. The śāstra master declined the offer, saying, “I am a monk dressed in the dyed robe, living in contentment and keeping myself in purity. What is the use of a fief for me?” The king said, “The King of the Dharma has disappeared and the Ships of Wisdom have sunk, one after another. If there is no distinction [made to the worthy ones] how can we encourage scholars of the younger generation? In order to spread the right Dharma I hope you will kindly accept the gift.” Unable to decline the offer, śāstra master Śīlabhadra accepted the city as his fief. He constructed a monastery according to the reg- 915a ulations and provided daily necessities for the monks with the revenue from the city.

Going southwest for forty or fifty li from Śīlabhadra Monastery, I crossed the Nairañjanā River and reached the city of Gayā. This city is strongly built but only sparsely populated, having only some one thousand brahman families, the descendants of a great risk. The king did not make them his subjects and the people honor them respectfully. More than thirty li to the north of the city is a clear spring, which is regarded in Indian tradition as holy water. [It is believed that] when one drinks the water or washes in it his or her sinful defilements are purified. Five or six li to the southwest of the city is Gayā Mountain, with deep valleys and far-reaching streams among steep peaks and high cliffs. In India it is traditionally called Spiritual Mountain. Since ancient times whenever kings and monarchs ascended the throne, exerted influence on distant peoples, or excelled their predecessors in virtue, they all came to this mountain to make an announcement of their achievements. On top of the mountain is a stone stupa more than one hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. It has latent spiritual power and emits a divine light from time to time. This is the place where the Tathāgata formerly preached the Ratnamegha-sūtra and other scriptures.

To the southeast of Gayā Mountain is a stupa built at the birthplace of Kāśyapa, and to the south are two stupas built at the places where GayāKāśyapa and Nadī-Kāśyapa worshiped fire. At the place where Gayā-Kāśyapa worshiped fire, crossing a big river to the east, one reaches Prāgbodhi Mountain (known as Qianzhengjueshan, “Preenlightenment Mountain,” in Chinese, as the Tathāgata ascended this mountain prior to his realization of perfect enlightenment). After striving hard for six years he had not yet attained perfect enlightenment so he gave up austerities and accepted milk gruel. When the Tathāgata came from the northeast to this mountain he saw that it was a quiet place and wished to gain enlightenment there. From the northeast ridge he climbed up to the summit of the mountain, and the earth quaked and the mountain trembled. The mountain god was frightened and told the Bodhisattva, “This mountain is not a blessed place for you to achieve enlightenment. If you stay here and enter the diamond samādhi the earth will sink and the mountain will topple over.” The Bodhisattva came down by the southwest side of the mountain. Halfway down the mountain there was a large cave with its back to the crag and its mouth opening on a brook in front. The Bodhisattva went in and sat cross-legged. The earth quaked again and the mountain trembled for a second time. At that time beings of the Heaven of Pure Abode chanted in the air, “This is not the place for the Tathāgata to achieve enlightenment. Fourteen or fifteen li southwest from here, not far from the place where you practiced austerities, there is a pipal tree, under which is a diamond seat. It is on this seat that all the buddhas of the past and future sit to achieve perfect enlightenment. Please go there!” But the dragon 915b of the cave said, “This cave is a quiet and suitable place for you to attain sainthood. May you have compassion and not relinquish it.” Knowing that this was not the place for him to realize Buddhahood the Bodhisattva left his shadow in the cave to satisfy the dragon’s wishes and departed. (This shadow was formerly visible to both the wise and the ignorant but now only some people are able to see it.) Preceded by heavenly beings, the Bodhisattva went to the bodhi tree. Later, after King Aśoka rose to power, he built monuments and stupas at the sites where the Bodhisattva ascended and descended the mountain. Though these monuments differ in size they are the same in showing spiritual signs, either raining celestial flowers or emitting a light that illuminates the deep valleys. Every year at the end of the summer retreat monks and laypeople from different places come here to make offerings and spend two nights before going home.

Going southwest from Prāgbodhi Mountain for fourteen or fifteen li, I reached the bodhi tree. The surrounding walls are built high and strong out of brick; they are long from east to west and narrow from south to north, and are about five hundred paces in circuit. Exotic trees and famous flowers cast continuous shade on the ground, and fine sand and strange plants cover the earth with a green quilt. The main gate opens east toward the Nairañjanā River and the southern gate is near a large flower pool. The west side is an inaccessible natural barrier, while the northern gate leads to a big monastery. Inside the enclosure the sacred sites are connected with one another. The stupas or shrines were all built by monarchs, ministerial officials, and nobles of various countries of Jambudvīpa as memorials to their acceptance of the bequeathed teachings of the Buddha.

At the center of the enclosure of the bodhi tree is the diamond seat, which came into existence together with the great earth at the beginning of the bhadrakalpa. It is in the middle of the three-thousand great chiliocosm, reaching down to the golden wheel below the surface of the earth. It is made of diamond and is over a hundred paces in circuit. Because the one thousand buddhas of the bhadrakalpa all sit on it to enter the diamond samādhi, it is called the diamond seat, and because it is the place for realizing the sacred Way it is also called the bodhimaṇḍa (“seat for realizing Buddhahood”). Whenever the earth quakes this spot alone remains stable. Thus, when the Tathāgata was about to attain enlightenment, the four corners of this seat trembled in the directions of where he had traveled to, but when he came here it was calm and quiet, without agitation. Since the beginning of the period of decline at the end of the kalpa, when the right Dharma started to deteriorate, this site was covered by sand and earth and was lost to view. After the Buddha’s nirvana the monarchs of various countries set up two sitting statues of Avalokiteśvara facing east at the southern and northern limits of the enclosure, according to the Buddha’s description as they had heard from the tradition. Some old people said that when the statues of [Avalokiteśvara] disappear and become invisible the buddha-dharma will come to an end. The statue at the south corner has already sunk down up to the chest.

The bodhi tree at the diamond seat is a pipal tree, which was several hundred feet tall in the time of the Buddha, and although it has been cut down or damaged several times it still remains forty or fifty feet high. Because the

Buddha attained full enlightenment while sitting under this tree, it is called

the bodhi tree (“tree of enlightenment”). The trunk of the tree is yellowish white in color and its branches and leaves are always green; they never wither nor does their luster decrease, whether in winter or summer. Each year on the day of the Tathāgata’s nirvana the leaves fade and fall but they grow out again very soon. On that day the monarchs of various countries and monks and laypeople from different places, thousands and myriads in number, gather here of their own will to water and bathe the tree with scented water and milk, accompanied by music. With arrays of fragrant flowers and lamps burning uninterruptedly, the devotees vie with each other in making offerings to the tree.

After the Tathāgata’s demise, when King Aśoka first ascended the throne he believed in heretical doctrines and he destroyed the sites left by the Buddha. He sent his troops and came in person to cut down the bodhi tree. He chopped the roots, stalks, branches, and leaves into small pieces and had them heaped up at a spot a few tens of paces to the west, where fire-worshiping brahmans were ordered to burn the pile as a sacrifice to their god. Before the smoke and flames had dissipated, however, two trees with luxuriant and verdant leaves grew out of the furious fire; these trees were thus called ash bodhi trees. On seeing this strange sight, King Aśoka repented his misdeeds and water the remnant roots with sweet milk. When it was nearly dawn the tree grew up as before. The king, greatly exhilarated to have seen this spiritual wonder, made offerings to the tree in person with such delight that he forgot to return home. The queen, a heretical believer, secretly sent someone to cut down the tree after nightfall. When King Aśoka went to worship the tree at dawn he was very sad to see only the stump of the tree. He prayed earnestly and watered the stump with sweet milk, and in a few days the tree grew up once again. With deep respect and astonishment the king built a stone enclosure to the height of more than ten feet around the tree, which is still in existence. Recently King Śaśāṅka, a heretical believer, denounced the buddha dharma out of jealousy, destroyed monasteries, and cut down the bodhi tree [again]. He dug the ground so deep as to reach spring water but he could not get at the ends of the roots, so he set fire to burn it and soaked it with sugarcane juice with the intention of making it rotten and prevent it from sprouting. Several months later, King Pūrṇavarman (known as Manzhou, “Full Armor,” in Chinese) of Magadha, the last descendant of King Aśoka, heard about the event and said with a sigh of regret, “The Sun of Wisdom has sunk and only the Buddha’s tree remained in the world; now that the tree has been destroyed what else is there for living beings to see?” He prostrated himself on the ground and wept piteously. He watered the tree with milk obtained from several thousand cows and it grew up to some ten feet high in one night. Fearing that people of later times might cut it down [again], he surrounded it with a stone enclosure to the height of twenty-four feet. Thus the bodhi tree at present is behind the stone wall, and more than ten feet of branches grow out above the wall.

To the east of the bodhi tree is a shrine, one hundred and sixty or seventy feet high, built on a base whose front side is more than twenty paces wide. It was built with brick and plastered with lime. In all the niches arranged in tiers there are golden images, and on the four walls are marvelous carvings in the shapes of strings of pearls or figures of spirits. On top is installed a gilded copper āmalaka fruit (also said to be a precious bottle or a precious pot). It is connected with a storied pavilion at the east, the eaves of which 916a are in three layers. The rafters, pillars, ridgepoles, beams, doors, and windows are adorned with gold and silver carvings and studded with a mixture of

pearls and jade. The innermost chamber of the shrine has three doors connecting with the other parts of the structure. On each side of the outer door there is a niche containing an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva on the left side and one of Maitreya Bodhisattva on the right side, both cast in silver and more than ten feet in height.

Formerly King Aśoka built a small shrine at the site of the [present] shrine and a brahman later extended it. There was once a brahman who did not believe in the buddha-dharma but worshiped the deity Maheśvara. He heard that the deity was living in the Snow Mountains, so he went with his younger brother to seek the fulfillment of his wishes from the deity. The deity said, “Your wishes can be fulfilled only when you have done meritorious deeds. It is not that you can get things by merely saying prayers, nor can I make you satisfied.” The brahman said, “What meritorious deed should I do so that my mind can be satisfied?” The deity said, “If you wish to plant the seed of goodness you should find the field of blessedness. The bodhi tree is the place where the Buddha attained Buddhahood, so you should quickly go back to the bodhi tree and build a great shrine, dig out a large pond, and make various offerings. Then your wishes will be fulfilled.” Under the deity’s injunction the brahman, cherishing a mind of great faith, returned with his younger brother. The elder one built the shrine and the younger one excavated the pond. Then they made rich offerings to seek the fulfillment of their wishes. They finally realized their wishes and became cabinet ministers to the king. They gave away as alms whatever emoluments or rewards they received.

When the shrine was completed artists were invited to make an image of the Tathāgata as he appeared at the time of attaining Buddhahood, but for a long time no one answered the call for the job. At last a brahman came and said to the monks, “I am good at making fine images of the Tathāgata.” The monks said, “What do you need for making the image?” The brahman said, “I only need some scented clay and a lamp to be placed inside the shrine. After I have entered the shrine the door should be tightly closed, and only opened again after six months.” The monks did as they were told, but just four days short of six months they opened the door out of curiosity to see [what was going on]. They saw that the image inside the shrine was in the posture of sitting cross-legged facing the east, with the right foot upon [the left thigh]; the left hand was drawn back and the right one pointed downward.

It was just as if the figure was alive. The pedestal was four feet two inches high and twelve feet five inches wide, and the image was eleven feet five inches tall. The two knees were eight feet eight inches apart, and the width from one shoulder to another measured six feet two inches. All the auspicious physical symbols of a buddha were complete and the compassionate features were true to reality, except that a little spot above the right breast was unfinished. The monks saw no one in the shrine and realized that a divine hand was at work. They were all filled with amazement and eagerly wished to know about the affair. One of the śramaṇas, a simple man of honest mind, had a dream in which he saw the brahman, who said to him, “I am Maitreya Bodhisattva. Concerned that artists could not imagine the holy features of 916b the Buddha, I came in person to make the image. It is made with the right hand pointing downward because just as the Tathāgata was about to attain Buddhahood Māra came to disturb him, but the earth gods informed him of Māra’s arrival. One of the earth gods came out first to assist the Buddha in subjugating Māra but the Tathāgata said to the god, ‘Do not worry. I can surely subjugate him with my power of forbearance.’ Māra said, ‘Who will bear you witness?’ The Tathāgata then pointed his hand to the earth, saying, ‘This one here will bear me witness!’ At that moment the second earth god emerged to bear witness. Therefore the image is made with the right hand pointing downward.” The monks came to know that this was a divine manifestation and they were all moved to tears. The unfinished spot above the breast was finished with various gems and the image was adorned with a necklace of pearls, crowned with a coronet, and embellished with other valuable ornaments.

When King Śaśāṅka felled the bodhi tree he also wished to destroy this image. But when he looked at the compassionate features of the image he did not have the heart to do so. On returning home he told his attendant minister, “You should remove this image of the Buddha and replace it with that of Maheśvara.” Having received the king’s edict, the attendant minister was afraid and said with a sigh, “If I destroy the Buddha’s image I will suffer disaster for many kalpas, but if I disobey the king’s order I will not only lose my own life but also bring about the extermination of my entire family. What should I do in this awkward plight?” He then called some Buddhist believers to work as his servants and had them build a brick wall in front of the Buddha’s image. Because he was ashamed to see the image in utter darkness he lit a lamp for it. On the front of the brick wall he drew a picture of Maheśvara. When this was done he made a report to the king. On hearing the report the king dreaded the consequences. He suffered from blisters all over his body, his skin became cracked, and before long he died.

The attendant minister hurriedly went back to the image and demolished the brick wall [that screened it from view]. Though many days had passed the lamp still burned, without extinction. The image is still in existence and because it is in a deep inner chamber lamps and torches burn continually. The compassionate features cannot be clearly seen unless early-morning sunlight is reflected  into the chamber with a big mirror to illuminate the divine statue. Those who have the chance to see the image are struck with emotion.

The Tathāgata attained perfect enlightenment on the eighth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha in the Indian calendar, corresponding to the eighth day of the third month in our calendar, but according to the tradition of the Sthavira school the event occurred on the fifteenth day of the second half of the month of Vaiśākha, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the third month in our calendar. He was then around thirty or thirty-five years old.

To the north of the bodhi tree is a place where the Buddha walked up and down. After achieving perfect enlightenment the Tathāgata did not rise from his seat but sat in meditation for seven days. When he rose to his feet he went to the north of the bodhi tree, where he walked to and fro, east and west, for seven days. When he had walked over ten paces signs of wondrous flowers followed his footprints at eighteen points. People of later times built a brick promenade about three feet high at this place. It is said in a previous record that this sacred site can foretell the length of one’s life. One should make a

sincere vow before taking the measure. The length of the promenade varies according to the possible life spans of those who measure it.

To the north of the promenade, on a huge rock on the right side of the road, is a big shrine in which there is an image of the Buddha with its eyes gazing upward. Formerly the Tathāgata looked at the bodhi tree from this place for seven days without blinking, gazing at the tree attentively with a feeling of gratitude.

Not far to the west of the bodhi tree is a great shrine with a brass image of the Buddha in the standing posture, facing east, adorned with rare jewels. In front of the image is a blue stone with wonderful veins of various hues.

This is the place where Brahmā built a hall out of the seven precious substances and Indra made a seat, also with the seven precious substances, at the time when the Tathāgata first attained enlightenment. On this seat he sat in meditation for seven days and emitted an unusual light that shone upon the bodhi tree. The precious substances have since turned into stone because the event occurred in the remote past.

Not far to the south of the bodhi tree is a stupa more than one hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. After having bathed himself in the Nairañjanā River, the Bodhisattva was going to the bodhi tree and pondered what he should use for a seat. He got the idea of using some clean grass to make a seat. Meanwhile Indra transformed himself into a grass cutter, carrying a bundle of grass going on his way. The Bodhisattva said to him, “Can you favor me with some of your grass?” The transformed figure respectfully offered him some grass and, after receiving the grass, the Bodhisattva proceeded on his way.

Not far to the northeast of the spot of receiving grass is a stupa built at the place where some bluebirds (Eophona personata) and a herd of deer came as a good omen when the Bodhisattva was about to achieve Buddhahood. Among the signs of auspiciousness in India their presence is considered to be  the most lucky symbol. Thus, in compliance with the custom of the human world, the celestial beings of the Heaven of Pure Abode made the bluebirds fly around the Bodhisattva to indicate his spirituality and holiness.

To the east of the bodhi tree are two stupas, one on the left and the other on the right side of the main road. This is the place where the King of Māras disturbed the Bodhisattva. When the Bodhisattva was about to attain buddha hood the King of Māras exhorted him to become a supreme ruler [instead of a buddha]. As this device was ineffective, the King of Māras withdrew in deep sadness. His daughters volunteered to go to seduce the Bodhisattva but with his divine power he changed the beautiful girls into decrepit old women. They retreated, clinging to each other, holding sticks to support their slender frames.

In a shrine to the northwest of the bodhi tree there is an image of Kāśyapa Buddha. Well known for its spirituality and sanctity, it often emits a bright light. It is said in a previous record that if a person walks around the image seven times with utmost sincerity he may gain the wisdom of knowing where he was born in his past life.

To the northwest of the shrine of Kāśyapa Buddha there are two brick chambers, each housing an image of an earth god. One informed the Buddha of the arrival of Māra and the other bore witness for the Buddha. People of 917a later times made these images of the gods in memory of their merits.

Not far to the west of the bodhi tree enclosure is a stupa more than forty feet high,  known as Saffron Stupa, built by a merchant lord of the country of Jāguḍa. Formerly in the country of Jāguḍa there was a great merchant lord who worshiped heavenly gods to pray for wealth, and he despised the buddha dharma and did not believe in the law of causality. He once led a group of fellow traders to do business and sailed to the South Sea, where they encountered a typhoon and lost their way. They drifted along with the roaring waves and sailed on the sea for three years until their rations were exhausted and they had nothing more to eat. All those who were aboard the ship were in a precarious situation and they earnestly prayed to the gods they worshiped with one mind. They become quite fatigued with their laborious prayers and had failed to receive divine rescue, when they suddenly saw a huge mountain with lofty cliffs and steep peaks under the light of two bright suns. The merchants said to comfort one another, “We are lucky to have come across this huge mountain. We should stop here to get peace and happiness.” The merchant lord said, “It is not a mountain but a makara fish (a sea monster). The lofty cliffs and steep peaks are its fins and whiskers and the two bright suns are its eyes.” Just as they had barely finished talking the ship floated toward the monster. The merchant lord told his fellow traders, “I have heard that Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva will bestow peace and happiness on those who are in peril and adversity. Let us call his name with a mind of complete sincerity.” Then they all repeated the name of [Avalokiteśvara] Bodhisattva in unison and sought refuge under his spiritual protection. The lofty mountain disappeared and the two suns submerged. In a moment they saw a śramaṇa with a quiet and peaceful manner coming through the air, religious staff in hand, to rescue them from being drowned. Very soon they returned to their own country. Thereafter they cherished minds of resolute faith and tried to perform good deeds indefatigably. They built a stupa for making offerings and plastered the whole structure with saffron clay.

Having cherished the mind of faith, the merchant lord led his fellow traders to worship the holy sites and visit the bodhi tree. They spent a whole month in pilgrimage before they thought of returning home. The traders, while traveling together, said among themselves, “We are far away from our homeland, separated by mountains and rivers. Since we are here, who will sweep and clean the stupa we have built?” Having said this, they came in a roundabout way to this place and suddenly saw a stupa. Surprised at the sight, they went up to have a close look at the stupa and found that it was the one they had built at home. Thus it was named the Saffron Stupa in India.

At the southeast corner of the bodhi tree enclosure there is a banyan tree, and next to it are a stupa and temple. A statue of the seated Buddha is enshrined in the temple. Formerly, when the Tathāgata had just attained Buddhahood, Mahābrahmā came here and entreated him to turn the wonderful wheel of the Dharma. At each of the four corners inside the bodhi tree enclosure there is a great stupa. Formerly, when the Tathāgata had received the auspicious grass, he went to the bodhi tree. He went first to the four corners and the 917b earth quaked but it became quiet and calm when he reached the diamond seat. Inside the enclosure are many sacred sites located as closely together as the scales of a fish, and it is difficult to describe them all in full detail. At the southwest corner outside the bodhi tree enclosure is a stupa that marks the site of the old house of the two milkmaids who offered milk gruel [to the Buddha]. Beside it is another stupa, marking the place where the milkmaids cooked the gruel, and next to this stupa is the place where the Tathāgata received the gruel.

Outside the south gate of the bodhi tree enclosure is a big pond more than seven hundred paces in circuit, with clear and lucid water in which dragons and fish dwell. It was dug by the younger brother of a brahman under the order of Maheśvara. Next, to the south is a pool that was magically produced by Indra when the Tathāgata wished to wash his clothes after having attained enlightenment. At the west of the pool is a big rock that was brought here by Indra from the Great Snow Mountains when the Buddha wished to dry his washed clothes in the sun. Beside the rock is a stupa where the Tathāgata mended his old clothes. Next, to the south is a stupa in a wood, which was the place where the Tathāgata accepted the old clothes offered by a poor old woman as alms.

To the east of the pool produced by Indra there is a wood in which the pond of the dragon king Mucilinda is located; the water is clear, dark, and sweet-tasting. On the west bank is a small shrine in which is installed an image of the Buddha. Formerly, after the Tathāgata had just attained enlightenment he sat in meditation for seven days in this place. The dragon king protected the Tathāgata by surrounding him with his body in seven coils, while its many heads reached over him to serve as a canopy. On the east bank of the old pool is the chamber of the dragon king.

In a wood to the east of the dragon Mucilinda’s pool is a shrine with an image of the Buddha in an emaciated condition. Beside the shrine is the place where he walked up and down, more than seventy paces long, and there are two pipal trees, one at the south and the other at the north side of the promenade. In the past and at present it is the custom of the local people to anoint the image with fragrant oil when they are afflicted with a disease, and in most cases they are cured of their illness. This was the place where the Buddha practiced austerities. In order to subdue the heretics, and also at Māra’s request, he practiced asceticism for six years, eating only one grain of sesame and one grain of rice each day, reducing himself to a mere skeleton and becoming so feeble that he had to hold onto the branch of a tree to stand up to take a walk.

Beside the pipal tree where the Bodhisattva practiced austerities is a stupa at the place where Ājñāta-Kauṇḍinya and his four companions made their abode. After Prince [Siddhārtha] renounced his home to wander in the mountains and marshlands and dwell in woods or by springs, King Śuddhodana sent these five men to look after and serve him. Because the prince practiced austerities, Ājñāta-Kauṇḍinya and the others also diligently did the same.

To the southeast of the abode of Ājñāta-Kauṇḍinya and the others is a

stupa where the Bodhisattva entered the Nairañjanā River to bathe. Not far from the river is the spot where the Bodhisattva accepted and ate the milk gruel. The stupa beside the spot is the place where two elders offered baked barley and honey [to the Buddha]. The Buddha was sitting cross-legged in silent meditation under a tree, enjoying the bliss of emancipation for seven days before he emerged from the state of tranquility, when two merchants passed by outside the wood. The god of the wood told the merchants, “The prince of the Śākya clan is now in this wood. He has just attained Buddhahood and has been sitting in silent concentration with a fixed mind for forty-nine days without taking any food. If you offer him whatever food you may have

with you, you will receive great benefit.” Each merchant then took out from his ration bag some baked barley and honey to give as offerings, which the World-honored One accepted.

Beside the place where the elders offered baked barley is a stupa where the four devarājas offered alms bowls [to the Buddha]. When the merchants had offered the baked barley and honey to him, the World-honored One considered what vessels he should use to hold the food. At that time the four devarājas came from the four quarters and each offered him a golden bowl, but the World-honored One declined the offer by keeping silent, thinking that it was unsuitable for a mendicant to use such an [opulent] bowl. The four deva rājas took away the golden bowls and offered silver ones, and in succession they presented bowls of crystal, lapis lazuli, agate, coral, and pearl, but the World-honored One declined them all. The four devarājas then returned to their respective palaces and brought back stone bowls of a dark violet color with a brilliant luster. In order to avoid showing partiality the World-honored One accepted all four bowls, which he stacked and pressed together into one bowl. That is why his alms bowl has four rims on the outside.

Not far from the place where the four devarājas offered alms bowls is a stupa where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for his mother. After the Tathāgata had attained perfect enlightenment with the title of Teacher of Heavenly and Human Beings, his mother, Lady Mahāmāyā, descended from her heavenly palace and the World-honored One taught her according to her capacity for her benefit and happiness. Beside this place, on the bank of a dried-up pond, is a stupa where the Tathāgata once manifested supernatural powers to convert those who had the good causes to be present on the occasion. Beside the place of showing supernatural powers is a stupa where the Tathāgata converted Uruvilvā-Kāśyapa and his two younger brothers along with their one thousand disciples. As time passed the Tathāgata spread the good Way to conquer people, Uruvilvā-Kāśyapa’s five hundred disciples wished to accept the Buddha’s teachings. Kāśyapa said to them, “I shall also go with you to give up the erroneous way.” So all of them came to the place where the Buddha was and the Tathāgata told them, “Throw away your deerskin garb and relinquish the utensils for fire worship.” In accord with the Buddha’s holy instruction, the brahmans cast their garments and utensils into the Nairañjanā River. Seeing the sacrificial utensils drifting away on the current, Nadī-Kāśyapa and his disciples waited to see what measures his elder brother would take next. When they saw that his elder brother had

changed his religion they also followed his example and donned the dyed robes to become Buddhist monks. When Gayā-Kāśyapa and his two hundred disciples heard that his elder brothers had given up their practice, they also came to where the Buddha was and wished to lead the life of purity.

To the northwest of the place where the Kāśyapa brothers were converted is a stupa where the Tathāgata subdued the fire dragon worshiped by the Kāśyapas. Whenever the Tathāgata wished to convert someone he first subdued the object of that person’s worship. So he went to stay in the cave of the brahmans’ fire dragon. Late in the night the dragon spouted smoke and flames and the Buddha, who was sitting in meditation, also issued a bright light, illuminating the cave with the light of furious flames and blazing fire. The brahman teachers, fearing that the fire might hurt the Buddha, hurried to the spot, wailing piteously. Uruvilvā-Kāśyapa said to his disciples, “In view of the present situation it may not be a fire. The śramaṇa may be subjugating the fire dragon.” The Tathāgata then put the fire dragon into his alms bowl and showed it to the heretical disciples at dawn. The stupa beside this spot was the place where five hundred pratyekabuddhas entered nirvana simultaneously.

To the south of the pool of the dragon Mucilinda is a stupa where the Kāśyapas went to rescue the Tathāgata from drowning. The Kāśyapa brothers were highly esteemed for their supernatural powers and were respected for their virtue by people from far and near who had faith in them. In the course of exerting his great power in an appropriate way to guide and convert those who had gone astray, the World-honored One caused a dense cloud that poured down torrential rains; only the Buddha’s lodging remained dry. Seeing the clouds and rain, the Kāśyapas said to their disciples, “Might the lodging of the śramaṇa not be flooded?” They sailed in a boat to rescue the World honored One but saw that he was walking on the surface of the water just as if walking on earth, and when he walked into the river the water gave way to him and the sand on the bottom appeared [to support him]. At this sight, the Kāśyapas were reassured and departed.

Two or three li outside the enclosure of the bodhi tree is the cave of a blind dragon. Because this dragon had done evil deeds in its previous lives it had been reborn blind as its retribution. As the Tathāgata was proceeding from Prāgbodhi Mountain to the bodhi tree he passed by the cave of the blind dragon. The dragon suddenly recovered its sight and saw that the Bodhisattva was on his way to the bodhi tree. [The dragon] said to the Bodhisattva, “Kind sir, you will soon gain perfect enlightenment. I have been blind for quite a long time but whenever a buddha emerges in the world I regain my eyesight. When the past three buddhas of the bhadrakalpa appeared in the world I recovered my sight on each occasion. Now you have come here and my eyes suddenly regained perception. From this I know that you will become a buddha.”

Beside the east gate of the enclosure of the bodhi tree is a stupa where the King of Māras [tried to] frighten the Bodhisattva. Knowing that the Bodhisattva was going to achieve enlightenment and having failed to tempt him, the King of Māras did not know what to do. Worried, he called various gods to a meeting and arrayed his demon troops, arranging them in proper order, to menace the Bodhisattva. A storm rose up, thunder and lightning flashed 918b in the dark night, fire blazed and smoke rose high, and sand and stones were churned up and blown into the air. Spears and shields were fully prepared and bows and arrows employed to the utmost, but the Bodhisattva remained in the meditation of great compassion and all the weapons turned into lotus flowers. Māra’s troops became terrified and retreated in disorder. Not far from this place are two stupas, built by Indra and Brahmā.

Outside the north gate of [the enclosure of] the bodhi tree is Mahābodhi Monastery, built by a former king of the country of Siṃhala. The buildings consist of six courtyards and three-storied pavilions, surrounded by walls thirty or forty feet high. The workmanship is most wonderful and the decorative paintings are exquisitely done. The Buddha’s image is made of gold and silver and all the ornaments are embedded with gems and jewels. The stupas are lofty and spacious with wonderful adornments and they contain relics of the Tathāgata. The bone relics are of the size of a finger joint, lustrous and pure white in color and semitransparent. The flesh relics, as big as pearls, are of a pinkish-blue color. Every year on the full moon day of the month of showing the Tathāgata’s divine power of ubiquity (i.e., on the thirtieth day of the twelfth month in the Indian calendar, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the first month in China) these relics are shown to the public and a light is emitted or flowers rain down in showers. There are fewer than a thousand monks, who study the teachings of both the Mahayana and Sthavira schools. They rigorously observe the Vinaya rules, are pure in conduct, and have moral integrity.

Formerly, the king of the country of Siṃhala in the South Sea was a devout Buddhist by birth. He had a cousin who had become a monk and desired to visit the holy traces of the Buddha. So he traveled far to India and sought lodging in various monasteries, but all the local monks despised him as a frontiersman. He returned to his homeland and the king went out some distance to welcome him. The śramaṇa sobbed piteously and could not speak properly. The king said, “What is wrong with you, why are you so sad?” The śramaṇa said, “Depending upon the prestige of our country I traveled far to seek the Way. I sojourned in a foreign land and experienced the discomfort of cold and hot weather. I was often insulted for my behavior and ridiculed for my utterances. How could I be happy under such worrisome and shameful conditions?” The king said, “If that is the case, what should I do?” The śramaṇa said, “I sincerely hope that Your Majesty will pay attention to the performance of good deeds and construct a monastery in India. That will not only glorify the holy site but also build a good reputation for yourself. The blessedness of the deed will honor our forefathers and benefit our descendants as well.” The king said, “That is a good idea. How is it that I hear of it so late?”

The king [of Siṃhala] then offered all the treasures of his country to the king of India, who, after accepting the tribute and wishing to foster friendship with a distant ruler, said to the envoy, “What shall I give you to take back as a return gift?” The envoy said, “The king of Siṃhala pays homage to the King of Great Auspiciousness of India. Your prestige and virtue extend far and your kindness and benevolence cover all living beings. A śramaṇa of our humble land, out of respect and admiration for the morals and manners of your country, ventured to travel to your esteemed land to pay veneration to the holy sites. He sought lodging in various monasteries but none would 918c house him. After undergoing extreme difficulties, he returned home in shame. I humbly propose a far-reaching project that may serve as an example for coming generations: to build a monastery in India in order to provide a resting place for traveling monks, to promote good relations between our two countries, and to allow envoys to be exchanged without lapse.” The king said,

“The tradition of the Tathāgata’s subtle edification is still extant. You may choose any of the holy sites [for the construction].”

Bearing this message the envoy returned home to report to the king [of Siṃhala]. The king’s ministers prostrated themselves before him in congratulation. The śramaṇas were then convened to discuss the matter of constructing a monastery and they said, “As the bodhi tree is the place where the past buddhas attained [Buddhahood] and future buddhas will attain Buddhahood, there is no better place among all the suggestions.” The treasures of the country were donated for the construction of this monastery, and monks from the country [of Siṃhala] were sent to look after it. A copper plate was inscribed with the following words: “Selfless almsgiving is the supreme teaching taught by all buddhas and rendering assistance to those who have the cause to receive it is the explicit instruction of former sages. I, this humble person, after having succeeded to the throne, have built this monastery to glorify the holy site and to render blessedness to my ancestors, as well as to benefit the common people. The monks of my country may have free access to it and the people of the country where it stands may also enjoy the same privilege as the monks. This tradition is to be transmitted to posterity into the indefinite future.” Thus most of the monks in this monastery come from the Land of Lions.

More than ten li to the south of the bodhi tree the sacred sites are located so closely to each other that it is difficult to tell of them all in detail. Each year when the bhikṣus end the rains retreat, monks and laypeople, hundreds and thousands in number, come here from the four quarters, holding flowers, playing music, and wandering in the woods to perform acts of veneration and make offerings for seven days and nights.

According to the Buddha’s holy teachings, the monks of India commence the rains retreat on the first day of the first half of the month of Śrāvaṇa, corresponding to the sixteenth day of the fifth month in China, and the retreat ends on the fifteenth day of the second half of the month of Aśvayuja, corresponding to the fifteenth day of the eighth month in China. In India, as the months are named after the constellations, the course of time has not changed from ancient times to the present and it is invariably accepted by all schools. Probably due to misunderstanding or mistranslation from the foreign language differences in the calculations for the division of time and the fixation of the months arose. Thus [in China] the rains retreat begins on the sixteenth day of the fourth month and ends on the fifteenth day of the seventh month (one month earlier than in India).

End of Fascicle VIII of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

Fascicle IX

The Country of Magadha(Part 2)

To the east of the bodhi tree and across the Nairañjanā River there is a stupa 919a in a great wood, and to the north of the stupa is a pond where a fragrant elephant attended his mother. In the past, when the Tathāgata was practicing the deeds of a bodhisattva, he was born as the son of a fragrant elephant, living on North Mountain, and he came to the pond for pleasure. As his mother was blind, he drew pure water and fetched lotus roots to feed her with respect and filial piety; this he did for a long time. A man once lost his way while traveling through the wood, and  walked back and forth, weeping piteously. Hearing the sound, the young elephant felt pity for the man, guided him out of the wood, and showed him the way home. After the man returned home he reported to the king, “I know that a fragrant elephant is wandering about the pond in the wood. This is a rare animal and you can go capture it.” The king agreed and sent soldiers to capture the elephant. The man accompanied them as a guide but at the very moment he pointed out the young elephant for the king, both his arms fell off as if they had been severed. Even though the king was surprised by the sight he still captured the young elephant and brought him home. The young elephant refused to eat grass or drink water for a long time after he was caught. The stable keeper informed the king, who went personally to inquire into the matter. The young elephant said, “My mother is blind and is starving all day long. As I am now a captive, how can I enjoy delicious food?” Moved by the elephant’s filial sentiment, the king released him. In front of the stupa beside the pond is a stone pillar where Kāśyapa Buddha sat in meditation in the past. Beside it are places where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down.

After crossing the Mahā River to the east of the seats of the four past buddhas, I reached a great wood in which there is a stone pillar marking the place where a heretic sat in meditation and made an evil vow. In the past the

heretic Udraka Rāmaputra was someone who aspired to spiritual attainment and made his abode in the wilderness. He engaged his mind in meditation and lived in seclusion in this wood of religious practice. As he had gained the five supernormal powers and achieved the samādhi of neither thought nor non-thought, the king of Magadha highly respected him and invited the hermit to the palace for a meal every day at noon. Udraka Rāmaputra traveled through the air to and fro without interruption and the king of Magadha would look into the air and wait for him. On his arrival the king received him and gave him a seat.

Once the king was about to go out on a pleasure trip and intended to entrust

someone to serve the hermit. But there was no one in the inner palace who was competent to answer the call, except his own daughter, a courteous, well behaved, and prudent young lady with a kind heart whom no one excelled in amiability and virtue. The king of Magadha summoned his daughter and ordered her, “I am traveling to a distant place and have something to entrust to you. Please be careful to fulfill this duty to completion. The hermit Udraka Rāmaputra is someone I always venerate respectfully. When he comes at mealtimes you should serve him as I do.” Having given this instruction the king started on his journey. Under the king’ order the young maid waited for the hermit as usual, and upon his arrival she received him and took him to his seat. Due to having been in contact with a woman, Udraka Rāmaputra felt an impulse of desire and lost his supernormal powers.

After the meal was over and he was about to return the hermit found that he was no longer able to fly. Ashamed, he said deceitfully to the maid, “I have been practicing the Way and sitting in meditation with a peaceful mind for many years, and I am used to flying through the air without any leisure moments. I heard long ago that the people of the country wished to see me. Previous teachers taught us that we should work for the benefit of others as our duty. How can one work only for one’s own good and forget about altruistic considerations? I now wish to depart through the door and walk on the earth so that those who see me may gain bliss and benefit.” On hearing these words, the princess made a public announcement. Thereupon, the people hurriedly sprinkled water and swept the thoroughfare clean, and hundreds and thousands of people stood still for a long time, waiting for the appearance of the hermit.

Udraka Rāmaputra walked from the palace to the religious wood and sat down to practice meditation, but his mind was disturbed by the external environment. When he stayed in the wood he heard the crowing and chirping of crows and other birds, and when he was near the pond the splashing of fish and turtles annoyed him. His attention was distracted and his mind confused, and he lost his spirit and was unable to practice meditation. He became enraged and made an evil vow, saying, “Let me be in the future a fierce and wicked animal with the body of a leopard and the wings of a bird, preying on living creatures. My body will be three thousand li in width and each of the wings fifteen hundred li in length. I shall haunt the forests to devour the feathered tribes (birds) and enter the waters to eat aquatic animals.” After he made this vow his anger gradually abated, and through hard work he regained his original meditative state soon afterward. Before long he died and was reborn in the Heaven of Neither Thought Nor Non-thought, enjoying a life span of eighty thousand kalpas. The Tathāgata predicted that after the conclusion of his heavenly life the hermit would realize his original vow and be reborn as the ugly creature. From that time on he would cycle in the evil states of transmigration without a fixed time for his release.

To the east of the Mahā River I entered a great jungle and, going for more than one hundred li, I reached Kukkuṭapāda (known as Jizu, “Cock’s Foot,” in Chinese) Mountain, also called Gurupāda (known as Zunzu, “Sage’s Foot,” in Chinese) Mountain. The lofty peaks are extremely steep and the deep valleys seem to be bottomless. At the foot of the mountain and among the brooks there are tall trees in the valleys, and the peaks and cliffs are covered in luxuriant green grass. There are three precipitous, cloud-capped peaks, nearly touching the sky. Because Venerable Mahākāśyapa entered nirvana on this mountain people of later times, not wishing to mention his name inappropriately, called it Guru’s Foot Mountain.

    Mahākāśyapa was a śrāvaka disciple [of the Buddha] who achieved the                       919c

six supernatural powers and possessed the eight forms of liberation. When the Tathāgata had completed his career of edification and was about to enter nirvana, he told Kāśyapa, “For innumerable kalpas I diligently practiced austerities seeking the supreme Dharma for the benefit of all living beings. As I have now fulfilled my desire and expectation that I wished for in the past, I am going to enter mahānirvāṇa. I entrust to you the Dharma piṭaka and you should preserve and spread it and never let it degrade. I will leave behind the golden-thread kaṣāya that my aunt offered to me, to be transmitted to Maitreya when he becomes a buddha in the future. All those who cultivate themselves in my bequeathed teaching, whether bhikṣus, bhikṣunīs, upāsakas, or upāsikās (male and female lay devotees), should first be delivered from the cycle of transmigration.”

Having received the Buddha’s instructions, Kāśyapa upheld the right Dharma. In the twentieth year after the conclusion of the Great Council he grew tired of the impermanent world and wished to enter nirvana. He went to Kukkuṭa Mountain and climbed the north side of the mountain; going by a roundabout route he reached the southwest ridge. The peaks are dangerous and difficult to ascend, and the paths are tortuous and overgrown with weeds. He cleared the way with his pewter staff and cut down the weeds as if he were using a knife. After he had opened the mountain path he proceeded along the roundabout route in a crisscross manner. On reaching the summit he faced the northeast. Standing amid the three peaks, he held the Buddha’s kaśāya [robe] in both hands and, by the power of his vow, the three peaks closed together, leaving behind the three protuberant ridges we see now.

When Maitreya comes to the world as a World-honored One he will preach the Dharma in three assemblies. After that there will still be numerous arrogant people who will ascend this mountain and come to the place of Kāśyapa. Maitreya will snap his fingers, and the mountain peaks will open by themselves, and, seeing Kāśyapa, the people will become all the more arrogant. At this moment Mahākāśyapa will hand over the kaṣāya [to Maitreya]. After making a speech and paying homage [to the new buddha] Kāśyapa will rise into the air and manifest various divine transformations. A fire will burst forth to cremate his body and in this manner he will enter nirvana. Having seen this sight, the people will abandon their pride and then will be awakened and realize sainthood. Therefore a stupa has been built on the mountain. On quiet nights a burning torch can be seen from a distance, but if one goes up the mountain nothing can be seen.

Going more than one hundred li northeast from Kukkuṭapāda Mountain I reached Buddhavana Mountain with its lofty peaks and steep cliffs. Among the rocks is a cave where the Buddha once stayed. Beside the cave is a huge rock on which Indra and Brahmā pulverized oxhead sandalwood and rubbed

the body of the Tathāgata with the powder. Even now the rock retains a strong fragrance. The latent spirits of the five hundred arhats remain here. Those who have the chance to meet them may see them appearing as śrāmaṇeras going to the villages to collect alms. Their miraculous deeds, whether secret or manifest, are difficult to relate in detail.

Going east for more than thirty li in the deep valleys of Buddhavana Mountain, I reached Yaṣṭi Wood (known as “Stick Wood” in Chinese), full of bamboo that covers the mountain and valleys. Formerly there was a brahman who heard that Śākya Buddha was sixteen feet tall, but he doubted this and did not believe it. So he used a  sixteen-foot-long long bamboo stick to measure the height of the Buddha but each time he did so, the Buddha’s height always exceeded the length of the stick by sixteen feet. In this manner the brahman found the Buddha’s height becoming higher and higher and he could not ascertain his actual height. He cast off the stick and went away; the stick took root, [giving rise to the bamboo grove]. In the wood there is a great stupa built by King Aśoka. Formerly the Tathāgata showed great supernatural powers and preached the deep and subtle Dharma for various heavenly and human beings at this place for seven days.

In Yaṣṭi Wood there was recently an upāsaka named Jayasena (known as Shengjun, “Victorious Army,” in Chinese), a man of the kṣatriya caste of West India. He preferred to live a plain and simple life in the mountains and forests, and while he stayed in the world of illusion his mind dwelled in the state of reality. He was learned in the subtle meanings of both Buddhist and heretical texts, eloquent in discussion and perspicuous in thinking. Various śramaṇas, brahmans, heretical and heterodox scholars, kings, ministers, elders, and wealthy and powerful people approached him to seek his instructions with full conviction. His disciples could be found in six families out of ten. When he was nearly seventy years old he still devoted himself to arduous study without fatigue. He gave up all other subjects of learning and engaged himself solely in the study of Buddhist scriptures, exerting himself mentally and physically day and night.

In India it is the custom to make miniature stupas, five or six inches high, out of scented clay. Copies of scriptures are put inside these stupas, which are known as Dharma relics. When a large number of such stupas has been accumulated a great stupa is constructed to contain them all for perpetual veneration. Whenever Jayasena was teaching his disciples, as he orally inculcated them with the wonderful Dharma his hands were busy making small stupas in order to accumulate supreme bliss. At night he walked to and fro, or worshiped and recited scriptures, or sat in quiet meditation, taking no time to sleep or eat, and he never relaxed in the daytime or at night. Even when he was a hundred years old he did not lessen his effort, and over a period of thirty years he made seven koṭis of Dharma relic stupas. Each time he completed one koṭi of stupas he constructed a great stupa to contain all the small

ones for people to make offerings to, and monks were invited to celebrate religious functions. On each occasion a divine light shone brightly, an apparent spiritual manifestation, and after that a light was emitted from time to time.

More than ten li to the southwest of Yaṣṭi Wood there are two hot springs to the south of a great mountain. The water is very hot and after the Buddha had caused these springs he bathed in them. They are still in existence and the flow of clear water has never diminished. People come here from far and near to bathe and the springs may effect a cure for those who suffer from chronic illness. Beside the springs is a stupa built at a place where the Tathāgata walked up and down. Going southeast for six or seven li from Yaṣṭi Wood, I reached a great mountain. In front of a ridge of the mountain there is a stone stupa. In the past the Tathāgata once preached the Dharma at this place for the three months of the rains retreat. At that time King Bimbisāra wished to come to listen to the Dharma, so a passageway through the mountain, with stone steps more than twenty paces wide and three or four li in length, was built to the site.

Three or four li to the north of the great mountain is an isolated hill where the hermit Vyāsa once dwelled. The cave he excavated in the rock is still in existence. He imparted his teachings to his disciples and the system of his learning is still prevalent. Four or five li to the northeast of this isolated hill is a smaller isolated hill. The size of the cave excavated in the rock of the hill is large enough to provide seats for over one thousand people. In the past the Tathāgata once preached the Dharma at this place for three months. Above the cave is a big rock on which Indra and Brahmā ground oxhead sandalwood to rub the powder on the Buddha’s body. The fragrance lingering on the rock is still very strong.

At the southwest corner of the cave there is a grotto known in India as Asura’s Palace. A mischievous man, skillful in the art of sorcery, once invited [thirteen] close friends who shared the same interests, and the group of fourteen went together into the grotto. After going for thirty or forty li they came out into an open, bright place and saw city walls, terraces, and pavilions all made of gold, silver, and lapis lazuli. When they approached the city some young maidens standing by the city gate pleasntly and cordially welcomed them. Then they proceeded and eventually arrived at the inner city, where two maidservants, standing by the gate, each holding a golden tray full of flowers and incense, greeted them and said, “You must bathe yourselves in the pool, rub your bodies with incense, and put on garlands before you can be admitted in the proper manner. The sorcerer may go in right away, however.” The thirteen friends went to bathe but as soon as they entered the bathing pool they forgot everything and found themselves sitting in a paddy field on a plain thirty or forty li to the north of the grotto.

Beside the grotto there is a viaduct more than ten paces wide and four or five li in length. In the past, when King Bimbisāra was about to go to the place of the Buddha, rocks were cleared from the valley, precipices were leveled to dredge the stream, and stones were piled up and cliffs excavated to make steps leading to the place of the Buddha.

From this great mountain going east for more than sixty li, I reached the city of Kuśāgrapura (known as Shangmaogongcheng, “Superior Reed Palace City,” in Chinese). Kuśāgrapura, in the center of the country of Magadha, was the capital of previous kings in ancient times. It is so called because it abounds in superior and lucky fragrant reeds. The surrounding hills serve as its outer walls, with a narrow path leading to the west and a passage opening to the north. It is long from east to west, narrow from south to north, and more than one hundred fifty li in circuit. Karṇikāra (mayeng) trees grow everywhere on the mountain paths. The flowers have a special fragrance and are golden in color. Late in spring the whole wood becomes golden-colored.

Outside the north gate of the palace city is a stupa built at the place where Devadatta, who was on intimate terms with Ajātaśatru, loosed the intoxicated elephant Dhanapāla in an attempt to hurt the Tathāgata. The Tathāgata produced five lions from the tips of [his] five fingers to tame the drunken elephant before going on his way.

To the northeast of the place where the drunken elephant was subdued was the spot where Śāriputra attained sainthood on hearing the Dharma preached by Aśvajit (known as Masheng, “Victorious Horse,” in Chinese) Bhikṣu. When Śāriputra was a layman he was well known for his high talents and broadmindedness, and he had disciples and pupils studying under his instruction. He was once going to the great city of Rājagṛha when Aśvajit Bhikṣu was on almsround. Seeing Aśvajit from a distance, Śāriputra said to his disciples, “That man over there looks very graceful and refined in deportment. He could not be so calm and quiet in demeanor unless he has attained sainthood Let us wait here a moment and see where he is going.” Being an arhat, Aśvajit Bhikṣu was free from mental defilements and carried himself in a gentle and peaceful manner, holding a religious staff in hand. Śāriputra said to him, “Elder Sir, are you living in good health and happiness? Who is your teacher and what Dharma have you realized that you look so happy and contented?” Aśvajit said, “Do you not know that the prince of King Śuddhodana relinquished his position as a wheel-turning monarch and, out of pity for all beings in the six paths of transmigration, he practiced austerities for six years and attained perfect enlightenment and now possesses all-knowing wisdom? He is my teacher. As regards the Dharma, it is neither real nor empty and it is difficult to give a systematic exposition of it. It can be fully explained only by the buddhas. How could I, an ignorant person, discuss the matter in detail?”

Aśvajit then uttered a stanza in praise of the buddha-dharma and Śāriputra attained sainthood on hearing the stanza.

Not far to the north of the place where Śāriputra attained sainthood there is a large, deep pit beside which a stupa has been built. This was the place where Śrīgupta (known as Shengmi, “Auspicious Secrecy,” in Chinese) attempted to kill the Buddha in a fire pit and with poisoned rice. Śrīgupta had faith in the heretics and held fast to erroneous views. Some brahmans said to him, “Gautama is respected by the people of the country so we have lost our supporters. Invite him to a meal at your home. At the gate of your house dig a big pit, light a fire in it, then cover the pit with some rotten timber and camouflage it with dry earth. Poison should be put into all food and drink you serve him. Even if he escapes the fire pit he will be poisoned to death.” Following this suggestion, Śrīgupta prepared a meal and poisoned the food. All the people in the city knew that Śrīgupta plotted against the World-honored One with an evil intention, and they all exhorted the Buddha not to go [to his house] for the meal. The World-honored One told them, “Do not worry! Nothing can harm the body of a tathāgata.” He accepted the invitation and went, and as soon as his foot touched the doorsill the fire pit turned into a pool full of lotus flowers growing out of clear, lucid water. Śrīgupta was panic-stricken at this but said to his disciples, “Even if the Buddha has escaped the fire pit through magical power there is still poisoned food for him.” After the World-honored One had taken the meal he preached the wonderful Dharma and, on hearing the Dharma, Śrīgupta apologized for his misdeeds and took refuge in the Buddha.

At a bend of the mountain city to the northeast of Śrīgupta’s fire pit is a stupa where the great physician Jīvaka (wrongly transliterated as Qipo in Chinese) built a preaching hall for the Buddha. Flowers and fruit trees were planted at the open spaces around the building, and remains of the structure and new sprouts from the old plants can still be seen. When the Tathāgata was living in the world he stayed mostly in this hall. Beside it is the site of Jīvaka’s private residence; the remnant foundations and an old well still exist in ruins.

Going northeast for fourteen or fifteen li from the palace city, I reached Gṛdhrakūṭa Mountain (known in China as “Vulture Peak” or “[Vulture] Terrace,” formerly mis transcribed as Qishejue Mountain). It links with the south side of North Mountain, protruding all alone to a great height, where vultures perch; it also resembles a high terrace. The verdant mountain presents a distinct color in contrast with the sky. During the fifty years of his missionary career the Tathāgata stayed on this mountain on many occasions to preach the wonderful Dharma.

In order to hear the Buddha’s preaching, King Bimbisāra sent men to build a road leading from the foot of the mountain to the summit, more than ten paces wide and five or six li in length, across valleys and over rocks, with stones piled up into steps. There are two small stupas on the way. One is known as the place of alighting, where the king [dismounted from his carriage] to walk on foot, proceeding on his way; the other stupa is the place of where ordinary people were barred from going farther [with the king]. The summit is oblong from east to west and narrow from south to north. On the brink of the west side of the precipice is a brick shrine, high and spacious, built in a 921b marvelous style, with its door opening to the east. The Tathāgata preached

the Dharma at this place many times. There is now a life-size statue of the Tathāgata in the posture of delivering a sermon.

To the east of the shrine is an oblong stone on which the Tathāgata walked to and fro. Beside it is a great rock, fourteen or fifteen feet high and more than thirty paces in circumference. This was the place where Devadatta hurled a stone from a distance to strike the Buddha. To the south and below the cliff was the place where the Tathāgata preached the Saddharmapuṇḍarīka-sūtra in olden times. To the south of the shrine and beside a steep rock is a cave where the Tathāgata sat in meditation in days of yore. To the northwest of the Buddha’s cave there is another cave, in front of which is a huge rock where Ānanda was frightened by Māra. Once when Venerable Ānanda was sitting in meditation at this place, Māra transformed himself into a vulture and occupied the huge rock one night in the black half of the month, flapping his wings violently and shrieking terrifically to frighten Ānanda. The venerable monk was alarmed and terror-stricken. The Tathāgata, seeing him in trouble, stretched out a comforting hand through the stone wall of the cave, stroked Ānanda’s head, and said to him with great compassion, “It is merely a phantom of Māra. Do not be frightened!” Reassured, Ānanda felt at ease and happy both physically and mentally. The traces left by the bird on the rock and the hole made in the stone wall in the cave still exist despite the long passage of time. Beside the shrine there are several caves in which Śāriputra and other great arhats practiced meditation. In front of Śāriputra’s cave is a big well; it is now dried up but the mouth of the well still exists in the ruins.

A huge flat rock in the stony gully to the northeast of the shrine is the place where the Tathāgata dried his kaṣāya. The stripes of the robe left on the rock are as distinct as if they were carved on it. Beside the rock are the footprints of the Buddha. Although the traces are obscure their size and shape are still discernible. On top of North Mountain is a stupa at the place where the Tathāgata gazed at the city of Magadha and preached the Dharma for seven days.

To the west of the north gate of the mountain city is Vipula Hill. I heard the local people say that on the north side of the cliff, southwest of the hill, there used to be five hundred hot springs but now there are only a few score, Not all of them are hot springs, as some are cold and others are warm. The source of these springs is Anavatapta Lake to the south of the Snow Mountains; the water flows underground to this place. It is nice and clear and tastes the same as the water in its lake of origin. The water flows out in five hundred streams through the small hot hells, and as the fire of the hells rises up it makes the water of the springs lukewarm. All the mouths of the springs have stone carvings in the shapes of the heads of lions or white elephants; aqueducts lead the water below into tanks made of slabs of stone. People come from various places in different regions to bathe in the tanks and they can often wash away 921c their old maladies. On both the right and the left sides of the hot springs stupas and shrines were built with their foundations laid as closely together as the scales of a fish, and all of these are sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down in ancient times. This place of mountains and streams is an ideal hermitage for wise and benevolent people to take up their abodes and there must be many recluses living in seclusion in this locality.

To the west of the hot springs is Pippala Cave, in which the World-honored One always made his abode. The cavern behind the back wall of the cave is Asura’s Palace. Bhikṣus who practiced meditation mostly resided in this cave. Strange phantoms in the shapes of dragons, snakes, and lions often appeared in this cave and those who saw them were driven insane. But because this is a well-known place where holy and spiritual people stayed, others, in admiration of their edification, braved the danger and came here one after another. Recently a bhikkhu who was pure in observing the disciplinary rules and took delight in lodging at quiet and peaceful places desired to live in this cave to practice meditation. Someone advised him, “Do not go to that cave—it is full of disasters and many people have been killed. It will be difficult for you to gain mental concentration there and you might even lose your life. Heed the warnings from previous accidents and not cause yourself regret in the future.” The bhikkhu said, “No, it is not so. I am aiming my efforts at attaining Buddhahood in order to subjugate the heavenly Māra. What mischief could be worth mentioning?” He shook his pewter staff and went to the cave, where he prepared an altar and recited mantras. After ten days a young woman came out of the cavern and said to the bhikkhu, “Venerable Sir, you wear the dyed robe [of a monk] and keep the disciplinary rules so that living beings may take refuge under you, and you cultivate wisdom and practice meditation to be a good guide for living creatures. But now you are staying here and we are frightened. Is this what the Tathāgata has taught you to do?” The bhikkhu said, “I observe the pure rules in accordance with the Buddha’s holy teachings and live in seclusion in the mountains in order to avoid the hubbub and excitement of social life. What is wrong with my being here that causes you to accuse me?” The woman said, “When you utter mantras the sound of your voice causes a fire burn from the outside into my dwelling and causes trouble for my kinsfolk. Will you have pity on us and not repeat mantras any more?” The bhikkhu said, “I recite mantras for self-protection, not to do harm to others. In the past when monks stayed here to practice meditation in the hope of gaining sainthood, so as to save those who were suffering in the dark path of transmigration, they were scared to death by the sight of your terriffying appearance. It was all your fault. What do you say to this?” The woman said in reply, “Heavy is my sin and shallow my wisdom. From now on I will live in seclusion and keep myself within bounds. But I also hope that you, Venerable Sir, will not repeat mantras.” So the bhikkhu practiced meditation in peace and was not harmed.

On Vipula Mountain is a stupa where the Tathāgata formerly preached the Dharma. Now many naked heretics stay at this place, practicing austerities

without negligence day and night, and from dawn to dusk they turn round to watch [the sun’s] movement.

Going east for two or three li from the north side of the south cliff, on the left side of the north gate of the mountain city, I came to a great cave in which Devadatta sat in meditation in olden times. On a flat rock not far to the east of this cave there are traces resembling bloodstains. Beside it is a stupa built at the spot where a bhikkhu who practiced meditation committed suicide and attained sainthood. This bhikkhu exerted mental and physical effort in practicing meditation in seclusion but he failed to attain sainthood after long time had passed. He blamed himself and said regretfully, “I could not attain  the perfect stage of sainthood with nothing more to learn in a timely way. What is the use of keeping this body of mine, which is really a burden to me?” So he came to this rock and cut his throat. At that very moment he realized athwartship, ascended into the air, performed miraculous transformations, produced a fire to cremate his body, and entered nirvana. This stupa was built in memory of his merits and to extol his sublime character.

On the cliff to the east of the place where the bhikkhu [committed suicide and] attained sainthood is a stone stupa at the spot where another bhikkhu practiced meditation, threw himself down the cliff, and gained sainthood. At the time of the Buddha there was once a bhikkhu who sat in the woods and mountains, practicing meditation in order to achieve sainthood. He worked hard for a long time but could not realize his wish. Day and night he never forgot to fix his mind in tranquil meditation. Knowing that the fundamental ability of the bhikkhu was about to be fully developed, the Tathāgata went to render assistance to him. He came from the Bamboo Grove to the foot of the cliff, snapped his fingers to call the bhikkhu, and stood there waiting for him. Seeing the holy monks from a distance, the bhikkhu was encouraged and jumped down the cliff with delight. As his mind was pure and he had faith in the Buddha’s words, he gained sainthood before his body reached the ground. The World-honored One told him, “You should know it isn ow the time!” The bhikkhu then ascended into the air and showed divine manifestations. In order to exalt the bhikṣu’s pure faith this stupa was built as a memorial.

Going out of the north gate of the mountain city for about one li, I reached Kalandaka Bamboo Garden, in which there is now a temple, a brick chamber built on stone bases with a door opening to the east. When the Tathāgata was living in the world he spent much time in this temple, preaching the Dharma for the edification and guidance of the common people and converting the secular folk. There is a life-size image of the Tathāgata of recent origin. At the beginning there was an eminent elder named Kalandaka, well known for his nobility and enormous wealth. He presented this great Bamboo Garden to the heretics but after he saw the Tathāgata and heard the Dharma with pure faith, he regretted that he had given his garden as a lodging for the heterodox believers and now did not have a place to house the Teacher of Human and Heavenly Beings. At that time various gods and spirits, moved by the elder’s sincerity, expelled the heretics and told them, “Elder Kalandaka wishes to build a temple for the Buddha in Bamboo Garden. You should quickly go away so as to avoid mishap and disaster.” The heretics left the garden in anger and resentment. The elder built a temple in the garden and when the 922b construction was completed he went in person to invite the Buddha, who then accepted the gift.

To the east of Kalandaka Bamboo Garden is a stupa built by King Ajāta śatru (known in Chinese as Weishengyuan, “Enemy Before Birth,” formerly abridged wrongly as Asheshi). After the Tathāgata’s nirvana the various kings shared his relic bones and King Ajātaśatru obtained his portion, for which he built this stupa with veneration to make offerings to the relics. Later, after King Aśoka had faith in the buddha-dharma, he opened this stupa and took out the relics for building more stupas. There are still some remnant relics in the stupa, which often emits a bright light.

In another stupa beside the one built by Ajātaśatru are entombed the relics of Venerable Ānanda’s half-body. When Venerable Ānanda was about to enter nirvana he left the country of Magadha and proceeded to the city of Vaiśālī. The two countries contended with each other [to keep Ānanda’s body] and were on the brink of war. Out of pity for them, Ānanda divided his body. When the king of Magadha got his portion he brought it back and built a stupa for it at this superior place. Beside it is the spot where the Tathāgata formerly walked up and down. Not far from here is a stupa built at the place where Śāriputra and Maudgalaputra stayed to observe the summer retreat during the rainy season.

Five or six li to the southwest from the Bamboo Garden and to the north of South Mountain, there is a large cave in a great bamboo grove. Mahā- kāśyapa and nine hundred and ninety-nine great arhats stayed here to collect the Tripi ṭaka after the nirvana of the Tathāgata. In front of the cave are the old foundations of a hall built by King Ajātaśatru for the great arhats who took part in collecting the Dharma piṭaka. In the beginning, Mahā kāśyapa was sitting at leisure in a mountain forest when he suddenly saw a brilliant light and the earth quaked. He said, “What does this strange phenomenon augur?” He observed with his divine eye and saw that the Buddha, the World honored One, had entered nirvana at the twin [śala] trees. He ordered his disciples to go with him to the city of Kuśinagara and on the road they met a brahman holding some celestial flowers in his hand. Kāśyapa asked him, “Where do you come from? Do you know where my great teacher is?” The brahman said, “I have just come from the city of Kuśinagara and I have seen that your great teacher has entered nirvana. Human and heavenly beings in a great assembly are making offerings to him. These flowers in my hand were obtained from them.”

Hearing these words, Kāśyapa said to his disciples, “The Sun of Wisdom has sunk and the world is enveloped in darkness. The Good Guide has abandoned us and living beings will stumble and fall.” The indolent bhikṣus, however, felt happy and said to each other gleefully, “Since the Tathāgata has entered nirvana we will be able to live an easy life. No one will reproach or restrain us if we commit any fault.” Having heard these words, Kāśyapa felt all the more sorrowful and thought about collecting the Dharma piṭaka as a guiding principle to prevent the violation of moral regulations taught by the Buddha.

He then went to the twin [śala] trees to see and worship the Buddha.

    After the demise of the King of the Dharma human and heavenly beings                       

lost their guide, and various great arhats also entered nirvana. At that time Mahākāśyapa considered that the Dharma piṭaka should be collected in obedience to the Buddha’s teachings. So he ascended Mount Sumeru, struck a big bell, and made an announcement, saying, “A Dharma event is to be conducted in the city of Rājagṛha. All those who have attained sainthood should promptly assemble!” Kāśyapa’s summons was carried by the sound of the bell to all the three-thousand great chillrooms, and, on hearing the summons, all those who had acquired supernatural powers came to the assembly. At that time Kāśyapa told the congregation, “The Tathāgata has entered nirvana and the world is now empty. We should collect the Dharma piṭaka in order to repay the Buddha’s kindness. Only a select number of people may take part in collecting the Dharma, so that they may work in peace. We should not flock into a crowd and upset this sublime task. Only superior people who possess the three kinds of knowledge and the six supernatural powers, who have heard and practiced what is not erroneous, and who are eloquent without hindrance are invited to take part in the collection, while those who have more to learn should return to their respective abodes.” A total of nine hundred and ninety-nine persons was selected. Ānanda was not included in the list, as he was still in the stage of learning. Mahākāśyapa called to him and said, “Because you have not become spiritually perfect it is fitting for you to leave the holy assembly.” [Ānanda] said, “I attended the Tathāgata for many consecutive years. Whenever there was a discussion on the Dharma I never missed it. Now I am not allowed to take part in the task of collecting the Dharma. The King of the Dharma has entered nirvana and I have lost what I relied on.” Kāśyapa told him, “Do not be vexed! It is true that you have been the Buddha’s personal attendant and heard most of his utterances, but you are not free from the delusion of passion and your bonds of habitual illusion have not yet been cut off.” Ānanda was tongue-tied and departed. He went to a solitary place, desiring to gain the perfect stage of having nothing more to learn. Although he worked hard he could not realize his ambition. Feeling tired, he went to take a nap and at the moment just before his head touched the pillow he instantly attained athwartship. He returned to the assembly hall and knocked at the door to announce his arrival. Kāśyapa inquired, “Have you cleared off all your bonds? You should be able to utilize your supernatural powers and come in without opening the door.” Accordingly, Ānanda entered through the keyhole. After paying homage to the monks he withdrew and resumed his seat. This event occurred on the first full-moon day of the summer retreat.

Then Kāśyapa made a declaration, “Please listen to me attentively: Ānanda was praised by the Tathāgata for his all-around knowledge—let him collect the Sutra piṭaka. Upāli is well known to all for his clear understanding of the monastic rules—let him collect the Vinaya piṭaka. And I, Kāśyapa, shall collect the Abhidharma piṭaka.” When the three months of the rainy season came to an end the collection of the Tripiṭaka was completed. Because Mahākāśyapa was the elder among the monks and presided over the assembly, it became known as the Assembly of the Elder.

To the northwest of the place where Mahākāśyapa collected the Tripiṭaka is

the spot where Ānanda came and sat in meditation and attained athwartship after he had been criticized by the monks and not allowed to take part in the gathering. He was permitted to join in the work after realizing sainthood.

More than twenty li to the northwest of the spot where Ānanda attained sainthood is a stupa constructed by King Aśoka at the place where the great assembly of monks made their collection of the Buddha’s teachings. Hundreds and thousands of arhats and ordinary monks, who were not admitted to the assembly headed by Mahākāśyapa, gathered here. They said among themselves, “When the Tathāgata was living in the world we all studied under one teacher. Now that the King of the Dharma has entered nirvana we have been discriminated against. In order to repay the Buddha’s kindness we should collect the Dharma piṭaka.” So the ordinary and saintly monks gathered together and sages and wise people joined the meeting. They collected the Sutra piṭaka, the Vinaya piṭaka, the Abhidharma piṭaka, the Miscellaneous piṭaka, and the Dhāraṇī piṭaka as a separate fivefold piṭaka. Because this collection was done by both ordinary and saintly monks in the assembly, it is called the Collection of the Great Congregation.

Going north for more than two hundred paces from Bamboo Temple I reached Kalandaka Pool. Formerly the Tathāgata preached the Dharma at this place. The water was clear and clean and possessed the eight virtues. After the Buddha’s nirvana the pool dried up completely. Two or three li to the northwest of Kalandaka Pool is a stupa built by King Aśoka, more than sixty feet high. Beside it is a stone pillar carved with an inscription narrating the events of stupa’s construction, which is more than fifty feet tall and has the figure of an elephant on top.

Not far to the northeast of the stone pillar is the city of Rājagṛha (known in Chinese as Wangshe, “Royal House”). The outer walls have been destroyed and there is no trace of them left; the inner walls, though ruined, still have foundations of some height. It is more than twenty li in circuit with a gate on each side.

After King Bimbisāra made the city of Kuśāgrapura his capital the registered inhabitants frequently suffered the calamity of fire. If one family was careless the neighbors on all four sides would also be involved in the disaster. The people were busily engaged in preventing fires and had no leisure to manage their properties. So they harbored a grudge about the situation and lived uneasily in their abodes. The king said, “It is due to my lack of virtue that my subjects suffer adversities. What meritorious deeds should I do to avert their misfortune?” His ministers said, “O Great King! You rule over the country with mild virtue and magnanimity, and your governance and education are brilliant and discerning. Because the fires are caused by the imprudence of the humble people, a strict law should be proclaimed to prevent future accidents. Whenever a fire occurs the one who has caused the accident should be thoroughly investigated and the chief offender should be punished by exile to a śītavana, a place in which corpses are disposed. Such places are regarded by the people as inauspicious so no one would willingly visit them. After someone has been banished to a śītavana he will be [like] nothing other than a discarded corpse. The people will be more cautious and protect themselves in order to avoid living in such a shameful spot.” The king said,

“Good! Make an announcement to notify all the inhabitants.”

Soon after the palace itself caught fire and the king said to his ministers, “I must move my lodgings.” He ordered the prince to act as regent to attend to state affairs and for the sake of upholding the impartiality of the national  923b law he made up his mind to go live [in the cemetery]. At that time, hearing that King Bimbisāra was living in a cemetery in the wilderness, the king of Vaiśālī mustered his troops and made ready to launch a surprise attack. According to information sent back by his frontier guards, a city had been built [at the cemetery], called the City of the Royal House, and the king had moved there. Government officials and common people had also moved to live in the new city. It is also said that this city was built at the time of King Ajātaśatru. When Prince Ajātaśatru ascended the throne he made this city his capital, but after King Aśoka moved the capital to Pāṭaliputra he gave Rājagṛha to the brahmans. Hence there are no ordinary inhabitants in this city, only less than a thousand brahman families.

At the southwest corner of the palace city there are two small monasteries where guest monks from different countries may make stay in the course of their travels. This was a place where the Buddha once preached the Dharma. Further to the northwest is a stupa built at the native place of Elder Jyotiṣka (known in Chinese as Xingli, “Heavenly Body,” formerly mis transcribed as Shutijia). On the left side of the road outside the south gate of the city is a stupa at the spot where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma and ordained Rāhula.

From here going north for more than thirty li, I reached Nālandā Monastery (known in Chinese as Shiwuyan, “Insatiable in Almsgiving”). I heard some old people say that in the mango grove to the south of the monastery there was a pond where a dragon named Nālandā lived, hence the name of the monastery built beside the pond. In facts, when the Tathāgata was practicing bodhisattva deeds in a former life he was a great king who founded his capital at this place. Because he had compassion for living beings and took delight in almsgiving, the people called him “Insatiable in Almsgiving” in praise of his virtue, and this monastery was named after this appellation. The land for building the monastery was originally a mango grove; five hundred merchants purchased it with ten koṭis of gold coins and presented it to the Buddha. The Buddha preached the Dharma at this place for three months and thereupon the merchants attained sainthood. Not long after the Buddha’s nirvana, Śakrāditya (known as Tiri, “Sun of Indra,” in Chinese), a former king of this country, who esteemed the One Vehicle and honored the Triple Gem, selected this propitious spot by divination and constructed the monastery here. When the construction work began the dragon’s body was pierced, and a nirgrantha (naked Jain ascetic) who was a good diviner saw this and predicted, “This is a propitious site. The monastery built on it will certainly be prosperous and become the standard for all the five parts of India. It will continue to thrive for more than a thousand years. Students of future generations in this monastery will easily gain achievements in their studies but most of them will spit blood, because the dragon has been injured.”

Śakrāditya’s son, King Buddhagupta (known as Juehu, “Buddha-protected,” in Chinese), succeeded to the throne to continue the good works and built another monastery to the south of the original one. King Tathāgatagupta (known as Rulai, “Thus-come,” in Chinese) earnestly followed the example of his predecessors and built another monastery to the east. After ascending the throne, King Bālāditya (known as Youri, “Morning Sun”) built a fourth 923c one to the northeast. After the construction work was completed a festive meeting was held to celebrate the occasion, at which both prominent and obscure persons were entertained with sincerity and holy as well as ordinary monks were invited. Monks from the five parts of India traveled long distances to attend the meeting.  Two monks arrived late, after all the participants had been seated, and they were led to the third story. Someone asked them, “When the king prepared the feast he first sent invitations to the holy and ordinary monks. Why have you two virtuous ones arrived so late, and where have you come from?” They said, “We come from China. Because our teacher is ill we served him his meal before we started the journey. But we were invited by the king and we have come to attend the meeting from a great distance.”

The inquirer was surprised to hear this and promptly made a report to the king, who, knowing that the two monks were saints, went in person to greet them. He arrived at the storied pavilion too late, however, and the two monks had already gone somewhere unknown to the others. The king’s faith was deepened and he eventually relinquished the monarchy to become a homeless monk. After he became a monk he was the lowest in rank in the community of monks and this made him unhappy and discontented. He thought, “When I was a king I used to occupy the uppermost position but now as a monk I am relegated to a humble position behind all the other monks.” He went to tell the monks how he felt, and they then called a meeting and made a rule that those who were not yet fully ordained could establish their seniority according to age, which became a tradition peculiar to this monastery.

This king’s son, Vajra (known as Jingang, “Diamond,” in Chinese), was a man of firm faith. After his succession to the throne he built a monastery to the west. Later, a king of Central India built another great monastery to the north and constructed a lofty enclosure with one gate for all the monasteries. Because the entire complex was constructed by kings of successive dynasties, the buildings were erected by the most exquisitely skilled carpenters, employing such tools as burins and curved chisels to make the architectural complex a really magnificent sight. In the great monastery built by King Śakrāditya there is an image of the Buddha. Forty monks are assigned to take their meal every day in this monastery in honor of the almsgivers’ kindness. There are several thousand monks, all of whom are brilliant scholars of high learning; those whose virtue is esteemed by their contemporaries and whose reputation is known in foreign lands number in the several hundreds. They are pure in observing the monastic regulations and faultless in conduct according to the Vinaya rules. The monks have strict restrictions and they are all chaste and spotless, so that they are looked up to as exemplars in the various countries in India. They always ask for more instructions and deliberate on the abstruse theories incessantly all day long. They admonish each other day and night and extend mutual help between old and young. Anyone who did not engage in discussion of the profound teachings of the Tripi ṭaka would be ashamed of themselves. Thus foreign scholars who wish to win fame come here to clarify the dubious points they found in their learning before they can join the ranks of the well-reputed. Some travel about citing the name of this monastery to fraudulently gain honor and consideration. Most of the people from different regions and countries who desire to enter this monastery to hold discussions are barred from entering the establishment after a preliminary interrogation by the gatekeeper. Only those who are well versed in both ancient and contemporary learning can gain admittance. The visiting students carry on debates with the resident monks but seven or eight out of ten flee in defeat. The remaining two or three learned scholars may also be deflated of their arrogance since their reputation can be damaged by questions raised later by the resident monks. Highly talented and versatile sages endowed with retentive memory and good virtue maintain the glory of the monastery

and follow in the wake of their predecessors. Dharmapāla and Candragupta, who won their fame in the scope of the bequeathed teachings of the Buddha; Guṇamati and Sthiramati, whose good repute is well known even today; Prabhāmitra, skilled in theoretical discussion; Viśeṣamitra, fluent in elevated conversation; Jñāna candra of elegant demeanor and perspicacious discernment; and Śīlabhadra of sublime virtue and profound insight—all were men of supreme quality, well known to all, whose virtuous deeds excelled those of their forerunners. They are well versed in ancient learning, each having composed more than ten widely popular treatises that are highly valued even today.

The sacred traces around the monastery are counted by the hundreds, of

which I shall cite just two or three as brief examples. Not far to the west of the monastery is a temple where the Tathāgata once stayed for three months and spoke extensively on the wonderful Dharma for various devas and people. More than a hundred paces to the south is a small stupa at the place where a bhikkhu coming from a distance saw the Buddha. Once a bhikkhu approached from a distance and met the Tathāgata and the holy monks at this place. With a mind of veneration, the bhikkhu prostrated himself [before the Tathāgata] and wished to be a universal monarch. Seeing him the Tathāgata told the assembly of monks, “This bhikkhu is very pitiful. He is a man of great bliss and deep virtue with a mind of firm faith, and he would have realized Buddhahood very soon if he had aimed at [that goal]. But he wishes only to become a universal monarch and he will surely get the reward in his future lives and be a universal monarch for as many lifetimes as [there are] atoms of dust from the place where he now prostrates down to the gold wheel beneath the earth. Because of his addiction to worldly pleasure he is far removed from the realization of sainthood.”

To the south is a standing statue of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. Sometimes it has been seen proceeding to the Buddha’s temple and circumambulating it to the right with a censer in its hand. In the stupa to the south of the statue of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva are kept hair and fingernail [relic]s of the Buddha, shaven and clipped over a three-month period. Sick people are often cured of their illnesses by circumambulating the stupa. The stupa beside the tank at the outside of the west wall of the enclosure was the place where a heretic, holding a small bird in his hand, asked the Buddha about the problem of life and death. More than fifty paces further to the southeast, inside the enclosure, is an extraordinary tree, eight or nine feet high with two branches.

The Tathāgata once chewed a piece of willow twig [to clean his teeth] and threw the used twig to the ground, where it took root and grew into this tree. Although a long time has passed the branches never increase or decrease in number. Next, to the east is a great temple more than two hundred feet in height. The Tathāgata once spoke on various wonderful Dharmas at this place for four months. More than one hundred paces further to the north is a temple in which is enshrined an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. When pure devotees come to make offerings they see it at various places, either standing beside the gate or under the eaves outside the temple, as it has no fixed position. Both monks and laypeople from different countries come to make offerings to the image. To the north of the temple of

Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva is a great temple, more than three hundred feet high, built by King Bālāditya. Its size and ornamentation and the Buddha’s image within are similar to those of the great temple at the bodhi tree. The stupa to the northeast is the place where the Tathāgata once expounded the wonderful Dharma for seven days, while to the northwest is a sitting place of the four past buddhas. To the south is Brass Temple, constructed by King Śīlāditya, though the work is unfinished. According to the drawing of the building when completed it will be one hundred feet in height. Further to the east, more than two hundred paces outside the enclosure, is a copper image of the Buddha in the standing posture, over eighty feet tall and sheltered by a pavilion as high as six stories. It was made by King Pūrṇavarman in olden times.

Two or three li north of the copper image of the Buddha made by King Pūrṇavarman is a brick temple in which is enshrined an image of Tārā Bodhisattva, tall in size with an obvious spiritual manifestation. Profuse offerings are made to the image every New Year’s Day and the kings, ministers, and wealthy people of neighboring regions, holding fragrant incense and flowers as well as precious canopies and parasols, come to join the seven-day ceremony performed amid the harmonious music of bells, stone chimes, and string and wind instruments. Inside the south gate of the enclosure is a large well. Formerly when the Buddha was living in the world a group of merchants who were suffering from heat and thirst came to this place and the World honored One pointed at the earth and said that water might be obtained there. The lord of the merchants dug into the ground with the axle of a cart and water gushed out from the depression in the earth. All those who drank the water and heard the Dharma became enlightened and attained sainthood.

Going southwest for eight or nine li from the monastery I reached the town of Kolika, in which there is a stupa built by King Aśoka. This was the birthplace of Venerable Maudgalaputra. Beside it is another stupa built at the spot where the venerable monk entered final nirvana; his relic bones were entombed in it. Maudgalaputra was born into a great brahman family and was a close friend of Śāriputra since their youth. Śāriputra was noted for his brilliant talent, while Venerable Maudgalaputra was reputed for his fine discernment. They were equals in genius and wisdom and were always together, whether traveling or staying at a place, having forged a lifelong friendship, and they vowed to take similar actions in their activities. Both of them grew disgusted with the world and renounced their homes together, serving Sañjaya as their teacher. When Śāriputra met with the arhat Aśvajit he heard the Dharma from the latter and attained sainthood. He immediately repeated what he had heard from the arhat to Venerable Maudgalaputra, who upon hearing the Dharma became enlightened and realized the first stage of sainthood. Maudgalaputra came to the place of the Buddha with his two hundred and fifty disciples. When the World-honored One saw him from a distance he pointed at the newcomer and told the assembly of monks, “That person coming from over there will become the disciple most notable for his miraculous powers.” After arriving at the Buddha’s place Maudgalaputra requested that he be admitted into the brotherhood of the Dharma. The World-honored One replied to him, “Welcome, bhikkhu! By living a pure life you will be free from the bondage of suffering.” At the sound of these words Maudgalaputra’s beard and hair fell off and his secular garments changed. He observed the disciplinary rules in a pure manner and behaved in the proper way. After seven days he became free from the bondage of rebirth, attained athwartship, and gained miraculous powers.

Three or four li to the east of the Maudgalaputra’s birthplace is a stupa at the spot where King Bimbisāra welcomed the Buddha. After the Tathāgata first realized Buddhahood he sensed that the people of Magadha longed to meet him. At King Bimbisāra’s invitation he dressed himself properly, took up his alms bowl one morning, and went to the city of Rājagṛha accompanied by a thousand bhikṣus. These bhikṣus had formerly been brahmans who wore their hair in the shape of a conch on the top of their heads but in admiration of the Dharma they had donned the dyed robes to follow the Buddha. At that time Indra transformed himself into a māṇava (a young brahman) wearing a topknot in the shape of a conch; he held a golden vase in his left hand, carried a precious staff in his right hand, and walked in the air four fingers’ [height] above the ground, leading the way for the Buddha among the congregation. King Bimbisāra of the country of Magadha, together with the brahmans, elders, and laypeople of his country, hundreds and thousands in number, came out of the city of Rājagṛha to greet the group of holy monks.

Going southeast for more than twenty li from the place where King Bimbi sāra welcomed the Buddha, I reached the town of Kālapināka, in which there is a stupa built by King Aśoka. This was the birthplace of Venerable Śāriputra. The well is still in existence and beside it is a stupa built at the spot where the venerable monk entered nirvana his relic bones are preserved in the stupa.

Venerable Śāriputra was born in a great brahman’s family. His father was a highly talented scholar of extensive knowledge, with deep insight into what was subtle and abstruse and well read in various texts. His wife once had a dream and told it to her husband, saying, “Last night I had a dream in which I saw a strange man clad in armor holding a diamond club in his hand. He demolished all the mountains, except the one by which he calmly stood.” Her husband said, “It is a good dream. You will give birth to a son who will be a learned scholar in the world and defeat all śāstra masters and refute their theories. He will be inferior to only one person and will become that person’s disciple.” In the course of her pregnancy the woman suddenly became wise and intelligent and could carry on a discussion eloquently without faltering in her speech. When Venerable Śāriputra was eight years old his name spread far to the four quarters. He was honest and guileless by nature and had a mind of compassion. He destroyed the bondage of rebirth and achieved wisdom. He was Maudgalaputra’s friend since their youth. They detested the world but did not know where to take refuge. So they went to the place of the heretic Sañjaya for spiritual practice and cultivation, but they told each other, “What we are learning here is not the ultimate truth; it cannot free us from the scope of suffering. We should each go by a [different] route to seek a brilliant teacher. Whichever of us tastes the sweet dew first must tell the other so that he may also enjoy it.”

     At that time the arhat Aśvajit, alms bowl in hand, was going to the city on                    

alms round. Seeing that he was peaceful and elegant in demeanor, Śāriputra asked him, “Who is your teacher?” [Aśvajit replied,] “The prince of the Śākya clan who, weary of the world, renounced his home and achieved full enlightenment, is my teacher.” Śāriputra said, “What Dharma did he preach? Can I hear of it?” [Aśvajit said,] “I have just started receiving instructions and I have not yet mastered the profound teachings.” Śāriputra said, “Please tell me just as much as you have heard.” Aśvajit then expounded the Dharma as was suitable for the occasion. On hearing the Dharma Śāriputra attained the first stage of sainthood and, together with his two hundred and fifty disciples, he came to the place of the Buddha. When the World-honored One saw him from a distance he pointed at him and told the assembly of monks, “[That person] will be the foremost in wisdom among all my disciples.” Śāriputra saluted the Buddha and wished to follow the buddha-dharma. The World-honored One said to him, “Welcome, bhikkhu!” Hearing these words, Śāriputra became a fully ordained monk and half a month later, when he heard the Buddha preaching the Dharma to the long-nailed brahman, he became enlightened and realized athwartship.

Later, when Ānanda heard about the time of the Buddha’s [approaching] nirvana, he spread the news to many people, who were aggrieved and saddened. Śāriputra too was deeply saddened by the news. He could not bear the idea of the Buddha entering nirvana so he asked permission of the World honored One to allow him to die first. The World-honored One told him, “You should know that this is the right time for you to do so.” [Śāriputra] then departed from his disciples and returned to his native place. His attendant śrāmaṇera informed the inhabitants in the city and the towns of Śāriputra’s intention. King Ajātaśatru and the people of his country came in a great hurry and assembled together like clouds. Śāriputra expounded the Dharma extensively for them and, after hearing the Dharma, the audience dispersed. Late in the night he concentrated his mind and entered the samādhi of complete cessation of sensation and perception. When he came out of the samādhi he passed into nirvana.

Four or five li to the southeast of the town of Kālapināka is a stupa at the place where the disciples of Venerable Śāriputra entered nirvana. It is also said that at the time of Kāśyapa Buddha the great arhat Trikoṭi (koṭi meaning “one hundred million” in Chinese) entered final nirvana at this same place.

Going to the east for more than thirty li from the stupa of Śāriputra’s disciples, I reached Indraśailaguhā Mountain (known as Dishiku, “Indra’s Cave,” in Chinese). The mountain valleys are deep and quiet, with exuberant flowers and trees. There are two prominent peaks on the mountain’s summit. On the south cliff of the west peak is a large cave, wide but not high, where formerly the Tathāgata often stayed. In those days Indra carved marks on the rock concerning forty-two dubious points about which he inquired of the Buddham, who gave him explanations. The marks are still there. The present image [in the cave] was made in imitation of the posture of the Buddha as he was on that occasion. All of those who entered the cave to worship the image was inspired with a feeling of awe and veneration. On the crag of the mountain

are sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked back and forth. On the east peak is a monastery. The local people say that at night the monks of this monastery often see lamps and candles burning brightly before the image in the cave on the east peak.

In front of the monastery on the east peak of Indraśailaguhā Mountain is a stupa named Haṃsa (“Wild Goose”). The monks of this monastery once practiced the Hinayana teachings. Because these are gradual teachings, the monks were allowed to eat the three kinds of pure meat and this habit persisted. Later, after the three kinds of pure meat had become unobtainable, a bhikkhu, while taking a walk, saw a flock of wild geese flying overhead. He said in jest, “Today the monks are running short of food for their midday meal. The Mahāsattva should know that this is the right time [to make a sacrifice]!” Before he had finished speaking one of the wild geese flew back and dropped dead on the ground in front of the monk. Seeing this incident, the bhikkhu related it to all the monks, who were sad to hear it and said among themselves, “The Tathāgata preached the Dharma according to the faculty of understanding of those in the audience, in order to guide and induce them to enlightenment. We have been stupidly following the gradual teachings. The Mahayana tenets are the right principles and we should correct our former behavior and follow the holy teachings. This wild goose is our clever guide and it came to admonish us. Its great virtue should be glorified and the event transmitted to posterity.” Thus a stupa was built in memory of its spirit of sacrifice, and the dead goose was buried under it.

Going northeast for one hundred and fifty or sixty li from Indraśailaguhā Mountain, I reached Kapotaka (“Pigeon”) Monastery where more than two hundred monks lived; they study the teachings of the Sarvāstivāda school. To the east of the monastery is a stupa built by King Aśoka. The Buddha once preached the Dharma to the monks at this place for an entire night. Meanwhile a bird catcher was catching some of the feathered tribe with a net in the wood but he failed to get any birds for a whole day. He said, “I lack good fortune and whatever I do is always adverse for me.” He came to the place of the Buddha and declared, “Today the Tathāgata is preaching the Dharma here and I am unable to catch any birds with my net. What should I do to feed my starving wife and children?” The Tathāgata told him, “Build a fire! I shall give you food.” The Tathāgata then took the form of a pigeon and burned himself to death in the fire. The bird catcher took the dead pigeon home and ate it with his wife and children. Later, he returned to the place of the Buddha, who converted him in an appropriate way. On hearing the Dharma the bird catcher repented of his misdeeds, made a fresh start in life by relinquishing his home for spiritual cultivation, and realized sainthood. Thus the monastery constructed at this place was named Pigeon Monastery.

          Two or three li to the south of Kapotaka Monastery is an isolated hill that               

is tall and precipitous, covered by splendid flowers, with luxuriant trees and clear streams. On the hill there are many beautifully constructed temples and shrines with most exquisite carvings and engravings. In the central temple an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva is enshrined; it is small in size but august and mystical in spiritual manifestation. The figure holds a lotus flower in one hand and has a small statuette on its forehead. Some people once fasted and prayed earnestly for seven days, a fortnight, or even one month here, wishing to see the bodhisattva in person. Someone who had gained spiritual influence saw [Avalokiteśvara] Bodhisattva, a majestic and stately figure with a bright radiance, come out of the image to give him comfort and advice.

In former times, the king of the country of Siṃhala in the South Sea looked in his mirror one morning but he did not see his own reflection, and instead saw the image of this bodhisattva in a wood of tāla trees on a small hill in the country of Magadha in Jambudvīpa. Deeply delighted, the king set out to seek the image. When he came to this hill he found that the image here was similar to the one he had seen in his mirror, so he built the temple and made various offerings to the image. The kings of later times followed his example and built more temples and shrines beside it; offerings of incense, flowers, and music were made incessantly.

Going southeast for more than forty li from the image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva on the isolated hill, I reached a monastery with more than fifty monks, all of whom studied the Hinayana teachings. In front of the monastery is a great stupa that revealed miraculous signs many times. Formerly the Buddha preached the Dharma to Brahmā and others at this place for seven days. Beside it are ruins where the three past buddhas sat and walked back and forth.

Going northeast for more than seventy li from the monastery I reached a big village south of the Ganges River, with a dense population of prosperous villagers. There are several deva temples, all beautifully adorned with engravings. Not far to the southeast is a great stupa at the place where the Buddha once preached the Dharma for one night.

Going east from here through mountains and forests for over one hundred li, I reached Lāvaṇīla Village. The great stupa in front of the monastery here was built by King Aśoka. The Buddha once preached the Dharma here for three months. Two or three li to the north of this place is a large lake more than thirty li in circuit with lotus flowers in four colors blooming all four seasons of the year.

Going east from here through great mountains and forests for more than two hundred li, I reached the country of Īraṇaparvata (in the domain of Central India).

End of Fascicle IX of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

Fascicle X

Seventeen Countries, fromĪraṇaparvata to Malakūṭa

  1. The Country of Īraṇaparvata                   10. The Country of Koṅgoda
  2. The Country of Campā                            11. The Country of Kaliṅga
  3. The Country of Kajaṅgala                       12. The Country of Kosala
  4. The Country of Puṇḍravardhana             13. The Country of Andhra
  5. The Country of Kāmarūpa                       14. The Country of Dhānakaṭaka
  6. The Country of Samataṭa                         15. The Country of Cola
  7. The Country of Tāmraliptī                      16. The Country of Draviḍa
  8. The Country of Karṇasuvarṇa                 17. The Country of Malakūṭa
  9. The Country of Uḍa

The country of Īraṇaparvata is more than three thousand li in circuit and its 926a capital city is more than twenty li in circuit. Agriculture is prosperous, and both flowers and fruit thrive. The climate is mild and pleasant and the people are simple and honest by social custom. There are more than ten monasteries with over four thousand monks, most of whom study the Dharma of the Hina yana Saṃmitīya school. There are more than twenty deva temples and heretics live together. Recently the king of a neighboring country deposed the ruler of this country and presented the capital city as a gift to the monks. Two monasteries have been built in this city, with less than a thousand monks living in each; they study the Hinayana teachings of the Sarvāstivāda school.

Beside the capital city and near the Ganges River is Īraṇa Mountain, enshrouded in mist and clouds, casting the sun and moon into shade. Both ancient and contemporary anchorites and holy persons come here one after another to practice meditation. Now there is a deva temple that still follows the rules handed down from past generations. The Tathāgata once also lived at this place and widely spoke on the wonderful Dharma for various devas and people. To the south of the capital city is a stupa where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma for three months. Beside the stupa are ruins where the three past buddhas sat and walked up and down.

Not far to the west of the ruins where the three buddhas walked up and down is a stupa built at the place where the bhikkhu Śrutaviṃśatikoṭi (“Hearing Two Hundred [and Twenty?] Koṭi,” formerly mistranslated as “Koṭi Ears”) was born. In the old days in this city there was an elder who was enormously

926b wealthy and powerful. In his old age a son was born to him and when someone brought him the news he gave the messenger two hundred koṭis of gold coins as a reward, so his son was named Two Hundred Koṭis on Hearing [the News]. When the child was growing up his feet never touched the earth and thus hair grew out of his soles to a length of about one foot, soft, lustrous, and golden in color. The child was dearly beloved and all kinds of toys were provided for him. From his residence up to the Snow Mountains posts were set up in a chain, with pages and servants stationed all along the way. Whenever any good medicine was needed a message was passed on by the servants to get the required material, which was then relayed back through the posts in good time. Such was the wealth of this family.

The Tathāgata, knowing that the good roots of the young man were about to sprout, instructed Maudgalaputra to convert him. But on arriving at the gate of the elder’s house he had no pretext for making an announcement. Tthe members of the elder’s family were sun-worshipers and paid homage toward the east in the morning every day. At that moment, the venerable monk, employing his supernatural powers, descended from the disk of the sun and stood before them. Assuming that [Maudgalaputra] was the sun god, the elder’s son offered him some fragrant rice. The monk took the rice back home and its fragrance permeated the city of Rājagṛha. King Bimbisāra, surprised by the strange scent, ordered a messenger to find out the cause, and it was discovered that it came from the rice brought back from the elder’s house by Maud gala putra of Bamboo Grove Temple. The king thus came to know that the elder’s son had such a marvelous foodstuff and summoned him. On receiving the king’s order, the elder considered what was the safe way for his son to go. There might be the danger of a storm if he sailed in a boat, and if he went in a cart or riding an elephant the cart might be overturned or the elephant might stumble. So the elder had a canal cut, leading from his house up to the city of Rājagṛha, which was filled with mustard seeds and a boat was placed in the canal and towed by a long rope. [In this manner] the elder’s son reached the city of Rājagṛha. He first went to pay homage to the World-honored One, who told him, “King Bimbisāra summoned you because he wished to see the hair growing from the soles of your feet. When you sit you should cross your legs to allow the king see the hair. Stretching out one’s legs toward a king would incur the death penalty according to the law of the country.” With this instruction, the elder’s son left and when the king wished to see the hair [the young man] was ushered into his presence. The young man sat down with crossed legs. The king was pleased by his proper etiquette and became deeply fond of him. On his way back home the young man went to the Buddha’s place again. The Tathāgata was preaching the Dharma for the edification of the listeners. Hearing the Dharma, the elder’s son was awakened and became a monk on the spot. He worked strenuously for spiritual cultivation in order to achieve sainthood. He walked up and down in meditation so much that his feet bled. The World-honored One told him, “Good man, when you were a layman at home did you know how to play the zither?” “Yes,” he replied. “If that is so, I shall cite it in a parable. When the strings [of a zither] are too tight the sound will not harmonize well, but if they are too loose the sound will be inharmonious and ungraceful. Only when the strings are neither too tight nor too loose can one produce melodious music. It is the same with spiritual cultivation. When you are too strenuous [in your practice] you will become fatigued and dispirited, but if you are too relaxed you will become sluggish in disposition and forget your ambition.” [The young man] accepted the Buddha’s advice and worshiped him by circumambulating him. Before long he gained sainthood.    

To the west side of the country is the Ganges River. Proceeding to the south from here, I reached a small isolated hill with lofty peaks. The Buddha once stayed here three months during the rainy season and subjugated the yakṣa Bakula. On a big rock below the cliff southeast of the hill is the trace where the Buddha once sat. It is incised into the rock about one inch deep, and is five feet two inches long and two feet one inch wide. A stupa was built there. On a rock further to the south is the trace where the Buddha placed his kuṇḍikā (bathing waterpot). The trace is about one inch deep, in the pattern of an eight-petaled flower. Not far to the southeast of the trace of the Buddha’s seat is a footprint of the yakṣa Bakula, one foot five or six inches long, seven or eight inches wide, and less than two inches deep. Behind the footprint is a stone image of the seated Buddha, six or seven feet in height. Next, not far to the west is a place where the Buddha once walked up and down. At the top of the hill is the old chamber where the yakṣa once lived. Next, to the south is a footprint of the Buddha, one foot eight inches long, more than six inches wide, and about half an inch deep. There is a stupa built over the footprint. Formerly the Tathāgata subjugated the yakṣa and bade him not to kill people to eat their flesh. [The yakṣa] respectfully accepted the Buddha’s admonition and was later reborn in heaven. West of here there are six or seven hot springs, the water of which is extremely hot. In the mountains and forests in the southern part of the country there are many wild elephants with enormous bodies.

From here going east for more than three hundred li along the southern bank of the Ganges, I reached the country of Campā (in the domain of Central India). The country of Campā is over four thousand li in circuit and its capital city, with the Ganges River flowing at its back in the north, is more than forty li in circuit. The land is low and humid and produces rich crops. The climate is moderately warm and the people are simple and honest by social custom. There are several score of monasteries, most of which are dilapidated, and the monks, numbering over two hundred, study the Hinayana teachings. There are more than twenty deva temples and the heretics live together. The city wall of the capital was built with bricks to the height of several tens of feet. The foundation of the wall is raised above the ground and defenders can repulse an enemy from high and perilous positions.

When human beings first appeared in the world at the beginning of the kalpa, they lived in the wilderness or in caves, as they did not know how to build palaces or houses. Later an apsara (female heavenly being) descended from the heavens and dwelled among humankind and, after bathing in the Ganges River with self-admiration, she became pregnant through spiritual influence and gave birth to four sons. They divided Jambudvīpa, each occupying a district, built capital cities and established towns, and drew demarcations over their territories. The city [of Campā] was the capital of one of the four sons and it was the first city ever built in Jambudvīpa.

One hundred forty or fifty li to the east of the city is a solitary islet with lofty peaks in the southern part of the Ganges. On top of a peak is a deva temple, where a deity often gives spiritual responses to prayers. Caves are excavated in the cliffs and water flows into ponds. There are flowery woods       927a and exotic trees. With its huge rocks and perilous peaks this islet is the abode of wise and benign dwellers. It is so attractive that visitors sometimes forget to go home. There are thousands of wild elephants and other fierce animals roaming about in packs in the mountains and jungles in the southern region of the country.

From here going east for more than four hundred li, I reached the country of Kajaṅgala (the local name being Kayaṅgala, in the domain of Central India). The country of Kajaṅgala is more than two thousand li in circuit. The land, irrigated by subterranean water, produces rich crops. The climate is humid and the social customs are agreeable. Brilliant talent is highly valued and learning is greatly esteemed. There are six or seven monasteries with more than three hundred monks. There are ten deva temples and the heretics live together. A few hundred years ago the royal clan died out and the country fell under the control of a neighboring state. Thus the capital city has been lying in ruins and most of the inhabitants live in villages and towns. This is why when King Śīlāditya traveled to East India, on his arrival he built a palace out of thatch for the management of state affairs, and when he left the place he set a fire to burn down the thatched house. In the southern region of the country there are many wild elephants. In the northern region, not far from the Ganges River, is a great high terrace built out of bricks and stone. The foundation of the terrace is broad and tall and is adorned with exquisite engravings. All around the terrace are carved statues of various holy persons, and the buddha images are different from the figures of heavenly beings. From here crossing the Ganges to the east and after traveling for six hundred li, I reached the country of Puṇḍravardhana (in the domain of Central India). The country of Puṇḍravardhana is more than four thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit. The numerous inhabitants are wealthy. Water tanks, guesthouses, and flowery woods are interspersed. The land is low and moist and crops are abundant. Breadfruit is plentiful but nevertheless expensive. This fruit is as large as a white gourd and is yellowish-red in color when ripe. When it is cut open one can see several tens of smaller fruits inside, each as large as a crane’s egg. When cut the fruit oozes yellowish-red juice with a sweet and delicious taste. The fruit is borne on branches, just like other kinds of fruit, and it also grows on the roots of the tree, just as fulling (Poria cocos) does. The climate is mild and pleasant and the people are fond of learning by custom. There are over twenty monasteries with more than three thousand monks, who study both the Mahayana and Hinayana teachings. Deva temples are one hundred in number and the heretics live together. There are numerous naked migrants.

More than twenty li to the west of the capital city is Vāśibhā Monastery, consisting of spacious courtyards and halls and lofty terraces and pavilions. There are more than seven hundred monks, all of whom study the Mahayana teachings. Most of the great scholars and renowned monks of East India reside here. Not far from it is a stupa built by King Aśoka. In olden times the Tathāgata once preached the Dharma at this place to heavenly and human beings for

three months and the stupa often emits a brilliant light on fast days. Beside the stupa are traces where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. Not far from here is a temple in which is enshrined an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. Its divine influence extends to all without omission and its spiritual response is evident. People come here from far and near to fast and say prayers. From here going east for more than nine hundred li, I crossed a large river and reached the country of Kāmarūpa (in the domain of East India). The country of Kāmarūpa is more than ten thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit. The land is irrigated by subterranean water and the seeds of crops are sown in the proper seasons. Breadfruit and coconut are plentiful but they are nevertheless expensive. The towns and villages are linked by rivers and lakes. The climate is mild and pleasant and the people are simple and honest by social custom. They are short in stature with dark complexions and their language differs slightly from that of Central India. They are very hot-tempered but rigorous and diligent in study. They worship gods and do not believe in the buddha-dharma. Therefore, since the rise of Buddhism up to the present day, no monastery has been built to host Buddhist monks and those who follow the pure faith do so in private. There are several hundred deva temples and several myriads of heretics.

The reigning king, the offspring of Nārāyaṇa, is a brahman by caste. He is named Bhāskaravarman (“Sun Armor”), with the title of Kumāra (“Youth”).

The royal family has occupied the territory and ruled this country from generation to generation. Bhāskaravarman is the one-thousandth monarch. He is fond of learning and his subjects follow his example. People of high talent, in admiration of the king’s righteousness, come from distant places to visit him as guests. Although he does not earnestly believe in the buddha-dharma he treats learned monks with respect. The king, having heard that a Chinese monk had come from a great distance to Nālandā Monastery in Magadha to study the profound Dharma of the Buddha, repeatedly sent messengers cordially to invite the Chinese monk but the monk did not accept the invitation. At that time, the śāstra master Śīlabhadra said to him, “If you wish to repay the kindness of the Buddha you should disseminate the right Dharma. You should go to the king; do not fear the long journey. King Kumāra professes the heretical religion by family tradition and it is good of him to invite a Buddhist monk. If he were to change his faith on account of your visit it would be a great benefit with far-reaching influence. You cherished a great mind and made a solemn vow to come to a foreign land, all by yourself and at the risk of your own life, to seek the Dharma for the salvation of all living beings. Do you now think only of your home country? Forget about gain and loss and do not care about honor or disgrace when spreading the holy teachings and enlightening those who have gone astray. Consider others’ advantage before you think of yourself, and forget about your own fame in propagating the right Dharma.” I was then obliged to go with the messengers to meet the king.

King Kumāra said, “Although I am not a person of talent, I always pay respect to those who are learned. Hearing of your fame as a person of learning and noble character, I ventured to extend an invitation to you.” I said, “I am a person of little ability and lack wisdom. It is a great honor to me that my 927c humble name has reached your ears.” King Kumāra said, “Excellent! You admired the Dharma and were fond of learning, and you regarded your body as nothing more than a floating cloud, traveling through dangerous places to a distant foreign country. This was due to the edification of your king and the result of the general mood of advocating learning in your country. Now, in the various states of India most people eulogize the Song of Triumph of the Prince of Qin in Mahācīna. I heard about this country long ago; is it your homeland?” I said, “Yes. That song praises the virtues of our monarch [when

he was the Prince of Qin].” King Kumara said, “I did not know that you were from that country. I always admired the morals and manners of your country and have looked toward the East for a long time but, as the way is blocked by mountains and rivers I have had no means by which to pay my respects.” I said, “The virtues of our great lord spread far and his benevolence extends widely. Many people of different regions with diverse customs and habits come to the imperial palace to acknowledge his suzerainty.” King Kumāra said, “Since such is the case with many countries in the world, I also wish to offer my tributary gifts. Now King Śīlāditya is going to conduct a great almsgiving convocation in the country of Kajuṅghira to achieve bliss and wisdom. All Buddhist monks, brahmans, and learned scholars from the five parts of India are invited to take part in the meeting. A messenger has come to invite me and I hope we can go together.” Thus I went with him.

In the eastern part of the country [of Kāmarūpa] there is a chain of mountains and hills without a big city. It borders on the territory of the Yi tribe in southwest [China]; the inhabitants are akin to the Man and Lao minorities. I made a detailed inquiry to the local people, who told me that a journey of about two months would take one into the southwest region of the state of Shu [in China], but that the mountains and rivers were difficult to pass, a miasmal vapor permeates the air, and poisonous snakes and noxious plants would cause drastic harm. In the southeast part of the country wild elephants trample about in herds, so the elephant-mounted troops of this country are particularly strong.

Going south from here for one thousand two hundred or three hundred li, I reached the country of Samataṭa (in the domain of East India). The country of Samataṭa is more than three thousand li in circuit and because it borders on the sea the land is low and humid. The capital city is over twenty li in circuit. Crops grow profusely and flowers and fruit are abundant. The climate is pleasant and the social customs are agreeable. The people are upright and unyielding by nature. They are short in stature with dark complexions. They are fond of learning and are diligent of their own accord. They believe in both heterodox faiths and the right religion. There are more than thirty monasteries with over two thousand monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Sthavira school. Deva temples are one hundred in number and the heretics live together. Naked nirgranthas are very numerous. Not far from the capital city is a stupa constructed by King Aśoka at the spot where the Tathāgata once preached the deep and wonderful Dharma to various human and heavenly beings for seven days. Beside it are traces where the four past buddhas sat and walked back and forth. In a monastery not far from here is a green jade image of the Buddha, eight feet high, with all the perfect features and which shows timely spiritual responses.

To the northeast, in the valleys beside the great sea, is the country of Śrīkṣetra; farther to the southeast at the edge of the great sea is the country of Kāmalaṅka; farther east is the country of Dvārapatī; farther east is the country of Īśānapura; farther east is the country of Mahācampā, which in our country is known as Linyi; and farther to the southwest is the country of Yamanadvīpa. The routes to these six countries are obstructed by mountains and rivers so I did not go into these territories, but I collected information about the peoples’ customs and habits and the demarcations of their lands. From the country of Samataṭa going west for more than nine hundred li, I reached the country of Tāmraliptī (in the domain of East India). The country of Tāmraliptī is one thousand and four or five hundred li in circuit and its capital city is over ten li in circuit. Because it is situated near the sea the land is low and moist. Crops are planted in the proper seasons and flowers and fruit are plentiful. The climate is mild and warm. The people are hot-tempered by custom and bold and courageous by nature. They believe in both heterodox religions and the correct one. There are more than ten monasteries with over one thousand monks. Deva temples are over fifty in number and heretics live together. The country borders on a bay and is a center of commerce by land and water. Rare and precious goods are collected here so the inhabitants are generally wealthy and prosperous. The stupa beside the city was built by King Aśoka. Next to it are traces where the four past buddhas sat and walked back and forth.

From here going northwest for more than seven hundred li, I reached the country of Karṇasuvarṇa (in the domain of East India). The country of Karṇasuvarṇa is four thousand four hundred or five hundred li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The inhabitants are wealthy and their families are wealthy and prosperous. The land is low and moist and crops are planted in the proper seasons. Different kinds of flowers are abundant and there is a multitude of precious fruit. The climate is mild and pleasant and the customs are honest and peaceful. The people are fond of learning and craftsmanship and they believe in heterodox religions as well as the correct one. There are more than ten monasteries with over two thousand monks, who study the Hinayana teachings of the Saṃmitīya school. Deva temples are over fifty in number and the heretics are quite numerous. In three other monasteries milk curd is not taken as food, in accordance with the teaching of Devadatta.

Beside the capital city is Raktamṛttikā (“Red Clay”) Monastery, whose spacious courtyards and houses are noteworthy, with lofty and sublime terraces and pavilions. All the talented and learned scholars and intelligent and well-informed people have assembled here in this monastery to help each other in the cultivation of morality. At first, before the buddha-dharma was professed in this country, a heretic of South India, wearing a copper belt around his waist, with a lamp on his head, and holding a staff in his hand, walked proudly into the city, beating the drum of contention and demanding a debate. Someone asked him, “Why do your head and torso look so strange?” The heretic said, 928b “Because my belly is so full of knowledge I fear it may burst at any moment! Out of pity for those who are in the darkness of ignorance I wear a lamp for their illumination.” After ten days had passed no one had accepted the challenge, and there was no suitable person even among the most talented scholars. The king said, “How is it possible that there is no brilliant scholar to be found in the whole country? It will be a deep shame upon the nation if the guest’s questions are not answered. We should seek a competent scholar among the hermits living in seclusion.” Someone said, “In the great forest there is a strange man, claiming to be a śramaṇa, who has earnestly engaged himself in study in seclusion for a long time. If he has not been practicing the right Dharma in accordance with morality, how could he live in such a manner?” Hearing this, the king went in person to invite the śramaṇa. The śramaṇa said, “I am a native of South India and in the course of my travels I have come to stay in this place. Being a person of shallow learning I fear that I am not as good as you have heard. I am honored by your invitation, however, sp I will not insistently decline it. If I am not defeated in the debate I request that you build a monastery and summon monks to glorify the buddha-dharma.”

The king said, “I have heard your words with respect and I will not forget your virtue.”

At the king’s invitation the śramaṇa went to the place of discussion, where the heretic proclaimed his theories in thirty thousand words with deep meanings expounded in a concise manner, including all the names and substances of visible and audible objects in the world. Having heard the exposition only once, the śramaṇa grasped the essence of the statements without misunderstanding and refuted them in a few hundred words. Then he proposed his own theories and the heretic, dumbfounded, was at his wits’ end and could not utter a word in reply. Frustrated, the heretic retired in shame. With deep respect for the śramaṇa, the king built this monastery and after that the buddha-dharma began to be spread in this country.

Not far from the monastery is a stupa built by King Aśoka. The Tathāgata once preached the Dharma at this spot for seven days to enlighten the audience. Beside it is a temple and there are traces where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down, as well as some more stupas, all built by King Aśoka to mark spots where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma.

Going southwest from here for more than seven hundred li, I reached the country of Uḍa (in the domain of East India). The country of Uḍa is more than seven thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The land is fertile and the crops are abundant, with all kinds of fruit that is bigger in size than that of other countries. Marvelous plants and famous flowers are so rich in variety that I cannot give a full description. The climate is temperate and the customs are tough and intrepid. The people are stalwart in stature with dark complexions. Their language and manners differ from those in Central India. They are tirelessly fond of learning and most of them believe in the buddha-dharma. There are more than a hundred monasteries with over ten thousand monks, all of whom study the Mahayana teachings. Deva temples are fifty in number and the heretics live together. There are over ten stupas built by King Aśoka at different places to mark the spots where the Tathāgata preached the Dharma.

Among the big mountains in the southwest part of the country is Pulpier Monastery. The stone stupa of this monastery shows many spiritual signs and on fast days it often emits a brilliant light. Pure believers come here from

far and near to offer garlands of flowers in competition with each other. If the handle of a canopy is placed under the dew basin or on the main structure of the stupa to resemble the shape of an inverted alms bowl, the canopy will stick to the stupa, just as a needle is attracted by a magnet. The stupa in another monastery in the mountains to the northwest of this one shows the same strange phenomenon. It is because these two stupas were built by deities and spirits that they possess such wonderful manifestations.

In the southeast part of this country is the city of Caritra (“Journey-starting”) by the seaside. Over twenty li in circuit, it is a passageway and stopping place for seagoing merchants and travelers. The city wall is strong and high and within it there are many rare valuables. Outside the city there are five monasteries standing in a row. The terraces and pavilions of the monasteries are lofty and the respected images are beautifully made. The country of Siṃhala is over twenty thousand li away to the south. When I looked into the distance on a calm night I could see the precious pearl shining on top of the buddha-tooth stupa in that country, just as if a bright torch were burning in the sky.

From this city, traveling through a great forest to the southwest for more than one thousand two hundred li, I reached the country of Koṅgoda (in the domain of East India). The country of Koṅgoda is more than one thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It borders on a coastal bay and the hills and mountains are lush and luxuriant. The land is low and moist and crops are sown in the proper seasons. The climate is temperate and the custom is brave and intrepid. The people are big and tall with dark complexions. Roughly speaking, they are polite and righteous and are not very deceitful. As far as their written language is concerned, it is the same as that of Central India, though they speak in a quite different way. They respect the heretics and do not believe in the buddha-dharma. There are over one hundred deva temples with more than ten thousand adherents. In the whole country there are several tens of small towns located close to the mountains or on the routes that lead to the sea. The city walls are strong and tall. The soldiers are valorous and, because the country is powerful and has influence over neighboring countries, they do not have a strong enemy. Being situated on the coast, the country stores many rare and valuable goods; cowries and pearls are used as money. It produces large darkish elephants that are capable of carrying heavy loads for long distances.

From here, going southwest for one thousand and four or five hundred li through a great wild jungle dense with tall trees that obscured the sun, I reached the country of Kaliṅga (in the domain of South India). The country of Kaliṅga is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The crops are sown in the proper seasons and both flowers and fruit thrive. Woods and marshes extend to several hundred li at a stretch. Iit produces darkish wild elephants that are valued by neighboring countries. The climate is hot and the people are irascible and violent by custom; most of them are rash and impetuous by nature, though they are trustworthy and faithful. They 929a speak in a quick and fluent manner with correct pronunciation, but their phraseology is quite different from that of Central India. A few of them believe in the right Dharma but the majority follow the heretics. There are more than ten monasteries with over five hundred monks who study the teachings of both the Mahayana and the Sthavira schools. There are over one hundred deva temples and the heretics are numerous; most of them are nirgranthas.

In olden times Kaliṅga was a rich and prosperous country with such a dense population that pedestrians jostled in the paths and carts collided on the highways; if all the people were to raise their arms the sleeves of their clothing would form a curtain. A risk possessing the five supernatural powers lived in the mountains in this country, practicing mental cultivation. Someone insulted him and he became enraged; his feeling of hatred caused him to lose his supernatural powers. He then cursed the people, old and young, wise and ignorant, and the country became depopulated for many years. Recently it has been gradually reinhabited but it is still sparsely populated.

Not far to the south of the capital city is a stupa more than one hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Beside it are traces where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. On the great ridge of a mountain in the north frontier of the country is a stone stupa more than a hundred feet high. This is the place where a pratyekabuddha entered nirvana at the beginning of the present kalpa, when the human life span was countless years.

From here, going northwest through mountains and forests for over a thousand eight hundred li, I reached the country of Kosala (in the domain of Central India). The country of Kosala is more than six thousand li in circuit and is surrounded by mountains and ridges; woods and marshes link with each other. The capital city is over forty li in circuit. The land is fertile and the soil productive. The towns and villages are situated within sight of each other and the inhabitants are wealthy. They are physically substantial, stout, and dark in complexion. The social custom is indomitable and fierce and the people are bold and violent by nature. They believe in both erroneous religions and the correct one; their learning and craftsmanship are outstanding. The king, a kṣatriya by caste, pays great respect to the buddha-dharma and his benevolence is deep and far-reaching. There are over one hundred monasteries with nearly ten thousand monks, all of whom study the Mahayana teachings. Deva temples amount to over seventy and the heretics live together.

Not far to the south of the city is an old monastery; beside it is a stupa built by King Aśoka. In olden times the Tathāgata, employing his great divine powers, subjugated the heretics at this place and Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva later stayed in this monastery. The reigning king of this country, named Śātavāha (“Leading Right”), respected Nāgārjuna and posted a guard at the door of his dwelling. At that time Deva Bodhisattva came from the country of Siṃhala in hopes of holding a discussion. He said to the guard, “Please announce my arrival.” The guard did so accordingly. Nāgārjuna, knowing well the name of Deva, filled a bowl with water and said to a disciple, “Take this water and show it to Deva.” On seeing the bowl of water, Deva silently dropped a needle into it. Bewildered, the disciple took the bowl back to Nāgārjuna, who asked the disciple, “What did he say?” The disciple said, “He kept silent and simply dropped a needle into the water.” Nāgārjuna said, “He is indeed a person of wisdom! He understands the deep meanings of things as cleverly as a divine being and his perception of subtle theories is second only to that of a saint. Such a virtuous person should be admitted immediately.” The disciple said, “What does this mean? Is this the wonderful eloquence of reticence?” Nāgārjuna said, “Water is something that may be either round or square, depending on the vessel that contains it, and it can carry away anything, whether clean or defiled. It flows everywhere without interruption and it is limpid but unfathomable. I showed him a bowlful of water to signify that my  all-around wisdom and he dropped a needle into the water to hint that he could get to the bottom of my knowledge. He is not an ordinary person. Usher him in quickly!”

Now Nāgārjuna was a man of austere deportment with a stern appearance, and whoever talked with him always lowered his head. Deva had heard about his ways and manners and had wished to study under his instruction for a long time. When he was about to receive Nāgārjuna’s instruction he flaunted his sublime wit at first, but when he saw the teacher he was awed by his austerity. After entering the hall he took a seat in a corner and talked on abstruse topics in refined and elegant words for an entire day. Nāgārjuna said, “You are a prominent student and your eloquence exceeds that of your predecessors. Being a feeble old man, I am happy to have met you, a brilliant scholar, to whom I may impart my knowledge, just as one pours water from one pitcher into another, and transmit the lamp [of the Dharma] without cease. The propagation of the Dharma depends on such people as you. Please come closer so that we may discuss the deep and abstruse teachings.” Hearing these words, Deva felt self-conceit and before starting the exposition of the profound theories, he first put forward an argument in a plausible and lengthy manner. When he raised his head to look at his opponent he suddenly saw [Nāgārjuna’s] awe-inspiring features, which rendered him dumbfounded and unable to speak. He stood up to apologize and begged to receive [the master’s] instructions. Nāgārjuna said, “Sit down! I shall teach you the supreme and wonderful truth, the real teachings of the King of the Dharma.”

Deva then prostrated himself before Nāgārjuna and promised to devote his life and his whole mind to him, saying, “From now on I will listen to your instructions.”

Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva was skilled in pharmacology. By taking medicated nourishment he lived to be several hundred years of age with unfading mental and physical faculties. With the aid of such miraculous potions, King Śātavāha also reached the age of several centuries. His youngest son said to his mother, “When will I be able to succeed to the throne?” The prince’s mother said, “In view of the present situation there is no fixed date. Your father, the king, is several hundred years old and many of his offspring have predeceased him. This is all due to the power of bliss of Nāgārjuna as well as his skill in the medical arts. When the bodhisattva is no more the king will certainly fall into extinction. Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva is a person of great wisdom and profound compassion. He renders service to all living beings and regards his own body as excrement. You may approach him and beg him to cut off his head. If you succeed in the attempt you will be able to fulfill your wishes.”

Under his mother’s instruction, the prince came to the monastery. The 929c guard had fled in fear so the prince had free admittance to the premises. Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva was walking up and down, reciting a eulogistic stanza, when he suddenly saw the prince. He stopped walking and asked him, “Why have you come to the monastery this evening in such a hurry, as if some urgent and fearful thing has happened?” The prince said in reply, “I had a discussion with my compassionate mother and I said that the scriptures and proverbs mention that almsgivers give alms to others for sustaining their precious lives but no one would give up his own body to someone who asked for it. My compassionate mother said, ‘It is not so. The Sugatas (“Welldeparted Ones”) of the ten directions and the tathāgatas of the three periods diligently seek the Buddha’s way from their [first] mental initiation up to their attainment of Buddhahood. They acquire forbearance by observing the disciplinary rules; they lie down to feed animals [with their bodies] or they cut their own flesh to ransom doves. King Candraprabha gave his head as alms to a brahman and King Maitrībala fed hungry yakṣas with his own blood. Such instances are too numerous to cite and examples can be found among the enlightened ones of all generations.’ Now, Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva, you are a man cherishing high ambitions. I am in need of a human head but for many years I could not find anyone who would voluntarily give his head to me. If I kill someone by force I would be deeply sinful, and to slaughter an innocent person is notoriously immoral. But you, a bodhisattva, have practiced the sacred Way in expectation of attaining Buddhahood in the future; your kindness has benefitted all sentient beings without limit. You slight your body as [nothing more than] a bit of shifting cloud and treat it with contempt as if it were a rotten log. As it is not contrary to your original vow I beseech you to grant me my request.”

Nāgārjuna said, “What you have said is true. I seek the fruition of Buddhahood and in imitation of the Buddha I can forsake anything. This body of mine is [as impermanent] as an echo or a bubble. It rotates in the four forms of birth and transmigrates in the six ways of reincarnation. I have made a great vow that I should never go against others’ wishes. But, my dear prince, there is one thing we should not do. What do you think about this? When I am dead your father will also perish. Please consider the matter and see who can save him.” Then Nāgārjuna walked around to see what could be used to take his own life. He took up a blade of dry cogon grass to cut his throat and severed his head, just as if it had been cut by a sharp sword. Seeing this sight, the prince was terrified and fled. The palace gatekeeper reported to the king and informed him of everything. The king was greatly aggrieved to hear the evil tidings that Nāgārjuna died.

More than three hundred li to the southwest of the country is Bhrāmaragiri (“Black Bee”) Mountain, which is lofty and has precipitous peaks and cliffs and because it has no slopes to form a valley it seems to be composed entirely of rock. King Śātavāha chiseled the rocky mountain to build a monastery for Nāgārjuna. At a point more than ten li away from the mountain a passageway was cut, leading up to the foot of the mountain and then continuing upward through excavation of the rocks. There are porches and verandas, lofty terraces, and storied pavilions in the monastery. The pavilions are arranged in five tiers; on each tier there are four courtyards with shrines and each shrine has a golden life-size image of the Buddha, carved with perfect workmanship. The other places are decorated with gold and jewels. Water is channeled from the high peaks of the mountain to flow down around the pavilions to link them with the corridors. Windows have been cut in the rocky walls to illuminate the chambers.

In the course of constructing this monastery King Śātavāha ran short of laborers and the treasury was exhausted when the work was not yet half done. [The king] was greatly concerned. Nāgārjuna said to him, “Why does Your Majesty seem to be heavy-hearted?” The king said, “I cherished a great mind and ventured to establish a deed of blessedness, hoping it would be everlasting up to the advent of Maitreya Buddha. But before the meritorious exploit has been completed all my resources have been expended. This is the cause of my worry; I am unable to sleep and sit up waiting for daybreak.” Nāgārjuna said, “Do not worry! A sublime deed of supreme bliss will produce endless advantages. With a great mind no worrisome problem is insoluble. Be merry and happy when you return to your palace today. On the morning of the day after tomorrow you may go out sightseeing in the countryside, and then come here to talk about the construction work.” Having received this guidance, the king worshiped Nāgārjuna by circumambulating him.

Nāgārjuna dropped mystical potions onto the big rocks and all of them turned into gold. While on the excursion the king was delighted to see the gold. He drove his carriage to the place of Nāgārjuna, to whom he said, “Today, while on a pleasure trip, I was beguiled by deities and spirits into seeing heaps of gold in the mountains and woods.” Nāgārjuna said, “The gold has come into existence not through beguilement by spirits but due to your sincere devotion. You should make use of it to accomplish your superior work.” The king then used the gold for the construction of the monastery and when the work was completed there was still surplus gold, from which four large golden images were made [and placed] on each of the five tiers. The remaining gold was used to replenish the treasury so that a thousand monks could be invited to live and carry out religious activities in the monastery. Nāgārjuna Bodhisattva collected and classified the teachings of the Buddha and the treatises composed by various bodhisattvas and stored them in the monastery. In the top tier only the buddha images and various scriptures and treatises were placed. The lowest tier was used as dormitories for the monastic servants and storerooms for keeping property and miscellaneous things, while the three middle tiers served as the monks’ lodgings. I heard some old people say that after King Śātavāha had completed the construction it was estimated that the amount of salt consumed by the workers cost nine koṭis of gold coins.

Afterward the monks had contention among themselves and they went to the king for a settlement. The monastic servants said to one another, “While the monks are quarreling with each other in contradictory words, some evil people are taking this opportunity to subvert the monastery.” So they locked the doors from the inside to repulse the monks. Since then no monks have ever lived in this monastery. When one looks at the rocky mountain from afar the path leading to the gate cannot be seen. Whenever physicians were summoned to cure sick inmates they were taken in and out blindfolded so that they would not know the way.

Going southwest from here for more than nine hundred li through a large forest, I reached the country of Andhra (in the domain of South India). The

country of Andhra is more than three thousand li in circuit and its capital city, Veṅgīpura, is over twenty li in circuit. The land is good and fertile, yielding abundant crops. The climate is warm and hot and the people are violent by custom. Their spoken language is different from that of Central India but they follow the same rules of writing. There are more than twenty monasteries with over three thousand monks. Deva temples are more than thirty in number with numerous heretics.

Not far from Veṅgīpura is a great monastery consisting of storied pavilions and multitiered terraces beautifully decorated with engravings; the images of the Buddha are most exquisitely made. In front of the monastery is a stone stupa several hundred feet high built by the arhat Ācāra (“Established Rule of Conduct”). Not far to the southwest of the monastery of the arhat Ācāra is a stupa built by King Aśoka. The Tathāgata once preached the Dharma and showed great supernatural powers at this place and converted innumerable people.

Going southwest for more than twenty li from the monastery of the arhat Ācāra I reached a solitary hill. On the peak of the hill is a stone stupa built at the place where Dignāga (“Given”) Bodhisattva composed the Hetuvidyāśāstra.

Dignāga Bodhisattva became a monk clad and donned the dyed robe after the Buddha’s demise. He was endowed with great intelligence and resolve, and his power of wisdom was firm and strong. Having pity for the helpless world, he thought of propagating the holy teachings. Considering the theories of hetuvidyā (logic) were so profound in wording and extensive in reasoning that no student could complete the study of it without great effort, he retired to a secluded place in the mountains. He fixed his mind in meditation, pondered the advantages and disadvantages of his writings, and thought about the verbosity and concision of the textual meanings. At that time, as a sound echoed in the valley and the mist and clouds changed color, the mountain god raised the bodhisattva to a height of several hundred feet and made an announcement, saying, “Formerly the Buddha, the World-honored One, who guided the people appropriately, spoke on the Hetuvidyā-śāstra with a mind of compassion, comprehending all wonderful systems of reasoning and delving into the meanings of subtle sayings. After the demise of the Tathāgata the great teachings became extinct. Now Dignāga Bodhisattva, long endowed with bliss and intelligence, and deeply understanding the gist of the sacred teachings, will today propagate the Hetuvidyā-śāstra again!” [Dignāga] Bodhisattva emitted a brilliant light that shined on those who were in darkness. At that moment, the king, seeing the light, suspected with a mind of deep respect [that the bodhisattva] had entered the diamond samādhi and asked him to realize the fruition of birth lessness. Dignāga said, “I sit in meditation to think about how to shed light on a profound text. I expect to attain is the perfect enlightenment [of Buddhahood]; I am not aiming at [merely] gaining the fruition of birth lessness [of athwartship].” The king said, “The fruition of birth lessness is appreciated and admired by all holy persons because it cuts off the desires of the three realms of the world and makes one thoroughly master the three systems of learning; this is a great event. Please realize it without delay!”

At that time Dignāga was pleased with the king’s request. When he was about to realize the sacred fruition of having nothing more to learn, Mañjuśrī

Bodhisattva knew his intention and had pity on him. Wishing to admonish

him Mañjuśrī said with a snap of his fingers, “What a pity! Why should you give up the broad mind to adopt a narrow and inferior ambition and follow the line of selfishness instead of an altruistic intention? If you wish to perform benevolent deeds for others you should widely propagate the Yogācāra bhūmi-śāstra composed by Maitreya Bodhisattva to guide younger scholars; this would be of great advantage.” Dignāga Bodhisattva respectfully accepted the instruction and worshiped [Mañjuśrī] by circumambulating him. Then he engaged himself in making a profound study to popularize the knowledge of hetuvidyā. Because he feared that the meaning was too subtle and the wording too terse for students he wrote the Hetuvidyā-śāstra to explain the principal gist and the subtle meanings in a comprehensive way for the guidance of younger students. After that he propagated the Yogā cārabhūmi-śāstra extensively. His disciples were well known by their contemporaries. Going south through forests and wilderness for more than one thousand li, I reached the country of Dhānakaṭaka (also known as Great Andhra, in the domain of South India). The country of Dhānakaṭaka is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over forty li in circuit. The soil is fertile and produces rich crops. There is much wasteland and few inhabited towns. The climate is humid and hot and the people are dark in complexion, violent by nature, and fond of learning arts. There are numerous monasteries crowded

as closely together as the scales of a fish, but most are deserted; only about ten are still in use and they have more than a thousand monks, who mostly study the teachings of the Mahāsāṃghika school. There are over a hundred deva temples with innumerable heretics.

On the hillside to the east of the capital city is Pūrvaśaila (“East Mountain”) Monastery and on the hillside to the west of the city is Avaraśaila (“West Mountain”) Monastery. These were built for the Buddha by a former king of this country, who reclaimed the river to make a path and cut the rocks to build tall pavilions with corridors and passageways in the steeps leading up to the peaks. Spirits and deities guarded these monasteries, which were frequented by saints and sages. During the millennium after the Buddha’s nirvana one thousand ordinary monks came here to spend the rainy season every year, and on the day of dissolving the summer retreat they all attained athwartship and flew away through supernatural power. At the end of the millennium ordinary and holy monks lived here together, but no monks have resided at these monasteries for the last one hundred years. The mountain gods changed themselves into the forms of jackals and wolves, or apes and monkeys, to scare off wayfarers, and that is why the monasteries became deserted of resident monks.

Not far to the south of the city is a great mountain cliff, which was the place where the śāstra master Bhāvaviveka (“Clear Discrimination”) stayed at Asura’s Palace to wait for the advent of Maitreya Bodhisattva as a buddha. The śāstra master was a person of magnanimous disposition with deep and sublime virtues. Although he was outwardly clad in the garb of the Sāṃkhya sect he inwardly glorified the theories of Nāgārjuna. When he heard that Dharmapāla Bodhisattva of the country of Magadha was spreading the teachings of the Dharma with a following of several thousand disciples, he cherished the thought of having a discussion with him and, holding his pewter staff, 931a went to see him. On arriving in the city of Pāṭaliputra he came to know that Dharmapāla Bodhisattva was at the bodhi tree. The śāstra master said to his disciple, “Go to the bodhi tree, where Dharmapāla Bodhisattva is staying, and convey my message to him: ‘The bodhisattva is preaching the bequeathed teachings of the Buddha to guide those who have gone astray. I have admired your virtue with an open mind for a long time. Owing to the nonfulfillment

of my former resolve, however, I failed to come to pay respect to you. I vowed not to see the bodhi tree until I realized Buddhahood and became a teacher of human and heavenly beings.’” Dharmapāla Bodhisattva said to the messenger, “The human world is illusory and life is ephemeral. As I practice religion with diligence and sincerity all day long I do not have time to hold a discussion.” The messenger went back and forth to convey the message but no interview was held.

The śāstra master returned to his own country and pondered quietly, “Until Maitreya Bodhisattva becomes a buddha who can solve my doubts?” Then he recited the Mahākāruṇikacitta-dhāraṇī before an image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. For three years he refrained from taking food and drank only water. Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva then appeared in a beautiful body and said to the śāstra master, “What is your aspiration?” [Bhāvaviveka replied,] “I wish to keep this body of mine so as to wait and see Maitreya Bodhisattva.” Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva said, “As human life is fragile and the world is illusory, you should cultivate superior good deeds in order to be reborn in Tuṣita Heaven, where you can speedily see and pay homage [to Maitreya].” The śāstra master said, “I shall not give up my idea, nor shall I change my mind.” The bodhisattva said, “If that is the case, you should go to the country of Dhānakaṭaka, where you can get your wish fulfilled by reciting the Vajrapāṇi-dhāraṇī at the place of the deity Vajrapāṇi on the mountain cliff to the south of the capital city.” The śāstra master then went there accordingly and recited the incantation. After three years the deity said to him, “What is your wish, for which you have worked so hard and vigorously?” The śāstra master said, “I wish to preserve this body of mine to wait and see Maitreya. It was Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva who directed me to come here. Are you the deity who will help me fulfill my desire?”

The deity then told him the secret and said to him, “Inside the cliff is Asura’s Palace and if you act in accordance with my directive the cliff will open. Once it is open you should immediately go in and you may wait there to see [Maitreya].” The śāstra master said, “If I am confined inside, how can I know when a buddha has come into the world?” Vajrapāṇi said, “I will inform you when Maitreya is born in the world.” The śāstra master did as he was instructed and devoted himself to reciting the incantation for three more years. At first he did not have any other thought but he then transmitted magical power to some mustard seeds and threw them against the cliff, which consequently opened wide. Hundreds and thousands of people witnessed the miracle and forgot to return home. Standing at the entrance of the cave, the śāstra master said to the crowd, “I have prayed for a long time, wishing to wait and see Maitreya, and now my great desire is to be fulfilled through the spiritual assistance of holy deities. You may also come into the cave together with me to see the advent of a buddha.” Saying that the cavern [was full] of venomous snakes and fearing that they might lose their lives, the people were 931b frightened and no one dared to step through the door. Only after repeated exhortation did six men follow Bhāvaviveka into the cave. The śāstra master turned back to wave farewell to the crowd and, in a composed manner, he entered the cave and the cliff closed behind him. The crowd felt sorry and repented of the faulty remarks they had made.

From here going southwest for more than one thousand li, I reached the country of Cola (in the domain of South India). The country of Cola is two thousand and four or five hundred li in circuit and its capital city is over ten li in circuit. The empty land and fields lie in waste amid desolate marshes. There are few inhabitants and bands of robbers openly run amok. The climate is mild and warm. The people are fraudulent by custom and fierce by nature; they believe in heretical religions. The monasteries are dilapidated and have very few monks. There are several tens of deva temples with many naked heretics.

Not far to the southeast of the city is a stupa built by King Aśoka. The Tathāgata once manifested great supernatural powers, preached the profound Dharma, subjugated the heretics, and converted many human and heavenly beings at this place.

Not far to the west of the city is an old monastery where Deva Bodhisattva held a discussion with an arhat. Deva had heard that the arhat Uttara (“Supreme”), who possessed the six supernatural powers and had attained the eight emancipations, lived in this monastery. He came from afar to visit this arhat. When he arrived at the monastery he asked for lodging. The arhat was content with few desires [and possessions] and had only one bed. Because he had no spare bed for Deva he gathered a heap of withered leaves and invited Deva to sit on it. The arhat then entered samādhi. When he emerged from the state of samādhi at night Deva put his doubts to him, asking for a solution, and the arhat gave explanations to solve his queries point by point. When Deva raised the seventh question in his repeated interrogations, however, the arhat was reticent and gave no reply. He went stealthily to Tuṣita Heaven through supernatural power to seek Maitreya’s advice. Maitreya gave him the relevant explanations and told him, “This was not known to you, but Deva has cultivated himself in right practice for many kalpas in the past and he will achieve Buddhahood during the present bhadrakalpa. You should revere him with deep respect.” In the time it takes to snap one’s fingers the arhat returned to his seat and continued to talk with Deva about the wonderful theories and analyze the subtle sayings. Deva said to him, “What you have said is the exposition of the holy wisdom of Maitreya Bodhisattva. Is that why you can make a full elucidation?” The arhat said, “What you have said is true.” He then arose from his seat to worship Deva with respect and praise.

Going south through jungles and wilderness for one thousand and five or six hundred li, I reached the country of Draviḍa (in the domain of South India).

The country of Draviḍa is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital

city, Kāñcīpura, is over thirty li in circuit. The soil is fertile and crops are plentiful. It abounds in flowers and fruit and yields precious substances. The climate is hot. The people are courageous and fierce by custom and are entirely trustworthy. They are noble-minded and have broad learning. ITheir written and spoken language is slightly different from that of Central India. There are more than a hundred monasteries with over ten thousand monks, all of whom study and practice the teachings of the Sthavira school. There are over eighty deva temples and most of the worshipers are naked heretics. When the Tathāgata was living in the world he visited this country on several occasions to preach the Dharma for converting the people and King Aśoka built stupas at all the holy sites.

The city of Kāñcīpura was the birthplace of Dharmapāla (“Dharma-protector”) Bodhisattva, who was the eldest son of a minister of this country. Since his childhood he had a magnanimous disposition and he was broadminded as an adult. When he was twenty years old one of the king’s daughters was betrothed to him, but on the evening a banquet was held in celebration of the marriage he felt distressed and prayed before an image of the Buddha. Moved by his sincerity, a deity carried him off to a mountain monastery several hundred li away from his home. As he sat in the buddha hall a monk opened the door and discovered the young man, suspecting that he was a thief. Upon interrogation [Dharmapāla] Bodhisattva told the monk everything and asked to become a monk. The community of monks, amazed by his career, gave him permission to satisfy his wish. Meanwhile, the king gave orders to search for him far and near, and subsequently came to know that the bodhisattva had been carried away from the world by a deity. Having been informed of this fact the king was most respectful and amazed. After he donned the dyed robe as a monk Dharmapāla studied hard and well; his reputation and character have been narrated in a previous passage.

Not far to the south of the capital city is a great monastery in which the wise and intelligent people of the country assembled. There is a stupa more than a hundred feet high built by King Aśoka. Formerly the Tathāgata preached the Dharma, subjugated heretics, and widely converted human and heavenly beings at this place. Beside it are sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down.

From here going south for more than three thousand li, I reached the country of Malakūṭa (also called the country of Kumāri, in the domain of South India). The country of Malakūṭa is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over forty li in circuit. The land has saline soil and agricultural yields are poor. Most of the precious products from the islands in the sea are collected in this country. The climate is very hot and the people are mostly dark in complexion. They are upright and indomitable in disposition and follow both the erroneous faiths and the right one. They do not uphold the learning of the arts but they are good at [business]. There are many ruined foundations of old monasteries but very few existing ones, and the monks are also few in number. There are several hundred deva temples with many heretics, most of whom are naked ascetics.

Not far to the east of the city is an old monastery whose buildings are dilapidated but the foundations are still in existence. It was constructed by Mahendra, a younger brother of King Aśoka. At the east side is a stupa whose 932a the high foundation has collapsed but the dome, which is in the shape of an inverted alms bowl, still exists. It was built by King Aśoka. The Tathāgata once preached the Dharma, showed great supernatural powers, and converted innumerable people at this place, so the stupa was built to mark the holy site. Even after such a long time has passed it is all the more divine and can answer whatever prayer is said to it.

Near the sea in the south of the country is Malaya Mountain, with its lofty cliffs and ridges and deep valleys and gullies. On the mountain there are white sandal trees and candaneva trees, which similar to white sandal trees; indeed, the two are indistinguishable. At the height of summer, if one goes to a high place to look out and sees a tree entwined by a large snake, one knows that it is a candaneva tree. This species of tree is cool by nature so snakes like to entwine themselves upon it. Having seen the tree one should shoot an arrow to mark the place and then come to cut it down after the winter solstice. The trunk of the karpūra (camphor) tree is similar to that of the pine tree but the leaves, flowers, and fruit differ from those of the pine. The freshly cut wood has no fragrance but when it is dried and split along the grain an aromatic substance, in a form like mica and the color of ice or snow, is found. This is what is known as camphor.

To the east of Malaya Mountain is Potalaka Mountain, which has perilous paths and precipitous cliffs and valleys. On top of the mountain is a lake of clear water, flowing into a large river that courses twenty times around the mountain before entering the South Sea. Beside the lake is a stone heavenly palace frequented by Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva. Those who wish to see the bodhisattva risk their lives to cross the river and climb the mountain, regardless of hardship and danger, but only a few of them reach their destination. When the inhabitants living at the foot of the mountain pray to see the bodhisattva he appears either in the form of Maheśvara or as an ash-smearing heretic to console them and answer their prayers. On the seaside northeast of the mountain is a city located on the way to the country of Siṃhala in the South Sea. I heard the local people say that from here going southeast over the sea for more than three thousand li one can reach the country of Siṃhala (known in China as the “Country of Lions,” not in the domain of India).

End of Fascicle X of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

Fascicle XI

Twenty-three Countries,from Siṃhala to Varṇu

1. The Country of Siṃhala                          13. The Country of Zhizhituo

(Though it is not a country in the domain        14. The Country of Maheśvarapura of India, I passed by it and put it here              15. The Country of Sindhu

as an appendix.)                                                16. The Country of Mūlasthānapura 2. The Country of Koṅkaṇapura                  17. The Country of Parvata

  1. The Country of Mahārāṣṭra                     18. The Country of Audumbatira
  2. The Country of Bharukacchapa               19. The Country of Laṅgala
  3. The Country of Mālava                           20. The Country of Pārsa
  4. The Country of Aṭali                                     (Though it is not a country in the domain
  5. The Country of Kiṭa                                      of India, I passed by it and put it here as
  6. The Country of Valabhi                                 an appendix. Formerly known as Persia.)
  7. The Country of Ānandapura                    21. The Country of Pātāsila
  8. The Country of Suraṭṭha                        22. The Country of Avaṇḍa
  9. The Country of Gūrjara                         23. The Country of Varṇu
  10. The Country of Ujjayanī                       Note on Siṃhala by Zeng He

The country of Siṃhala is more than seven thousand li in circuit and its 932b capital city is over forty li in circuit. The soil is fertile and the climate is warm and hot. The crops are sown and planted in the proper seasons and flowers and fruit are plentiful. The country is densely populated with wealthy families. The people are short in stature and black in complexion with a rustic and fiery disposition, but they are fond of learning, advocate virtue, and promote the performance of good deeds in order to gain bliss.

This country is a precious island producing many valuable gems; it was originally occupied by spirits and deities. The daughter of a king of South India was once betrothed to a neighboring country. When the girl was sent to get married on an auspicious day she encountered a lion on the way. when the guards deserted her and fled the girl remained in her palanquin, awaiting

certain death, but the lion king carried her away to the remote mountains and provided her with venison and fruit daily. After some years she gave birth to a son and a daughter with human bodies but of animal extraction. When the boy grew up he was so strong that he could wrestle with a fierce animal. At the age of twenty his human intelligence was developed and he said to his mother, “What am I, with an animal as my father and a human being as my mother? Since you are not of the same genus, how could you have lived with him?” His mother then told him about the past and he said, “Human beings and animals go on different ways. We should escape at once.” His mother said, “I have tried to escape but I have failed in the attempt.” Her son then followed the tracks of his lion-father over mountains and ridges to find a way to flee from the calamity. When his father was away he carried his mother and sister down to the region of human habitation. His mother said, “You two should be prudent and not say anything about our origins. If the people get wind of it they will despise us.” Then she and her children proceeded to her father’s country, but it was no longer under the rule of her family and her relatives had all gone. So she took lodging in the house of a townsman, who asked her, “Where do you come from?” She said, “I am a native of this country and have been wandering about in alien lands without a home. I have come back with my children to our homeland.” The people felt sorry for them and provided them with sustenance.

When the lion king came back and found his dwelling empty he was enraged by the loss of his family. He went out of the valley to roam about the villages and towns, roaring with fury, wreaking havoc for the people and causing harm to living creatures. When the townsfolk came out he would catch and kill them. They beat drums, blew conches, armed themselves with crossbows and spears, and traveled in groups to avoid being injured. Fearing that the situation might jeopardize his sovereignty, the king sent hunters to capture the lion, and the king himself, commanding myriads of soldiers of the four divisions of his troops, lay in ambush in the dense forests and covered the valleys. But the lion roared furiously and both men and horses fled in terror. Having failed to seize the lion the king posted a proclamation, saying that anyone who could capture the lion and rid the country of him would be handsomely rewarded in appreciation of his merit.

Hearing the king’s order, the lion’s son said to his mother, “We are suffering very much from hunger and cold. I should respond to the king’s call and perhaps I can earn something with which to sustain you.” His mother said, “No! You must not say that. Although he is an animal he is still your father. How can we do him harm simply because we are living a hard life?” The son said, “Humans and animals belong to different species so what principle of morality exists between the two? Since we have departed from him, what may we anticipate in our minds?” He put a dagger into his sleeve and went to answer the call.

At that time hundreds and thousands of men and horses were assembled but no one dared to approach the lion, who was crouching in the forest. When his son came into his presence, however,  he became tame and docile and his parental affection appeased his anger. His son then stabbed him in the abdomen with the dagger. Even then the lion remained affectionate to his son and had no feeling of resentment. His abdomen burst open and he died in pain.

The king said, “What sort of person is this who has done such a strange thing?” Enticed by promises of a reward and threatened by severe punishment, the lion’s son told the whole story in full detail. The king said, “How treacherous you are! If you can kill even your own father, what about unrelated people? A person of animal blood is hard to tame and his brutal sentiment is easily aroused. You have done a meritorious deed by ridding the people of the animal but, because you killed your father, your heart is treacherous indeed. I shall grant you a rich reward as payment for your merit but I will banish 933a you to a far-off place as punishment for your cruelty. In this way the code of the country is maintained and I do not break my promise.” Then two big ships were prepared and furnished with a large amount of food and rations. The mother was kept in this country and well looked after in reward of her merit, while her son and daughter each embarked on a different ship, drifting away with the waves. The son’s ship sailed over the sea to this precious island, where he saw plenty of pearls and gems, and so he settled down here. When some merchants later came to the island to collect gems, he killed the chief of the merchants and kept his daughter. The populace multiplied gradually as a large number of offspring were produced. They then established the system of king and subjects in superior and inferior positions. They constructed a

capital city, built up villages and towns, and occupied the territory of the country. Because their forefather was the seizer of a lion, they named the country by that title in commemoration of the merit of their origins. The daughter’s ship floated to the west of Pārsa, where she was bewitched by a spirit and gave birth to several daughters, who then formed what is now called the Women’s Country in the West. The inhabitants of the country of Siṃhala are short in stature and black in complexion with square cheeks and big foreheads. They are rustic and fiery by temperament and cruel and malignant in disposition, features inherited from the fierce animal. Therefore the people are mostly brave and stout. This is one of the traditions.

According to the Buddhist tradition, it is said that in the great iron city of this precious island there lived five hundred rākṣasīs (female demons). On the tower over the city gate two pennants were hoisted high to signify good or ill luck. When something good was going to happen the auspicious pennant fluttered in the air, and when something evil was going to occur the inauspicious one quivered. The rākṣasīs always waited for merchants coming to the precious island; they would change themselves into beautiful maidens to welcome and console the travelers with fragrant flowers and music and lure them into the iron city. After the merriment and feasting were over the merchants would be confined in an iron prison to be eventually eaten up.

At that time in Jambudvīpa there was a great merchant lord named Siṃha, whose son was named Siṃhala. As his father was getting old, Siṃhala assumed responsibility for family affairs. He led five hundred merchants to sail the seas to collect valuables and they were driven to this precious island by the wind and waves. When the rākṣasīs saw the auspicious pennant fluttering in the air they held fragrant flowers and played music to receive the guests and entice them into the iron city. The young merchant lord joined with the queen of the rākṣasīs in happiness and merry enjoyment, and each of the other merchants found a spouse for himself. After a year each of them had a son born to him. The rākṣasīs were unfaithful to their paramours and intended to cast them into the iron prison and wait for other merchants to come. Then Siṃhala had an evil dream and knew that it was an ill omen. He secretly sought a way of returning home. When he approached the iron prison he heard the sound of pitiful wailing. So he climbed up a tree and asked, “Who imprisoned you, that you are crying so sorrowfully?” The prisoners said, “Do you not know that all the women in the city are rākṣasīs? Formerly they lured us into the city to make merry with us, but just before your arrival they put us into this prison and began eating us as their food. Now most of us have been consumed by them. Before long you will suffer the same 933b calamity.” Siṃhala asked, “By what means can I escape from such a disaster?” The prisoners said, “We have heard that on the seaside there is a heavenly horse. If you say prayers with sincerity it will surely rescue you.”

Having heard this warning Siṃhala secretly told it to his merchant companions, and so they faced the seaside and prayed earnestly for help. At that time the heavenly horse came and told them, “All of you should grasp my mane firmly and do not look back. I will carry you across the sea to save you from disaster and send you home to Jambudvīpa.’’ The merchants did as they were told and gripped the mane of the horse intently. The heavenly horse rose into the air and galloped along a path of clouds to the seaside. When the rākṣasīs found that their husbands were gone they related the news to one another, wondering where they had gone. They brought their infant sons with them and flew to and fro in the air. When they learned that the merchants were about to go across the sea they called to each other to fly the long distance together. In a short time they met the company of merchants with mixed feelings of grief and joy, shedding tears of emotion. Each of them covered her face and sobbed, saying to her husband, “I am lucky to have been acquainted with you, my good man, and we lived together happily in conjugal affection for a long time. But now you are trying to go away, leaving your wife and child to live in solitude and long for you in despair. How can you be so hardhearted? I hope you will stay and return with us to the city.” The merchants would not listen to their entreaties, however. Since the rākṣasīs had failed in their tactful solicitation they resorted to coquetry to seduce them with bewitchment, and the merchants could not withstand their amorous fascination. Just at the moment they hesitated about whether to go or stay, they dropped from the air. The rākṣasīs were overjoyed and returned home with the merchants.

Siṃhala was a person of deep wisdom with no attachment in his mind, so he succeeded in crossing the great sea and was spared from the disaster. The queen of the rākṣasīs returned to the iron city empty-handed. The other rākṣasīs said to her, “Since you are devoid of wisdom and tact you should not stay here.” The queen, with her son, then flew to where Siṃhala was and tried all means of feminine charm to persuade him to return with her. Brandishing a sword, Siṃhala recited an incantation and shouted at her, “You are a rākṣasī but I am a man. We go on different ways and are not compatible. If you importune me to go with you I will kill you at once.” Knowing that she could not prevail upon him, the rākṣasī flew away to Siṃhala’s home. There she lied to his father, Siṃha, saying, “I am a princess of a certain country, and I married Siṃhala and had a son. While we were on our way returning to his home country with precious gifts our ship was overturned in a hurricane and the three of us barely escaped death. In the course of traveling over the obstacles

of mountains and rivers we suffered the hardships of cold and hunger. Because one word was uncongenial to Siṃhala, he forsook me and, using insolent language, he slandered me as a rākṣasī. It is too far away to return to my own country and if I stay here I will have to live in solitude. Because I am in such a dilemma I have come to state my case to you.” Siṃha said, “If what you have said is true, then come in and live in my house.”

Siṃhala returned shortly after the rākṣasī took up her abode and his father said to him, “How is it that you value wealth but slight your wife and son?” Siṃhala said, “She is but a rākṣasī!’’ and then told everything to his father. His clans people and relatives all came to expel her, but the rākṣasī lodged an accusation against them before the king. The king was ready to mete out punishment to Siṃhala, who said, “She is a rākṣasī full of feminine bewitchment.” Tthe king was already attracted by the beauty of the rākṣasī, and believeing that his words untrue, he said to Siṃhala, “If you insist on deserting this woman, leave her in my harem.” Siṃhala said, “I am afraid it will cause you disaster. The rākṣasīs are man-eaters!” Tthe king would not listen to Siṃhala’s advice, however, and took the rākṣasī as his wife.

In the latter half of the night she flew back to the precious island and summoned the five hundred rākṣasīs to come with her to the palace. There they repeated evil incantations and committed cruelties, eating the flesh and drinking the blood of the people and animals in the palace. Afterward they brought the remains of the corpses back to the precious island.

At dawn the following morning the ministers came to have an audience with the king but they found the palace gate tightly closed, and though they waited for a long time they heard no one speaking. So they broke the door open, entered the palace, and found it empty except for heaps of skeletons.

Startled at the sight, they looked at each other helplessly, crying and wailing in grief, not knowing the cause of the calamity. When Siṃhala told them the story the ministers realized that the king had suffered from his own actions.

The state assistants and old ministers, as well as senior officials and veteran generals, then went in search of a virtuous and talented person of sublime character to serve as king. They all esteemed Siṃhala as a person of blessedness and wisdom. They discussed the matter, saying, “The nomination of a king should not be done at random. A king should be a person of congenital blessedness and wisdom, and he should be sensitive and sagacious. Without blessedness and wisdom he cannot enjoy the throne, and without sensitivity and sagacity how can he manage state affairs? Siṃhala is someone who is endowed with such qualities. He foresaw in a dream a presage of disaster and inspired the heavenly horse [to rescue him]. Out of loyalty, he pleaded with the king against the rākṣasī, and through his cleverness he preserved his own life. It is destined by heaven that he should start a new dynasty.” Siṃhala declined the honor but his refusal was not accepted. So he agreed to hold sway according to the principle of the golden mean and, after paying due respect to the ministers, he ascended the throne. He corrected former corrupt practices and commended sages and good people. He issued an order, saying, “My former merchant companions are still in the country of the rākṣasīs. I do not know whether they are alive or dead and their fate is unknown. In order to rescue them we must reorganize our troops. It is a blessing of the country to succor those who are in trouble and sympathize with 934a those who are loyal. As for the collection of gems and valuables, this will also be to the nation’s advantage.” Then he arrayed his troops and sent them across the sea.

At that time the pennant of evil omen on the gate of the iron city quivered. The rākṣasīs, frightened by the sight, came out to receive the troops, intending to cheat and tempt them with seductive bewitchment. Knowing their fraudulence well, the king, Siṃhala, ordered his soldiers to recite incantations and to bravely undertake military action. The rākṣasīs tumbled in retreat, either escaping to hide in an islet or drowning in the great sea. The iron city was destroyed and the iron prison broken; all the merchants were released and a large quantity of pearls and gems was obtained. Common people were invited to immigrate to the precious island, where they constructed a capital city and built villages and towns. Consequently the country was established, called Siṃhala, after the name of their king. This tale of Siṃhala is a story of Śākya Tathāgata in one of his previous incarnations.

Formerly the inhabitants of the country of Siṃhala worshiped only inappropriate gods. During the first century after the Buddha’s demise, King Aśoka’s younger brother, Mahendra, relinquished the secular life of passionate desire and aimed at the fruition of sainthood; he attained the six supernatural powers and possessed the eight emancipations. He walked through the air and came to this country to propagate the right Dharma and spread the Buddha’s bequeathed teachings. Since then the people [of this country] have followed the pure faith. There are several hundred monasteries with more than twenty thousand monks who follow the teachings of both the Mahayana and Sthavira schools. More than two hundred years after the arrival of the buddha-dharma they divided into two separate sects, each specializing in its own theories. One was the Mahāvihāra sect, which refuted the Mahayana teachings and advocated Hinayana tenets. The other was the Abhayagiri sect, which studied the teachings of both yānas (vehicles) and propagated the Tripiṭaka. The monks, strict and pure in practicing the disciplinary rules, are experts in meditation and have brilliant wisdom. Many of them have model conduct and serve as teachers of good behavior.

Beside the royal palace is the Temple of the Buddha’s Tooth, several hundred feet high and decorated with pearls and rare gems. A signal post is installed on the temple, with a huge padmarāga (ruby) affixed to it, which emits a refulgent light that when viewed from a distance shines as brightly as a star, day or night. The king bathes the tooth relic three times a day with scented water and burns powdered incense as an offering, in an extremely opulent manner.

Beside the Temple of the Buddha’s Tooth is a small shrine, also decorated with various lustrous gems, inside of whicd is a golden image of the Buddha, cast after the form of a previous king of this country, with a precious gem embedded in the protuberance on the head. A thief once intended to steal the gem but the shrine was guarded at one door after another in enclosures of railings under close surveillance. So he dug an underground passage and entered the temple through the tunnel. When he attempted to take the gem, however, the image rose higher and higher. The thief could not reach the gem and with934b drew, saying with a sigh, “When the Tathāgata was practicing the bodhisattva way he cherished a great mind and made a solemn vow that out of compassion he would give everything, including his life and country, to the living beings of the four forms of birth. How can it be, then, that his image is so stingy and unwilling to part with the gem? I may well say that it does not know of the past events.” At these words, the image bent its head to allow the man to take away the gem. Having obtained the gem, the thief went to find a purchaser. People who saw it said, “This is the gem that was on the protuberance of the golden image of the Buddha made by the previous king. Where did you get this? Are you trying to sell it here?” They seized him and reported to the king. When the king asked him where he got it the thief said, “The Buddha gave it to me. I did not steal it.” Thinking that the thief was being dishonest, the king sent people to view the image and they found its head was inclined. Seeing this spiritual manifestation, the king strengthened his faith. He did not punish the man but redeemed the gem for a large ransom. It was reset on the head of the image as an adornment for the protuberance. That is why the head of the image is still bending down up to now.

Beside the royal palace there was a great kitchen, which provided food for eighteen thousand monks every day. At mealtimes the monks came with their alms bowls to receive food, and after receiving their share they returned to their respective abodes. Since the time Buddhism was first introduced into this country, the tradition of making offerings to the monks has been carried out from generation to generation up to the present age. Owing to political turmoil and the lack of an established king in the last decade or so, however, this tradition has not been maintained.

Along the seacoast of this country pearls and gems are produced. When the king came to pray to the gods they would present him with extraordinary items. Townspeople come to dig for gems up and down but the output varies according to one’s luck. They have to pay taxes on whatever amount of gems they procure. At the southeast corner of the country is Laṅkā Mountain with lofty cliffs and deep valleys that are haunted by spirits and ghosts. The Tathāgata once came here and delivered the Laṅkā-sūtra.

Sailing south of this country for several thousand li, one reaches the island of Nārikela. The islanders are short in stature, about three feet tall. Although they have human bodies their mouths are like the beaks of birds. They raise no crops and live only on coconuts.

Sailing westward from the island of Nārikela for several thousand li, one comes to a solitary islet. On the eastern cliff there is a stone image of the Buddha, over one hundred feet high, facing east in a sedentary posture, with a moonstone as the protuberance on its head. When the moonlight shines upon it water flows out from the gem, over the rocky slope down to the valley. A company of merchants was once driven by a hurricane to this solitary islet, and because the salty seawater was undrinkable they suffered thirst for a long time. It happened to be a full moon day and the water flowing down from the top of the image saved all the merchants. Thinking that they had

been saved by spirits moved by their sincerity, they stayed there for a few days. When the moon was overshadowed by the lofty cliffs no water flowed down. The chief of the merchants said, “It may not be for the sake of saving us that the water flowed down. I have heard that when a moonstone is under the shining moonlight water flows out from it. Is it possible that a moonstone is on top of the Buddha’s image?” They climbed up the cliffs to have a look and saw that the protuberance on the head of the image was made of moonstone. A man who had witnessed the event related the whole story.

Sailing to the west from the country [Siṃhala] for several thousand li, one reaches a great precious island that is not inhabited by human beings but is merely an abode of deities. On a quiet night one may see from a distance the brightly illuminated mountains and rivers. Many merchants visited this island but none of them obtained anything.

From the north of the country of Draviḍa, entering a wild jungle and passing by isolated cities and small towns where evil people caused trouble to wayfarers, I traveled more than two thousand li and arrived in the country of Koṅkaṇapura (in the domain of South India). The country of Koṅkaṇapura is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit. The land is fertile, yielding rich crops, and the climate is warm and hot. The people, who are impetuous by custom, are dark in complexion and fierce and tough in disposition, but they are fond of learning and uphold virtue and arts. There are more than a hundred monasteries with over ten thousand monks who study and practice the teachings of both the Mahayana and Hinayana schools. Deva temples number several hundred and heretics of different faiths live together.

Next to the city of the royal palace is a great monastery with over three hundred monks, all of whom are people of outstanding virtue and talent. In the monastery there is a great temple more than a hundred feet high, in which is preserved a precious crown of Prince Sarvārthasiddha, less than two feet high, adorned with precious jewels and kept in a precious chest. On each fast day it is taken out, placed on a high dais, and incense and flowers are offered to it. It sometimes emits a bright light.

In the great monastery next to the city there is a temple more than fifty feet high, in which is enshrined a statue of Maitreya Bodhisattva, over ten feet tall, carved out of sandalwood. On fast days it sometimes emits a divine light. It was made by the arhat Śrutiviṃśatikoṭi.

Not far to the north of the city is a wood of tāla (fan palm) trees more than thirty li in circuit. The leaves of this kind of tree are long, broad, and glossy, and they are used as writing paper in various countries. In the wood there is a stupa that marks the place where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. Beside it is another stupa in which the relics of the arhat Śruti viṃ śatikoṭi are preserved.

Not far to the east of the city is a stupa whose base has collapsed; the                                

remaining part is about thirty feet above the ground. I heard some old people say that it contains relics of the Tathāgata that occasionally emit a divine light on fast days. Once the Tathāgata preached the Dharma at this place and manifested supernatural powers to convert a mass of people.

Not far to the southwest of the city is a stupa more than a hundred feet high built by King Aśoka at the spot where the arhat Śrutiviṃśatikoṭi showed great supernatural powers to convert living beings. Beside it is the ruined base of a monastery constructed by the arhat.

From here going northwest and entering a great wild jungle infested with ferocious animals, harassed by cruel bandits in gangs, I journeyed for two thousand and four or five hundred li and reached the country of Mahārāṣṭra (in the domain of South India). The country of Mahārāṣṭra is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city, bordered by a large river on the west, is over thirty li in circuit. The land is fertile and yields plenty of crops. The climate is warm and hot and the people, simple and honest by custom, are tall and sturdy in stature and are proud and carefree by nature. They are grateful for kindness and take revenge for injustices. If anyone insults them they will risk their lives to avenge themselves. They extend help selflessly to those who come seeking refuge in distress. When they are about to take vengeance they notify their opponent beforehand, so that both parties can put on armor to fight a duel. On the battlefield they chase after defeated enemies but they do not kill those who have surrendered. No punishment is meted out to defeated soldiers and generals but they are made to put on women’s clothing to shame them into committing suicide. The state keeps several hundred warriors. Before each decisive battle they become intoxicated with wine, and a single one of them, leading the vanguard of the fighters, can frustrate the bellicose spirit of a host of enemies. If they injure the inhabitants the state will not punish them. The vanguard beats the drums each time they come out for an battle. Moreover, they raise several hundred violent elephants, which are also fed with wine before taking part in an engagement. The [animals] trample and stampede wildly and break down all resistance before them. Relying on the strength of these warriors and elephants, the king looks down on neighboring countries.

The king, named Pulakeśin, is a kṣatriya by caste. He is an astute man of farsighted resourcefulness who extends kindness to all and his subjects serve him with perfect loyalty. The great King Śīlāditya has invaded from the east and west and a number of countries far and near have either pledged allegiance to him or become his vassals; only the country [of Mahārāṣṭra] has refused to acknowledge his suzerainty. On several occasions Śīlāditya led the armed forces of the five parts of India and summoned heroic fighters of various countries under his personal command to invade this country but he failed to win a victory. Such is the militancy of this country but its social customs are quite different. The people are fond of learning and profess both heterodox and orthodox doctrines. There are more than a hundred monasteries with over five thousand monks who study comprehensively both the Maha yana and Hinayana teachings. Deva temples are counted by the hundreds and the heretics are quite numerous.

Within and without the great city are five stupas built by King Aśoka to mark sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. The other stone and brick stupas are too numerous to be described in detail. Not far to the south of the city is an old monastery in which is enshrined a stone

image of Avalokiteśvara Bodhisattva that possesses latent spiritual power and often answers prayers.

In the eastern part of the country there is a great mountain whose peaks join together to form a screen, with steep cliffs rising in a range. In the deep valley there is a monastery with lofty halls and spacious houses on the peaks at the back and storied pavilions and multitiered terraces standing before the cliffs, facing the gully. This monastery was built by the arhat Ācāra (known as Suoxing, “Behavior,” in Chinese), who was a native of West India. After his mother had died he observed where she had been reborn and saw that she was reborn as a girl in this country. The arhat came here with the intention of guiding and taking his mother [into the path of Buddhism] as the occasion arose. He entered the village to collect alms and came to the house where his mother had been reborn. When the girl came out to offer him food her breasts spontaneously yielded milk. Her kinsfolk thought it was inauspicious but the arhat told them the cause of the phenomenon and thereupon the girl realized the fruition of sainthood. In order to repay the kindness of his mother for giving birth to him in her previous life as a result of karmic forces, the arhat built this monastery out of gratitude for her deep virtue.

The great temple of the monastery is more than a hundred feet high; enshrined within is a stone image of the Buddha, over seventy feet tall. Above the image are suspended seven tiers of stone canopies that are neither attached nor supported, each separated from the one above it by a space of about three feet. I heard some old people say that the canopies were supported by the willpower of the arhat, or by his supernatural powers, or by the efficacy of drugs and magic. I made an actual investigation but could not find out the real cause. All around the temple, engraved on the stone walls, are carvings depicting the events of the Tathāgata when he was practicing the bodhisattva way in his previous lives, such as the good omens of his realization of sainthood and the spiritual signs of his entering nirvana, including all major and minor items carved in full detail. Outside the gate of the monastery, at the south and north and to the right and left, are stone elephants, each standing at a point. I heard some native people say that these elephants have occasionally trumpeted and caused earthquakes. Formerly Dignāga Bodhisattva spent most of his time in this monastery.

From here going west for more than one thousand li and after crossing the Narmadā River, I reached the country of Bharukacchapa (in the domain of South India). The country of Bharukacchapa is two thousand four hundred or five hundred li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The soil is saline and plants are sparse. Salt is produced by boiling seawater, and the sea provides profitable occupations. The climate is hot, with abrupt

cyclones blowing violently. The people are stingy by custom and deceitful in disposition. They are ignorant of learning and arts and believe in both heterodox and orthodox doctrines. There are over ten monasteries with more than three hundred monks, who study Mahayana and Sthavira teachings. Deva temples are more than ten in number and the heretics live together. From here going northwest for more than two thousand li, I reached the country of Mālava (i.e., the country of South Lāṭa in the domain of South India). The country of Mālava is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city, over thirty li in circuit, is situated on the southeast bank of the Mahī River. The land is fertile, producing rich crops, with luxuriant vegetation and plenty of flowers and fruit. The soil is specially good for growing winter wheat, so the inhabitants mostly eat pancakes and baked wheat flour. The people are benign by nature and are generally intelligent. They speak a refined language and are well educated. In all the five parts of India there are two countries in which learning is emphasized; one is the country of Mālava in the southwest and the other is the country of Magadha in the northeast. The people [of Magadha] prize virtue, advocate loving-kindness and, being diligent and clever, they work hard at learning. In this country [of Mālava] both heterodox and orthodox doctrines are followed and there are several hundred monasteries with more than twenty thousand monks who study the teachings of the Hinayana Saṃmitīya school. Deva temples are several hundred in number with numerous heretics, mostly ash-smearing ascetics.

It is recorded in the local history that sixty years ago the king, named Śīlāditya, was a person of brilliant wisdom and resourcefulness with broad and profound knowledge. He protected and fostered all living beings and venerated the Triple Gem. From his birth up to his old age he was never angry with anyone and never killed living beings. He was so kind that even the drinking water for elephants and horses was filtered before it was given to them, lest insects in the water would be injured. During his reign of more than fifty years, wild animals were friendly with people and in the whole country the people never killed or harmed them. Beside the royal palace was a temple built by the most skilled workmen, decorated with all kinds of adornments. Images of the seven buddhas were kept inside the temple. An unlimited assembly was held regularly every year, to which monks from the four quarters were invited to receive offerings of the four monastic requisites, or the three types of robes and the seven kinds of precious gems. This good deed has been done from generation to generation without interruption.

More than twenty li to the northwest of the great city one comes to a brahman village. Beside it is a pit, which never overflows when water flows into it from different sources, even under the excessive rains that last ten days at a stretch during the autumn and summer seasons. Beside the pit was a small stupa. I heard some old people say that this was the place where an arrogant brahman of yore fell into hell alive.

In this village there was once a brahman who was a man of erudition, the most prominent among his contemporaries, learned in both Buddhist and heretical texts. He was also an expert in the art of calendrical calculation and astronomy. As a person of lofty character, his fame spread far. The king respected him appreciatively and the people venerated him as a teacher. His disciples, who were counted in the thousands, followed his theories and admired his way of teaching. He often said, “I was born into the world to 936a transmit the teachings of the sages in order to guide ordinary people. None of the former sages or future philosophers are my equal. The people are enthusiastic in propagating the theories of Maheśvaradeva, Vāsudeva, Nārāyaṇadeva, and the World-honored Buddha, and they draw pictures of them for pious worship. But I now surpass them all in virtue and my reputation is dominant at the present time. I should be different from them all, otherwise how can I distinguish myself?” So he carved images of Maheśvaradeva, Vāsudeva, Nārāyaṇadeva, and the World-honored Buddha in red sandalwood and made a seat with four legs, which was carried wherever he went. Such was his attitude of overweening pride.

At that time in West India there was a bhikkhu called Bhadraruci (known as Xianai, “Friendly Affection,” in Chinese), a highly learned logician who had fully mastered the theories of heretical treatises. He was pure in conduct and observed the disciplinary rules in such a perfect manner that his moral influence affected others, just like the strong fragrance of flowers does. He had little desire and was quite content, never seeking material welfare. Having heard about the arrogant brahman, the bhikkhu said with a sigh, “What a pity! At present the world is devoid of a great teacher, so an ignorant man dares to commit treacherous deeds.”

[The bhikkhu] carried his pewter staff and traveled far to this country. He told his intention to the king, who, on seeing that he was dressed in a shabby robe, did not have any feeling of veneration for him. Due to his lofty ambition, however, the king was obliged to pay the monk due respect. He prepared debating seats and invited the brahman, who said with a smile, “Who is it that dares to cherish such an ambition?” He ordered his disciples to come to the debating ground, and hundreds and thousands of people assembled to listen to the argumentation. Bhadraruci, wearing his shabby robe, sat on a heap of grass spread on the ground, while the brahman sat on the seat that he carried with him. The brahman refuted the right Dharma and propagated erroneous theories. The bhikkhu argued fluently for several rounds and at last  defeated the brahman [in the debate]. The king said [to the brahman], “With your false repute you have cheated the king and beguiled the people for a long time. It is laid down in the ancient code that the party defeated in a debate should be put to death.” A piece of hot iron from a stove was made ready for the brahman to sit on. The brahman, pressed in such an awkward predicament, took refuge in Bhadraruci and pleaded for his help. The bhikkhu said to the king, “The influence of Your Majesty’s kindness spreads far and your good reputation is known to all. Please be compassionate and do not resort to cruel punishment. Pardon him for his mistakes and let him go wherever he wishes.” The king ordered the brahman to ride on a donkey to announce his defeat all around the city. Put to such shame, the brahman felt so gravely insulted that he spat blood. Hearing this, the bhikkhu went to comfort him and said, “You are learned in both Buddhist and heretical doctrines and your fame reaches far and near. Concerning the matter of glory or insult, you should know how to deal with it. What is substantial in the matter of fame?” The brahman, indignant, rebuked the bhikkhu, slandered the Mahayana teachings, and scorned the ancient saints. Before he had finished speaking his blasphemy the earth cracked open and he fell alive into the crevice. The site still remains there.

From there rounding a cape and going northwest for two thousand four hundred or five hundred li, I reached the country of Aṭali (in the domain of South 936b India). The country of Aṭali is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The inhabitants are wealthy and prosperous, having plenty of pearls and gems. Although they pursue farming, trade is the preferred calling. The soil is sandy and saline, yielding few flowers and little fruit. The country produces pepper trees, the leaves of which are like those of the pepper tree growing in the region of Shu [in China], and it also produces the xunlu (frankincense) tree, whose leaves resemble those of the birch-leaf pear. The climate is hot and windy and there are dust storms. The people are mean by nature; they value wealth and despise virtue. Their writing and spoken language, as well as their manners and laws, are generally the same as in the country of Mālava. Most of them do not believe in gaining happiness [by performing meritorious deeds]. Even those who believe in it also worship heavenly deities. There are over ten houses of worship and the heretics live together.

Going northwest from the country of Mālava on a journey of three days, I reached the country of Kiṭa (?) (in the domain of South India). The country of Kiṭa is more than three thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It has a large number of wealthy households. It has no sovereign lord and is under the jurisdiction of the country of Mālava, and its natural conditions and products are similar to those of that country. There are over ten monasteries with more than a thousand monks, who study and practice the teachings of both the Mahayana and Hinayana schools. There are scores of deva temples and numerous heretics.

From here going northward for more than one thousand li, I reached the country of Valabhi (i.e., the country of North Lāṭa, in the domain of South India). The country of Valabhi is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit. The native products, climatic conditions, social customs, and temperament of the people are similar to those of the country of Mālava. The inhabitants are prosperous, possessing enormous wealth. More than one hundred families have each accumulated property worth one hundred koṭis of coins. Many rare goods from distant places are gathered in this country. There are more than a hundred monasteries with over six thousand monks, most of whom study the Dharma of the Hinayana Saṃmitīya school. Deva temples number several hundreds and the heretics are quite numerous.

When the Tathāgata was living in the world he repeatedly visited this country, and King Aśoka erected monuments and built stupas to mark the places where the Buddha had sojourned. Sites where the three past buddhas sat, walked up and down, and preached the Dharma are located at intervals. The reigning king, called Dhruvapaṭu (known as Changrui, “Permanent Acuteness,” in Chinese), is a kṣatriya by caste and a nephew of the former King Śīlāditya of the country of Mālava and the son-in-law of the present King Śīlāditya of the country of Kanyākubja.

[Dhruvapaṭu] is a hot-tempered man of shallow intellect but he sincerely believes in the Triple Gem. Every year he convokes a great assembly for seven days to offer the best delicious food to the monks and present them with the three types of clerical robes and medicine, as well as the seven kinds of valuable gems and jewels. After presenting the gifts he redeems them with a payment of double their monetary value. He esteems virtue, honors good people, respects the Way, and emphasizes learning. He pays special reverence

to eminent monks coming from afar. Not far from the city is a great monastery built by the arhat Ācāra, where the bodhisattvas Guṇamati and Sthiramati stayed and composed treatises that are widely circulated.

From here going northwest for more than seven hundred li, I reached the country of Ānandapura (in the domain of West India). Ānandapura is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It has a large number of wealthy households. It has no sovereign lord and is under the jurisdiction of the country of Mālava; its natural products, climatic conditions, language, and laws are similar to those of that country. There are more than ten monasteries with less than a thousand monks, who study the teachings of the Hinayana Saṃmitīya school. Deva temples are counted by scores and the heretics live together.

From the country of Valabhi going westward for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Suraṭṭha (in the domain of West India). The country of Suraṭṭha is more than four thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit, with the Mahī River at its west. It has a large number of wealthy households, and it is under the jurisdiction of the country of Valabhi. The saline soil yields few flowers and little fruit. Although the cold and hot seasons alternate normally the weather is often windy. The people are stingy by custom and frivolous and impetuous by nature. They are not fond of learning and believe in both heterodox and orthodox doctrines. There are more than fifty monasteries with over three thousand monks, most of whom study Mahayana teachings and the theories of the Sthavira school. Deva temples are over a hundred in number and the heretics live together. As the country is situated on the way to the West Sea, the inhabitants procure profit from through sea trade and commerce.

Not far from the city is Ujjanta Mountain, and on top is a monastery whose cells and corridors are mostly excavated into the cliffs amid luxuriant trees and meandering streams. This was a place frequented by saints and sages and where divine ṛṣis dwelled.

Going northward from the country of Valabhi for more than one thousand eight hundred li, I reached the country of Gūrjara (in the domain of West India). The country of Gūrjara is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city, called Bhillamāla, is over thirty li in circuit. The native products and social customs are the same as those in the country of Suraṭṭha. It is densely populated and the people are wealthy and prosperous. Most serve the heretics as their teachers but a few believe in the buddha-dharma. There is one monastery with more than a hundred monks who study the teachings of the Sarvāstivāda sect of Hinayana Buddhism. There are several tens of deva temples and the heretics live together. The king, a kṣatriya by caste, is a young person of sublime wisdom and courage. He deeply believes in the buddha dharma and is lofty in character, endowed with extraordinary talent. From here going southeast for more than two thousand eight hundred li, I reached the country of Ujjayanī (in the domain of South India). The country of Ujjayanī is more than six thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over  thirty li in circuit. The natural products and social customs are the same as in the country of Suraṭṭha. It is densely populated and the people are wealthy and prosperous. There are several tens of monasteries, most of which are dilapidated; only three to five remain intact. There are over three hundred monks who study and practice the teachings of both the Mahayana and Hinayana schools. There are several tens of deva temples and the heretics all live together. The king, a brahman by caste, is well read in heterodox books and does not believe in the right Dharma. Not far from the city is a stupa built to mark the place where King Aśoka created a hellish prison. From here going northeast for more than one thousand li, I reached the country of Zhizhituo (in the domain of South India). The country of Zhizhituo is more than four thousand li in circuit and its capital city is fifteen or sixteen li in circuit. The soil is fertile and crops are abundant. It is good for growing pulse and wheat and there are plenty of flowers and fruit. The climate is pleasant and the people are of a benign and affable disposition. Most of them believe in heterodoxy and a few respect the buddha-dharma. There are several tens of monasteries but few monks. Deva temples are over ten in number and there are more than a thousand heretics (priests). The king is a brahman by caste, earnestly believes in the Triple Gem, and esteems people of virtue. Many learned scholars of various places assemble in this country. From here going northward for more than nine hundred li, I reached the country of Maheśvarapura (in the domain of Central India). The country of Maheśvara pura is more than three thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit. The natural products and social customs are similar to those of the country of Ujjayanī. The people venerate heretics and do not believe in the buddha-dharma. There are several tens of deva temples, mostly belonging to the ash-smearing ascetics. The king is a brahman by caste and does not respect the buddha-dharma very much.

From there I returned to the country of Gūrjara and going northward again, through wilderness and dangerous desert for more than one thousand and nine hundred li and crossing the great Sindhu River, I reached the country of Sindhu (in the domain of West India). The country of Sindhu is more than seven thousand li in circuit and its capital city, Vichavapura, is over thirty li in circuit. The land is good for growing cereals and millet and wheat are abundant. It produces gold, silver, and brass and it is suitable for rearing cattle, sheep, camels, mules, and other domestic animals. The camels are small in size and have only one hump. It produces plenty of red salt, the color of red rock, while its white and black salt and white rock salt are used as medicine by people in distant foreign countries. The people are violent but upright by nature and are pugnacious and abusive. In learning they do not aim at becoming erudite but they deeply believe in the buddha-dharma. There are several hundred monasteries with more than ten thousand monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya school of Hinayana Buddhism. They are mostly indolent people with a corrupt character. The good and assid- 937b uous monks live apart in quiet and secluded mountains and forests, and many of them, working hard day and night, realize sainthood. There are more than thirty deva temples and the heretics live together. The king, a śūdra by caste, is a man of simplicity and honesty and he respects the buddha-dharma. Formerly the Buddha visited this country several times and therefore King Aśoka built several tens of stupas at the holy sites. The great arhat Upagupta visited this country many times to preach the Dharma to guide the people. At all the places where he sojourned monasteries, stupas, or both have been erected as monuments to mark the sites, of which I had scant information.

In a district of slopes and marshes extending to more than a thousand li beside the Sindhu River there live several hundred, nearly a thousand, families of ferocious people who made slaughtering their occupation and sustain themselves by rearing cattle, without any other means of living. All the people, male or female and regardless of nobility or lowliness, shave off their hair and beards and dress in religious robes. They thus give the appearance of being bhikṣus (and bhikṣunīs) while engaging in secular affairs. They persistently hold Hinayana views and slander Mahayana teachings. I heard some elderly people say that in the old days the people of this place were cruel and evil by nature. An arhat took pity on them in their degenerate state and came flying through the air in order to edify them. He manifested great supernatural powers and performed wonders to induce their faith. Through his gradual teaching the people respected him with delight and were willing to accept his instructions. Knowing that the people had become obedient, the arhat told them to take refuge in the Triple Gem, quenched their ferocity, and stopped them from killing living beings. They shaved off their hair, put on religious robes, and respectfully practiced the instructions of the Dharma. After a long time had passed and there were changes in the world, however, they became imperfect in doing good deeds and returned to their evil habits.

Although they dress in religious robes they do not observe the disciplinary rules, nor practice good deeds. The custom [of wearing robes] has been handed down from generation to generation and has become a prevailing tradition.

From there going east for more than nine hundred li, I crossed the Sindhu River, reached the east bank, and arrived in the country of Mūlasthānapura (in the domain of West India). The country of Mūlasthānapura is more than four thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over thirty li in circuit. The country is densely populated with wealthy families and is subject to the country of Ṭakka. The soil is fertile and the climate is mild and good for agriculture. The people are honest and upright; they like learning and esteem virtue. Most of them worship heavenly deities but a few believe in the buddha-dharma. There are more than ten monasteries, mostly dilapidated, with few monks who do not specialize in the theories of any particular school. There are eight deva temples and the heretics live together.

There is a beautifully decorated Temple of the Sun God. The image of the god is made of gold and adorned with precious ornaments. It has spiritual perception and the power of penetration and its divine merits protect all secretly. Female musicians play music incessantly and candles are kept burning day and night. Incense and flowers are always offered without interruption. The kings and grand people of all the five parts of India come here to give alms of jewels and valuables and they have established rest houses to distribute food, drink, and medicine for the relief of the poor and sick. There are always a thousand people coming from different countries to say prayers. Around the temple there are ponds and flowery woods that provide a very delightful resort.

From there going northeast for more than seven hundred li, I reached the country of Parvata (in the domain of North India). The country of Parvata is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The country is densely populated and is subject to the country of Ṭakka. It yields plenty of dry rice and the soil is good for growing pulse and wheat. The climate is mild and pleasant and the people are honest and upright by custom, though hot-tempered by nature; they use vulgar words in their speech. Their learning is deep and broad and they believe in both heterodoxy and orthodoxy. There are more than ten monasteries with over a thousand monks who study and practice the teachings of both the Mahayana and Hinayana schools. There are four stupas built by King Aśoka. Deva temples number twenty and the heretics live together. Near the city there used to be a great monastery with over a hundred monks, all of whom studied Mahayana teachings. This is the place where the śāstra master Jinaputra (meaning “Son of Victory”) composed the Commentary on the Yogācārabhūmi-śāstra, and it is also where the śāstra masters Bhadraruci and Guṇaprabha became monks. This great monastery was reduced to ruins by fire from heaven.

Going southwest from the country of Sindhu for one thousand and five or six hundred li, I reached the country of Audumbatira (in the domain of West India). Audum batira is more than five thousand li in circuit and its capital city, Kaccheśvara, is over thirty li in circuit. It is situated in the remote western region near the Sindhu River, close to the great sea. The houses are beautifully decorated and there are many jewels and gems. In recent years the country has had no sovereign king and is subordinate to the country of Sindhu. The land is low and moist and the soil is saline; wild weeds grow profusely and few fields are cultivated. Although the country produces all kinds of cereals, pulse and wheat are particularly abundant. The climate is somewhat cold and hurricanes blow violently. Cattle, sheep, camels, mules, and the like are reared. The people are hot-tempered by nature and do not like learning. Their language is slightly different from that of Central India and they are by custom simple and honest and respect the Triple Gem. There are more than eighty monasteries with over five thousand monks, most of whom study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya school of Hinayana Buddhism. There are ten deva temples, mostly inhabited by ash-smearing ascetics. In the city is a temple of Maheśvara adorned with engravings and the image of the god has spiritual influence. It is frequented by ash-smearing ascetics. In the old days the Tathāgata visited this country on several occasions to preach the Dharma to convert the people, guiding ordinary people and benefiting the secular inhabitants. Thus King Aśoka built six stupas at the holy sites.

From here going west for less than two thousand li, I reached the country of Laṅgala (in the domain of West India). The country of Laṅgala is several thousand li on each of the four sides and its capital city, Sthūlīśvara (?), is thirty li in circuit. The land is fertile and crops are abundant. The climate 938a and social customs are the same as in the country of Audumbatira. It is a populous country and rich in precious jewels and gems. Situated at the seaside, it is on the way to the Women’s Country. It has no supreme ruler; in each valley the people have their own leaders who are independent of one another, though all are subject to the country of Pārsa. Their written language is generally the same as that of India but their spoken language differs slightly. The people believe in both heterodoxy and orthodoxy. There are over one hundred monasteries with more than six thousand monks who study and practice both Mahayana and Hinayana teachings. There are several hundred deva temples and ash-smearing heretics are extremely numerous. Inside the city is a magnificent and beautifully decorated temple of Maheśvara, which is held in great esteem by the ash-smearing heretics.

Going northwest from there one would reach the country of Pārsa. (Though it is not in the domain of India I passed by it and put it here as an appendix. It was formerly known as Bosi in abbreviation.) The country of Pārsa is several myriad li in circuit and its capital city, Surasthāna, is over forty li in circuit. Since the territory is vast the climate differs at various locales; generally speaking, it is warm. Water is channeled to irrigate the fields and the people are wealthy and prosperous. The country produces gold, silver, brass, quartz, crystal, and other precious and unusual substances. Large pieces of brocade, fine ramie cloth, woolen carpets, and the like are exquisitely woven. There are many good horses and camels. Large silver coins are used for currency. The people are hot-tempered by nature and have no etiquette by custom. Their spoken and written languages differ from those of other countries. There are no scholars or artists but there are many skillful artisans whose products are much valued by the people of neighboring countries. They practice mixed marriage and corpses are mostly discarded. They are tall and stout in stature and crop their hair short to expose the top of the head. They wear clothes made of fur, ramie, and colored cotton. A household tax is levied at the rate of four silver coins per head. There are numerous deva temples, highly honored by the heretics of Dinapati (“Lord of the Day,” i.e., the sun). There are two or three monasteries with a few hundred monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Sarvāstivāda school of Hinayana Buddhism. The alms bowl of Śākya Buddha is kept in the palace of the country. In the eastern part of the country is the city of Ormes; its inner city is not wide while the outer city is more than sixty li in circuit. The inhabitants are numerous and wealthy. The northeast region borders on the country of Hrum, whose topography and social customs are the same as in Pārsa, but the features of the people and their language differ. It is also a wealthy country, possessing plenty of jewels and gems.

Southwest of the country of Hrum is the Women’s Country, which is an island. There are only female inhabitants there, without a single man. It produces various valuable goods and is a dependency of Hrum. The king of Hrum sends men to mate with the female inhabitants every year, as it is their custom not to bring up any male baby born to them.

Going northward from the country of Audumbatira for more than seven hundred li, I reached the country of Pātāsila (in the domain of West India). The country of Pātāsila is more than three thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It is well populated but without a sovereign lord and is subject to the country of Sindhu. The land is sandy and salty and chilly winds blow hard. There is plenty of pulse and wheat but few flowers or fruit. The people are rustic and hot-tempered by nature and their language differs from that of Central India. They are not fond of learning the arts but they have pure faith. There are more than fifty monasteries with over three thousand monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya school of Hinayana Buddhism. Deva temples number more than twenty, all belonging to the ash-smearing heretics. In a large wood fifteen or sixteen li north of the city there is a stupa, several hundred feet high, built by King Aśoka. It contains a relic bone that occasionally emits a bright light. This is the place where the Tathāgata, as a risk in a previous life, was killed by a king. Not far to the east from here is an old monastery built by the great arhat Mahākātyāyana. Beside it stupas were built to mark sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down.

From here going northeast for more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Avaṇḍa (in the domain of West India). The country of Avaṇḍa is two thousand and four or five hundred li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It has no sovereign lord and is subject to the country of Sindhu. The soil is good for growing crops and pulse and wheat are particularly abundant. There are not many flowers or much fruit and vegetation is sparse. The climate is windy and cold and the people are rustic and violent by nature. Speaking a simple and plain language, they do not uphold learning but they fix their minds on and have pure faith in the Triple Gem. There are over twenty monasteries with more than two thousand monks, most of whom study the teachings of the Saṃmitīya school of Hinayana Buddhism. There are five deva temples belonging to the ash-smearing heretics.

In a great bamboo grove not far away from the city are the ruins of an old monastery. This is the place where in olden days the Tathāgata gave permission to the bhikṣus to wear jifuxi (boots). Beside the ruins is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Although the foundation has collapsed the remaining structure is still over a hundred feet high. In a temple beside the stupa a standing image of the Buddha made out of blue stone is enshrined. On fast days it often emits a divine light. Further away to the south for over eight hundred paces, in a wood, is a stupa built by King Aśoka. Once the Tathāgata stayed at this place and because it was a cold night, he covered himself with all three of his robes, one over the other. The following morning he permitted the bhikṣus to wear double robes. In this wood is a site where the Buddha walked up and down. There are also other stupas built close to each other to mark the places where the four past buddhas sat and walked back and forth. Hair and nail relics of the Tathāgata are preserved in one of the stupas and they often emit a bright light on fast days.

From here going northeast for more than nine hundred li, I reached the country

of Varṇu (in the domain of West India). The country of Varṇu is more than four thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It is densely populated and is subject to the country of Kāpiśī. The land is mountainous with many woods and crops are sown in season. The climate is somewhat cold and the people are rustic and violent by nature and vulgar and mean in disposition. Their language is rather similar to that of Central India. They believe in both heterodoxy and orthodoxy and are not fond of learning. There are several tens of monasteries, mostly dilapidated, with more than three hundred monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings. There are five deva temples with many ash-smearing heretics. Not far away to the south of the city there is an old monastery. In the past the Tathāgata preached the Dharma at this place to teach the people for their welfare and enlightenment. Beside it are sites where the four past buddhas sat and walked up and down. I heard some local people say that the west side of the country borders the country of Kaikānān, which is located among large mountains in which there are chieftains in the different valleys but no sovereign ruler. It has many sheep and horses; the good horses are particularly big as they are of a rare breed that is greatly valued by neighboring regions.

From here again going northwest, crossing great mountains and wide rivers and passing small towns on a journey of more than two thousand li, I came out of the domain of India and reached the country of Jāguḍa (also known as the country of Caoli).

End of Fascicle XI of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

Note on Siṃhala

by Zeng He

The country of Siṃhala, known as the Land of Lions in olden times, and also called the Country of No Sorrow, is south of India. It is also called the Precious Island because it produces many rare gems. Śākyamuni Buddha once transformed himself into a man named Siṃhala and he was made king by the people of the country, as he was a person who possessed all virtues. Therefore it was also called the country of Siṃhala. With his great supernatural powers he destroyed the great iron city, annihilated the rākṣasīs, and rescued the victims who were in peril. He then constructed a capital city and built towns to convert and guide the local people. After having propagated the right teaching he passed away, leaving a tooth behind in this country. It is adamantine and will last for many kalpas without being damaged. It emits a precious light like that of a brilliant star, or like the moon shining in the night or the sun brightening the daytime. Whenever a prayer is said to [the tooth relic] it responds as swiftly as an echo. In times of natural disaster an earnest prayer will bring instant divine auspiciousness. What is now called the Mountain of Ceylon was the country of Siṃhala in ancient times. Beside the royal palace is a temple for the Buddha’s tooth relic, decorated with various gems and shining with great brilliance. It has been worshiped from generation to generation without negligence.

is a native of Soḷī. He is a brutal and tyrannical ruler who worships heretics, The reigning king A lie ku nai er (Bhuvanaikabāhu V, r. 1372–1408 C.E.) does not venerate the Triple Gem, has no feeling of pity for his people, and 939a blasphemes the Buddha’s tooth relic.

the Emperor dispatched the eunuch Zheng He as an imperial envoy to sendIn the third year of the Yongle period (1405 C.E.) of the great Ming dynasty, incense and flowers to that country and make offerings [to the tooth relic]. Zheng He exhorted King Bhuvanaikabāhu V to respect Buddhism and stay away from heretics. The king was enraged and intended to kill the envoy. Having got wind of the intrigue, Zheng He fled. Later he was again sent to bestow gifts on various foreign countries and visited the king of the Mountain of Ceylon, who was all the more arrogant and disrespectful and attempted to kill him. The king mobilized fifty thousand troops to fell trees to obstruct.

the road and sent a contingent to ransack the seagoing vessels. At that point a subordinate official leaked the secret and Zheng He and his men, having realized the situation, immediately tried to return to their ships. The road had been cut off so they could only secretly send some men out, but the captors of the ships would not allow them to board. Zheng He, commanding three thousand soldiers, made an assault by a shortcut at night and took possession of the royal city.

The native troops that had captured the ships joined forces with the native soldiers on land and launched a counterattack from all four sides. They besieged the royal city with a tight encirclement and fought for six days. Zheng He and his men captured the king and opened the city gate, and, after cutting down trees to make a passage, they retreated while fighting. Going for more than twenty li, they reached the ships in the evening. They brought the Buddha’s tooth relic on board with due ceremony. It emitted a brilliant light in a most unusual manner, as mentioned above, and a peal of thunder rumbled with such a loud crash that people saw the lightning from a great distance and hid themselves. The ships sailed on the great sea without encountering a windstorm [and they were as safe] as if they were walking on dry land. Ferocious dragons and mischievous fishes emerged before the ships but caused no harm. All the people on board the ships were safe and happy.

On the ninth day of the seventh month in the ninth year of Yongle (1411 C.E.) they returned to the capital. The Emperor ordered that a precious diamond seat be prepared in the imperial city for the tooth relic, in order to make offerings to it for the benefit of living beings and the welfare of the people, so that they might perform countless meritorious deeds.

 

Translator’s Introduction

Fascicle XII

Twenty-two Countries, from Jāguḍa to Gostana

  1. The Country of Jāguḍa                            14. The Country of Kuraṇa
  2. The Country of Vṛjiṣṭhāna                       15. The Country of Dharmasthiti
  3. The Country of Andarāb                          16. The Country of Śikni
  4. The Country of Khost                              17. The Country of Shangmi
  5. The Country of Huoh                              18. The Country of Kabhanda
  6. The Country of Mungān                          19. The Country of Wusha
  7. The Country of Alini                               20. The Country of Kasha
  8. The Country of Rāhu                               21. The Country of Cukuka
  9. The Country of Krisma                           22. The Country of Gostana
  10. The Country of Pārghar                           23Eulogy of the Buddha
  11. The Country of Himatala                        24Eulogy of Xuanzang
  12. The Country of Badakshān                     25Note by Bianji
  13. The Country of Invakan

The country of Jāguḍa is more than seven thousand li in circuit and its capital city, called Hexina (Ghazni), is over thirty li in circuit; the capital is sometimes located in the city of Hesaluo (Guzar), which is also over thirty li in circuit. Both cities are strongly fortified in invulnerable positions. The mountains and valleys are rich in natural resources and the cultivated farmlands, divided by ridges, are high and dry. Crops are sown in proper seasons. Winter wheat is abundant and vegetation is luxuriant with profuse flowers and fruit. The soil is good for growing aromatic turmeric and it produces the hiṅgu herb (Ferula asafoetida), which grows in Rama-Indus Valley. In the city of Hesaluo there are gushing springs and the water flows to all sides; the people make use of it for irrigation. The climate is severely cold with much frost and snow. The people are frivolous and impetuous by nature and deceitful in disposition. They are fond of learning and are skillful in many kinds of crafts. They are clever, if lacking in discernment, and can recite a work of several myriads of words in a day. Their written and spoken language differ from those of other countries. They produce more empty talk than real action. Although they worship various gods they respect the Triple Gem. There are several hundred monasteries with more than ten thousand monks, all of whom study Mahayana teachings. The reigning king is a man of pure faith who inherited the throne handed down through many generations. He has engaged himself in performing meritorious deeds and is intelligent and studious. There are more than ten stupas built by King Aśoka. Deva temples number several tens and the heretics, who are in the majority, live together. Their disciples are extremely numerous and they worship the god Śunā.

Formerly this god moved from Aruṇa Mountain in the country of Kāpiśī to Śunāśīra Mountain in the south of this country. Acting like a tyrant and doing evil deeds, he rode roughshod over the inhabitants. Those who have faith in him and seek his protection have their wishes fulfilled and those who despise him incur calamity. Thus the people, far and near and high and low, revere him with awe. The kings, ministers, officials, and common people, who observe different customs in neighboring countries, come here without making appointments on an auspicious day each year. They offer either gold, silver, and rare gems or they present sheep, horses, and other domestic animals to the god in competition with each other to show their piety and sincerity. Therefore gold and silver are scattered all over the ground and sheep and horses fill up the valley. Nobody dares to covet them; everyone is eager to make offerings to the god. To those who respect and serve the heretics and practice asceticism wholeheartedly, the god imparts magical incantations, of which the heretics make effective use in most cases; they are quite efficacious for the treatment of disease.

From here going northward for more than five hundred li, I reached the country of Vṛjiṣṭhāna. The country of Vṛjiṣṭhāna is more than two thousand li from east to west and over one thousand li from south to north. Its capital city, Hubina, is over twenty li in circuit. The native products and customs are the same as in the country of Jāguḍa but the language is different. The climate is very cold and the people are rustic and violent by nature. The king, who is of Turkish stock, has deep faith in the Triple Gem, advocates learning, and respects people of virtue.

Proceeding northeast from this country over mountains and across rivers, I passed several tens of small frontier towns in the country of Kāpiśī and reached the Bālasena Range of the Great Snow Mountains. The range is extremely lofty and precipitous, with dangerous and sloping stone steps on a tortuous path winding among the cliffs and peaks, sometimes descending into a deep ravine and ascending to a high precipice. Even in the height of summer it is frozen; one has to break ice while proceeding on the way. After a journey of three days I reached the top of the range, where the cold wind is strong and piercing and the accumulated snow fills the valley. Whenever travelers pass through this place they cannot halt their journey. Even a falcon cannot fly over the range and has to alight and walk across it and then continue its flight. When one looks down on the lower mountains they appear to be small mounds, so this is a very high range in Jambudvīpa. In the mountains there are no trees but many rocky peaks standing closely together, resembling a forest.

After a journey of three more days I descended from the range and reached the country of Andarāb. The country of Andarāb, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than three thousand li in circuit and its capital city is fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. It has no sovereign ruler and is a dependency of the Turks. Mountains and hills connect with one another and the plains are narrow and small. The climate is very cold with strong winds and heavy snow. Crops are abundant and the land is good for growing flowers and fruit. The people are rustic and violent by nature, without moral discipline. 940a They have no idea of sin or merit and are not fond of learning. They erect only deva temples but a few of them believe in the buddha-dharma. There are three monasteries with a few tens of monks, all of whom study the teachings of the Mahāsāṃghika school. There is one stupa built by King Aśoka. Going northwest from there, entering valleys, crossing rivers, and passing a number of small towns on a journey of more than four hundred li, I reached the country of Khost. The country of Khost, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is less than one thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over ten li in circuit. It has no sovereign ruler and is a dependency of the Turks. There are many mountains and the plains are narrow and small. The climate is windy and cold but there are abundant crops and plenty of flowers and

fruit. The people are rustic and violent by nature and the society lacks legal institutions. There are three monasteries with few monks.

From here going northwest, crossing mountains and valleys and passing a number of towns and villages on a journey of more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Huoh. The country of Huoh, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. It has no independent ruler and is under the control of the Turks. The terrain is flat and crops are sown in the proper seasons. Vegetation is luxuriant with profuse flowers and fruit. The climate is mild and pleasant and the social customs are simple and honest. The people are of a rash and fiery disposition and wear garments made of felt and hempen cloth. Most of them believe in the Triple Gem; a few worship various gods. There are over ten monasteries with several hundred monks who study and practice the teachings of both the Mahayana and Hinayana schools. The king is a Turk who rules over the various small countries south of the Iron Gate and always travels from one country to another, without a permanent seat of government.

From here going eastward I entered the Cong Ling (“Onion Range”),  the center of Jambudvīpa. On the south it connects with the Great Snow Mountains, on the north it reaches the Hot Sea and the Thousand Springs, on the west it borders the country of Huoh, and on the east it adjoins the country of Wusha. On each side there are hundreds of cliffs and ridges lining up in a row several thousand li in length. The deep valleys are perilous and precipitous with accumulated ice and snow that never melt; the cold wind is strong and piercing. It is called the Onion Range because many fistular onions are grown on the mountains, or it may be so called because of the oniongreen color of the cliffs.

Going east for more than one hundred li, I reached the country of Mungān. The country of Mungān, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than four hundred li in circuit and its capital city is over fifteen or sixteen li in circuit. The native products and social customs are generally the same as in the country of Huoh. It has no sovereign ruler and is a dependency of the Turks.

To the east is the country of Alini. The country of Alini, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is located on both banks of the Oxus, with a circumference of more than three hundred li; its capital city is over fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. The native products and social customs are generally the 940b same as in the country of Huoh.

To the east is the country of Rāhu. The country of Rāhu, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, borders the Oxus River in the north and is more than two hundred li in circuit; its capital city is over fourteen or fifteen li in circuit. The native products and social customs are generally the same as in the country of Huoh.

From the country of Mungān going east over high ranges, across deep valleys, and passing several cities in the plains on a journey of more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Krisma. The country of Krisma, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than one thousand li from east to west and over three hundred li from south to north. Its capital city is fifteen or sixteen li in circuit. The native products and social customs are generally the same as in the country of Mungān; the only difference is that the people are violent and malicious in disposition.

To the north is Pārghar. The country of Pārghar, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than one hundred li from east to west and over three hundred li from south to north. Its capital city is over twenty li in circuit. The native products and social customs are generally the same as in the country of Krisma.

Going east from the country of Krisma over mountains and across rivers on a journey of more than three hundred li, I reached the country of Himatala. The country of Himatala, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than three thousand li in circuit. The land has a chain of mountains and valleys and the soil is fertile, good for growing crops and producing abundant winter wheat. Vegetation of diverse kinds thrives and fruit of every variety is profuse. The climate is bitterly cold and the people are violent and impetuous in disposition, not knowing what is iniquitous and what is meritorious. They are short and ugly in their features and their ways and manners, as well as their garments made of felt, fur, and hempen cloth, are quite the same as those of the Turks. Their married women wear a wooden horn about three feet high as a headdress, with two branches in front to represent their husbands’ parents, the upper branch indicating the father and the lower one standing for the mother. When one of the woman’s parents has died the branch indicating the deceased person is removed; when both parents have died the horn headdress is discarded altogether.

Formerly this was a powerful country and the royal lineage was of Śākya stock. Most of the states west of the Cong Ling Mountains were subject to this country. Because the land is linked with the territory of the Turks the people of this country are influenced by Turkish customs. They have to guard their own land against invasion and pillage so they wander about, leading a nomadic life in different regions. There are several tens of strong cities, each with its own ruler. The people live in domed felt tents and move from place to place, up to the border of the country of Krisma in the west.

Going east in a valley for more than two hundred li, I reached the country of Badakshān. The country of Badakshān, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city, built on the cliff of a mountain, is six or seven li in circuit. In this land there are mountains and valleys connected in a chain and the earth is covered with sand and stone. The soil is good for growing pulse and wheat and there is plenty of such fruit as grapes, walnuts, pears, and crabapples. The climate is fiercely cold and the people are staunch and violent by nature. They observe no etiquette and do not learn arts or crafts. Their features are ugly and vulgar and they mostly wear felt and hempen garments. There are three or four monasteries with very few monks. The king is a plain and honest man who deeply believes in the Triple Gem.

Going southeast from here in a valley for more than two hundred li, I reached the country of Invakan. The country of Invakan, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than one thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over ten li in circuit. It has a chain of mountains and valleys interspersed with narrow plains and cultivated land. The native products, climate, and the characteristics of the people are the same as in the country of Badakshān but the language differs slightly. The king is a tyrannical person who does not distinguish between good and evil.

From here going southeast, over mountains and across valleys for more than three hundred li by perilous paths in the canyons, I reached the country of Kuraṇa. The country of Kuraṇa, an old territory of the country of Tukhāra, is more than two thousand li in circuit. The land, topography, and climate are the same as in the country of Invakan. There are no legal institutions and the people are vulgar and violent by nature. Most do not perform meritorious deeds though a few of them believe in the buddha-dharma. Their features are ugly and unsightly and they mostly wear felt or hempen clothes. There is a rocky mountain from which much crystal is produced. The people break up the rocks to obtain the mineral. There are a small number of monasteries with few monks. The king is a plain and honest man who respects the Triple Gem.

From here going northeast, climbing over mountains and traversing valleys for more than five hundred li on a hard and dangerous journey, I reached the country of Dharmasthiti (also called Zhenkan or Humi). The country of Dharmasthiti, lying between two mountains, is an old territory of the country of Tukhāra. It is one thousand and five or six hundred li from east to west and four or five li wide; at its narrowest point it is less than one li wide. It winds along the Oxus River. The land is uneven with mounds and hummocks and the earth is covered with shifting sand and stone; the cold wind is harsh and strong. Only wheat and pulse are planted; there are few trees and no flowers or fruit. The country produces many good horses, which, though small in size, are capable of undertaking hard journeys. The people have no sense of etiquette and righteousness. They are rustic and violent by nature, with ugly and unsightly features. Their garments are made of felt and hempen cloth and their eyes are of a dark green color, different from those of the people of other countries. There are more than ten monasteries with few monks.

The capital of this country is the city of Khamdādh, in which there is a monastery built by a former king of this country. The cliffs were cut to [make material] to fill up the gully in order to prepare the building site for the halls and houses of the monastery. Formerly this country was not Buddhist and the people worshiped only heretical gods. A few hundred years ago the Dharma began to spread in this country. The beloved son of the king of this country was once ill; the physicians were unable to cure him so his illness worsened. The king then went in person to a deva temple to seek the help of the god. The priest in charge of the temple, speaking on the god’s behalf, said that the prince would surely be cured and there was no need to worry.

The king was pleased to hear this. On his way back home he met with a śramaṇa who had a remarkable demeanor. Surprised to see the mendicant’s appearance and garments, the king inquired where he had come from. This śramaṇa, who had realized sainthood, wished to spread the buddha-dharma and that was why he was dressed as he was. He answered the king, saying, “I am a disciple of the Tathāgata, a bhikkhu, as people say.” Feeling worried in his mind, the king anxiously said to him, “My son is ill and in critical condition.” The śramaṇa said, “Even though the spirits of your ancestors may be brought back to life it will be difficult to save your beloved son.” The king said, “The god has said that my son will not die, yet this śramaṇa says that he is near his end. How can I believe the words of such a humbug?” When the king returned to his palace, however, he found that his son had died. The king kept it a secret and did not send out an obituary, but went to see the priest, who again assured him that his son would not die and his disease would be cured. The king, enraged, had the priest bound and rebuked him, saying, “You people live in a group doing a lot of evil and you cheat people with your influence to gain advantages. My son has already died yet you still say that he will be cured of his illness. Your fraudulence and deceit are intolerable. The priest should be put to death and the temple demolished.” The priest was killed and the image of the god was removed and thrown into the Oxus River. After that the king on the return journey and on the way he again met with the śramaṇa. He was glad to meet the mendicant, showed him respect, and paid homage to him, saying, “Formerly, I had no sagacious person to guide me and I set foot on the wrong path. Although it has been a long tradition it is time now for a reformation. I hope you will condescend to come to my residence.”

At the king’s invitation, the śramaṇa accompanied him to the royal palace. After the prince’s burial the king said to him, “The human world is entangle med in the cycle of rebirth. When my son was ill I asked the god about his fate, and the god lied and said that my son would certainly be cured of his illness. Then I heard your information, which proved to be true. From this I know that your Dharma is believable. Please have pity on me and guide this deluded disciple.” He invited the śramaṇa to make a plan for the construction of a monastery according to established rules. The temple of the old monastery was built for the arhat and since then the buddha-dharma began to flourish in this country.

In the great temple of the monastery is a stone image of the Buddha, over which a gilded copper canopy, adorned with various precious things, is suspended. Whenever someone pays homage to the Buddha’s image by circumambulating it the canopy also turns along with the worshiper; if the person stops and sands still, the canopy stops turning too. Nobody knows the cause of this mystery. I heard some old people say that the canopy is suspended by the willpower of a saint, or that it is operated by a mechanical device. I noticed that the stone walls of the hall were high and strong and I could not tell which of the stories was true.

Going north over a great mountain in this country, I reached the country of Śikni. The country of Śikni is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over five or six li in circuit. Mountains and valleys connect together and sand and stone are spread all over the wilderness. The country produces much winter wheat but there are few other cereals. Trees are rare and flowers and fruit are scarce. The climate is very cold and the people are rustic and bold by custom, cruelly making slaughter and theft their profession. 941b They do not know about ritual and righteousness and make no distinction between good and evil. They hold wrong ideas about future misfortune and happiness and fear disasters in their present life. Their features are vulgar and unsightly and they wear fur or hempen clothes. Their written language is the same as in the country of Tukhāra but they speak in a different way. Going south over a great mountain in the country of Dharmasthiti, I reached the country of Shangmi. The country of Shangmi is two thousand and five or six hundred li in circuit, with alternating mountains and valleys as well as high and low hills. All sorts of cereals are grown; pulse and wheat are particularly abundant. It yields a large amount of grapes and produces orpiment, which is obtained by breaking up rocks hewn from the cliffs. The mountain

gods are fierce and malicious and have repeatedly caused calamities. Travelers may be safe and have a pleasant journey if they worship the gods with offerings before entering the mountains; otherwise they may encounter abrupt windstorms and hail. The climate is cold and the people are impetuous by custom but simple and honest in disposition. They have no idea of etiquette and righteousness. Their wisdom and resourcefulness are limited and their crafts are shallow and superficial. Their written language is the same as that of the country of Tukhāra but they speak in a different way. They mostly wear felt and hempen clothes. The king is of Śākya stock and respects the buddha-dharma; the people following his edification are all pure Buddhists. There are two monasteries with very few monks.

Going over mountains and across valleys, through dangerous regions in the northeast part of the country for more than seven hundred li, I reached the Pamir Valley, which is more than one thousand li from east to west and over one hundred li from south to north; at its narrowest point it is less than ten li wide. It is situated between two snowy mountains and a fierce and strong cold wind blows day and night. Snow falls in spring and summer. The soil is saline and has much gravel; it is uncultivable and so there are scarcely any plants. It is an empty and dreary place without human habitation.

In the Pamir Valley there is a great dragon lake that is more than three hundred li from east to west and over fifty li from south to north. Lying among the ranges of the Cong Ling Mountains in the center of Jambudvīpa, this lake is in the highest position. The water is pure and clear, of unfathomable depth, and bluish-black in color with a very sweet and refreshing taste. In the water dwell sharks, hornless dragons, fish, normal dragons, soft-shelled turtles, alligators, and tortoises; floating on the water’s surface are mandarin ducks, swans, wild geese, and bustards. The huge eggs laid by various birds are left in the wilds among the marshes or on sandy islets.

The lake has a large outlet on the west side and water flows westward to the eastern boundary of the country of Dharmasthiti, where it joins the Oxus River and flows west. All streams on the right side of this point flow to the west. On the east of the lake, another large stream flows northeast to the western boundary of the country of Kasha, where it joins the Sītā River and flows east. All streams on the left side of this point flow to the east. Across a mountain in the south of the Pamir Valley is the country of Balūra, where much gold and silver are produced; the gold is of a fiery color.

From this valley going southeast for more than five hundred li, climbing over 941c mountains by dangerous paths that are unihabitated all along the way and full of ice and snow, I reached the country of Kabhanda. The country of Kabhanda is more than two thousand li in circuit and its capital city, founded on a large rocky ridge with the Sītā River at its back, is over twenty li in circuit. The mountains and ridges of the country connect together and the valleys and plains are small and narrow. There are few varieties of cereals but pulse and wheat are abundant. Trees are rare and flowers and fruit are scarce. The plains and swamps lie in waste and the cities and towns are desolate. The people have no idea of etiquette and righteousness by custom and seldom learn crafts. They are rustic and violent by nature but are valiant and brave as well. Their features are ugly and unsightly and they wear felt and hempen clothes. Their writing and spoken language are generally the same as in the country of Kasha. They have pure faith, however, and respect the buddha dharma. There are over ten monasteries with more than five hundred monks, who study the Hinayana teachings of the Sarvāstivāda school. The present king is a simple and honest man who venerates the buddha-dharma. He has a composed and refined demeanor and is devoted to learning. Many years have elapsed since the establishment of the country. The king professed himself a descendant of Cīnadevagotra (Chinese, “Sun-god Stock”; see below).

Formerly the country was a wild valley in the ranges of the Cong Ling Mountains. In the past a Persian king once obtained a Chinese lady for his queen. As the bride was being taken to Persia she passed this place at a time when a rebellion was taking place. The road leading from east to west was blocked so the king’s bride was lodged on an isolated peak, so steep and lofty that ladders had to be used for going up and down. Guards were posted around the peak to keep watch day and night. After three months the uprising was quelled but when the bride was about to resume the journey she was found to be pregnant. The envoy who escorted her was terror-stricken and said to his followers, “The king ordered us to bring his bride back but we met with the revolt and remained in a precarious situation in the wilds, not knowing what would befall us. Thanks to the virtuous influence of our king, the insurgency has been put down. Now at this moment of resuming our return journey, the king’s bride is found to be with child. I am worried about the situation and do not know where I will die. We should find the chief culprit so that he can be put to death later.” They made a clamorous interrogation but could not find out the true criminal. At that moment the bride’s maidservant told the envoy, “Do not condemn anyone. Tthe pregnancy] is due to her union with a god. Every day at noon a man emerged from the disc of the sun and came to this place on horseback.” The envoy said, “If that is so, how can we free ourselves of the blame? If we go back we shall be put to death, but if we stay here troops will be sent to attack us. What shall we do in such an awkward predicament?” They all said, “This is not a trivial matter. Who would go willingly to suffer the punishment of death? We sgould instead pass our days abroad.”

So they built a palace and other houses on the top of a rocky peak, more than three hundred paces in circuit. They constructed a city wall around the palace and made the Chinese lady their queen. Officials were appointed and a legal system was established. When the time was came she gave birth to a son, who grew up into a handsome lad. He received the title of king and his mother acted as regent. He could fly about in the air and had control over the wind and clouds. His prestige and virtue spread far and his fame and edification extended to a great distance. All the neighboring regions and countries became

his vassal states. When at length this king died at an old age his corpse was entombed in a cave in the mountains over one hundred li southeast of the capital. The corpse has become a mummy and is still intact, resembling an emaciated figure that seems to be fast asleep. Its garments are changed from time to time and sweet flowers are always placed before it by his descendants from generation to generation up to the present time. Because their maternal ancestor was a Chinese lady and on the paternal side he was the sun god, they claimed to be descendants of Chinese–sun-god stock. The facial features of the members of the royal clan are similar to those of Chinese people and they wear square caps, but they dress in the attire of the Hu people. Their offspring degenerated and suffered oppression from powerful countries.

When King Aśoka prospered in the world he built a stupa in the palace, and the king [of this country] went to live in the northeast corner of the palace. He converted his old palace into a monastery for the venerable śāstra master Kumaralāta. The terraces and pavilions were lofty and spacious and solemn images of the Buddha were installed in them. The venerable monk, a native of the country of Takṣaśilā, was intelligent since childhood and renounced the world at an early age to engage in the study of the scriptures and fix his mind on the abstruse doctrines. Every day he recited thirty-two thousand words and wrote them down as well. Thus he was prominent in learning among contemporary scholars and enjoyed a high reputation in his time. He upheld the right Dharma and crushed erroneous views; in his brilliant discussions there was no question he could not answer.  He was greatly esteemed in all of the five parts of India. His writings amounted to several tens of books, all of which were popular works studied by all scholars. He was the founder of the Sautrāntika school. In his time, Aśvaghoṣa in the east, Deva in the south, Nāgārjuna in the west, and Kumaralāta in the north were called the Four Brilliant Suns. Hearing of this venerable monk’s great fame, the king of this country mobilized his troops, attacked the country of Takṣaśilā, and captured him. It was out of respect for him that this monastery was constructed.

More than three hundred li away to the southeast of the capital is a great rocky cliff with two caves. In each cave an arhat entered the samādhi of complete extinction, sitting erect and immovable in the shape of an emaciated man, and their skin and skeletons are undecayed. They have been there for more than seven hundred years. Their hair continues to grow so the monks shave their hair and change their garments once a year.

From the great cliff going northeast over ranges by a dangerous path for more than two hundred li, I reached Puṇyaśālā (“Charity House”), located at the center of a depression about one hundred qing in area (1 qing = 6.67 hectares). It is surrounded by four mountains of the eastern ridges of the Cong Ling Mountains. Snow accumulates in winter as well as in the summer season and the cold wind blows hard and strong. The land is of saline soil and does not grow crops. There are no trees, only short grasses. Even in the hot season snowstorms are likely to occur. On entering this region travelers may be immediately enshrouded by clouds and mist. This is a dangerous place, dreaded by traveling merchants. I heard some old people say that once 942b in the past a large group of merchants, with several thousand camels laden with goods to gain profit, encountered a snowstorm at this place and all the people and animals lost their lives. At that time a great arhat in the country

of Kabhanda saw the catastrophe from a distance. Having pity on the merchants caught in danger, he intended to rescue them through his supernatural power but when he arrived at the spot the merchants were already dead. So he collected the jewels and valuables and all their property and built a house in which he stored various commodities. He also purchased a piece of land in the neighboring country to make a settle ment in the frontier city and hired people to live there to look after travelers. At present all wayfarers and merchants are provided with daily necessaries at this place.

From here going eastward down the eastern ridges of the Cong Ling Mountains, climbing over perilous ranges and across deep valleys, through dangerous paths in the gorges, and braving continuous wind and snow, I proceeded for more than eight hundred li and emerged from the Cong Ling range, arriving in the country of  Wusha. The country of  Wusha is more than one thousand li in circuit and its capital city is over ten li in circuit. It borders on the Sītā River in the south and the land is fertile, producing abundant crops. The trees are luxuriant with plenty of flowers and fruit. It yields much jade of different hues, such as white, jet[-black], and sapphire. The climate is mild with good weather favorable for the growth of crops. The people lack etiquette and righteousness and are strong-willed and rustic in disposition; they are deceitful and have little sense of shame. Their written and spoken language are somewhat similar to those of the country of Kasha. Their features are ugly and unsightly and their clothes are made of fur and hemp. They believe in and respect the buddha-dharma, however. There are some ten monasteries with less than a thousand monks, who study the Hinayana teachings of the Sarvāstivāda school. The royal lineage has been extinct for several hundred year so this country has no sovereign ruler and is subject to the country of Kabhanda.

Going westward from the capital for more than two hundred li, I reached a great mountain where the mists of the mountain rises high and turns into clouds upon touching the rocks. The precipices are lofty and steep, as if they were broken, and they seemed likely to collapse at any moment. The stupa built at the summit affords a splendid sight. I heard some local people say that several hundred years ago a cliff of the mountain collapsed and exposed a bhikkhu sitting with closed eyes behind the rocks. He was tall in stature but appeared to be emaciated. His beard and hair covered his face and shoulders. A hunter saw him and reported the case to the king. The king came in person to see and worship the bhikkhu, and the inhabitants and officials in the capital also came of their own accord to vie with one another in offering incense and flowers. The king asked, “Who is this man, so tall in stature?” A bhikkhu said in reply, “This man with long beard and hair, clad in religious robes, is an arhat absorbed in the samādhi of mental extinction. One who is absorbed in such a samādhi has prelimited the duration of the trance. He may be aroused by the sound of a musical instrument or by the shining of sunlight; with such signals he may be awakened from the abstract meditation. If there is no disturbance he will remain motionless. The power of samādhi sustains his body 942c from decaying but when he has come out of the samādhi his physical body, which is composed of food, may become feeble and fragile. We should infuse him with ghee to nurture his body before we awaken him from the mental concentration.” The king said, “Let it be so!”

A musical instrument was then struck. As soon as the instrument was sounded the arhat awakened and, after looking around for awhile, he said, “Who are you, of such base appearance and wearing religious robes?” The monk said, “I am a bhikkhu.” The arhat said, “Where is my teacher, Kāśyapa Tathāgata?” The monk said, “He entered mahānirvāṇa a long time ago.” Hearing this, the arhat closed his eyes, disappointed. He then asked, “Has Śākyamuni Tathāgata come into the world yet?” The monk said in reply, “He has passed away after having been born into the world to guide living beings.” When the arhat had heard this information he lowered his head. After a long while he ascended into the air and cremated himself with fire produced through his supernatural power, and his ashes dropped to the ground. The king collected them and built a stupa for them.

Going northward from here for more than five hundred li over mountains and through deserts and wilderness, I reached the country of Kasha (formerly called Shule, the name of the capital city. To be correct, it should be called Śrīkrītati, which indicates that the name Shule [for the country] is apparently wrong). The country of Kasha is more than five thousand li in circuit, consisting mostly of desert with little cultivable land. Crops are abundant and there are plenty of flowers and fruit. It produces fine felt and hemp, as well as exquisitely woven cotton cloth and woolen carpets. The climate is mild and the weather changes according to the seasons. The people are rustic and violent by nature and deceitful by custom. They have little sense of etiquette and righteousness and their learning is superficial. It is their custom to compress the heads of their newborn babies into a flat shape. They are vulgar and coarse in appearance, tattoo their bodies, and have green eyes. Their written language evolved after the fashion of the language of India. Although there are deletions and aberrations, the linguistic structure and function are mainly preserved. The diction and accent of their dialect differ from those of other countries. They piously believe in the buddha-dharma and diligently perform meritorious deeds. There are several hundred monasteries with over ten thousand monks who study the Sarvāstivāda school of the Hinayana teachings. The monks do not delve into the doctrines but they can recite by heart most of the texts. Therefore many of them are reciters of the Tripiṭaka and the Mahāvibhāṣā-śāstra.

From here going southeast for more than five hundred li, crossing the Sītā River and a great sandy range, I reached the country of Cukuka (formerly called Juqu). The country of Cukuka is more than one thousand li in circuit and its capital city, which is over ten li in circuit, is in an impregnable position with a large number of registered inhabitants. There is a chain of mountains and hillocks covered with stone and gravel. Two rivers wind through the country so the land is good for cultivation. Such fruit as grapes, pears, and crabapples are abundant. The seasonal wind is cold. The people are rude and deceitful by custom and robbery is committed openly. Their writing is similar to that of Gostana (see below) but the spoken language is different. They have little sense of etiquette and righteousness and their learning is superficial, but they piously believe in the Triple Gem and are fond of performing meritorious deeds. There

are several tens of monasteries, most of which are in ruins. The monks, about a hundred in number, study Mahayana teachings.

In the southern part of this country there is a great mountain with lofty peaks and ranges standing one behind the other. The grass and trees are cold resistant and they are always the same, whether in spring or autumn. The streams in the gullies flow rapidly in all directions. On the cliffs there are caves and rock cells scattered all over the precipices. Many Indians who achieved sainthood came here from a great distance through their supernatural power of levitation and settled in this place. Many of the arhats died here, so a large number of stupas have been built in the mountain. There are still three arhats living in the caves, absorbed in the samādhi of mental extinction. They look emaciated but their beards and hair continue to grow, so the monks go to shave them regularly. A large number of Mahayana scriptures in particular are stored in this country; of all the places where Buddhism has prevailed none can surpass this country in its collection of scriptures. Books consisting of a hundred thousand stanzas each amount to more than ten titles, and those of fewer stanzas are widely circulated indeed.

Going eastward from there for more than eight hundred li over ranges and across valleys, I reached the country of Gostana (this name is the elegant form of the local dialect, meaning “earth-nipple.” In the vulgar language it is called Huanna, while the Huns call it Yudun. In the other Hu language it is designated as Qidan, and in India it is named Qudan. Its old form, Yutian, is incorrect). The country of Gostana is more than four thousand li in circuit and more than half the country is desert. There is only a limited area of cultivable land, which yields cereals and diverse kinds of fruit. The country produces woolen carpets and fine felt and the people are skillful in spinning and weaving silk. It also yields white and black jade. The climate is pleasant but there are dust whirls. The people have a sense of etiquette and righteousness and are genial and polite in disposition. They are fond of learning the classics and the arts and they are conversant with various crafts. The common people are wealthy and happy and the registered families live in peace and security. The state promotes music and the people love singing and dancing. A few of them wear woolen, hempen, felt, or fur clothes, but the majority use silk and white cotton for their clothing. They are graceful in deportment and well disciplined in behavior. Their system of writing follows that of India, with slight alterations and some reforms; their spoken language differs from that of other countries. They esteem the buddha-dharma and there are over a hundred monasteries with more than five thousand monks who mostly study Mahayana teachings. The king is a very brave man and holds the buddha-dharma in high esteem. He claims to be a descendant of the deity Vaiśravaṇa.

In the past the deity Vaiśravaṇa stayed here when this country was uninhabited. After King Aśoka’s prince had his eyes gouged out in the country of Takṣaśilā, the king angrily reproached his ministers and exiled some of the powerful and influential families to settle in the desert valleys to the north of the Snow Mountains. In the course of moving from place to place in search of pasture, the exiled people came to the western region of this country and elected their leader as king. Meanwhile, one of the sons of the emperor of a

land in the east was condemned to banishment and went to live in the eastern region of this country. At the instigation of his followers he made himself king. For a long time the two kings were not in contact with one another. Once, when both men were out hunting, they met in the wilderness and each inquired of the other about his ancestral lineage. They then had a dispute over the question of who was superior in rank. The argument became more heated and they were soon on the brink of resorting to force. Someone advised them, “Why should we fight a decisive battle while out hunting, when we have not fully mobilized our troops? We should go back to arrange our fighters in battle array and then make an appointment to meet again.” So the two kings returned to their respective countries, had their soldiers drill and practice the arts of war, and boosted their morale. On the appointed day the two armies met on the battleground, with colors flying and drums beating, and the following day they engaged. The lord from the west was defeated and while attempting to retreat he was decapitated. The lord from the east comforted and assembled the inhabitants of the defeated country on his victorious march. He moved his capital to the central part of the country and planned to build city walls. He was concerned about not knowing where the ground was clay and feared that his plan would not succeed, so he made an announcement to invite learned soil scientists from far and near. An ash-smearing ascetic carrying a big calabash of water approached to recommend himself to the king, saying, “I know the structure of soil.” He dripped the water to mark the ground in a roundabout way twice and then departed and disappeared. The foundations of the city walls were laid down along the water marks and the city became the seat of government. The present king has made his capital in this city. Although it is not in a high and invulnerable position it is strong and difficult for attackers to capture. Since ancient times no one has ever occupied it in a war.

By the time the king had moved his capital to the newly built city for the establishment of his government and the settlement of his people, he was already getting old, after many achievements and exploits. He was childless and feared that his ancestral line would die out, so he went to the place of the deity Vaiśravaṇa to pray for a son and a baby burst out from the forehead of the image of the deity. The king carried the baby home, to the delight of the whole country. The baby refused to drink milk, however, and the king feared that it might not live long. So he went again to the temple to seek nourishment for the baby. The earth in front of the deity’s image suddenly bulged into the shape of a nipple, from which the baby drew milk [and he received nourishment in this way] until he grew up. He became an unprecedentedly brave and brilliant man whose influence spread far and he renovated the temple in honor of his forefather. Since then the royal lineage has continued from generation to generation without cessation. That is why the temple is full of jewels and gems and ceremonies of worship and sacrifice are regularly offered to the deity without neglect. Because their ancestor was nursed with milk from an earth-nipple, the people named their country after it.

About ten li to the south of the royal city is a great monastery built by a previous king of this country for the arhat Vairocana (“Universal Shining” in Chinese). Formerly, when the buddha-dharma had not yet spread to this country, the arhat came here and stayed in the wood, sitting in meditation. Someone saw him and was amazed by his appearance and garments. He reported the matter to the king, who came in person to see the arhat and said, “Who are you, staying alone in the solitary wood?” The arhat said, “I am a 943c disciple of the Tathāgata and I live alone, practicing meditation. O King, you should perform meritorious deeds to propagate the Buddha’s teachings and build a monastery for the assembly of monks.” The king said, “What are the virtues of the Tathāgata and what divine powers does he possess that made you dwell like a bird in the wood and practice his teachings so assiduously?” The arhat said in reply, “The Tathāgata has compassion for all creatures of the four kinds of birth and guides all living beings of the three realms, either overtly or covertly, in the states of existence or extinction. Those who follow his Dharma will become free of birth and death, while those who do not believe in it will be entangled in the net of passion.” The king said, “Truly, as you have said, this matter is beyond verbal discussion. Since he is a great saint he may as well appear in physical form so that I might see him. Once I have seen him I will build a monastery, believe in him as my refuge, and propagate his teachings.” The arhat said, “After you have completed the construction of a monastery you will receive his spiritual response.” Hopeful, the king agreed to build the monastery. When the construction was completed people from far and near assembled to celebrate the occasion as a religious function, but they lacked the instrument to be sounded for summoning the monks. The king said to the arhat, “Now the monastery is completed but where is the Buddha?” The arhat said, “Work with utmost sincerity; the holy evidence is not far off.” The king then prayed and worshiped and suddenly an image of the Buddha descended from the air and handed an instrument to him. Thereafter the king piously believed in the Buddha and propagated his teachings.

More than twenty li to the southwest of the royal city is Gośṛṅga (“Cow horn”) Mountain, with two high peaks surrounded by precipitous cliffs. In the valley a monastery was constructed, in which the Buddha’s image often emitted a bright light. In the past the Tathāgata once came here and briefly preached the essence of the Dharma to human and heavenly beings. He prophesied that a country would be founded here and that the people would revere his teachings and follow Mahayana tenets. Amid the rocks of Cow horn Mountain there is a large cave in which an arhat is absorbed in the meditation of mental extinction, waiting for the advent of Maitreya Buddha. For several hundred years offerings have been made to him without cease. Recently the rocks collapsed and blocked the entrance to the cave. The king sent his soldiers to clear away the fallen stones but a swarm of black wasps flew out to sting them. Thus up to now the entrance has not been reopened.

About ten li to the southwest of the royal city is Dīrghabhāvana Monastery, in which there is a standing image of the Buddha, made of ramie and lacquer, that came by itself to this place from the country of Kuci. A cabinet minister of this country was once banished to live in Kuci and while he was in exile he always worshiped this image. After he was recalled to his own country he continued to recall and venerate the image from afar. One night the image suddenly came to him. The man offered his residence for the construction of this monastery.

Going westward from the royal city for more than three hundred li, I

reached the city of Bhagya. In this city is an image of the seated Buddha, aboutseven feet in height, with consummate features, quiet and dignified,

and with a precious crown on its head that occasionally emits a bright light. I heard the local people say that this image was originally in the country of Kaśmīra and had been transported to its present location. In the past a śrāmaṇera, the disciple of an arhat, once desired to eat some fermented rice cake when he was on his deathbed. The arhat saw with his supernatural power of clairvoyance that this kind of cake was obtainable in the country of Gostana, so he went there through his faculty of divine feet and obtained some of the cake for his disciple. Having eaten the cake, the śrāmaṇera wished to be reborn in that country after death. His wish was actually fulfilled and he was reborn as a prince of [Gostana]. After his succession to the throne his prestige spread far and near., and later he crossed the Snow Mountains to invade the country of Kaśmīra. The king of Kaśmīra had concentrated his troops to resist the invaders at the frontier but the arhat exhorted him, “There is no need to resort to force. I can repulse them.” The arhat then went to speak on the essence of various Dharmas to the king of Gostana. At first the king would not listen to him and still wanted to send his army to the battleground. The arhat then produced the robe that the king had worn  in his previous life as the śrāmaṇera. At the sight of the robe the king gained the supernatural faculty of remembering past events. He apologized to the king of Kaśmīra and withdrew his troops after reconciliation. He also brought back with his army the Buddha’s image that he had worshiped when he was a śrāmaṇera in his former life. When the image was brought to this place it refused to be moved any further, and so a monastery was built to enshrine the image where it stood. Monks were invited to live in the monastery and the king’s precious crown was placed on head of the image. The present crown on the image’s head is the one that was offered by the previous king.

Along the main path, in a great desert one hundred and fifty or sixty li to the west of the royal city, are mounds that are actually heaps of earth dug out by rats from their holes. I heard the local people say that the rats in the desert were as large as hedgehogs, that the ones with golden or silvery hair were the chiefs, and that each time they came out of their holes the other rats always followed them as attendants. The Hun people once led hundreds of thousands of troops to attack the frontier [of Gostana] and they were stationed beside the rat mounds. At that time the king of Gostana had only a few tens of thousands of soldiers under his command and he feared that his army was not strong enough to resist the enemy. He always knew that the rats in the desert were marvelous animals but he did not regard them as divine beings. When the invaders arrived both the monarch and his subjects were greatly surprised and did not know how to deal with the situation. As a temporary expedient they tried conducting a sacrificial ceremony, praying to the rats in the hope that they might help strengthen the army. That night the king of

Gostana dreamed that a giant rat said to him, “I wish to assist you and I hope you will get your men ready for battle at an early hour. If you engage the enemy tomorrow you will certainly win the day.” Knowing that he had spiritual assistance, the king of Gostana mobilized his troops and ordered them to launch a surprise attack before dawn. The Hun invaders were frightened when they heard of this. They rushed to put on their armor and mount the horses and chariots, but they found that the saddles and equipment, the strings of their bows and ties for the armor, and all such belts and cords had been gnawed through by the rats. The defenders then arrived suddenly and the Hun people were overcome and suffered capture and massacre; the commanders were killed and the soldiers taken prisoner. The Hun people, thinking that their opponents had the help of divine beings, were awestruck. Out of gratitude toward the rats the king of Gostana built a temple to offer sacrifices to them, and this tradition has been carried down from generation to generation with a deep and special feeling of wonderment. From the monarch on down to common citizens, everyone performed sacrificial ceremonies to gain blessedness. Whenever they passed by the rat holes they alighted from their horses and carriages to worship the rats and offer clothing, bows, and arrows or fragrant flowers and delicious food to them, so as to pray for happiness. Because they did so with sincerity they gained benefit in most cases. If no sacrifice was offered one might meet with calamity.

Five or six li to the west of the royal city is Samājñā Monastery, in which there is a stupa more than a hundred feet high that shows frequent spiritual signs and occasionally emits a divine light. In the past an arhat once came from a distance and stayed in the wood, issuing a bright light through his supernatural power. From a storied pavilion the king saw the light shining brightly in the wood at night and asked his attendants about it, and they all said, “A śramaṇa has come from a distance and is now sitting in the wood, manifesting his supernatural powers.” The king then ordered his driver to prepare his carriage and went in person to see the monk. When he saw the sage he cherished a feeling of respect for him and, in admiration of the monk’s demeanor, the king invited him to come to the palace. The śramaṇa said, “Everything has its own appropriate position and each person has his particular inclination. A secluded wood with marshes and streams is the place I appreciate, while lofty halls and grand mansions are not what I should accept.” The king respected him all the more and treated him with even greater honor. A monastery was built with a stupa, and the śramaṇa was invited to stay there.

Before long, to his great delight  the king obtained several hundred grains of relic bones through his profound devotion. He regretted that the relics, as a spiritual response, had come a bit too late to have been enshrined in the stupa, which would consequently have become a superior holy site. He went to the monastery and told his idea to the monks. The arhat said, “O King, do not worry! I can place the relics under the stupa for you. You should put the relics in golden, silver, copper, iron, and stone cases, one by one.” The king ordered craftsmen to make the required cases and they completed the task in a few days’ time. The cases were sent to the monastery in precious carriages and hundreds of heralds, attendants, and officials from the palace escorted the relics, while tens of thousands of people watched the procession. The 944c arhat lifted up the stupa with his right hand and placed it in his palm, saying to the king, “You may place the relics now.” Then the ground was dug up for the cases and when this had been done, the stupa was replaced on the site without any damage or slanting. Those who witnessed the event said in admiration that they had never before seen such a sight; their faith in the Buddha became even more sincere and their minds of respecting the Dharma more steadfast.

The king said to his group of officials, “I have heard that the Buddha’s power is inconceivable and his divine faculties are unfathomable. He can appear in hundreds of myriads of bodies simultaneously and take birth either in the human world or in heaven. He can lift up the world in his palm without making living beings feel any agitation. He expounded the nature of the Dharma in normal language to enable all creatures to reach enlightenment in different ways, according to their varying capacities. His divine power is incomparable and his wisdom is beyond description. Although his corporeal form has vanished his teachings have been handed down, so that we can enjoy the peace of his doctrine, live under the influence of his virtue, taste the flavor of the Way, and admire his characteristic way of life. Owing to his blessing, we have now obtained these holy relics. Do your utmost, all of you, to pay deep respect to the Buddha. You will then understand that the buddha dharma is abstruse and profound.”

Five or six li to the southeast of the royal city is Maza Monastery, which was established by a concubine of a former king of this country. In the past neither the mulberry tree or silkworms were known in this country. Hearing that a certain country in the east had mulberry trees and silkworms, [the king] dispatched a messenger to seek for them, but the monarch of the eastern country kept them hidden and would not grant the request. He gave orders to the frontier guards to prevent mulberry seeds or silkworms from being smuggled out of the country. The king of Gostana then humbly proposed to enter into a matrimonial alliance with the eastern country. The king of the eastern country had ambitions to exert his influence over distant lands through mollification, so he readily agreed to the proposal. The king of Gostana appointed an envoy to collect the bride and said to him, “Tell the daughter of the monarch of the eastern country that we have no silk thread, nor do we have we mulberry trees or silkworms, in our country. Ask her to bring some seeds with her [so that silk may be produced] to make garments for her.” Hearing this, the daughter of the monarch secretly obtained some mulberry seeds and silkworms, which she hid inside the cloth of her hat. When she arrived at the frontier the guards searched all her belongings but they dared not inspect her hat. In this manner she entered the country of Gostana and lodged at the place where Maza Monastery now stands. She was then taken to the royal palace with proper rites and ceremony and the mulberry seeds and silkworms were kept at the palace. In early spring the mulberry seeds were planted, and in the month of breeding silkworms the leaves of the mulberry trees were plucked to feed them. In the early stages [the silkworms] were also fed with leaves of miscellaneous trees. From then on the mulberry trees thrived, their luxuriant foliage casting shadows in patches. The king’s concubine made an inscription on a stone tablet to lay down a rule forbidding people from harming the silkworms. Only when the silk moths had all flown away could the cocoons be reeled; the gods would not protect those who dared infringe this rule. This monastery was built in memory of the first group of silkworms. There are several withered mulberry trees, said to be the first mulberries planted there. Silkworms are not killed in this country and if anyone stealthily reels silk [from cocoons with larvae inside] he will reap a poor harvest in sericulture the following year.

   More than one hundred li to the southeast of the [royal] city is a large                             

river flowing northwest, which the people use for irrigation. At one time it dried up, to the great surprise of the king. He rode in his carriage to inquire of an arhat monk, saying, “The water of the large river is usually drawn and used by the people; what is the fault that has caused it to dry up? Have I been unjust in managing state affairs, have my virtuous deeds not extended to all? If not, then why is the punishment from above so severe?” The arhat said, “Your Majesty rules the country in peace and good order. The drying up of the river is caused by the dragon [in the river]. It befits Your Majesty to immediately offer sacrifice and say prayers to him, and then the lost advantages may be recovered.” The king returned to his palace and performed a sacrificial ceremony for the dragon in the river. Suddenly a woman came over the waves and said to the king, “My husband has been dead for a long time and I am unable to carry out your order. That is why the river has dried up and the farmers have lost the advantage of irrigation. If you will select one of your noble ministers to be my husband the river’s waters will flow as usual.” The king said, “Please do as you wish.” The dragon [woman] looked at the ministers and was delighted with one of them. After returning to the palace the king said to his ministers, “My ministers are the pillars of the state and agriculture is the source of the food that sustains our lives. If I lose my ministers the state will be endangered, but without food all of us will die. What shall I choose, the endangerment of the state or death?” The minister [chosen by the dragon woman] arose from his seat and kneeled, saying in reply, “I am an incompetent person who is unworthy of my important position, and I have always thought of dedicating myself to the service of my country but have not yet had the chance. Now, having been selected [to take up the appointment], how could I dare refuse to bear this important responsibility? If it is for the benefit of the masses of people, there is no need to be reluctant about sending away a minister. A minister is merely an assistant of the state, while the people are the foundation of the country. I hope Your Majesty will hesitate no more. I would be fortunate if a monastery can be constructed as a good deed done on my behalf.” The king consented to his request and the work was completed in no time.

The minister then asked permission to go to the dragon’s palace at an early date. All the officials and common people in the whole country held farewell banquets in his honor, accompanied by the performance of music. The minister, dressed in white and riding a white horse, bade farewell to the king and expressed thanks to his countrymen before he rode into the river. The horse walked on the surface of the water without sinking. When it came to midstream the minister waved his whip to slice the water and made an opening, through which he dropped into the river. After a short while the white horse floated out of the river, carrying a sandalwood drum on its back along with a letter, which said in brief, “Your Majesty did not despise me as a humble person and gave me the chance to be selected by the goddess. I hope you will perform more meritorious deeds for the benefit of your country and people. The big drum is to be hung to the southeast of the city. Before the approach of invaders it will sound by itself to give warning.” Since then water has flowed in the river and the people have made use of it up to now. After such a the long lapse of time the original dragon drum is no longer in existence. At the place where it was hung another drum has been put as a substitute. The monastery beside the pond is deserted and in ruins, and there are no monks living there.

More than three hundred li to the east of the royal city is a large expanse of marshland several tens of qing in area, the earth of which is reddish-black in color; it supports no vegetation whatsoever. I heard some old people say

that this was the place where the army [of this country] was defeated. In the past a country in the east once raised a million troops to make an invasion to the west. At that time the king of Gostana prepared an army several lakhs strong to resist the enemy from the east. The two armies met at this place and engaged in battle and the soldiers of the west were defeated by the troops from the east. The latter, advancing in the flush of victory, slaughtered people cruelly, captured the king [of Gostana], killed his generals, and massacred the soldiers, sparing not a single one. The ground was stained with blood and the traces are still visible.

Going eastward for more than thirty li from the battleground, I reached the city of Bhīmā, in which there is a standing image of the Buddha carved out of sandalwood, over twenty feet high, which has shown spiritual responses many times and often emits a bright light. If someone who suffers from a painful ailment pastes a piece of gold foil on the image at the part that corresponds to where his ailment is, he may be instantly relieved of the pain. If someone says prayers to the image with earnest devotion their wishes will be fulfilled in most cases. I heard the local people say that this image was made by King Udayana of the country of Kauśāmbī when the Buddha was living in the world. After the Buddha’s demise the image came through the air from that country to the city of Araurak in the north of this country [of Gostana].

The inhabitants of this city were living in happy and wealthy conditions and were deeply attached to erroneous views so when the image first came to the city they did not treasure or respect it. Even though they heard that it had come by itself they merely regarded this as a miracle and did not venerate the image as an unusual object of worship. An arhat later came to worship this image and the people, amazed at his strange garb, hurriedly went to report this to the king, who then ordered them to throw sand and earth on the strange person. The arhat was covered with sand and earth and no food was provided to him. At that time a man who always worshiped the image with veneration could not bear to see the arhat being starved and secretly offered him food. When the arhat was about to leave he told the man, “Seven days from now a sandstorm will cover the entire city and no one will remain alive. You should know this and prepare an escape for yourself. This disaster will occur because the people cast sand and earth on me.” After saying this the arhat departed and immediately disappeared.

That man entered the city and warned his relatives and friends, but those who heard the information sneered at him. On the following day a big gale swiftly arose and blew away the filthy dust, while various kinds of gems and precious substances rained down all over the roads and thoroughfares. The people then berated their informant all the more, but the man knew that disaster was a certainty and secretly excavated a tunnel leading out of the city and made it into a cellar. After midnight on the seventh day sand and earth rained from the air and filled up the city. The man escaped through the tunnel and went east to this country [of Gostana], where he stayed in the city of Bhīmā. No sooner had he arrived than the image also came to that place, where it was worshiped with offerings and no one dared remove it. I heard a prophet say that by the end of Śākyamuni’s Dharma the image will enter the dragon’s palace.

The city of Araurak has now become a big mound. Kings and powerful persons of many countries have attempted to excavate the precious treasure, but each time they have come to the side of the mound a strong, violent gale 945c has arisen, raising a shroud of dust and clouds in which they lose their way.

From the east of the valley of Bhīmā I entered a desert. After going for more than two hundred li, I reached the city of Nina, which is three or four li in circuit, situated in a vast marsh. The marsh is hot and humid and it is difficult to pass through it. This region is overgrown with reeds and wild grass and has no tracks or paths. Because this is the only passageway leading to the city travelers have to go leave and depart by this way. Gostana made this city a frontier station in its eastern region. Going east from there I entered the Great Desert, in which the shifting sand is piled up and scatters with the wind. No trace of wayfarers can remain visible on the sand and travelers often lose their way in the vast wilderness and do not know which direction to go, so they have collected the skeletons of the dead to serve as landmarks. Water and pasture are scarce in the desert and the wind is hot; whenever the hot wind blows people and animals fall into a swoon and become ill. The sound of singing and shouting, or wailing and crying, is sometimes heard but when one looks around to locate the source of the sound no one can tell where it comes from. This phenomenon often causes death, as it is mischief wrought by ghosts and devils.

Going further for more than four hundred li, I reached the old country of Tukhāra, which has been deserted for a long time; all the cities are in ruins. From here proceeding to the east for more than six hundred li, I reached the old country of Calmadana, the land of Jumo. The lofty city walls are still there but there is no trace of human habitation. Continuing my journey toward the northeast for more than one thousand li, I reached the old country of Navāp, namely, the land of Lulan.

The purpose of composing this book has been to describe the mountains and valleys [of the Western Regions], to investigate and collect data on the conditions in different lands, to narrate in detail the upright and variable customs of various countries, and to record the climatic and topographic situations of diverse locales. As circumstances were always changing I laid emphasis on different points at different times. Although it was difficult for me to trace the origin of everything I described by no means did I resort to conjecture or fabrication, but I could write only in a brief manner about what I saw or heard on my journey and keep a record of the spread of the edification of Buddhism. Up to the place where the sun sets all people live under the beneficence of the Emperor, whose ultimate virtue is admired by all within the reach of his moral influence. The entire empire is a great unity and the world is the manifestation of oneness. Am I merely a solitary envoy going in a single carriage, passing through travelers’ rest stations for a distance of ten thousand li?

Eulogy of the Buddha

The Eulogy says: Great is the King of the Dharma, who appeared in the world with his spiritual edification working secretly and his divine Way leading to emptiness. His form and mentality disappeared in as many worlds as there are grains of sand in the Ganges River, and he ceased to rise and fall for kalpas as innumerable as atoms in the world. As his form and mentality have disappeared his birth has no reality of birth, because as he has ceased to rise and fall his extinction has nothing of extinction. Could his birth in Kapilavastu have been a real fact? His passing away between the śāla trees was merely a means of his secret edification. We should know that he manifested his traces in the world at opportune moments in accordance with circumstances to show the effect of his spirituality.

He was born in a Śākya family of the kṣatriya caste. He should have succeeded to the throne of his native country but he devoted his life to religious activities. He gave up the prospect of being a universal monarch of the golden wheel and preferred to rule over the world of the Dharma; from the white 946a curl between his eyebrows he emitted a light to comfort all living beings. His Way prevails in the ten directions and his wisdom comprehends everything. Even though he is from the unknowable universe he provides shelter to those who are in the discernible world. He turned the wheel of the Dharma of the three classifications in the great chiliocosm and expounded his doctrine in one and the same voice to teach the masses. His teachings are classified into eighty-four thousand gates, the essence of which is summed up in the twelve divisions of the scriptures. Therefore, wherever they are under the protection of his teachings the people can move about freely in the field of blessedness, and wherever they are inspired by his morals and discipline all people live in the land of longevity. Glorious are his saintly and sagacious deeds and perfect is his goodness toward human and heavenly beings! He gave up both mobility and immobility in the grove of śāla trees and nullified the conception of coming and going in illusory existence, and no one could succeed him to glorify his doctrine of emptiness.

In order to repay the kindness of the Buddha, Venerable Mahākāśyapa selected a group of arhats to collect the precious Dharma, consisting of the four Āgamas explaining its origin and ramifications and the Tripiṭaka, which gives its essential theories. Although various schools and sects have arisen the essence of the great Dharma remains unchanged. From his birth up to his demise [the Buddha] showed a thousand transformations of his holy traces and manifested propitious omens in ten thousand ways. His limitless spirituality became more and more apparent and his teachings of nonaction were always pure and fresh. All these have been preserved in the scriptures and written down in the records and commentaries. Different opinions became confused and tangled, however, and dissidents spread their own diverse views. The original and fundamental theories are rarely interpreted in the correct way. There are many variant views even in the writings that are based on concrete facts, let alone in the texts that deal with the abstruse and profound right Dharma and that delve into the deep meanings of the abstract and recondite principles, where there are many incomplete points in exposition. This is because previous sages of virtue remained only in the track of translation and brilliant scholars of later times followed the course shown by incomplete texts. Thus the great doctrine was hidden in obscurity and the subtle sayings were missing and unknown to the world.

The teachings of the Dharma have been spreading for many years. Beginning with the Han dynasty and up to the present reign of the Tang, the glorious task of translation has been carried on in a fluent and graceful manner, as splendidly as the conjoined shining of the sun and moon. The abstruse Way was not revealed in its entirety, however, and the true essence was still obscure. This was not because the holy teachings were sometimes active and other times inactive but simply due to untimely royal patronage.

Since the Great Tang has held sway over the empire it has won the confidence of foreign countries. The old rules formulated by the saints have been scrutinized and the outdated codes laid down by former monarchs amended. The teachings of the image period of Buddhism are exuberantly expounded as great instructions. The Way does not exist in vain but its propagation depends on the illustration of virtue. This is why the abstruse doctrines of the three vehicles were buried in oblivion for the last thousand years, and the spiritual efficacy of the Buddha’s ten powers of wisdom were shut out ten thousand li away. It is true that the divine Way has no directional limitations in its spread, but the holy teachings have to depend on circumstances for their appearance.

Eulogy of Xuanzang

The genealogical origin of Dharma master Xuanzang may be traced back to Emperor Shun, who once fished at Leize and later married the two daughters of Emperor Yao at the Gui River, and whose descendants adopted the surname Chen. He is the embodiment of the good omen of superior virtue and contains the perfection of medium harmony. He follows the right Way in accordance with virtue and abides by chastity to rectify his behavior. Because he planted the cause of blessedness in his previous birth he was reborn into this life during a time of prosperity. His conduct surpassed that of the world and he stayed quietly in learning centers to receive the correct instructions taught by former teachers and to admire the virtues of previous philosophers. In the course of wandering in pursuit of his studies he traveled to the regions of Yan and Zhao and visited the states of Lu and Wei. After leaving the district of the Three Rivers at his back he entered the interior of the region of Qin. He proceeded from the three prefectures of Shu and arrived at the state of Wukuai. He approached all learned scholars to ask for instructions and, in the presence of distinguished people, he repeatedly avowed his intention of going abroad to acquire the Dharma. He heard the discussions of various schools and made a study of their propositions, finding that they vied with each other to emphasize their own specific theories and were critical of their rivals’ teachings. This aroused his desire to get to the root of the doctrine of Buddhism and he determined to make a thorough study of the matter.

At a time when the empire within the four seas was in good order and the distant lands in the eight directions were free from trouble, he prepared himself and began the journey, traveling staff in hand, on the morning of the first day of the eighth month in the third year of the Zhenguan reign (629 C.E.). With the Emperor’s prestige he made his way, and under the protection of deities he traveled in solitude. He went out from the strategic passes at the Iron Gate and the Rocky Gate and climbed over the perilous Ice Mountains and Snow Mountains. In the course of time he reached India, where he publicized Chinese civilization in the foreign land and propagated the great teachings in the alien country. He studied Sanskrit texts under the instruction of learned scholars and the dubious points he had in his mind were resolved by reading the books. As regards the profound doctrines, he sought the elucidation of highly talented teachers. He opened his mind to understand the ultimate truth and clarified his spirit to realize the Way. He heard what he had never heard before and acquired what had not yet been acquired. He became a beneficial friend in Buddhist circles and was indeed a master in the gate of the Dharma. From this we may know that his religious fame was prominent and his virtuous deeds were lofty and noble. His store of knowledge was accumulated over three years and his reputation spread ten thousand li. The scholars of India respected him for his great virtue, calling him Basket Full of Scriptures or General of the Dharma. The Hinayana disciples named him Mokṣadeva (“Deity of Emancipation”), while the Mahayana followers called him Mahāyānadeva (“Deity of the Great Vehicle”). These were titles bestowed on him in honor of his virtue, eulogistic epithets used to show respect for his personality.

As regards the abstruse theories of the three classifications of the turning of the wheel of the Dharma and the subtle sayings spoken by the Buddha after three inquiries, he conducted profound research into their roots and acquired a full understanding of the leaves and branches. He promptly became intellectually enlightened and happily clarified his theoretical entanglements. The dubious points he had raised were recorded in certain works. Having made a deep study of the theoretical principles and mastered the lore of metaphysics, with his repute as an erudite scholar spreading widely and having achieved great virtue, he began touring the country, visiting the towns and their vicinities. He left the city of Kuśāgrapura and entered the Deer Park, and after visiting Yaṣṭivana (Yaṣṭi Wood) he rested at Kukkuṭārāma Monastery. He looked around the country of Kapilavastu and had a glimpse of the city of Kuśinagara. The old site of the Buddha’s birthplace had turned into a plain of fertile land and the other sites of secret spirituality lay in ruins in vast wildernesses. When he looked for the divine traces his remembrance of the past glories increased, and he sighed with regret while recalling the Buddha’s teachings with admiration. He was not merely like Jizi, who sang the Ode to Flowering Wheat in sorrow over the fallen dynasty of Yin, nor was he similar to the senior official at the court of Zhou, who composed the Lyric of the Millet Shoots lamenting the collapse of the house of Zhou. He narrated in detail the stories of Śākyamuni Buddha and gave an account of many historical facts of India. He also recounted the manners and customs of various 946c places and wrote down the strange legends. Time passed swiftly and he sojourned in India for several years. Although he was much attached to the Land of Happiness he did not forget to return to his homeland.

He procured one hundred and fifty grains of the Tathāgata’s relic bones; a golden image of the Buddha one foot six inches high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the shadow image in the dragon’s cave at Prāgbodhi Mountain in the country of Magadha; a golden image of the Buddha three feet three inches high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the image of the Buddha in the posture of turning the wheel of the Dharma for the first time at Deer Park in the country of Bārāṇasī; a sandalwood image of the Buddha one foot five inches high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the sandalwood portrait made by King Udayana of the country of Kauśāmbī when he longed to see the Tathāgata; a sandalwood image of the Buddha two feet nine inches high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the image of the Tathāgata descending by a precious stairway from the heavenly palace to earth in the country of Kapitha; a silver image of the Buddha four feet high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the image of the Buddha as he was preaching the Saddharmapuṇḍarīka-sūtra and other scriptures on Vulture Peak in the country of Magadha; a golden image of the Buddha three feet five inches high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the shadow portrait left by the Buddha when he had subdued a venomous dragon in the country of Nagarahāra; a sandalwood image of the Buddha one foot three inches high, including the base and halo, an imitation of the Buddha’s image in the posture of making a tour in the [capital] city of the country of Vaiśālī to edify the inhabitants. [He also brought back] two hundred and twenty four Mahayana scriptures; one hundred and ninety-two Mahayana treatises; fourteen scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Sthavira school; fifteen scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Mahāsāṃghika school; fifteen scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Saṃmitīya school; twenty-two scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Mahī- śāsaka school; seventeen scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Kāśyapīya school; forty-two scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Dharmagupta school; sixty-seven scriptures, disciplinary texts, and treatises of the Sarvāstivāda school; thirty-six texts on hetuvidyā (logic); and thirteen texts on śabdavidyā (Sanskrit grammar): altogether six hundred and fifty-seven books bound in five hundred and twenty bundles.

In order to propagate the supreme teachings he prepared his carriage for the return journey on the perilous way. He came out of the old country of Śrāvastī and left the former suburbs of Gayā. After ascending the dangerous path over the Cong Ling Mountains and traversing the hazardous passage through the desert, he arrived in the capital in the first month of the spring of the nineteenth year (of the Zhenguan reign, 645 C.E.). He had an interview with the Emperor at Luoyang, who ordered him to translate the Sanskrit texts into Chinese. He summoned scholars to work with him to achieve this superior deed through joint effort. The Cloud of the Dharma again cast [its protective] shade and the Sun of Wisdom emitted brilliant light anew. The edification that the Buddha taught at Vulture Peak prevailed in the Chinese capital, and the teachings brought out from the dragon’s palace were expounded in the metropolitan district. This was a time of prosperity in the spread of Buddhism during its image period.

The Master is dexterously conversant with the Sanskrit language, with which he praised the profound Buddhist texts. He reads Sanskrit books as if they were his own compositions and his intonation still echoes in the air. Strictly adhering to the Buddha’s meanings, he does not add any embellishments to his translations. Unknown dialects and previously untranslated Sanskrit terms have been carefully studied and weighed through research and mutual collation with passages from classical Buddhist texts, lest deviations should occur.

A gentleman in official dress approached the Master and said earnestly to him, “India is a country where divine beings and saints assembled and people of virtue were born. Their writing is that of the gods and their language that of the deities, with graceful and well-constructed diction rhythmically pronounced, with one word having many meanings, and one meaning being expressed in different words. There are falling and rising intonations and voiced as well as unvoiced consonants. The translation of the profound Buddhist texts must depend on brilliant scholars and the abstruse essences of the scriptures must be explained by people of great virtue. If deletions are made in a translation or if the words are tuned according to musical notation it is really inappropriate and cannot truly be regarded as good work. The exposition of the profound essences of the scriptures must be easily understandable. So long as it is not contradictory to the original meaning it may be considered well done. Excessive embellishments may render a translation too flowery in style; if [the language] is too simple it will be inelegant. Only when it is done in a plain style without ornamentation and written elegantly without being dull can a work be free of grave blunders and counted as a good translation. Laozi said, ‘Florid sayings are not trustworthy and trustworthy words are not florid.’ Hanzi said, ‘When one’s reason is justifiable one’s speech is straightforward; if one talks in ornate language he is hiding the truth.’ From these maxims we may know that the principle is equally applicable to all things. It is hoped that obscure and unintelligible points may be expurgated for the readers’ benefit and delight. It is very harmful to deviate from the original meanings in order to give place to ornamental verbiage, and adherence to obsolete rules is something to which the Buddha strongly objected.” Both the monks and the laity said unanimously, “Yes! What has been said is really true!”

Formerly, when Confucius was in a position to hear litigation he used to write verdicts jointly with others and never did so by himself alone. In composing his Spring and Autumn Annals he wrote what should be written and deleted what should be cut out, and even such learned literati among his disciples as Ziyou and Zixia could not aid him in writing a word. The Master did his translation in the same way. He is not like Kumārajīva, who translated Buddhist texts at the Garden of Leisure and Repose, allowing his disciples Daosheng, Sengzhao, Daorong, and Sengrui to make deletions as they pleased. How could we add or remove anything of the Buddha’s teachings in an age when the angles of a square are cut off to make it round and when ostentation is discarded and simplicity upheld?

Note by Bianji

I, Bianji, the descendant of a remote progenitor who believed in high culture, cherished the ambition even as a child to lead a life of seclusion. When I had just reached school age I cut my hair, changed into religious robes, and became a disciple of Venerable Daoyue of the Sarvāstivāda school in the great Zongchi Monastery. Although I met a learned teacher my stupidity rendered me as useless as a piece of rotten wood that cannot be carved into shape. I was lucky to have entered the stream of the Dharma but I failed to saturate myself in the dew of learning, and I merely ate my fill all day long and did nothing but face the wall to pass the years. Fortunately the time came for me to take part in this fine gathering of intellectuals where, even with my ability as meager as that of a sparrow, I worked at the end of a long line of brilliant scholars, resembling lofty swans, in writing this Record with my smattering of literary knowledge. I am not a student who is well versed in ancient writings and my compositions are devoid of ornamental phrases. I worked just like one who carves a piece of rotten wood with a blunt burin, 947b toiling as laboriously as a lame person. I respectfully listened to the words, committed them to writing, and put them in proper order. Under the orders of the Secretary of State I compiled the Record as it is presented here. Due to my shallow wisdom and limited ability, I must have made many unintentional omissions and there may be surplus words that should have been deleted. Formerly, when the highly talented historian Sima Zichang wrote his Historical Records, succeeding to his father’s task as grand historian, even he sometimes only mentioned the given name of a person and neglected the second name. As regards places, he often only denoted the name of the county without indicating that of the prefecture. So it is said that even a discreet scholar when working alone on a heavy and complicated task is apt to be neglectful, let alone a person of slow wits and poor capability, such as myself. How could I expect to be perfect and consummate in my work?

The different topographical conditions and social customs, the territorial limits and native products, the temperament and intelligence of different peoples, as well as the cold and warm climates of the four seasons in various regions have been ascertained and described in detail, good or bad, according to the actual facts. As regards the personal names of people of different tribes, they are given together with the names of their countries of origin. Indian customs and teachings are divided into two categories, namely, religious and secular. All these are briefly narrated but a full description can be found in the preceding preface. Such matters as social etiquette, ceremonies, household registration, brave warriors, and religious recluses are not described in detail.

The Buddha contacted people through the employment of supernatural powers and taught them with spiritual admonition, and it is said that his divine Way is deep and mysterious, its principles alien to the human world, and that whatever profundities he exposed in his spiritual admonitions are concerned with things beyond the sky. Brief accounts, with succinct notes, have been given for all the places where the Buddha left his auspicious traces, and for the ruins connected with the good names of former sages. The roads wound and zigzagged and the boundaries of different countries unevenly interlocked with one another. Descriptions of the places of the Master’s journey have been presented in sequence, without editorial arrangement. The different parts of India, irrespective of national boundaries, are indicated at the end of the description of each country, in order to give a rough idea of its whereabouts. Where the word “going” is used in the narration, it means that the Master visited the place in person; the word “reaching” signifies that he merely gathered information [about a place] for his record. It is variously written in a straightforward way, according to facts, or in a mild and roundabout way to put it in a graceful style with well-balanced words, in order to submit a trustworthy record to His Supreme Majesty the Emperor.

In the seventh month in the autumn of the twentieth year (of the Zhenguan reign, 646 C.E.) I completed the compilation, inscribed it on pure white silk, and presented it to the Emperor for his perusal, despite my uncertainty whether it would meet His Majesty’s expectations. However, the risky journey to a distant land was actually undertaken under the prestige of the imperial court and the composition of the topographical record of foreign countries was done with curiosity under His Majesty’s inspiration. It was not only Kuafu who had the strength to chase the sun to the remotest realms; the opening up of the Western Regions can by no means be solely due to the merit of the Marquis of Bowang. Vulture Peak is made known in China through this Record, and Deer Park is rendered as familiar as the outer garden of the imperial palace. It enables one to visualize what happened a thousand years ago and see the sights along the ten thousand-li journey as if one had visited the places in person. All of this has not been heard of since the remote past, nor was it recorded in previous books.

The Emperor’s supreme virtue covers all, and different countries with diverse customs have come to offer allegiance. The tradition of honesty and magnanimity has spread to far regions, even wild and out-of-the-way locales, without exception. This Record may serve as a supplement to the Shanhai jing; let it be published as a chronicle and distributed to the concerned authorities as a general reference.

End of Fascicle XII of The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions

 

Glossary

Abhidharma containing systematic accounts of the teachings of the sutras. piṭaka: The section (Skt. piṭaka, “basket”) of the Buddhist canon (Tripiṭaka)See also Tripiṭaka. absolute truth: The ultimate truth that is beyond words and conceptualization, generally Mahayana teachings insist that both relative truth and absolute truth are equally valid. contrasted with relative truth, the conventional truth that can be put into words. See also Mahayana.

Ānanda: The Buddha’s cousin, close disciple, and personal attendant. He was renowned for his ability to recite all of the Buddha’s sermons from memory.

Anāthapiṇḍika: A wealthy lay follower and donor to the Buddha. Also called Sudatta. arhat: A saint who has freed himself from the bonds of samsara by eliminating all passions. The spiritual ideal of the Hinayana. See also Hinayana.

Avalokiteśvara: The celestial bodhisattva who embodies compassion.

āyatana: associated six objects. Literally, “seat”; the twelve āyatanas refer to the six sense faculties and their bhikkhu/bhikṣuṇī: A Buddhist monk/nun. bodhisattva: A seeker of Buddhahood who gradually perfects the virtues of wisdom and compassion for the sake of liberating all sentient beings from suffering. The spiritual ideal of the Mahayana. See also Mahayana. bodhi tree: The tree under which the Buddha attained enlightenment.

buddha-dharma. See Dharma.

deva: A god.

Dharma: The doctrine taught by the Buddha; Buddhist teachings.

dhātu: sponging consciousnesses. Sphere or realm. The eighteen See also āyatanadhātus are the twelve . āyatanas and the six core doctrine of emptiness (doctrine that all things exist only in dependence on a complex web of causes andśūnyatā): One of the central tenets of Mahayana Buddhism, the conditions and are empty of any permanent essence. eight emancipations: Emancipation from attachment to forms and desires through eight types of meditation. ekayānathe Mahayana as the final and complete Dharma of the Buddha, not merely a part(One Vehicle): Also called buddhayāna (buddha vehicle); a term used to denote or a preliminary stage, as the Hinayana is considered to be by Mahayanists. The

355

Glossary

One Vehicle teaching, which asserts that all beings have the capacity for Buddhahood, is emphatically maintained in the teaching of the sūtra). Lotus Sutra (Saddhar mapuṇdarīkafive desires: Desire for the objects of the five senses. five branches of mundane knowledge: Grammar, mathematics, medicine, logic, and philosophy. five precepts: (1) not to kill, (2) not to steal, (3) not to commit adultery, (4) not to speak falsely, and (5) not to ingest intoxicants. four forms of birth: The four possible ways that living beings may be born: (1) metamorphosis. from a womb, (2) birth from an egg, (3) birth from moisture, and (4) birth through four monastic requisites: The four necessities of a monk: clothing, food, bedding (or a dwelling place), and medicine.

Four Noble Truths: The fundamental Buddhist teaching: (1) Existence is characterized., right view, right thought, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, by suffering, (2) defilements are the cause of suffering, (3) suffering can be ended, the way to end suffering is through following the Buddha’s eightfold noble path,

(4) right mindfulness, and right concentration.

Hinayana (“Small Vehicle”): A derogatory term applied by Mahayanists to various schools of Buddhism that exalt as their ideal the arhat. See also arhat; Mahayana. image period: According to a belief in the gradual decline of the Buddha’s teaching(thousand years), the image, or “counterfeit,” period is the second period, during usually said to begin a thousand years after the Buddha’s death and to last for a

Dharma, but are still better than in the third period of the final Dharma. Which conditions are not as favorable for practice as in the first period of the true

Jambudvīpa: The phenomenal world of human beings; this world. Jātaka stories: Tales of the Buddha’s previous lives as a bodhisattva. kalpa: An immense period of time, an eon.

kaṣāya: A Buddhist monastic robe. Kotilinga extremely large number, usually ten million or sometimes one hundred mil-

li: A Chinese unit of measuring distance, approximately one-third of a mile. mahāsattva (“great being”): A bodhisattva of great wisdom and compassion.

Mahayana (“Great Vehicle”): Teachings on the attainment of enlightenment or Buddhahood See also in which the ideal is the bodhisattva, in contrast to the Hinayana ideal of athwartship. bodhisattva; Hinayana.

Maitreya: The future buddha, presently residing in Tuṣita Heaven.

Māra: The personification of evil; the tempter who exploits the human tendency to be attached to worldly life rather than follow the Buddhist path of liberation.

Nāgārjuna (ca. 150–250 Mahayana Buddhist schools. His works emphasized the teachings on emptiness. C.E.): A scholar and monk acknowledged as a founder in the

Glossary

nirvana: The state in which passions are extinguished and the highest wisdom attained; the final goal of Buddhist practice. prajñā: Transcendent wisdom; knowledge of absolute truth. See also absolute truth. Pratyekabuddha awakening by him- or herself through direct perception of twelvefold causation, and who does not teach others. (“solitary buddha”): A self-enlightened buddha, one who has realized See also twelvefold causation. rākṣasa/rākṣasī: A type of ogre (male/female).

risk: A sage or seer.

śāla: A type of tree under which the Buddha passed into final nirvana (pari nirvāṇa). samādhi: A state of deep meditative absorption.

Śāriputra: One of the Buddha’s original disciples, called “foremost of the wise.” śarīra:or hair. Relic(s) of the physical body of the Buddha, such as bones, teeth, fingernails, Sarvāstivāda: An early school of Buddhism. śāstra: A Buddhist treatise; a scholastic work, sometimes a commentary on a sutra. six supernatural powers: (1) supernatural vision, (2) supernatural hearing, (3) the power others, (5) the power to perform miracles, such as appearing anywhere at will, and to know others’ thoughts, (4) the power to know one’s own past lives and those of the power to eradicate defilements.

(6)

skandhaof matter or form, feeling, perception, volition, and consciousness’s (“aggregates”). The five elements that form the personality or self, consisting śramaṇa: A Buddhist monk. śrāmaṇera: A male novice. śrāvakaheard him teach directly; the term later came to refer to followers of the Hinayana. See also(“hearer”): Originally a term for the earliest followers of the Buddha, those who Hinayana. stupa: A tope or reliquary monument; a large hemispherical structure in which relics are enshrined. See also śarīra. sutra: A discourse of the Buddha. Capitalized, it constitutes one of the three “baskets”(piṭakas) of the Buddhist teachings. See also Tripiṭaka.

Tathāgata (“Thus-come” or “Thus-gone”): An epithet for a buddha.

ten good deeds: (1) not to kill, (2) not to steal, (3) not to engage in illicit sexual practices, among people, (7) not to engage in idle talk, (8) not to be greedy, (9) not to be angry,(4) not to lie, (5) not to utter harsh words, (6) not to utter words that cause enmity and (10) not to have wrong views. ten powers: The ten powers of a buddha, which give complete knowledge of (1) right forms of meditation; (4) the powers and faculties of all sentient beings; (5) the results of various methods of practice; (8) the transmigratory states of all sentient and wrong; (2) the past, present, and future karma of all sentient beings; (3) all desires, or moral direction, of every being; (6) the different levels of existence; (7)

Translator’s Introduction

beings and the courses of karma they follow; (9) the past lives of all sentient beings and nirvana; and (10) the destruction of all evil passions.

three evil paths: The three lower realms of existence in which sentient beings transmigrate as retribution for evil deeds: (1) hell, (2) the realm of hungry ghosts, and (3) the realm of animals.

three insights: (1) Insight into the conditions of self and others in previous lives, (2)to overcome all passions. Divine insight into future conditions, and (3) nirvanic insight into present suffering three realms: The three worlds in which sentient beings transmigrate: (1) the world of desire, (2) the world of pure form, and (3) the world of non-form. three vehicles: The three Buddhist paths of practice, the two vehicles of pratyekabuddha See also bodhisattva; Hinayana; Mahayana; s in the Hinayana, and the bodhisattva vehicle of the Mahayana. pratyekabuddha; śrāvaka. śrāvakas and Tripitakan (“three baskets”): the Buddhist canon, comprised of Sutra (discourses), Vinaya(monastic code), and Abhidharma (scholastic treatises). See also Abhi dharma pitaya; sutra; Vinaya.

Triple Gem: Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha (the Buddhist community).

twelvefold causation (sourness, (4) name and form, (5) six senses, (6) contact, (7) feeling, (8) attachment,(9)that comprise the human experience: (1) ignorance, (2) volitional activity, (3) con- clinging, (10) existence, (11) birth/rebirth, and (12) old age and death. pratītyasamutpāda): the twelvefold cycle of causes and conditions upāsaka/upāsikā: Male or female lay devotees.

Vasubandhu (fl. ca. 300–400 expounder of the Abhidharma. C.E.): A Buddhist scholar and monk who was an important vihāra: A hall, or monastic dwelling place.

Vinaya: Disciplinary rules for Buddhist monks; one of the three parts of the Tripiṭaka. See also Tripiṭaka. yakṣa: A kind of demon.

BDK English Tripiṭaka(First Series)

Abbreviations

                                                                                                                                                                           Eng.:Skt.:Ch.:Jp.:    Japanese    Published title   Chinese   Sanskrit

Title                                                                                                   Taishō No.

Skt.   DīrghāgamaEng.  Ch.   Chang ahan jing (         (Volume I, 2015)The Canonical Book of the Buddha’s Lengthy Discourses長阿含經)                                                                   1

Ch.   Zhong ahan jing (Skt.   MadhyamāgamaEng.           (Volume I, 2013)The Madhyama Āgama (Middle-length Discourses),中阿含經)                                                                  26

Ch.   Dasheng bensheng xindi guan jing (大乘本生心地觀經)                     159

Ch.   Fo suoxing zan (Skt.   BuddhacaritaEng.  Buddhacarita: In Praise of Buddha’s Acts佛所行讃)                                                                 (2009)                                                            192

Ch.   Zabao zang jing (Eng.  The Storehouse of Sundry Valuables雜寶藏經)                                                                 (1994)      203 Ch.   Faju piyu jing (Eng.  The Scriptural Text: Verses of the Doctrine, with Parables法句譬喩經)                                                                (1999)      211

Skt.   Aṣṭasāhasrikā-prajñāpāramitā-sutraCh.   Xiaopin banruo boluomi jing (小品般若波羅蜜經)                              227 Skt.   Vajracchedikā-prajñāpāramitā-sutraCh.   Jingang banruo boluomi jing (金剛般若波羅蜜經)                              235

389

Ch.   Daluo jingang bukong zhenshi sanmoye jing                                     243Skt.   Adhyardhaśatikā-prajñāpāramitā-sutra         (The Sutra of the Vow of Fulfilling the Great Perpetual大樂金剛不空眞實三麼耶經)

Eng.           Enjoyment and Benefiting All Sentient Beings Without(in Esoteric Texts, 2015)

         Exception

Ch.   Renwang banruo boluomi jing (Skt.   *Kāruṇikārājā-prajñāpāramitā-sutra仁王般若波羅蜜經)                           245

Skt.   Prajñāpāramitāhṛdaya-sutraCh.   Banruo boluomiduo xin jing (般若波羅蜜多心經)                               251

Skt.   Saddharmapuṇḍarīka-sutraCh.   Miaofa lianhua jing (Eng.  The Lotus Sutra (Revised Second Edition, 妙法蓮華經)                                                       2007)                                                             262

Ch.   Wuliangyi jing (Eng.  The Infinite Meanings Sutra無量義經)                                                                   (in Tiantai Lotus Texts, 2013)                      276

Eng.  Ch.   Guan Puxian pusa xingfa jing (         Goodness         through Contemplation of the Bodhisattva All-embracingThe Sutra Expounded by the Buddha on Practice of the Way(in Tiantai Lotus Texts,觀普賢菩薩行法經2013)                      )                             277

Skt.   Avataṃsaka-sutraCh.   Dafangguang fo huayan jing (大方廣佛華嚴經)                                  279

Ch.   Shengman shizihou yisheng defang bianfang guang jing                   353Skt.   Śrīmālādevīsiṃhanāda-sutra         (The Sutra of Queen Śrīmālā of the Lion’s Roar勝鬘師子吼一乘大方便方廣經)       (2004)

Eng. 

Ch.   Wuliangshou jing (Skt.   SukhāvatīvyūhaThe Larger Sutra on Amitāyus無量壽經)                                                              (in The Three Pure Land Sutras,                 360

Eng.           Revised Second Edition, 2003)

Ch.   Guan wuliangshou fo jing (Skt.   *Amitāyurdhyāna-sutraThe Sutra on Contemplation of AmitāyusThe Three Pure Land Sutras,觀無量壽佛經Revised Second Edition, 2003))                                          365 Eng.           (in

Eng.  Skt.   SukhāvatīvyūhaCh.   Amituo jing (         Revised Second Edition, 2003)The Smaller Sutra on Amitāyus阿彌陀經)                                                                       (in The Three Pure Land Sutras,                 366

Ch.   Da banniepan jing (Skt.   Mahāparinirvana-sutraEng.  The Nirvana Sutra (大般涅槃經Volume I, 2013) )                                                          374

Ch.   Fochuibo niepan lüeshuo jiaojie jing (Eng.  The Bequeathed Teaching Sutra (in Apocryphal Scriptures,佛垂般涅槃略説教誡經2005))           389 Skt.   *Kṣitigarbhapraṇidhāna-sutraCh.   Dizang pusa benyuan jing (地藏菩薩本願經)                                      412

Ch.   Banzhou sanmei jing (Skt.   Pratyutpanna-buddhasammukhāvasthita-samādhi-sutraEng.  The Pratyutpanna Samādhi Sutra般舟三昧經)(1998)                                                     418

Skt.   Bhaiṣajyaguru-vaiḍūrya-prabhāsa-pūrvapraṇidhāna-viśeṣavistaraCh.   Yaoshi liuli guang rulai benyuan gongde jing                                     450         (藥師琉璃光如來本願功徳經)

Ch.   Mile xiasheng chengfo jing (Skt.   *MaitreyavyākaraṇaEng.           and His EnlightenmentThe Sutra that Expounds the Descent of Maitreya Buddha(2015)彌勒下生成佛經)                                    454

Skt.   *MañjuśrīparipṛcchāCh.   Wenshushili wen jing (Eng.  The Sutra of Mañjuśrī’s Questions文殊師利問經(2015))                                                 468

Skt.   Vimalakīrtinirdeśa-sutraEng.  Ch.   Weimojie suoshuo jing (The Vimalakīrti Sutra (2004)維摩詰所説經)                                               475

Ch.   Yueshangnü jing (Skt.   Candrottarādārikā-paripṛcchā月上女經)                                                                480

Ch.   Zuochan sanmei jing (Eng.  The Sutra on the Concentration of Sitting Meditation坐禪三昧經)                                                     (2009)                      614

Ch.   Damoduoluo chan jing (達磨多羅禪經)                                               618 Skt.   Samādhirāja-candrapradīpa-sutraCh.   Yuedeng sanmei jing (月燈三昧經)                                                     639 Skt.   Śūraṅgamasamādhi-sutraCh.   Shoulengyan sanmei jing (Eng.  The Śūraṅgama Samādhi Sutra首楞嚴三昧經(1998) )                                           642

Ch.   Jinguang ming zuishengwang jing (Skt.   Suvarṇaprabhāsa-sutra 金光明最勝王經)                         665 Skt.   Laṅkāvatāra-sutraCh.   Dasheng rulengqie jing (大乘入楞伽經)                                              672

Ch.   Jie shenmi jing (Skt.   Saṃdhinirmocana-sutraEng.  The Scripture on the Explication of Underlying Meaning解深密經)                                                                  (2000)                                                            676

Eng.  Skt.   *Ullambana-sutraCh.   Yulanpen jing (The Ullambana Sutra盂蘭盆經(in ) Apocryphal Scriptures,                                                                    2005)                                                             685

Ch.   Sishierzhang jing (Eng.  The Sutra of Forty-two Sections四十二章經)                                                           (in Apocryphal Scriptures, 2005)                784

Eng.  Ch.   Dafangguang yuanjue xiuduoluo liaoyi jing                                       842         (The Sutra of Perfect Enlightenment大方廣圓覺修多羅了義經Apocryphal Scriptures,) 2005)

         (in

Eng.  Ch.   Da Biluzhena chengfo shenbian jiachi jing                                         848Skt.   Mahāvairocanābhisambodhi-vikurvitādhiṣṭhāna-vaipulyasūtrendra-         rājanāma-dharmaparyāya         (The Vairocanābhisaṃbodhi Sutra大毘盧遮那成佛神變加持經)                                              (2005)

Ch.   Jinggangding yiqie rulai zhenshi she dasheng xianzheng dajiaoSkt.   Sarvatathāgata-tattvasaṃgraha-mahāyānābhisamaya-mahākalparāja         wang jing (The Adamantine Pinnacle Sutra金剛頂一切如來眞實攝大乘現證大教王經(in Two Esoteric Sutras,)                        2001)                                                             865

Eng. 

Ch.   Suxidi jieluo jing (Skt.   Susiddhikara-mahātantra-sādhanopāyika-paṭalaEng.  The Susiddhikara Sutra蘇悉地羯囉經(in Two Esoteric Sutras,)                                                        2001)        893 Eng.  Skt.   *Mātaṅgī-sutraCh.   Modengqie jing (The Mātaṅga Sutra摩登伽經(in Esoteric Texts,)                                                               2015)        1300

Skt.   *Mahāsāṃghika-vinayaCh.   Mohe sengqi lü (摩訶僧祇律)                                                            1425 Ch.   Sifen lü (Skt.   *Dharmaguptaka-vinaya四分律)                                                                                1428

Pāli   SamantapāsādikāCh.   Shanjianlü piposha (善見律毘婆沙)                                                   1462 Skt.   *Brahmajāla-sutraCh.   Fanwang jing (梵網經)                                                                      1484

Ch.   Youposaijie jing (Skt.   Upāsakaśīla-sutraEng.  The Sutra on Upāsaka Precepts優婆塞戒經)                                                           (1994)                                                          1488

Skt.   Saddharmapuṇḍarīka-upadeśaEng.  Ch.   Miaofa lianhua jing youbotishe (The Commentary on the Lotus Sutra妙法蓮華經憂波提舍(in Tiantai Lotus Texts,)                     2013)                                                           1519

Skt.   *Daśabhūmika-vibhāṣāCh.   Shizha biposha lun (十住毘婆沙論)                                                   1521

Ch.   Fodijing lun (

Eng.  Skt.   *Buddhabhūmisutra-śāstraThe Interpretation of the Buddha Land佛地經論)                                                                     (2002)                                                          1530

Ch.   Apidamojushe lun (Skt.   Abhidharmakośa-bhāṣya阿毘達磨倶舍論)                                                1558

Skt.   Madhyamaka-śāstraCh.   Zhonglun (中論)                                                                                1564

Skt.   Yogācārabhūmi-śāstraCh.   Yüqie shidilun (瑜伽師地論)                                                             1579

Ch.   Cheng weishi lun (Eng.           (in Demonstration of Consciousness OnlyThree Texts on Consciousness Only,成唯識論)                                                             1999)        1585 Ch.   Weishi sanshilun song (Skt.   TriṃśikāEng.           (in The Thirty Verses on Consciousness OnlyThree Texts on Consciousness Only,唯識三十論頌)                                              1999)        1586

Eng.  Skt.   ViṃśatikāCh.   Weishi ershi lun (         (in The Treatise in Twenty Verses on Consciousness OnlyThree Texts on Consciousness Only,唯識二十論)                                                           1999)                                                           1590

Skt.   MahāyānasaṃgrahaEng.  Ch.   She dasheng lun (The Summary of the Great Vehicle攝大乘論)                                                              (Revised Second Edition, 2003) 1593

Ch.   Bian zhongbian lun (Skt.   Madhyāntavibhāga 辯中邊論)                                                         1600 Ch.   Dasheng zhuangyanjing lun (Skt.   Mahāyānasūtrālaṃkāra 大乘莊嚴經論)                                     1604

Skt.   KarmasiddhiprakaraṇaCh.   Dasheng chengye lun (大乘成業論)                                                   1609

Skt.   Ratnagotravibhāga-mahāyānottaratantra-śāstraCh.   Jiujing yisheng baoxing lun (究竟一乘寳性論)                                  1611

Ch.   Yinming ruzheng Skt.   Nyāyapraveśa                                          li lun (因明入正理論)                                            1630

Ch.   Dasheng ji pusa xue lun (Skt.   Śikṣāsamuccaya                            大乘集菩薩學論)                                       1636

Skt.   VajrasūcīCh.   Jingangzhen lun (金剛針論)                                                               1642

Ch.   Zhang suozhi lun (Eng.  The Treatise on the Elucidation of the Knowable彰所知論)                                                             (2004) 1645 Ch.   Putixing jing (Skt.   Bodhicaryāvatāra菩提行經)                                                                    1662

Eng.  Ch.   Jingangding yuqie zhongfa anouduoluo sanmiao sanputi xin lun    1665         (The Bodhicitta Śāstra金剛頂瑜伽中發阿耨多羅三藐三菩提心論(in Esoteric Texts, 2015))

Title                                                                                                   Taishō No.

Eng.  Ch.   Dasheng qixin lun (Skt.   *Mahāyānaśraddhotpāda-śāstraThe Awakening of Faith大乘起信論(2005))                                                        1666

Ch.   Shimoheyan lun (釋摩訶衍論)                                                           1668

Ch.   Naxian biqiu jing (Pāli   Milindapañhā 那先比丘經)                                                         1670

Eng.  Ch.   Banruo boluomiduo xin jing yuzan (         (A Comprehensive Commentary on the Heart SutraPrajñāpāramitā-hṛdaya-sutra) (2001)般若波羅蜜多心經幽賛)           1710

Ch.   Miaofalianhua jing xuanyi (妙法蓮華經玄義)                                   1716 Ch.   Guan wuliangshou fo jing shu (觀無量壽佛經疏)                              1753 Ch.   Sanlun xuanyi (三論玄義)                                                                  1852 Ch.   Dasheng xuan lun (大乘玄論)                                                            1853 Ch.   Zhao lun (肇論)                                                                                  1858

Ch.   Huayan yisheng jiaoyi fenqi zhang (華嚴一乘教義分齊章)               1866

Ch.   Yuanren lun (原人論)                                                                         1886 Ch.   Mohe zhiguan (摩訶止觀)                                                                  1911 Ch.   Xiuxi zhiguan zuochan fayao (修習止觀坐禪法要)                           1915

Ch.   Tiantai sijiao yi (Eng.           (A Guide to the Tiantai Fourfold Teachingsin Tiantai Lotus Texts,天台四教儀2013))                                                            1931

Ch.   Guoqing bai lu (國清百録)                                                                 1934

Eng.  Ch.   Zhenzhou Linji Huizhao chanshi wulu (The Recorded Sayings of Linji (in Three Chan Classics,鎭州臨濟慧照禪師語録1999))     1985

Ch.   Foguo Yuanwu chanshi biyan lu (Eng.  The Blue Cliff Record (1998) 佛果圜悟禪師碧巖録)                   2003

Ch.   Wumen guan (Eng.  Wumen’s Gate無門關(in Three Chan Classics,)                                                                       1999)                                                           2005

Eng.  Ch.   Liuzu dashi fabao tan jing (The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch六祖大師法寶壇經(2000))                                2008 Eng.  Ch.   Xinxin ming (The Faith-Mind Maxim信心銘)                                                                        (in Three Chan Classics, 1999) 2010

Ch.   Huangboshan Duanji chanshi chuanxin fayao                             2012AEng.           (Essentials of the Transmission of Mind黄檗山斷際禪師傳心法要)                                                                        (in Zen Texts, 2005)

Ch.   Yongjia Zhengdao ge (永嘉證道歌)                                                   2014

Ch.   Chixiu Baizhang qinggui (Eng.  The Baizhang Zen Monastic Regulations勅修百丈清規)(2007)                                         2025

Eng.  Skt.   SamayabhedoparacanacakraCh.   Yibuzonglun lun (The Cycle of the Formation of the Schismatic Doctrines異部宗輪論)                                                          (2004)                                                          2031

Ch.   Ayuwang jing (Skt.   AśokāvadānaEng.  The Biographical Scripture of King Aśoka阿育王經)                                                                  (1993)                                                          2043

Ch.   Maming pusa zhuan (Eng.           (in The Life of Aśvaghoṣa BodhisattvaLives of Great Monks and Nuns,馬鳴菩薩傳)                                                     2002)                                                           2046

Eng.  Ch.   Longshu pusa zhuan (         (in The Life of Nāgārjuna BodhisattvaLives of Great Monks and Nuns,龍樹菩薩傳)                                                    2002)                                                           2047

Ch.   Posoupandou fashi zhuan (Eng.           (in Biography of Dharma Master VasubandhuLives of Great Monks and Nuns,婆藪槃豆法師傳2002) )                                     2049

Eng.  Ch.   Datang Daciensi Zanzang fashi zhuan (         Monastery of the Great Tang DynastyA Biography of the Tripiṭaka Master of the Great Ci’en(1995)大唐大慈恩寺三藏法師傳)   2053

Ch.   Gaoseng zhuan (高僧傳)                                                                    2059

Eng.  Ch.   Biqiuni zhuan (         (in Biographies of Buddhist NunsLives of Great Monks and Nuns,比丘尼傳)                                                                  2002)                                                           2063

Ch.   Gaoseng Faxian zhuan (Eng.           (in The Journey of the Eminent Monk FaxianLives of Great Monks and Nuns,高僧法顯傳)2002)                                                 2085 Ch.   Datang xiyu ji (Eng.  The Great Tang Dynasty Record of the Western Regions大唐西域記)                                                              (1996)              2087

Ch.   Youfangjichao: Tangdaheshangdongzheng zhuan                      2089-(7)         (遊方記抄: 唐大和上東征傳)

Ch.   Hongming ji (Eng.           of Buddhism The Collection for the Propagation and Clarification(Volume I, 弘明集)                                                                        2015)                                                           2102

Ch.   Fayuan zhulin (法苑珠林)                                                                  2122

Ch.   Nanhai jigui neifa zhuan (Eng.  Buddhist Monastic Traditions of Southern Asia南海寄歸内法傳)                                      (2000)                                                          2125

Ch.   Fanyu zaming (梵語雑名)                                                                  2135

Jp.     Shōmangyō gisho (Eng.  Prince Shōtoku’s Commentary on the Śrīmālā Sutra勝鬘經義疏)                                                        (2011)                                                          2185

Jp.     Yuimakyō gisho (Eng.  The Expository Commentary on the Vimalakīrti Sutra維摩經義疏)                                                           (2012)                        &nbs