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76
iii.
SADDHARMA-PUNDARÎKA.

lives. Nay, besides recovering their very body, O Lord, they have received all those toys. If that man, O Lord, had given no single cart, even then he would not have been a speaker of falsehood, for he had previously been meditating on saving the little boys from a great mass of pain by some able device. Even in this case, O Lord, the man would not have been guilty of falsehood, and far less now that he, considering his having plenty of treasures and prompted by no other motive but the love of his children, gives to all, to coax[1] them, vehicles of one kind, and those the greatest vehicles. That man, Lord, is not guilty of falsehood.

The venerable Sâriputra having thus spoken, the Lord said to him: Very well, very well, Sâriputra, quite so; it is even as thou sayest. So, too, Sâriputra, the Tathâgata, &c, is free from all dangers, wholly exempt from all misfortune, despondency, calamity, pain, grief, the thick enveloping dark mists of ignorance. He, the Tathâgata, endowed with Buddha-knowledge, forces, absence of hesitation, uncommon properties, and mighty by magical power, is the father of the world[2], who has reached the highest perfection in the knowledge of skilful means, who is most merciful, long-suffering, benevolent, compassionate. He appears in this triple


  1. Slâghamâna
  2. Here the Buddha is represented as a wise and benevolent father; he is the heavenly father, Brahma. As such he was represented as sitting on a 'lotus seat.' How common this representation was in India, at least in the sixth century of our era, appears from Varâha-Mihira's Brihat-Samhitâ, chap. 58, 44, where the following rule is laid down for the Buddha idols: 'Buddha shall be (represented) sitting on a lotus seat, like the father of the world.'