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xi.
SADDHARMA-PUNDARÎKA.

15. Here on this seat you see me, together with the Lord next to me, in the middle of the Sttipa; likewise many other Lords of the world here present, in many hundreds of fields.

16. Ye, young men of good family, mind, for mercy's sake towards all beings, that it is a very difficult task to which the Chief urges you.

17. One might expound many thousands of Sûtras, like to the sands of the Ganges, without overmuch difficulty.

18. One who after grasping the Sumeru in the fist were to hurl it a distance of ko/is of fields, would do nothing very difficult.

19. Nor would it be so very difficult if one could shake this whole universe by the thumb to hurl it a distance of ko/is of fields.

20. Nor would one who, after taking stand on the limit of the existing world, were to expound the law and thousands of other Sfitras, do something so very difficult.

21. But to keep and preach this Sûtra in the dreadful period succeeding the extinction of the Chief of the world, that is difficult[1].

22. To throw down the totality of ether-element after compressing it in one fist, and to leave it behind after having thrown it away, is not difficult.

23. But to copy a Stitra like this in the period after my extinction, that is difficult[2].

24. To collect the whole earth-element at a nail's


  1. Yet the stars perform that extremely difficult task apparently with the greatest ease.
  2. Nay, it is impossible, if one does not avail oneself of a lamp or other artificial light.