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Anguttara Nikāya - The Numerical Discourses

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3: The Book of the Threes

VIII. Ānanda — AN 3.80: Lesser

1Then Venerable Ānanda went up to the Buddha, bowed, sat down to one side, and said to him:

“Sir, I have heard and learned this in the presence of the Buddha: ‘Ānanda, the Buddha Sikhi had a disciple called Abhibhū. Standing in the Brahmā realm, he could make his voice heard throughout the galaxy.’ I wonder how far a Blessed One, a perfected one, a fully awakened Buddha can make their voice heard?”

“He was a disciple, Ānanda. Realized Ones are immeasurable.”


2For a second time …


3For a third time, Ānanda said to the Buddha: “… I wonder how far a Blessed One, a perfected one, a fully awakened Buddha can make their voice heard?”

“Ānanda, have you heard of a thousandfold lesser world system, a galaxy?”


“Now is the time, Blessed One! Now is the time, Holy One! Let the Buddha speak. The mendicants will listen and remember it.”

“Well then, Ānanda, listen and pay close attention, I will speak.”

“Yes, sir,” Ānanda replied. The Buddha said this:


4“Ānanda, a galaxy extends a thousand times as far as the moon and sun revolve and the shining ones light up the quarters. In that galaxy there are a thousand moons, a thousand suns, a thousand Sinerus king of mountains, a thousand Indias, a thousand Western Continents, a thousand Northern Continents, a thousand Eastern Continents, four thousand oceans, four thousand Great Kings, a thousand realms of the Gods of the Four Great Kings, a thousand realms of the Gods of the Thirty-Three, of the Gods of Yama, of the Joyful Gods, of the Gods who Love to Create, of the Gods who Control the Creations of Others, and a thousand Brahmā realms. This is called a thousandfold lesser world system, a ‘galaxy’.

5A world system that extends for a thousand galaxies is called a millionfold middling world system, a ‘galactic cluster’.

6A world system that extends for a thousand galactic clusters is called a billionfold great world system, a ‘galactic supercluster’.

7If he wished, Ānanda, a Realized One could make his voice heard throughout a galactic supercluster, or as far as he wants.”


8“But how would the Buddha make his voice heard so far?”

“First, Ānanda, a Realized One would fill the galactic supercluster with light. When sentient beings saw the light, the Realized One would project his call so that they’d hear the sound. That’s how a Realized One could make his voice heard throughout a galactic supercluster, or as far as he wants.”


9When he said this, Venerable Ānanda said to Venerable Udāyī: “I’m so fortunate, so very fortunate, to have a teacher with such power and might!”

When he said this, Venerable Udāyī said to Venerable Ānanda: “What is it to you, Reverend Ānanda, if your teacher has such power and might?”

When he said this, the Buddha said to Venerable Udāyī: “Not so, Udāyī, not so! If Ānanda were to die while still not free of greed, he would rule as king of the gods for seven lifetimes, and as king of all India for seven lifetimes, because of the confidence of his heart. However, Ānanda will be extinguished in the present life.”

1Atha kho āyasmā ānando yena bhagavā tenupasankami; upasankamitvā bhagavantaṁ abhivādetvā ekamantaṁ nisīdi. Ekamantaṁ nisinno kho āyasmā ānando bhagavantaṁ etadavoca: 

"sammukhā metaṁ, bhante, bhagavato sutaṁ sammukhā paṭiggahitaṁ:  ‘bhagavato, ānanda, sikhissa abhibhū nāma sāvako brahmaloke ṭhito sahassilokadhātuṁ sarena viññāpesī’ti. Bhagavā pana, bhante, arahaṁ sammāsambuddho kīvatakaṁ pahoti sarena viññāpetun"ti?

"Sāvako so, ānanda, appameyyā tathāgatā"ti.


2Dutiyampi kho āyasmā ānando bhagavantaṁ etadavoca:  "sammukhā metaṁ, bhante, bhagavato sutaṁ sammukhā paṭiggahitaṁ:  ‘bhagavato, ānanda, sikhissa abhibhū nāma sāvako brahmaloke ṭhito sahassilokadhātuṁ sarena viññāpesī’ti. Bhagavā pana, bhante, arahaṁ sammāsambuddho kīvatakaṁ pahoti sarena viññāpetun"ti?

"Sāvako so, ānanda, appameyyā tathāgatā"ti.


3Tatiyampi kho āyasmā ānando bhagavantaṁ etadavoca:  "sammukhā metaṁ, bhante, bhagavato sutaṁ sammukhā paṭiggahitaṁ:  ‘bhagavato, ānanda, sikhissa abhibhū nāma sāvako brahmaloke ṭhito sahassilokadhātuṁ sarena viññāpesī’ti. Bhagavā pana, bhante, arahaṁ sammāsambuddho kīvatakaṁ pahoti sarena viññāpetun"ti?

"Sutā te, ānanda, sahassī cūḷanikā lokadhātū"ti?


"Etassa, bhagavā, kālo; etassa, sugata, kālo, yaṁ bhagavā bhāseyya. Bhagavato sutvā bhikkhū dhāressantī"ti.

"Tenahānanda, suṇāhi sādhukaṁ manasi karohi, bhāsissāmī"ti.

"Evaṁ, bhante"ti kho āyasmā ānando bhagavato paccassosi. Bhagavā etadavoca: 


4"Yāvatā, ānanda, candimasūriyā pariharanti, disā bhanti virocanā, tāva sahassadhā loko. Tasmiṁ sahassadhā loke sahassaṁ candānaṁ, sahassaṁ sūriyānaṁ, sahassaṁ sinerupabbatarājānaṁ, sahassaṁ jambudīpānaṁ, sahassaṁ aparagoyānānaṁ, sahassaṁ uttarakurūnaṁ, sahassaṁ pubbavidehānaṁ, cattāri mahāsamuddasahassāni, cattāri mahārājasahassāni, sahassaṁ cātumahārājikānaṁ, sahassaṁ tāvatiṁsānaṁ, sahassaṁ yāmānaṁ, sahassaṁ tusitānaṁ, sahassaṁ nimmānaratīnaṁ, sahassaṁ paranimmita­vasavattīnaṁ, sahassaṁ brahmalokānaṁ – ayaṁ vuccatānanda, sahassī cūḷanikā lokadhātu.

5Yāvatānanda, sahassī cūḷanikā lokadhātu tāva sahassadhā loko. Ayaṁ vuccatānanda, dvisahassī majjhimikā lokadhātu.

6Yāvatānanda, dvisahassī majjhimikā lokadhātu tāva sahassadhā loko. Ayaṁ vuccatānanda, tisahassī mahāsahassī lokadhātu.

7Ākankhamāno, ānanda, tathāgato tisahassimahāsahassilokadhātuṁ sarena viññāpeyya, yāvatā pana ākankheyyā"ti.


8"Yathā kathaṁ pana, bhante, bhagavā tisahassimahāsahassilokadhātuṁ sarena viññāpeyya, yāvatā pana ākankheyyā"ti?

"Idhānanda, tathāgato tisahassimahāsahassilokadhātuṁ obhāsena phareyya. Yadā te sattā taṁ ālokaṁ sañjāneyyuṁ, atha tathāgato ghosaṁ kareyya saddamanussāveyya. Evaṁ kho, ānanda, tathāgato tisahassimahāsahassilokadhātuṁ sarena viññāpeyya, yāvatā pana ākankheyyā"ti.


9Evaṁ vutte, āyasmā ānando āyasmantaṁ udāyiṁ etadavoca:  "lābhā vata me, suladdhaṁ vata me, yassa me satthā evaṁmahiddhiko evaṁmahānubhāvo"ti.

Evaṁ vutte, āyasmā udāyī āyasmantaṁ ānandaṁ etadavoca:  "Kiṁ tuyhettha, āvuso ānanda, yadi te satthā evaṁmahiddhiko evaṁmahānubhāvo"ti?

Evaṁ vutte, bhagavā āyasmantaṁ udāyiṁ etadavoca:  "mā hevaṁ, udāyi, mā hevaṁ, udāyi. Sace, udāyi, ānando avītarāgo kālaṁ kareyya, tena cittappasādena sattakkhattuṁ devesu devarajjaṁ kāreyya, sattakkhattuṁ imasmiṁyeva jambudīpe mahārajjaṁ kāreyya. Api ca, udāyi, ānando diṭṭheva dhamme pari­nibbāyissatī"ti.

Dasamaṁ.

Ānandavaggo tatiyo.

10Channo ājīvako sakko,
nigaṇṭho ca nivesako;
Duve bhavā sīlabbataṁ,
gandhajātañca cūḷanīti.