Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Indian kings (UKI:91-104)

Indian Kings: The Burmese Chronicle: Book I: 91-105

91. How starting from the Azatathat king there was a series (a line) of five Abathat kings.

We will now speak of the king named Azatathat. a person with whom close friendship was not possible.... he was imbued with the three well-springs of merit, the absence of greed, the absence of anger, and the absence of ignorance. Because he happened to associate with Dewadat, someone with whom close friendship was not possible, he sinned against his father who was without sin while of all the possible places (he would be sent to) (he would be consigned to) (would go to) Awisi, the lowest rung of hell because of his merit, he would be consigned to the Lohakomi rung of hell for 60,000 years and when he was freed (let loose from this place) he uttered the phrase "Wizatawi" which means "I have overcome all impediments" and became a Pissaka Buddha, a lesser Buddha who doesn't preach during his life. (Note: This method is called "Wizitatheita" in Pali and is presented in the Thilakan Atakata Thamanya Phala Thot (Sutta) of the Theravadan Buddhist canon.) Udayabarra enjoyed the luxury and wealth of a king for 16 years and in the year and in the year 40 Anuyodda murdered both his father Udabarra and then became king. His son Bonna in turn killed him and both of them together enjoyed the luxurious life of a king for 10 years. In the year 48 the son Nagadatha killed the father Bonna and became king. Nagadatha enjoyed the luxurious life of a king for 24 years and in the year 72 the series of five base and despicable kings who murdered their fathers came to an end (the line of kings was severed) and the people (subjects) of the kingdom gathered together and placed the great minister Thuthunaga on the throne (made him king).

92. The story of Thuthunaga.

The story of Thuthunaga runs as follows. In the kingdom of Weithali all the Lissawi kings gathered together and talked:

"Our kingdoms being perfect in the eight necessary characteristics of a town (UKI:52) and the four foods necessary for a town (UKI:54) as well as possessing the other signs of a great kingdom, the situation being thus, the villages of the kingdom are peaceful (quiet)…the kings having consulted with each other like this, wise men (perfect in high knowledge) said that the kingdom would be peaceful (quiet) when there were no prostitutes [pyin-dan-sa]. The Lisawi kings said that from within their families they would take one maiden and make her a prostitute [pyin-dan-sa]. All the people of the kingdom would follow this princess (princesse's example) and they would communicate with each other in a close and intimate manner (touching an slightly grazing their skin together.) . When happiness reigned free they would take the princess away. Kings who loved their country would abandon their families and perform their royal duties in an inappropriate manner. This princess would have sexual intercourse with the Lisawi kings and would become pregnant. After a natural period of time, when she gave birth, she would give birth to a piece of flesh. After having placed this piece of flesh in a pot, and after having sealed it shut well, would abandon it outside the city in a place used for dumping garbage (and waste). At that time a great dragon would circle around the pot and cover it so as to protect it. When the piece of flesh had ripened it would become a young man and the people of the country raising a great clamor would all look (gaze upon) at the young man.

When a great minister of the kingdom of Wesali heard of this he went there and took the jar away. When he opened it and looked inside, he saw a young man perfect in all the signs of glory and knowledge and he took him as a son. When the great dragon saw people for the first time he ran around making the sound "thu thu" ("thu thu" in Pali and "shu shu" in Burmese.) and because of this, the young man that was found in the jar was named "Thu-thu-naga" ("naga" means dragon). When Thuthunaga was a child king Azatathat asked the lord Buddha if he could attack Weithali and the Lord Buddha ordered (requested) the Leissawi kings to pay obeisance to Azatathat (to bow down to him). Even though he asked (ordered) them two times and then a third time with no success to pay obeisance, he did not attack them. After the lord Buddha acheived the state of Parinibbana he sent the Brahman Wathagara to the kingdom of Weithali. and after destroying the Leissawi kings placed the Azatathat king on the throne and having subjugated the whole kingdom of Wethali he took people of this kingdom back with him to the kingdom of Yazakyaw to serve him there.

93. About the twelve kings who reigned starting from Thuthunaga, KalaThoka, and Badatheinasa.

At that time the young man Thuthunaga, being in his childhood, was like a great minister. When he arrived at manhood and the great warrior Yazakyaw saw that he exhibited courage to perfection in his habits and behavior, this great minister, not having a son himself, made him his son. When his father, the great warrior, arrived at impermanence (passed away) he became in his turn a great warrior like his father. This great warrior Thuthunaga was perfect in glory, strength, knowledge, generosity, and when Nagadatha was driven away (expelled) the great minister Thuthunaga ascended the throne. When the great minister Thuthunaga became king he lived in the kingdom of Wethali. King Thuttunaga enjoyed the luxurious life of a king for 18 years. In the 90th year of the sacred calendar he arrived at impermanence and his son Kalathawka became king. Ten years after, King Kalathawka ascended the throne, when the sacred calendar had reached a full 100 years in the kingdom of Wethali the minister Shinmahathaya with 700 noble Yahanda under the sponsorship of (relying on, depending on) King Kalathawka convened the second Buddhist Synod. After holding this synod King Kalathawka lived a another 18 years. All told he enjoyed the luxurious life of a king for 28 years. In the year 118 of the sacred calendar King Kalathawka arrived at impermanence and his son Thadatheina and his ten older and younger brothers reigned as king for 21 years all told.

The names of the 10 sons of the kings were: King Badatheina, King Korantuwunna, King Bagura, King Thabban, King Zalika, King Uthaba, King Kusitha, King Korapaya, Nandiwussana, and King Pissimaga. Among (out of) these 10 kings the last king, King Pissimaga, became king and in the year 140 of the sacred calendar the great bandit king (leader of thieves) Ngananda killed King Pissima and assuming the name Okatheina he made himself king.

93. About the nine kings who reigned starting from king Okatheina.

The story of the thief Okatheina runs as follows. Outside the country of Weithali, all of the great bandit kings, his fellow thieves, honored him greatly and they came and robbed and destroyed the villages of the kingdom. In the wake of their destruction they carried both their loot and the owners of the loot, telling them where to carry the loot they sent them on their way. Sometimes they would catch a person perfect in strength and they would order him to carry things (they were made into porters). The porters would ask the thieves, "Hey you, what are you up to ? (what is your project agenda, what are you doing) Tell me." They replied, "Hey you, we plow fields, raise buffalo, and destroy remote villages. We're always looking for things to steal and when we find them we use as much force (and violence) as it takes to get them. From our loot we get money to buy food and drink. We make a living (support ourselves) and have a good time at the same time." When this person heard the way the thieves talked, he liked it and became a thief himself. One time they entered a village and while they were robbing the villagers overcame the thieves (destroyed the band of thieves) and killed their leader. (His followers) His band of thieves broke up in disarray and wailed loudly longing for their dead leader. The porter who had become a thief said, "Hey you ... when you had a leader he could direct all your banditry, both large and small, couldn't he? I, like your former leader, can also direct you." The followers of the bandit king liked this idea very much and made him the leader of the thieves. This person who was made leader of the thieves was perfect in his work, his ideas, his strength, and in his ability as a cavalry leader and became widely known as the bandit leader Nagananda. This person requested his eight brothers to serve under him and sometimes his brothers would come respectively to his presence and discuss things with him. "This robbing and destroying the villages of people who live in the remote areas of the kingdom is not the sort of work that daring heroes do. If we try hard (in attacking) to conquer (subjugate) large towns and kingdoms, we will be true heroes." Having discussed things in this way they decided that this was the best (most appropriate) course of action. Requesting that everyone humbly accede to this plan, and having said this in order to persuade and organize his followers he called a meeting and made war against the Pissima king. The Pissima king (this king) had forgotten how to work (fight) with great effort (strive, endeavor), becoming king the leader of the thieves Ngananda plundered and ruled over the kingdom. After becoming king he was called the King Okatheinna. When we refer to these kings we should note that the effort that kings who lords of large kingdoms put into ruling should not decrease (wane). It is best to continually send spies to study the situation and find out as much as they can find out and listen to as much as they can listen to about the affairs of all the regions and villages of the kingdom. In the Upamingala Zat (play, drama), although the King Sunanibramadat and that (together with) 101 kings who rule outside of Zambudipa island tried repeatedly to subjugate the country of Wideha, they could not overcome them despite (using) applying with great effort (striving to overcome them with) all the tricks and artifices that were used by Mahothada. Soon after the bandit king Okatheina became king he arrived at impermanence (he died). When Okatheinna no longer existed, his eight younger brothers one by one became king in their turn (succesively became king). Okatheinna king and the other 9 kings ruled (all told) for 21 more years. The nine kings were called: King Okatheinna Nanda, King Bantukananda, King Bantukatithananda, King Butabalananda, King Kawtithanagananda, King Yathawidikananda, King Kawliyananda, King Yathananda, and King Danananda. Among these 12 people who were kings, the last of them King Danananda was assassinated by Zanakabonna and in the year 162 of the sacred calendar Sandagotta became king. Zanakabonna (was the one who) put Sandagotta on the throne.

95. About Zanakabonna.

The story (facts) of Zanakabonna run like this. In the country of Thakato Zanaka Bonna he completed his course of studies in order to finish the three Vedas. He completed his study of medical mandalas. He became clever in the use of tricks and artifices. When he had acheived great acumen (perceptivity) and artfulness in all that he did, and had knowledge of (was acquainted with various) specialized treatises, it became widely known that he was perfect in the glory and knowledge of those for whom it is appropriate to bear white umbrellas. People respected him greatly because he didn't have a father (was fatherless) and supported his Brahman mother all by himself. One time his Brahman mother heard the widespread rumor that her son would become king, she wailed (weeped loudly), "My son, a king! Any king when he becomes king is likely to lose his love for his mother even though she is the one who gave birth to him. When my son becomes king he will not love me and I will have no one to take care of me and no one to turn to." Zanaka Bonna asked his mother where on his body (on his person) this honor and glory that would come to him if he became king would be seen. His mother replied that four tusks would appear. The Brahman Zannaka said to himself that it would be better (be more honorable) to support his mother than become king. Thinking in this way he pulled out his tusks and proceeded to help his mother.

Because of this, because he was a person who knew (showed) gratitude to his mother and forsook becoming king (to help her) everyone honored him because he was someone who took care of his mother. The Brahman Zannaka did not have a very beautiful body (form). Because the strength of his legs and arms as well as for other reasons, the form (shape) of his body was not good. While being thus, being widely known that he would become king, having broken his teeth, the ominous signs of becoming a king (prescient of becoming a king) had become mixed up (confused, interfered with) a little. Referring to the habits (practices) of this, Brahman people were saying that sons and daughters who showed (knew) gratitude to their parents encountered (met) extreme difficulties.

One time, the Brahman Zanakka pondering many problems and questions, and in traveling afar arrived at the kingdom of Patalipot also called Bobbapura. In the country of Patalipot there was a king named Danananda who was so rich that he possessed no less than 800,000,000 things. He was also miserly. So that no one could get these things he possessed, sunk into the ground and the water, and kept them there. After damming up the Ginga river he ordered a big hole to be dug out of stone at the bottom of the river and he gathered his gold, silver, and other objects of value into a great hoard and deposited them there (sunk into the hole, shaft) and when he had covered the top of it with a great boulder, so that water could not enter it he ordered it to be sealed shut with a brass cover (to which a sticky substance had been applied), and only then after having carried these difficult procedures for securing his wealth, he order the waters of the Ginga river to flow as they had before. In the state (country) of this king he wouldn't even let grass or wood go without taxation. His actions were always directed (geared) towards obtaining (accumulating) silver and gold. After a while this King Danananda, he changed his mind about this idea he had of sinking his wealth into the ground for safekeeping, and then by wanting to give it away in charity he wanted to rid himself of this (trashy, grimy) dirty habit of miserliness. He ordered a pavilion to be built in the palace grounds (square) and then directed things (things, goods, things) of 100,000 in value to be given in charity to great Brahmans and things of 10,000 value to be given to lesser Brahmans. The Brahman Zanaka was staying upriver (upcountry). At that time King Danananda, his retinue (his retainers) shining with (adorned) with all the luxurious accoutrements of a king entered the donation pavilion. When the high ranking (great) Brahmans saw the Brahman Zanaka who was living upriver (upcountry), not liking him they ordered him to be driven away (thrown out, expelled). Those directing the charitable giving said repeatedly that he shouldn't be driven away. But the great king because he didn't like him ordered him to be driven away. Because the people the king ordered to carry out his order were not even brave enough to say, "We come to this pavillion with the power of a king to order you not to stay here," with a craving to possess these goods being offered in charity, respecting the king out of fear, because they were not brave enough to blame the Brahman Zanaka one of the people who was to receive some of the charitable goods craving them without love or charity themselves, they all loved and craved the charitable goods and they were all blameworthy. When the Brahman Zanaka heard what the servants of the king were talking about, he told them that they should not talk in any way against kings, and all the kings servants became ashamed and afraid. Then they took the cotton fibres they wore around their necks and undid the knots that held them together and broke their water jars against the door posts and the water spilled all over the floors and they swore at the King Danananda saying that there was no benefit from having him as king and then they left. When the great king heard of this, swearing, he ordered them to be caught and killed. The Brahmans, so that they could escape and hide, had to flee (were forced to live without), naked without their basoes, an action that is contrary to Buddhist doctrine/dogma.

At that time King Danananda had a young son named Babbata. Close friends of the young man deceived the young man so as to get control of him (so that he would fall into their hands).

Because they encountered many difficulties in trying to control the king's son, they decided that it was necessary to get him out of the kings house, and when they had built a tunnel under the ground that they could use to carry him away (to carry him away with), this tunnel led into the the king's compound and then they stole the keys to the palace that the mother carried with her at all times. Having stolen the keys they entered the house and ran away with the king's son and then lived (resided) in the Weisatawi forest (jungle).

The Brahman Zannaka with the power of his cleverness and skill was able to increase the value of his worldy possessions from one kyat to 1000 kyat and then he continued his studies to fill himself with the knowledge of material things. He amassed (accumulated) material things of 800,000,000 kyats in value. Amassing and burying his wealth in the ground for safe keeping and then he looked for a person who was like the young man Babbata (the son of Danananda) who perfect in his glory was suitable to be a king. The Brahman Zannaka had the following plan. Because King Danananda holds a deep grudge when he faces danger, he cannot be sure that everything will come to pass according to his desires (and the way he as ordered and directed things) and then the Brahman Zannaka continued his study of material things (of the material world). [Because of this kings who act as the lords of great kingdoms even though they get angry must act with greater sympathy than all the people they govern (they are held to a higher standard).]

For this reason, in the sacred teachings (doctrines, dogma) of the lord Buddha, the Buddha taught Atharathayi, that kings should bear patiently (tolerate, endure) the things that are hard to endure but that can be endured. The meaning of the Pali term Atharathayi is that everyone should bear patiently those things that cannot be endured. During the life of the lord Buddha the great king Bathawnadikawthala served the lord Buddha and when he saw the lord Buddha near kings who were heretical beggars who stood up and paid reverence to him. He observed that when they paid reverence to him they were not really worshipping him. There were heretical doctrines in the countries of these kings and holding grudges like this they were not capable of paying reverence (showing respect), and it was in this manner that they paid respect. (It is better in this passage to use the phrase "shi-hko" which means pay reverence explicity because it is used so much it almost becomes a written object in and of itself). [Because of the example of these kings a king should have the habit of treating all the people around the country just like his own sons. Only when he cultivates habits like this and acts in this manner will all the people of his kingdom work for the benefit and prosperity of their exalted sovereign king and in this manner he will be rich and enjoy all the luxuries of a kingly life.]

96. About the young man Sandagotta.

The brahman Zanakka having amassed (accumulated) extensive knowledge of material things, when he was looking for a young man like Babbata who was fit to become king in the future, he came across (found, met, encountered) Sandagotta. The background of Sandagotta runs like this. At the time that the acts of the noble Buddha were well known throughout the land the King named Witaduba attacked the Thakiwin Kings and destroyed the Thakiwin Kings. Having been destroyed, what remained of the Thakiwin kings and their followers, having been spared their lives, lived in the forest and relied on the forest for their subsistence. At this time they built a town in a pleasant place where the sound of peacocks and cranes could be heard and this place was called Moriya. One day an envoy attacked the kingdom of Moriya and when they had laid waste to the kingdom, the queen of the king of Moriya being pregnant, her husband decided to part with her so that her life could be spared sending her to the country of Patalibot. Arriving there, she reached the stage of advanced pregnancy (came to term, ripened, the womb quickened) and she gave birth to a son. The gods helped her and putting the baby in a jar, they placed the jar in front of the gate of an oxen enclosure (corral for oxen). Aided by the power of the Nats, like the youth Yawthaka, the lead bull in the herd named Sanda took care of the jar so that no danger would come to it. When the cowherd taking care of this herd saw the youth he felt intense affection (love) and pity for him and obtaining the child henceforth (from that time on) raised the child as if it were his own. Because the head bull of the herd had taken care of the boy in this fashion the boy was named Sandagotta (he was named in reference to this act).

When the young cowherd reached maturity (became a man, came of age) a hunter saw and having a strong affection for him asked the boy to accompany him, and looked after him from this time on. During this time when the youth Sandagotta played with other cowherds he had the appearance of a king and he issued orders to his young friends as if he were a crown prince or a great soldier and his young friends were his bodyguards and when they were playing they would bring thieves to him and he would ask them questions and investigate the case to see if they were blameworthy or not (whether there was blame or not) and finding that the extent of their "guilt was such that they deserved to have their legs and arms chopped off (to be dismembered), he issued decisions like a judge to those who served under him (min-hma) to carry out the punishment (to chop them off). When the children he ordered around in turn told him that there was no axe for chopping he handed them a play axe, a long spear like object made of a large goat bone with a small bone inserted at the top like a blade, and saying that the king Sandagotta possessed great power applied themselves to the task (set themselves to) of chopping as the king had ordered. Having pretended to chop off their (the victims) arms and legs King Sandagotta with all his power and glory ordered their legs and arms to once again be restored. When the Brahman Zanaka heard of this, it was said that he was amazed and straightaway giving the hunter goods worth 1,000 kyat took the one said to be gifted in the Vedas, Sandagotta, away with him. When Sandagotta had arrived into his hands he made a gold choker (collar) and having strung this Tamotkyaw (ornamental braided necklace of many colors) around his neck, he adorned (decorated) his neck in this fashion. The sons of the king after studying under the Brahman for a long period of time, told the Brahman scholar about the various (princely) dreams they had had (during their life) as a prince. After the Brahman had listened to these dreams once more (again) he came to the conclusion (decided) that the youth Babbata, the king's son, could not possibly become king. He knew that the youth Sandagotta would become king of Zambudipa after the present king had passed away. Even though he knew of this, he didn't want the kings sons to know of this and kept this to himself (kept it a secret).

97. How prince Sandagotta murdered King Danananda.

One day they were sleeping in a clump of bushes in the forest. The Brahman scholar woke up before the others and then when the youth Babbata had woken up, he slipped a dagger into Babbata's hand and asked him to get (take) the necklace around Sandagotta's neck (that he was adorned with) without undoing it, cutting it, or taking it off him. The youth Babatta replied in turn that he could get (take) it but not without undoing it, cutting it, or taking it off him. When an opportune time had arrived the Brahman in turn asked Sandagotta to do what he had requested Babbata to do before and when the youth Babbata had fallen asleep the youth Sandagotta asked himself whether this was possible and then cut off the head of Babatta and took the ornament around his neck. The scholar Brahman kept it for himself and when Sandagotta came of age (arrived at maturity, became a man) imparted to him the knowledge of the vedas and then by watching and listening to him he came to the conclusion that his skills (ability) had reached perfection. In order for him to gain knowledge from working and planning, he gave him the gold, silver, and valuable objects he had buried under the earth and in order to carry out the internal affairs of the kingdom found good people for him to associate with, and as the time for action drew near the Brahman Zanaka decided that it would be best for Sandagotta to tackle the difficulties he encountered himself and parted from him. Sandagotta used his wealth to hire mercenaries (to gather together mercenary soldiers) and made war against King Danananda. Because wave after wave of people living in the country he was attacking, attacked him the troops (forces) of Sandagotta were destroyed.

98. How ... subjugated and became king.

Not complete (sanei = cry out in an auspicious manner, sanei na = enquire, investigate, nose around for news, information.)

100. Prince Banduthara becomes king and how queen Dhamma after becoming pregnant craves five things.

The great king Banduthara elevated a woman of the royal family of the Mawriya royal family whose name was Dhamma to be queen. When she became pregnant with a child that would later become the great King Dhammathawka she craved five things (had five desires or cravings). The five desires were that she wanted to step on the sun with one of her feet and the moon with the other and then she wanted to eat all the stars in the sky. She wanted to eat all the clouds passing through the sky. She wanted to eat all the sprouts (tendrils) of trees that had newly shot out of the earth. She also wanted to eat worms living inside (under) the earth. When the great King Banduthara heard that queen Dhamma had these five cravings, in order to put her at peace, asked the queens teacher, the heretic Saranaziwaka perfect in his learning, what to do.

101. How Saranaziwaka preached (or taught). (The teaching of Saranaziwaka)

Although he will become king, he will not be a king in name only. He will be able to conquer the kings that shine over the surface of Zambudeik island, like moons and suns. This is why you've had these premonitions of stepping on the sun and the moon. As for the premonition of wanting to eat the stars, he will kill his own brothers, born from the same father (he will kill as much as you could speak of or enumerate). As for the premonition of wanting to eat clouds, the grimy false opinions, the heretical ideas that run contrary to the Buddhist religion, they will all disappear. As for the premonition of wanting to eat worms, his power will spread out (everywhere) even under the earth up to a distance of one Yuzana. As for the premonition of wanting to eat all the sprouts (tendrils) of trees that had newly shot out of the earth, his power will spread out even above into the sky for a distance of up to one Yuzana." The wise man Saranaziwaka spoke like this. At the time these teachings were given the queen recorded what he had said on a golden palm leaf. When she was sure that things would come to pass as this teacher had preached (taught, spoken, predicted) she placed this writing on a golden litter replete with jewels and she was said to have then paid great reverence to it.

102. About the birth of Prince Dhamathawka.

When the queen arrived at the proper day and month, she gave birth to the boy. When the youth arrived at the age when he was capable of governing, he was requested to come over and sit on his lap. Once during this time the great king held a conch shell in his left hand, and during the day the young boy would go over to the shell and put kyin-nge liquid in it, the great king would take the conch shell and pour the kyin-nge liquid over the young boy's head (on the top of the boys head). The queen called her wise teacher and asked him about this (pouring). The wise teacher replied that the youth would (now) receive the royal coronation of a king (bitheik). Having said that her son would certainly become a king who ruled over the entire Zampudipa island, in ruling like this he will receive the coronation of a king. "When what I teach (preach) comes to pass (becomes true) come to where I live and tell me," he requested, and having requested this, he went away to a place (as much as) one hundred Yuzana away and lived there. When King Dhammathawka came of age his father the king gave him the front palace and ordered him to rule over the country of Aweini also known as the kingdom of Usseini. Then one day he sent him off to live in the village that he had been given to govern. During the journey of King Dhammathawka to the kingdom of Usseini, which was one hundred Yuzana away, when he had reached a stage of the journey ( a place along the route) about 50 Yuzana away from his destination, afraid of becoming a Casanova (Don Juan), when he had arrived in the kingdom of Weidithaka where the the Buddha's family, the Thakiwin clan, living in Weidithaka (and depending upon this country for his subsistence), he took the daughter of a rich man of the Thakiwin clan as his Weidithaka princess, and enjoyed the luxurious life of a king in the great kingdom of Usseini. On the very day that he married the Weidithaka princess (on his wedding day) she conceived the prince lord Maheinda. Having given birth to prince Maheinda, at the time when he could crawl, she gave birth to yet another child, the princess Thinnameitta. The prince Maheinda….

One day when he heard that his father the great king Beinduthara was sick, he quickly left the kingdom of Usseini and travelling home leaving queen Weidithaka together with his son and daughter behind in the city of Weidithaka.

104. How King Mahathawka subjugated his 99 rebellious older brothers.

When the body of his father the great king Beinduthara was still (had passed away) he secured the entire kingdom (made sure the whole country was under firm military control) and became king. His older brother prince Thumana hearing of this, together with 99 other brothers, like the crashing of the waves of the great ocean, engaged in (made, prosecuted) a great war with him, and made his way towards the kingdom of Patalibot. King Thiridhammathawka, driving the rebels from the battlefield, put down the rebellion (suppress, subdue), captured his older brother prince Thumana together with 99 other brothers and killed them.


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