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Samyutta Nikaya

Saṁyutta Nikāya 6.14 Arunavati Sutta
The Discourse of the Arunavati Capital

The Buddha tells a past story of Buddha Sikhī and Arahant Abhibhū visiting the brahma world.

This is how I heard. At one time the Blessed One was staying in the province of Sāvatthi, in Jeta’s garden, Anāthapiṇḍika’s Monastery. There the Blessed One addressed the monks saying, “O monks!” “Bhante!” those monks replied to the Blessed One. The Blessed One said this:

“Monks, once in the past there was a king named Arunavā whose capital was Arunavati. The Blessed One Sikhī, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Buddha, lived in the capital Arunavati. The Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha, had two chief disciples named Abhibhū and Sambhava, an excellent pair.

“One day, the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha, told the monk Abhibhū: ‘Come, Brahmin, let us go to some certain brahma world until it is time for our meal.’ ‘Yes, bhante,’ The monk Abhibhū replied to the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha.

“Then, monks, just as quickly as a strong man extends his drawn-in arm or draws in his extended arm, so the Blessed One—the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha—and the monk Abhibhū disappeared from the capital Arunavati and reappeared in that brahma world.

“The Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha, told the monk Abhibhū, ‘Give a Dhamma talk, brahmin, to this brahma and to his attendant brahmas and to brahma’s assembly.’ ‘Yes, bhante,’ The monk Abhibhū replied to the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha. Then, with a Dhamma talk he instructed, urged, inspired and gladdened that brahma and his attendant brahmas and brahma’s assembly.

“After this, that brahma and his attendant brahmas and brahma’s assembly found fault with this, insulted and complained about it, saying, ‘It is wonderful indeed, sir! It is amazing indeed, sir! How can a disciple teach the Dhamma in the very presence of the Great Teacher?’

“Then, the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha, told the monk Abhibhū, ‘Brahmin, this brahma and his attendant brahmas and brahma’s assembly insult you saying, ‘It is wonderful indeed, sir! It is amazing indeed, sir! How can a disciple teach the Dhamma in the very presence of the Great Teacher?’

“‘Well then Brahmin, convince that brahma and his attendant brahmas and brahma’s assembly of the fault of their insult.’

“‘Yes, Bhante,’ the monk Abhibhū replied to the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha. Then he taught the Dhamma with his body visible, and with his body invisible, and with the lower half of his body visible and the upper half invisible, and the upper half of his body visible and the lower half invisible.

“This time, monks, that brahma and his attendant brahmas and brahma’s assembly, struck with wonder and amazement, said, ‘It is wonderful indeed, sir! It is amazing indeed, sir! How this monk has such great power and might!’

“Then, monks, the monk Abhibhū said to the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha: ‘I recall, Bhante, I made a statement in the midst of the community of monks like this “Venerable friends, while standing in the brahma world I can make my voice heard throughout the thousand fold world system.”’

“‘Now is the time for that, Brahmin! Now is the time for that, Brahmin! While standing in the brahma world you should make your voice heard throughout the thousand fold world system.’ ‘Yes, Bhante,’ the monk Abhibhū replied to the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha. Then, while standing in the brahma world, he recited these verses:

“‘Arouse your energy, do away with defilements! Strive hard to follow the Buddha’s training. Smash the army of Māra as an elephant does a hut of bamboo.

“‘One who strives diligently in the Buddha’s path of Dhamma and Discipline, having stopped the journey of rebirth, will make an end to suffering.’

“Then, monks, having convinced that brahma and his attendant brahmas and brahma’s assembly the fault of their insult, just as quickly as a strong man extends his drawn-in arm or draws in his extended arm, the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha and the monk Abhibhū, disappeared from that brahma world and reappeared in the capital Arunavati.

“Then, monks, the Blessed One, the Arahant, the supremely enlightened Sikhī Buddha, asked the monks: ‘Monks, did you hear the verses that the monk Abhibhū recited while he was in the brahma world?’ ‘Yes, Bhante, we did hear the verses that the monk Abhibhū recited while he was in the brahma world.’

“‘What were the verses you heard the monk Abhibhū recite while he was in the brahma world?’

“‘Bhante, we heard the verses that the monk Abhibhū recited while he was in the brahma world in this way:

“‘“Arouse your energy, do away with defilements! Strive hard to follow the Buddha’s training. Smash the army of Māra as an elephant does a hut of bamboo.

“‘“One who strives diligently in the Buddha’s path of Dhamma and Discipline, having stopped the journey of rebirth will make an end to suffering.’

“‘Bhante, these were the verses we heard that the monk Abhibhū recite while he was in the brahma world.

“‘Good, good, monks! It is good that you heard the verses that the monk Abhibhū recited while he was in the brahma world.’”

The Blessed One Gotama explained this incident about the Blessed One Sikhī and the monk Abhibhū. Those monks were elated and delighted in the Blessed One’s discourse.

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Saṁyutta Nikāya 6.14 Arunavati Sutta: The Discourse of the Arunavati Capital

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