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Kaṇhadīpāyana Jātaka (No.444)

During the reign of Kosambaka in Kosambī, two brahmins, Dīpāyana and Maṇḍabya (v.l. Maṇḍavya), gave away their vast wealth and lived for fifty years as ascetics in Himavā. After that, while on a pilgrimage to Bārāṇasī, they were entertained by a householder who was also named Maṇḍabya. Dīpāyana journeyed on while the ascetic Maṇḍabya remained in a cemetery near Bārāṇasī. There some robbers left some stolen goods outside his hut, and Maṇḍabya, being charged before the king, was impaled, but by virtue of his great powers he continued to live. Dīpāyana came to see his friend, and finding him thus and learning that he bore no ill-will towards anyone, took up his abode under his impaled body. Gouts of gore fell from Maṇḍabya’s wound on to Dīpāyana’s golden body and there dried, forming black spots; so he came to be called Kaṇha-Dīpāyana. When the king heard of this, he had Maṇḍabya released with a piece of the stake still inside him, on account of which he came to be called Āṇi-Maṇḍabya. Dīpāyana returned to the householder Maṇḍabya, whose son Yaññadatta he helped to heal by an Act of Truth, the child having been bitten by a snake while playing ball. The lad’s parents then performed acts of Truth. In this declaration of Truth it was disclosed that Dīpāyana had no desire for the ascetic life, that the father did not believe in the fruits of generosity, and that the mother had no love for her husband. They thereupon admonished each other and agreed to mend their ways.

The Maṇḍabya of the story was Ānanda, his wife Visākhā, the son Rāhula, Āṇi-Maṇḍabya Sāriputta and Kaṇha-Dīpāyana the Bodhisatta (J.iv.27 ff). The occasion for the story is the same as that for the Kusa Jātaka (q.v.) In one verse Kaṇha-Dīpāyana is addressed merely as Kaṇha (Ibid., p.33).

The story is also given in the Cariyāpiṭaka (p.99 f).

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