Oghataraṇa Sutta.– A deva visits the Buddha at Jetavana and asks him how he crossed the “Flood.”
“Unstayed and unstriving,” answers the Buddha. The deva is puzzled by the answer, until it is explained to him that a wrong support of footing and misdirected effort are as fatal as drowning straight away. The deva expresses his adoration of the Buddha (S.i.1).
The Saṃyuttanikāya Commentary (SA.i.14) adds that the deva was conceited, thinking he knew all about the saintship of a Buddha, hence the enigmatic reply, in order to puzzle him.