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Punnamāsa

1. Punnamāsa Thera.– He was born in Sāvatthi as the son of a brahmin, named Samiddhi; he was called Punnamāsa because, on the day of his birth, all the empty vessels in the house were filled with gold coins. He left the world after a son had been born to him, and, having entered the Order under the Buddha, he took the formula of the five bodily impurities ¹ (tacapañcaka) as a topic of meditation and became an Arahant. His former wife adorned herself and came with her child, seeking to seduce him, but without success.

In the time of Vipassī Buddha he was a partridge (cakkavāka), and, pleased with the appearance of the Buddha, offered him a sāla flower, holding it in his beak. Seventeen world-cycles ago he became king eight times under the name of Sucārudassana (Thag. vs. 10; ThagA.i.53 f).

He is evidently identical with Paccāgamanīya of the Apadāna. Ap.i.113.

¹ Hair of the head (kesa), body hair (loma), nails (nakha), teeth (danta), and skin (taca). This contemplation on the first five of the 32 body parts is generally given while shaving the candidate’s head for ordination (ed.)

2. Punnamāsa Thera.– He was born at Sāvatthi in a landowner’s family. He was named Punnamāsa because, on the day of his birth, all the empty vessels in the house became filled with gold and silver coins. He left the world after the birth of a son, and, dwelling near the village, put forth effort, until he became an Arahant. Then going to Sāvatthi, he paid homage to the Buddha and dwelt in a charnel field. Meanwhile his son died, and his wife, wishing to prevent the king from taking the property, which was now left without an heir, went, with a large company, to her husband in order to persuade him to return to the lay life.

In the time of Tissa Buddha he was wandering about the forest, bow in hand, when he saw the Buddha’s robe hanging on a branch outside his cell. He immediately threw away his bow and, recalling the Buddha’s virtues, paid homage to the robe. Thag.vs.171, 172; ThagA.i.297 f.

He is probably identical with Paṃsukūlasaññika of the Apadāna. Ap.ii.418 f.

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