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Visayha Jātaka (No.340)

The Bodhisatta was once born as Visayha, the treasurer of Bārāṇasī, and gave alms daily to six hundred thousand persons in six different parts of the city. Sakka’s throne was heated by his great generosity, and, feeling nervous for his safety, Sakka contrived that all Visayha’s possessions should disappear. Quite undaunted, Visayha became a grass-cutter, and for six days gave alms from the money so earned, he and his wife fasting. On the seventh day, while cutting grass, he fainted, and Sakka, appearing before him, suggested that he, should be moderate in his generosity. Visayha rejected the suggestion as unworthy and declared that his aim was Buddhahood. Thereupon Sakka praised him and made him prosperous.

The story was related to Anāthapiṇḍika, as mentioned in the Khadiraṅgāra Jātaka. Visayha’s wife is identified with Rāhulamātā. J.iii.128‑32; see also J.i.45.

The story is given in the Jātakamālā (No.5), where the treasurer is called Avisayha.

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