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The Gospel of Buddha


  • Preface:
    by Paul Carus

  • Chapter 01:
  • Chapter 02:
    Samsara and Nirvana
  • Chapter 03:
    Truth the Saviour

    Prince Siddhattha becomes Buddha
  • Chapter 04:
    The Bodhisatta's Birth
  • Chapter 05:
    The Ties of Life
  • Chapter 06:
    The Three Woes
  • Chapter 07:
    The Bodhisatta's Renunciation
  • Chapter 08:
    King Bimbisara
  • Chapter 09:
    The Bodhisatta's Search
  • Chapter 10:
    Uruvela, the Place of Mortification
  • Chapter 11:
    Mara, the Evil One
  • Chapter 12:
  • Chapter 13:
    The First Converts
  • Chapter 14:
    Brahma's Request

    The Foundation of the Kingdom of Righteousness
  • Chapter 15:
  • Chapter 16:
    The Sermon at Benares
  • Chapter 17:
    The Sangha
  • Chapter 18:
    Yasa, the Youth of Benares
  • Chapter 19:
  • Chapter 20:
    The Sermon at Rajagaha
  • Chapter 21:
    The King's Gift
  • Chapter 22:
    Sariputta and Moggallana
  • Chapter 23:
  • Chapter 24:
    The Sermon on Charity
  • Chapter 25:
  • Chapter 26:
    The Three Characteristics and the Uncreate
  • Chapter 27:
    The Buddha's Father
  • Chapter 28:
  • Chapter 29:

    Consolidation of the Buddha's religion
  • Chapter 30:
    Jivaka, the Physician
  • Chapter 31:
    The Buddha's Parents Attain Nirvana
  • Chapter 32:
    Women Admitted to the Sangha
  • Chapter 33:
    The Bhikkhus' Conduct Toward Women
  • Chapter 34:
  • Chapter 35:
    The Uposatha and Patimokkha
  • Chapter 36:
    The Schism
  • Chapter 37:
    The Re-establishment of Concord
  • Chapter 38:
    The Bhikkhus Rebuked
  • Chapter 39:
  • Chapter 40:
    Name and Form
  • Chapter 41:
    The Goal
  • Chapter 42:
    Miracles Forbidden
  • Chapter 43:
    The Vanity of Worldliness
  • Chapter 44:
    Secrecy and Publicity
  • Chapter 45:
    The Annihilation of Suffering
  • Chapter 46:
    Avoiding the Ten Evils
  • Chapter 47:
    The Preacher's Mission

    The Teacher
  • Chapter 48:
    The Dhammapada
  • Chapter 49:
    The Two Brahmans
  • Chapter 50:
    Guard the Six Quarters
  • Chapter 51:
    Simha's Question Concerning Annihilation
  • Chapter 52:
    All Existence is Spiritual
  • Chapter 53:
    Identity and Non-Identity
  • Chapter 54:
    The Buddha Omnipresent
  • Chapter 55:
    One Essence, One Law, One Aim
  • Chapter 56:
    The Lesson Given to Rahula
  • Chapter 57:
    The Sermon on Abuse
  • Chapter 58:
    The Buddha Replies to the Deva
  • Chapter 59:
    Words of Instruction
  • Chapter 60:
  • Chapter 61:
    The Teacher Unknown

    Parables and Stories
  • Chapter 62:
  • Chapter 63:
    The Widow's Two Mites and the Parable of the Three Merchants
  • Chapter 64:
    The Man Born Blind
  • Chapter 65:
    The Lost Son
  • Chapter 66:
    The Giddy Fish
  • Chapter 67:
    The Cruel Crane Outwitted
  • Chapter 68:
    Four Kinds of Merit
  • Chapter 69:
    The Light of the World
  • Chapter 70:
    Luxurious Living
  • Chapter 71:
    The Communication of Bliss
  • Chapter 72:
    The Listless Fool
  • Chapter 73:
    Rescue in the Desert
  • Chapter 74:
    The Sower
  • Chapter 75:
    The Outcast
  • Chapter 76:
    The Woman at the Well
  • Chapter 77:
    The Peacemaker
  • Chapter 78:
    The Hungry Dog
  • Chapter 79:
    The Despot
  • Chapter 80:
  • Chapter 81:
    The Marriage-Feast in Jambunada
  • Chapter 82:
    A Party in Search of a Thief
  • Chapter 83:
    In the Realm of Yamaraja
  • Chapter 84:
    The Mustard Seed
  • Chapter 85:
    Following the Master Over the Stream
  • Chapter 86:
    The Sick Bhikkhu
  • Chapter 87:
    The Patient Elephant

    The Last Days
  • Chapter 88:
    The Conditions of Welfare
  • Chapter 89:
    Sariputta's Faith
  • Chapter 90:
  • Chapter 91:
    The Mirror of Truth
  • Chapter 92:
  • Chapter 93:
    The Buddha's Farewell Address
  • Chapter 94:
    The Buddha Announces His Death
  • Chapter 95:
    Chunda, the Smith
  • Chapter 96:
  • Chapter 97:
    The Buddha's Final Entering into Nirvana

  • Chapter 98:
    The Three Personalities of the Buddha
  • Chapter 99:
    The Purpose of Being
  • Chapter 100:
    The Praise of All the Buddhas

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    The Gospel of Buddha

    The Sermon at Rajagaha

    And the Blessed One having dwelt some time in Uruvela went forth to Rajagaha,
    accompanied by a great number of bhikkhus, many of whom had been Jatilas before;
    and the great Kassapa, chief of the Jatilas and formerly a fireworshipper, went with him. [1]

    When the Magadha king, Seniya Bimbisara, heard of the arrival of Gotama Sakyamuni,
    of whom the people said, "He is the Holy One, the blessed Buddha,
    guiding men as a driver curbs bullocks, the teacher of high and low,"

    he went out surrounded with his counsellors and generals
    and came to the grove where the Blessed One was. [2]

    There they saw the Blessed One in the company of Kassapa,
    the great religious teacher of the Jatilas,
    and they were astonished and thought:
    "Has the great Sakyamuni placed himself under the spiritual direction of Kassapa,
    or has Kassapa become a disciple of Gotama?"

    And the Tathagata, reading the thoughts of the people, said to Kassapa:
    "What knowledge hast thou gained, O Kassapa,
    and what has induced thee to renounce the sacred fire
    and give up thine austere penances?"

    Kassapa said:
    "The profit I derived from adoring the fire
    was continuance in the wheel of individuality
    with all its sorrows and vanities.
    This service I have cast away,
    and instead of continuing penances and sacrifices
    I have gone in quest of the highest Nirvana.
    Since I have seen the light of truth,
    I have abandoned worshipping the fire."

    The Buddha, perceiving that the whole assembly
    was ready as a vessel to receive the doctrine,
    spoke thus to Bimbisara the king: [6]

    "He who knows the nature of self
    and understands how the senses act,
    finds no room for selfishness,
    and thus he will attain peace unending.
    The world holds the thought of self,
    and from this arises false apprehension.

    "Some say that the self endures after death, some say it perishes.
    Both are wrong and their error is most grievous.

    "For if they say the self is perishable,
    the fruit they strive for will perish too,
    and at some time there will be no hereafter.
    Good and evil would be indifferent.
    This salvation from selfishness is without merit.

    "When some, on the other hand,
    say the self will not perish,
    then in the midst of all life and death
    there is but one identity unborn and undying.
    If such is their self,
    then it is perfect and cannot be perfected by deeds.
    The lasting, imperishable self could never be changed.
    The self would be lord and master,
    and there would be no use in perfecting the perfect;
    moral aims and salvation would be unnecessary.

    "But now we see the marks of joy and sorrow.
    Where is any constancy?
    If there is no permanent self that does our deeds,
    then there is no self;
    there is no actor behind our actions,
    no perceiver behind our perception,
    no lord behind our deeds.

    "Now attend and listen:
    The senses meet the object
    and from their contact sensation is born.
    Thence results recollection.
    Thus, as the sun's power through a burning-glass causes fire to appear,
    so through the cognizance born of sense and object,
    the mind originates and with it the ego, the thought of self,
    whom some Brahman teachers call the lord.
    The shoot springs from the seed;
    the seed is not the shoot,
    both are not one and the same,
    but successive phases in a continuous growth.
    Such is the birth of animated life.

    "Ye that are slaves of the self and toil in its service from morn until night,
    ye that live in constant fear of birth, old age, sickness, and death,
    receive the good tidings that your cruel master exists not.

    "Self is an error, an illusion, a dream.
    Open your eyes and awaken.
    See things as they are
    and ye will be comforted.

    "He who is awake will no longer be afraid of nightmares.
    He who has recognized the nature of the rope
    that seemed to be a serpent will cease to tremble.

    "He who has found there is no self
    will let go all the lusts and desires of egotism.

    "The cleaving to things, covetousness,
    and sensuality inherited from former existences,
    are the causes of the misery and vanity in the world. [17]

    "Surrender the grasping disposition of selfishness,
    and you will attain to that calm state of mind
    which conveys perfect peace, goodness, and wisdom."

    And the Buddha breathed forth this solemn utterance: [19]

      "Do not deceive, do not despise
      Each other, anymore.
      Do not be angry, nor should ye
      Secret resentment bear;
      For as a mother risks her life
      And watches o'er her child,
      So boundless be your love to all,
      So tender, kind and mild.

      "Yea, cherish good-will right and left,
      All round. early and late,
      And without hinderance, without stint,
      From every free and hate,
      While standing, walking, sitting down,
      Whate'er you have in mind,
      The rule of life that's always best
      Is to be loving-kind.

    "Gifts are great,
    the founding of viharas is meritorious,
    mediations and religious exercises pacify the heart,
    comprehension of the truth leads to Nirvana,
    but greater than all is loving kindness.
    As the light of the moon is sixteen times stronger the the light of all the stars,
    so lovingkindness is sixteen times more efficacious in liberating the heart
    than all other religious accomplishments taken together.

    "This state of heart is the best in the world.
    Let a man remain steadfast in it while he is awake,
    whether he is standing, walking, sitting, or lying down."

    When the Enlightened One had finished his sermon,
    the Magadha king said to the Blessed One: [24]

    "In former days, Lord, when I was a prince, I cherished five wishes.
    I wished: O, that I might be inaugurated as a king.
    This was my first wish, and it has been fulfilled.
    Further, I wished: Might the Holy Buddha, the Perfect One,
    appear on earth while I rule and might he come to my kingdom.
    This was my secong wish and it is fulfilled now.
    Further I wished: Might I pay my respects to him.
    This was my third wish and it is fulfilled now.
    The fourth wish was: Might the Blessed One preach the doctrine to me, and this is fulfilled now.
    The greatest wish, however, was the fifth wish:
    Might I understand the doctrine of the Blessed One.
    And this wish is fulfilled too.

    "Glorious Lord! Most glorious is the truth preached by the Tathagata!
    Our Lord, the Buddha, sets up what has been overturned;
    he reveals what has been hidden;
    he points out the way to the wanderer who has gone astray;
    he lights a lamp in the darkness so that those who have eyes to see may see.

    26 "I take my refuge in the Buddha.
    I take my refuge in the Dharma.
    I take my refuge in the Sangha."

    The Tathagata, by the exercise of his virtue and by wisdom,
    showed his unlimited spiritual power.
    He subdued and harmonized all minds.
    He made them see and accept the truth,
    and throughout the kingdom the seeds of virtue were sown. [28]

    End Chapter 20

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    The Gospel of Buddha
    The Gospel of Buddha
    Compiled from ancient records by Paul Carus, 1894

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