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Academic Sutta Name Notes PSA Plae Vagga Nikaya PTS Keywords

VII:1 The Buddha and his physician (Jivaka)

On one occasion, Devadatta tried to kill the Buddha by pushing a big rock on him from the Vulture's Peak. The rock struck a ledge on the side of the mountain and a splinter struck the big toe of the Buddha. He was taken to the mango-grove monastery of Jivaka. There, Jivaka, the renowned physician, attended to him and applied some medicine on the toe and bandaged it. Jivaka then left to see another patient in town, but promised to return and remove the bandage in the evening. When Jivaka returned that night, the city-gates were already closed and he could not attend to the Buddha. He was very upset because if the bandage was not removed in time, the whole body would be affected and the Buddha would be very ill.

The Buddha knew that Jivaka would not be able to attend to him, so he asked Venerable Ananda to remove the bandage and found that the wound was healed. Jivaka came to the monastery* early next morning to enquire whether he had felt great pain and distress the previous night. But the Buddha replied, 'Jivaka! Ever since I attained Enlightenment, I had the ability to stop pain and distress at any time whenever I needed to do so.' Then the Buddha explained the nature of the mind of an Enlightened One.

55/170 Dhammapada & Commentary Khuddhaka J.i.106ff. despair

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Last modified on: Sunday, 13 August 2000.