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VII:6 The monk who accused Venerable Sariputta
It was the end of the vassa rainy season; and Venerable Sariputta was about to set out on a journey with some bhikkhus. A young bhikkhu, who bore some grudge against Sariputta approached the Buddha and complained that Sariputta had abused him and beaten him. The Buddha therefore sent for Sariputta and gave him the opportunity to explain himself. Without asserting his innocence he replied as follows, 'Venerable Sir! How could a bhikkhu, who steadfastly keeps his mind on the body, set out on a journey without apologising, after doing wrong to a fellow bhikkhu? I am like the earth, which feels no pleasure when flowers are cast on it, nor resentment when rubbish and excrete are piled upon it. I am also like the door-mat, the beggar, the bull with broken horns, I also feel abhorrence for the impurity of the body and am no longer attached to it.'
When Sariputta spoke in such a humble way the young erring bhikkhu felt remorse and admitted that he had wrongly accused Sariputta. Then the Buddha advised Sariputta to accept the apology of the young bhikkhu, lest a bad effect should fall on the latter. The young bhikkhu then respectfully asked for pardon. Sariputta pardoned the young bhikkhu and in turn asked to be forgiven if he also had done any wrong.*
All those present praised Sariputta, and the Buddha said, 'Bhikkhus, an Arahant like Sariputta has no anger or ill-will in him. Like the earth and the door-post, he is patient, tolerant and firm, he is serene and pure.'
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