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Academic Sutta Name Notes PSA Plae Vagga Nikaya PTS Keywords
J.539 Mahaajanaka Jaataka The king of Mithila had two sons, Aritthajanaka and Polajanaka and at his death, the throne went to the elder. The elder suspected the younger of treachery and put him in chains. Polajanaka escaped, and later returned to lay seige Mithila, kill Aritthajanaka and seize the throne. Aritthajanaka’s wife escaped in disguise, with much treasure and pregnant with the Bodhisatva. Sakka provided her with a chariot to convey her to Kalacampa where she was adopted by an udicca-brahmin. At the age of sixteen, the bodhisatva (Mahajanaka) left by ship for Suvannabhumi taking half the treasure with him. The ship was wrecked mid-ocean, but the bodhisatva, undaunted, swam valiantly for seven days, until Manimekkhala, goddess of the sea, admiring his courage, rescued him and placed him in the mango-grove of Mithila. Meanwhile Polajanaka had died and left orders that the throne should go to anyone who could find favour in the eyes of the daughter, knew the head of a square bed, could string a bow that required the strength of one thousand men and draw out the sixteen great treasures. No-one forthcoming, the state chariot was sent out without a horseman, to search for an heir. It went straight to where Mahajanaka was lying -- he could solve the various riddles and was declared king. Later, the bodhisatva, against much dissuasion, renounced the world. The queen Sivali also renounced the world, staying in the royal park. The Jataka exemplifies the Perfection of perseverance. See also the identical Cula Janaka Jataka (J.052). 63/075 Jaataka Khuddhaka perseverance

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Last modified on: Sunday, 2 January 2000.