| Minor Stories Index
The Story of Lajadevadhita
While residing at the Jetavana monastery, the Buddha uttered Verse (118) of this
reference to Laja, a female deva.
At one time Thera Mahakassapa stayed in the Pipphali cave and remained in
absorption in Concentration (samapatti) for seven days. Soon after he had arisen
samapatti, wishing to give someone a chance of offering something to a thera
from samapatti, he looked out and found a young maid frying corn in a field-hut.
So he stood
at her door for alms-food and she put all the pop corn into the bowl for the
thera. As she
turned back after offering pop corn to the thera, she was bitten by a poisonous
died. She was reborn in Tavatimsa deva world and was known as Laja (pop corn)
Laja realized that she was reborn in Tavatimsa, because she had offered pop corn
Mahakassapa and felt very grateful to him. Then she concluded that she should
doing some services to the thera in order to make her good fortune more
enduring. So, every
morning she went to the monastery of the thera, swept the premises, filled up
and did other services. At first, the thera thought that young samaneras had
services; but one day, he found out that a female deva had been performing those
So he told her not to come to the monastery any more, as people might start
talking if she
kept on coming to the monastery. Lajadevadhita was very upset; she pleaded with
and cried, "Please do not destroy my riches, my wealth." The Buddha heard her
cries and sent
forth the radiance from his chamber and said to the female deva, "devadhita, it
is the duty
of my son Kassapa to stop your coming to the monastery; to do good deeds is the
duty of one
who is anxious to gain merit."
Then the Buddha spoke in verse as follows:
Verse 118. If a man does what is good, he should do it again and again; he
should take delight in
it; the accumulation of merit leads to happiness.
At the end of the discourse, Lajadevadhita attained Sotapatti Fruition.
Translated by Daw Mya Tin, M.A.,
Burma Pitaka Association, Rangoon, Burma 1986.
24 December 2016