Once when Pasenadi was talking with the
Buddha in the loggia outside the Migāramātupāsāda, there passed close by
thirty-five ascetics of various denominations - Jatilas, Niganthas, etc. - and
the king saluted them respectfully. Later, he asked the Buddha whether they were
arahants or on the way to arahantship. The Buddha explained to him how hard it
was for a layman, with all his encumbrances, to find an opportunity to learn the
truth about arahants; much time and care and attention were necessary. The king
agreed and mentioned how he gathered information through his spies. S. i.77f.