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  • Sona-Nanda Jātaka (No. 532)

Once when Manoja was king of Brahmavaddhana (Benares), the Bodhisatta was born as Sona, the son of a rich brahmin. He had a brother Nanda. When the boys grew up their parents wanted them to marry, but they refused, and declared their desire to become ascetics after the death of their parents. Then the parents suggested that they should all, at once, become ascetics; this they did, and lived in a pleasant grove in the Himālaya. After some time, because Nanda brought unripe fruit for his parents in spite of Sona's warning, Sona dismissed him. Nanda thereupon sought Manoja, and, with his magic power, helped him to win various kingdoms in Jambudīpa, bringing into subjection one hundred and one kings in seven years, seven months and seven days. All these kings Manoja brought to Brahmavaddhana, where he caroused with them. Nanda spent his time in the Suvannaguhā in the Himālaya, obtaining his alms from Uttarakuru. At the end of the seventh day Manoja looked for Nanda, who, reading his thoughts, appeared before him. Manoja wished to give some token of his gratitude, and Nanda asked that he should intercede for him with Sona and win for him Sona's forgiveness. Together they went to Sona accompanied by a large retinue. Sona explained why he had forbidden Nanda, to look after their parents, and Nanda asked his forgiveness for having given his parents unripe fruit in his eagerness to wait on them. Sona forgave him, and they all lived together once more, while the kings returned to their countries, where they ruled wisely.

The occasion for the story is the same as that for the Sāma Jātaka (q.v.), regarding a monk who supported his mother. Nanda is identified with Ananda and Manoja with Sāriputta (J.v.312, p.332).

The story is also given in the Cariyapitaka. Cyp.iii.v.


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