Velukantakī, Velukandakī, Velukantakiyā
A lady of Velukanta (Velukanda). She is mentioned
as an exemplary lay woman (A.i.88; ii.164). She founded, for the Order headed by
Moggallāna an offering which the
Buddha praised, because it was endowed with the six requisite qualities. See
Dāna Sutta (1).
Once she rose before dawn and sang the Parāyana.
Vessavana happened to be passing over her house on
his way from north to south (to see the Buddha, says SnA.i.369), and hearing the
song, stopped at her window to praise it and to reveal his identity. She greeted
him cordially, and in return for her greeting he announced to her that Sāriputta
and Moggallāna were on their way to Velukanta. She, delighted with the news,
made all preparations and sent word to the monastery, inviting the monks to the
house. After the meal, she informed the Elders that Vessavana had told her of
their arrival. When they expressed their amazement, she told them of several
other virtues possessed by her. Her only son Nanda was seized by the king's men
and killed before her eyes, but she experienced no disquiet, nor did she when
her husband, after his death, having been born as a Yakkha (Bhummadevatā says
the Commentary), revealed himself to her. She was guilty of no transgression of
the precepts, could enter into the four jhānas at will, and had cast off the
five lower fetters. The monks expressed their great admiration and Sāriputta
preached to her (A.iv.63ff).
Buddhaghosa says (AA.ii.718; cf. SnA.i.370)
that she was an anāgāmī, and that, when
she promised to share with Vessavana the merits she would gain by entertaining
the monks, headed by the two Chief Disciples, Vessavana, to show his gratitude,
filled her stores with rice, and these stores remained always full throughout
her life. They thus became proverbial.
The Sutta Nipāta Commentary (SnA..i.370) states that she kept a daily fast and
knew the Pitakas by heart. It also says that, at the end of her recital of the
Parāyana, Vessavana offered her a boon, and she asked that, as her servants were
weary of carrying the harvest home from the fields, Vessavana should allow his
Yakkhas to do the work for them. To this he agreed, and his followers filled for
her one thousand two hundred and fifty store houses. Vessavana then went to the
Buddha and told him of what had happened.
The Dhammapada Commentary (DhA.i.340) mentions Velukantakī Nandamātā and
Khujjattarā as the chief lay women
disciples of the Buddha. But in the Anguttara list of eminent lay women, while
Velukantakī Nandamātā's name does not occur, Khujjatarā is mentioned. Mention is
made of a Nandamātā, eminent in meditation, but she is called
A.i.26; cf. S. ii.236, where the same two are mentioned; Mrs. Rhys Davids
thinks that Velukantakī Nandamātā is probably identical with Uttarā Nandamātā
(Brethren 4, n.1). This identification does not seem to be correct.
See Uttarā Nandamātā; see also