Advice to a King (2)

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In this sutra, Advice to a King (2) (Skt. Rājadeśa; Tib. རྒྱལ་པོ་ལ་གདམས་པ།, Wyl. rgyal po la gdams pa) while giving teachings at Varanasi, the Buddha Shakyamuni discerns that the time is right to train King Udayana of Vatsa. When he meets the king, who at the time is embarking on a military expedition, the king flies into a rage and tries to kill the Buddha with an arrow. However, the arrow circles in the sky, and a voice proclaims a verse on the dangers of anger and warfare. Hearing this verse, the king pays homage to the Buddha, who explains that an enemy far greater than worldly opponents is the affliction of perceiving a self, which binds one to samsara. He uses a military analogy to explain how this great enemy can be controlled by the combined arsenal of the six perfections and slayed by the arrow of nonself. When the king asks what is meant by “non-self,” the Buddha replies in a series of verses that constitute a succinct teaching on all persons and all things being without a self.[1]


The Tibetan translation of this sutra can be found in the General Sutra section of the Tibetan Dergé Kangyur, Toh 215


  1. 84000 Translating the Words of the Buddha.